FitDay Discussion Boards

FitDay Discussion Boards (/fitness/forums/)
-   Newcomers (http://www.fitday.com/fitness/forums/newcomers/)
-   -   Survivor on a new mission here! (http://www.fitday.com/fitness/forums/newcomers/3066-survivor-new-mission-here.html)

jewelrymaker 01-20-2011 04:52 AM

Survivor on a new mission here!
 
Hi, all! first of all, I am very happy to be here. Please excuse any strange looking words here, as I am using a new voice recognition software and headphones because I have a great deal of difficulty typing due to severe nerve damage in my hands from lots and lots of chemo.

Some time ago, I was diagnosed with advanced breast cancer. I had about a 20% chance of living for another two years. During my treatment, I was on lots of steroids and other medications that made me gain weight. It's interesting, but I've had people ask me how I could gain weight when I had cancer. They assumed that anyone with cancer is simply going to lose lots of weight and become thin and gaunt. Obviously, that's not the case. It depends on the type of cancer and the type of treatments.

Anyway, after going through a lot of hell, I am very happy to say that this month is the five year anniversary of my diagnosis. I made it! Along with all of the problems for medications, however, my doctors also induced menopause to reduce the level of estrogen in my body, because my cancer was 100% estrogen receptor positive. That was when I was 42. I am still on various estrogen reducing drugs and injections, and being an menopause has only made the weight problem worse.

It seems like every day for the past five years, I thought about whether I would live another year or even months or week. So many surgeries, so much chemo and radiation, and so many hospital stays and medical emergencies later, I finally feel like I can take a deep breath and get on with my life. My prognosis is, technically, much better now. So my oncologist says that there is a high probability that the cancer will return, my chances are better than 5050.

So now comes the task of trying to get my life back. When I was in treatment, I was a single mother of a young boy. I was basically all alone except for when my boyfriend would come to visit on weekends. We are now married, with a new house, and a nice little family.

Not only do I hate exercise, but it's very difficult right now. I have several broken bones from when I was in chemo, that didn't heal well. And I also now have severe arthritis in my hips, feet, hands, neck, and back. And my spinal column is degenerating and full of bone spurs. Basically, each day is a challenge full of pain, headaches, feverishness, insomnia, and having to be careful of every step I take lest I fall again and break more bones due to permanent numbness I now have in my feet.

I am thinking of perhaps joining the local 24-hour fitness club. I am wondering if I might be able to use the elliptical, something I've never used before. One of my doctors recommended walking, but even that becomes very painful after a time. What I need is definitely something low impact that doesn't make the joint pain any worse. Or give me any more opportunity to hurt myself!

I tried at Atkins years ago and it worked well for me. However, I tried again several months ago, and lost a total of 2 pounds after three months on phase 1 induction. that was extremely frustrating. And I wasn't cheating, either! It was sort of unbelievable to me.

So now, after going off Atkins, I have been gaining quite a bit of weight. The induction phase didn't work for some reason, perhaps because of all the changes in my body chemistry and metabolism, and even worse than that, I am now much worse off than I was before I started the diet.

I easily go into starvation mode if I cut my calories much below 1200 per day, so now I have started this week two Journal everything I eat and to eat healthy foods throughout the day, with a target caloric total of 1500 per day. I also plan to zigzag the calorie totals a bit to prevent serious plateaus and cessation of weight loss.

So, after having written what is almost a book, I'll just say that I'm very glad to be here, both on this forum and on this planet! I look forward to participating when I am able to, and am happy to report that I've already lost a couple of pounds of this post Atkins weight gain since Monday. I have nearly 70 pounds to lose and sometimes wonder if, given all that's happened and all the changes, I'll ever be able to look good again. I have aged quite a bit since all this started and it is now a long way from my college days when I used to model and fashion shows!

Thanks so much!

mecompco 01-20-2011 10:12 AM

Welcome to FitDay.

With your positive attitude, I know you can lose that weight. You've got some challenges, to be sure but it sounds like you're a survivor and a postive mental attitude goes a long way. Just remember to never, ever give up!

I think you'll find that logging calories and exercise in FitDay will be a big help to you. It's really the only way I've been able to lose a significant amount of weight.

Take a while to read through some of the subforums--there is a ton (no pun intended :D) of advice and support here. And don't hesitate to ask if you have any questions or need advice.

Regards,
Michael

almeeker 01-20-2011 10:49 AM

Welcome to forum!!! I too applaud your positivity, it takes a lot of character to keep your head up and be thankful for the little things, especially when life has thrown you a few "big" things. Wow, I'm inspired just reading your story. I know you only want to lose 70 pounds, but you still might check out the 100+ threads, nobody there cares about the exact number, we check in almost daily and are in this for the long haul. There are 2 of them, one in the Women's Only corner and the other is Unisex.

On the exercise front, have you considered swimming or water aerobics? That would be easy on your body and it burns a ton of calories, plus you probably won't break a bone if you fall in the water. The elliptical is great exercise too, but give yourself time to work up to it. I think I started out with it at like 2-3 minutes and then worked up a minute or two at a time until I could go for an hour. The elliptical works so well for me that we have one in our dining room. A stationary bike might also be something to try, set the seat up high and the resistance low at first and work up from there, you might even try the recumbent version which is a totally different workout from the upright. Another good, easy on the body workout is the rowing machine, it's great for core strengthening and none too shabby for the upper body and legs as well. Good luck honey.

KingFeckless 01-20-2011 10:58 AM

I think it is great that you have not given up on yourself and are working so hard. About elipticals, I used to run on these things for some time and even though they are certainly lower impact (especially on the knees) I used to get lower back problems from these things. Might be my back which isn't that good, but that were my experiences. I always thought lowest impact would be a training bike. Ever tried one of these?

