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All TopicsForum: Lymphedema → Topic: Kicking LE's butt!! Exercise & Self Care Log

Topic: Kicking LE's butt!! Exercise & Self Care Log

Forum: Lymphedema — Risks, tips for prevention, and info about products that can address the symptoms of lymphedema.

Posted on: Mar 8, 2012 10:32AM

Tina337 wrote:

Let's use this thread to post the exercise and methods of self care we are practicing each day to keep our bodies strong and our LE at bay. After experiencing a flare in my arm when I hadn't been as diligent in caring for my truncal LE, I am motivated to begin exercising regularly, performing MLD daily, and wearing prescribed compression garments. Rather than fall down on the job and become overwhelmed by this chronic condition, I want to challenge myself to kick LE's butt into a small, manageable corner! I started today. Here's what I did.

I still have my arm and hand wrapped, and I am also wearing my compression tank with round swell spots on each side in the underarm area 24/7 as per my LE therapist's instruction. This afternoon I did the entire Lebed DVD. Woohoo! It's a start. Yes, that DVD is still creepy! I'll have you know I continued with the exercises even when my husband unexpectedly walked into the room. I started making fun of the DVD, which was kind of fun, so I continued for the rest of the program taunting and making fun of the weird instructions, cheers, and "dancing!", etc. It actually made me feel more powerful and in control, and I liked that!
"Life isn't about finding yourself, life is about creating yourself." ~ George Bernard Shaw Dx 11/13/2007, DCIS, <1cm, Stage 0, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jan 8, 2018 04:40AM PauletteK wrote:

I disappeared for awhile because I’m doing radiation, and it flared up my LE. I still have 10 more treatments to do and I know I need to go back to PT. Need to find out from RO when will be the good time to start PT and my pump also. I have to stop my pump so it might irritate my skin and I can see why. Skin turned red already so I npdont need more. I’m working on manual massage twice a day, hope I don’t need to bundle up by PT.



Dx 4/1/2017, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 2/8 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 6/15/2017 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Left, Underarm/Axillary Chemotherapy 7/20/2017 AC + T (Taxol) Hormonal Therapy 2/12/2018 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast
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Jan 8, 2018 04:41AM PauletteK wrote:

Hugz glad to know you have a wonderful vacation, time to workout again!



Dx 4/1/2017, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 2/8 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 6/15/2017 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Left, Underarm/Axillary Chemotherapy 7/20/2017 AC + T (Taxol) Hormonal Therapy 2/12/2018 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast
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Jan 9, 2018 05:42PM - edited Jan 9, 2018 05:43PM by hugz4u

Paulette. Thx. your so dedicated to le self care. Good for you for moving forward with this dang cancer. Soon rads will be done. Ten left and counting downwards now

Did cardio workout but today ankle is bit cranky. Thinking it might have been five minutes of rowing and all my PT exercises that put me over the edge. Taking my X-ray to foot doc tomorrow and straightening this whole ankle mess out! Ugh

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Jan 9, 2018 06:13PM PauletteK wrote:

hugz go easy on your foot, do other workouts. I can’t walk the last couple days because of the rain. I trimmed all my roses before the rain came, next task will be fertilized. I’m going to work on my yard this spring, and you said you’re doing too. 😂

I have to keep on top of my LE, I’m hoping by summer I don’t have to wear my sleeve that much. I don’t think I can take the heat with the sleeve. I’m praying LE will calm down ..... good night ladies.


Dx 4/1/2017, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 2/8 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 6/15/2017 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Left, Underarm/Axillary Chemotherapy 7/20/2017 AC + T (Taxol) Hormonal Therapy 2/12/2018 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast
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Jan 10, 2018 04:12PM runor wrote:

I have split firewood and shoveled a ton of heavy wet snow and I thought these exercises would be enough to keep my mild LE under control. WRONG!

Time and again I have to go back to the floor exercises, flat on my back, as being the most helpful so far. Despite all the stretching and what-not I do standing up, none of it has the same impact as laying on the floor and putting my arms straight out to my sides, or up above my head and feeling that incredible pull. I do NOT feel that pull doing the same thing standing up.

I encourage all LE sufferers, even if you think you have good range of motion, lay flat on your back and just spread your arms out to the side, or up above your head, or cross each over your body in turn. Keep your shoulder blades flat on the floor, let your shoulders relax into gravity. Even that can produce a stretch where you didn't know you needed it.

These exercises have, for me, 95% cleared up the armpit, side and rib swelling. My arm swelling is very reduced. The only thing that has not been improved by these floor exercises is my breast, which is still very swollen each night and hurts every morning. But I am trying some techniques for that too and if I find anything that works, I will share.

