Summer living and fair weather are in full swing and along with it comes spending time outdoors with leisure and fitness activities. To that end, I trust that all of you are enjoying helping others in their pursuit of good health. Regardless of whether you see your clients indoors, outdoors, one at a time, or in a group setting, the passion, knowledge, and skills you pass along to others do much relative to improving the fitness, nutrition, and the quality of life of those we work with.
Although the three feature articles in this issue may appear somewhat unrelated, they are grouped together for several reasons. First, the article by Dori Pekmezi, Ph.D., Michelle Y. Martin, Ph.D., Elizabeth Kvale, M.D., Karen Meneses, Ph.D., R.N., FAAN, and Wendy Demark-Wahnefried, Ph.D., R.D., titled “Making a Difference: Enhancing Exercise Adherence for Breast Cancer Survivors” is pivotal because it not only addresses the difficulties and challenging barriers associated with exercise adherence, an issue that all of us struggle with, but it also emphasizes the important role that exercise plays in the care of patients recovering from breast cancer. A condition where both the disease and the therapies used to treat the disease often combine to insult the body, mind, and spirit of those affected.
This brings us to our second feature article by James A. Blumenthal, Ph.D., Patrick J. Smith, Ph.D., and Benson M. Hoffman, Ph.D. In “Opinion and Evidence: Is Exercise a Viable Treatment for Depression?,” they discuss the important role that exercise plays in the treatment of depression, a condition that is common among not only patients being treated for cancer but across the full spectrum of apparently healthy people and those with a chronic disease. Depression affects many aspects of life, from properly taking care of one’s self to adherence to healthy behaviors and prescribed medications. Clearly, as doctors Blumenthal, Smith, and Hoffman point out, engaging those with depression (and depression-like symptoms) in a regular exercise program can play a beneficial and therapeutic role.
Last but not the least, regardless of the type of cancer, many cancer survivors are challenged with having to lose weight or keep it off once lost. To that end, our third feature article, “Too Good to Be True? Eating More and Losing Weight With a Low-Energy-Dense Diet,” by Whitney Sweat, M.S., R.D., and Melinda M. Manore, Ph.D., R.D., CSSD, discusses the simple premise of eating lower density foods as a means to eat more and still lose weight.
Before closing, I would like to introduce my good friend and colleague, Ann M. Swank, Ph.D., from the University of Louisville. Dr. Swank has graciously agreed to assume writing duties for the Clinical Applications column for the Journal. Her first column, entitled “Maintaining Your Fitness Gains: When Less Really Is More,” fits right in for those of us working in the health fitness field. I trust you’ll enjoy her writing now and in the future. Please also see the accompanying insert, which describes all of the columns found in this issue of the Journal.
I close by wishing each of you a summer filled with much health, fun, and fitness.
Our associate editors continue to do an outstanding job of providing well-written summaries on a wide variety of topics of importance to the fitness professional.
- Fitness Focus: This copy-and-share column discusses walking with poles.
- Wouldn’t You Like to Know: Could you give me some background on aqua running? Will this type of exercise be of value for my running program? Do you have any suggestions on how to maximize benefits with this type of exercise?
- On the Floor: Tailored Exercise for Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Participants
- ACSM Certification: It’s Time for a Change … Behavior Change
- Clinical Applications: Maintaining Your Fitness Gains: When Less Really Is More
- Medical Report: What Every Fitness Professional Should Know About Concussion in Sport
- Take Ten: 10 Nice-to-Know Facts About Caffeine
Steven J. Keteyian, Ph.D., FACSM
Henry Ford Hospital