Every Martial Artist Should Cross-Train In Boxing Part 3

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*Authored by White Dragon. 

        I did need that rest last weekend and I felt better afterwards. Often times if you show up at the right time they have a “stomach class” where you do different ab workouts and calisthenics for 15 minutes, each exercise lasting for 1 minute. So you do 15 things.  Everyone goes into the ring and works out in a circle. It is usually led by a high school girl who is a coach.

Week 3

Monday–        The first day of the week today I did 30 minutes elliptical, 5 rounds of the speed bag with medicine ball situps in between rounds, stomach class,  some shadow boxing and then about 5 rounds of the heavy bag working on the 1-2 combo and my left hook. Before I left the coach said I need to pay more attention to my left hook. Unlike MMA a proper boxing left hook is a close in punch and not an arching outward, afar away punch like a haymaker you often see in MMA which ends up slapping the opponent with the front of the knuckles. I need to make sure my left hook is tighter and I get in close to the bag to hit it, or let the bag swing bag and then I hit it. The left hook is a close quarters punch if the opponent has closed the distance on you.

Tuesday–        I showed up and the coach had me do 1 round of jump rope and to quickly work on blocks with another student. Then we did stomach class for 15 minutes. After that we took turns throwing punches and using the first 2 blocks catching the jab and blocking the cross punch. We took turns then did a more free flowing drill in the ring. After that I did 5 rounds of the speed bag with medicine ball sit ups in between, 5 rounds of shadow boxing with jumping jacks in between, and 6 rounds of the heavy bag working on my technique of jab, cross, and the 2 blocks and moving around it with a defensive drill in between.

Wednesday–        Today I will take the day off because I have not slept well enough to recover lately. I also will just teach one of my Taekwondo students tonight.

Thursday–        I got to the gym and did 5 rounds of jump rope and light shadow boxing in between rounds, 5 rounds of speed bag with 10 pushups in between rounds on pushup bars, then the coach asked me if I want to spar. I said yes, so after I did 1 round of shadow boxing I put on my gloves and got a headgear. I sparred a few rounds and it was fun because I sparred with guys who helped me learn and were not out to beat me up. I was able to hit the guys a few times. I stayed my distance out and just kept to 1-2 punches and palm blocking. I need to work on blocking better and to always keep 1 hand near my face for protection. After I sparred the coach says I’m doing well and have really fast punches. I just need to work on being relaxed and calm. I was able to throw some combos too and I got hit a few times but it wasn’t that bad. After that I did 2 rounds on the heavy bag before leaving. I also asked the coach if I could practice the overhand right because one of the guys I sparred with threw that at me. I asked the guy about it and he tuaght me how to do it. The coach, though, says do not practice it and stick to the jab, cross and hook punches only and to keep the hook at face level. Do not throw it low because to do that I need to know amore advance movement off to the side and I need to focus on the basics first. He said the basics will win fights and beat people and it is most important. He also reminded me about the straight left hook that is from the distance. It is a straight punch and slightly arched. You can throw it right after the right cross punch. It’s not the same as a close in left hook that punches sideways as it still punches straight. It was great to learn a new idea about punching and get some technique help.

Friday–        Day off, gym is closed. My left wrist has been sore for a few days. Working the heavy bag is tough. I always work it lightly now days.

Saturday–        Because of obligations I did not train today. I may or may not train tomorrow.

Sunday–        I took the day off.

Week 4

Monday–        I did 45 minutes on the elliptical. Then 5 rounds speed bag with medicine ball situps in between, 5 rounds shadow boxing with pushups in between on pushup bars, 5 rounds heavy bag with defensive drill in between, and then after this I sparred some people for about 4 or 5 rounds. It was hard and I got hit enough. One 0f the best students hit me pretty hard in the nose. Yes these guys do not hold bag too much nor care. It is not easy sparring when the only weapons I have are jab, cross, and hook and only know 2 blocks. I was told only to train those and nothing else, but then the guys I spar are doing wild looping punches and keeping their hands down etc. It is very crazy and kind of annoying. In a way it is counter productive for my learning but at the same time I am learning about fighting and how I react when hit. It takes a ton of stamina!!!

