I would be embarrassed if anyone saw my method of walking up the stairs this evening — it was sort of a straight-legged crawl so I didn’t have to move or bend any muscle in my body. It hurts so good! But bad. Really, really bad.
Connor and I took our first class of boxing/kickboxing last night. I had been looking for a way to relieve some stress, and boxing is something that has sounded like fun to me for a while, I just never took the initiative to actually try it. I think the winter has gotten me a little stir-crazy sitting around the house every night, so we finally looked into some classes and picked a place that is super convenient (right next to Con’s work) and had good reviews. Title Boxing Club — the trainers are actual fighters so you get someone who pushes you hard and knows what they are doing.
I was really nervous at first because the classes are open to all ages, all skill levels; so as a beginner, I thought it would be intimidating. But it wasn’t. In fact, I thought it was less intimidating than if I was in a class with people all the same skill as me. There was a man in possibly his 70’s, there was a little boy maybe 10, there was a girl who weighed 100 pounds and a girl who weighed 200 pounds. It didn’t matter. Everyone was there to try something new, or to develop their skills, to have fun, or to get serious. Everyone did their own thing, but everyone felt the pain from the workout!
I got super dizzy in the first 10 minutes of nonstop movement and after 10 minutes I thought I was going to puke! I tried to push myself to keep up but it just wasn’t happening. I took a few minutes for a break than jumped back in. Once we got to the boxing and kickboxing, I did a lot better than the warm-up exercises. We were pushed right into things, but it makes you catch on quick and learn fast. The trainer pushed hard but was fun and kept you motivated to keep going.
So, yes, after the first 10 minutes of class my body felt like it was going to disintegrate, and after the hour long class I couldn’t move. So you can only imagine how today feels, and how tomorrow may only be worse!
After just one class though, I can tell how much my body needed this. Sitting at a desk all day and then coming home to sit on the couch and watch tv has done nothing good for me. It feels so good now to move and be active. After class last night, I was actually tired enough to go straight to bed. And this morning, I felt awake and ready to go. I was energized all day; still running on the excitement of yesterday’s class. I can’t wait to go back, but I know I need to stretch my body out before it breaks.
Here’s the thing I realized when looking back at the different sports and activities I have participated in: ballet and dance was great. It allowed me to stretch and wake up my body slowly. It taught me composure and grace. It kept me from getting too stressed throughout the day, because it relaxed me. It was like my preventative care for stress and aggression. But sometimes, we forget to do the preventative maintenance our body needs, and then we realize we are a bundle of stress and anger, and we need some kind of release. Ballet and dance didn’t give me that release. I needed to work it out. Which is when that punching bag really seemed effective last night. The same way that throwing elbows in soccer as a defensive player did for me when I was little. Those aggressive actions get out the aggression, and boxing seems like a disciplined way to do that. It is the cure for stress and anger once you find that you already have it.
I’m super excited to be starting this journey for both my mental and physical health, for fun and for learning, for something both healthy and productive.