Exercise is extremely important; however there are times when it’s not advised. The American Cancer Society and the American College of Sports Medicine have developed guidelines for when you should not exercise. Always be sure to check in with your treatment team, keeping them up to date on what you are doing and how you are feeling. This is especially important if your treatments have affected your heart, lungs or bones.



Activity Precautions

  • Avoid public gyms and other public places until your blood counts are at safe levels.
  • If it’s OK with your doctor, drink plenty of fluids.
  • If you don’t feel up to exercising, try to stretch daily for 10 minutes
  • Avoid uneven surfaces or any weight-bearing exercises that could cause you to fall and injure yourself.
  • If you have numbness in your feet or problems with balance, you are at higher risk for falls. Try a stationary bicycle rather than a treadmill.
  • Avoid resistance training that uses muscles in the area of a catheter to avoid dislodging it.


Do NOT Exercise If…

You Experience:

  • Chest pain or pressure
  • Watch for swollen ankles, unexplained weight gain
  • Anemia (low red blood cell count)
  • Irregular heartbeats or palpitations or resting heart rate over 100 bpm
  • Fever
  • Excessive rise in blood pressure
  • Sudden shortness of breath, muscle fatigue or weakness
  • Sudden onset of nausea
  • Nausea or Vomiting within previous 24-36 hours
  • Muscle or joint pain
  • Bruising or bleeding
  • Blurred vision, lightheadedness, dizziness or faintness
  • Excessive fatigue
  • Chronic muscle soreness
  • Disorientation, confusion


Blood Work Guidelines:

  • If you have had a high dose chemotherapy session in the previous 24 hours
  • Your platelet count is < 50,000/mm3
  • Your white blood cell counts are below 3,000/mm3Absolute granulocyte count <2,500/mm3
  • Your hemocrit is < 25%
  • Your Hemoglobin (Hgb) is < 8g/dl
  • If the levels of minerals in your blood are not normal.