Punching The Air

By Tsholofelo Lephuthing & Samantha Barkley


With every New Year you begin to think that you should do more this year. To take on something new. You are convinced that you will work harder and change your life, you even imagine yourself studying harder than before. Call it the New Year fever. Included in our new year resolution was taking on something to boost our fitness. We tried the gym thing last year and let’s just say, it did not turn out as well as we expected it to be.

This time around we knew better (or so we thought). That is why we joined boxing. We needed a trainer to push us into actually getting fit and not to give up. Boxing seemed like it would do just that. We became even more certain of this decision after watching Victoria Secret Models boxing for their envious bodies we could only gain from this process. Honestly, boxing looked like a fun dance that could be done with ease. All you have to do is punch the air so we recruited friends to join us.

“It will get us the bodies we desire” we said.

“You will become fit with ease” we said.

“This is going to be great!” and they were convinced being all amped with the New Year fever it did not take much convincing. Little did we know that we’d be dripping with more tears than sweat and there was a whole lot of sweating.

The first class we had, we expected to do nothing too hectic. Just the basics like how to punch the boxing bags with a trainer’s encouragement (because that is all boxing is about of cause!).

That first day was a nightmare. The venue had no oxygen. We were literally inhaling each other’s carbon dioxide. There were no punching bags. There was nothing along with the lack of air or windows.

There were trainers. There definitely were trainers! They made us run around the venue for 10 minutes or was it forever? I don’t really remember. Then we had to do jumps in between squats, lunges and push ups. We were told you can never stand still. A lesson we learnt the hard way when as a consequence we had to do extra squats. Then some more squats because we did the squats wrong since our behind needs to touch the ground. Then lunges just because the trainers felt like it. You do all this with a faint smile on your face not because they have encouraged you too but rather because you fear the wrath of suicides and squats.

Your body and brain hates you. You begin to question your existence. You decide you will never go back. Your lungs don’t only need oxygen but now you need water too. Thirst became a real thing that first boxing class.

It lasted for one hour that made us reject our own bodies and we hated ourselves for going to boxing. Our bodies had us crying. The tyrant trainers had us wanting our mothers. When you begin to sweat on your scalp you know that it is real. Boxing is no simple air punch sport to lose a few calories and look great. Your inner self conflict becomes real. There is no way to hide from yourself with boxing.

Needless to say that we left vulnerable and exposed. Our bodies appreciating water, air and life itself. The pain had us exhausted from crying but we did it. Boxing was death and life in one and we love it all the same. Even after all of this, we returned the next day.

Eventually we got to do some punching.

Moral of boxing: never underestimate it. What you see from others took time to get there. Do join a sport it gets easier. We need to be our own fighters as women so fight for your body.


For motivation check out Gigi Hadid Box.

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