Workout Recap - Week of December 11, 2022
Another weekend that seemed to pass faster than it ought to, but at least this time I do have a minor explanation for it, as I did an extra training session on Saturday. Granted, that was only about an hour, so it doesn't actually explain the whole weekend, but at least it was something tangible.
Muay Thai class
This class focused on round kicks, especially with the lead leg. I'm feeling better and better about how I'm able to do those, though there's still more of a gap between how well I do with each leg than I'd like. I've also noticed that I'm usually alright with maintaining balance and continuing off of a single kick but get increasingly wonky with multiple kicks, so there's still something concrete for me to think about improving. Incidentally, this class also felt less tiring in general than usual, which seemed to be confirmed when I was still energetic enough to help someone push an SUV into their garage on my way home. I'm not sure if it's that my body is adapting to the workload or that the class was somewhat less intense than normal, though; just a curious observation.
Muay Thai class
The gym's giving free classes for the whole month of December as a promotional offer, so we had some new people in there this day, and as a result, it was a good time to review our fundamentals. I think the only strikes we did were straight punches and rear round kicks, which is fine by me; while flying knees or spinning side kicks can be fun to work on and are capable of doing big damage, simple strikes win fights. I felt smooth doing both the power version and the speed version of rear straight punch>rear round kick, which was nice since I can still remember being uncoordinated enough to flop on my back during a round kick in my earlier days. Incidentally, this class was also the first time that I got to hold pads for the coach's demonstration of a drill. It was probably just a coincidence (I happened to be the closest person with pads ready), but there's a chance it was a subtle recognition of my improvement.
Muay Thai class
In contrast to the previous class, I felt like a sloppy mess during this one. Granted that I had some extra hurdles to deal with (my mental conditions were acting up enough to impact my equilibrium and coordination in general), but I gassed out hard on the drill station rotation gauntlet we did to start out, and I was out of steam by the time we were wrapping up the class with repeated body round kicks with each leg. Admittedly, I'd been doing extra undocumented strength calisthenics during the day this week, so it might be that I'm pushing my body harder than it can handle comfortably, but I think there's enough recovery time between the two workouts that that's just an excuse.
Muay Thai class
Toronto had its first major snowfall of the year this day, so attendance was very light for this class. We did long sequences, with a minor focus on multiple same-side attacks, and I feel like my stamina held up better than in the previous class, so maybe I was being too hard on myself for an aberrant performance that day. In any case, I still continue to have some issues with maintaining balance when I go for multiple round kicks with the same leg in succession, but I did feel like I was doing a better job of managing range for rear straight punch>lead round kick>rear straight punch than I have in the past, so at least I was able to take something positive from the class.
Muay Thai sparring
I achieved my goal for using footwork mid-offense to change my angles of attack, but I didn't manage to do the counterpunching goal. I think I was overthinking in the moment and trying too much to find the perfect moments rather than seizing the opportunities I had. On top of that, I was misjudging the spacing for my round kicks more than usual, and I fell into a habit of pushing my jabs rather than snapping them (I was being indecisive about whether I was trying to punch or trying to frame/trap/obstruct for something else and kept ending up with the worst of both options). On the plus side, I think I was doing better in general of varying my approaches so that I wasn't getting stuffed quite so freely on entry by the experienced fighters, and the rounds that I did with people new to sparring were much better (I even got to do a little of Gabriel Varga's nice bullying at a few points). There was also someone (who I didn't happen to do any rounds with) who claimed to have experience but kept making novice mistakes like turning away or leaning over much too far, and the kru teased out pretty quickly that their previous "training" was mostly being a punching bag for others to feel better. I'm curious to see if they take that as an invitation to come get some meaningful training.
Muay Thai solo session
My usual Saturday morning matters were deferred this week, so I decided to go to the class scheduled for today, but since I was the only person to show up for it, it ended up just being some time to work on a heavy bag by myself. I tried to focus on footwork, balance, and movement, doing just a few strikes before either stepping or defending an imaginary counter. I had some stumbles, but I had some moments where it clicked together nicely, so like many aspects of martial arts, I think a lot of my issue is needing to sink in more time to build consistency. To keep things from being too stale, I also mixed in a few endurance rounds of doing repeated kicks or knees and trying to juggle the bag; I need to put more focus on thrusting my hips for my straight attacks with those, but on the plus side, I didn't need to pause to put on shin guards after a few dozen round kicks, so I seem to have improved my durability since my last such outing. I finished with new bruises, admittedly, but it should all be fine to get back to training on Monday.