Cycling for Cancer Survivors

The cancer survivors who arrived at the Baylor-Tom Landry Fitness Center on Sept. 28 had not come to share their harrowing experiences. Instead, they had gathered to celebrate life.

They weren't alone. More than 100 cyclists — some cancer survivors, others supporters of their brave comrades — joined together on the beautiful September Saturday to laugh, joke and sweat as they rode stationary bikes outdoors at the Baylor-Tom Landry Fitness Center, a 105,000-square-foot facility serving approximately 6,000 members in Dallas/Fort Worth.

The cancer victims showed off their determination and will to live, and, with the rest of participants, cycled from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. to increase awareness for CanSurvive (formerly TeamSurvivor), a monitored exercise rehabilitation program that provides support for cancer victims — men and women of different ages either going through treatment or in various stages of recovery.

One of the few facilities granted the name of the legendary Dallas Cowboys head coach, the Baylor-Tom Landry Fitness Center supports extensive health and wellness initiatives, such as CanSurvive. Through this outreach program, participants gain a sense of power and accomplishment as they recover from cancer.

With its monitored exercise component, CanSurvive helps to build strength and fitness, which counteracts fatigue and other side effects of cancer treatment. “As a medically based fitness facility, we encourage exercise to be a part of a survivor's routine if advised by their doctor,” says Mark Stevens, managing director of the Baylor-Tom Landry Fitness Center. “Research has supported that exercise provides physical and psychological benefits to individuals who are undergoing or have undergone cancer treatments. We are excited to grow our CanSurvive program as ancillary to our health and fitness programming.”

In addition to monitored exercise, CanSurvive includes peer groups that offer emotional and social support. This peer support, combined with fitness enhancement, allows CanSurvive participants to emerge from their cancer experience with increased confidence, sense of control and self-determination, as well as a new perception of their capabilities.

The September cycling event not only publicized CanSurvive, it raised more than $10,000 in cash and in-kind services for the cause. And this won't be the last fund-raiser for the program. Baylor-Tom Landry Fitness Center has already scheduled “Saddle Up for CanSurvive” for Oct. 5. The event promises upbeat music, energizing snacks, and an atmosphere of fun and physical challenge.

REACHING OUT

Has your club done something in your community that you're proud of? Have you gone beyond the call of duty to help a member overcome numerous obstacles? If so, we want to know about it. Contact Jerry Janda at Club Industry, Community Builders, One Plymouth Meeting, Suite 501, Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462. E-mail: jjanda@primediabusiness.com. Fax: (610) 238-0992.