My toes quit hurting by the weekend before last, and I finally started feeling better that Sunday evening. The best I can describe those 5 days I felt so bad is that I was so exhausted that I felt ill from it.
I didn’t ride again until last Saturday, when I did 25 miles. I felt some of the same “so exhausted I felt ill” feeling afterward. I rode 25 miles Monday, and didn’t feel bad afterward. I wanted to ride another afternoon or two this week, but the wind has just been more than I’ve been willing to battle.
My third round starts tomorrow. I’ve already decided not to ride for a week afterwards, to see if that helps keep the exhaustion away.
I’ve also done more research on adjuvant chemotherapy, trying to find out more about why some doctors use three rounds, and some four. It looks to me like, after three rounds, the toxicity of the drugs start to outweigh the benefit, so I’ve already decided to bail after three rounds. That means one 6 hour IV tomorrow, and one 2 hour IV next Friday, and I’m done.
Lung cancer chemo drugs, in the amount they’re given for lung cancer, are the most toxic of all; I’ve earned a whole new respect for those who survive 6 or more rounds. I’m not sure I would.
I don’t seem to be having a very good week. My wife and I managed to do 25 miles on the tandem Tuesday, but by yesterday the aching in my toes (neuropathy from the chemo), which had started Sunday, got so bad I had to get a prescription of gabapentin for it. Today, I feel in a funk. I’m not sure if it’s the chemo or the gabapentin. Plus, my toes still ache, big time. And tomorrow is the gemcidabine chemo that happens on day 8 of the cycle, so things aren’t getting better, soon.
Maybe this would all be easier if I had had some actual symptoms from my disease first, but all I’ve had is the horrible surgery and the horrible chemo, and it is wearing on me. Some oncologists only use three rounds of chemo for adjuvant treatment, and it may be pretty difficult for me to sit still for that fourth. Even getting the third is an awful thought, right now.
Paul and Greg came over today and joined me on a 40 mile ride from home. I rode the Nimbus, and Paul wanted to try out Rose’s Stratus, but it ended up really being too short for him. He had to leave the seat much too upright and his tailbone was killing him by the end of the ride.
So, it was the ride of the gimps: “Tailbone” Paul (from riding too upright for 40 miles), “Mangled Foot” Greg, and “Chemo Kid” Bud. But it was a fun ride, and I really enjoyed being able to get out and do 40 miles, today. Thanks y’all, for not dropping me like a bad habit on the ride. Wait……… maybe that’s because I was the only one who knew where we were going….
The weather didn’t cooperate very well last week (snowed twice ……… in Texas, yet), so I only got 43 miles during the week. Friday was my long six hour cisplatin plus gemcidabine IV, and I was still pretty trashed the next day. Today, though, I got out and rode 40 miles with two friends (see the ride post following this). I wasn’t very strong on the hills, and was generally slow, but it was 40 miles, anyway.
Conferring with my chemo doctor before the treatment, he was amazed that I had ridden 63 miles last Saturday. Of course, non-riders are amazed at anyone doing 63 miles, so I guess it’s all relative. My blood counts were normal; I hadn’t lost any weight, so the doctor was happy. I’m tired after today’s ride, but really don’t feel bad at all. If it doesn’t rain tomorrow, I’ll probably have my wife on the tandem for 25 miles.
This was my no-treatment week, I felt ok, and the weather was mild (except for Tuesday), so it seemed like a good time to get some miles:
Monday = 25.3 miles
Wednesday = 25.2 miles
Thursday = 27.0 miles
Today (Sat) = 62.7 miles
I weigh 3 pounds less than I did on December 19th, the day before my lung surgery, so my weight is holding up alright so far.
The chemo drugs do take their toll, though. After today’s 62 mile FWBA Bicycles Inc club ride, I was as wiped out as I’ve ever been after a 200k. My red blood cell count is bound to be lower after the next round, so I don’t think I’d better do any more rides of this length until the chemo is over, and I have recovered. Round 2 starts next Friday.
FWBA Bicycles Inc route