Lessons I learned at my first Krav Maga class

Jan 12, 2015

Go all out until you can’t breath and then breath for a minute and go all out some more.


This year I’ve started the year with a major health focus in mind. I’m going to get fit, and trim. My goal is to be roughly what I weighed when I married my wife 15 years ago. It’s a steep goal…but I’ve been working hard through December to put myself in a position to be successful and I feel like I can handle this job.

Part of this effort is finding something that excites me and keeps me motivated to be fit. I’ve had an interest in Krav Maga, a martial arts developed for and by the Israeli special forces, for some time. For Christmas my dear wife got me a punch card to give me a chance to see if it’s a good fit for me. I went for my first session on Saturday and I think this is going to be a great fit for me.

Here are a few things I learned.

1. I’m REALLY out of shape.

Seriously. I was working really hard trying to be big a tough and I literally started seeing things fade to black during one drill. Intense!

2. If you stop breathing you will faint.

As I mentioned above…I nearly fainted and it has a lot to do with the fact that I stopped taking a breath with each strike. This applies to business. Make sure you take a breath when you’re working hard. This doesn’t mean go on vacation. It simply means you’ve got to make sure that you don’t get so busy that you end up sacrificing everything because it was all too much.

3. Physical limitations are legitimate…but that shouldn’t stop you.

I found that I’m physically limited to a certain activity level. I worked past those limitations by taking a moment to regroup and refocus and determine a new tact. This is no different than business. Take a second to regroup when you reach a physical or mental or emotional block. If you literally don’t have the hours in a day to complete a job for a client on their deadline…make sure you express that. Make sure you tell them your limitations and that you have a game plan for overcoming. Just because you can’t win on a prescribed path doesn’t mean you can’t win. Just keep working hard.

4. The only thing that matters is going home safe

Our instructor told us that the only thing that matters when you get into a violent altercation is to go home safe. In business there are rarely violent altercations. (If they’re frequent in your business…perhaps Krav Maga would be something you should look into.) However there are times when the heat and energy of business can keep you from feeling "safe" or sane. You get knocked down metaphorically (I hope) and sometimes it feels like you got home beat up and barely breathing. In Krav Maga you defend yourself by fighting back with more force than the attacker. I’m not telling you to attack your customers. I’m telling you that you need to come to the "fight" with as much energy and heat as you need to come home feeling safe.

5. You will only recognize the pain a day later

Sunday morning I was feeling like my body had been beat with a bag of potatoes all night. All day Saturday I was feeling great. It’s amazing what happens in a day. I equate this to those times when you’re just killing it on your business. You’re signing up clients, selling ice to Eskimos, raking in the dough, basically you’re #winning. The next morning after the high of success has worn off you’ll wake up to the realization that you now have more work than you can do…or you have a ton of ice cold paperwork…or all that dough is ready to be baked now. It’s like a ton of bricks. Remember it is all worth it.

6. If your form is right you will always punch above your weight.

I’m going to brag for a second. While I was leaving my lesson I was approached by an experienced Krav Maga student. Someone who has clearly been at this for a while. He said, "You really have good form. You had some really great hits and kicks in there. Have you done some other martial arts?" I was positively glowing with machismo. I learned that when you do things right even with little experience you can impress people. I promise you I wasn’t all that impressive…but because I did things the right way some of the things I did made me look way more experienced than I am. This is really just like business. If you do the little things right you are going to make an impact on those you work with. Focus on your form and the weight of your impact will be much greater.

7. Don’t be afraid to give it your all…if you pass out in the process you may actually have done something right.

I pushed myself to the point of watching the world fade and feeling for a wall so I didn’t fall over. Somehow I managed to stay coherent. I learned something about myself in the process. I learned that I can do more than I give myself credit. Not only that but I can do it well enough to impress people in the process. If you give it your all in business and pass out or fail in the process you will learn something about yourself. You may even find that you did something right and that you just needed to adjust one tiny thing (like breathing more) to be very successful.

8. I’m REALLY out of shape.

I may not be quite midlife (at least I hope not) but I’ve been experiencing some pretty deep introspection lately. I found that I’m physically out of shape while I was working out. I also found that I’m mentally, and emotionally out of shape. I’m learning lessons from Krav Maga that I didn’t expect to learn. I hope that me sharing will help you out in some way as well.

This year should be a good year. I’m focused on making big things happen for me and my business. I’ll share some of that journey with you and hopefully give you insights into your business along the way. Go make an awesome day.


Shout out to Krav Maga of Tri-Cities.

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