Tag Archives: kickboxing

Exercising My Options

First, my triumphant announcement:  Book 14 is finally live, hooray! (Click here for retailer links) Now, as long as there are no SNAFUs with the retailers, I can breathe a sigh of relief.  *crosses fingers*  Maybe I’ll even kick back and relax for a day or two.

Or maybe I should go and work out instead…

I have a love/hate relationship with exercise.  I’ve always been a bit of a jock, but I also have a bad case of inertia:  Bodies at rest want to remain at rest, and mine is no exception.

So I’m working away, planted comfortably in my chair, when I realize it’s mid-afternoon and my butt is putting down permanent roots into the chair cushions.  That’s when my better self murmurs, “You should get up and exercise.”

My lazy self whines, “But I’m busy and I don’t wanna! I’ll have to change my clothes, and exercising takes so much time, and it’s hard…”

This argument goes on for a while, but my better self (usually) prevails and pries me out of the chair.  It helps that I’m eager to get in shape for martial arts again — even though I’m too old and slow to compete, I still love to kick and punch the hell out of something that won’t hit back.

So I get changed and get started. Then there’s another whole round of whining until the endorphins kick in and I really get into my workout.  By the end, I’m frizzy-haired, red-faced, sweat-soaked, and grinning with the knowledge that I’m closer to my goal.  That afterglow carries me for the rest of the day, but the following morning is a different story.

I creak out of bed groaning and swearing and questioning my own sanity.  I mean, seriously, what’s the point? I’m going to die sooner or later anyway, and all the exercise in the world won’t change that. Why am I putting myself through this? I could just schlep around being comfortably weak, and I’d only be sore on the rare occasions when I overdo it.  I wouldn’t be sore every damn day. *whine, whine, grumble*

I was in my ‘cranky’ phase a few weeks ago when I arrived at my painting group. After struggling with my watercolour for a while, I let out a martyred sigh and announced, “I’m tired of trying so hard all the time! Why can’t there be just one thing in life that’s easy?”

One of my painting buddies spoke up immediately. “Gaining weight is easy.”

I stared at her, happily enlightened. “Dang, you’re right! And it’s fun, too!”

“Except for the long-term consequences.”

“Uh, well… yeah…”

*sigh*

So I’m sticking to my exercise program.  It’s slowly getting easier.

And hey, that painting turned out okay, too. After nearly two years of weekly attempts, I’ve finally created something I might just hang on the wall!  But I can’t decide on a mat colour.  Opinions, please?  (Click the thumbnails to enlarge.)

 

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Boot To The Head

I have an embarrassing confession to make.  But first, a bit of background information:

You may recall I mentioned getting hit during a sparring session a couple of weeks ago.  Thanks to everyone for the good wishes; my eye is back to normal now except for a bit of blurriness and a few festive sparkles remaining in my peripheral vision.  The doc has assured me it will clear and that my retina is now no more likely to detach than before I got hit, so I’m cleared for takeoff again.

However.

A few days ago, Hubby sent me this:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9g1Z3V0QBpg&feature=youtu.be

The soundtrack (excluding Unchained Melody) is from a Canadian comedy troupe called The Frantics*, from their 1987 album titled “Boot To The Head”.  The performers are martial artists, and the skit was put on at a martial arts convention in 2008.

Needless to say, I laughed my ass off.

Those guys were just clowning around, but the truth is I can’t approach that level of skill even when I’m trying my best.

Apparently I have some rare learning disability that prevents me from putting on my hand wraps correctly even after being shown repeatedly.  My striking and blocking technique could be matched by an inebriated orangutan, but the orangutan would be more graceful.  Every minute or two, I have to stop and gasp for breath until my heart rate slows to panicked-gerbil range.

The sad truth is that I punched myself in the eye.

I had my guard up, with my face tucked down safely behind my upraised fists.  I was supposed to be sparring with my trainer, which actually meant that he danced around me taunting, “Hit me, go on, hit your trainer!” while he dodged my wild swings, laughing and sticking out his tongue and doing everything but wiggling his ears.

