Thursday, December 11, 2008

First Cut

I've developed a habit of taking naps during the afternoon. I was sleeping so much that I was late to the gym on Wednesday. When I walked in, I was pleasantly surprised to see MoMo. He came in because Hamlin Park's gym was closed that evening. Bill, the coach there, had gone to Brooks Park, where there was a boxing show taking place. I remain amazed at all the weight he's lost. He sparred with Matthew, and he looked good in the ring.

I ended up sparring again with Matthew, too. I managed to keep the mouthpiece in without choking on it, which was a plus. Matthew and I were going light, but I was popped a little hard in the mouth. I felt something wet on my lower lip. Allen stopped us for a minute because the headgear I had on was slipping. I keep forgetting to bring my own headgear in. He fixed the headgear and gave me some water. "You have some blood on you," he announced.

During the nearly seven years I've been going to Loyola Park's boxing gym, that was the first time anyone had hit me and drawn blood. It wasn't much blood, and it stopped quickly. Matthew apologized, but I waved him off. "It's okay. Things happen," I told him.

Old Jim gave me a DVD of counter punching drills. He's really interested in learning defensive moves. I need to acquire those skills, too. Many of Matthew's punches were landing on me because my hands weren't up, and I wasn't moving enough. I was popped in the eye at one point, as well.

MoMo gave me a ride, and we stopped by his house for a moment. He went inside and came back out with a lamb dish that his mother had made. I told him I hadn't had Pakistani food before, so he hooked me up with some. "It's spicy," he said, when he got back into the car. "I like spicy food," I told him. It looks good. I'll have to make some rice to go along with it.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Birthday Sparring

Yesterday was my birthday, and I didn't plan anything, other than going to work and going to the gym. Mary asked me about volunteering for a Park District event for kids that will take place downtown. I'll have to check my schedule, but I think I can fit it in.

I sparred with Matthew last night, and we went light. Once again, I wasn't wearing a mouthpiece. There's no getting around it -- I will have to learn how to wear it again without choking. My plan is to wear it for so many minutes a day so I can get used to it again.

Found out that Old Jim is not interested in competing, but wants to get "a couple of fights". I don't know about that. It's hard for boxers over 35 to get licenses, whether for amateur or professional bouts. I've always believed that the USA Amateur Boxing Association added the Masters' Division partially to quash any age-discrimination lawsuits from older people who want to box. But, unfortunately, health problems that seem to appear with the onset of middle age will knock some boxers out of getting or keeping a Masters' license anyway. That's what happened to me, and Old Jim hinted at some medical issues he has.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Sparring Again

Poor Allen wasn't feeling well tonight; it was a case of the flu, but he came into the gym anyway. No sign of Old Jim, but Paul came in, along with John and Mark. Matthew showed up later, and I learned that he's Allen's son.

John and I sparred. We were supposed to go light. I didn't wear my mouthpiece. I was choking on it after I put it in, and then I took it out. I never quite got used to wearing one, to be honest. Perhaps I need to cut it down a little so it doesn't upset my gag reflex. John got me in the jaw, and then again in the face. I was able to get in a right hook to the body on him a couple of times. We only did two rounds, which was enough for me. I was wore out.

After I got back home, I thought I felt a cut on the right side of my face. There wasn't one, but the area was a little tender. It'll probably hurt a little more in a couple of days, due to my delayed reaction to pain.