In 2020, Christin Kennard faced a difficult diagnosis on top of the COVID-19 pandemic. But despite her challenges, she found the strength to put herself first. She was determined to regain her health and wellness. In this Q&A feature, learn more about how Christin started her fitness journey during her time with Survivor Fitness.
A Q & A with Christin Kennard
Survivor Fitness: Tell us a little about how and when you became a participant.
Christin Kennard: In February 2020, I was diagnosed with triple-negative breast cancer after what turned out to be a six-week process. During that time, I stress-ate and had gained over ten pounds by the time I started chemo the first week of March. As a result of cancer treatment medications, chemo, a double mastectomy and reconstruction, little physical activity—mixed with the stress of the pandemic—I gained a total of a little over 30 pounds and lost a great deal of stamina and muscle tone.
In March of 2021, my Nurse Navigator Lindsay Coleman informed me about the Survivor Fitness program. It seemed like a light at the end of a very dark tunnel, where I had a resultant lack of confidence and became lost in my health issues. I had no clue how to get out. I actually cried when I learned I was accepted into the program on a scholarship. I still have tears as I write this, remembering how hopeless and lost I felt.
SF: How have you been able to regain your health and wellness throughout your time with Survivor Fitness?
CK:I was paired with the perfect trainer, David Rogers, for my health situation. He assessed where I was physically and mentally, and we went from there. During our twice-weekly meetings, he gently pushed me while making sure I was not straining or hurting myself. He gave me guidance on home workouts and encouraged me to be active every day in some way while never judging when it didn’t happen. He also offered nutritional tips in addition to the advice I had received from the Survivor Fitness nutritionist. I had some obstacles pertaining to muscle soreness and various body aches, which he effectively helped me work through with solid advice and home strategies.
SF: What makes the relationship with Survivor Fitness so good?
CK: The environment of no judgment and encouragement is amazing. No matter where you are, you can go up, and you will with this program. They specialize in helping you heal physically and mentally.
SF: In what ways does Survivor Fitness empower you to stay active and healthy?
CK: My confidence increased as my health did. After joining the program in mid-March, I was able to go back to work full-time and go on a beach vacation in June. Due to a car shortage, there were no cars to rent. Because of Survivor Fitness, I was confident in renting bicycles while we were there. We rode them everywhere, including meals and the grocery. I was also able to go on vacation in New York City in July and keep up with two teenagers. I also recently began training to run a half marathon.
SF: Do you have anything that stands out to you that you want to share from this journey?
CK: Even if you can’t do full workouts, stretch and get up to move. My 30-minute walks led me to start training for a half marathon. Even if that’s not your goal, being active in some way is never wrong.
SF: What would you tell someone else who might be on a similar journey and is considering being a Survivor Fitness participant?
CK: Don’t hesitate. Take the leap. No matter what level you are mentally or physically or how much time you have spent being inactive, Survivor Fitness can and will make a difference. It’s about taking one step at a time, one day at a time, and making small changes. They add up and begin to multiply, I promise.
Interested in Becoming a Survivor Fitness Participant?
If you or someone you know is a cancer survivor looking to regain your health and wellness through one-on-one personal training and nutritional support, we’re here for you! Connect with us today to learn more.