Feb. 12th, 2017

graculus: (Default)
Okay, so time for a recap on yesterday's first competition - those of you reading the previous posts may recall that, in a moment of masochism, I'd signed up to do both the beginners (fencing less than 12 months) and intermediate (less than 3 years) categories and therefore committed myself to a day of jumping about and waiting about, not necessarily in that proportion. I'd been dosing myself up with cold medicine most of the week as I'd started sneezing and that seemed to work to keep me from coming down with something just in time for being inside a fencing mask for a couple of hours!

It was really nice having other folks from the club there after I'd pestered/begged persuaded them into signing up too, though the guy who was doing men's foil definitely had a tougher hill to climb - there were 4 times as many men as women signed up. Overall, it was mostly foil, a few men's epee but no women's epee at all and absolutely zero sabre, though apparently this is pretty common for this event since (according to my coach) people tend to come to sabre after trying the other two weapons first. I'm not sure whether the others enjoyed it as much as I did, so I guess we'll get a proper post-mortem on it when it's club night again on Thursday...

Anyway, there were 7 of us in the beginner women's foil, including 2 from a local university where they can apparently fence every day if they want to. I ended up 3rd in the pool anyway but lost in the semi to another student, so that was my first medal of the day. In this one, the two aforementioned students came first and second.

The intermediates turned out to be 5 of us, the four medallists from beginners and one other. I came 3rd in that pool too, having got the measure of one of the students (who I'd nicknamed Hoppy McStabbypants, as she pretty much relied on one attack, an odd hop-lunge combination) who only just beat me 5-4 this time. I also beat the fencer who'd beaten me in the beginner's semi 5-2, which I was very happy about. That pool position meant I was getting a medal anyway, but I won my semi fight this time (15-12, so it was a pretty close one) and got into the final, I did quite well for the first 3 minute period, finishing that just 9-7 down, but then didn't get back into it after that pause and lost 15-7.

It ended up with the same woman winning both beginners and intermediate, though neither victory was by any means a walkover, which also means she can't enter either competition again next year. I was a bit underwhelmed by how she yelled if she got a point against me, which I thought was a bit sad given the level of the competition - dude, it's a regional low-level competition, not the Olympics! I'm sure it was meant to intimidate me, but I just thought it was kind of pathetic.

After that, I went home with my medals and practically inhaled a greasy cheese-laden pizza, as I'd barely eaten anything all day, and then fell into my nice warm bed with a book. And now I ache all over, but not that much more than I usually do after a club night. All in all, I'm pretty happy with how I did and also that the work I've been putting in at the gym in terms of my overall stamina paid off - the issue in my final fight was with my fencing (loss of focus, I think, as much as a skill issue), rather than me puffing like a steam train, which would have been the case even a couple of months ago!

The overall verdict? Yes, I think I'll compete again but it's about finding the right event so I get more practice fighting people rather than getting annihilated early on. More practice first, though, and more time in the gym.

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