Things I have learned about boxing so far.
1. It changes your body, your mind and your soul.
2. There is no tapping. There is no consent. You fight to the bell or KO or to the point at which the ref stops the fight.
3. There is no rest. He is relentless. A moment's loss of concentration and your head explodes under his fist.
4. There is no swinging of fists. Your shots flick out in a micro-second from their guard, and immediately go back. Nothing else is defending you.
5. There is no standing still. Only a perfectly balanced moving target has a chance.
6. There are moments of perfect serenity in which you float around, snapping out your shots on target and perfectly deflecting or dodging his replies.
7. Then there are those moments of total confusion in which you flail around like a drunk elephant. Those moments usually hurt. A lot.
8. If the body doesn't suck out your oxygen, the brain will. The brain lights up with electrical signals like the City of London at night. Fitness is not optional.
9. "I'm not dead" is the first thought at the end of every round. It is cause for celebration! Survival is intoxicating and justifies every moment of trepidation.
10. You live in a fight bubble. Every moment of the last fight plays over and over in your mind. Every moment of your next pushes you forward. Life burns brightly.