You take all of the intensity of the training and funnel and filter it through the years that make up your training career, to the months ahead of the fight, to the six weeks you spend in training camp, to the six days a week you spend physically peaking before the fight, to the six hours you sit at the venue for the fight with your stomach in a knot and acid in your mouth, to the six fleeting minutes that make up an amateur fight, to the just six seconds it takes for the ring announcer to call out the winner’s corner and name. It is one of life’s ultimate experiences….
…There is something profound in the self-knowledge gained from putting your entire being into something, regardless of the outcome. For me, it is the realization that I can be aggressive, can want to hurt somebody if I have to. That I can get out of my own head enough at least to get through a fight. And that I can fight back from substance abuse to finally compete in a serious sport, even at 32.
From fighting, I have realized even more than ever, “Why wait?” I used to think the absolute worst thing that could happen was that you tried something and you died. That’s stupid—you die no matter what. The worst thing that can happen is that you learn something about yourself. read the rest from MTIL
While on the bus en route to Myanmar for our visa run, Kevin handed me the phone and told me to read a wonderful piece on fighting he’d just discovered. I had just woken up from a nap and rubbed my eyes as I focused on the screen. Just as I became more aware in my mind as one does upon waking, I became aware within the writing by the familiarity and beautiful expression of it’s truth. It’s remarkable that I can be on a bus, weaving through jungle punctuated by small villages and large bus terminals and be reading a thoughtful and strongly personal article on fighting by a guy from Cool Hearts in Philadelphia, someone I believe I’ve seen fight on Friday Night Fights.
If you are a fighter – or better yet, if you are thinking about fighting – definitely read James’ account of what fighting feels like and what it has meant for him and his recovery from substance abuse. Strongly vivid, very real.