Pokemon Go gives this breast cancer patient a reason to 'get off the couch'

A Toronto woman has incorporated Pokemon Go into her cancer treatment plan.

Son told her to download the app to give her a reason to walk outside

Lisa Freedman says she enjoys finding Pokemon during her walks. (Handout/Canadian Press)

Toronto woman has incorporated Pokemon Go into her cancer treatment plan.

Sixty-year-old Lisa Freedman, a lawyer, has to walk at least 20 minutes a day to help recover from the radiation used to treat her breast cancer.

But the treatment has left her fatigued.

"I have no energy to get off the couch," she said. And when she did find the energy to go on walks, she said it was

"When I walked, I didn't have a purpose," she said. "All I'd think about was, 'I'm walking so my cancer symptoms will get better."'

So her 22-year-old son told her to download the mobile Pokemon Go app to give her a reason to walk around outside.

The cellphone-based game sends players into the real world to search for digital monsters, who appear on screen when users hold up their iPhones or Android devices in various locations at various times.

"For the last couple of days I've been happily walking around the neighbourhood, finding Pokemon," Freedman said.

"This way I'm not thinking about the cancer and, you know, it's fun."

But she says her best catch so far was her first. It pops up when you first register for an account, wherever you happen to be. And Freedman was in bed.

"So you open it up, and there's a Pokemon right beside you, staring right beside you. That just kind of got me addicted immediately."

Freedman said she isn't a long-time Pokemon fan herself, but she watched her son play the games and watch the TV show as he was growing up — the original video game was launched in Japan in 1996, according to the franchise's official website.

But she is a video game fan. She said she plays Mario Kart and sports games with her son, but she's not a huge fan of fighting games.

Freedman said she thinks Pokemon Go should be advertised as a fitness app so that other people outside the game's target demographic can benefit from it like she has.