(I am also amazed that the text recognition programm works so well and apparently also gets the punctuation right)

jewelrymaker 01-20-2011 05:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mecompco (Post 32682)
Welcome to FitDay.

With your positive attitude, I know you can lose that weight. You've got some challenges, to be sure but it sounds like you're a survivor and a postive mental attitude goes a long way. Just remember to never, ever give up!

I think you'll find that logging calories and exercise in FitDay will be a big help to you. It's really the only way I've been able to lose a significant amount of weight.

Take a while to read through some of the subforums--there is a ton (no pun intended :D) of advice and support here. And don't hesitate to ask if you have any questions or need advice.

Regards,
Michael

Thanks, Michael! Wow, you've done amazing work!

I agree about the logging of calories and such. It makes me think twice before just grabbing something to eat because I"m hungry or stressed out (trying to run a business here, too, and that can be tough!).

I'll browse through the forjums as I get a chance. Thanks again!

jewelrymaker 01-20-2011 05:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by almeeker (Post 32683)
Welcome to forum!!! I too applaud your positivity, it takes a lot of character to keep your head up and be thankful for the little things, especially when life has thrown you a few "big" things. Wow, I'm inspired just reading your story. I know you only want to lose 70 pounds, but you still might check out the 100+ threads, nobody there cares about the exact number, we check in almost daily and are in this for the long haul. There are 2 of them, one in the Women's Only corner and the other is Unisex.

On the exercise front, have you considered swimming or water aerobics? That would be easy on your body and it burns a ton of calories, plus you probably won't break a bone if you fall in the water. The elliptical is great exercise too, but give yourself time to work up to it. I think I started out with it at like 2-3 minutes and then worked up a minute or two at a time until I could go for an hour. The elliptical works so well for me that we have one in our dining room. A stationary bike might also be something to try, set the seat up high and the resistance low at first and work up from there, you might even try the recumbent version which is a totally different workout from the upright. Another good, easy on the body workout is the rowing machine, it's great for core strengthening and none too shabby for the upper body and legs as well. Good luck honey.

thanks for the welcome. I've never used the elliptical, but thought I could try that along with several other things if I joined the gym. I used to love to use the weight machines, but all have to work up to that to do it again. Unfortunately, I don't really like swimming. And, two, I'm a bit self-conscious in a bathing suit. Ha ha. I have a total gym machine at home, which I've been thinking of digging back out and using again.

Congratulations on all the weight you've lost, and keep up the good work! Thanks again.

jewelrymaker 01-20-2011 05:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by KingFeckless (Post 32685)
I think it is great that you have not given up on yourself and are working so hard. About elipticals, I used to run on these things for some time and even though they are certainly lower impact (especially on the knees) I used to get lower back problems from these things. Might be my back which isn't that good, but that were my experiences. I always thought lowest impact would be a training bike. Ever tried one of these?

(I am also amazed that the text recognition programm works so well and apparently also gets the punctuation right)

Well, at least I'm trying not to give up! I have to admit it does get discouraging sometimes, but I have a lot to be grateful for and I don't want to give up.

I'm a bit worried about the back pain, since my lower back and spine is now a real mess. I don't know what they can do when the spinal column degenerates to a certain point, but I guess I'll worry about that when I get to it. I've gone through worse, so I just try not to be concerned about the little things. I do know though that if I do the elliptical and it only causes worst pain that I probably won't be so likely to use it very much. I suppose I can always try it out. Thus far, I've only seen it on TV and seen people use it from a distance. It looked kind of fun, as far as exercise machines go!

This text recognition program is really pretty good. Interestingly, I have to actually say the punctuation marks that I want to use. It takes some getting used to. You also have to train the software to recognize your voice by going through a series of quote training exercises". See how that works? Yikes. But it's really useful. I think I like it, but the big problem with posting in this forum using voice recognition is that if my husband's home, he'll hear what I'm saying… Or writing, that is. And I'd rather not have him listen in. LOL

Thanks again for your welcome!

taubele 01-20-2011 05:26 PM

Your story is amazing and inspiring - well done for living through such a difficult time! If you can do that, you can do anything!

I personally love the elliptical - I need low-impact exercise and I find that I can go on that thing for 30-40 minutes without ankle joint pain that I get from a lot of other machines. I'd definitely suggest giving it a try, start slow and move up from there. I also echo almeeker's advice about the rowing machine- I love it!

I've got about 70 pounds to lose too - with patience and persistence, you'll get there. Good luck and welcome :)

01gt4.6 01-20-2011 05:38 PM

amazing story, I think the fact that you've battled this and are still alive is a great accomplishment!

Everyone has great suggestions, my only concern about swimming is if you have a hard time standing in the pool b/c of the numbness in your feet. If you feel like that could be a factor I would advise shallow water and/ or a life vest. I also think a recumbent or stationary bike would help you out.

Lizzycritter 01-21-2011 01:05 AM

The gym I use has arc trainer machines insted of elliptical machines. They are very similar, except on an elliptical your feet make a circular motion and on the arc it's a linear back and forth more like cross country skiing. I have some joint issues myself, and I have to stick with zero impact exercises. The arc trainer I can do without pain, it's awesome. Just make sure you use one that has sturdy handgrips to help with your balance.

Water aerobics would be a good option, unfortunately there aren't any classes near me. Typically you don't have to be able to swim. Beginner's yoga might be an option for you. I am not flexible in the least, but yoga helps me tremendously with my mobility. I have one titled "AM and PM yoga for weight loss" that ANYBODY can do, and I have seen yoga dvd's targeted for people with back issues. There's also a PBS series titled "Sit and be fit" that is done from a chair.


All times are GMT. The time now is 09:40 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.3.2