bjarvis: (Default)
OMG, I hurt. Like, I'm going to swallow an entire bottle of Alleve with a vodka chaser kind of hurt. But it was fun!

I had my second karate class tonight. As before, it began with a lot of stretching to warm up. And then it really got into leg stretching, the kind I haven't been able to do in 45 years or so. My upper body is very flexible, but the kind of lifts & extensions required of my lower half far exceeds my current abilities. But damn it, I'm going to try!

We also did some non-contact sparring, a lot of punches, a front kick, a side kick and an arching back kick. Extensively. This part wasn't painful except to my ego: my balance isn't great and I need more careful deliberate practice to get the precise form internalized.

There were some nice compliments about how I was keeping up, and some surprise it was only my second class. I'm sure they're being kind, but in some ways I am doing better than others. My weightlifting has trained me to ensure I have a very solid footing and maintain a low center of gravity. My upper body strength can generate a damn wicked punch. Lifting and cardio have given me good endurance.

All that said, my ass was solidly kicked (metaphorically) tonight. I was sweating profusely, overheating and nearly gasping for oxygen by the end. Of course, that's what a good workout is suppose to do, so victory is mine!

My self-assigned homework is to keep stretching so I can lift my knees higher, aim my side & rear kicks higher and bend my upper body lower. I will also need to rehearse each of the kicks we covered to improve my form.

OCD superpowers, activate!
bjarvis: (Default)
I've noticed for some time that my local LA Fitness gym isn't exactly top shelf. It's OK: it has space, a broad range of equipment, a nice yoga room and a cycle room, a large basketball court, and an intermediate-sized swimming pool. Not bad, but not great.

Over the years, the carpeting has started to show its age. The lockers in the change room are in need of repair. The shower heads and fawcets in the showers are well past their prime. It's not a horrible gym, but it's far below the level of the LA Fitness near my data center, a shiny & gleaming new facility which sets a high bar.

Sadly, the only other LA Fitness convenient to home or work is the one in Wheaton, MD. It's the same distance from home as the downtown Silver Spring one I frequent, but if my preferred gym is ghetto, Wheaton is an outright slum and/or shanty town. It is a sad & miserable place, suffering from extreme mismanagement and neglected maintenance.

My local gym has been announcing renovations "any day now" for a while, but they've finally marked a date in the calendar. As of February 20, we will lose the change rooms and showers: there will be some sort of toilets made available, but I dread to think what form that might take. The gym will close completely for March 6-20 for complete renovations.

I can deal with the lack of change rooms & showers: I'll simply dress for the gym at home and have my shower when I get back to the house. The two week closer is a bit more serious: I don't want to be out of circulation that long so it seems I'll either have to find excuses to head to the data center more frequently so I can use the shiny Sterling location, or hold my nose to head to the Wheaton gym. Both options are less than ideal, but it's only for two weeks. My latest membership contract is up in May so at least I'll have a couple of months with the newly renovation version before deciding on committing for another contract.

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