Walking into the boxing gym there's a sign that reads "be prepared to sweat!" Crappp, um, OK, it’s not too late — I can turn around, I thought as I start to grasp my hands together nervously. Aaron, my Filipino, buddy is just staring at the ground and saying I feel really intimated! Not off to a very good start, obviously. After being greeted by some very enthusiastic ripped girl boxers at the front desk, we are told to fill out some forms, after mutually deciding to make things less complicated and put in the CMC address not our home addresses in Asia, we nervously sign our names, you know incase we die by hitting the bag too hard!
One of the girls from the desk then proceeds to get us wrapped and prepped as I nod and smile, glancing round at the many people coming in, who all seem to be pre-wrapped and ready to knock my teeth out. As she asks if I have any previous experience I casually place my arm over my t-shirt, which has a Muay Thai Asian girl on it and say, "no, not reallyyyy." She must be thinking, "here we go, here's another wannabe boxer who will last two minutes!" As I saw her mind unwind, I vowed to at least try to prove that I won't be discouraged easily.
As we warm up, and I notice how strong she had to wrap my boxing wrap because my wrists are easily snappable, and can quickly bend in very weird angles. Trying to put my game face on, I frown a bit and kind off jump from foot to foot as people stretch. A huge Marine muscle man walks past as I kind of shiver a little inside, praying that I never have to spar with someone his size. Just as I notice the incredible size of the guys in the room muscle wise, I nearly bump into a girl about 10 years older than me with a full-on six pack and a game face like no other. OK, just act like you’re five times bigger than you are, I think as I puff up my non-existent chest and stance my legs apart.
When we signed up for our first free class, we had to put down what we wanted to work on. Mine was toning my muscles better so that I could basically be more of a threat (haha). I literally realised how badly I needed this class after the first five minutes of being there!
Warmup is meant to be easy — easy my arse! Literally military style yelling to drop down and give 25 push ups and then do squats for a minute whilst holding and bouncing it. Are you kidding, I thought, my legs feel like they are burning into flames and my arms are shaking like a puppy scared of her surroundings. As sweat pours off my face, I notice Aaron has his game face on, so I frown even more and growl a little bit as I pretend I know how to do a hook at the head then three jabs, and a triumphant (pathetic little yell) at the end.
Looking around people seem to be giving me that "aww, bless her" face as I try and do 300 jabs, at a fricken 500-pound monster boxing bag in front of me, whilst my eyes go blurry with sweat. Yet as I get more into the class, and work through the burning pain, I think this is actually exactly what I need.
I don't believe that girls have to do self-defense to be safe — hey, I have God on my side! But boxing is a great way to keep fit, interact with the local community and to teach myself how to be more forward as a person. Boxing so far has also been teaching me how to push myself beyond the pain and beyond the need to give up. I am looking into becoming a member of the gym not because I like being intimidated, but because it’s always good to push yourself and to try something new, whilst being healthy too.
As my amateur boxing career takes, off I will make sure to inform my faithful readers of adventures as they continue!