Friday, January 27, 2017

The Time for Krav Maga Is Now

Yesterday I spoke with a friend who just moved from Ohio to northern Virginia, where I live. I'll call him Randy. He is a successful business person who sold his tech start-up last year. Randy wears many hats: technical director at the company that bought his start-up; venture capitalist, launching new start-ups; and family man, with a supportive wife and children. He used to compete in triathlons, but the pace of his work life has squeezed exercise out of his routine.

Randy and I are about the same age (45), and he knows he needs to exercise to shed unwanted pounds and improve his quality of life. He asked about my time at First Defense Krav Maga. I told him I've been training over a year at the school, and I'd be happy to meet him for a trial class.

Randy replied that he didn't feel ready for Krav Maga, because he wanted to drop around 25 pounds before attempting a workout. He said he needed to be ready for class before showing up to train.

I understand his reasoning. Randy probably fears feeling exhausted, or at least looking exhausted in front of other students. (As far as I know, he does not have any injuries which need rehabilitation before he can safely exercise.)

I'm no stranger to these concerns. In late December 2015 I began looking for a Krav Maga program. I was also worried that I would not be "fit enough" for class. I overcame my hesitation using three tools.

First, I am obsessed by time management. I try to start new tasks at the top of the hour, not 17 minutes past the hour. I prefer to start new routines on the first of the month. As you might expect, the ultimate time to start a lifestyle change, for me, is the first of the year. When I saw FDKM's new Foundations class started the first week of 2016, my time-obsessed mind screamed "do this now!"

With the new year already here, we can turn to my second tool: age awareness, thanks to the body. When I first tried martial arts I was 19, and I practiced for 5 years in my 20s. Back then I felt like I had plenty of time ahead of me. If I didn't try a new art when I was 27, I could try again at 28, or 29, or 30.

Past 40, however, the body is less cooperative. Although I'm in the best shape of my life right now, my body tells me that there is no time like the present to engage in new physical activities. If it's becoming tougher at 45, it will be no easier at 46, or 50, or 55. The body is telling me "do this now!"

Third, my journey back to the martial arts has reminded me of the spiritual component. I'm not referring to a religious practice. I mean the ability to dig deep and find reservoirs of energy that are waiting to be tapped.

I took the pictures for this post during the KMG P and G Fall Camp last year. I was amazed to watch the G candidates test. They pushed themselves to a degree I had not witnessed in other combat systems. Certainly I had seen amazing technical feats by other practitioners, such as triple-jump board breaking kicks in Tae Kwon Do, or blinding speed and accuracy in Filipino Martial Arts. However, the fighting spirit of the G testing candidates left a lasting impression on me.

(Incidentally, I felt the same watching Combat Fighting Instructor Course participants at FDKM last year as well.) This spirit is something we need to be fully alive, and I hear it saying "do this now!"

Mind, body, spirit -- these are three keys we KMG practitioners hear Master Eyal Yanilov teach. They are the reason I encourage everyone to try Krav Maga now!

I hope to get Randy training as soon as possible. Who in your life could benefit from the life-changing experience of Krav Maga and other systems?

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1 comment:

  1. When I started practice, I was flirting with 350 pounds. So far, practice has ripped a hundred pounds off of me.

    You don't get in shape to practice. You practice, and getting in physical shape is one of the consequences.

    If I ever write an autobiography (which I won't), it'll be called "350 Pounds of Kung Fu." ;-)