On Saturday, my trainer filmed a round of my padwork with his phone and had me review it later to check my form and look for mistakes.
To any athletes or aspiring athletes – of any stripe – if you aren’t already doing this from time to time, get on that. It’s a revelation.
(No, you don’t get to see it. I did send it to my stepdad, who is a former boxing judge, and I did let my boyfriend watch it, but I don’t think it’s for the consumption of any random curious person.)
My first thought, I’ll admit, wasn’t related to my boxing skill (or lack thereof). It was: who the hell is that person with all the limbs? Is that me? WHERE DID ALL THOSE LIMBS COME FROM? Okay, I know I’m tall, and I know I have long legs, (I’m reminded every time I try to shop for pants) but I don’t think I ever fully realized exactly what percentage of my body is limb until I watched myself landing jabs to the body from a distance of about three feet. It really is like watching a blonde, pasty, female, super-unpolished Paul Williams.
(Incidentally, how excited are you about the upcoming Paul Williams/Sergio Martinez rematch? It would be hard for anybody to be more excited than I am, that’s for sure. I love Williams because he’s a lanky southpaw, but I love Martinez because he’s super-fast with amazing style. I can’t even pick a side to root for!)
And then, after I got over the initial shock of equating that goofy-looking Fantastic Four reject with the person I see in the mirror every day, watching video of myself was incredibly instructive. A few mistakes were things I’d been told I was doing incorrectly, even sort of got that I was doing them incorrectly, but until I saw them in action I didn’t have a clear picture of how to correct them. I learned more watching that two minutes of fuzzy footage than I have in some entire hours of bag drills.
I also learned what I’m doing right. Which is actually a whole lot more than I suspected possible when I took this up. I mean, don’t call the Olympic team or anything, but it’s apparent that I’ve worked hard and learned a lot over the course of this past year. It’s nice to have any reminder that it’s all paying off.