Tag Archives: Lymphoma

Beef Cake to Beef Jerky

-Pinch Tests-
Suprailiac(“Love Handle”):55(-)
Body Fat%:7.3%7.3%(-)
Body Weight:183lbs163lbs(-20lbs)
Body Fat:12.6lbs12.2lbs(-0.4lbs)
Lean Body Mass (pure muscle weight):163.4lbs154.8lbs(-8.6in)
-General Fitness-
Push-ups(to exhaustion)4015(-25)
Resting Heart Rate60bpm85-90bpm(-30bpm)
Heart Rate(1min after 3min Step Test 96bpm cadence)65bpm115bpm(-50bpm)

Above are the results from my fitness evaluation today at the gym. It compares results from last year. My previous high weight was 185lbs with 7% body fat. My low during chemo was 155lbs, that’s a drastic 30lb swing. Now most people would love to lose 30lbs. However I was at an almost ideal body fat percent of 7%. If you noticed, I’ve stayed there. I’ve gained back almost 9lbs from my last treatment due to getting my appetite back and drinking more fluids throughout the day. I don’t feel so dehydrated and I’m not getting muscle cramps anymore. The reason I mention my body fat % and show how it hasn’t changed is because that 30lb loss is pure muscle. I lost 30lbs in 6 months of treatment which originally took me two years to put on!

It’s frustrating and a bit depressing, but I know I can put it back on, and much faster than I did the first time around. For all those doctors, insurance companies, and people that can’t seem to keep their weight where they want to; STOP LOOKING AT IT! I put up my BMI as a joke. The BMI is the most useless piece of information you can give to someone, doctors and insurance companies really need to stop using this, but I digress. For those that want to “lose weight” you really need to be figuring out your body fat percentage, get off of the treadmill, and start lift weights. Yes you too ladies. Body fat % is easily found by doing simple pinch tests with a pair of calipers, such as these inexpensive ones.

If you are wondering why I say you need to stop looking at your weight, it is because your weight doesn’t give you a good idea of what your body is made of. If you look at my chart above you can see that my 7% body fat tells me that I am made up of 154lbs of pure muscle(and a little bit of water, bone, and organ weight). The other 12lbs is made up of fat. This comparison is waaay more important than a silly weight number. If you want to look good you need to pay attention to the relationship of muscle vs. fat or your body fat %. If, and when, you start lifting instead of plodding along on a treadmill all the time to “lose weight” you may actually gain weight! Oh no, you didn’t want that did you!?! Well muscle weights more than fat, and if you gain muscle which doesn’t burn fat per se, but it helps “light your engine” to burn fat, then yes you may end up weighting more. But you’ll drop pant size, you’ll look better, you won’t have flabby chicken under-arms, and no you won’t look gross and bulky. Don’t believe me? Either read this book or check out these chicks who figured out that lifting is the trick, matter of fact do both! I’m not apologizing for this rant, our society has royally screwed the way women think about their bodies and how to actually take care of them. That goes for you too guys: Read and read.

I knew this was going to happen, that’s why I posted this article before I started my chemo treatment. But I’ve started back up at the gym. I can’t lift as much, but it feels good to get back into it. The hardest thing so far has been cardio as you can see by the big change in my resting heart rate. I try to warm up by doing a few laps (1/4mi) around the track before lifting. This short distance is quite a feat! My goal is to try and run the 5k at Race for the Cure on Mother’s Day. I may have a month and a half to prepare, but it seems like a big hurdle for me right now.

The only reason that I pay attention to my weight is because I want to gain it. My body fat % is right where I want it and right where it should be. I’m trying to gain back the 20-25lbs of muscle loss in six months. I’ll check back in and let you know it I hit my goal in October.

And for any of you nay-sayers that think it’s easy being my size, trust me it’s not. I’m a lanky skinny dude that had to work his ass off for two years to gain 25lbs. Don’t tell me it’s easy for me to gain weight and hard for you to lose it. It’s the same work just different goals.

