T Nation

Regaining 45lb Lost During Sickness


Hi All,

I am trying to get back into shape after spending the last year trading punches with colon cancer.

I lost 12kg (97-85) over two months when the sickness got hold of me, and another 10kg (85-75) while recovering in hospital after my resection. I had my operation last November.

I was never ripped as strength not aesthetics was my focus, but I did carry a decent amount of muscle; IE was deadlifting 500lb without too much trouble.

I regained 5kg during chemo by lifting and eating as much as possible, though this was really limited by nausea and hospitalisations etc.

Finished chemo two months ago and I've now got my appetite sorted; I'm eating in a fairly big surplus, back up to nearly 83kg so far. Lifting upper / lower split 4 x weekly.

My body seems to be craving weight gain and I've dialled my calories back to 3600 from 4000 as I was piling on weight at 1kg or more per week. I'm not worried about being lean and beautiful but I don't want to just get fat.

I am probably around 14-15% bodyfat and hoping to get back to 90kg + without looking disgusting. Pretty much desperate to get back some size but unsure how fast I should allow myself to gain.

Anyway what I am told is you shouldn't allow yourself to gain more than 1lb per week or you will be gaining far more fat than muscle. Does anybody know whether this applies in the scenario of regaining "old mass"?

Has anyone gained weight back after a long layoff and seen faster than normal gains without just getting fat?

Hope this isn't too off topic - I figured in here there would be people who've come back from long layoffs.


yes bro its called muscle memory


So muscle memory applies to regaining mass too? I thought it was just a strength thing, CNS related. I’m pretty much seeking validation to eat as much as possible, hoping it will help me get back lost muscle without ending up obese haha.


Congrats being the winner of the battle.

Don’t worry about minor shit. Just get on a program for your current goal(s) and fitness level. Make small adjustments when necessary and enjoy the ride.

The questions you are asking are inconsequential in the grand scheme of things. make yourself better today then you were yesterday. The rest will fall in place.


Cheers bro. And you’re right about this stuff being inconsequential in the big scheme of things. I’m a very goal driven person, and I guess since I can’t train for strength goals anymore (hernia issues, due to be repaired next year) it leaves me obsessing about regaining size as optimally as possible.


Wanted to bump this and see how it’s going, as I’m just starting back after losing ~55 lbs after a near total colectomy…


Good job on beating cancer

you’ll get it back in time no worries


[quote]panzerfaust wrote:
I’m pretty much seeking validation to eat as much as possible[/quote]

I don’t think you’ll find anyone on here that endorses that. Your caloric expenditure won’t be very high for awhile, so there’s no reason to go ape shit. Just be reasonable.