This is head check time. Poop or get off the pot! I need to keep my focus and stead go its in my vegan diet and recovery training plan. The diet has been good for almost a year now. Changing over to a whole plant based diet from my past meat/dairy/fat laden based diet has been relatively easy. I would never had imagined that if someone had told me I would be doing that just a few months before I switched over. While most of my prior SAD (Standard American Diet) was not the most healthy, I did always like vegetables and fruit, and I also avoided white breads, rice, and potatoes (except for lots of french fries!). So there was at least some prior appreciation of whole plant foods. With all the physical pain I was experiencing beginning last February, I was highly motivated to do anything to help myself. After about two months of testing, two operations (TURPS), and wearing a Foley Catheter all during that time, (plus two more months before it was finally successfully removed) I was given the bad news that I had Fourth Stage Prostate Cancer. If someone could have told me that there was scientific evidence that eating bull manure would save my life, I would have done it! Whatever it would take!
Luckily I discovered lots of scientific evidence about the benefits of a vegan diet in fighting cancer. Beside the "Intellectual" understanding about vegan diet and fighting cancer, physically I "knew" I was on the right path almost immediately the first few weeks of my new diet. My energy, my feelings of having a clearer head and thinking, and even my bowels elimination process had greatly improved! And I just felt more empowered in fighting my cancer. This was something I could do instead of passively waiting around to die!
Now I also decided to trust my Doctors and accept conventional medicine approach to treat my cancer. I agreed to undergo the 8 1/2 weeks of radiation treatment and I also started my hormone (Testosterone) depletion therapy. I knew going into it that this was going to make me very weak but I really had no idea how much! I went from being one of the world's most strongest men for my age Masters Class (60- 65 yrs) SHW (Super Heavy Weight) to barely able get up off a chair with great effort.
Even though I was a big man, my body was very solid a year ago but now I am very flabby. I have lost so much muscle mass and replaced it with fat! I have lost about 55-60 pounds over the past year but I think most of that was muscle! This has at times been very discouraging to me but I have been able to wrap my head around it and decide I can fight back against that too! When I was first diagnosed with my cancer, I was in so much pain, I couldn't exercise. Also wearing the Foley Catheter prevented me from doing anything except for some short walks but even that was very uncomfortable! My treatments were leaving me feel so weak, even if I didn't have that catheter I could not have done much more than that anyways. The last two months I was wearing the catheter, my Urologist tried to slowly try to get me off the catheter. Every time he removed it, I was unable to urinate on my own and had to go back on it within a few hours. I was also having a lot of blood clots that blocked the catheter that were very painful so I had to have the catheter changed several time to remove the blockage. I also learned how to unblock them myself by injecting sterile solution back up the tube to break loose the clot in my bladder so I could pass my urine again! What an ordeal! At this point after more than a year dealing with all of this, I can hardly believe all of this has happened to me and I have somehow muddled my way through it all!
I think my taking stock of all of this and realizing how much I have been able to over come is very vital in my gathering my resolve to continue on my path to recovery! And my recovery has been a roller coaster ride. Many successes and many relapses or set backs. My wife and I went on a Cruse at the end of November for a week to celebrate my progress recovering. We had a great time and was a real affirmation of life and our hope for the future! And a week after we got back is when I had my big fall and had my major concussion that set me back so far. But back up and at it again. I gain some physical conditioning back for awhile and then I'm set back. I did a lot of walking in preparation for our cruse and of course a lot of walking while we were on it. Then I'm unable to walk hardly at all while I was recovering from my concussion. My sensitivity to light, noise, and nausea keep me house bound sitting in a dark room for several weeks. I couldn't take any of my supplements and my PSA went back up somewhat. From my low of .5 this past Fall up to 8.12 in February. That was a real blow to my confidence that I was beating my cancer. But at least that is way lower of my high of 47.2 last March! My cancer Doctor had even told me that she thought I was "disease free" in my last office visit with her if my PSA came back as low as it had been in the Fall. Then a week later she called me with the bad news that my PSA was back up. Talk about a roller coaster ride!
So it goes. No one gets better in a straight line! There will be the ups and downs but hopefully gradually upward.
So I must remember how far I have come. I must keep striving to improve even if I had new bumps in the road. I can't let this defeat me. I must slowly add my physical exercises to support my gains from my diet. I got to keep putting it all together to win! I must regain some of my muscle mass to speed up my metabolism once again. I know a few guys who have gone on the hormone depletion therapy who gain lots of weight besides loss of their muscle mass and ended up having heart attacks and one even had a stroke. I must slowly lose more weight for many health reasons. So it goes! So it goes!