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Old 01-09-2015, 03:05 PM   #1
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 18
Running with breast cancer?

I've always been a runner. After my breast cancer diagnosis, even after having multiple biopsies, I continued running even though my breasts hurt. One of my consultants told me not to run but she couldn't give me a reason why not so I continued. Even after starting chemo, I've managed to go for a couple of (short) runs.

But then yesterday, the guy at my health store told me that running may help spread the cancer since it makes the lymph system work harder, and my cancer is in the lymph nodes. I feel this may be nonsense, but I couldn't help googling. What I did find is that running with breast cancer can cause Lymphoedema. I'm beginning to conclude that I should probably just go for long walks, although I'll really miss running.

Has anyone else run through chemo, metastatic breast cancer, etc? Could this guy at the health shop possibly be right?

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Old 01-09-2015, 06:26 PM   #2
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Posts: 293
Re: Running with breast cancer?

This is something I'd discuss with my oncologist and see what they said. Having said that, prior to starting chemo I was talking to my oncologist about the limitations chemo may cause and she proceeded to tell me about a patient of hers that continued to run 6 miles every day during treatment. To my way of thinking, if running were an issue that wouldn't be a story she'd tell to other patients, if that makes sense. I think you need to listen to your body too. Not sure I would take the guy at the health store as an authority on the matter but rather than just dismiss what he said, I'd bring it up with the oncologist.
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Old 01-09-2015, 09:21 PM   #3
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Location: Irvine, CA (Southern CA)
Posts: 414
Re: Running with breast cancer?

I ran through chemo/ expansion even if I could only go 5 minutes. After my reconstruction I had to wait 6 weeks before running again. Running keeps me sane and is form of meditation for me. My doctors knew I was running and nobody blinked an eye, other than when I was supposed to be healing. Just follow post-surgical instructions and you should be good to go. I did buy a really, really good running bra that really hugs my foobies closely to my chest.

Good luck!
Live in Orange County, CA

Diagnosed with DCIS Oct. 2012

Bilateral Dec. 19, 2012
IDC, ER/PR-, Her2+++, Grade 3
Stage IIIa
15.6 cm
4/14 nodes + macrometastases
First thing each morning, I try on my bathing suit. Then, nothing worse can happen the rest of the day.
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Old 01-10-2015, 11:53 PM   #4
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Location: California
Posts: 426
Re: Running with breast cancer?

My girlfriend who had cancer was a marathon runner. Prior to her diagnoses she was training to run in the Boston Marathon. During chemo she continued to run in half marathons and her doctors never once told her not to.She also had lymph node involvement.
11/13 Dx IDC left breast
11/19/2013 Inflammatory Breast Cancer stage 3c grade 2 Er- Pr- her2+++
Node involvement suspected based on CT
12/13 port placed
12/13 neoadjuvant DD AC xs 4 rounds started
02/14 taxol/herceptin started every week xs 12 rounds
Herceptin for 1 year
BRCA1&2 negative
5/06/14 last round taxol/herceptin. Chemo done!!!
5/07/14 clear CT scan
6/11/14 Bilateral Mastectomy Done
6/15/14 8mm tumor post chemo. Removed by bmx
6/15/14 lymph nodes 0/9
6/15/14 officially Cancer Free
7/11/14 emergency surgery to left breast . Wound refused to heal and broke open. New TE placed
7/28/14 emergency medical procedure now to right breast( post op 6 weeks mastectomy ) wound opens.
8/25/14 - 10/07/14 Radiation
11/24/14 CT of Brain clear
01/23/15 One year Herceptin Complete
02/04/15 Diep done
5/01/15 1 year Ct scan- mass in thymus
6/23/15 repeat CT mass in thymus still present
6/30/15 biopsy thymus 7/03/15 mass Benign! Diagnoses Thymic hyperplasia rebound ( chemo at fault, no long term health effects)
7/08/15 phase 2 diep
11/23/15 phase 2b ( reconstructive surgery with lipo)
03/05/18 Vinnie Myer 3 D nipple tattoos complete.
11/19/2018 5 years since Dx of IBC stage 3c remain NED.
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Old 01-12-2015, 01:29 PM   #5
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Join Date: May 2011
Location: El Paso ,Tx
Posts: 436
Re: Running with breast cancer?

