Partner Spotlight: C3 Health & Beauty

Stephanie Chunn

Starting a fitness routine after cancer can be incredibly overwhelming. Cancer treatment can change physical capabilities and upend a person’s understanding of their body. The mental and emotional toll of a cancer diagnosis and treatment is often just as debilitating as the physical aftereffects.

Finding a way forward after cancer treatment requires plenty of personal care, encouragement, and motivation along the way. 

Survivor Fitness Partner Stephanie Chunn of C3 Health & Beauty is a shining example of a trainer offering personal fitness expertise and encouragement to support participants in our program. As a certified cancer exercise specialist, Stephanie understands the unique challenges that participants face. She works with each participant to develop a personal training plan based on their individual needs and goals.

Finding a New Lease on Life 

Stephanie started working with Survivor Fitness participants in 2020, but her connection to the cancer community was established years earlier. As part of her business at C3 Health & Beauty, Stephanie began offering training sessions.

“I love seeing the positive difference that health and fitness can offer survivors,” Stephanie shared. “It’s beyond rewarding when clients share that they see benefits of training with me in their everyday life, such as gardening and playing with their kids or grandkids.” 

Since joining the Survivor Fitness community, Stephanie has worked with more than 20 participants. Her appointment-only fitness studio offers a welcoming environment for our participants in Knoxville. Stephanie has also played a valuable role in expanding Survivor Fitness’ virtual training program — working with participants across the state each week over Zoom. Stephanie has a natural gift for teaching participants how to use non-traditional equipment to incorporate fitness into their everyday routines and lives. 

“There have been times where I’ve worked with participants to use a piece of furniture and their body weight for a specific exercise during a session,” she recalled.” Even if you may not have a particular piece of equipment, we can find creative solutions.” 

Inspired by Their Milestone Moments

Like many Survivor Fitness partners, Stephanie finds her own source of motivation and personal inspiration from working with participants. 

“As a personal trainer, we often show up to make participants feel good when they leave,” she shared. “But our Survivor Fitness participants are equally encouraging to me. Seeing them show up and give 110% every session motivates me. I’m always more fueled from our time together.” 

For Stephanie, the most meaningful aspect of working with Survivor Fitness participants is the moment they recognize their progress. Whether it’s being able to lift a weight that was impossible a few weeks earlier or noticing how their balance has improved, she cherishes the milestone moments that participants reach. 

“Whether it’s halfway through the program or at the end of our time together, these moments let them know that change is possible,” she said.  

Transformation Through Inspiration

Stephanie does a great job of walking alongside each participant during their transformation journey — offering information and inspiration. She helps each participant recognize that every journey is different by reminding them that “this is your own race; go at your own pace.” 

“I love to encourage participants that we’re creating a lifestyle for a lifetime,” she shared. “It’s important to believe that change is possible, but recognize that it may take time.”  

Stephanie does an incredible job of working with each participant to find areas of improvement and make incremental progress over time. Her inspirational words of encouragement often leave a lasting impact. It’s not unusual for Stephanie to get a text from a former participant thanking her. And in her own fashion, Stephanie will often send inspirational and motivational messages to participants — even after they’ve completed the program.  

Join the Survivor Fitness Community

We’re incredibly grateful for Stephanie and the life-changing experience she offers Survivor Fitness participants.

If you’re a personal trainer or fitness center interested in supporting individuals after treatment, connect with our team to learn how you can join the Survivor Fitness network.

If you’re looking for physical support after cancer treatment, we’d love for you to check out our program or submit an application today! 

Managing Fatigue and Increasing Energy Levels Through Nutrition

workout equipment

Fatigue is a common and often debilitating feeling. It can affect anyone, especially as people age, but it can be particularly challenging for cancer survivors. The journey of battling cancer can take a toll on both the body and mind, often leaving survivors feeling mentally drained and physically exhausted. While there is no one-size-fits-all solution, incorporating a well-balanced nutrition plan can play a crucial role in managing fatigue and boosting energy levels for people who experience fatigue.

At Survivor Fitness, most of the cancer survivors who participate in our program are dealing with a level of fatigue they’ve never experienced before — often caused by various factors, including cancer itself, treatment side effects, and changes in lifestyle. 

In this article, we wanted to highlight a few best practices that our registered dietitians and nutritional specialists share when it comes to managing fatigue and increasing energy levels: 

Practice Mindful Eating

Mindful eating can also make a significant difference in managing fatigue. This approach to intuitive eating includes paying attention to your body’s hunger and fullness cues and eating slowly to enhance digestion. Mindful eating can help prevent overeating and promote better nutrient absorption.

If you want to learn more about mindful eating or how to incorporate it into your meals, here are some helpful resources to get started: 


Prioritize Healthy Meals and Snacks

One of the foundations of fatigue-fighting nutrition is to focus on whole, energy-boosting foods. This means choosing recipes that are nutrient-dense, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein. These foods provide essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that support overall health and vitality.

