I had my second massage last night and it was better than the first one. I am learning how to relax. Doesn't that sound strange? I was pretty tensed up during the first massage, but I knew a lot of what was to come in this one so wasn't nervous or surprised at some of the immense amounts of pain that I was put through. Well, not immense amounts - but some spots on my body are just plain messed up from all the banging. Especially my legs.
I asked for a little more time on my upper shoulders and neck and that was MONEY. That is a must from now on.
This break from Muay Thai has served me well. Many of my bruises are healed up already, and with another week off I should be tip-top for the next round of strength conditioning and MT.
My first massage was right after my last MT test, which was a fairly brutal affair (the test, not the massage). Lots of padwork and sparring in that last MT test. I was pretty beat up. As the second massage went along my masseuse commented that I was basically "beat to hell" during that first massage, but she didn't want to say anything. I laughed and said "I told you so". Anyway, I have three left in this five pack that I received for my birthday and I am very much looking forward to them. The masseuse is a nice woman, and we seem to get along well. Everything is very professional, clean and I think I am getting benefits. The best part is that my masseuse does work primarily on athletes so there isn't any stupid aroma therapy, rocks on the back, or other nonsense like that going on. I will probably make massage part of my fitness routine, probably getting one every couple of weeks or so.
The place where I get my massages is actually a yoga studio. Last time I was there it was empty, but this time there was a class going on. I had never seen a yoga class, and I have to admit I was chuckling to myself. It looks rather silly to me, a yoga outsider. But after thinking about it for a while, it looked rather strenuous. All of the people doing it were breathing somewhat heavily, and some of them were sweating. I really didn't care for all of the spiritual things that the instructor was bringing into the class, but whatever. Different strokes for different folks, I guess. The bottom line is that at least these people were in class getting exercise and stretching, which is more than 95% of the population can say, as they sit on the couch pounding chips and booze.
During the class they concentrated a LOT on breathing, and lining up their spine to something or other, and listening to the YOGI. That was the instructor, who referred to herself as the YOGI. What is the first thing that pops into my head when I hear the word YOGI?
Oh well, simple man, simple mind. I honestly couldn't stop chuckling at this whole scene. When my masseuse showed up we entered the massage room and she asked me why I was smiling. I told her that this scene was soooo different from the one that I usually immerse myself into.
- mellow atmosphere
- concentrate on breathing
- instructor very soft spoken
- people drinking herbal tea and eating fruit (honestly)
- soft lighting
Muay Thai class:
- loud, heavy metal music blasting at all times
- stark, industrial fluorescent lighting
- gasping for air in intense workouts
- instructor yelling and shouting at you if you are dogging it
- water if you are lucky
- gigantic first aid kit at the ready for cuts and bloody noses
- attempting to disable opponent by projecting as much force into their body as you can while trying to stop them from doing the same to you
I am not bashing yoga here, as it is something that I could probably never do or even think of doing very well - if it weren't for Carl, I would be the least flexible person on the face of the planet. And I would bet that some advanced yoga classes would be pretty tough. But it just isn't for me.