Presenting at CSUN, The 2004 Technnology and Persons with Disabilities conference

<i’m moving this post to the new karate category>

Last night, I had my first karate class in about eight years.  Back in the day, I was a 1st kyu brown belt (the next rank is black) who had participated in regional and national competitions.  I was told that you don’t ever lose rank, but I don’t think whoever said that had ever tried to get back into karate after a long hiatus. I was out there trying just to keep up with the white belts.  The toughest thing will be retraining my body to tense and relax at precise moments.  I was having a hard time keeping up, because i was way too tense too often.  I wasted a lot of energy and got overheated way too quickly.  The worse part about starting over is that your mind remembers what to do, but your body does something totally different.  I never thought I would be exhausted after doing just a few beginner katas. I’m not too sore today, but I am sore enough. It’s going to take awhile for my calves to forgive me for the abuse.  By summer, they’ll take me for their new look.

Going back to class reminded me of some great moments from my former club in Mississippi, including

  1. 50 karate students practicing our bo’s out on the beach in the sunset
  2. Losing my first (and only) sparring match at Nationals 5 to 6. I cried my eyes out on the side of the mat when I realized that an entire year’s worth of daily training was over in less then 3 minutes. Much later on in life, I realized that the daily training was its own reward, not any medal at any competition. Hey, this speech worked for the soccer team I coached when they lost the semi-finals in the state championships. =)
  3. Being able to do 750 sit-ups nightly. Seriously. It was my way of dealing with high school.
  4. My former sensei in Miss. had to pause one of my free sparring matches because my mom started hyperventilating. It was for purple belt, so it was at full speed. Later, she told us that all she could think about was how much money she put into my braces.

I really like this new dojo.  The people are very friendly, and the atmosphere is very comfortable. The sensei allowed me to wear my brown belt in the beginner class, which makes me train harder, because I know other students are going to look at me for an example.

I can do 25 sit-ups comfortably right now. Just 725 more to go =)

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