Getting strong after cancer can look different to each person. For Sherri, the feeling of not being able to lift her luggage on an airplane prompted her to want to feel strong again after her cancer experience. So she entered a body-building competition and trained and…
The proof isn’t always in the pudding!
After Sherri was diagnosed with breast cancer she did genetic testing only to find out that they couldn’t find a link to the breast cancer that took her mother and grandmother from her. This isn’t to say that there isn’t a link… or that the test was wrong, but rather that we don’t have all the (genetic) answers yet. And that was the case for Sherri. So if you’ve had genetic testing and it didn’t turn up any mind-blowing answers for you, don’t feel discouraged. But also remember that whether or not you have family members who’ve had cancer, it ultimately comes down to a gene that has been turned on or off by lifestyle. Your genetics play a role, but they don’t tell the whole story.
Stress can be a factor in many diseases, including cancer.
Stress can wreak havoc on your life in so many ways. It was this way for me as it was for Sherri as well. Even though Sherri was in a new relationship, the years prior were not always peaches. Stress can come from different areas of your life too – family, relationships, or a stressful job are just some of the places we encounter significant stress in our lives. Learning to manage stress is one of the best things you can do to ensure a healthy future. It’s not a foolproof plan but it definitely helps!
Coming back to yourself.
One of the things Sherri said in the interview was that she found a way back to herself. It came in an instant while listening to music in the car. When you’ve been through a really rough patch in life, realizing that you – your essence – your core is still there, is a beautiful (and comforting) thing.
Getting strong after cancer.
For Sherri, this came in the form of physical exercise and specifically bodybuilding. If lifting heavy weights and pumping up your muscles isn’t your cup of tea, no worries! Exercise in any form, especially brisk walking, is good for you.
And weight lifting isn’t just for bodybuilders! Having lean muscle mass helps you control your weight (an independent risk factor) by burning calories while you are at rest (fat doesn’t do this). Staying strong decreases the likelihood of a fall. And, lean muscles help support your bones. These are important things to keep in mind no matter what your age because changes begin before you notice when you’re young and the time to work on your health is before problems arise.
What I love about Sherri’s story of getting strong after cancer is that she decided to go after a big goal in the process. I don’t know that many people who want to be bodybuilders and even fewer that are previous cancer survivors!
Here are some of my favorite moments from this episode:
- 1:50 About Sherri Silverman Goldstein
- 2:38 Sherri’s experience with cancer.
- 4:51 To do genetic testing or not.
- 6:22 The experience of coming back to yourself.
- 8:05 Cancer and dating.
- 9:17 A special first-year cancer-versary.
- 11:28 Deciding to get strong.
- 13:52 Getting vulnerable.
- 18:18 What’s next on Sherri’s journey.
- 19:23 Surprises along the journey.
Links mentioned in this episode:
- Iron Heart Bodybuilding Competition
In my last podcast, episode 37, I talked with personal trainer and bodybuilder, Korin Sutton about regaining strength after an illness. We talked a lot about how being physically active promotes healing both during and after an illness. You can listen to the episode here.
A new episode is released every second and fourth Thursday of each month.
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