Well, so far I’m actually doing what I set out to do this month and have started exercising between classes. My in-laws recently moved interstate, and my father-in-law has passed along his old weights and benches to me before they made the move (along with his blower-vac, which should make cleaning the floor of the shed much easier now!), so I’ve got some new additions to my setup. I’ve also put my boxing station together, and while it isn’t bolted into the floor as securely as I’d like, I’ve piled on plenty of weights on each corner to stabilise it for the moment (I need a slightly wider masonary drill bit to finish the work) and it’s behaving itself. At the moment I’m starting off each session with a short workout on the bag to loosen the muscles up, then crunches and leg lifts before getting into light weight training, alternating exercises during the week to target specific areas (chest and torso/arms/shoulders/etc). At the end, I’ve tried to slip in a little bit of lighter bag work, but so far it’s been pretty crappy since I’ve been a bit exhausted afterwards 😛
I’m not aiming to bulk up too much, primarily I’m looking at increasing muscle mass to the point of being toned and with a degree of greater physical strength. I realise there’s a correlation between size and speed when it comes to martial arts, so my aim is to hopefully balance things correctly (as opposed to over-doing the weight training and becoming a sluggish meat-head :P). At the same point though, because of my condition I don’t have the same level of agility that an able-bodied martial artist would have, so I figure the increased muscle around my chest, back and torso will help to deflect at least part of the damage caused by a blow (i.e. the ‘suit of armour’ concept — turn the muscles into an organic suit of armour to withstand strikes where possible). It will also mean that, in combination with proper technique and correct use of biomechanics, I could deliver greater impact with a strike to make it count.
Plus, I find it an enjoyable way to augment my training – it builds up a sweat, normally leaves me feeling pretty knackered afterwards, and is hopefully going to reduce the amount of ‘padding’ around my midsection 🙂 I think the really good part is integrating bag work in there, and down the road I’d also like to put together a makiwara so I can alternate or complement bag training with makiwara work too.
So yeah, so far so good, but we’re only two days in 🙂 My muscles are really sore at the moment, but I’m of the opinion that the best way to loosen up sore muscles is to give them a workout, so I’ll be looking forward to training tonight, especially since I missed it last week because of my mangled stump. I’ll add another post before the end of the week with a roundup of tonight’s training for those interested.