day 2717 – night training

a forced break for over a week and i’m back to my first night open gym in weeks. made sure i took my time with rolling out my psoas and did my back stretches before starting any training. during warm up, my body felt like it forgot how to move, but slowly started figuring things out as the session went on. the first few gumbis felt broken, but after a few cues from the coach, i got it back looking more like my normal gumbi attempts. over the past few sessions, i’ve been working on them and the progression has been good; looking almost like a proper gumbi. i’m determined to get it down and combo out of it

2020 year at glance

the past three hundred and sixty six days can’t really be summed up in a few words. it was a whirlwind of a year full of surprises and struggles. despite the uncertainties revolving around my job, taekwondo, circle of friends and my future, there were many good things that came about. i’m grateful for the strides i’ve taken and hurdles i overcame with ankle recovery. i’m proud of the progress of my tricks and consistency of my back tucks. i’m happy i stepped outside of my comfort zone and got my first taste of film industry. i’m surprised i finally made the all important move in taekwondo to propel me forward. most importantly i’m thankful my family and friends are staying safe and healthy during the pandemic. this year was a weird one, especially when the pace of my lifestyle has slowed significantly

day 2703 – floor views

basically my view for the day while doing my releases, stretches and foam rolling on the floor. i feel like i’m doing everything i can possibly do to speed up the recovery so hopefully it pays some dividends. there wasn’t a reason to go outside all day. i locked myself in my room and tried to get some stuff done. i wasn’t very successful, but at least i got a chance to sort through some of my thoughts

every emotion

2020 has undoubtedly presented a crazy challenge to many, myself included. the coronavirus has brought forth many changes in my life i never once thought about. it introduced “social distancing”, a new term we can’t go through a day without using. it mandated the use of face masks in order to complete our daily routines. more importantly, never have i once thought it was possible for me to deviate from the gogogo lifestyle i’ve gotten so accustomed to. the combination of everything was no shortage of an emotional roller coaster where i found myself at an all-time low. in midst of this pandemic, i’ve had time to reflect on all that i have and be grateful for what i do with passion. if i look closely, there’s still blessings during the covid times

i can only speak for myself, but the lockdown has been unreal from the very beginning because my life was flipped upside down. i was removed from basically everything that represented me. the world was full of uncertainties and the only thing i was certain about was i still had a heartbeat. it left a huge void in my life and i felt like i was deserted. some days getting out of bed was a drag because the purpose was so unclear. without the community engagement aspect, i lost touch with a lot of people and my friend’s circle inevitably shrunk. the roller coaster of emotions was far from normal for someone who normally keeps everything inside. initially i gained a bit of weight, but soon followed by an unexplained weight drop and then a loss of appetite. at times i felt beyond overwhelmed, but still, i didn’t think it was necessary to reach out to others. i had some time for self development and self discovery. i developed some coping mechanisms to get me through these tough times. the learning curve has been steadily steep and painful at times, but i’m grateful i’m still healthy and breathing. the world has slowed so i can rediscover myself

i made one of my biggest decision to step down from a position i held for many years so that i can start writing my own taekwondo legacy. it took an immense amount of courage to make that all important phone call. if it wasn’t for this covid situation, i would never have picked up the phone. there’s been many delays and obstacles that sometimes makes me question my next move, but every small step in the right direction is a small victory. i’m ever so grateful that i have the support of my many friends, students and parents alike. in retrospect, the removal of this band-aid should have been done much earlier and do what’s best for my personal growth. my time as a caterpillar has expired. my wings are ready

after dealing with a ‘bad ankle’ all of last year and spending nine months on the waitlist before learning late last year that i have a fully ruptured ligament. i was denied of surgery by physicians and was given two options: pull out of some of my sports and activities, or accept only performing at a compromised level. i was totally convinced there are things i’ll “never be able to do again” and bought into the idea this is the end. for those who know me, know where my passion lies. i wasn’t going to accept that i’ll no longer be the competitor i once was. in the darkest days, i decided i was going to quit taekwondo, give up tricking, pull out of ice hockey and stop dodgeball. giving up taekwondo was a big deal because over a decade is no small commitment. at that time very few people knew the verdict of my ankle because i wasn’t prepared to let it be known. i was simply going to remove myself without disclosing the real reason. i guess lucky and unlucky at the same time, covid put a halt to everything which forced me to prioritize my health and have urgency to do my rehab instead of blindly beating it up with nonstop activities. after three hundred and sixty five days and a lot of time and patience on rehab, i can smile and say i’m still involved in things i’m passionate about and doing things i didn’t think was still possible. i wouldn’t have imagined life if had i walked away from my passion. dedication doesn’t have an off-season

the ever-changing situation of this pandemic, no matter which phase, had a little bit of everything that caused so many disturbances and uncertainties. 2020 life has had many struggles and no shortage of anxiety, but there’s also been rewarding opportunities and important self discoveries. the fact it was not all smiles behind the mask made me appreciate the little things more. everyone is going through their own set of obstacles, but this is not forever. once this is all over, be grateful we survived

day 2702 – home therapy

nothing going on except staying at home trying to do therapy on my back. it’s so bad i still can’t bend over and pain should shoot up my spine every time i try to bend forward or lifted my left leg. i’ve never taken painkillers for any injuries or operations in the past, so it’s a little alarming i took some this time. most of my day was spent on the floor doing releases i was shown last time i had the same back injury. i also managed to do a very light circuit that’s suppose to help strengthen areas that might be contributing to the pain

day 2630 – pausing squats

haven’t picked up my own weights since the last time i squatted. i purposely didn’t document any garage gym activities for the past few weeks because i needed some time away to nurse my injuries. now that i’m just about ready to round back into normal form, it’s time to pick up the new workout my coach has programmed for me. the new program has the return of the paused squats. i did just that but skipped the rest of the weightlifting drills just because i didn’t want to push it too hard too soon

day 2566 – gratified knee

after i worried all night about my bummed knee, i had my appointment for chiro to assess my bummed knee. his assessment gave me positive because he said it’s a quad muscle strain that’s unrelated to my ligaments. i’m better conditioned to take these impact which means the strength and conditioning i’ve been doing has been paying off. now it’s just a matter of taking it easy during trainings and keeping up with self care work

day 2554 – summer star drink

figured i’d give the starbucks summer star drink a chance before its gone for good. friend brought over as an admission fee to my garage. i don’t mind the taste of it being sweet and sour, but i don’t think i’d choose to order it again. the paused squats from yesterday killed my legs, but i did some extra paused squats just to get some blood flowing. training was difficult today without much legs under me

day 2526 – box spots

using my plyometric boxes as box squat spotters once again while i’m still in the recovery phase. the box squats felt better than last time so i added an extra thirty pounds compared to last week. i’m hopeful that i can resume regular squats soon but i also understand i won’t push it too hard too quickly. there’s still a lot of squatting ahead of me so what’s another two weeks of recovery. i’ll take the progress i’m given

day 2519 – cup marks

to help my knee heal in every way possible, i’m constantly using the suction cups and electrolysis stimulation. though i don’t do as much strengthening exercises, stretches and conditioning as i should, i still try to whenever possible. sitting out has never been easy for me and it’ll always be something i won’t take lightly, so i will take every step i can to ease my pain and rehab process. the biggest drawback is these suction cups leave a large bruise when you least expect it