As I am often asked about this I will give the basic details to save myself from having to keep repeating them. In reality, although it was a potentially fatal illness, it proved to be only a ‘hiccup’ in my progress. The most startling aspect of this episode was the miraculous speed of my recovery from what is quite a deep operation.
Lance Armstrong (multiple Tour de France winner) suffered from a very advanced form of the same condition and has a very informative web site covering all aspects of testicular cancer. Click here for the Lance Armstrong Foundation web site.
The British “Checkemlads” site is the most popular testicular cancer site in Europe. Find them here.
The basics were as follows:
May 31st 1997: Won the team bronze medal when finishing in 20th position at the European 100km Road Running Championships in Italy.
June 24th: Presented to local GP with strange sensation in left, slightly larger testicle, no pain, no real symptoms but a gut feeling that all was not well.
June 26th: Saw the general surgeon in Kirkwall who diagnosed suspected tumour and informed me that I would need to see a specialist in Aberdeen as soon as possible.
July 3rd: Under went surgery for removal of left testicle in Aberdeen.
July 5th: Arrived back home.
July 6th: Walked 40m (with great difficulty).
July 7th: Walked 40m.
July 8th: Walked 100m.
July 9th: Walked 800m and cycled 2 miles.
July 10th: 1.5 mile walk.
July 11th: 1.5 mile walk.
July 12th: 3.2 mile walk.
July 13th: 55 minute run/walk.
July 14th: Cycling plus circuit training.
July 15th: 60 minutes run/walk/cycle.
July 16th: 4 miles continuous running (13 days after major surgery – wow!!)
July 17th: 4.4 miles continuous running.
July18th: 5 miles plus circuits.
July 19th: Resumed normal training routine with more gradual increases in volume and intensity.
August: Was selected to represent Great Britain in the World 100km Road Running Championships in Holland in September. I had faxed the selectors copies of my training diaries and had pronounced myself as fit for the Championships.
September 13th: Finished in 45th position (M40 8th) in 7hrs 27mins 56seconds in the World 100km Championships. Very pleased.
September 23rd: Had CAT scans in Aberdeen.
Sep 29th – October 18th: Stayed at Tor-na-dee Hospital in Milltimber, Aberdeen, traveling everyday to Foresterhill Hospital for radiotherapy treatment. Trained every day, 45-60 miles a week easy running.
Follow-up lasts for 10 years, starting with 3 times a year check ups in Kirkwall (X-ray, palpation, blood tests), then twice a year then once.