Why Metabolism Declines With Age (And How to Reverse It!) – Podcast Ep. 29

Why Metabolism Declines With Age (And How to Reverse It!) – Podcast Ep. 29

Welcome to the 29th episode of the Living Healthy Podcast, presented by LA Fitness.

On this episode of the Living Healthy Podcast, Debbie James, RDN, talks metabolism. Why does metabolism decrease as we age and how can we prevent or reverse this? All this and more on this week’s episode!

How Are We Doing? 

This podcast should not replace any exercise program or restrictions, any dietary supplements or restrictions, or any other medical recommendations from your primary care physician. Before starting any exercise program or diet, make sure it is approved by your doctor.

Timecard Markers – Why Metabolism Declines with Age – Podcast Ep. 29 


Begins at 0:01      

Introduction of LAF Registered Dietitian, Debbie James   


What is Metabolism?  


At What Age Does Metabolism Start Slowing Down?  


Are There Ways to Help Stop Metabolism from Declining?  


What Are Some Ways to Help Increase Your Metabolic Rate? 


When Does Bone Mass Start Declining? 


Is There a Way to Measure Your Metabolism? Should This Be Measured? 


Are There Certain Foods That Help Increase/Speed Up Metabolism?  


Are There Foods You Should Stay Away From? 


Andrew’s Sidebar Side Salad Segment  


What Outside Factors Affect Metabolism? How Does Stress Play a Role? 


Does Someone with a High Metabolism Have More Energy? 


Is There a Certain Type of Exercise That’s Best for Increasing Metabolism?  


Green Tea and EGCG – Does This Really Help Increase Calorie Expenditure?  


Actionable Advice 




Recommended Podcast Episodes 

Injuries: Back, Knee, Shoulder – Podcast Ep. 28

Injuries: Back, Knee, Shoulder – Podcast Ep. 28

Welcome to the 28th episode of the Living Healthy Podcast, presented by LA Fitness.

On this episode of the Living Healthy Podcast, the one-and-only, LA Fitness Master Trainer, Geoff Fox, joins the show to discuss how to prevent and handle back, knee and shoulder injuries. 

How Are We Doing? 

This podcast should not replace any exercise program or restrictions, any dietary supplements or restrictions, or any other medical recommendations from your primary care physician. Before starting any exercise program or diet, make sure it is approved by your doctor.

Timecard Markers – Injuries: Back, Knee, Shoulder – Podcast Ep. 28  


Begins at 0:01     

Introduction of LA Fitness Master Trainer, Geoff Fox 


Keep in Touch with Us!  


Part 1 – The Back 


What Are Some of the Most Common Back Injuries?  


Is There a Way to Help Prevent Back Injuries from Occurring?  


Why Do Back Injuries Tend to Affect More Seasoned Adults?  


What Are Some Go-To Machines or Exercises for Strengthening the Back? 


What Products on the Market Help with Back Pain?  


Is it Safe to Work Out with a Back Injury?  


Part 2 – The Shoulders 

How Important is it to Focus on Shoulder Strengthening Exercises? 


What Are Some of the Best Exercises for the Shoulders? 


What Should Someone with a Shoulder Injury Do to Recover?  


Is There a Way to Prevent Shoulder Burnout?  


What is More Important? Muscle Health or Bone Health?  


Part 3 – The Knees 

Is it OK to Work Out with a Knee Injury? 


What Causes Knee Injuries to Happen?  


What Are Some of the Best Knee Strengthening Exercises? 


Are There Certain Injuries That Should Be Avoided by Those Susceptible to Knee Injuries? 


Do Bodybuilders Experience Knee Issues A Lot Due to Increased Muscle Weight? 


Actionable Advice 




Goodbye to One-Half of Your Show Hosts, Candice Currie  


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The Importance of Exercise for Cancer Patients: What You Need to Know

The Importance of Exercise for Cancer Patients: What You Need to Know

The term “cancer survivor” refers to anyone who has been diagnosed with cancer, no matter where they may be in their journey. With earlier detection and improvements in screening and treatment, cancer survivors are living longer. ACSM recommends for patients to aim for 150 minutes per week of moderate aerobic exercise with an additional two to three sessions of strength training (such as weight lifting) unless contraindicated. A 2017 systematic review suggests that there is sufficient research to support the promotion of exercise for adults with cancer, and some to support the promotion of exercise in group or supervised settings and for a long period of time to improve quality of life and muscular and aerobic fitness (1). Exercising at moderate intensities can be sustainable for longer periods of time and could encourage the formation of an exercise habit. It is important that an assessment be conducted to evaluate the effects of disease, treatments, and comorbidities and that a survivor receives clearance from their oncologist (1).

