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Getting Through the Tough Times

When I first got on MFP in 2011, my biggest problem was food; too damn much food. That and overcoming heart disease. I took all the suggestions I could find - well, except for cheat days. I never did those. I got smaller plates, a food scale, got rid of the junk food and read a lot of food labels.

Good or bad or otherwise, I logged everything. Well, except for sex. I put that in as golf.

I lost 66 pounds in a year. I ran a little, and then a lot. I have run 7 marathons. Life happened, I lost a job, I got cancer 5 damn times, my wife and I split up. I managed to keep running and keep my eating in check.

Then October came. I was running a race, feeling good, down to my lowest weight in decades and I got sick during a half marathon. I pooped in the woods. It was embarrassing, but it made for a good running blog.  :)

Since my race, I have been having all sorts of nausea, cramps, and GI distress.

I have been to the doc and had blood tests, given samples of everything but my nose hair and had a CT scan. I honestly can't even count how many times I have been. Suffice it to say, I don't bother wearing underwear so I don't have to take it off all the time.

As far as I know, I don't have any other cancer. Good news!

They did find some spots on my liver and one on my left kidney. I am being referred to a renal specialist for that follow up. There is one thing which bothers me about the spots. That is that, on occasion, they are precancerous. My history with such precancerous indicators is dismal.

The latest on everything else is this: Skin cancer has been at bay since July when I had surgery. My PSA which was 7.6 in July, after going to the healing prayer rooms twice, went down to 4.5 in October and it is now down to 4.0. It is stable but still above normal (2.0). I have a biopsy scheduled for late February and another one in July.

So what about the food?

As my body is changing without my permission, I am struggling with the food again. I gained some weight and didn't really feel like running. I logged my worst mileage for a month in last 4 years.

I have been working hard managing the food again and now I have lost some of the aforementioned blubber.

I know lots of folks on here are emotional eaters. I can be one too. Running has helped me feel so much better both physically and mentally. Antidepressants are one of meds I got off of on my fitness journey. So what am I doing to combat the tough times?

- Coffee, it's a simple pleasure. I got off it for weeks a few years ago and it didn't fix anything they said it would.
- Packing my own lunches and snacks helps me eat quality food.
- Portion control and a food scale are essential.
- I schedule my runs and spinning time in a calendar.
- I layout my workout clothes in advance. Some days it is SO hard to walk past the easy chair and get dressed to run. If I sit down, I lose the battle.
- Scheduling all my doctor's appointments on one day makes it emotionally easier.
- I schedule fun activities in advance. I don't need to sit around my house for too long with nothing to do or I end up eating. Again, the calendar drives me. Otherwise I plop at the dining room table and eat.
- I am living life and some day is no longer in my vocabulary. I am not going to die wishing I had done something.
- Prayer helps me cope with things I can't change.

75 votes + -


VryIrishGirl76 wrote 78 months ago:
Big hugs to you.
Anonymous wrote 78 months ago:
Warm wishes for happier/easier days ahead.
Erin2_U wrote 78 months ago:
I just started up run/walking. I am not aiming to do a marathon, just 5km without walking and then working on speed. Perhaps 10km one day. ;)

I am a total emotional eater. Long story....

You are clearly a strong person. I hope your health in improves. Keep that sense of humour and breathe <3
gailmelanie wrote 78 months ago:
Wow! Life is tough for you, but you still have life. The one thing you didn't put on your list of out to get through tough times is to count your blessings. It helps to look back and see how far you've come on your own power and see the silver linings wherever you can. For example: My ex-husband left me years ago when our son was not quite three. That hurt a lot, but I got stronger because I needed to and that made me attractive to my current husband whom I wouldn't have been able to marry if my ex hadn't left. So, I'm very glad now that he did because my life and marriage are much better than they ever would have been if we had remained together. It sounds like you've come a very long way from where you started and overcome some very challenging obstacles and you keep on keepin' on. Admirable. Really.
As a health care provider and being close to someone who has coronary artery disease, the nausea and vomiting could be related to that. You don't mention if that was checked. You would need a treadmill test to find out if there is any compromised circulation to your heart. Unfortunately, one cannot prevent heart disease sometimes, even if you're doing everything you're supposed to be doing. It's part of your genetic make-up. Take care and be kind to yourself.
FIT2125 wrote 78 months ago:
Respect and Admiration are the two things the come to my mind when I read your blog.

