Siobhan O’Toole

Chemo Exercise Trial - fighting cancer with fitness

We all know how hard it can be to get motivated to hit the gym. Imagine finding the energy to train while you are fighting cancer? Siobhan O’Toole did just that. With the help of the incredible doctors at The Kinghorn Cancer Centre, Siobhan trained her way through cancer.

When Siobhan was diagnosed with an aggressive form of breast cancer known as triple negative breast cancer in May 2018, she was swift to respond. A family history of breast cancer meant she was all too aware of the devastating effects of breast cancer.

Siobhan’s life changed when she was introduced to Dr Sara Wahlroos, Medical Oncologist at St Vincent’s Hospital Sydney, who enrolled her in a study of the impacts of weight bearing exercise on breast cancer treatment.

During the program Siobhan was encouraged to walk 8000 steps a day and lift weights 3 times a week.

A depleted immune system led to illness after Siobhan began chemotherapy but with Dr Wahlroos’ program and encouragement, she kept with her exercise plan despite some extremely difficult days.

“Exercise gave me resilience. Chemo and cancer treatment is a marathon. You can’t sprint at the start to make it go faster. Having exercise gave me something to control during chemo. I couldn’t control the side effects but I could control weights and food. Exercise is also a prevention for depression”.

A passionate advocate for Dr Wahlroos’ research study, the pair now want to ensure everyone has free access to exercise during cancer treatments.  The science is clear that exercise compliments cancer treatments and participation in ANY strength training is associated with a 31% reduction in cancer mortality.

Siobhan and a dedicated support network of friends, family and professionals are working together to raise much needed funds to support a trial for other cancer patients to train their way through Chemo.

Can you join Siobhan in raising $50,000 to start the trial and help cancer patients get the training and support they need to fight cancer with fitness?

Select Cancer Exercise Trial in the drop down menu on the donate page.

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