Weight and Resistance Training - For the Personal Trainers out there

12-21-2005, 09:27 PM
Hey there!:carrot:

I was just wondering if you trainers could give me some tips.
I am a recent cancer survivor ( had a Stemm Cell transplant last march 30th). My docs have given me the go ahead to work out (more cardio, not too heavy with the weights). I was very much into the weights before I got sick and would really like to get back into the gym starting in January. I am on prednisone (thus have to go easy on the weights)...

So I know "take it slow" "listen to your body"...and all that stuff...I was a trainer too before I got sick... I would like to see results rather quickly, but have not dealt with anyone who has been on prednisone.

This is my plan:

Cardio:40mins3-4times a week
Weights: 30mins3-4 times a week (full body to start).

about the weights: What kind of full body program should I do...

Anyother advice would be great!!!!

12-21-2005, 09:45 PM
Hi fitgal :wave:

I really don't have any answers for you, but wanted to say hello.

I've worked with several cancer survivors (various types) and other than the usual precautions which you already mentioned, nothing was any different for them than for someone who wasn't previously sick or deconditioned.

I've been on prednisone and boy, am I impressed that you can actually lose weight while taking it! I wanted to (and did) eat non-stop while taking it. I was literally hallucinating food. :bravo:


12-21-2005, 09:55 PM
Congrats to you Fitgal2! My DH had a stem cell transplant in 2000 and is now 5 years cancer-free! His docs were very much in favor of him doing aerobic/cardio exercise. He added weights after awhile, but still doesn't do a lot (though I encourage him esp given all the chemo and drugs he's had, I can't believe they don't affect his bone density). He however, didn't have long-term use of prednisone. When he was on it, he did cardio, but not weights. But... all that was several years ago, so take it with a grain of salt. :)

12-22-2005, 12:25 AM
I have no advise for you fitgal2 except :welcome: :bravo: to you for all you've gone through...

I do have a question though... Why is it not recommended to weight train while on predinisone? I do realise how strong this drug is DH had to take it a few years ago for Bells Palsy...

12-22-2005, 10:18 AM
Hey there ladies
Thank you for the warm welcomes!!!

I am not really sure why it is not recommended to weight train, well atleast heavyier weights. I believe that its b/c PRED eats away at the muscle thus making it harder for the muscle to repair itself???? I don't really know and if that was the case wouldn't using weights be a good thing?

WATERRAT~~ thank you for posting. It is really nice to hear success stories about these kinds of things...all the doctors tell a person is how bad their situation is...atleast that is all i heard. So THANK YOU for adding his story to my "collection" and tell him CONGRATULATIONS on reaching the 5 year mark that is HUGE!!!!!!

12-22-2005, 11:54 AM
Congratulations for being cancer free!

I think most physician's are anti-weight training, pro-cardio. My Dr.'s view is why should I weight train when it won't help my all important BMI? He doesn't see the benefits of being muscular although he does concede it is better than being fat.

12-22-2005, 04:28 PM
So, I got to wondering about prednisone and exercise, so I started poking around (hey, it's what librarians DO, seek information :lol: )

From GIHealth.com, run by an Endoscopy Center in PA http://www.gihealth.com/html/education/drugs/prednisone.html

Prednisone can also cause muscle weakness and atrophy. A low impact daily exercise program will help burn up more calories, improve your sense of well-being, and help prevent muscle and bone loss. Exercise can also help prevent the weight gain that often occurs during prednisone therapy. This exercise program should include both aerobic exercises which burn calories and improve cardiovascular fitness as well as moderate weight-training which strengthens muscles and slows bone loss.

and this one was interesting, about a study on the effects of exercise while on prednisone. Done with organ transplant patients, but still taking prednisone. http://www.annieappleseedproject.org/bonlosrevwit.html

researchers discovered the bone loss and osteoporosis caused by prednisone, a medicine for patients with lung failure and lung-transplant recipients, is not only preventable but reversible through weight-lifting exercises. The findings contradict the once commonly held belief that organ transplant recipients receiving prednisone should not participate in weight-lifting exercises because they may be at greater risk for muscle and bone injury. Physicians who do encourage exercise in their transplant recipients often recommend only cardiovascular exercises such as walking, which has little beneficial effect on preventing osteoporosis

Very interesting.

12-22-2005, 06:50 PM
Wow, I was on prednisone for 5 days this fall and no one ever said anything about not lifting weights. Of course, I got so tired from it that I could barely make it from the living room to the bedroom without stopping in the hall fora nap. I heard the rumors that people "speed" from it, and I do feel a bit gipped :( On the other hand, I had it as an IV in a glucose solution and being a Type 2 diabetic, it about sent me off the charts. I am with Mel on the eating end - anything not nailed down was fiar game!

Good luck with your program and congratulations with your success! You are doing great. My (non-professional) recommendation would be to start with the cardio and ask your doctor/physical therapist and a local support group for more information on the weights. And remember, the internet is a powerful tool - use it to find out what you can. I had a lot of trouble finding out about exercise and MS beyond 30 min of cardio 3x a week and luckily found an MS Support site and center for those more athletic run by Jummy Heuga (ex-Olympian with MS) that has been very helpful. Don;t give up - someone out there has answers that can help you.

Congratualtions again on your progress and please, keep us posted.

12-22-2005, 06:50 PM
Oh thank you Pat that was very interesting... YAY for weight lifting :strong:

12-22-2005, 07:23 PM
A week or 2 is not long enough for the more drastic side effects like muscle/bone problems. Transplant patients spend a looonnnng time on prednisone.

12-22-2005, 08:20 PM
My brother had a liver transplant and was on prednisone for a long time. I remember he had a ton of water weight gain. His face just puffed up. He never was really into working out or weight training, so I don't know what his doctors told him he should or shouldn't do, but I do remember he tried to walk most every day, so that's probably what they told him to do. ::shrugs:: I'm no help.

12-22-2005, 09:28 PM

Thanks for the info...I have been looking and looking and couln't find that type of info!! thanks!!

I will be on prednison for a total of nine months...so far bone density is not an issue, weight gain is not too bad...I am stedy, and have even lost, but that is b/c I am super consious about what i eat...nothing salty! Nothing greesy! So yeah, I really appreciat all the info, keep it coming!