Ready or not, here I come!

Well today was the last business day off so to speak. I enjoyed this last day of winter and last official day off freedom by burning my big bald head out in the sun!

I return to the real world on Monday by returning to work. I’m looking forward to it though, I think the steady schedule will help me feel like a human to tell you the truth. The last three months were brutal and it’d be good to dive into something to kinda forget about all of that.

I have one more major test coming up next month which will help alleviate that last bit of unknown stress. However for now I can focus on living again. Don’t get me wrong I will never forget what has happened to me. Not many people get the chance to face their mortality in such a long drawn out process. It actually should somehow make you feel better about those that go quickly….er, this is turning morbid.

I just wanted to say that you may see me more, and I’m taking that as a good thing. Watch out Beaver county I’m out and about again so deal with it!

I Can't Sleep!

I feel bad that I haven’t been nice enough to update everyone on my status after that brief posting I gave two weeks ago. Since then I’ve made it through another treatment and even a small cold. The cold knocked me out this entire past weekend. I spent it on the couch. I had high hopes to work on the basement and you know, feel semi-normal, but my body didn’t get the memo. It made me a little nervous, because I can’t imagine how I would feel if I got really sick. I guess that’s why they tell Sara to rush me to the E.R. if I’m having a fever.

It’s annoying not knowing what the new day will bring. Everyday something rears its ugly head and makes me miserable in some fashion.  I’m not trying to be pessimistic either, I just have to admit how completely wacked out my body is right now. It’s scary feeling so out of touch and out of control of the form you are trying to live in.

Tomorrow I go in for a CT scan in Cranberry. This will be the first true test to measure if my enlarged lymph nodes in my neck, armpits, back, and pelvis are receding. During the Steelers victory win tonight I had to drink some of the contrast junk in about 16oz of juice before going to bed. It must be pretty nasty if it had to be masked by that much juice and the fact that the juice didn’t really taste like juice afterwards. What’s even more fun is that I get to do it again in the morning before we head out to the test. At least there is a Denny’s breakfast to look forward to with my honey!

I’m not sure if it’s that junk that I drank, but it’s 2:45am and I can’t sleep!! Hello people I have to go to work after that scan. I hate not being able to sleep. It’s been less lately especially with the cold, thankfully that’s dissipating.

I met with my ENT (ear-nose-throat) doctor last Friday to check out my incision and just see how treatments are going in general. He seemed pleased with how I looked and felt, but it’s very hit or miss with me right now, he must have caught me at a good hour. He did check for lumps in my neck/trap area and said that he couldn’t really feel anything out of the normal range. So that was a good thing to hear! Let’s hope the scan tomorrow confirms that! We’ll go over the results next week before my treatment with my oncologist.

Thanks again to everyone that leaves me comments, sends me cards and emails, and attempts to hug me at church! I sincerely appreciate it, I can’t say it enough. Time to attempt some shut-eye.

Something to Smile About

smileyI felt pretty yucky the first week after my last treatment. I took a few days off because there were a bunch of sick people I should be avoiding at the office. Last week wasn’t so bad though. I actually was able to put in a full work week which was great! I needed to get a lot of work done.

If you didn’t notice it yet, I got my braces off a few days after my last treatment. I get to binge on chewy candy and other tough to eat food again and have! Dr. Kingas did an amazing job in such a short period of time. I only had them on for eight months. Not only did my teeth get all lined up, but my overbite got corrected. Which is pretty amazing because I used to have a severe overbite that I never thought I’d get rid of.

Tomorrow Sara and I meet with the oncologist for the first time since before my treatment started. I’m not really sure what we will be going over, I guess just how I’ve been handling the chemo treatment. Maybe we’ll schedule my next CT/PET scan to see if the cancer is retreating. After we meet with him I’ll get my third treatment. This is another long one where they add the Rituxan to the mix. I’m a little nervous because the last treatment knocked me on my butt pretty hard for the first week. Thank you everyone I’ll let you know how it goes.