Woke up in NJ this morning - the 1V8+ and a recently selected 4+ of upperclassmen and freshmen are racing at the IRA National Championship in West Windsor this weekend. Therefore, NJ is no surprise since I drove one of the team vans yesterday from Boston. Training yesterday and today, racing on Sunday, June 1.
6:30am wasn't the first time I woke up, though - talk about a few restless nights' sleep. From about 48 hours in (afternoon of day 3, like clock work), I've been having what I would consider fairly severe leg pains, what feels like muscle, bone, and joint pain, enough to make me wince once in a while and more likely to wake me up or keep me from sleeping. However, by this morning's final wake up, the pain and frequency definitely began to diminish significantly. It has not been a pleasant day and a half, to say the least, but I am sure the worst is over, at least for these two weeks. Because Taxol is a different mechanism than the prior chemo (it blocks mitosis by not allowing the microtubules to pull apart and the cells can't divide), how I did before isn't necessarily an indicator or predictor of how I will tolerate these second 8 weeks. Side effects can be cumulative, so starting out at a low level is good.
Muscle aches and fatigue are common symptoms of this new (to me) chemo and typically last 2-3 days. Ibuprofen and Tylenol to the rescue. Sort of. I took as much as possible and overlapped the two for some partial relief. Putting my legs up didn't help. Sitting down didn't help. Walking or exercising seemed to provide some temporary relief and I am getting a good stationary bike workout in this morning. Today does feel like muscle soreness but not as though I can relate it to a particular activity. If I were to go run in the stadium for the first time in a long time, I can be sure my calves and other specific leg muscles would be sore. These aches I have now have just been indeterminate or rather non-specific pain and soreness. I will take it as a positive sign that the Taxol is working, doing its thing. And, now that I am feeling better today, I will say emphatically that I would trade it for the stomach upset of the Adriamycin and Cytoxan. I might not have agreed with future self at 2:00 or 3:30 this morning.
Another common side effect is neuropathy - numbness and tingling in the fingers and toes - also with a typical 48-hour onset. Thankfully, I did not experience any of that.
Work out done. Post done. Time to get back to coaching!