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Jul 2, 2012 10:05 AM everyminute wrote:
I tried so hard not to cry and held it together for awhile. One of my participants was standing next to me and as soon as I looked at him, I lost it!
Here is the speech - A lot of my research got cut off the video
My name is Mary Ibbetson. I am a Certified Personal Trainer and a cancer survivor.
I am so thrilled to be here today with Ciccotti Center and CDPHP talking about this program which is so near and dear to my heart. This is very personal for me but something I love to be able to share.
When I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008 I was shocked and so was everyone else I know. I was a recreational runner, I ate well, I had a great life. I was 39 years old and very healthy. But I wasn't, I had stage 3 breast cancer.
I had a bilateral mastectomy with immediate reconstruction, 4 months of chemo, 6 weeks of radiation and a total hysterectomy over a period of 8 months. I continue to take medication daily AND of course, I exercise.
I honestly didn't know how I was going to make it through my diagnosis. And frankly it was much harder mentally, emotionally than it was physically, for me. Physically I went into this healthy and strong, emotionally I was just destroyed. My only other experiences with cancer had not ended well and I was scared to death.
I had to find a way to tackle it and get a leg up on it. I desperately needed some hope. I needed to get some control back, something to believe in. As soon as I was diagnosed, I began researching - best treatments and yes, statistics. By the random power of Dr. Google, I came across a story about a woman who was a stage 3 breast cancer survivor who was 5 years out and had just completed and Ironman (2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike and 26.2 mile run - in a row). She has no idea that she was the beginning of my hope - I can't thank her enough. The more research I did about exercise, the more research I found. And the hope grew. That was where my healing began, before the scars faded, before I ran a mile.
With the help of my husband and an amazing group of friends, I got through that 8 months of treatment and then some. I just "celebrated" 4 years from my diagnosis last month and ran my 7th marathon. (My 8th is in 2 months).
They were my support team and they took their jobs very seriously -
The day I got back from NYC where I had my mastectomy, my husband tucked me into bed and went out and bought me a treadmill. And yes, he did get me to use it that day.
My running friends would take turns walking me until I could run again. There were days when walking once around the track was really hard but I always felt better when I did it. When I could run again, they ran slower than me so I felt fast and when I ran in races they ran with me so that I was never alone. The support was unbelievable and I knew that I had to find a way to share.
I believed, and believe, that exercise has been part of my treatment and has gotten me to this point.
Exercise gives us an opportunity to focus on what we can do, not what we can not do.
I want to thank CDPHP for stepping up to the plate and supporting a program that I know, first hand, produces results, long and short term, for cancer survivors as well as for so many others with diseases and disorders. This program has allowed me to give people the support , resources and motivation to find their hope and watch them grow and come into their own - many of them stronger now than ever before, like Dick and Kathy who are here today.
You may feel sorry for me because I was diagnosed with breast cancer, I know I did when I was first diagnosed, but I know that I would never be able to do what I do, make the difference I do, had I not been diagnosed. I am so fortunate to be able to help people find their hope, get their strength back and feel pride in themselves again. There are no guarantees in life and certainly not in mine - but I know for a fact, my life is better because I have been able to spend the last 3 years (and hopefully many years to come) helping others.
But it is not about me - here is some of what the pros have to say:
Numerous studies show that exercise may lengthen cancer survivor's lives and even prevent recurrences. These studies show lower risk of recurrence and dying from cancer is as much as 30-50% for those who exercise regularly. Not to mention the short term benefits of less anxiety, depression, nausea and fatigue.
From the former director of the National Institute on Aging, "If exercise could be packed in a pill, it would be the single most widely prescribed and beneficial medicine in the nation"
From the National Cancer Institute, the most important message for cancer patients and survivors: Avoid inactivity.
Research released by the American College of Sports Medicine finds that increasing physical activity may decrease the risk of dementia related death.
Inactivity is one of the major risk factors for heart disease. Regular, moderate to vigorous physical activity reduces the risk of future cardiac events in healthy individuals and individuals with existing cardiovascular disease - Carnegie Research Institute
A study released just this week from Macmillian Cancer Support, The latest "wonder drug" for cancer isn't a drug at all - but exercise. Health care professionals need to make exercise an integral part of cancer care.
Finally, I want to thank the Ciccotti Center for helping me start this program - at no cost to the community and make my little dream come true. You see it, I see it, every week, we are truly are making a difference.
What does the program look like?
We almost always start with a walk and talk on the track upstairs. For some people, that is all that they can do at that point, and that is fine. Research shows just 30 mins of walking a day is beneficial. Because we have veteran members and new members, it is a bit like a proactive support group where some of the more "seasoned members" and newer members can walk and talk together.
I incorporate some balance, core work and body weight exercises into the sessions and I am also able to work individually with those looking for a more specific training plan or on specific goals like building back strength before or after surgery or working towards a weight loss goal....or train for a marathon!
I tell them to exercise every day and dream big - it's my job to figure out how we get there and we will.
find "becausemarysaysso" on facebook...Long May She Run
Dx 6/5/2008, IDC, Stage IIIa, ER+/PR+, HER2-