Posted on February 12th, 2008 by Cam.
Categories: Let's talk.

Those who know me well understand the affiliation that I have with football clubs and working out in gyms. I just don’t give a flying rip for either. And given that today is a down day, having trouble walking and being tired in general, you can imagine my shock when I found myself standing in Claremont Football Club this morning with my sweat towel and training shoes on.

Chemo Gym. Not for the faint hearted. I am sure people were standing in awe as they watched my repetitions, curling my arms to the tune of 1000g (a kilo in the old money). The sad fact is that this is the activity that I worked up to. I spent a good 5 minutes on the exercise bike initially on level 3 to get my blood racing before attempting any intensive weight routine.

The most humbling of exercises I completed today was on the multi-purpose machine (I think they call it something else). There are very few things that say ‘you are unfit’ more than completing 20 repetitions on a piece of gym equipment while the weights are actually disengaged. I was there. I have set a new baseline in my fitness benchmarks.

The people that run this gym are sensational. They are all volunteers who assess how your body is going and provide a program that will keep you fit and build you up to get you though chemo. There were about 20-30 people there all at different levels of fitness, I apparently stretched the outlier factor as soon as I walked in the room. I think I was the only person that was there that went to the post office after the workout to pick up walking apparatus.

The sticks, by the way, are fine. But they did come with a compass and snow shoe attachments. Bonus.


Walking stick

Posted on February 12th, 2008 by Cam.
Categories: Let's talk.

In the scheme of things, today is one of my down days. This new cycle of chemo is pretty tame as far as the drugs are concerned. I have finished my 4-day bombardment of toxins that start the cycle, and now I have the rest of the cycle off. No steroids, no cyclophosphamide, no idarubicin. Good to be off these it would seem, but my body has started to get tired very quickly now. My legs ache, my muscles ache and my movement is pretty restricted.

I am looking forward to getting some walking sticks today. We went to the Independent Living centre at the hospital the other week to get measured up for a stick but they were all too small. The ones that were big enough were very serious sticks for very serious walking difficulties. My difficulties are not that bad. I just need a bit of extra support when walking on some days and to help me rest if I need to stand.

So I ventured onto Ebay. Picked up – not one, but three (as you do)- walking sticks for $20 in an assortment of colours. Adjustable, telescopically collapsible, lightweight, interchangeable feet, shock-absorbing, foldable handpiece… don’t even get me started on the incorporated LED flashlight. Oh yeah baby. I am going to be one accessorised limper.

It is important to know that I did hold myself back. I could have gone the option where you get 6 walking sticks for $29. Now that would be just silly. As it is, I know that working out how to use 3 in a day will be a challenge. I also did not go the options of the magnetic compass, MP3 player or snow-feet.

So my face is pressed up against the window, waiting for the postman to bring me my package. It is not the age that I was expecting to get so excited by a new set of walking sticks, but I am going to make the most of it before building up to the pimped up electric walking frame in my twilight years. You know there will be no holding back then.


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