Monthly Archives: March 2008

2nd Dan Video

This is video of my first fight against Eric Loveless, a professional kick boxer, bounty hunter and mountain of a man.

Another fight. I did seven fights before this one, and three after. I was getting tired!

My bo kata from Friday night.

Chair defense from Friday night. Lance Grover was a great partner.

Kon Kudai. This is my most difficult form. Sensei Spencer was a great help in improving my skill and timing.

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2nd Dan

My 2nd Dan Black Belt test started last night and finished this morning. Last night we had to perform Bahsudai, Kon Kudai and my bo kata. Saya Gyi didn’t like the way the test was going last night. My shoulder popped out on the first high block less than three minutes in to the test. That really messed with my head. I expected my shoulder to pop during the fighting, but not when it did. During our first break DeLana told me to calm down and have fun with it. I felt like I did well on Kon Kudai, which was my most difficult kata. I was much more relaxed this morning. As it turned out I didn’t have any problems with my shoulder today. We went through most of the curriculum we did last night, then added sparring/grappling and bare knuckles fighting. I fought Eric Loveless twice and he owned me. He should have, since he is huge and a professional kick boxer. He outweighs me by over 100 pounds. The fighting emptied my tank, but I felt like I was able to finish strong. I have a nasty blister on my toe, a cut on my foot, a dead leg and several bruises, but it was worth it. This was probably the hardest thing I’ve done, both physically and mentally. I feel like I accomplished a great thing. After the Black Belt Panel spoke to us they allowed us to make remarks. I took the opportunity because I was overcome with emotion. I don’t have a lot of natural ability for the martial arts, but I continue to push forward and I don’t quit. That is my talent. After 18 stitches, three broken toes, several dislocated shoulders and a bad hip, I’ve made it to 2nd Dan. And I have no intention of slowing down. The world is full of quitters. I’m not one of them.

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We flew to Houston yesterday for my 2nd Dan Black Belt test. The test is tomorrow, but I wanted to have time to relax and adjust to the heat and humidity. We stayed up late visiting with Craig and Tammy. It’s nice to have this excuse to visit them. I was last here 2.5 years ago for my Black Belt test, so it’s nice to be back. I forgot how green Houston is. I was really nervous Tuesday until I had a private lesson with Sensei Spencer Pierce who helped me improve Kon Kudai. He took the time to fix everything that was wrong with my form and moves, and my confidence increased tremendously. Thanks Spencer.

I’ve felt like this surfer for the last several weeks. I’ve been on the verge of major changes, and most are out of my control at this point. It’s made me evaluate how I spend my time and what things I choose to accumulate. Regardless of the outcome, we will continue to purge and get rid of things we don’t want or need. I want to spend more time outside, more time with family and friends, and more time decompressing. I was really stressed about these changes, but a great friend talked me off the ledge, as it were. I have a different perspective now, and I will make the most out of whatever comes our way. My 2nd Dan test gives me something to focus on, and I’m very excited to be here.

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Last night I went snowshoeing for the first time. Mike Both, Tim Shaw, Gerard Miller, Kraig Carlson and I started at 9:45 PM in American Fork Canyon at Tibble Fork Reservoir. We headed west up the mountain and blazed our own trail. The sky was clear and it was quite bright even though we couldn’t see the quarter moon. We hiked a good portion of the time without our headlamps. We heard a pack of coyotes and later found fresh tracks. We saw Orion, Casseopia and the Big Dipper. It was 43 degrees, and I wished we could have camped for the night. With such a harsh winter, snowshoeing is something that could make the cold Utah months more enjoyable. Mike, Tim and I ended the night at IHOP. The highlight there was Mike knocking over the tray of glasses as we left. The waitress put the tray behind Mike and left it, so it wasn’t his fault. But it was still funny.

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