Tuesday–        25 minutes elliptical. Before I could reach 30 the coach told me to join the stomach class. After stomach class I did 5 rounds of speed bag with medicine ball situps in betweenm rounds, 5 rounds of shadow boxing with 10 pushups in between rounds on pushup bars, then 3 and a half rounds on the heavy bag with a defensive drill between rounds before the roach told me to get my stuff on and spar in the ring. I sparred 2 rounds with 2 different opponents. The first guy was older and he did not hit bag but dodged a lot. The second guy was a chubby and round man and shorter but had incredibly fast hands so it was hard to defend but I managed to defend a lot. I did get hit hard in the face and my lip was bloody. But getting hit like that I recovred and got back into the fight even more aggressive. During this round I did manage to connect with a 1-2 combo and it felt good. I did some funny stuff like using Taekwondo fakes and the coach yelled at me, “What was that?!?!” hahaha. He said I am improving and doing good. It was an intense workout!

Wednesday–        Today I took the day off because I was very sore and also very sleepy all day. Boxing workouts are tougher than you think.

Thursday–        On this day I I did 30 minutes elliptical and made it through 3 and ahalf rounds of the speed bag with medicine ball pushups in between rounds before the coach asked me to spar. He said you do not want to be tired when sparring. So I sparred 2 different guys, the same guys from last Thursday, for 3 rounds total. So I sparred one guy twice. It was okay, I got some okay hits. I pulled up a quick jab and also a straight right at another time. I worked on trying to avoid punches. I started out slow, but my last round I took on the aggressive mode. I know I would be torn up and punched all over if they wanted to get me in the corner, but these guys were nice and worked with me at my level. I do realize when I want to throw a right hand I tend to pull it bag. Part of the reason I punch awkward is the head gear is so big and forces your hands out with the big gloves so my guard is very wide compared to if I had bare fists holding my hands in Taekwondo. After sparring I did about 3 rounds of the heavy bag working on my 1-2-3’s.

Friday–         Rest day, the gym is closed.

Saturday–        Today all I did was teach one of my students Taekwondo and did not train boxing today. My wrists are very sore, I must have had incorrect punching form on the heavy bag. But it seems even with correct form you get sore. I have had bad wrists for many years to begin with so I must be prone to injury like my shoulder and knees. I will rest from impact today.

Sunday–        This day I did 3 rounds of jump rope with 15 pushups in between rounds. 5 speed bag rounds with 15 pushups in between rounds. Then i did 5 shadow boxing rounds with medicine ball situps between rounds. And finally 5 or 6 sounds on the heavy bag with the defensive drill in between rounds. I did not feel like sparring today because I felt out of it. Probably tomorrow I will spar.
I found out that the guy I sparred a week ago who hit me in the nose really hard is known to be a jerk. He does not hold back for anyone and will not work at anyone’s level. Instead, he will just try to hurt you and beat you up. He is known to do this all the time and people have told me not to spar with him. One guy I talked to today was an amateur fighter who I sparred my very first time in the ring doing a drill where he could not hit back. This guy is very nice and encouraged me about boxing and fighting. He said the anxiety I feel and fear is normal and if I could pass the test of fighting that guy who is a jerk then i can definitely do boxing. He told me that jerk guy has had 50 amateur fights and sparring him in the gym is seen as a test. If you can survive him you can do boxing. So I feel somewhat encouraged about it. But my nose still hurts from when the guy hit me a week ago. The guy I was talking about about this, the amateur fighter who is nice, also gave me pointers on some blocks and pivoting motions. I found out he also used to do Ishin Ryu Karate and did tournaments. Very cool.

I have now completed 1 full month of boxing training!

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White Dragon is a 3rd dan Taekwondo Black Belt with over 19 years experience in the Martial Arts and head instructor of the White Dragon Dojang Martial Arts Training Program. 

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