How cancer patients should approach exercise?

A patient’s approach to exercise should be rehabilitative and should consider their fitness level prior to diagnosis and treatment. The survivor will need to consider the recency of surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, hormonal therapy, and any side effects that may have occurred with each. The patient’s oncologist/physical therapist/trainer can be helpful in identifying side effects that could influence one’s performance and help them determine what modality of exercise could be the most appropriate to prevent injury. These health/fitness professionals should also work with the patient to come up with realistic activity goals. Having goals will increase motivation and facilitate a lasting behavior change!

Some of the best exercise for cancer patients – does this vary between those who are currently undergoing cancer treatment versus those in remission?

The best exercise is the one that fits the individual. Again, it’s important to consider any treatment-related side effects that may be present. This can serve as a foundation for tailoring the patient’s regimen. Common treatment-induced side effects that could have implications on exercise include neuropathy, lymphedema, and cardiotoxicity.

If the survivor is experiencing neuropathy (often referred to as chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN)), it would be best to steer away from high-impact free weights and aerobic exercises that require a lot of balance. Safer modalities would be low-impact exercises such as swimming and biking. For lower extremity neuropathy, patients should try to incorporate calf stretches, ankle circles, walking, leg lifts, and balancing exercises (2).

While most common in breast cancer survivors, lymphedema can be present in any part of the body that has been subject to surgery or radiation. It is essential to seek out care from a lymphedema specialist and resolve the issue. Contrary to popular belief, once the lymphedema is under control, it is safe to exercise at a slow and progressive rate (3). The survivor will need to pay close attention to any changes in the affected area. This can include swelling of part or all of your arm or leg including fingers or toes, a feeling of heaviness or tightness, restricted range of motion, aching or discomfort, recurring infections, or hardening and thickening of the skin (4).

For those experiencing cardiotoxicity after chemotherapy (in particular, anthracycline-based treatment) or radiation to the chest area, it will be important to get physician clearance before engaging in exercise. However, engaging in a low-to-moderate intensity exercise regime prior to or during treatments could potentially mitigate the severity of treatment-induced cardiotoxicity (5).

Why exercise is so important for cancer patients.

The benefits from exercise for this population are extensive. Cancer survivors are almost three times more likely to report fair or poor health after treatment and twice as likely to have psychosocial disabilities and physical and functional limitations as persons without cancer (6). In addition to the possibility of neuropathy, lymphedema, and cardiotoxicity as mentioned above, some other lingering effects of treatment include but are not limited to cancer-related fatigue, weight gain, weight loss, depression, anxiety, insomnia, altered body composition, and changes in bone mineral density. Of these, strong evidence suggests that exercise can directly improve fatigue, weight changes, depression, anxiety, and bone health (7).

  • Fatigue: Fatigue occurs in approximately 50-90% of patients undergoing treatment. While it may seem contradictory, exercise happens to be the number one non-pharmaceutical approach to combatting cancer-related fatigue. It can be hard to get started, but great benefits will be reaped if one can get going…even if it’s something as small as walking around the block for 10 minutes or doing house cleaning. A meta-analysis of 70 studies reported that exercise reduces fatigue by 32% during treatment and by 38% after cancer treatment [8]. Resistance, aerobic, flexibility and mixed training programs have all demonstrated improvements in fatigue levels.
  • Weight loss/weight gain: There are many mechanisms that can cause a patient to lose weight. One is associated with the side effects of chemotherapy such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and anorexia. Another mechanism is the presence of an altered metabolism and increased inflammatory cytokines that speed up muscle degradation and can lead to a more serious condition called cancer cachexia (7). On the other hand, weight gain and/or increased fat-to-lean mass ratio can be caused by certain cancer therapies, especially hormonal therapies (7). Exercise can mediate inflammation and help maintain lean mass to help keep weight in check.
  • Depression/Anxiety/Insomnia: Some of us are familiar with the endorphins and serotonin increase that exercise brings on, but exercise is also associated with increased levels of endocannabinoids which have an anti-anxiety effect and promote a sense of well-being [9]. Physical activity also helps patients develop an increased sense of control in his/her own life. Exercise also reduces many negative emotions such as anger, contempt, disgust, guilt, fear and nervousness. The anti-anxiety and antidepressant effects of exercise has been demonstrated in patients undergoing treatment [10, 11] as well as cancer survivors [12]. Insomnia is often induced by increased depression and anxiety, so by treating the root of the problem (depression and anxiety), insomnia can be reduced.
  • Bone health: Bone density can be by hormonal therapies or by metastases to the bone. In those without mets, impact and weight exercise training are preferred to maximize bone health (7). Impact exercises include activities such as running and jumping. Weight and resistance training refer to activities that require the shortening (contraction) and elongation of muscles. By loading the bones through impact and weight bearing activity, you help to prevent further bone loss. If mets are present in the bones, you will want to be extra careful when choosing appropriate activities. As with other exercises, if a patient is experiencing bone metastases or a loss of bone mineral density, it will be essential to seek out advice from an experienced fitness professional.

