Cutting to the chase, I am doing well. By mid-January, not only did I really and truly have a full head of hair, I finally actually felt good. Finally and for a change, if I felt tired or worn out, it was more likely due to not getting enough sleep (staying up too late and/or getting up very early) or doing a full-throttle work out. What really clued me in, though, was an impromptu session of "Hit the racket ball and run," an energy and frustration burning game of distraction my assistant coach and I have taken up on occasion. I could run and sprint and swing for the ball and not feel like I was in cement without enough oxygen. It was a very happy moment!
Workouts are going well. Physically, the power came back fairly quickly. It was also the last aspect of training to diminish even if I can only measure it anecdotally. At this point, I feel like my endurance is still improving, and I'm up to that uncomfortable and unfortunate point where any extra gains really start to take a lot more effort and time. NOT that I am complaining.
As for the hair, on my head it is still short, but I've been keeping it that way. Even though it has all come in, it still doesn't quite feel like my hair. I think there's a bit of a wave to it though it's not long enough (less than an inch on top if the clipper measurements are to be trusted) to notice. I've just been enjoying the easy care that comes with super short hair. Pro-tip - no comb necessary, just smooth it down with your palm. By now, all the rest of the follicles all seem to be back on their own rhythm with hair naturally falling out when it is supposed to and being replaced on the same schedule rather than 100% on or off. When my hair started coming in in full force, I felt a bit Yeti-like. It seemed like every hair follicle kicked into action at the same time and I went from being hairless to nearly fuzzy. Thank goodness that phase has gone by.
Day to day, I am taking my tamoxifen without fail. I'm not a fan of the hot flashes, at least not the few that cause me to break out into a full body sweat, but again, I am NOT complaining, at least not too much. This sure beats the chemo!
Burying the lead, the real news is that I have signed up to ride in the Pan-Massachusetts Challenge, which from their website is an annual bike-a-thon founded in 1980 that crosses the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and channels 100% of rider-raised dollars to the Jimmy Fund supporting treatment and research at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. Although I received treatment at Massachusetts General Hospital and Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, I absolutely benefited from prior and ongoing cancer research. You can follow me and support my ride here on my paceline page as I support the PMC's mission to find a cure. I'll be sure to keep you up to date.
So far, February has been pretty good. The Patriots won the Super Bowl and Hanover has less than two feet of snow while Boston is close to 6 feet ❄ ❄ ❄ ❄ ❄ ❄ ❄ ❄.