Fitness freak six months down the line - Baltimore Post-ExaminerBaltimore Post-Examiner

Fitness freak six months down the line


Fitness in the summer

So, how am I doing with my fitness goals?

It’s an interesting one, because now the sun is out I am so much less inclined to be in the gym, so I am not working out as much, other than the classes I am teaching, and that is about 6 hours a week – this means I have cut my workouts by two thirds.

As we know, in the summer Naughty Spice also comes to visit, and this means wine, bbqs and food galore.

But the results are in for six months down the line, and it’s all about the muscle, kids!

I visited a BodPod, which is a capsule that tells me all I need to know and the result was: LEAN – Lower body fat levels than many people – excellent health and fitness. Metabolic age of a 25 year old.

Yeah, this is what I am after – FIT!

This is good news.

In other news, I weaned myself off the protein bars, I am swimming 2 miles a day and I have an excellent tan, pretty much determined by the fact that I am hanging around the swimming pool a lot pretending to do ‘childcare’ duties! Hurrah for the summer (and the odd glass of wine!)

Guest post – Fitness and Cancer

A lady called Melanie Bowen contacted me about adding something to my postings. She talks about the importance of fitness when battling cancer. Here is Melanie’s important guest post:

Physical Activity During Cancer Recovery

Probably  have to get into the pool for fitness.

Probably have to get into the pool for fitness.

Recovering from cancer can be a difficult process, both physically and psychologically. Some people who are battling cancer may find it difficult to stay active during the process. But there are several exercises that can be done depending where you are in the recovery process. Exercise can help increase energy levels, improve one’s overall life quality and increase strength.

Simple Breathing

Those that are undergoing an aggressive cancer treatment regimen can still stay active by doing simple and slow exercises. Individuals who are battling a prognosis of mesothelioma or other lung-related cancers may find it hard to perform many of the traditional exercises. When one is going through cancer treatment, even very light physical activity can be quite helpful.

Breathing exercises are done simply by lying down and slowly inhaling and exhaling, focusing on each breath. The main benefits of breathing exercises are an increased blood flow, better lung function and a decrease of fatigue. Performing regular breathing exercises can help a cancer patient improve the function of their respiratory system even if they’ve undergone surgery.


Biking is a moderate exercise that can be used by those who are in an active recovery stage and are beginning to regain their strength. It is a preferred exercise by many, as it doesn’t require anything else than a simple bicycle. It is also quite easy to do and places less stress on the knees when compared to running. Certain cancers, such as prostate cancer and stomach cancer can cause a decrease in muscle mass. As a result, biking helps combat this muscle atrophy by slowly building back up strength and stamina.

By following a regular moderate exercise regimen, those who are recovering from some cancers can build up their strength levels and keep their muscles healthy. Benefits commonly associated with biking include better mental health, a stronger immune system and better cardiovascular fitness.


Those in the later stages of cancer recovery can improve their physical condition and get back their strength by performing some more advanced exercises, such as running. Cancer patients who have more energy in the later recovery stages can plan an exercise regimen that includes more vigorous exercising.

Patients should measure their own endurance levels and use this information to plan how far they will run and how fast they can go. Another advantage of running is that there are no complicated maneuvers to make and no equipment is required. Running is a great way to combat treatment-related fatigue. Also, running has shown to help increase endurance, hinder bone loss, decrease fatigue, as well as build emotional confidence.

No matter what type of cancer one is battling or where they are in the recovery process, there are exercise routines that can be very beneficial when fighting cancer. As always, patients should always seek advice from their doctor before starting any exercise regimen. Prepare your body and mind in the fight against cancer.

Thanks Melanie – important stuff :)



About the author

Claire Bolden

Claire Bolden McGill is a British expat who lived in Maryland for three years and moved back to the UK in August 2015. Claire wrote about her life as a British expat on the East Coast and now works in travel and hospitality PR in the UK. She still finds time to blog about her repatriation and the reverse culture shock that ensued - and she still hasn't finished that novel, but she's working on it. You can contact Claire via twitter on @clairebmcgill or via her blog From America to England. Contact the author.