Cancer Recovery (Exercise)

It’s my first day back to rehab and I’ve still got a pretty gnarly scar.

I’m just going to be doing 10 minutes of breathing work basically on my back. My core is incredibly sore and weak.

We’re just going to step back into it with some light breathing work.

Because the incision was through my abdominal wall, I’ve noticed that might core and my abs have become very weak. I just spent a couple of minutes on each side breathing really deeply through my diaphragm.

I’m trying to fill my belly up with as much breath as possible. Then, when I exhale trying to tense and hold the stomach muscles, it shows just how quickly, like that, what you’ve built up can go away.

Some people have asked me what’s the point in exercising so much then if it gets taken away so quickly?

In my opinion, exercise and fitness, health has allowed me to recover quicker. I was walking around faster than they thought and I think it’s going to help me deal with the ongoing surgeries that I’m going to need to have on my kidney.

What’s happened is I have an incision on my left side for the orchidectomy and on my right side, I still have a stent in my kidney and potentially I will need to have surgery to further heal that.

Now, I’m trying to get back into exercise and learning how to exercise with reduced mobility.

It’s day three now of my rehab. I’ve been doing every other day and a few exercises in between.

It’ll be two weeks since I had my orchidectomy. We’re just going to do some banded pull apart and also going to do some bicep curls.

My coach is coming over, which is great. Sophia Tapper. I’m excited to see her and she’s going to kind of give me a bit of an assessment.

I’m still struggling to walk. It’s certainly getting better. It’s certainly getting easier.

It’s become apparent to me, that my fears are not around the fact that I can’t exercise.

It’s the uncertainty of the timing of everything.

I probably will have to have a couple of rounds of chemo, which is not a lot compared to some people. Then after that, I need to have another couple of operations on my kidneys. I feel like it’s a little bit, stop, start, stop, start.

I think we all like routine. We like to know where we are.

It’s going to be difficult for me to set up any kind of even rehab routine because I don’t know fully what I’m going to be doing day in, day out, which is just par for the course.

That’s the way that it’s got to run, which is fine. I’m just going to do what I can when I can.

I’ve also got a balance between that feeling of, I don’t want to work out because everyone feels that all the time and my body saying you really need to not do anything right now.

I’m literally going to spend the next 15 minutes doing some exercises.

Today, I’ve got another little small session. I’m beginning to feel much better. My scar is beginning to heal.

While I’ve heard that the number one complaint people have is that the stitches disappear and dissolve and the glue dissolves, and they think that it’s healed. But actually, the skin heals a lot quicker than the muscle underneath.

I still need to be careful to make sure that the muscle and the fascia and the fat have time to knit together.

The workout regime today is just going to be some banded pulls. It feels nice to be up early-ish and to be doing something active.

But again, I can feel that I’m already tired from it. Liv mentioned an athlete who we both admire, Sara Sigmundsdóttir.

She recently ruptured her ACL and had to have surgery on it, but she’s this incredibly bright, bubbly, smiley bright-eyed athlete. Super, super positive and obviously she was pretty devastated by the news.

There’s actually video footage of her ACL rupturing. You can see it when she does this particular movement, but she has this kind of energy and message about her. It’s about “just keeps moving forward and doing little by little”.

Again, I had a little panic with Liv. I was like, am I doing enough? Now did three different sets of five exercises, 10 reps each with the bands.

It feels very very easy for certain parts of the body and a bit more uncomfortable for others but I’m tired from that now.

That’s the first week of me beginning to recover. The process is very long and difficult.

I’m enjoying it. I like exercising and moving again, but it’s quite humbling having to do the lesser exercises.

Taking it easy, hoping to hear from the oncologists later this week about chemotherapy and further treatment. We can then get my kidney to look tight as well. Long road ahead of us but it’s good to be moving today.

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Mike Killen

Mike is the world's #1 sales coach for marketing funnel builders. He helps funnel builders sell marketing funnels to their customers. He is the author of From Single To Scale; How single-person, small and micro-businesses can scale their business to profit. You can find him on Twitter @mike_killen.