How family and friends can help show their support (fitness and nutrition wise).

Encouragement! Exercise can be daunting for some. It is important to recognize the benefits of exercise and help your loved one find a good regimen that fits their needs. You may also consider exercising with them. That way you hold each other accountable and both get the amazing benefits of exercise.

Where our readers can go for more information.

Look for an ACSM Cancer Exercise Trainer in your area.



  1. Segal, R., Zwaal, C., Green, E., Tomasone, J. R., Loblaw, A., Petrella, T., & Exercise for People with Cancer Guideline Development Group (2017). Exercise for people with cancer: a systematic review. Current oncology (Toronto, Ont.)24(4), e290–e315. doi:10.3747/co.24.3619
  2. Tips for Managing Neuropathy. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.dana-farber.org/health-library/articles/tips-for-managing-neuropathy/
  3. Lymphedema (PDQ): Health professional version. National Cancer Institute. https://www.cancer.gov/about-cancer/treatment/side-effects/lymphedema/lymphedema-hp-pdq#section/all. Accessed Sept. 24, 2017.
  4. Lymphedema. (2017, December 21). Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/lymphedema/symptoms-causes/syc-20374682
  5. Chen, J. J., Wu, P., Middlekauff, H. R., & Nguyen, K. (2017). Aerobic exercise in anthracycline-induced cardiotoxicity: A systematic review of current evidence and future directions. American Journal of Physiology-Heart and Circulatory Physiology, 312(2). doi:10.1152/ajpheart.00646.2016
  6. Hewitt Maria, Rowland Julia H, Yancik Rosemary. Cancer survivors in the United States: age, health, and disability. The journals of gerontology. Series A, Biological sciences and medical sciences. 2003;58:82–91.
  7. Ferioli, M., Zauli, G., Martelli, A. M., Vitale, M., McCubrey, J. A., Ultimo, S., … Neri, L. M. (2018). Impact of physical exercise in cancer survivors during and after antineoplastic treatments. Oncotarget9(17), 14005–14034. doi:10.18632/oncotarget.24456
  8. Puetz TW, Herring MP. Differential effects of exercise on cancer-related fatigue during and following treatment: a meta-analysis. Am J Prev Med. 2012;43:e1–24. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.amepre.2012.04.027.
  9. De Moor MH, Beem AL, Stubbe JH, Boomsma DI, De Geus EJ. Regular exercise, anxiety, depression and personality: a population-based study. Prev Med. 2006;42:273–9.
  10. Mehnert A, Veers S, Howaldt D, Braumann KM, Koch U, Schulz KH. Effects of a physical exercise rehabilitation group program on anxiety, depression, body image, and health-related quality of life among breast cancer patients. Onkologie. 2011;34:248–53. https://doi.org/10.1159/000327813. [PubMed] [Google Scholar]
  11. Quist M, Adamsen L, Rorth M, Laursen JH, Christensen KB, Langer SW. The impact of a multidimensional exercise intervention on physical and functional capacity, anxiety, and depression in patients with advanced-stage lung cancer undergoing chemotherapy. Integr Cancer Ther. 2015;14:341–9. https://doi.org/10.1177/1534735415572887. [PubMed] [Google Scholar]
  12. Courneya KS, Friedenreich CM, Quinney HA, Fields AL, Jones LW, Fairey AS. A randomized trial of exercise and quality of life in colorectal cancer survivors. Eur J Cancer Care (Engl) 2003;12:347–57. [PubMed] [Google Scholar]
  13. Rizzo A. (2016). The Role of Exercise and Rehabilitation in the Cancer Care Plan. Journal of the advanced practitioner in oncology, 7(3), 339–342.

