Throwing Punches

I really wasn’t feeling right yesterday. This not-right feeling had been building since the weekend and as I drove to work, it suddenly occurred to me what it was. Anxiety.

The night before, I’d called Kacey at school in response to a text message she’d sent me, asking if I could make a doctor appointment for her. Her back has been bothering her for about six weeks, but she couldn’t quite decide if it was bad enough to see a doctor. While she was home on spring break, she seemed to feel better. So no doctor. Now that she’s back at school, the pain has flared up again. When I called her Tuesday night, she was in tears. She said she’d simply been walking down the hallway in her dorm when she began to feel shooting pain down the back of her leg. By yesterday morning, she was making arrangements with her instructors to be excused from her classes and Mark went to pick her up. She’s since been to the chiropractor twice and is feeling a bit better.

So there was that.

And then there was some work stuff involving somebody being arrogant… involving a power-struggle that really had little to do with me but affected me none the less. And it made me worry. Because that’s what I do. I worry about things.

By the end of the day, I was wound tight as a drum. My friend Lori said, “Come to the gym with me. You’ll like this class I’m going to.”

So I did. The class was called Club Boxing Circuit! :-)

This class was more intense than anything I’ve ever done. For the first half of the class, we did heavy-duty cardio. We lunged. We kicked. We ran. And we did it all over and over again. Then we got to punch bags! Lori said it might be good for me if I pictured the face of someone on that bag. So I did. I got to wear boxing gloves and I got to punch that bag over and over and over again. Jab! Hook! Body! Upper cut! Faster! Harder! I punched and punched.

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 Man, that felt good! I mean REALLY good. And the reality is, I got so “in a zone” that I literally forgot about my trying day. I forgot about difficult people. I just punched and punched until all the fire had gone out of me. I was out of breath. I was drenched in sweat. By the time I left the gym, I felt like a wet noodle. And when I crawled in to bed after a nice hot shower, I drifted off effortlessly. I slept like a baby, and I woke up feeling renewed.

I highly recommend boxing as a form of therapy. I can’t wait to do it again next week!

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41 thoughts on “Throwing Punches

  1. Sounds like a great stress relief! Did they teach you moves, or did you just start swingin’? I’ve heard that it’s a great form of exercise, but I’ve never tried it myself. Hubby and I are thinking of joining a gym in place of bowling next year. You’re making it look like a lot of fun!
    Hope Kacey’s going to be alright. Is she home for the Easter weekend?

    • They didn’t teach us the moves. I probably could have found an intro class but I just dove right in. I’m starting to find that I can pick up most of this stuff after just following along for a class or two. I don’t know if I was doing it right, but it felt good!

      Kacey is feeling a little better, thank you! And yes, she’s home for the weekend.

  2. i couldn’t agree more. Boxing a punching bag as a form of working out and a means of escape is a great idea. If done correctly, nothing works the body like punching a heavy bag.

    Tim

  3. I have a 2nd degree black belt in TKD and I know how you feel. It’s an amazing release. My favorite thing that I used to do with my students was called Coma Class. I’d just drill for the full hour, with short breaks, but fairly non-stop. We’d switch up from doing it in lines, to grabbing bags and pairing up, to hitting the big heavy bags.

    Just beating the stuffing out of the things, trying to make each punch, each kick harder and more focused.

    They called it coma class because they’d all crash so hard that night they’d feel like they were in a coma:) Teaching it was rough because you’re not only doing all of it, but you’re also having to talk at the same time :)

    • Your routine sounds very similar to what we did. Supposed to set your metabolism for the rest of the day. And this class could be called Coma Class too. That’s exactly how I felt afterwards.

  4. Good for you, dear Terri. I love the whole boxing thing! It’s good to get the stress out. And, boy, do I know about anxiety. I live with it a lot. It sucks. Hang in there, my friend. (By the way, glad Kacey’s back is feeling a bit better.) Hope you have a blessed Easter weekend!
    Hugs,
    Kathy

  5. Martial arts practice always helped me unwind.
    Sounds like your daughter may be having a sciatica problem; hope it is only temporary.

  6. What do you think is at the source of her back issues? School stresses? Too much time on a computer? Ergonomic issues? I’d still get that checked out. :)

    Sounds like your friend helped you find a great outlet for your stress & anxiety – good for you.

    I hope you have a wonderful Easter weekend and get some stress-free time.
    Cheers!
    MJ

    • She has played sports all of her life and has always been physically active year round. Then she went to college and the athletics came to a halt. No more daily workouts. At semester, she joined the gym and started going to fitness classes. I wondered if the months of little activity then suddenly resuming it caused something to go wrong in her back.

      Yes, Lori is a good friend and a fun gym buddy!

      Thanks, MJ! Happy Easter to you!

  7. I agree with the above “diagnosis” of sciatica problem with your daughter’s back. Hope the chiropractor work does the trick for it.And the boxing -sounds like a really great way to work out anxiety issues and anger management at the same time!

  8. Sometimes there’s nothing better than working up a sweat and beating the tar out of something (something that can’t hit back, of course!) Glad you’ve got a friend who not only suggested it but went with you!

    • Funny, most of my life I didn’t realize how therapeutic real physical activity could be for stress. I guess I’m a slow learner, but better late than never!

  9. I can elate. I’m a worrier. My husband always says he wants to buy me a punching bag for home. We just don’t have a place to hang one. So glad you were able to release your pent up anxiety on that bag. I have to count on that ‘good cry’ I wrote about in my blog some time ago. ;-)

  10. Awesome!

    Have I ever shared that I’m sort of a closet boxer? Several years ago, my kids did regular boxing lessons. While they did that, Meego and I waited and watched and I started doing the stuff at home – gloves, handwraps, the whole kit ‘n’ kaboodle. I love it, it’s good for relieving stress, but it’s fun even if you aren’t stressed IMHO. Watch out, Terri can throw down!

  11. I got Jules a punching bag for this past Christmas. A buddy of mine is supposed to be coming over soon to give her lessons, since he has a martial arts background. I plan on being very nice to the wife going forward.

  12. During a very difficult time in my life, my son had a full body bag in the garage. I’d go out there and beat on it so hard that I’d sometimes hurt my shoulders. It probably kept me sane. Eventually, I had to figure out how to avoid getting so angry in the first place.

    I hope Kacey is OK. I wonder if some lower back stretches each morning would help.

  13. Yes, Terri, let it out!

    I do hope that you remember the difference between a punchbag with an imaginary face and the real person… But hey ho, just think of the blog posts if not! :-) Assuming you get to blog from a cell…

    Years ago I saw a news story about a Japanese company that had a frustration room. Workers who needed a break could go in there and attack dummies with wooden Bo sticks – like in Kendo but without someone fighting back. Looked great.

    Back pain should never be ignored, it causes too much misery. Hope Kacey is good now – I assume she has exams soon and does not want to be in pain during those.

  14. I always enjoyed my boxing/martial arts workouts (4 years). Good stuff. After running a few days ago and doing some hard yard work on Saturday, I think endorphins kicked in and made me feel much better for a long period of time. Exercise is good!

  15. An excellent form of stress relief! It definitely is less destructive than taking it out on a co-worker and less expensive than drinking. Of course, with days/weeks like those, I’d usually head to the range to unload my stress.

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