(I’d like to note that he’s a big guy with a much longer reach than me.  And he’s an experienced fighter.   And about 20 years younger.  This disclaimer is just a feeble attempt to retain a few shreds of my tattered dignity. Now back to our regular programming…)

He was tapping my guard approximately as fast as a boxer hitting a speed bag:  whap-whap-whap-whap-whap.  While he laughed.  And dodged.  And made faces.

I started to laugh, too.  And I didn’t hold my guard strongly enough.  And he hit my left hand.  And my glove flew back and I punched myself in the eye.

I hardly felt it.  I’m so focused when I’m sparring that I don’t feel much pain until afterward anyway, but this didn’t even leave a mark.  If it had been anywhere else on my body, I wouldn’t have noticed it at all – that’s how lightly he was hitting.

But apparently the angle was perfect, and the next morning I was off to the eye doctor with floaters and bright flashes and blurry vision.

Just goes to show that I’m unlikely to achieve my life’s ambition, which is to NOT die of my own stupidity.

But “injured in a sparring accident” makes me sound like a badass if you don’t know the inconvenient truth.  Maybe that’s why Hubby also sent me this in the same email:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vaVtSES6esQ&feature=youtu.be

At least I prefer to think that’s why he sent it…

Anybody else suffer klutzy sports moments?  Please tell me I’m not the only one.

* * *

I’ve set this up to post automatically since I’m on the road today – another 800-mile marathon across the prairies, woohoo!  (No, I’m not being facetious; I love the drive.)  But I won’t have time to respond to comments today, so I’ll catch up tomorrow instead.  “See” you then…

*The Frantics were best known for their song, “Boot To The Head”, to which they added new and different rants at each live show:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZljpTx_tJ78&feature=youtu.be

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Covering My Ass

I expend a great deal of effort just trying to cover my ass.

I mentioned my disastrous bathing suit debacle in an earlier post, and at the time I noted that I’m very careful about my rear view these days.

Not careful enough, apparently.

The other day I bent over to retrieve something from the bottom of the fridge, and Hubby said, “Oh, nice look.”

With a feeling of impending doom, I said, “Thanks.  Um… what exactly do you mean…?”

Sure enough, the yoga pants that are my daily office uniform had succumbed to the pressure.  It wasn’t noticeable as long as I stood upright, but as soon as I bent over, there was my ass for all the world to see through the dreaded transparent spandex mesh.  (No, the pants weren’t Lululemon – check out notquiteold’s funny Yoga Porn post for more on that.)

I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised.  Ever since I was a kid, the butt-end of my pants was always the first to go.  All the other kids wore through the knees, but my jeans were perfect in every way… except for the patches on the rear.

I once wore out the backside of a new-ish pair of jeans in one day, but that was a special case – I was shingling a roof and I didn’t have knee pads.  When my knees gave out I finished the job shuffling along on my butt, which was a bad idea in many respects.  Quite apart from damage to clothing, if you’ve ever installed asphalt shingles, you know about those nasty little spiky bits that stick into your flesh like needles.  Try extracting those from areas you can’t really see without a mirror and some uncomfortable contortions.

But getting back to the point…

A couple of years ago I tore a muscle kickboxing.  A muscle in an uncomfortable and embarrassing place:   right at the top of my hamstring.

Which is polite way to say “my ass”.

I didn’t go for physiotherapy.  I just couldn’t bring myself to beg my (young male) physiotherapist to rub my butt.  Worse still, to pay my young male physiotherapist to rub my butt.  It just smacked of desperate cougar-dom.

Anyway, the muscle gradually healed on its own, but it still gives me trouble occasionally.  In the past few months it’s been sore.  I’ve been ignoring it because, hell, if I woke up one morning and nothing hurt, I’d check the obituaries to make sure I hadn’t died in the night.

