Back at taekwondo after missing two classes last week and my body is feeling it. I had - and still have - a cold all last week which had been compounded by the yellow dust which left me lethargic, a dry throat and with a lengthy headache. I think this week I'll be doing a lot of stretching. My kicks were pathetic today and IF I'm going to get better then I need to be more flexible.
Last week we started learning (properly) the new poomsae. The one we're currently studying is number six (Taegeuk Yuk Jang) which will be for the red belt. Previous to today we'd only practiced half of the movements but we ended up finishing the entire pattern. It felt difficult but as the class was ending everything clicked and I didn't want to stop practicing. I'm now very confident of passing the belt test, be that next week or the week after, health permitting.
Looking at my calender, and if all things go according to plan we could be taking our black belt tests at the end of June. I say according to plan because that depends on passing the upcoming tests, being in good condition and reaching a standard that means we are ready to take, pass and excel in the test. I don't want to make up the numbers. I want to pass and look as good as I can and not be the token 'foreigner/외국인' who is given a pass just for turning up.
That's about eleven weeks to go so plenty of time to improve and to reach some kind of peak condition. I'm used to these type of tests but nerves will start to kick in the nearer it gets to it. In order to do well I need to loose some weight, get fitter, become more flexible and practice a lot more. That means exercising more, getting out more and stopping the drinking for a bit. Easier said than done. A plan at the very least.