I am 35 years old and I have fought in an amateur boxing bout.
Who’d ever have thought I’d be able to make such a statement?
When first asked (back in October 2011) if I wanted to train for this experience, my immediate reaction was: no fucking way, but thanks. Why would anyone volunteer to get hit in the face? You’d have to be crazy….
But gradually, over a few weeks of telling friends and expecting them to agree with me, instead I got talked into it. This could be a once in a lifetime type of experience. See it as an opportunity even! Really, what do you have to lose?
It turns out I didn’t lose anything that I didn’t want, unconsciously, to be well rid of anyway - namely fat, fears, fags and lethargy.
What I’ve gained is awesome too. I’m kind of an athlete now, pretty much. That still doesn’t quite fit with my residual self-image, but in practical terms, it’s true. How funny.
I’m still a sensitive soul, for sure. But I’m much more confident than I ever was before all this, and generally a bit calmer, more reasonable and balanced.
And I can definitely take a punch now too.
I entered the ring at the famous York Hall, ‘home of British boxing’, before an assembled audience of family and friends, plus a bunch of drunken strangers baying for blood, and I boxed some random girl. And I more than held my own. In fact (we think), I won. This adventure did end well, after all. Amazing.
So, what next?
Well, I think (finally) I might have found my ‘thing’ with this boxing business. But I know I can do better. That’s why I passionately want to have another go.
The plan is to take on a second fight, in the autumn. Hopefully you’ll be able to come and cheer me on….
In the meantime, thanks so much for reading this. It was fun to write. I hope you enjoyed it too.
The end x
Oh and, just for the record, I actually only watched the movie ‘Million Dollar Baby’ properly, for the first time, the night before my fight. And, I’ve got to say, I hated it! So relentlessly slow and depressing. Really awful. Sorry Clint.