But eventually it occurred to me that perhaps there was an underlying cause.

Sure enough, when I had a close look at the desk chair I’d been sitting in for the past three years, there was absolutely no padding left in the seat.  It was just a bum-shaped fabric-covered bowl with solid (and extremely hard) wood underneath.

Which probably explains the destruction of my yoga pants, mercilessly grinding between the unyielding bones of my ass and the unyielding seat of my chair.

Now I have a new chair and new yoga pants, but I know I’m solving the wrong problem here.

Anybody know where I can get a new butt?

* * *

P.S. Thanks to everybody for your concern over my eye. (For those who didn’t hear, I got hit kickboxing on Sunday and spent most of Monday waiting to find out if I might end up with a detached retina. I wasn’t even fighting; it was just a stupid accident during an easy sparring session.)  Everything seems fine so far – my eye is still a little achy and scratchy, but my vision is back to normal and the doc has cleared me for easy workouts.  But no kickboxing for a while.  *sigh*

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I’m Probably A Sociopath: Exhibit B

A couple of weeks ago, I concluded I was probably a sociopath.  Just in case more evidence was needed, this photo from my living room provides the confirmation:

Cabbage-rose patterned chair

Photographic evidence: Exhibit B

According to Wikipedia, a diagnosis of sociopathy can be made if the subject exhibits at least three of six hallmarks.  Let’s look at them individually, shall we?

Items 1 and 2:

  1. Callous unconcern for the feelings of others.
  2. Gross and persistent attitude of irresponsibility and disregard for social norms, rules, and obligations.

The fact that I harbour this furniture in my living room definitely qualifies me for both items (and probably also for an emergency decorating intervention).  Anyone who cares about the feelings of others or the norms of society would never force another human being to witness that fabric pattern.  But I kinda like it.  It’s… bold.  Yeah, that’s the word I was looking for.  Bold.

Item 3:  Incapacity to maintain enduring relationships, though having no difficulty in establishing them.

I thought I’d be able to weasel out of diagnosis when I read this.  I have no problem with relationships.  So there.

But then came…

Item 4:  Very low tolerance to frustration and a low threshold for discharge of aggression, including violence.

Um… well, yeah, I get frustrated sometimes.  Who doesn’t?  And yeah, I kickbox, but that’s not really violent, is it?  I mean, it’s not like I’m whacking little old ladies in the streets, right?  Just because I go downstairs and kick the hell out of my 270-lb bag when I’m having a bad day doesn’t mean I’m violent.  And really, “low threshold for discharge of aggression” is such a subjective thing.  “Low” compared to what?  Kickboxing is just a healthy outlet for my frustration.

Item 5:  Incapacity to experience guilt or to profit from experience, particularly punishment.

I figured I was home free when I read the first part.  I’ve got lots of guilt.  I tend to ignore it, but I definitely have it, so that’s gotta count for something.  But then there’s the ‘inability to profit from experience/punishment’ part.  Being a fiction writer is pretty much indistinguishable from punishment sometimes.  And apparently I haven’t learned much from it, ‘cause I keep on writing.

Item 6:  Markedly prone to blame others or to offer plausible rationalizations for the behavior that has brought the person into conflict with society.

Oh shit, rationalizations.  But that thing about the kickboxing wasn’t really a rationalization, was it?  That previous sentence wasn’t a rationalization, either.  I’m pretty sure about that.  And anyway, my mother picked out the furniture.  So it’s not really my fault…

Oops, rationalization and blame.

The wiki also helpfully notes, “There may be persistent irritability as an associated feature.”

“Irritability”?  Come on, seriously?  Do you know anybody who doesn’t get irritated sometimes?  That really pisses me off!

I mean… um… never mind.

So I’m five out of six, with bonus points for irritability.  That might worry me if I didn’t have a gross and persistent disregard for social norms.

And I just can’t seem to feel guilty about that…

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