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09 Mar

Better Living Through Violence

Posted by Craig Nugent

Better Living Through Violence

There wont be any cool training montage for me.  No cheesy 80’s music with slow pans over me panting on the side of the mat between rounds, or close ups of the sweat on my brow and concentration on my face with a bar across my back.

The montage for me, for most of us, for the non-professional athlete living in the real world of course would look much different anyways.  It would have to include some dramatic shots of being stuck in traffic trying to get to class after a 10 plus hour workday, waking up 2 hours early to lift sluggish and standing like a zombie next to the coffee pot, there would have to be all kinds of panoramic views of the range while I plod away trying to fit 50 rounds of bulls eye shooting into the only hour I have free that week and my phone going off behind me.  Reality isn’t so glamourous.

And there we are at competition day.  Ive managed to get the day off.  We have freeze frames of getting choked out, of running right past a target I forgot on my walk through, of checking for my name on the bracket, the score sheet, of going home and auditing the experience and setting goals over and over.

This isn’t easy.  Living a real life and attacking with every ounce we have a multi-disciplinary approach to interpersonal violence.  Grappling, striking, strength, conditioning, pistol, rifle, shotgun, and don’t forget the knives and emergency medical training!  The reading list alone would kill most people!

Whats the driver?  Why do we do it?  Why do we love it?

” We just had a near-life experience”  ~Tyler Durdin

I can tell you for me.  It makes me a better person.  Im more capable every day, more secure, stronger, healthier, smarter, faster, more aggressive and more peaceful.  Its problem solving on another level, and outside the experience of most people.  And it’s the people.  There are few closer friends than my training partners.  There are guys whos names I cannot recall but who I respect for their demanding top game or whom I only ever see by name at the top of the score sheet after a match.  The people who do this kind of work are some of the best people in the world.  Its better living through violence.  Its experiencing intimacy and empathy and doing the hard long work and improving while getting to be a part of that process in another’s life.

Who are my heroes?  My inspiration? Its the guy who brings his newborn to the gym so he can get some rounds in.  The single mother sneaking away to swing a kettlebell in the living room.  Are you working and going to school and finding the time to do what drives you?  The 40 year old dude who never played a sport in his life showing up for his first class?  That dude has my respect!

Do work!

Article by Shawn Lupka of www.anti-fragile.net