The irony, I had 20 years of experience as a palliative care nurse, five years as a lead cancer nurse and recently qualified as a cancer rehabilitation exercise specialist.
Well, we had a choice and we took a brave route. We took all my husband’s critical illness cover money and we built two gyms (www.forefrontfitness.co.uk). Our strapline is ‘Helping you to be your best’ and that is what we have done. We have set out to help others affected by cancer to regain and keep control of their lives.
We also aim to help others reduce their risk of developing cancer and other diseases and that means showing them what they can do to help themselves. We use World Cancer Research Fund’s excellent resources in our gyms and we often see people reading them. The posters are a perfect way of raising awareness, they are visually appealing and the information is accessible.
World Cancer Research Fund fits well with our ethos of giving people up-to-date and accurate information so that they can make informed choices. We spend our days encouraging people to be appropriately active and to watch their diet and alcohol intake. We are very open about my husband’s diagnosis and prognosis (not great – he is now Stage 4 on immunotherapy) so cancer is openly discussed. We talk about how healthy lifestyle choices can help reduce the risk of certain cancers as well as improve quality of life for survivors.
We have just launched our new website, www.alltogetherbetter.co.uk, which helps people to manage their weight and keep active and healthy. We strongly believe that small lifestyle changes can add up to make a big difference and so, as Champions, we are keen to help World Cancer Research Fund spread their cancer prevention messages.
We don’t know what lies ahead but we do know that information and education is key to helping us all to be as fit and healthy as possible.