I've been training Muay Thai really hard recently and on 08 July (next Sunday) I will be fighting in Falkirk!
It's not a "real" fight, but rather an Interclub fight. This means we will have full protection on and the ref will interrupt if we are hitting too hard. It is so I can get experience in a ring and fight someone who is not in my club. You get accustomed to training and sparring with the same people so they all know my strengths and weaknesses and I know theirs. This way I will be learning how to fight against the unknown. It is good experience and if I do well and I am happy then I may be able to fight in October or November for real!
My bruised shins are nothing compare to what I can expect if I start sparring bare shin! I've been using shin guards recently you see and even though they provide a lot of protection, you still get bruises on your shin.
For fighting, I have to learn to compose myself. I often get carried away and if I done that against... well anyone that wasn't my usual training partner then I would get hammered for letting my guard down, moving wrong and generally being a mess!
I'm working on angular movement and cutting off the ring at the moment, which is difficult without a ring! This basically involves trying to be at 90 degrees of your opponent at all times. In doing this you are both maximising your chances of spotting (or creating) an opening in your opponent's guard or stance and also making it harder for him to hit you. Obviously, this is something I would imagine my opponent would have trained as well but I'll have to hope that when the time comes I can avoid his tactics!
With Muay Thai you want to be 3 steps ahead of your opponent. For example, when you throw a straight left, your left leg is a sitting target and if the straight left is followed by a right cross your opponents weight is on his left leg, which makes this a prime target for kicks! You have to make your opponent do what you want him to do to get him in position, but you also have to strike your opponent so that he covers up in a way which will leave him open for your real attack!
I'm really excited about fighting this interclub. Apparently in my weight class there are not a lot of inexperienced guys so I will probably be fighting someone who has fought a few times before, or fought many times before! Of course, this is great because I can learn a lot from someone who is an experienced fighter. If I get beat up I will have to learn fast how to retreat, block and counter and if I am able to strike often I may even be able to put my angular movement training into practice!
In other news:
Relating to my overall "lifetime" goal of being a more complete and useful person I have started (again) my Spartan health regime. More can be found out about this through a quick google search of "spartan health regime" or "anthony bova". The main focus point of this is that you eat and train as a spartan warrior would have done back in the day of ancient Greece (this came out way before the movie "3oo" by the way but Bova takes influence from the battle of Thermapolyte, the one featured in the movie). Of course I won't be living like a spartan! Mainly because they belong to a different time but also because they were all paedos!
Anyway... In physical training, the hardest thing to do is often left out by most people. I mean, how many women do you now that would rather roll about on an aerobics ball rather than do crunches? Almost no-one does burpees and a lot of people just plain ignore things like push ups and pull ups/chins or dips! The hardest thing to do will bear the most fruit. You always see things advertised like "the easy way to shed lbs!!" or "10 step guide to a beach fit body" but they are usually crap and do no good whatsoever. people always look for the eay way out. This goes for diet too.
Because of the collapse of the nuclear family and the need for both parents to work due to rising prices in taxes, morgage/rent, food and not to mention or growing obsession with "luxury" items and "celebrity" trends, we need more money to pay for everything. hence both mother and father spend more time working. Because of this, food standard has gone down hill. No-one has time to prepare a proper meal and fast foods have taken over. By fast food I don't just mean takeaway or microwave meals. half of what I ate growing up was fast food. Highly processed food designed to be cooked quickly. No thought put into the actual food or the nutritional value to the consumer at all. the otherr half of what I ate was home cooked by my mum. All credit to her by the way. I'm not trying to discredit parents who work extremely hard to bring in money so they can live comfortably with their family!
What I'm trying to say is that food and meals have gone downhill and it has become the norm for "cooking" to mean sticking something in the oven for 20 mins or putting chips in the deep fat fryer. No-one pays any attention to what they eat and those who do are all following fad diets which are just as unhealthy!
The spartan diet (as in what you eat, not a fad diet to lose weight!) cuts out all crap that we eat and puts focus on what is natural for humans to eat regardless of what the "experts" say.
For example: how often are you told that you are better cooking with vegetable oil or sunflower oil because it is healthier? That's actually wrong. The vegetable oils we use today are quite a new thing. We only recently created the technology to create these oils. The things which we used for thousands of years before (in the days when we didn't have high blood pressuse, high cholestorol levels and all manner of health problems) are being classed as "unhealthy". That doesn't make sense to me. The best rule of thumb is to follow this rule...
If a man made it, don't eat it"
I've stolen and paraphrased that quote but it is a fantastic rule! Every man made food is crap and below the standards of naturally avaliable foods. This is applied to everything you can eat. refined sugar and white flour are crap. White rice and pasta and bread are crap. tea, coffee, hot chocolate and all soft drinks are crap. Fish fingers are generally crap. potato waffles are crap. belive it or not but Shredded wheat is probably crappy too. It isn't just the ingredients you need to look at but also how these ingerdients were prepared. Rememeber that food isn't just to fill you up. Food is fuel for your body so you can be full of energy all day. You need to eat properly so your body can repair and grow and so your brain can concentrate.
The spartan diet's main principals are to eat as naturally as you can. By that we mean that you eat what man is intened to eat. The natural diet of man is to eat mainly raw fruit and veg. This is to be supplemented with properly processed grains (brown rice for example) and the occasional meat meal. Fish is to be eaten as regularly as you would eat your grains (2-3 times a week). It is preferable to eat all your food raw as in this state it is the most useful to out bodies. cooking kills a lot of good stuff in your food.
I am following this "diet" and exercising vigorously almost everyday so I can be in tip top condition and be able to be useful at any moment. I think this is the back bone to my overall goal.
Last night's meal, for example was fantastic and comnpletely natural to man.
We (my girlfriend and I) had grilled rainbow trout (I'm not eating my meat and fish raw just straight away!), potatoes (gotta cook to get rid of starch), green beans and boiled eggs. this was covered in vinagarette which Lynn made with sesame oil, white wine vinegar, garlic, dill and thyme. It was lovely, if a bit smelly (Garlic, fish and boiled eggs!).
This is something I will hopefully continue until I die and I really hope that the current trends of organic foods etc will carry on down the path to where I am now.
Thanks for reading all that (if you did). Comments are welcome.