Here are a few of our favorite articles to help you start incorporating whole foods and healthy snacks into your weekly routine: 


Avoid Quick Fixes

While caffeine and sugary foods may provide a quick energy boost, they often lead to increased fatigue later on. Sometimes, these foods can cause even more significant dehydration. Limiting your caffeine intake and opting for healthier alternatives like natural sweeteners are simple but effective ways to improve fatigue. 

Here are some of our favorite simple switches that can help you avoid the processed sugars or refined carbohydrates in your diet: 


Stay Hydrated

Drinking fluids is essential for maintaining energy levels. Water is vital for various bodily functions, including circulation, digestion, and regulating body temperature. If you’re feeling sluggish, a simple first step is to drink plenty of water throughout the day. You may also consider incorporating hydrating foods like water-rich fruits and vegetables into your meals. Cucumbers and melons are great options!  

You can form dozens of different habits to ensure you drink enough water throughout the day. Here are a couple of inspirational resources to get you started: 


A program designed to combat cancer-related fatigue for survivors

Fatigue is a challenging obstacle that many cancer survivors face, but a well-considered nutrition plan can be a powerful tool for managing it. It’s important to remember that each person’s journey is unique, so consult with a healthcare professional or registered dietitian to tailor a nutrition plan specific to your needs and preferences. With dedication and informed choices, you can pave the way to a healthier, more energized life after cancer.

If you’re a cancer survivor looking for more nutritional guidance and support, Survivor Fitness can help with a personal fitness plan to help you regain control of your life. We’d love for you to learn more about our program or apply today

Participant Spotlight: Jennifer Brown

Jennifer Brown

The journey of a cancer survivor reflects remarkable inner strength. Many patients have navigated the physical and emotional challenges of fighting cancer — sometimes over the course of numerous years – only to find themselves facing uncertainties about the road ahead. As the demanding treatments end, a wave of feeling overwhelmed and fearful can wash over, emphasizing the deep complexity of life after treatment.

That’s how Survivor Fitness participant Jennifer Brown described her experience. 

In April 2018, Jennifer was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer. She started chemotherapy the following month, which dropped her weight to 98 pounds and forced her to learn new ways of caring for herself.  After initially receiving an NED diagnosis, Jennifer’s cancer returned at the beginning of 2021, and she began another round of treatment. This time, it took such a toll that Jennifer had to retire from work.

Thankfully, Jennifer became stable around October 2022. That’s when she started thinking about how to regain her strength and energy. 

“I knew my body was weaker than ever, and I wanted to be able to get out and live life. But I was scared I would do more harm than good, and quite frankly, I was embarrassed about my physical state. I could do nothing!” 

Jennifer found hope when she saw a story about Survivor Fitness on the news and reached out to apply for the program. 

From Surviving To Thriving

The following month, Jennifer started her program with Matt Kay at Performance Training in Knoxville, TN. After her first workout, Jennifer knew that this program was precisely what she needed to get back on her feet. She was grateful to connect with a personal trainer who understood her unique challenges and shared a kindred spirit that would encourage and challenge her when needed. 

With Matt’s guidance and support, Jennifer made tremendous strides throughout the 12-week program. 

“At first, the warm-up felt like a total workout. By the end of the sessions, I was working with weight and doing kettlebell squats with 35 to 40 pounds!”

Like many Survivor Fitness participants, Jennifer celebrates how much she achieved in such a short amount of time. Not only was she able to regain strength and energy, but confidence as well. She remembered the discouraging feeling she would get when people looked at her during cancer treatment. Today, she is able at things completely differently. She has been able to change her mindset from “I can’t” to “Maybe I can… let’s try.” 

“This program changed the view of myself from a cancer patient to a person living with cancer!” she celebrated. “I see myself as a person, not a diagnosis. Cancer can take a lot from you, but it can’t take your spirit.”

“Choose Hope and Get to Living” 

Today, Jennifer continues to make tremendous strides in her recovery journey. Through  Survivor Fitness, she’s learned the proper way to lift and exercise. 

“Survivor Fitness showed me everyone has their own starting point, and there is no shame in what that looks like. Just making an effort is a step toward success.” 

Jennifer continues to work out with kettlebells and dumbbells at home. She walks regularly and has even begun incorporating jogging into her routine. She is grateful that her increased movement and strength are helping her body recover faster and fight cancer cells.

Jennifer’s recovery has also opened the door to new opportunities she never thought would be possible again. 

“I was recently contacted about returning to a job I absolutely loved — working with adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Because of Survivor Fitness, I could return to working part-time!”

Jennifer carries her infectious positivity and ‘can-do spirit’ into everything she does. As she continues her recovery journey, she encourages every cancer survivor to find the determination to keep moving forward after treatment.

“Choose hope, choose resolve, choose positivity. Choose Survivor Fitness and get to living!”

Interested in Becoming a Survivor Fitness Participant?

If you or someone you know is a cancer survivor looking to regain health and wellness after cancer, we’re here for you! Connect with us today to learn more about our program and our in-person or virtual training options.