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A breast cancer survivor is using her experiences of staying active through treatment and beyond to help encourage other people to do the same.

Nic Naish, 47 from Worthing, finished her treatment in 2010 and has since re-trained as a cancer and exercise rehabilitation specialist. She is now playing a key role in delivering Move More Sussex - a free physical activity programme for people living with cancer that recently launched in Worthing with a free session at Bandana Health and Fitness,...

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Cancer survivor teams up with Albion in the Community and Macmillan to help people Move More

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A breast cancer survivor is using her experiences of staying active through treatment and beyond to help encourage other people to do the same.

Nic Naish, 47 from Worthing, finished her treatment in 2010 and has since re-trained as a cancer and exercise rehabilitation specialist. She is now playing a key role in delivering Move More Sussex – a free physical activity programme for people living with cancer that recently launched in Worthing with a free session at Bandana Health and Fitness, in Tarring Road.

The programme is being run by Albion in the Community (AITC) in partnership with Macmillan Cancer Support.

Move More is Macmillan’s national campaign to help people living with cancer to get more active. Recent research shows that taking part in physical activity during and after cancer treatment can have a host of positive impacts, from limiting fatigue and improving a person’s mood, to reduced disease progression and a decreased risk of recurrence.

Being active to recommended levels can also help cut the risk of other health conditions, such as coronary heart disease and diabetes, while there are also a number of psychological benefits.

And Move More Sussex is not just limited to those people who have been previously active – anyone who has an experience of cancer in the last five years can sign up. AITC’s fully-qualified coaches will meet and offer helpful advice and support as well as providing access to tailored classes nearby.

After an initial meeting, people are able to access a free 10-week circuits group – and Nic is among the AITC coaches leading Move More Sussex in Worthing.

Having been through cancer treatment herself before retraining in physical activity, she knows better than most the importance of staying active.

She explained: “Keeping active gives you a fighting chance on so many levels. It prevents a lot of the muscle wastage and loss in bone density associated with chemotherapy and general lack of mobility.

“It also gets the much needed endorphins released to make you feel better – and it allows you to keep your place in society. The Move More Sussex programme is great for advising just the right amount of exercise to people dealing with cancer and the consequences of treatment.”

Macmillan Cancer Support’s partnership manager Kristiina Parkinson was equally enthusiastic about the benefits of Move More Sussex. She said: “Physical activity helps not only to manage the often-devastating consequences of treatment such as fatigue, depression and heart damage, but also to reduce the risk of the disease worsening or recurring in cancer patients.

“It’s never too late to reap the benefits so I would encourage anyone with an experience of cancer in the last five years to get in touch with Albion in the Community.  It doesn’t matter what your previous or current fitness levels are – Nic and the team will help you find the right level of physical activity for you.

“All of us can benefit from moving more, but for people affected by cancer the impact of increasing your physical activity can act like a wonder drug.”

Anyone interested in signing-up for Move More Sussex can pick up a Freepost form at venues across Worthing; self-refer online at www.movemoresussex.org.uk or by calling 01273 668591 or talk to their cancer care team or GP.