I am a slow learner but am catching on that this is a forever thing. If I don't keep up these exercises, I pay for it. There is no slacking off. Good luck everyone!

Dx 3/23/2017, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 4/12/2017 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 7/5/2017 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Jan 10, 2018 05:16PM - edited Jan 10, 2018 05:23PM by hugz4u

Runor. Your right no slacking offwith le care. Thanks for report. I would love to see this move posted in a couple pictures as it's hard to imagine. I'd like to try it gently first as I tear muscles easy.(For privacy if you decide to pic, don't show your head.)

Walked 40 min today. 2 miles.

Edited: ok I tried to do it. I'm feeling a stretch in back of shoulder, lat and some trap muscle. Is that what your talking about. How often do you do it! Thx.

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Jan 11, 2018 02:26AM HollyDollyD wrote:

Hi Binney4:

I love my fitbit. I'm on my 3rd. I just got the new Ionic (because it is showerproof). I love it, because it also monitors my pulse and my sleep - so I can track those. I'm just a nerdy data geek - ha. I started out with a Fitbit HR (no longer made) then got a Charge before my Ionic. I love that I can track my meds, etc. through reminders to my watch that just quietly buzz on my wrist. Not obtrusive at all.

10,000 steps per day is meant to be a good starting point. However, I got mine when I was doing 40 per day due to arthritis - and I increased it 50 steps/day from there.

Holly

“Courage is the most important of all the virtues because without courage, you can't practice any other virtue consistently.” ― Maya Angelou
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Jan 11, 2018 03:49AM hugz4u wrote:

Welcome Holly. Great encouragement for us. Wow your really wearing out your fit bits, Lol! Yes Fitbit or even ten dollar pedometer is great for tracking. I have an older brand that’s quite big but refuse to replace until it dies. The white strap is now grey.....as long as it WORKS then I’ll WORKout to!

Lots of my friends have improvements with their arthritis but really exercise doesn’t help mine very much. Looking in crystal ball I see 2 knees,2hips, 2 ankle bones replacements coming down the pipe for me.( do they even do ankles?)

It’s ok, when It happens I’ll just rehabiltate and keep moving. It’s only a speed bump in life. Exercise keeps me alive although it’s hard to get me out the door!

Come on all! Even walk in your house today as a start. Just move, even wiggle toes if your in bed sick!

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Jan 11, 2018 06:30AM runor wrote:

Hugz, do you live where it snows? Do you know what making a snow angel looks like? Where you lay flat down in some nice fresh snow, spread your arms out to the sides and sweep them up and down, pushing away the snow, making angel wings? Basically, that's what I do on the living room floor. Flat on back, arms out to sides and feel that stretch. Change the position of your arms so they form a T or up higher so they form a Y. THey are laying flat on the floor. Your shoulder blades are touching the floor. Then if you want to slide your feet up so your knees are bent and drop both your knees over to one side, then the other, this increases the stretching effect on contracted tissue EXPONENTIALLY!

I have never posted a pic here. Not sure how to do it. But you're right, pics would help. I am not sure what muscles I feel the pull in (since I do not know the names of my muscles, shameful) but I feel it very much in the affected breast itself! OUCH! BUt it keeps things under control swelling wise. It really does.

Dx 3/23/2017, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 4/12/2017 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 7/5/2017 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Jan 11, 2018 08:16AM glennie19 wrote:

Yes, snow angels! My PT is having me do them for ROM. BTW, I have been cleared to go back in the pool next week! Aqua classes, here I come!

Fibromyalgia and Truncal Lymphedema,,, some of the fun things I live with. Total hysterecomy 9/29/14 Prophy MX Righty 11/30/17 Dx 6/27/2013, Paget's, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/6 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 8/7/2013 Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left Dx DCIS
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Jan 11, 2018 10:55AM hugz4u wrote:

runor. Yes familiar with snow angels have made thousands. I usually stretch that area pretty good a couple times a day but I’ve had maximum radiation and my area is so stiff and scarred like a piece of burned steak that I’m scared I’ll rip my muscles etc. I’ll try what you do but be more gentle.

To post pic. Ok this is from my crusty memory!

Bring up like your going to post something

Click on the little icon that has a mountain with a square around it ( which is 7 to right by the “B” for bold icon.)

A square will come up and say “take a photo or use photo library”. Pick a choice one.choose pic then Wait a while to load. It usually takes my iPhone about a minute to load.