I mountain bike during my chemo's was just told to watch my heart rate and not to get to many scratches due to my WBC being lower. It helped my stay sane during such a crazy time.
dx: DCIS 6/8/10, HER 2+ 7/26/10; Stage I Age 41
Double mast w reconstruction
6 TCH w 1yr herceptin
25 radiation tx
Removal of expander on L due to infection. Tried to save it had 3 bouts of antibiotics and went to see plastic surgeon 2-3x wk to get drained. Saving it was my idea not his. But lost it anyway.
Reconstruction set for December 21st,2011
Finished chemo 12/2010
Finished Herceptin 8/26/11
Reconstruction 12/21/11
Expanders exchanged for silicon 3/19/12
Nipple reconstruction 5/18/12
Nipple tatooing- 7/9/12- All done yay!
11/22/12-Went back to get scar tissue stretched to even the outside of breast, didn't work due to it being radiated skin.
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Old 02-12-2016, 12:39 PM   #6
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Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: western ma
Posts: 280
Re: Running with breast cancer?

i would not take any advice from a health food store worker. they say the same thing about massages and my oncologist said it's BS. you are getting a LOT more out of running during cancer than you are by not running out of fear. i exercised all through treatment and got massages for relaxation. i did not have lymph involvement, but your body is going to get amped up over all kinds of things - why not make it something that's good for you and enjoyable?
8/09 - IDC 1.8 cm triple positive, lumpectomy left breast
10/09 began chemo (taxotere & carboplatin) and weekly herceptin.
1/21/10 finished chemo, continued on herceptin every 3 weeks until 10/2010.
2/10 began 7 wks of radiation
6/10 mom dies of primary peritoneal ovarian cancer
8/10 got my last remaining ovary out
10/10 mammogram all clear
3/11 MRI shows 5 'spots' in right breast, largest 1 cm unidentifiable on US
needle biopsy proved the largest to be old inflamed cyst -phew!
7/10 switched to Arimidex
8/9 switched to Femara - allergic to arimidex
Femara made me lose hair quickly so switched to Aromasin
Aromasin made my hair fall out too and the bone pain was too much.
back on Tamoxifen 1/2013.
blood clot from trains and planes 5/2014 so on coumadin per onco for as long as i am on tamoxifen
tamoxifen was supposed to be up with my 5 yrs in may but my boyfriend was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer so i am staying on tamoxifen indefinitely because i want some ammo against BC, given the stress. lost my husband in only 10 wks in 2007 to stage 4 esophageal cancer.
cancer's screwing with another man i love
2/2016 - 6yrs in remission, off tamoxifen and off coumadin - yay!
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Old 08-29-2016, 06:19 PM   #7
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 7
Re: Running with breast cancer?

A really good sports bra would be a great help if you really want to run. but make sure you got the go signal of your doctor
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Old 08-29-2016, 08:23 PM   #8
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Location: Irvine, CA (Southern CA)
Posts: 414
Re: Running with breast cancer?

I really can't find any controlled research data that running during chemo will cause harm. I'm so happy to be cancer free after almost 4 years and it was quite advanced. I think running and hiking, snorkeling, etc not only kept me sane but helped continue a positive lifestyle. It's such a personal decision we all make --- risk vs benefit. Yes, if there is an increase in metabolism and speeds up biological function vs what YOU get out of it, then that's for you to decide. It's so hard when so many decisions have to be made, but while you're deciding ... Walking might be the only option. I was strong and could not run during chemo. But immediately after I regained my condition.
Live in Orange County, CA

Diagnosed with DCIS Oct. 2012

Bilateral Dec. 19, 2012
IDC, ER/PR-, Her2+++, Grade 3
Stage IIIa
15.6 cm
4/14 nodes + macrometastases
First thing each morning, I try on my bathing suit. Then, nothing worse can happen the rest of the day.
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Old 08-29-2016, 09:39 PM   #9
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Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 479
Re: Running with breast cancer?

Current research is showing the benefits of exercise, including running, during and after treatment. You can safely ignore your health store worker, but I always check with my doctors.
Regards.... Pam
Diagnosed 2004: Lumpectomy - 2 tumours, both grade 1 infiltrating duct carcinoma, about 12mm. ER+,
C-erbB-2 status 3+.
Clear margins, no nodal involvement.
Radiotherapy, i year Tamoxifen, 4 years Arimidex.
Rediagnosed 2012: Multiple bone metastases.
3/12: began on Marianne trial - T-DM1 + Pertuzamab/Placebo.
5/12:Unexpected development of numerous bilateral liver mets. Came off trial.
Started Docetaxol/ Herceptin + Zometa.
8/12:Bones stable +major regression in liver (!)
9/12:Can't take any more Docetaxol! Start on Herceptin and Tamoxifen. Cross fingers!
Changed to Denosumab.
11/12: Scan shows stable - yay!
11/13: Still stable :-) !!!
1/16: All stable, but lowered calcium, so switched to Zometa 3 monthly.
2/19: Happily still stable on Herceptin, Letrozole and 3 monthly Zometa.
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