Sam is a cancer survivor who is using physical activity to give herself the best possible chance at life.
In 2015 Sam was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, a cancer of the immune system. In the past two years, she’s been knocked down and bed-bound three times, first by five broken vertebra and pneumonia, obtained while in chemo, then by a slipped disk the following winter. That New Year, Sam required a wheelchair to get about. But that didn’t keep her down for long. Sam got herself back on her feet and moving, eventually walking 5km for a local cancer charity in mid-May!
“I did it by buying a treadmill for the garage, starting at 5 minutes walking, aiming to add an extra 1 minute a day. Some days I fell of the wagon, but I just kept getting back on it!”
Last month Sam needed 7-nights in hospital, getting her spleen removed from a new tumour. Thankfully, it was benign, and not a cancer relapse.
Because of Sam’s previous efforts, winning back her mobility and fitness, she was more able to move post-surgery than nurses expected!
Sam now builds physically activity in where she can, for example making herself take the bus and walk 600 metres home, rather than taking a taxi.
She now says her challenge is to find fun, sociable, and affordable ways to keep active!
“I know my cancer or back problems may come back, and the chemo I had has a tendency to affect some patients’ hearts and lungs a while after treatment, so I may get knocked down again, but that gives me all the more reason to get active and give myself the best possible chance at life.”