Quick update: Today is day 36 since starting my treatment and I am doing very well. With my birthday a few days away I am excited as I still have hair on my head even though it has thinned a lot and doesn’t stop falling. My cancer nurse specialist called me back to talk about what happened in my last chemotherapy session. She was extremely kind and supportive and for once I felt listened to. As there is no one available to put in a PICC line (the tube which stays in my arm until I finish all my chemo sessions) before my next chemotherapy session it will mean that I will have my chemo next week as I usually do, but they will take extra precautions.
Okay so that was a quick update and now I wanted to share with you the struggle with my weight which I have had since falling ill.
I have briefly mentioned in previous posts how I gained around 10kg after falling ill. Most people may think that having cancer means you will be left stick thin, when actually that isn’t really the case.
My weight gain has been due to multiple factors, not only did I over indulge when I first got my diagnosis I was also laying around a lot more. Usually my work keeps me on my toes and I have always watched what I eat. Other than being lazy and over eating, the steroids and hormone injections which I was given contributed to my weight gain.
Now you may be thinking I am mad and vain for worrying about my weight when I have a serious illness to worry about. But what you don’t know is my wedding dress is a size 6 tailored down (my wedding dress fitting was scheduled in 2 weeks time – now cancelled). I am no longer fitting into my normal clothes so there is no doubt that I wont be able to get into my wedding dress. I don’t want to keep piling on the pounds and then if I do get better i’m faced with the struggle of having to lose 2/3 dress sizes. Why wait? It just doesn’t make sense.
So for the last few weeks I made some lifestyle changes which have helped me lose 5kg already wuhoooo i deserve a medal – no seriously bear in mind a lot of the time I have little energy. Being ill should not be a reason to neglect yourself, and I am now motivated to be in the best shape more than ever. I want to have control over my body. If I cant control losing my hair and having to deal with chemo i can control how my body looks and I will!
So what have I done to keep fit? Counting my calories and exercising! Yep sorry nothing exciting – no magic pill.
I am no sporty spice but I love exercising and the days which I am able to work out are the days I feel at my best. Unfortunately for a week after each chemo session I am too unwell to exercise so I am in bed a lot of the time and that makes me feel very low. I want to emphasise that my medical team are fully aware of my workout regime and I would always advise anyone with a health problem to discuss weight issues with their doctor (ahem said like a true doctor – im joking!). It is important to me that I don’t do anything to jeopardise my health further.
When I have the energy to get up I workout for 20-30 minutes a day, and on a weekly basis i workout for one hour with my personal trainer Emma Ludlow. I know my limit and I try to ‘listen to my body’ I know when to stop and what days to sit back and rest.
My personal trainer Emma is amazing, I look forward to my weekly sessions with her, as she really pushes me and by the end of the hour session I always feel great! I train from home as I can’t go to the gym, and trust me you don’t need fancy equipment to workout.. just determination! We do everything from cardio, weight training, interval training, boxing you name it! The sessions are always varied so it never gets boring.. if I physically could, I would train more often with her!
A big massive shout out to Emma who has really helped me feel better both physically and mentally. I want to share some information about her – and no I am not paid or sponsored to do this!!
My trainer has her own personal training company called ‘swing out sisters’. She is a highly experienced personal trainer (a member of the national register for personal trainers), who not only provides training but also nutritional advice.
Her fields of expertise include:
» Body Sculpting
» Circuit Training
» Boot Camps
» Kettlebell Training
» Core Conditioning
» Nutrition & Weight Management
» Strength Training / Conditioning
» Weight Loss
» Pre & Post-Natal
This is her website for those interested: http://www.swingoutsisters.com
So thats the exercise side of things, as for my diet.. Well I did try to go vegan.. But that lasted an hour!
I decided what works best for me is a balanced diet but not exceeding my calorie count. I eat everything and anything but I make sure its within my calorie limit.
I use the mobile app ‘nutra check’ to help me with my calorie counting. The great thing about this app is you can scan the barcode of the food packaging or search for the food in the search box. It’s very easy to use and I love it. There is also a forum which you can join – I don’t participate but it’s interesting reading other people’s experiences.
There are days where I exceed my limit, but I am never too hard on myself – we need to give ourselves a break!
So thats how I am trying to keep fit.. As my consultant told me I should expect to get more tired with each chemo session – so far this week i have worked out only one day and for 15min only. I will likely need to stop my training sessions with Emma at some point, but for now I will take each day as it comes.
Some words of wisdom..
Sending you all lots of love, positive energy and motivation xxxx