In January of 2011 I got some new comments on my post 9 Reasons to Start Boxing After 40. One of the women commenting was Jenny, who is 46 years old, living on the West coast. She had recently started taking boxing classes, lost some weight, and was excited about her next step in boxing: making the move from group fitness classes to private boxing lessons. That’s her in the picture.
Jenny and I spoke via email about how she is choosing to spend time (and money — she’s taken some smart and creative measures to find the money to pay for her gym membership) taking care of herself.
I wish I had learned that lesson long before I did. For most of my life I thought I could never leave the house in the evening or be unavailable to do things for my husband and sons. It was just crazy, but I know lots of women have struggled with that.
Jenny gets it. Her story is filled with the joy of boxing and personal discovery, and she gave me permission to share some of what she’s written here. May it inspire even more women to find their own strength, passion, and confidence!
Keep rockin’ it, Jenny.
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I was so nervous about my first lesson. I could tell my teacher was too; we really didn’t know each other that well.
We started from the very beginning and worked on the basics: how to stand, where to put my hands, etc. He likes a more sideways stance to your opponent. It has been hard to get used to because at first I felt that my jab needed to come from a leg twist. Now, 6 classes later I really get how I need to stay grounded and find the power through my legs. My jab is getting better.
The first few lessons we only worked on jabs and straight rights; now I’m up to hooks and uppercuts.
After a jump-rope warm-up, he gets me in the ring and I do some shadow boxing to start so I can loosen up and get my feet working. I feel like such a dork when I shadow box. I need to practice on my own in front of a mirror — I’m still really stiff.
My favorite is pad work. I love it. He moves all around and makes sure that I don’t turn my back on him, that I stay loose and maintain my correct stance while moving around. It’s a lot to remember.
And he’s also big on bopping me in the head. I’m getting better. He was only able to get me about 8 times today before I really blocked him. And that’s down from 12 last time. I made the mistake of telling him, so today he felt challenged to bop me 13 times. But he could only get in 8!! Yeah for me.
I just absolutely love it. It’s my favorite hour of the week!
I don’t even know where I’m heading with all of this or what my goals are. I just turned 46 and I want to keep getting fit and healthy. A still have a few bad pounds to lose and some good pounds to gain.
I don’t know if I’ll ever make it into the ring with anyone, but I’ll see where it takes me.