#otakuFIGHTER No. 2 – Training for a Joe Higashi cosplay.

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Currently, I’m trying to burn off the fat and build some muscle for next year’s comic con.  I’m gonna be cosplaying as Joe Higashi from the Fatal Fury/KOF series.  Just in case you needed a quick reminder:

And since this requires me to be shirtless, I’ve gotta do this right.  I’ve already increased the intensity of my training sessions at The Boxing Club.  I train for 4 days a week, and this is how it usually goes down:

My training sessions at The Boxing Club usually come in 3 parts.

Part 1. Muay Thai – As I’m training in the art of Muay Thai, class becomes really important.  My coaches and training partners all help to improve our technique, speed, and strength.  The conditioning drills and workouts are very intense and challenging.  Sparring…is a whole other beast.

Part 2: Running – Coach Caine (featured in the previous entry) makes me run an additional 30 minutes after EVERY CLASS I take.  The run is done at a medium-to-high pace, and serves as my stamina/cardio training.  This is the hardest part of my training sessions, and it usually leaves me pretty winded.

Part 3: Weights.  I use the various exercise machines to build muscle strength.  Depending on the day, I work on different muscle groups.

I aim to take at least 3-4 weekday trips to the gym.  My Saturday workouts are different.

Part 1: Spin.  My spin coach is a beast.  Taking a spin class should not be taken lightly.

Part 2: Power Kickboxing/Bagwork.  The Boxing Club’s power kickboxing classes are a fun combination of aerobic exercise and striking technique.  I use this class as a means to fine-tune my striking combinations and distance judging abilities.

Part 3: Weights.  Again.

Diet?  I’ll cover that in the next entry.  For now, enjoy this video of Joe beating Shin Akuma in CVS2.

What was your gateway anime? (Part 1)

I’ve decided to get a theme going for this week.  We’re all going to talk about our “gateway” anime/manga series.  The title that got us into the whole anime/manga shindig.  We’ll spend a few paragraphs musing about it, discussing what made that anime so special to us.

Leave it to me to get things started.  Before anything else, check this clip out.

It was the mid 90’s.  A time when anime wasn’t as easily available as it is nowadays.  We had to get our anime fix via VHS tapes(yeah, I know, OLD SCHOOL).  My cousin Charlie would rent the anime titles from the Wherehouse and our local corner Anime Store…and record them onto his own VHS tapes.  We would then watch those bootlegged movies every saturday.  One of those titles was Fatal Fury: The Motion Picture.

Ahhh….Fatal Fury.  The awkward, yet charming girl in the fighting game clique.  Y’see, back in those days, SNK fighters weren’t as big as their counterparts from Capcom, Namco, and Midway (at least in the US).   They did make an awesome anime series from the videogame though.

I mean, check out the art.

Yeah, this shit was awesome.

Up until this anime, I was a casual fan.  I mean, I enjoyed watching, but it wasn’t until I saw this series that I seriously got hooked.  What really gripped me was the art.  Take a look at all the shading they used in all the characters.  The character art was done by  Masami Obari, and to this day he’s still one of my favorite illustrators.  To a kid in the throes of puberty, watching sexy girls fight while really buff cool looking dudes shot energy from their fists was the GREATEST THING EVER.  I mean, everybody wanted to do it.  The action wasn’t as over-the-top as Dragonball Z was, but it was every bit as intense.

And the dub…was surprisingly good.  This title stands out as one of the Ocean Group’s best dub works.  I tried watching Fatal Fury in Japanese…and I didn’t like it as much.

There is one more anime that sent me down the path of anime righteousness.  I’ll do that later, ‘cuz I really wanna give my other SSB writers a chance to talk.  I’ll just leave you guys with an anime music video that doesn’t suck.