Tuesday, September 1, 2015

I'm Training MMA Again

Let me just start by making one thing clear: I am not tough. Although I have learned how to deal with a moderate amount of pain through training, I do not like pain. If I see a bee buzzing around, I freak out, because getting stung sounds awful to me. Pain is terrible, and I would way rather be comfortable. But for me, MMA has never really been about the pain, it has been more about hte competition. As we become adults, we really don't have many outlets for competition. Most sports are beer leagues, which may be fun, but it doesn't really fill that competitive void.

I have had the itch for a while. Some of that itch is an admitted Napoleon Complex. Other times I think it is just the pursuit of competition. Maybe I'm just the world's biggest sissy masochist where I want to feel pain but not too much pain, because pain hurts. And it may just be that I want to be good at something. Since my job search has been a frustrating mess, just being able to go out and be good and get even better at something definitely has appeal.

Last time, I had the time and lack of responsibilities to go to a world class gym. This new place is different. As far as I know, they haven't produced any UFC fighters. Still, they have legitimate trainers who are good enough to help me keep improving for the foreseeable future.

On my first day, I got partnered with another guy who had not done it for a while but had experience training. I realized I had definitely retained some knowledge as I ragdolled him like I was a boss. I was feeling really good about myself.

I should have left after the grappling side of things.

Instead, I stuck around for Muay Thai. I strike like an 8-year-old girl So after flailing around for an hour, at the end of practice we went three rounds and took turns kicking each other's thighs. In the final round, I got partnered with a girl, and I had to bite down on my mouthpiece as hard as I could just to avoid tears from streaming down my face. I am not a tough guy.

But it's okay to not be a tough guy. Fighting is for tough guys. Training in MMA is not for tough guys, and I'm living proof of that. I don't know exactly what void MMA fills for me, but the physical pain usually ends in mental bliss (after practices, I have so much adrenaline that I feel nothing; unfortunately, the adrenaline wears off after a while, and I feel like death about 15 minutes later), so we'll see how long a wuss like me can stick with it.

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