After A Long Hiatus… I’m Back

IMG_20131012_104908_891It’s been a while since I posted last (a little over 4 months!), but I think I’m back… and hopefully here to stay for a while. The past few months have been crazy. Obligations at my day job ramped up quickly, eating just about every spare moment I had, even going so far as to knock dry-fire and time at the range off my radar over the past month or two. All of that culminated in a crazy couple of weeks including a 7 day period where I worked 100 hours (in addition to the time at the dojo and appointments for my wife).

The other reason my life has been crazy? My wife and I are expecting our first born son any day now welcomed a new member to our family a little over 3 weeks ago. Likely things will remain crazy for a while, but in a whole new and exciting way. With that in mind, I plan on getting back into the swing of things with writing for the blog over the next few weeks.

While I have been away I have learned a few brief lessons that apply to training. Some of these have been touched on briefly in the past, but sometimes I can be too hardheaded to learn something the first time around.

Don’t attempt to break patio blocks on grass (Or Ibuprofen is our friend)

While I was away from the blog, I performed a demonstration at one of the local town fairs. At the demo I did some tameshiwari (breaking). One of my breaks was a concrete patio block supported on cinder blocks. The cinder blocks were standing on grass.

My first attempted break? A straight downward punch.

Unfortunately patio blocks are hard and grass is soft. The pressure transferred to the ground instead of the patio block causing my hand to take more of the impact than the block. End result: much swelling and bruising and an unbroken block. Luckily X-Rays show my hand isn’t broken, but I type this with a still swollen knuckle over a month two months later. All the doctor can recommend at this point is some Ibuprofen to help what is likely a deep bone bruise to heal.

Lesson learned? Injuries suck.

I haven’t been able to hit anything with this hand or be at 100% since I hurt it. Avoiding injuries is the key to continuing your training and making progress. Want to really get good at something? Don’t get hurt so you can keep training.

Time is still always a huge factor in our training

I’ve written about this before. Time can be scarce and fitting training around our busy lives can be difficult. Sometimes we just need to let go and get through the crisis in front of us. Reducing the amount of training can help maintain skills, but sometimes rest is good for the body and the mind. My month of hell at work luckily coincided with my injury so it has allowed me to start my recovery during a period where I really didn’t have the time to train anyway.

Stress definitely affects our training

The last few weeks before I stopped my dry-fire routine due to my hectic schedule, I noticed a huge drop in performance. I wasn’t able to focus. Focus in training is very important. Only good reps count, and when your ratio of good to bad falls too low you risk doing more harm than good.

This goes back to the last point – sometimes dealing with a stressful situation and getting it out of the way is better for our long term growth than struggle with the balancing act. Distracted training can detract from your skill set more than no training at all.

Thank you all for holding out while I have been away. Going forward I’m hoping to get back to writing on a consistent basis. The next post will hopefully be up soon, but if it isn’t it should just be a matter of weeks not months.

If you haven’t yet, now is a great time to subscribe to the email list to make sure you don’t miss future posts as they are posted.

Now that I’m back, what would you like to see discussed in future posts? Please contact me or post a comment and let me know!

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