So, as regular followers of this blog may be aware, I have gotten back into physical training lately. As part of that, a couple of months ago I visited a boxing gym around the corner from a place where I work. It is called Supreme Team Boxing. They also have MMA, kickboxing, muay thai, and BJJ. I signed up for a “ten-pack” of boxing classes that also allowed me to use the gym for doing my own workouts for a limited time.
For the first few weeks I failed to find the time to work their classes into my schedule. I tried the weight room, but being as this is more of a martial arts school than a fitness center, there was not the variety of benches, chairs, racks, and machines as one would expect. I was able to do some lifts and presses, and was not displeased by my strength level, though I know it is far lower than it has been during my periods of hard training.
The next time I went I decided to hit the mats when they were not being used and do some BJJ warm-ups and other equipment-free exercises. This was the first time I had done this sort of thing since before going to the IMCF world championships in 2014. My ACL injury had kept me from doing much grappling and after my surgery and recovery I had not gone back.
I nearly died. Even the simplest things, like forward and back rolls, were near-impossible. Moves that required push-up strength and grappling endurance beat me like an after-school bully. I pushed through as best as I could, and walked out of there with the realization that I had a way to go before I would be back in the fighting shape I used to be.
My gym membership at Absolute Power in my neighborhood had expired a year and a half ago. I had been going to the SCA fighter practices over the summer at which I would do three laps around the lawn before putting on my armor (down from my usual 5 laps that I had been doing for years). I had even done my combination run/workout at least once a week, either in my neighborhood or that of my GF. I had been noticing gradual improvements in my performance. I was already starting to be able to run further, I was advancing from doing one to two pull-ups at a time, and so forth. I was still well below my “fighting shape” performance metrics, however, so my substandard performance in the gym was not really a surprise.
So I kept on coming back for the next few weeks. I would play superhero movie themes or 1950’s rockabilly to get me energized. Then one day I realized I had time to try the boxing class…