As someone who exercised while taking chemotherapy treatments for breast cancer, Stephanie Angelo knew she wanted to participate in LIVESTRONG when she saw it on the Family Y Web site.
“I thought it sounded like a great program and said, ‘Wow, I want to try this,’” she said.
LIVSTRONG is a research-based program to help cancer survivors improve endurance, battle fatigue, increase flexibility, and improve flexibility and balance, said Janet Thornburg, LIVESTRONG coordinator for local Family Y branches.
Exercises are tailored to each person using the American College of Sports Medicine’s guideline for exercising in cancer survivors.
“Each exercise program meets them where they are,” she said. “It encourages them to build beyond their starting point.”
Although Angelo exercised prior to her diagnosis in December 2011 and during treatment, participating in the program helped her physically and emotionally, she said.
She was so inspired that she wanted to help others experience the transformation and switched gears from being a participant to becoming one of the instructors for the program.
She has instructed sessions at various Family Y branches, including the North Augusta Family Y.
It’s a program Angelo encourages other cancer survivors to participate in, regardless of age.
“Jump in with both feet and you won’t regret a moment,” she said.
The next set of sessions, which last 12 weeks, will begin in mid-January. Participants meet twice a week for an hour and a half. There is space for eight to 10 people in each session.
The LIVESTRONG program is being held at six local Family Y branches at varying times and days. For more information or to sign up to participate, contact Thornburg at (803) 349-8101.