Tag Archives: wellness


Have you seen my dehydration article? Dehydration, it WILL Happen…

#dehydration #hydration #drinkwater #health #diet #sports #fitness #outrdoors #summer #training

Lymphedema and Swimming


Karen holding her book, Lymphedema: Sentenced to Life in Bed, but I Escaped.

Swimming to reduce leg lymphedema….

For years I’ve been telling people with Leg Lymphedema that the best exercise to reduce the swelling is swimming. Why? There are a few reasons swimming is the best exercise.

One, because you are horizontal when swimming rather than vertical and your leg below your torso. This is similar to when you are lying down or elevating your leg to reduce the swelling.

Two, when swimming your bodily fluids are circulating. The movement of the limbs and muscles are creating a force to move the fluids throughout your body. The movement of kicking while swimming is helping to push the fluids out of your leg. Your blood and lymphatic fluid are being moved more rapidly when swimming rather than sitting or lying down.

Three, the water itself offers a gentle compression when in a pool. It is more gentle than a compression stocking, but it is still helpful for when you stand in the pool in between swimming. Swimming is great, but even standing and moving your leg through the water is helpful.

And four, swimming is non-impact. That means, your foot is not striking the floor with each step as it is with walking or running. Walking and running actually cause leg lymphedema to become worse because of all of the pounding/impact and gravity. Yes, they help circulation a little, but the impact causes the fluids to be packed down into the leg rather than pushing the fluids out of the leg. Your body is vertical and the fluids run down. Swimming is very gentle and effective for those of us with leg lymphedema compared to any other aerobic exercise.

I’ve been dealing with leg lymphedema since my 1991 cancer surgery. At the time, I already had a physical therapy degree, was a fitness trainer, and a gymnastics coach. I knew how the body functioned.

I had malignant melanoma in my right thigh. I was told that I would be bed-ridden for the rest of my life by many doctors after cancer surgery. The surgery was the only way to save my life. That was if it wasn’t already too late. The doctor was not sure if the cancer had already spread to my lymph nodes and throughout my body. If it had, it would have been too late. Going into the surgery I did not know whether I had weeks to live or a lifetime of being in bed.

The doctors removed the malignant tumor and the lymph nodes from my groin area during the surgery. It was two surgeries combined that lasted many hours. Immediately after the surgery, my leg was as wide as my waist. I had a tree trunk and a long way to go to reduce it to normal size. My life was saved, but my leg and life were forever changed. It took nearly one year to reduce my leg to almost normal size. I have maintained my leg lymphedema extremely well because I am so disciplined.

A few quick tips for reducing the swelling… elevate, compression, circulation/light exercise, and a very healthy diet of various fruits and vegetables – that’s the secret to reducing the swelling and keeping it down. Eat foods such as fruits and vegetables. Stay away from processed foods, fast-foods, junk foods, alcohol, soda, and other unhealthy foods.

I studied physical therapy in college and have been a CSCS for many years. I know how to maintain health and recover from illness and injury. I admit, my knowledge has made it easier for me to maintain my leg lymphedema, but you can do it too.

What prompted me to write this today? I go all winter long wishing I had access to a pool so I can maintain my lymphedema better. This week the pool opened and I paid for my pool pass. I’ll be able to keep my leg looking and feeling good, hardly any swelling on non-working days. YAY!!!

I swam for the first time this summer yesterday and my leg felt and looked great afterward. Elevating today and it feels good. Can’t wait to go to my ballroom dance social later this evening!me-swimsuit-xs

Anyone in NJ with leg lymphedema that wants to talk, meet for a quick swim, or needs a little bit of help just reach out to me. My schedule is very sporadic and constantly changing, but we will connect if you reach out.

Read about my journey with cancer surgery and lymphedema here, www.lymphedemabook.com

Legs Plus Mini-Workout, 5 minutes!

Legs Plus Mini-Workout… Try it!

Sample mini-workout to see the effects of Legs Plus. Do all three exercise and then do  all three again without rest.




And please remember, what you eat will have a GREAT effect on your overall health and weight.

Stay healthy, stay happy, and have a wonderful New Year…

Legs Plus was created by Karen Goeller, CSCS in 2007. Contact her for book signings, speaking engagements, spokesperson roles, consulting in sports and fitness, or training.

You are responsible for your own safety. Stop if you feel dizzy, nauseous, ill, or injured. Do not perform if you have a history of back pain. See more details and specific instructions in the book.

#exercise #fitness #workouts #legs #core #weightloss #legsplus #gifts #books #newyear #resolutions

Wellness Professionals are Often Just Sales People

Wellness Professionals are Often Just Sales People…

fruit-clipartSo sorry, but you are NOT a “wellness professional” if you cannot spell the word wellness and you are very out of shape. You are most likely a network marketer/sales person selling vitamins or health related products!

This problem is getting worse, people who are not qualified are taking your health in their hands. And their wallets are getting fatter in the process! With many of these network marketers, their ONLY goal is to grow their income, not to make people more healthy. And they will follow the sales script in order to get YOU to buy their products. Some will go as far as say they use the products. Really, are they the spitting image of health? Do they really lead a healthy lifestyle? With many of these network marketing companies there is no education or certification necessary to sell products that can drastically effect YOUR health. So not only is your wallet at risk, your health could be at risk too!

Why does this bother me? Because people trust that you have the education and experience necessary to SAFELY and EFFECTIVELY guide you to better health. They “they say” form of advice is often not the best advice and often not backed by science. That advice often becomes popular with good marketing, not necessarily good science or safe results. I saw one coach forcing the athletes to use a network marketing product that was not designed for kids in an effort to increase her income. They were not allowed to train on the team unless they used these products. The amount of protein (and likely chemicals) in the product was very high, much too high for a ten year old’s kidneys and liver to process on a daily basis. Some parents reached out to me telling me of their child’s digestive upsets and issues shortly after they started using the products. That is just one example of a network marketer pushing products rather than really helping a person with specific dietary needs. There are so many stories like this one and some people not realizing the damage until much later.

When you put your trust in someone to guide you to better health ask them what college they attended, where they got their training, what certification/license they hold, how long they have been guiding people in wellness, references of past/successful clients, and what their college degree is in BEFORE you trust their SALES PITCH.

The two people I trust for nutritional advice are Dr Joe Kasper and D Fred Bisci. Google them and you’ll find a wealth of science based and accurate information. I am pretty sure both still do phone consultations. Be sure to tell them that I recommended them!

Best of luck reaching your health and fitness goals… And be careful who you trust with YOUR HEALTH!

Karen Goeller, CSCS

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