KickstarterImage As I mentioned 10 days ago, I recently decided to crank up the training. Worlds are coming at the end of October and I'm damned if I'm going to let myself get in denial about how close this is. (Two and a half months. That's not a long time.)

I have a lot of work to do, to work my forms, my sparring techniques (Must. Use. Zone Defense.) my strength, endurance, and general badasserie. I've never been to Worlds before and have no idea what kind of competition I'm going to encounter. I must show up there and be at my best.

Do you know how many different ways there are to be the best you can be?

You're right! There's only one. And it's to work, work, work. Relentlessly. I work out hard six days a week, and very lightly one day a week. By "hard" I mean at least three to four hours a day - I run in the morning, I do regular karate classes, a lot of weights classes for strength, a lot of precision kickboxing classes for speed and accuracy, a lot of kata training, and a lot of training for sparring. Basically I train all the time. I get up super early in the morning to get my computer work and other work out of the way (still have to pay the bills, feed the kids, wash the laundry, clean the house, etc.) then train until fairly late at night.

It's a difficult pace alright, but I need to maintain it up until maybe two or three weeks before the competition, when it will be OK to slow down a touch and maybe get down to two-three hours a day. We'll see. I have two main goals in mind. The first one is to find the right balance between training like a beast and not get hurt stupidly. I pulled an adductor last week and while it only really bothered me for one day it's been a touch tender and it's forced me to baby it a bit. Which is fine. Pulled muscles need to get back to their old selves real quick to avoid lasting pain and potential damage, especially at my age. If that means replacing burpees with plain pushups for a day or two, well, so be it.

The bigger goal I have though is for the post-Worlds me. See, I've been living inside this head for a while now and I'm starting to know how it works. And I know one very important thing about myself: at the end of the tournament, no matter what happens there, I will be able to tell myself that there is no way I could have worked harder. That is a supremely important thing for my own peace of mind, to know that I left it all on the floor and that I did not miss any opportunity to prepare for the big one.

I don't half-ass anything. It's a very tiring sort of life, to do everything you do with everything you've got. But I'm not interested in anything else.