Recommended Reading

LAF Group Leagues is What Your Life Has Been Missing

LAF Group Leagues is What Your Life Has Been Missing

They say there’s nothing wrong with a little healthy competition, and we couldn’t agree more! Whether you have a competitive spirit or you’re looking to meet some new people, LA Fitness Group Leagues is for you!

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a beginner or a more advanced athlete, we have a division that will fit you. From basketball to racquetball and volleyball, our gleaming courts beckon you to bring your A-game.

How to Join

The easiest way to sign up for a Group League is at the front desk of your local club. You can also sign up for a league online by clicking here!

Leagues Offered

Cost to Play

Basketball: 8-10-week league – $89 per member

Racquetball: 12-week league – $40 per member

Volleyball: 8-10-week league – $30 per member



“I have been playing in LA Fitness Group Leagues since moving to California in 2008.  From that time, I’ve had the privilege of participating in basketball, volleyball, and even a racquetball league. I have always found LA Fitness Group Leagues to be a great place to compete and socialize with like-minded people. To this day, some of my best friends were met through the leagues at LA Fitness. If you’re on the fence, talk about it with one of the knowledgeable Sports Directors who can get you plugged in. It will add so much to your daily life.”

Lane C.

Basketball, Volleyball, and Racquetball, LAF Group Leagues

“I have been playing for LA Fitness Leagues since I moved to California over seven years ago – mostly basketball, but volleyball as well. I first joined at the urging of my wife, since we moved to a new state where I knew no one, and it turned out to be a great idea as many of the friends I still have today were made through those leagues. I also found it a great way to motivate myself to get to the gym since I have a team relying on me.” 

Jason R.

Basketball and Volleyball, LAF Group Leagues

“Ever since I joined the basketball league at LA Fitness, I have looked forward to Tuesday nights when our league is in season. I really enjoy the strong competition and healthy camaraderie among all the players. I’ve been playing for 4 years now and have no plans on stopping anytime soon.”

Keith G.

Basketball , LAF Group Leagues

For more information please visit https://www.lafitness.com/Pages/Leagues.aspx or reach out to your local LA Fitness front desk staff.

*While the opinions herein are Lane C., Jason R., and Keith G.’s own, Lane C., Jason R., and Keith G. are employees of LA Fitness and receive complimentary memberships in connection with their employment.

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The Plant-Based Diet: What You Need to Know – Podcast Ep. 27

The Plant-Based Diet: What You Need to Know – Podcast Ep. 27

Welcome to the 27th episode of the Living Healthy Podcast, presented by LA Fitness.

On this episode of the Living Healthy Podcast, we’re discussing what a plant-based diet is, how it differs from a vegetarian diet, and whether or not you should try it!

How Are We Doing? 

This podcast should not replace any exercise program or restrictions, any dietary supplements or restrictions, or any other medical recommendations from your primary care physician. Before starting any exercise program or diet, make sure it is approved by your doctor.

Timecard Markers – PlantBased Diets – Podcast Ep. 27   


Begins at 0:01     

Introduction of LAF Registered Dietitian, Debbie James 


What is The Plant-Based Diet? 


Is it Different from Following a Vegetarian or Vegan Diet? 


Is There a Healthier Meat You Should Lean Towards Eating When Following This Plan? 


How Often Should You Include Meat in a Plant-Based Eating Plan? 


What Are the Benefits of Following a Plant-Based Eating Style? 


Should All the Veggies You Eat Be Organic? 


Where Do Potatoes Fall into This? 


Is the Plant-Based Diet for Everyone? Can Everyone Benefit from Following This Style of Eating? 


Do You Have to Eat More Frequently? 


Some Plant-Based Meal Suggestions 


Plant-Based Meats – Are These Healthy Options? 


Would Someone Following a Plant-Based Eating Style Have to Supplement? 


When Can You Go for More Information? 


Actionable Advice 




Recommended Podcast Episodes 



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