You’re a pretty fit person. You workout. You’ve got some muscles. Well then my friend, it’s time to take your fitness regime to the next level. Yes, it’s time to give Muay Thai Boxing a try.
Now, this form of exercise is not for the faint of heart. It is guaranteed you will be a complete ball of sweat by the time you are done…with just the warm-up. But hey, when traveling, it’s fun to try something new. And when in Thailand, you want to do as the Thais do, right?
When we visited Koh Lanta, three of us in our group of six wanted to give Muay Thai boxing a try. We considered it to be not only a workout but also a cultural experience. Double win! Now let me set the stage for you. My daughter and her husband, both of which are avid marathon-running workout junkies in their 20’s, and little old me were going to try out the class. Sure, I workout, but I am also no longer 20. However, I like to think I’m tough, and sometimes might think I’m still 20 so I figured I would get in the ring and show these two youngsters how it’s done, even if I may be a bit….er….”old-er”. Our hotel, the Pimalai Resort and Spa, offered an introductory Muay Thai class. Awesome, I thought. How bad could an introductory class be? We entered the ring and were greeted by Boy. Yes, that was his name, and yes, he was practically a boy, but this guy was no joke. He had lean muscle on top of lean muscle. After taping our hands and outfitting us with some sweet boxing shorts, Boy began showing us some basic Muay Thai moves. Now, this form of boxing encompasses pretty much every possible body part. You aren’t just punching. You are also kicking, and engaging muscles you never even knew you had. Still, we were feeling pretty tough, so we were totally gung-ho about getting started.
After about 15 minutes of hard work, Boy told us we were done with the warm-up. Wait, that was just the warm-up?!?! We were all already dripping sweat. And when I say dripping, I am not exaggerating here folks. Like every time we would throw a punch, we would also throw huge globs of sweat all the way across the ring. I thought to myself, at least I was so sweaty no one would notice if I started to cry! 😉One thing I forgot to mention. We had been out in the sun too long the day before resulting in major sunburned feet (see our group picture above). Not the best thing to have when you are kicking a punching bag with bare feet. Ouch!
It was about at this point I began to wonder if I could keep up. But hey, I can play it as cool as the next guy, so I put on a smile and kept on putting in 100% of the effort I had left (granted, that wasn’t very much). We moved on to punching bags, burpees, and sit-ups before we got back in the ring. At this point, I passed the hope that I would keep up and went right into fervent prayers for my survival. This was some tough stuff! We each took a turn sparring with Boy and honestly left everything we had in the ring.
We hobbled out of our Muay Thai boxing class exhausted and more than ready to do some damage at the resort’s breakfast buffet. Besides being so sore I could barely walk up stairs for a week, I was glad I was able to hang in there for the entire class. We all really liked the experience. Boy was a great teacher, and we felt pretty tough.
In addition to a visit to Phang Nga Elephant Park, and an island tour by boat put a Muay Thai boxing class on your list of must-dos when in Thailand. You will get a great workout and have created an awesome (albeit sweaty) memory unlike any other. And don’t worry, if I could do it, you can too. Just don’t plan on taking too many stairs for a few days after…make that a week after…or maybe two. 😉
If you are planning a trip to Koh Lanta, get some more pretty nifty tips and reviews here: