Just wanted to share this here. I’m still writing horror and things are on track with Dark Exorcist being released soon. I’ve also begun my own MMA site. Here I do fighter interviews, post news and updates on everything in the sport. So feel free to stop by and share!
Yes, it’s true. This week I had my first injury as a martial artist/MMA fighter trainee type. Tuesday’s sessions were fine. I was feeling tired and a little groggy. During Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, I did some free rolling at the end of class, and commenced to getting my ass kicked. BJJ is a tricky sport. So many things seem counter intuitive to what you would normally think you should do in a fight. I guess that’s why its so effective. You end up on top of your opponent, and they have an arm exposed and you think you’ve got them. Next thing you know, you are on your stomach and being choked. Either that or you end up in an arm bar. So its just a matter of me learning not to go for the obvious, and find the combinations that work to my advantage.
Tuesday night I practiced some wrestling moves with some of the gym’s regular fighters. Alex “The Great” Hernandez who is about to have his first pro MMA fight was showing some takedowns. No, this wasn’t WWE style wrestling, but regular amateur style. I wrestled a few years in high school, so some of the moves are familiar. However, my body was not in complete cooperation with my memory. Good thing is, Alex was able to show my wasy to improvise on takedown techniques to compensate for my size.
After some time in wrestling, Gabe and I went and did two rounds on the heavy bag. Thursday I felt I did much better during BJJ. I still tapped each time, but I wasn’t gassing out as quickly, and actually came close to a few submissions of my own. Just couldn’t quite get the holds locked on right. Either way, felt good to make some progress and not be an automatic tap out to my partner. Also was nice to know I was at least giving him a workout, even though I didn’t know enough myself to beat him, he still had to work to beat me.
That evening, we did more wrestling moves. Found one takedown I really liked. I forget the name of it. For a big guy like me its about perfect. You shoot in, grab both legs low while pressing your forehead into the opponents mid section and just pull his legs to you while driving forward. He will end up flat on his back. However, in an MMA match, I could end up in his guard, so something I will want to practice for sure.
Later, Armando worked with me on the pads. during pad work, I threw a right hook wrong. I do it right most of the time, but I got going with some quick combos and threw it the hook with my fist pointed down, instead of my thumb facing up. This bent my wrist at a funny angle and it hurt. Though that one didn’t hurt as much right away. It wasn’t until I threw some other combos when I was feeling it. Any right jab or uppercut sent a stab of pan through my right wrist so from there I had to go light. Part of the problem also was I hadn’t gotten myself any wrist wraps yet. Those might have prevented my wrist from tweaking so easily.
The good side is, I did four full 3 minute rounds on pads with Armando. Considering barely a month ago I was fainting and puking my guts out after half around on the pads, this is considerable improvement. Two of the rounds we did in a 6 minute stretch with no break. So my cardio is improving for sure. My technique seems to be coming along as well. More than anything, I just need to keep pounding away at my mind and body and I will be in fighting shape in plenty of time.
Today though, my wrist was still throbbing, so I went to the doctor. X-rays were clear, so he suspects a mild sprain. He put in me in a wrist brace, said no bag or pad work for a week and if it still hurts next week, then to go see a hand surgeon since there may be tendon damage. I don’t think this is that serious. I can still roll and shadow box, just no direct punches. So I will do whatever to keep in shape and hopefully by next week I will be back at pounding the shit of whatever my trainers put in front of me.
I wanted to take a minute to mention something as I go along this
journey. I don’t want it to come out later that people think I
cheated. To explain this, there is a little background.
Almost two years ago, I was suffering from severe anxiety as well as
bouts of depression and mild fatigue. After a few trips to some
different doctors, I was put on an anti-depressant. It worked great on
the anxiety and depression and as far as moods went, I felt so much
better. However, the fatigue began getting worse. A lot worse.
Weight started packing on, over a six month period; I packed on
upwards of 60-80 lbs. On my days off, after something as simple as
walking outside to get mail, I’d fall asleep for 3-6 hours. I had
trouble waking up in the mornings. The mildest activity tired me out
beyond belief. I was also having trouble staying awake at work. In
addition to all this, my man parts weren’t working so well either. By
this point, I was so fat, I could hardly find the thing, but it was
almost numb to the point of uselessness.
So back to the doctors I go. Finally I found a doc who ran some blood
tests and discovered I had low testosterone. Really low. At 38 years
old, he said my “T” was low for a 68 year old man, let alone 38. So he
placed me on some androgel packets. It took FOREVER for the stuff to
have any effect. He had to double my dosage finally before it began to
work. Also amidst these tests, we discovered I had high blood pressure
and sleep apnea. Both probably due to my weight and all three
afflictions affecting my tiredness. Wife had noticed for awhile that I
was snoring louder and louder at night, shifting a lot in my sleep and
at times would stop breathing completely before jumping awake.
The high blood pressure meds however, caused even more sleepiness; to
the point I was falling asleep at work and had gotten in trouble over
it. So back to the doctor I go. This time he gives me Nuvigil, which
is for people with sleep disorders to help stay awake. It worked
great, and still does work.
With the renewed energy, I started working out again, as mentioned
previously and have gotten to where I am now. I stopped the blood
pressure meds and nuvigil for a bit to see where I was at, but
everything was still rather high, so I went back on it.
In order to help my body develop lean muscle and burn fat more
efficiently, I was prescribed HGH or Human growth hormone in addition
to the androgel. With this, you administer shots to yourself for two
weeks, then stop for two week, then give shots again. You do this for
a minimum of three months, six months max. Not sure if I will be able
to go more than a month as the stuff is a bit pricey, but we’ll see
what kind of results I get.
I wanted to share this, since testosterone replacement therapy and HGH
are controversial in sports and fitness circles. There is a lot of
misconceptions by younger folks that this is something used to “make
you 20 again.” Problem for me was, I didn’t want to feel 20, I just
wanted to feel 38 instead of 70. Not too much to ask I don’t think.
After 35, men’s bodies begin producing less and less. For me, for
whatever reason, the levels dropped and pretty rapid rates. Enough to
wear me out and balloon me out to almost 340-350 lbs.
So since I’m sharing this journey, I didn’t want anyone to think that
I cheated by using such substances. All of these are prescribed to me
and being used under the supervision of a physician. I don’t want to
be like some of the trainers you see on biggest loser who say how they
worked hard to get fit, only to find out they had a surgery or used
HGH or both or whatever. Since HGH is a banned substance by most pro
sports, as well as the US and International Olympic committees, there
are a lot of preconceived ideas about it.
My use of these things is limited to getting my body back on track.
The androgel I will probably always be on, just to maintain normal
testosterone levels, which will prevent a grocery list of health
problems. The sleep apnea is already beginning to fade. I don’t snore
as much or stop breathing like I was before. I hope to only get better
from here. You all are welcome to draw your own opinions on the