Want to challenge yourself? Go to a boxing class. Boxing not only lets you punch things in a safe manner but also works your lower body, core and your upper body.
As you hit with an upper cut, you are basically doing a squat and then push up your body with your legs. An upper cut doesn't have much to do with your arms other than you hitting the persons face with your fist as your body comes up.
I did squats yesterday at the gym and as I did uppercuts over and over this morning I felt my legs screaming "STOP! Don't you realize I had my own workout yesterday?" I will have to watch my workouts the day before I have boxing and maybe take it just a tad bit easier on Friday's.
Boxing works your upper body big time. There is a lot of twisting and hitting.
An example of how much hitting that we do just in class:
- warm up with "pretend" hitting in the rings. We jump around, we hit the air basically. This goes on for at least 5 to 10 minutes.
- bags. We did 2 minute intervals that were 30 seconds of doing left jabs, then 30 seconds of left and right, 30 seconds of left again and then finished up with 30 seconds of fast hitting, left/right. We had a minute break and then we did this again 3 more times. My left shoulder was burning. In the instructors words "you should really feel your deltoids working today"
- we also got to have a pretend boxing match today. One of our instructors put on all of his protective gear and then...we hit him. We took turns and had about a minute to minute and a half with him. We worked on all the different types of hits that we knew but did it with him moving everywhere in the ring, with his hands moving around and at times...he was even hitting the guys back. He was pretty nice to us girls other than the smack he was saying. To me, "is someone even hitting me right now?" This was also the same time as his dad, the other instructor said "wow, she's strong". The guy in the ring with us would also tap the girls on the head a little bit for those that needed a little motivation to hit him. At the end of my little boxing match I was huffing and puffing...that is tough work! Running around, hitting someone as they are moving, protecting yourself and doing this constantly for that long of time.
- as we do sit-ups, we also are hitting some gloves that a person has on who is holding our feet. We do 30 sit-ups at least (or what we can) and hit, left, right, and then lay down and just repeat this.
Holy cow. Core this. Core that. I even heard an instructor today say that core is an everyday exercise. Pretty sure I stuck my tongue out at him as he said it and that was just my body reacting to those words. I had no physical control of my tongue. I respect him and will have to watch my tongue cause...he could really hurt me.
Instead of saying "core" though I am just going to lump all of the conditioning work together that we did and have done in class.
- sit-ups. I wrote this above too but to review, we do 3 sets of 30 sit-ups (or what we can) and as we are sitting up we hit the gloves of the person that is holding our feet. Left, right and down and then just repeat.
- push-up rows. We did 10 pound weights in each hand and did at least 10 push-ups. As we are up we lift our left hand with the weight, then the right hand with the weight and then back down. We did these today to help us get our arms warmed up to hit the bags. Everything we do is in sets of 3 too so yes, we did 3 sets of 10.
- medicine ball fun. I don't know the technical term for this exercise but here is how it works. Sit on the floor, lift your feet up and cross them at the ankles and balance yourself. Someone in front of you throws you a medicine ball and, as you are balanced, you take the ball and twist to the left and have it hit the floor and then twist to the right and have it hit the floor, return to the center and throw the ball back. The ball gets thrown to you again and next time you increase the times you twist and hit by 2. The goal is to get to 20 by the end of our boxing class. With an 8 pound ball...I can get to 20. Today, we used a 15 pound ball and I got to 16. Thought I was going to puke by 16.
- Jump Rope. Yep...the exercise that I was dreading. I can jump rope and I can actually do pretty good slow but fast is still something I need to work on. Honestly though...ever since having kids my body just isn't the same. I still have a lot of muscles to tighten and work on and jumping jacks just show me what muscles need some work still.
- ever seen a tractor tire and a sledgehammer...ever thought of those put together? Today...I got to grab the sledgehammer and slam it into the tire. Fun! And, this works pretty much all of your upper body. The key to this one was not to use your legs.
- leg lifts and leg movements. Lay down, lift your legs up about 6 inches off the floor, hold, spread feet apart, hold, put back together and then down.
Pretty sure that everyone who made it to boxing class today was going to go ice up or put something hot on our shoulders. We were feeling those punches.