Once it loads scroll to bottom where you posted and click submit. (Wait a bit to see if it posted)

Ok I need to know how to post a link so I can just link people to the stepup-speaking.org website our dedicated le sistas developed. Help anyone. I know it’s easy so just tell me.

Glennie. Awesome news. I can’t wait to hear about your first exercise day.

I killed the elliptical today. Then did five min on rower which I hate but did it anyway.

I’m food journaling again on MyFitnessPal after breaking away for a spell. My I do eat much! Must sew lips shut

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Jan 11, 2018 11:20AM PauletteK wrote:

Rumor, thank you for the sharing on the stretch I need it because I can’t do my pump during radiation. If you find how how to reduce breast fluid please share.

I don’t know how to link people, I would like to learn also. I saw some people can do that.


Dx 4/1/2017, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 2/8 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 6/15/2017 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Left, Underarm/Axillary Chemotherapy 7/20/2017 AC + T (Taxol) Hormonal Therapy 2/12/2018 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast
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Jan 11, 2018 12:40PM TaRenee wrote:

runor I do some of the same stretches. My PT also had me on my back holding a cane with both hands at center about shoulder width apart. Use the cane for stability and raise arms above head as far as I can. That one has been good for me. Then holding both ends of the cane and using it to help stretch arms out to the side. I don’t know how to explain that one. But it gives a different stretch than the snow angels.

Holly, thanks for the reminder. I have a Fitbit charge hr that I need to start wearing again. I stopped when I had surgery and have just been wearing my Apple Watch. But it’s too much to set up everything the Fitbit does by itself so I was wearing both. I need to grab it and start wearing it and tracking sleep again (or lack of sleep as the case may be

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Jan 11, 2018 02:57PM runor wrote:

Hugz, if you do lay down to do the snow angel position, you don't have to flap and wave your arms. Just letting them lay there, stretched out on the floor, that alone can be a stretch. Don't push it till you're in agony. You will know when enough is enough.

TaRenee, I think I do get what you're talking about. I do something similar in a standing position, had not tried it laying down. But I was shocked and amazed at how moves I do easily standing up were so much more difficult laying down! Obviously there was a whole other set of muscles (?) that weren't getting worked out. It's like it opened up drainage pathways for me that had been blocked off. Cooked shut with radiation.

Too bad I haven't found the secret to boob fluid yet. Working on it.... Boob fluid. Never thought I'd use that in a sentence.

Dx 3/23/2017, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 4/12/2017 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 7/5/2017 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Jan 11, 2018 03:28PM MinusTwo wrote:

My LE PT also had a bar that I had to grasp on each end and move up & over my head as far as possible while laying down. She measured how close I could get to my arms laying flat over my head. I also had to do sideways motion - like angels - from my side to up over my head and she measured my progress. She would massage/manipulate the muscles under my arm & on the side of my chest as I moved through the arc.

But you are all correct. As my RO said, if we stop the stretching, the irradiated tissue will contract just like a rubber band. We must stretch for the rest of our lives to keep some freedom of movement. I've tried to learn to stretch in bed every night, and to sleep with my arm (s) over my head sometimes.

2/15/11 BMX-DCIS 2SNB clear-TEs; 9/15/11-410gummies; 3/20/13 recurrance-5.5cm,mets to lymphs, Stage IIIB IDC ER/PRneg,HER2+; TCH/Perjeta/Neulasta x6; ALND 9/24/13 1/18 nodes 4.5cm; AC chemo 10/30/13 x3; herceptin again; Rads Feb2014
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Jan 13, 2018 06:12AM Vargadoll wrote:

Do any of you ladies use a half foam roller for the snow angel stretches? It just adds a little extra to the stretch. I ordered my half foam roller off Amazon.com for about $12.

I have a fitbit Alta and love it! I have 13,297 steps in so far today. That' just doing housework!

"She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come" Proverbs 31:25 Dx 12/23/2016, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 2/7/2017 Lumpectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 4/13/2017 Breast
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Jan 13, 2018 03:30PM hugz4u wrote:

I roll over onto my side and grab top of my headboard on bed and stretch that tough piece of meat that was radiated. It stretches it good. Be careful. I also stretch a few times a day. Will try the snow angels to for fun on the floor.

Laying lengthwise (on your back on the foam roller would be good as a chest opener with snow angels. You can stack blankets up rolllike to achieve this stretch instead of roller.

Good workout today.

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Jan 14, 2018 03:19AM TaRenee wrote:

I have a large foam roller that I lay on to do some of my stretching. PS said it would be good at stretching. I do feel it!

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Jan 14, 2018 10:49AM Vargadoll wrote:

I have a question for my LE friends...do you pee ALL the time???? I have always drank alot of water but seems like my out put had doubled. I wondered if the LE or tamoxifen had anything to do with it.