"I am living life and some day is no longer in my vocabulary. I am not going to die wishing I had done something "

This is soooo true not only for you but for everyone us....

Thanks for giving tips to dealing with mindless eating ..That is one of the battles I have yet to conquer

Love , Prayers and Hugs !!
dsjohndrow wrote 78 months ago:
i saw the cardiologist in December and had an echo. Everything was fine.
celticlass69 wrote 78 months ago:
I think you show us how this healthier lifestyle is an unending journey! Life does not stand still and neither do we! What works for one doesn't necessarily work for another. Combine this with the serious health issues that you have endured ... well, it shows me just how healthy and helpful it is to reach out .. even if we are just talking to ourselves and getting it off of our chests.

I know it's been said by others, but I am keeping you in my heart and prayers. Sending you all the positivity and healing I can. I am both proud and priveledged to call you friend! :)
ColinRWright wrote 78 months ago:
I've only fought the Big C once, and it was faith that got me through that very dark time.

You, however, are helping me every day. Helping me stay on track, stay moving/running, and be encouraged by your writing.

I could say more, but what I'll say is simply... Thanks.
Quaters wrote 78 months ago:
You are very motivational what you say about the eating is what most of us do, Yes getting out and about doing our exercise makes us all feel so much better, I am also an emotional eater, i need to chuff the water more i feel so much better with plenty of water, but it is hard , good friends help us , I do exactly what you do with the coffee, on off on off, then i think what the heck life is for living. i love the smell the taste , the pick up it gives me, i have cut back though to about 2 a day, otherwise i am awake all night, keep up the great blogs, be kind to yourself smell the roses, Don't beat yourself up to much.
Hoppymom wrote 78 months ago:
Awww Dave, that sucks. I'm hoping you will get good results. I'm glad to hear that you've lost some of the weight.Consider yourself hugged, a lot. Hang in there.
dcondra2507 wrote 78 months ago:
You inspire me - and make me laugh too. Your comments are helping me to realize that good health, being healthy is not a destination (a To Do item to be checked off), but an ongoing journey with some days falling between the spectrum of "everything sucks" to "it's great to be alive" kind of day. Take one day/hour/minute at a time. *hugs*
Jonesie1984 wrote 78 months ago:
You're awesome. I love your fighting spirit and ability to laugh through the pain. Thank you for your transparency *hugs*
jennbeall wrote 78 months ago:
You are an inspiration to many as you have overcome so many challenges. You bring a humorous positive light to a very difficult challenge with your cancer. My thoughts and prayers are with you! Keep it up...stay strong! It is worth it in the end. :)
skinnyme47 wrote 78 months ago:
You have gone through so much and have overcome. Your prayers and the prayers of others will help with the rest. You are an inspiration to so many on this site.
CBMusic4Lyfe wrote 78 months ago:
You are a champion in my book. Keep fighting in the struggle. I am in prayer with you. your story has totally motivated me to keep doing what I am doing to change my life. Your pointers were very helpful and was right on track with the things that I do. Thanks for sharing.
2012newbie wrote 78 months ago:
I too restarted this process in Jan 2012, and all I can say after reading your post is that I've added you to my prayer list, and we could all learn much from your example. God bless you, sending hugs <3
joymomrn4 wrote 78 months ago:
Your positivity and courage are so inspirational! I especially like your list for getting through the rough times. You are in touch with yourself enough to detect triggers and come up with a plan. If more of my patients had coping skills like yours, they wouldn't need a nurse! Denial and avoidance are two big issues that you have overcome. Blessings on your journey!
jackflak wrote 77 months ago:
Positive thoughts brother!
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