Allison is an MD, PhD and a fellow in Medical Oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. In this fascinating conversation, we talk about how exercise may affect tumor vasculature and improve the delivery of common cancer treatments. Allison’s work (along with folks such as Lee Jones) is leading the way in looking to the mechanisms of how exercise can modify the tumor microenvironment.


As a clinician, Allison talks about how the role of exercise in cancer care is viewed through the lens of oncologists. We have a great chat about how if we’re going to view exercise as medicine, we need to treat it with the same rigor we do with any other drug. A huge thanks to Allison for donating her time and offering a unique perspective to exercise oncology!

Ep 31. Sam Ryan, Radiation Therapist: Body weight changes affect during radiation can affect the accuracy of treatment.

Sam Ryan is a radiation therapist with extensive experience, working daily with cancer patients receiving radiation treatment to ensure they’re getting the highest quality treatment. Sam reached out to me after hearing some of our episodes, and did a great job of educating me on how body weight changes during treatment can affect both the accuracy and effectiveness of radiation therapy.


Some of their margins for error can be less than 2mm, so it’s easy to see how swings in bodyweight either way, may change the shape of the body and shift the targeted area. A really important discussion for anyone working with cancer patients. A huge thanks to Sam for the chat and sharing her knowledge!


Get in touch with Sam at

Ep 30. Nicole Stout, DPT: Lymphedema and a prospective surveillance model of cancer rehab.

Nicole is a physical therapist who specializes in cancer rehabilitation. She has done an incredible amount of work in the area of lymphedema and working to improve this area of cancer care.


We chat about what lymphedema is, recognizing signs and symptoms, and common exercises used to treat it. We also talk about Nicole’s work using a prospective surveillance model or rehabilitation, screening for and treating issues as they arise. This progressive model can drastically reduce the physical and financial burden of rehab for patients, getting back to full health quicker.

EP 29. Erica Mantell: acute lymphoblastic leukemia survivor, 3rd year medical student.

Erica was diagnosed with a rare form of leukemia the last semester of her senior year of college, after months of false tests and uncertainty. A little over 3 years on, Erica is now a third year medical student at Ohio State, currently finishing up her clinical rotations. We chat about her incredible from before her diagnosis, through a grueling treatment regimen, to where she is now.


I can’t thank Erica enough for her honesty in sharing her story, I’m sure people will take a lot from this!


Ep 28. I'm a cancer patient/survivor, where can I find a fitness professional to help me?

I often get asked by patients and survivors where they can go to find a trainer with a background or understanding of cancer. 

It's a great question that has a longer answer. The field is still new, so there's not a lot of us out there yet, but that doesn't mean you can find a great trainer with different background expertise that can help you a lot. Similarly, a lot of people with the most "expertise" tend to be researchers, so they don't have the time to be hands on personal trainers. I chat about this, what to look for in a good coach/trainer and more. 


Ep 27: Dr. Mike DeLisio: PhD in exercise physiology, myxoid liposarcoma survivor

Dr. Mike DeLisio is an Assistant Professor at the University of Ottawa, focusing on how exercise alters stem cell interactions with their niche in the context of cancer and cancer therapy. Mike is also a cancer survivor, 4 years removed from a diagnosis of myxoid liposarcoma, a pretty rare form of fat cancer. Mike was 30 years old fresh out of his PhD in exercise physiology when he first got diagnosed. In typical young male fashion, he didn’t want any sympathy or pity and just chose to dig his heels in, push through his treatment without telling many people. We end up having a great chat about his mindset during his diagnosis, the treatment and how much of a psychological effect of these factors around cancer can have. He also gives an interesting insight into how his diagnosis and the thought of recurrence affect some of his bigger life decisions.


I can’t thank Mike enough for his honesty, I think a lot of people will take a great deal from his story.


Ep 26: Louise Brennan, PhD researcher. Technology and cancer rehab/fixing upper limb dysfunction post surgery.

Louise is a Chartered Physiotherapist who received a BSc in Physiotherapy from Trinity College Dublin in 2009. Since then, she has been working clinically in the National Health Service in London and Kent. In this episode, we chat about the CATCH ITN project, funding 8 PhD researchers, and how technology can work in cancer rehab. We also chat about how Louise works with cancer patients directly after to surgery to improve upper limb dysfunction. Louise gives a great insight into some of the strategies employed to improve function in the affected limb as soon as the day after surgery.


Ep 25. Dr. Colleen Spees. The Hope Garden, diet, red meat and cancer care.

This was one of my favorite episodes yet! Colleen is doing some incredible things at the Hope Garden in Columbus, providing cancer patients and survivors access to harvest fruits and vegetables. The best thing about this garden is that it is free for any cancer patient or survivor, even those who aren’t treated at Ohio State, or aren’t participating in a study. So, if you know of someone who might be interest, pass them on the info below! One of the most interesting things we talk about is a current study they’re working with where they’re actually providing cancer patients and survivors with 16 ounces of red meat a week and looking its effects on a variety of health outcomes. The red eat and cancer risk is a hot topic, but has a lot of misconceptions and is not as clear cut as the media tries to make it, so it was great to be able to dive into that with Colleen.  


Keep up with the Hope Garden here: