Week three came with more learnings and a "near tears" experience. This has been a busy week moving things back and forth to my new condo and ramping up for a big move this weekend, but I was able to make it to the gym a couple of times and I'm glad I did!
On Tuesday, I got to get in the ring again and go one-on-one with the more advanced boxers. I was on offence as I haven't been cleared to officially fight by the doctor yet, so I am only allowed to punch people (gently) and they can't hit back without warning. It's always nice to get into the ring and see what an actual fight is going to feel like and put everything I've learned to the test. At one point, we got to throw our close punches (uppercuts and hooks) and our opponents were able to hit us back. The first time I got punched in the stomach (thanks, Al) I was stunned for .5 seconds and then realized I was ok!! (YAY!) I stayed for the conditioning class that followed the technical one and couldn't walk properly for the next few days. It was also difficult to wash my hair every morning this week because my shoulders were completely ruined!
Thursday came too soon after that intense workout, but luckily it was less conditioning and more focus on the 'basics of boxing'. Virgil had a group of us stay out of the ring and in front of the mirrors to go over defending in detail. With every move or punch we learn, I memorize everything that my teacher is saying. I also learned that this is NOT the best thing to do in boxing. Boxing is a sport that, once you're in the ring, an instruction manual as to what you're supposed to do in an exact circumstance would be impossible to write. I learned this the hard way when I could not understand why, when we were paired up to implement what we were just taught- no one was defending my punch the "proper" way. I immediately called Virgil over who tried to explain that boxing isn't exactly 'by the book' and when you're in the ring and a punch is coming your way, you aren't going to be thinking about which way you SHOULD turn and how your foot SHOULD be twisting.
This was frustrating to me and made me feel really anxious and worried that I was NEVER going to get it. I felt the tears coming (this is my natural reaction) but I held them back. I'm a fighter now! I don't cry! At least not yet....
This week has made me realize how physically and mentally demanding the sport of boxing is. I can't wait to dive into everything there is to learn about it and challenge myself in ways that I have never been challenged before!
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Thanks for reading!