When people say they are going to Phuket, you think of sea, sun, sand and cocktails! Not these 2, they decided to sign up for a 3-week Muay Thai Training Camp! I wasn’t allowed to participate so Wendy can tell you what they got up to!
After travelling around for 3 months (and most of last year) we became rather doughy, so we decided to try a Muay Thai Camp. We had dropped in on a session last year during our stay in Chiang Mai, but it was too far to keep going every day. I’ve done kickboxing/boxing on and off for many years, so this was right up my alley.
We decided on Sumalee Boxing Gym as it had what we were looking for. It offered Muay Thai classes, yoga, accommodation and an eating plan. It’s also located quite remotely in Phuket so the temptation to go drinking/eating/partying was a lot more difficult.
Our schedule involved a morning class (1.5 hours), a yoga or PT session (1 hour) and an afternoon session (2 hours), 6 days a week. Sunday was rest day! Obviously, you get out what you put in. You can go as often or as little as you like (with no judgement). I’m really proud that we both went to every session and even though some were tougher than others, it was worth it. Once you get past the first few days, it does get easier and become more of a routine. You just have to be prepared for the bruises/blisters/cuts/ DOMs and your body hating you for the whole time.
The yoga session was a good way to stretch out, but it was rather intense for us beginners (especially Mike). Again, you go at your own pace and there’s no judgement.
We both really enjoyed the PT sessions and you can choose whichever trainer you’d like. It’s a good way to focus on technique and to learn the basics with good form.
All the trainers were really nice and fun. They made the sessions much more enjoyable as it wasn’t being run by a drill sergeant. They like to joke around but are also serious when teaching you the moves. The best part of the experience was the trainers. Without their relaxed and positive attitudes, it would have been a lot harder to have done the 3 weeks and come out smiling.
We chose to have the meal plan as part of our package, which meant breakfast and dinner were included. The food was exceptional and there’s a good balance between Thai and Western food. It also meant it gave us a bit of a detox as all meals have been planned by a nutritionist and we weren’t just eating anything and everything.
The rooms were basic but clean. They were spacious enough for 2 people, had cable TV, hot showers and a little fridge. We also had a few evening guests on some occasions; Gary/Gertrude the Gecko who we didn’t mind, Colin the Cockroach who was the biggest cockroach ever and then Colin’s son Cody. Just have a can of bug spray ready! As long as you aren’t expecting the Ritz, you’ll be fine.
There’s also a pool on site, which you can use to relax, keep cool and to sunbathe.
We also can’t forget about the resident pet, Arnie! She likes a good scratch on her head, daily walks and a cold shower by the pool!
Even though it is located in a relatively secluded area, it doesn’t mean you can’t get anywhere. They have scooters to rent on site or you can always call a taxi. It’s worth going to the Old Town/night markets for the street food and to buy any souvenirs. There are also many beaches nearby if you want to top up your tan and just relax. For shoppers, the Central Festival Mall is only 15 minutes away. There’s also a cinema here too and a ton of eateries!
Overall Sumalee was a great experience. Mike managed to lose 3kg and I lost body fat (I hope) but put muscle on (this is what I’m telling myself anyway). We also met a lot of great people here as the camp has a real community/family vibe and as we have been travelling and staying in hotels, we don’t tend to meet many people. It doesn’t matter if you are a beginner to an experienced fighter, the camp offers something for everyone.
After our 3 weeks, we wanted a few days to unwind on the island so we hopped over to Patong. This is probably one of the busiest and liveliest parts of Phuket and isn’t really a place for people who want peace. It was also coincidental that the boxing stadium is also here, so we managed to catch a fight with some of the fighters from Sumalee.
Next stop we are off to Bangkok! See you there!