I wish this blog could be bright, cheery, and optimistic, and that I could tell you I am at peak fitness level and still training hard. That may have been true a few days ago, but alas, I am learning that it takes just one split second decision or one wrong shift in body positioning to change everything.
Week 11 started and I was feeling great! I ran three miles pain-free on Sunday afternoon, my first two nights of training were at high intensity, and I was confident. Then I threw a front kick onto a kicking shield, tweaked my calf, felt that little soap bubble “pop” of the muscle, and I was down again. Silver lining: I am not hurt to the same degree as I was three weeks ago. I got up. I could walk. However, I have a different plan for the next three weeks than what I originally expected.
When I started training, I thought the time committment and finding the balance between family, work, and karate would be the main challenges. I felt physically fit, despite my bruised ribs. I expected muscle fatigue, soreness, bruises, but never in my wildest imaginings did I imagine a calf strain/tear. I have never had problems with my calves; this is entirely new.
When I started training, I thought that I would be wracked with anxiety about the actual testing day and remembering my content. Now, that is the least of my worries. Now, I am worried about a calf rupture. Now, I am worried about not being able to run on the last day of my test and, therefore, not finishing.
I was told to “shut it down”(by many) this week, which is the vacation week from school and karate. My original plan was to put myself through a personal boot camp this week, but if I have any chance at all to make it to the test, I need to remain fastidious and rest. This is not easy. Every day I wake up with new ideas about what I can do to keep training without using my right leg. There is certainly studying that I can still do and visualization of my forms and defense. However, there has been a shift in my mentality.
The plan no longer is: “Kick Absolute Butt on My Black Belt Test.”
The new plan is: “Just Finish.”
Hopefully, in a week or two my system will be ready for a “RESTART.”