My biggest problem being patient with this “work hard and it will click” approach is that it requires a bit of faith that “the process” is working. I have no problem trucking along, but it’s unsettling to go through the motions, make progress in baby steps, and just continue assuming that one morning I’ll glove up and things will be the way they were pre-op - with my feet having that rhythmic bounce, my jab that stinging crispness, that right landing with that clobbering thump that made eyes spin.
But alas, onwards I trudge, trusting that persistence (and about 100 rounds of sparring) will be the glue that makes my body, mind and routine harmoniously “click.”
As I continue to try to hit my proverbial groove, it’s becoming clear that I’m going to have a pretty tangible, conventional set of challenges to overcome. And, because I’m self-conscious about my tone on here, I want to clarify that these are challenges, not complaints. Challenges are encountered but ultimately overcome…but they’re hindrances nonetheless, and until they’re addressed, patience is tried and progress can’t be made.
- Logistics - My old office was a 10-minute walk from my boxing gym, but now my work-to-gym commute is about 45 minutes. This adds strain schlepping my gear around in crappy weather, makes it more likely I'll just go home first and then run/lift/crosstrain rather than embark on another round-trip commute, and even sometimes interferes with my sleep cycle due to bumping my whole night back an hour or two from running around the greater Boston area. Hey, lost time adds up over the months...
- Summer - Summer is my busy season. From a baseball league I play in once/week to traveling to remembering the "play" aspect of a work/train/play balance, there seems to always be a scheduling conflict (or a vice) altering plans.
- Tearing up my face again - I snickered typing this, but hey, I'm a banger. I outwork, outhustle and outgun my opponents. Having a mental block take me out of my element - intentional or not - would be as devastating to my end-result as not being 100% in-shape.
- Weight - Having fought at 140, I never had problems making 152 for a fight last year, which is where I had my long streak of success. In fact, I'd say the added strength and comfort with my weight was a huge reason for my success. But now? Well if I had a functioning scale that didn't seem to be stuck on 165, I'd actually know how much I weigh... but I'd still probably have anxiety that I'll have a lot of weight to cut in the sauna the week of my next bout - especially since a lot of this new mass is due to me bulking up while I wasn't boxing, rather than just letting myself go. Some definite changes to my weightlifting routines (and maybe, just maybe, my drinking habits) are in order...
In the end, that will be the difference between success or falling short when the boxing “busy season” starts in September – whether I plow through these challenges and train in a crisp, straight line to the top, or meander through this briar patch of obstacles and let them slow me down.
At the end of the day though, my feet are moving and slowly but surely I'm progressing forward. It’s going to take a lot more than this to keep me from my titles.