Out Of the Tree of Life I Picked Me a Plum
I'm having to concentrate on totally unglamorous boring back rehab stuff these days, stupid sissy things like planks, side planks, planks, planks, and more side planks. (Planks are actually not sissy at all: a two minute plank totally kicks my butt into the gutter and leaves me weeping and begging for mercy.) The only hypertrophy lifts I'm doing are flat bench press, inverted bodyweight rows, bodyweight dips, and assisted pullups, varying the grips and number of arms used. What these all have in common is: they don't put any load on the spine or compress the discs. But I'm going to the gym four or five days a week, and loving every minute of it. Especially since my old bodybuilder buddy Darwin is now the manager.
I'm also running 3 miles a day, trying to get my pathetic unacclimated sea-levelized lungs in shape for the high altitudes I'll experience during my trek to Mexico. I'll be exploring volcanos and villages upwards of 8,000 feet which is, like, oh shit when you consider that the highest point in Louisiana is probably the fire ant mound in my back yard.
But even though there's not much visible change in my muscles day to day or even week to week now, I am continuing to whup my ass back into shape slowly but surely. And what I think you can see now is a steady visible increase in robust good health and glowing joie de vivre. I look in the mirror now and I just see Life gushing out of every pore. Behold:
Exhibit A: This picture was taken exactly one year ago, about a week after my first chemotherapy treatment. I was sick as hell.
Exhibit B: Another photo from that same week. My hair had just started to fall out, and I was down to a scary 92 pounds.
And Exhibit C: This is me five minutes ago, a healthy robust 112 pounds, just home from the gym, still high on endorphins after an exhilarating workout and run.
Isn't that amazing? It's good to remind myself (and other cancer patients who may stumble on this blog) of this miraculous transformation from time to time. And you know what I think? I think it's going to keep getting better. I'm really starting to believe that in spite of everything, maybe the best is yet to come.