Archive for January, 2010

Training: behind the scenes

January 25, 2010

Anyone who’s watched Rocky will know that training involves so much more than just sweating away in the gym, grunting under weights and taking it out on a heavy bag. No, I don’t mean befriending an abattoir owner or finding a famous monument to tear up and down. I’m talking about the more private side to training; the parts that go almost unseen by anyone else.

To give you an insight as to what training is like behind the scenes, take a look at the list below of how life looked last week:

  • 15 showers
  • 7 loads in the washing machine
  • 1 tearful sob in the car after training
  • 1 deep analysis of what it means to spar
  • 8 reminders of footwork and how to balance
  • 2 instances of positive visualisation
  • 1 bruised rib
  • 1 bloody lip (not mine!)
  • 1 poke in the eye (mine)
  • 9 protein shakes
  • 3 egg whites
  • 2 trips to the butchers
  • 1.5kg of meat consumed
  • 5.5 max number of minutes (achieved so far) sprinting non-stop on the treadmill
  • 2 glasses of wine (sorry)
  • 2 bunches of bananas
  • 0 chocolate / bread / pasta / rice (hooray!)

Are you training for something too? What did your week look like?

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Seven things to do in Thailand besides fight

January 21, 2010

In between four and a half hours of training each day (excluding the morning jog around a lake and the frequent one-on-one training sessions) I’m hoping there will be enough down-time to squeeze in a few Phuket sights and sounds.

Here are the seven I’m most looking forward to but if you have any recommendations I’d love to hear from you:

1. Hiring a scooter – could there possibly be a better way to see this gorgeous area?

2. Daily massage – at only $8 a session, it would be rude not to

3. Searching for elephants – apparently I won’t have to search too far. Elephants on the roadside? I can’t even being to imagine what that must look like. Best practice my obstacle avoidance scooter skills!

4. Shopping – hmm, maybe not for girlie goodies though. I understand the quality of gloves and hand wraps out there are second to none

5. Sitting in the crowds, cheering on the local fighters – just a small evening sample of what I might be up against at the end of our training. Eeek!

6. Eating – not only do we get a breakfast to die for at our hotel, but I hear the local food is beyond amazing. After all that training I think we’ll need it

7. Sunday (our one day off) – sleep? Sight see? Snorkel? Sunbathe? Surf? How’s a girl to choose?!?

Essential fight films

January 12, 2010

I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a rookie when it comes to knowledge of fight films. It took me thirty years until I saw my first Rocky (and that was only last Friday)! But with our Thailand trip coming up in less than nine weeks, watching fights and fight films feels like it ought to be part of the training.

If I had to start compiling a list of my favourites from the few I’ve seen so far, somewhere among them would be Million Dollar Baby, Ong-Bak and, of course, Rocky.

But do you think they deserve to be there? What films would you recommend I watch? I’d love to hear which fight films belong in your own essentials list.

Thanks so much for commenting; I appreciate you taking the time. I’ll combine all your thoughts in the ultimate fight library to watch before Thailand.

Reality check

January 6, 2010

Well, I guess that’s it. The final payment for flights has been deposited and our itinerary received. It’s official: On March 6th we’ll depart for Phuket for ten (incredibly) intense days of Muay Thai training.

Until then, we’ve only nine remaining weeks in which to sharpen our skills and elevate our cardio to a level suitable for lasting several rounds in a ring (although if it’s up to me I’ll be going for a knock-out in the first!)

Speaking of which, a recent email from my training partner, Emma, gave me a heavy dose of reality. It contained a detailed eight week sparring schedule, starting with light kicks and punches to full-on knees and elbows in later weeks.

I’m not going to lie, sparring still terrifies me. After my first sparring session almost eight months ago I was fighting back tears of shock from being hit and having to hit back rather than just run away (which was my first instinct!) But you can’t run anywhere in a ring so I’d best get used to it.

I’m honestly not sure how I’ll fare, I’m really quite scared. One thing’s for sure, any practice now will be invaluable when we get to Thailand. I’ll just have to make sure there’s plenty of tiger balm on hand to soothe the inevitable bruises…plus a rewarding massage after a hard day’s training, of course.

I’d love to hear your tips on how to reduce the terror of sparring.