Sunday, November 19, 2006


My body is teaching me that I can not force it to do more than it allows. My left arm, my hips, and my knees have been giving out on me this week. I'll be doing my push ups, or whatever, and suddenly that limb, or joint will lock, or give up totally letting gravity take my body to the ground.

To be honest, classes have been extra hard this past month.. In Shotokan we are preparing for the visit of our Master. Also, there has been demands on conditioning in Kyokushin.. things like 500 strikes, 500 blocks, and 500 kicks in a row interspersed with various exercises like push ups, sit ups, squats, etc. etc, and that is just the warm up.

This sudden total weakness of my body parts really bothers me. I've been able to push past the burning pain of my skin condition as I train, the sharp pain of the constant muscle cramping as I train, the dizziness, nauseau, and fainting spells through my determination, and will power, but I can't push past total "giving out" of the muscles. They won't go, and thinking strong thoughts won't MAKE them go. Suddenly there is no output in that arm/leg, and I collapse.

I tear up at the thought that I cannot work past this weakness. My body says "thus far, and no further.." and I cannot fight through that with will power. I have to adapt, slow down, even force myself to not train to allow those muscles, and joints to come back to what they were. And that drives me crazy.. because I had been gaining a little, and now I have to baby myself again.

I have stopped all extra home training ( except for Bo staff) for a whole week.. and I can't explain how much that bothers me. I'm not depressed, it is more of an anger, and frustration that boils within me. I spent most of my whole childhood laying in a bed coughing with bronchitis (an effect of my father's chain smoking) wishing that I could go out and play.

Now that I'm an adult, and I have the capacity to train, I'll be darned if I'll allow my body to dictate to me what it won't do.

I'm not stupid, though, I will not damage myself trying to force the joints to perform when obviously they are not doing well.. but I'm not going to throw in the towel and accept the limitations that is happening. I'll find a way to strengthen the muscles, and joints, whether by diet, exercise, or stretching. Sure.. sometimes when you are climbing a mountain, you might find yourself at a position where you cannot continue going upwards, and you have to backtrack a little to gain a better vantage point, and better handholds.


Anonymous said...

I know you have said you are not stupid and you will not damage yourself, but I'll tell you right now, listen to your body. The human body is an amazing piece of machinery, even an intelligent one. If it shuts down, it's because it needs to, not because it simply wants to limit you to piss you off. Again, listen to it.

I wouldn't want to hear that you are out for a month, or longer, not only of home training, but or any training, or worse...

Take care, Steve.

Anonymous said...

Dizziness, nausea and fainting? Realize that training is a catalyst for growth and improvement. Actual growing only occurs during rest. Over-training can actually produce flu-like symptoms. Always stay connected to what your body says. Maybe you should take off a few weeks to re-charge yourself. You want to feel energized, not sick. You need a break, take it.

supergroup7 said...

I'm listening, Steve. I just wanted to express my frustration on my weblog.

I understand, John. I've lowered my output for a good week already, and continuing this for a couple more days. However, seminar is coming up, and I'm expected to attend, and to train extra this weekend. *embarrassed shrug* The dizziness, cramping, and fainting has been part of my karate walk from the very first day of training years ago. There wasn't a class that went by where some part of me was giving out.. but never my joints before now. My dizziness, muscle cramps, nauseau, and fainting aren't as constant, and strong now. I gather that I've improved in my blood circulation through diet, and exercise. but it still occurs once and awhile.

Anonymous said...

Part of our training is to be able to know our physical limits. This can help us modulate our intensity during a workout so that we can go thru a workout without going over the limit which can have a very negative effect on our long-term health.

My best find is an osteopath and he would give me a hard time if I had such symptoms because of training...

Please be careful because this can affect your long-term quality of life. Training must be fun. Nausea, dizziness and fainting don't sound fun to me...

How is your iron intake?

Anonymous said...

Just to add on my last post...

Imagine one of your husband would come up and explain to you what you explained to us.

What would you tell him?

Take care,


supergroup7 said...

How is my iron intake? I've never really thought about that... I don't know.

I can assure you that my stamina, and conditioning has improved immensely, and that I rarely suffer from fainting, or dizziness when I train now. Usually it will happen in the summer months when the heat is high. Also, I have learned about the importance of when to eat food, and drink water before hard training; that important balance of not too much, and not too little.

I would give my husband the same advice that you all have given me. I realize that I need to listen to the warning signs of my body, and to build up rather than force it too much, and break down. This weblog allowed me an outlet for my inner frustration at the whole deal.

[Mat] said...

I understand the frustration.

Haha, it sucks.

But, viva la vida!

You already know what to do. But it sure is frustrating. I know. This year being my year of injuries, I understand.

Chin up, you're doing good.

Hope that body heals and gets back to being strong.

Anonymous said...

I wanted to address the movement in Bassai Dai you questioned. To me, the block and subsequent arm movements have to do with blocking a two handed grab (attempted bear hug or choke). Breaking the attempted grab, the arms swing around in an arc and strike the attacker in the temples, the jaw, or the ribs.

supergroup7 said...

I checked up on my iron intake: Not good at all.

I'm on a special combination diet for my health.. and well.. My diet is similar to a vegetarian one. I do eat meat, but it is very infrequent.

I found this website that addresses Iron deficiency, and it says:

"Total dietary iron intake in vegetarian diets may meet recommended levels; however that iron is less available for absorption than in diets that include meat. Vegetarians who exclude all animal products from their diet may need almost twice as much dietary iron each day as non-vegetarians because of the lower intestinal absorption of nonheme iron in plant foods. Vegetarians should consider consuming nonheme iron sources together with a good source of vitamin C, such as citrus fruits, to improve the absorption of nonheme iron "

I didn't factor in concerns like iron as I kept my diet. Hmmm... I know that I'm eating plenty of high vitamin C foods such as tomatos (usually at the same time that I'm eating beans, and salad).

I'm supposed to eat a daily amount of about 18 milligrams. As a vegetarian, I'd have to eat more milligrams of iron. UNBELIEVABLE! Have you any idea how many cups of beans that would be? About 3 - 4 cups of kidney beans per day.

I don't eat that much iron then.. honest.

But then, Maybe I might surprise myself. The bananas that I eat contain 2 mg. Each slice of bread that I eat has 2 mg. I do eat baked potato with the skin, which I've read is both a high source of vitamin C, and iron at the same time, and which can provide up to 50% of my daily intake of iron (about 9 mg).

Thank you for bringing this to my attention. I'll definately keep it in mind as I make my meal choices this week.

supergroup7 said...

Yes Frank, I've seen that application of that movement in Bassai Dai.
My question is why do we bring our feet together? We could do the same movement with our feet apart, and that would provide us with a more stable base, wouldn't it?

Jill said...

For the pain in the knees, I know what it is. I've got it lately when we are training, espacially when whe do the dragon stand.
But please be careful. Like my master sansei, and my sanseis say "Only do want you can"