Friday, July 15, 2011

One Movement for One mile

Today was one of those rare beautiful days that I could bask in the soothing sun while training my techniques. I'm still in a season of working flow and figuring out the changing secrets of the fourth section. There is still a long way to go before I am satisfied with my spear, sword or saber skills. Yet as I walked along the bike path that moved along the highway I could only think of one movement that I needed to do. It was a movement that I had already done pretty well, but I wanted it to be better today. No I didn't just want it to be better, I needed it to be my best technique. I looked along side of the bike trail to see that every mile was marked making it easy to keep track of my distance. I put all training ideas aside for the day and ventured into what I know would be a painful accomplishment.

I began my movement slowly and thoroughly knowing that it was most important to practice this technique as perfectly as possible for the entire mile. I would make sure that my stance was as low as possible not cutting any corners as I slowly began to speed up my technique. My legs began to ache after only a hundred yards and thoughts began to come into my mind,

"That's good enough for today." or "You don't want to over do it."

I blocked these distracting thoughts by focusing more on my body flow. My hands relaxed and I was able to feel a new level of power come into my strikes after a quarter mile. I began to see the circle motions within the circle motions. Like a clock with the most complicated gear system I continued to tick across the asphalt. I hear screams from the highway of a car passing by. I am unable to tell if they are mocking me or if they are cheering for me. It doesn't matter, what matters is that I am still not using enough push from the ground. My feet dig even deeper and I can feel the balls of my feet begin to blister. I hear the thoughts again,

"That was an excellent workout...I should stop for some water."

I remind myself that there is no pain, there is no water, there is only this technique. At the half mile marker I feel my body wanting to slow down, so I do the opposite, I accelerate. I move into an impossible pace and I can hear my heart beat in my ears. It drowns out the sound of the occasional biker that passes me. I try to form some kind of smile so that they don't think I'm crazy. The smile seems to take more energy than the technique, I have to save my energy, I have to be crazy today.

I can feel the holes completely burn through my shoes. It's only minutes before there holes also grow through my socks and then through my feet. It will hurt tomorrow, but today it is freedom. I will not be a slave to my negative thoughts today. I will be as impressive as I've always wanted to be. All of the things that are out of my reach that could create frustration don't matter now. I don't have money, a car, or a house, but I have this technique. I have become this technique.

Before I know it I have come to the end of my mile. What I have attained in the end is priceless. This technique will never be the same again. It has become alive with energy in places that I hadn't known about. I have changed my technique and in doing so my technique has changed me. Overcoming an impossible goal really gives you some understanding of your worth. I lay down in the parking lot filled with a peace and bliss that only a warrior could understand. If one mile felt that good, I better do two miles next week.


Zacky Chan said...

How long did it take?! Great story. It's amazing how quickly and often the mind will just rocket into space and make you think of really unrelated things to the practice though you're still doing the martial movements. Losing it and being able to bring it back is what I'm working on these days myself. Maybe you should make a pilgrimmage of sorts with your movement ... how about a week?!

Warren Fox said...

I've decided to practice this movement the same way one time a week for 25 weeks. It's tough but I can feel immediate improvement. I am also in a season of many other movements meaning I can't put down one for the other. The toughest part of Bagua I believe is making a schedule.