"She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come" Proverbs 31:25 Dx 12/23/2016, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 2/7/2017 Lumpectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 4/13/2017 Breast
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Jan 15, 2018 02:52AM glennie19 wrote:

Thanks for the foam roller idea. I will get mine out and see if i can get a better stretch on it!

Vargadoll: I pee all the time but I did that before LE, so I don't think that will help you.


Good news: back in the pool! I did a Gentle Joints class today, really good for a start back. I'll hit my regular class tomorrow.

Bad news: In April, they are closing the pool area for 10 WEEKS!! for remodeling,,, and sadly they will not be making the warm therapy pool any bigger. i use the warmer pool for my classes as I find the regular pool is just too cold for me to be in there longer than 30 mins, no matter how active the class is. So kinda bummed about that, but the regular instructors are going to come up with a "road map" of class suggestions for us regulars.

Fibromyalgia and Truncal Lymphedema,,, some of the fun things I live with. Total hysterecomy 9/29/14 Prophy MX Righty 11/30/17 Dx 6/27/2013, Paget's, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/6 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 8/7/2013 Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left Dx DCIS
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Jan 15, 2018 03:23AM Vargadoll wrote:

glennie19-YAY for getting in the pool! Boo to the 10 weeks of it being closed! We put a pool in this past summer but I really didn't get to use it much. We had to drain it 3 times to fox installation issues. When it was finally fixed the weather was not warm enough here in the mountains to warm the water back up for me (and the LE ) grandkids were in it turning blue lol!

"She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come" Proverbs 31:25 Dx 12/23/2016, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 2/7/2017 Lumpectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 4/13/2017 Breast
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Jan 15, 2018 08:06AM MinusTwo wrote:

VargaDoll - I don't have any urgent or changed volume pee issues due to LE. Wonder if it could be the Tamoxifen? I haven't taken that so can't speak to the SEs

2/15/11 BMX-DCIS 2SNB clear-TEs; 9/15/11-410gummies; 3/20/13 recurrance-5.5cm,mets to lymphs, Stage IIIB IDC ER/PRneg,HER2+; TCH/Perjeta/Neulasta x6; ALND 9/24/13 1/18 nodes 4.5cm; AC chemo 10/30/13 x3; herceptin again; Rads Feb2014
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Jan 15, 2018 08:18AM Vargadoll wrote:

I haven't creeped around on the tamoxifen threads I might look and see if there are any comments about "extra pee"...

"She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come" Proverbs 31:25 Dx 12/23/2016, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 2/7/2017 Lumpectomy: Right Radiation Therapy 4/13/2017 Breast
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Jan 16, 2018 03:28AM glennie19 wrote:

Back to my fave Aqua class today!!!

Fibromyalgia and Truncal Lymphedema,,, some of the fun things I live with. Total hysterecomy 9/29/14 Prophy MX Righty 11/30/17 Dx 6/27/2013, Paget's, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/6 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 8/7/2013 Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left Dx DCIS
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Jan 16, 2018 01:07PM hugz4u wrote:

yeah Glennie! Ok you’ve got till April to aqua size your brains out!

Gym day. Was good.

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Jan 16, 2018 02:38PM MinusTwo wrote:

Going to get my Prolia shot tomorrow across town in the Medical Center so I'll miss Silver Sneakers.

2/15/11 BMX-DCIS 2SNB clear-TEs; 9/15/11-410gummies; 3/20/13 recurrance-5.5cm,mets to lymphs, Stage IIIB IDC ER/PRneg,HER2+; TCH/Perjeta/Neulasta x6; ALND 9/24/13 1/18 nodes 4.5cm; AC chemo 10/30/13 x3; herceptin again; Rads Feb2014
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Jan 16, 2018 05:33PM - edited Jan 16, 2018 05:33PM by hugz4u

Nice to hear your silver sneakering around. Good

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Jan 18, 2018 06:04PM hugz4u wrote:

Gym today. Wish my ankle would let me run. Not yet! Family ha pretty much banned me from running anymore! We’ll see.

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Jan 22, 2018 06:27AM KatieHawk wrote:

I started a workout regime one year prior to my diagnosis. I am so frustrated because I can only do 10 minutes walking on a treadmill with the Breast LE.

This is tough. Any suggestions?

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Jan 22, 2018 06:31AM KatieHawk wrote:

Boob Fluid---that is my issue...do not know anyone else dealing with this. Any other suggestions.

Any help would be greatly appreciated. Runor your story is so like mine...I had surgery in August and radiation in October

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