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Renal Cancer, Kidney removed June 6th. How do I ease back into riding?

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Renal Cancer, Kidney removed June 6th. How do I ease back into riding?

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Old 07-10-18, 10:38 AM
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ramius
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Renal Cancer, Kidney removed June 6th. How do I ease back into riding?

I'm a heavy, asthmatic rider with a history of Atrial Fibulation. (A-Fib)

Been riding many years, which I credit for keeping my BP down, and otherwise helping keep me going as I turn 60 years old soon. (Where did the time go???)

My dad died in April, age 83, and a week later I found out I had one kidney pretty much consumed by cancer. They removed the entire kidney June 6th. I've been patiently healing up and wondering when I could ride again.

Today I took a very short (3 miles) slow ride on a local greenway to see if I could do it. The ride went ok, but I got very dizzy at one point and had to dismount and wait until I could ride again. I expect this was either due to not eating breakfast before riding, or possibly picking a bad place to ride- our local greenway follows a waste water pipeline in this section, and the SMELL was so bad today I nearly vomited. Seriously. I think everyone had to go at once...

Anyway, a quick search did not find any threads (at least for me) about this particular problem. I'd appreciate hearing from anyone who has 'been there, and done that' or any solid info on what I can expect as I try to get back into the groove.

Thank you all in advance.

R.
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Old 07-10-18, 01:33 PM
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My first thought is to discuss with your doctor. Primarily what I would want to know is how much is it ok to push yourself and what is the danger if you push too hard and what symptoms should you be on the lookout for when you ride. Given your situation, I think your doctor is going to give you better advice than anyone here.

Other than that, I would say start with as short a ride as you are comfortable with. If you haven't been riding for a long time, that may be really short. Ride every day or as frequently as you can and just gradually work up to longer distances as you feel comfortable. Don't worry that you can't ride as far as you used to or the rate at which you are improving. It will come.

Oh, and I think I'd avoid that sewer pond. If it's that bad.
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Old 07-10-18, 02:19 PM
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ramius
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Originally Posted by Ogsarg View Post
My first thought is to discuss with your doctor. Primarily what I would want to know is how much is it ok to push yourself and what is the danger if you push too hard and what symptoms should you be on the lookout for when you ride. Given your situation, I think your doctor is going to give you better advice than anyone here.

Other than that, I would say start with as short a ride as you are comfortable with. If you haven't been riding for a long time, that may be really short. Ride every day or as frequently as you can and just gradually work up to longer distances as you feel comfortable. Don't worry that you can't ride as far as you used to or the rate at which you are improving. It will come.

Oh, and I think I'd avoid that sewer pond. If it's that bad.
Thanks- The Doc cleared me to go back to work next week, with no restrictions, but didn't know a lot about riding a bike, so he just said pretty much what you did- take it easy. Normally this time of year I'd be riding 15 to 30 miles on a good day, so this ride was pretty dog gone short.

And yes, that particular stretch of greenway is now officially on my "DON'T GO THERE" list.

Thanks for the input!

R.
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Old 07-10-18, 03:23 PM
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Well congratulations on a successful surgery - wow, that must be a life-changing event.

I'd guess the hazard of riding after a kidney removal is mostly risk of bleeding - if you haven't had any complications and the doc didn't object it seems a smooooth ride without too much exertion or too much jostling around should be OK.

After I had my appendix out (not trying to make comparisons with your surgery), I told the nurse that I was signed up to ride a century in a couple days; and I felt so good I might try to do it. She was shocked, the doctor thought it would be OK. But the nurse said if I happened to crash or make an emergency move, I might pop something. So I started riding again pretty soon, but it was a while before I stopped being super careful.
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Old 07-10-18, 05:57 PM
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I had prostate cancer in 2015. The prostate was removed (DaVinci robotic surgery) and I was off the bike for 2 months. The first few rides were short and not entirely comfortable but after a few weeks I was back to near normal. Give it a few more weeks of rest and slow, short rides and you should be ok.
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Old 07-10-18, 06:41 PM
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This summer is a tough time to recover from what you've been through, especially here in the south this year. Seems hotter and muggier than usual.

You might try an indoor trainer. That's what I've been using to recovery from being hit by a car two months ago. I've had three outdoor rides but mostly I'm using the indoor trainer until my shoulder is stronger (it was broken and dislocated). To get some feel for heat adaptation I'll turn off the a/c and just run a small fan. Temp only gets up to 80 at the worst indoors, but it helps a bit. I've felt okay in the heat at 90-100F on some recent rides of 10-15 miles. I just stop when the shoulder starts aching.

Another good thing about a trainer is you can work on different aspects of conditioning. Spin in an easy gear for aerobic conditioning to work on that asthma (me too). Mash in a harder gear to strengthen the legs for climbs or riding into headwinds. Get as methodical or improvisational as you like. I don't have any set schedule but once a week I'll do a mash in a hard gear to strengthen my toothpick legs (I'm not kidding, I have bird legs). Once a week I'll do intervals, shifting between sprints until I'm about to pass out, the pedal easily until I catch my breath, and do it again. And a couple of times a week I'll just do a moderate effort steady workout while watching TV, just to keep the legs moving.

I also feel better immediately after these trainer sessions. Kick starts the body's natural pain-killing chemicals. The few hours afterward are the only times the past two months I'm relatively pain free without using ibuprofen or something stronger. Too bad it doesn't last -- the next morning the achy stuff starts all over again.
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Old 07-11-18, 05:45 PM
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Originally Posted by RonH View Post
I had prostate cancer in 2015. The prostate was removed (DaVinci robotic surgery) and I was off the bike for 2 months. The first few rides were short and not entirely comfortable but after a few weeks I was back to near normal. Give it a few more weeks of rest and slow, short rides and you should be ok.
OUCH! Glad it worked out ok for ya. Thanks for the encouragement!
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