June 14, 2012

I Can Haz Groove Back (again)?

Oh lawdy, I've been reborn! After nearly a month of spiraling into sin, I've had almost a month of good, hard training to balance it out and am once more feeling great and on the road to healthy lifestyle salvation.

I've also been doing a lot more conditioning work lately since, as much as I love grappling and as much as it makes me sweat, the standup stuff kicks your ass into shape like nothing else. Saturday morning kickboxing has become a routine for me now. It's a smaller, more informal class than the weekday sessions but just as intense. Once, when Dom was teaching, I partnered up with a tall, lanky youngster that I've decided to call Kicker. The reason for this is that he decided - I'm still not clear on why - that he did not care to wear shin pads like everyone else, and spent the whole class kicking the same spot on my thigh with his bony shins...quite hard. I didn't want to be one of those whiny partners that bitches and moans about being too rough, but after a while it really started to hurt and I started to get irritated. So I began kicking him extra hard in return. He's a nice kid and we get along just fine, but I have some anger management issues and very low patience levels so I'm guessing we both went home with giant black and blue patches covering our legs that day. In retrospect, I probably could've handled it better, but what's the point of doing MMA if you can't get a little violent sometimes?

Last week was one of those lazy mornings and only two other students came. Jazz, presumably not wanting to inflict my epic levels of incompetence on either Archie or Kicker, paired them up together and took on the task of working with me, which was almost as good as getting a private lesson. He pushed me like a boot camp sergeant to work extra hard, focusing purely on developing my technique, which is often nonexistent. After 45 minutes, my punches were getting more technical and less flaily, and felt a bit more solid. I was even starting to get that warm fuzzy feeling one experiences when it seems like you're finally doing something right. Then came a bit of live sparring and it all fell apart. Once he realized what a particular disaster I was, Jazz started from scratch to teach me some basic defense, which was a big help although I still left with my ears hurting from failing to block too many times. On the upside, Xena is coming in once or twice a week now, which is nice considering she's 1) a much more experienced kickboxer than me and 2) actually in my weight class, so I don't stumble halfway across the gym every time she throws a kick.

Jiu Jitsu is continuing to go well. I've developed more of an appreciation for gi training now. The grips still piss me off since I can't do half of them with my right hand, but I try to mix and match gi and no-gi approaches to certain moves, which helps. There are a ton - and I mean a freakin ton - of new people coming in lately. It's funny how quickly you get used to introducing yourself in the most ridiculous positions. Like oops, sorry, didn't mean to grab that! Let me just get my arm around here and through the legs and...hi! I'm Reese! What's your name? Been training long? But it's great to be training with so many hard-working and enthusiastic people of all different levels. See picture above: me in the middle, in the back, in blue, in mount, beating up on brand newbie for a change.

After Fundamentals this week, I was trying to leave but Liz convinced me to stay for the start of the late class and do a "light warmup roll" with her, "just until Carlo's ready." I should've known not to trust either of them. Liz took the opportunity to kick my ass up and down the mat, enjoying herself way too much as she threw on one ridiculous submission after another, with Carlo sitting a few feet away, enjoying the show as he slowly ate an energy bar. Every time Liz started cranking my arm in this or that direction, I would call out asking if he was ready to take over yet. He just smiled and shrugged, and kept fucking eating. I think he's still bitter that I never gave him a proper nickname.

Best night ever: Christian, after seeing a bunch of updates on Facebook about my love for Backstreet Boys and NKOTB, decided to loop the same three Backstreet songs for an entire class, much to the dismay of everyone else. While I was rocking out to "Larger Than Life" over and over...and over...the boys looked like they were ready to have some kind of group meltdown. I have to say, it just doesn't get better than watching a bunch of badass tough guys kickboxing to "I Want It That Way" and "The One." It really doesn't. Frodo was the only one who wasn't tearing his hair out and that's because he was too busy laughing. Doubled over, nearly in tears, he was so entertained by the fact that I like old school boybands so much that he's still joking with me about it a month later.


  1. It's all your fault: I've had boy band songs stuck in my head for the last twelve hours. I haven't heard those songs since college, and I never listened to them anyway, but they're still stuck in my head.

  2. Hahaha they have a tendency to get stuck in your head whether you like them or know them or not! I think "Larger Than Life" is still stuck in Frodo's head because he keeps bringing it up lol. He had another laughing fit about it while we were rolling yesterday...he's really, REALLY amused by the whole thing. This is one of the reasons that he's one of my favorite partners, always good fun :P

    Hope you're doing better! I can definitely understand your frustration at not being able to roll while other people are lazing around, but hopefully you'll be back up and running (and rolling) at full capacity soon :o)

  3. I always try to introduce myself to someone before mounting them. hahaha Good policy in life as well. ^_^

    1. LOL! Definitely. Although I find myself forgetting about introductions until the most random moments and then I'm like "oh...by the way, what's your name?" It's all fun though.