I am a super-fit lifelong runner and cyclist.
After my RaRP in May 2019 (then aged 63), I made myself walk at least a little every day, starting from the day after the operation and within the limits of discomfort (which was mainly from the catheter). I think the most I did was about half a mile, twice a day, just round the block. By the time the catheter came out 10 days later, I was desperate for some decent heart-rate-elevating exercise. To get my exercise "fix", from the day the catheter came out onwards, I went out on my bike and cycled without sitting on the saddle.The first day, I just cycled about a mile but I remember feeling such exhilaration, after basically lying on a bed for nearly two weeks.
If your friend is a keen and experienced cyclist, cyling while standing on the pedals should be no problem for him. Non-cyclists may not appreciate this, but it is easier to cycle up and down a steep hill without sitting down, than it is to cycle along a flat road without sitting down. I live near Shooters Hill in London and after building up for a few days, I basically just cycled up and down a few times.
Due to the abdominal wounds, running was out of the question until four weeks after the operation, but I started gently with about a mile and just built up from there. From that point, I still cycled a few miles a day and started sitting towards the back of the saddle (on the "sit bones").
Luckily I was completely continent from day 1. I think this was a combination of luck, a good surgeon and having good core muscles to start with. My surgeon told me that he finds that runners generally do better with continence than non-runners. In the run up to the operation, I practised starting and stopping weeing loads of times as well as the recommended pelvic floor exercises (I seem to remember an Australian bloke has a good video on Youtube which I can look out if you are interested).
In terms of ED, I was nerve-spared on one side and was only potent with viagra for the first year or so. Things have gradually improved and I now get the occasional non-viagra erection at night.
I am not advising anyone else to do what I did but my surgeon (who is a runner himself) was quite happy about it when I saw him six weeks or so post-op. Your friend will have to make his own mind up but, personally, I was more prepared to risk nerve damage (whilst being careful saddle-wise) and potentially worse ED than to gain weight and lose cardiovascular health.
PS Forgot to say that my post-operative mental health was much improved by my daily bike rides.
Edited by member 16 Apr 2021 at 18:16
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