Tuesday, November 03, 2015

Kettlebells and Hits

I was not going to spar last night at Loyola Park.  My right shoulder was giving me problems, the left side of my upper back was acting up, and both of my knees were jelly.  But two new women in the gym, as seen in the above photo, sparred for the first time.  "You're just hitting each other's gloves," Alan said.  "Hit each other in the face!"  The women giggled, but they did not put more force on their punches.  "That's just pitty-pat.  If you all keeping doing that, I'm going to send Hillari in," Alan continued.  "Okay, I'll go in for a couple of rounds," I said.

"Hillari is actually going to hit you," Alan told both of the women.  I went one round with each woman.  I did get hits in, but I did not put great force on them.  Whenever Alan gave them instructions, I would turn down what I was doing to allow them to execute what he said.  Afterwards, one of the women said, "Sparring is not as scary as I thought it was going to be."

Leon, who neither Alan or I had seen in ages, stopped into the gym.  "I'm ready to do this, man.  I've thought about it, and I want to get back into the ring," he told Alan.  "But aren't you 90 years old?" Alan joked.  Leon insisted that this time, he was actually going to put the work in.  "I'm going to show you," he told Alan.  He promised to come in the next time the gym is open.

I read that Marlen Esparza lost one of the Olympic trial matches to qualify for competing next year.  She put up a video on social media to thank everyone who supported her.  I felt bad for her because she was very disappointed and sad.  It looks like the 2012 Summer Olympics -- where she won a bronze medal -- may be the first the only time she will compete on that level.

I've been observing Erica giving boxing tips to people in the gym.  If she wants to become a coach down the line, I believe that she would be a great one.  I'm also listening when she talks so I can help the kids I coach at LaFollette.

Alan let me use his kettlebell for exercise.  I had to struggle to swing it, and I didn't dare try to lift it over my head.  Alan's kettlebell is twenty-five pounds.  "I have to build up my strength more to do that," I told him.  Eventually I will purchase a few more lighter kettlebells for my gym, because I believe it will help the kids with strength and stamina.

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