Friday marked 2015 KICKS at Contact Kicks Dojo. The annual kicks to start the new year, with 40 rounds of 50 kicks plus 15 to make 2015. To be honest, I was dreading it a little, but it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be. Plus, the fun atmosphere at the dojo made the whole experience really enjoyable. I was feeling it a little the next day, that’s for sure, but it was an awesome experience and I’m glad I didn’t miss it!
Last night’s class was hard. Especially considering my legs were still a little sore from Friday’s 2015 Kicks. We went through a lot of fighting drills, working on power and stamina. As people know from reading this blog that stamina, or cardio conditioning, has been my achilles heel. Though I have improved somewhat in this area, it definitely isn’t at the level of other parts. It is something that I am determined to overcome and improve.
As part of one of the drills last night, there were four stations set up with various pad and bag work, focusing on kicks and punches. This done through a timer and rounds. After the third station and three minutes I was already beginning to be gassed. By the time I had done the entire circuit twice and ended at the thai bag I was feeling like mush. It was all I could do to muster the strength to complete the round of punches and kicks. But I did. After a short break we continued the class with other drills.
At the end of class, as is the tradition, Sensei Fogarasi spoke to us in reflection of the class. He spoke about the importance of digging down, deep down, when you are gassed, to find the strength and spirit to continue on. He explained how important that this is, especially when training for tournaments, because when you are on the mat and the round is coming to an end, it is then that a fight can be won. Or at least you can finish with pride that you gave it your all. But you can’t let up. As a mater of fact, when the last 30 secs are called, you should turn up the intensity and power of your strikes.
Like all lessons I learn from Sensei and Kyokushin, this can be applied to Karate, to sports and to life. You have to be obsessed with getting better and forging an indomitable spirit. Do what ever it takes to be successful and succeed. Someone might have more natural abilities, but that doesn’t mean they can out-determine you or out-work you. You must give it your all. Just when you think you have nothing more to give, you dig in and find your reserves.