Comfort zones and the burden of familiarity

Afternoon all I thought I should check-in as promised. Of late I’ve been busy and as such, that means I’ve not found nearly as much time for writing as I’d like. But hey, here we are again you and me and as always it’s good to be back.

Last week, unlike the week before, was incredibly quiet training-wise. Less can often be more and slowing down from time to time never hurt anyone. This week, however, I’m back on the horse and looking forward to another week of martial goodness.

I’ve decided to spread my wings a little and start training a little further afield as well as at my current camp. Of course, my loyalties lie with where I’ve trained for over 3 and a half years (I think it’s closer to 4 these days) but me being me I always need to be able to put in the work to make sure I’m progressing.

Although the standard and state of play at my current gym is good it would be nice to train and spar with people that have a good amount of fight experience behind them. I have enough of a tough time with some of the folk I spar with at present but I want to make sure I keep pushing myself so if that means stepping even further out comfort zone then so much the better.


And that’s the problem I always seem to face doing what I’m doing. Comfort zones, Familiarity. I need to get better at this but some days I’m happy where I am. I tell myself I need to train 6 times a week 5 minimum but some weeks like last week make excuses and barely scrape past 1 or 2 sessions. (Being honest, last week was a bit of a glitch in the matrix but you know what I’m talking about.. right?)

I’ve found that routine although important in martial arts can allow for static to develop in myself if I don’t find ways to push myself. It’s why I love fighting so much because it always gives me something positive to work towards. Even on my worst days, I try to find a goal. Something I want, or something I need to work on other than my strengths. At the moment, everything feels tough but that’s a good thing because I know I’m learning.

I find myself pep-talking myself if it’s just me on the bags these days and making myself do more if I stop halfway through a 2 or 3 minute round.. it’s something I noticed when I trained in Thailand. Every day we would finish with 200 knees. If you stopped in the set you would be told to start again and do 300. It’s that sort of mentality I want to get back to because it’s that kind of training that makes me tougher inside and less prepared to give any quarter in the ring.

I’ve discovered that fighting is 90% mental and when it comes to myself there’s always something left in the tank. It’s very easy to shut down under pressure and not cope but understanding that pressure is where you develop your skills and your coping mechanism isn’t as easy to accept. We look for the easy way out a lot of the time but being courageous enough to fight even when it seems that’s all is lost is what in my opinion defines us as martial artists.

There’s more to our art than facing off in that square ring but I’ll be honest when we do it brings out the absolute best in us. I’m looking forward to training hard this week and stepping a little further out my comfort zone than I was the week before and it’ll be fun seeing how much I can push myself, in the meantime have a good week, train hard and just like that last time.. I’ll see you on that road.



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