Friday, December 29, 2006

Boxing Day

In Canada, December 26 is Boxing Day. This year, I celebrated Boxing Day on December 29 with my first trip to Gleason's Gym for some real, honest-to-god boxing training.

Since my office moved to DUMBO in May, I've been thinking about going to Gleason's. But there was that whole marathon thing going on, and time was at a premium, so I didn't do anything about it.

On Wednesday, after a nice long holiday break filled with wine and cookies, I caught up with a couple of my co-workers, one of whom told me he'd been to Gleason's and thought I'd really dig it. He gave me his trainer's card, and I called him immediately to set up an appointment.

This morning I met the trainer, John Douglas, for the first time. On Gleason's Web site, John says, "I like training ladies because of their never say die attitude and I would never deny them the opportunity to box." Right on. I'd told him on the phone that I've never boxed before, and he was really reassuring. When I walked into the gym today I felt a little nervous and giggly about it, and John was super nice the whole time. I warmed up for 10 minutes on the treadmill, then got down to business. First, John wrapped my hands (which made me feel totally hardcore), then we climbed into an actual ring (!) and he talked me through some basic combinations (just into the air for starters). A bell rings every few minutes (I'm not sure of the exact timing, but around 3 minutes), and during the "on" time, people are training, and in between "rounds," everyone rests. There's a 40-second warning bell before the round ends.

After a few rounds of air-punching, I donned a pair of white 14 oz. gloves, and John held up pads for me to punch. That part was really fun, and really exhausting. We moved next to a bag that's suspended from the ceiling and floor, and John instructed me to left-right jab it for the next few rounds. I kind of started to get the hang of that. We then moved to the speed bag, which was tricky to get the hang of. I did get better after a few minutes of practicing, and I'm looking forward to trying that again. We ended with a few dozen situps and crunches.

The cost is really reasonable - today I paid a $15 gym fee, and $25 to John for an hour of training. If I end up going more than once/week, I'll join the gym for $80/month. I loved working with John - he called me "Champ" a lot and was really supportive.

And as I write this entry, I've finally settled on a New Year's Resolution:

Kick Some Ass.

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