Tuesday, July 17, 2012

About Last Night

Yes, that is a reference to the movie from the 80's. You can take the girl out of the 80's but you can't take the 80's out of the girl.

I recently decide to pursue my Martial Arts Practice again. The last time I studied was a few years back.

I really adored Sensei. That's saying a lot because I don't like a lot of men. Nothing personal guys, but I'm not one of those women who aren't going to throw myself all over you. You have to show ME why I should like you.

Sensei was a retired marine who spent much of his life living in Japan and learning Shotokan Karate. He picked up teaching here, and he taught very small classes. He taught the classes on the cheap. He did this because that's how he was. Sensei retired. Because he didn't have a "dojo" and there wasn't anyone to pick up his practice, my practice stopped.

Then we moved. For years, I looked for another teacher. I met a couple, but things just didn't feel right. 

The other day I picked up my searched again. To my surprise a new dojo had opened up very close to my house. I did research on the place and the head teacher and decided to go over after an initial call went well.

Last night, I walked into the Dojo not really sure what to expect. I walked in and the first thing that strikes me is a sign that reads:


I had to laugh, pretty sure that they'll take anyone willing to learn. 

The teacher came out, and we went to his office to talk. I had a bunch of questions regarding his philosophy. I explained my history. That's when he told me that they teach Krav Maga. Krav Maga is an Israeli military fighting style that is akin to street fighting and is pretty rough. Where Karate is pretty. Krav Maga can (initially) be pretty ugly but always effective.

Then he said something very interesting:
Let's go see what you have. I have two daughters. I don't care if they know kata. I want to know that when they are walking around campus, they can defend themselves. Kata is important and part of tradition. But most people can't truly defend themselves until they are a black belt. Let's see your reactions.

I didn't expect to mess up my hair. I expected that we'd talk. I find out how much it cost, etc.

First we did a short warm up. 30 seconds of different things: pushups, crunches, that type of thing.

He says: do pushups for 30 seconds. You can go on your knees if you need. 

To which, of course, I raised an eyebrow.

30 seconds? Pushups? He might do more than me, but I'm not going on my knees. I did 24 pushups in 30 seconds. We then did core stuff. The core stuff...piece o'cake.

Then we were ready.

The first challenge. I was going to be blinded and attacked at various intervals. I had up to go hard and beat the attacker in 20 seconds. 

I'm in the middle of the floor. It's total quiet. I'm just standing there in the dark waiting. I felt the bump come at me from the left. I spun around groin kick, punch punch, knee kick.

It was quiet again. This time I waited in the dark for a lot longer when I felt something come at me from the front. ELBOWKNEEPUNCHPUNCHKICK. 

holy cow, who was this guy coming at me? He's built like a frickin machine. 

We did this a total of about 15 times. By the end, I was a sweaty mess. 

He said: Good work. Next week come back, and we'll see how you do with kata.

I am definitely going back. I just need to figure out which plan I'm going on. I can easily go into the black belt program that uses the regular stick work, breaking boards, etc. or I can go into a program that does insane jump kicks (movie style) and learns to use more tradition weapons. I think I might stick with the black belt program for now. Move to that later. 

After the class, I went home and started to think about something. I was doing a weight routine recently the most pushups I would do in one sitting was 12 then I'd take a break and do more. Last night, I knocked out 24, and I would have kept going if he said it would be a minute.

In Master's swim, I swim with people who are faster than me. There's never a time that I think "I can't keep up." I just do.

When I'm on the bike, I have no problem going after guys who are quite a bit ahead of me and making it a goal to catch up. Sometimes I catch them and sometimes I don't but I keep at it the entire time.

The funny part? None of this ever hurts as much as I think it's going to. This is why I have so much confidence on the swim and bike. I know that I haven't reached my potential on those two events. 

But, I don't have this with running. I don't run with a group. I don't see other people out there. Because of that, I give up way too soon. 

I need to figure out how to bring that piece to my running. How can I be attacked from all sides and not be phased? How can I knock out pushups without worrying about whether or not it is going to hurt. How do I keep handling speed at further distances on the swim? How do I keep catching athletes on the bike?

I know why. I just don't know how to overcome it on the run. I know it's there now. I know what my issue is. 

I just need to break through it.