I let myself be… a ninja turtle.

When I came back to the gym in America, I was nervous to train. Sounds crazy, right? I mean these people are basically family to me and I was nervous to train with them? Well, I was. I knew I wanted to fight again, but I wasn’t sure when. I was used Keatchatchi, to having P’Tom (my trainer in Thailand) direct me. I was used to the training style in Thailand. I hadn’t held pads in a year. I hadn’t conditioned like Khanomtom Muay Thai does in over a year.

I was worried I couldn’t keep up.

I was worried people would be critiquing me,
picking at me quietly trying to see if I actually learned anything.

I was in a low state of confidence for varies reasons outside of Muay Thai (health issues, moving, missing Thailand, etc.) and I almost let it drown me, I almost let it take away everything I worked so hard at improving. I got back into the gym, going every day. I let myself be. I let myself be out of shape, I let myself be a little shaky, a little nervous. I accepted the work I had ahead and told myself I’d get back to where I was, it’d just take time. I let go of being upset with myself and focused on gaining my confidence back.

Slowly, but surely, I felt better. I spent hours at the gym, happily, getting to train with people I hadn’t trained with a long time. Each person offered a different idea, a different style- technique focused, power driven, speed, trickiness. Each person pushed me in their own way- getting me to relax, take things less seriously, train hard- but always, always enjoy it.

After awhile, I thought more and more about fighting. I was nervous to ask. In Thailand, the promoter (my trainer) just asks you. “Hey, you – fight?” Yup, sure. I’m in. 2-3 weeks until the fight? Why not. Here… I had to ask for a fight. It made me nervous. I don’t know why. Maybe because I’d never fought here or I was nervous I’d get rejected? I’m not sure, but I asked. I was too late for the card that some of the fight team was on and so I’d have to wait. But I asked, I mustered up the courage to ask all on my own. My confidence seemed to be coming back.

So, I finally started a fight camp for a fight at the end of May. 8 weeks out. Pretty long camp, would I be able to make it? Keep up? I was training everyday, but I hadn’t been able to train with fight team in the evenings because of work. I tried to push those thoughts aside and told myself I was ready for the challenge. I hadn’t had to worry about cutting weight in Thailand, so I was glad to have the extra time to loose the weight I needed to.

Week 1- I was thrilled. I loved being able to train with everyone again. I was so happy and really ready to push myself.
Week 2- Friday night training, fine. Great even. Sitting at dinner? All of sudden I was not so fine. I shook it off as much as I could. The next morning? I thought I was going to have to rip off my arm.
I thought I could get through it and went to train. Nope. Not a chance. I ran with my arm to my chest like I was saying the pledge to minimize movement and made it through 2 rounds of hitting pads before I called it quits. I just laid on the floor. I figured I’d be okay by the end of the weekend.

2 weeks later, I’m just starting to hit again. It is the MOST FRUSTRATING THING to not be able to train and it’s only been 2 weeks. I can’t imagine months. It’s one thing to take time off and travel or do other things, it’s another to want so badly to be training and can’t. I felt like I was failing everyone. I can shadowbox with minimal to no pain now. So, that is really all I’ve been doing. I haven’t been able to train with fight team and I felt like I was being a … excuse me, Mom… a little bitch. I kept explaining myself like that would make it better. That just made me sound whiny. The other day I barely talked at all and …. just seeing them go outside to train almost made me cry.

Then someone asked me to say something to motivate them to train. They were joking around not looking for anything serious. I was shadowboxing and realized, hey I was doing something. I was moving. I was training. I told them, be thankful you can train. You have legs that walk and arms that move. Some people can’t. Some people would trade anything to be up and moving around. Don’t waste the gift that you have. Do it because you can and appreciate every moment. For me, it went back to the idea of enjoying training again. I will heal up eventually and this will just be a memory. Instead of worrying what everyone thought about me not training, I should have been just focused on getting back into the gym for myself and enjoying the things I could do. Sure, it’s frustrating to be stalled conditioning wise and it will suck getting back into it… it will really suck, but I’ll do it and when I think I can’t do anymore, I’ll remember how frustrated I was when I really couldn’t and I’ll push myself harder.

I’m starting back tonight. Fingers crossed all goes well. =)

I will let myself be a Ninja Turtle and be thankful I can be one.
I will let myself be a Ninja Turtle and be thankful I can be one.

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