Lookout Below: I am a boxer now! - The Lookout - LCC's Independent Student Newspaper Since 1959
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Lookout Below: I am a boxer now!

Mallory Stiles

Mallory Stiles

By Mallory Stiles
Associate Editor

I have never been a sports person. I don’t necessarily know if it is my lack of coordination or my hate for group activities, or a combination of the two, but I have never fit into that world.

But a few weeks ago, I found boxing and I instantly fell in love. I have only taken five or six classes, but I already know it will be a part of my life forever.

I have always had an interest in different fighting styles; part of being an Army brat, I guess. Boxing was on the list, but I never thought I could or would actually do it.

Then someone told me about a boxing gym called Empower Lansing, located at 2010 E. Michigan Ave. in Lansing.

I had heard good things about this place before, and was more curious than anything else. So I signed myself up because the first class is free, and there is nothing better than trying something new for no cost.

At 6 a.m., I was walking into the door mumbling under my breath repeatedly about how bad of an idea this was. I was thinking I didn’t belong there, but I am all about pushing my limits and putting myself out of my comfort zone.

Brian Daniels, founder and trainer, approached me within seconds of me entering the space. He started wrapping my hands, giving me just enough time to tell him how truly terrified I was.

“It’s going to be fine; you got this,” Daniels said, with total confidence.

I chose to believe him and flexed my fingers while taking in the room full of murals and punching bags, smelling both sweat and a new car smell.

Daniels is an Iraq War veteran who sustained significant injury in combat. He turned to boxing and fitness to find his way to a full recovery. After that point, he started his gym to help bring Lansing some much needed healing and empowerment.

Words cannot describe how motivating Daniels and other class members can be. The atmosphere is what keeps me coming back. I truly feel like it is a family of extremely welcoming assassins.  

There is a variety of classes that range from circuit training or a full-body workout, to just a hit class where you are just punching. There are also yoga classes and muscle-building classes. The possibilities are endless.

I most often catch the circuit training class because of my schedule. It’s definitely a shower-after workout that leaves me grasping for breath, but relaxed and happier than ever.

I practice punching combos, footwork and get a little bit of muscle training, while also strengthening my endurance by constantly moving from one thing to another.

Go to the website by clicking here and read the gym rules. If at least one of these rules doesn’t pique your interest or bring a smile to your face, you can forget my pithy advice and go on with your life. But you should know I don’t bet unless I know I will win.



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