Adam Lever says Hello! – Physical Activity Autumn Intern

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My name is Adam Lever and I have recently been appointed Physical Activity Intern for the next three months, yay!!! So about me. I guess the best place to start as to how I ended up at Macmillan is about 5 years ago…

Back in 2011, six weeks after starting studying at university, I was diagnosed with a form of bone cancer in my left leg. As an active individual and keen sportsman, this came as a massive shock to myself, family and friends. My treatment involved six cycles of high dose chemotherapy, six hours of surgery and lots of gruelling hours working with physiotherapists. My road to recovery began in 2013 which was also the year I returned to my studies. This year I finally graduated from Leeds Beckett University with a first-class degree in Sport and Exercise Science something, at times, I never thought was possible.

Areas of interest to me at university included using behaviour change theory to increase and sustain physical activity behaviour and the role physical activity can play in the regulation and rehabilitation of a range of health diseases – I elected to study physical activity interventions with cancer patients in more detail in my final year. Alongside my studies, I also engaged in a variety of voluntary work for local charities in Leeds. This work, combined with my personal experience of cancer, has sparked my desire to work within the charity and public health sector and to help Macmillan achieve their ambition of “reaching and improving the lives of everyone living with cancer.”

I am honoured to join the Physical Activity team at Macmillan who have made me feel extremely welcome from day one. I look forward to developing my knowledge of behaviour change theory, physical activity and cancer. I am also extremely excited to work on projects such as the development of volunteer roles to support people living with and beyond cancer to get involved in physical activity!

 

Welcome Sara White – Physical Activity Autumn Intern

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Hi, my name is Sara White and I am one of the new physical activity interns joining the team until the end of December. I recently graduated from UCL with a degree in medicine – although there were aspects of the course I loved I decided that being a doctor wasn’t right for me. However, I am still passionate about health and wellbeing, especially the idea of taking a holistic approach to preventing and managing illness, which is why the work of the physical activity team particularly interests me.

As part of my degree I was fortunate enough to spend some time at the UCH Macmillan Cancer Centre, where I got to see first-hand the breadth of services, information and support that Macmillan provides, as well as meet some of the people accessing these services. This made me appreciate the amazing work that Macmillan does and I feel very lucky and proud to now be volunteering for an organisation that makes such a positive difference to people’s lives.

During my internship, I will be working closely with the Ramblers Association in the Walking for Health programme. They provide short walks throughout the country to help support people with cancer, as well as other long term health conditions, to get active and stay active. I have already taken part in walk leader training and will be working to try and recruit more GP practices to deliver and/or signpost to health walks in their local area.

I never used to do much physical activity myself, but three years ago my brother bought me some personal training sessions and now I’m hooked! I found it not only helped improve my fitness but also made me feel so much happier and healthier. I particularly enjoy running and boxing – it helps me get any frustration out after a stressful day! I’m so happy to be a part of the physical activity team; everyone has been so welcoming and I’m looking forward to the next few weeks!