Working up a sweat every day isn’t easy, but it got easier for James Gagnon when he discovered Muay Thai fighting.
“I would go to the regular gym and just sit on a stationary bike forever,” he says. “My body would get tired but my brain wouldn’t … so I started looking at other things that would be more stimulating.”
As it turned out, Muay Thai — which rolls strength, cardio, skill and coordination into a single sparring session — was just the stimulation James needed. Like other forms of martial arts, Muay Thai requires complete focus for the duration of the workout, making it easy to forget you’re exercising. The fitness benefits quickly follow.
“It is a violent sport and there’s no way around that,” he says. “There’s someone that is going to be trying to knee, punch, kick and elbow me as hard as they can — and I have the same opportunity to do it to them.”
Sound intimidating? James thought you might say so, and his advice is this: don’t be afraid of square one. “Everyone at any level had a first day, and that’s an important thing to remember,” he says. “Just try it out.”
There’s something primal and invigorating about getting in the ring and striking your way to fitness. Worst-case scenario: you don’t love Muay Thai, but you feel good because you went outside your comfort zone. Best case: you might just find that it’s your #ideal sport too.
Ready to knee, punch and kick your way to your ideal shape? Check out James’s video to get inspired. And don’t forget to subscribe to the IdealShape YouTube channel – we’ve got more great videos coming up that you won’t want to miss. 😉
By Chelsea Ratcliff