Going Nitrous

Discussion in 'Dog Brothers Martial Arts' started by Crafty Dog, Oct 7, 2019.

  1. Crafty Dog

    Crafty Dog Active Member

    Woof All:

    One day back when we were working together at the RAW Gym in El Segundo (a world class MMA gym in those days) in the mid 2000s, (so I would be in my early-mid 50s and still pretty close to the fighting shape of my DB years) I was watching my friend Chris Gizzi (the Green B1ay Packer linebacker you see in "Kali-Tudo 1" who is now the strength and conditioning coach for the Packers) work with a San Diego Charger lineman (6'7", 290 lbs) to help him get ready for Camp.

    Chris called me over and said to the man "Marc knows kung fu."

    Uh oh , , ,

    Some friendly banter ensued and somehow we wound up doing a bit of friendly slap boxing. Obviously the man could have splattered me; fortunately he dialed down to where I could play too. I pulled off a really slick move (the one I focus on in KT-3) and he complimented me. "I've never seen that before. Let's do some more." Then he timed me with a cross like I have never been timed and I complimented him.

    "That was a Lennox Lewis cross." (LL was a heavyweight boxing champ for a time).

    "Pray tell, what makes it a LL cross?"

    He shared the answer with me.

    Afterwards, Chris asked me how I thought I would do in a real fight with one of his NFL buddies. I hemmed and hawed, and Chris said to me "A lot of these guys are from really tough backgrounds. They may not have formal fight training, but they've been in lots of fights. They are great athletes who are real comfortable with contact. They will "go nitrous" at you for about forty five seconds and then they will gas out. The question is whether you can survive the forty five seconds."

    A few weeks later Chris was working with another of his NFL buddies. This one was about 6' and 260 lbs. Again Chris playfully set up a friendly engagement. We agreed that I would not be able to stop the man from tackling me (Duh!!!) and agreed to assume I would survive the tackle by guiding him into my guard (in the real world not a given!), so the game began with us with MMA gloves on and him in my guard.

    As Chris had predicted he surged forward with moderate contact simulating continuous violent punches. I could feel that, as Chris had predicted, he had no martial arts training so I was able to walk on my upper back and shoulders by pressing on his head and traps so as to keep his head low on my body. Almost nothing landed. After about forty five seconds he gassed and I began simulating some elbow spikes on his head. We smiled and shook hands and from the sidelines Chris gave me a wink.

    As I got up and walked away one of the pro fighters in the gym gave me a little fist bump of respect-- the old man had represented the gym well-- a moment I cherish.

    Over the years since then (15?!?) I have reflected on this matter of "going nitrous" and its role in fighting. About ten years ago, I started working on my 100' dash at the football field at the high school at the end of the block where I live.

    At first I was stunned to realize how many years it was since I had explosively exerted myself. At first, my times were hideous (22 seconds or so). Gradually I worked down to being consistently in the mid to low 15s, with one glorious day where I hit 14.24 (ideal conditions: Chinese massage two days before, really good night's sleep, great bowel movement that morning haha, etc).

    Then hip arthritis became a problem and to avoid injury I stopped sprinting. Eventually after a few years of this, in December 2017 I had the hip replaced. Amazing! Wish I had done it sooner!

    When it became time to sprint again (spring 2019), my first time coming back I was at 18.10. A pleasant surprise-- not as bad as I had feared it would be-- and in a month I was down to 16.40. I had visions of getting back into the 15s in fairly short order.

    Then a long term issue caught up with me. Apparently my right shoulder issues were due to the development of a rather substantial bone spur and in June at the DBMA Camp it finishes fraying its way through the supraspinatus tendon. #$%^#$%^!!! Very painful @#$%@#$%!!!

    Having trained my way out of many injuries over the years, it took me about six weeks to realize that whatever it was it was something I was not going to be able to fix on my own and I went to see my surgeon who promptly diagnosed it.

    Surgery was August 16 and this was followed up by six weeks in a high tech sling and a lot of pain. (God bless percocet and prunes!) The sling came off about two weeks ago-- what a blessing to be able to move my arms in natural counter balance to my footwork! With this, I returned to my basic agility drills at the football field.

    Last week I worked up to lightly sprinting, and this week I did it for time. I did not push myself, the shoulder is still tender and I did not want to irritate it, but even so I hit 19.04. Given the seriously diminished level of activity for the last few months, actually I was rather pleased.

    The point is not to impress with my times-- for they are not impressive. The point is to stay in touch with and develop as best as we can our ability to "Go nitrous". If we compare ourselves to others as we get older it can be easy to become demotivated as we fall into the mind trap of young male hierarchical competition , , , and quit.

    Around DBMA we say "If you ain't the lead sled dog the view is all the same. No one beats everyone all the time. Everyone looks at someone's butt sometimes. So be not humble and be not proud; respect others as you respect yourself."

    In DBMA we define our mission as "To walk as warriors for all our days". One piece of that is to know what your nitrous burst is. Without knowing that it can be hard to assess well your best course of action in a given moment.

    I remember watching Guro Inosanto go really hard on the Muay Thai bag for 45 minutes non-stop some years back (his Academy on Rayford in Playa del Rey). We watched with jaws hanging. I went up to him afterwords and he said to me "It is good to stay in touch with where you are really at."

    Exactly so!

    And so I continue my 100' dash work. At the moment I am confident I can get back into the 16s and aspire to the 15s. I aspire to to getting to where I feel like working the 220 and the 440 as well.

    I am just an old man having a good time.

    The Adventure continues!
    Crafty Dog Marc Denny

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