Update

  1.  I started and finished reading Zen in the Martial Arts today. I “emptied my cup” (a reference to the book, if that wasn’t obvious) and tried not to be judgmental and skeptical re: the wishy washy language, and ended up getting a decent amount of food for thought out of it. For example, he spoke about self-consciousness interfering with performance; being conscious of trying to beat someone or show off your skill impedes your ability in a way. “There must be the absence of feeling that you are doing it.”
  2. I’m enjoying UFC Fight pass. I have a goal of watching all of the past Invicta cards, but am making slow progress. I believe, with the extension from the streaming issues in Waterson v Tamada, I have until the 30th. I’m open to suggestions on what to watch.
  3. I’m having serious martial arts “emotions.” To me, martial arts is supposed to be an escape, so I’m deeply uncomfortable with that. Basically, it seems like one of my training partners is not going to continue, but she won’t say so clearly. So I’m left wondering why, and if I should try to get her to come back, etc. It hurts to have someone leave and have no real answers as to why. I know it shouldn’t be taken personally, but when you bond with someone through practice it definitely feels personal.
  4. My husband came to pick up the car keys from the gym while I was practicing. Without having said so, I was really excited for him to see the humble place where I practice for the first time. But later his only comment on it was, “where was everyone else?” Maybe he had a picture of it as being a bigger gym than it is, even though I’ve always made it clear we’re small. I don’t really know what I would have expected him to say, but it made me self-conscious, especially with one of my primary training partners disappearing into thin air. 
  5. I met my goal of running a 5k before summer’s end a few weeks ago. Through controlled breathing and forcing myself to keep my pace even, I was able to run the whole time and not get stopped by side cramps. I did it again today, shaving 2 minutes off of my previous time by doing it in 33 minutes. Today I focussed on keeping my core engaged while running as an additional way to fight the cramps, and it also seemed to help.
  6. I feel like my stand up is coming a long way. I’m not getting as overwhelmed by combinations coming at me, and I’m continuing to move, block and return. My kicks are finding their target and chaining together well. I still never feel as at peace as when I’m rolling, though. I love it for different reasons.

That’s all for now. I continue to lurk on Tumblr and love watching all of your training updates. Keep ‘em coming!

whitebeltbrazilianjiujitsu
whitebeltbrazilianjiujitsu:

#whitebeltbjj #jiujitsu #bjj #brazilianjiujitsu #grappling #jiujitsumotivation #bjjmotivation #martialarts #mma #bjjstyle #bjjlife #bjj4life #bjjlifestyle #bjjtruth #jits #bjjfighter #whitebeltproblems #jiujitsulife #jiujitsu4life #whitebelt4life #jiujitsuproblems #ilovebjj #ilovejiujitsu #bjjgirl #bjjmeme #bjjmemes #jiujitsumemes

Not super liking the equivalency being implied between “not training jiu jitsu” and “being a girl.” As if either of those things are insults. As if girls don’t train jiu jitsu. And yes, I understand that it is a meme and a joke.

whitebeltbrazilianjiujitsu:

#whitebeltbjj #jiujitsu #bjj #brazilianjiujitsu #grappling #jiujitsumotivation #bjjmotivation #martialarts #mma #bjjstyle #bjjlife #bjj4life #bjjlifestyle #bjjtruth #jits #bjjfighter #whitebeltproblems #jiujitsulife #jiujitsu4life #whitebelt4life #jiujitsuproblems #ilovebjj #ilovejiujitsu #bjjgirl #bjjmeme #bjjmemes #jiujitsumemes

Not super liking the equivalency being implied between “not training jiu jitsu” and “being a girl.” As if either of those things are insults. As if girls don’t train jiu jitsu. And yes, I understand that it is a meme and a joke.

Grateful

Wow. I just re-watched my matches and am overwhelmed with gratitude for my talented opponents. The reason I’m proud of my performance has much to do with the fact that everyone was so good. The opponent I had faced before and lost to, I lost to better. So much better. 

I also noticed some more things to work on and some more positives:

a) I’m not truly as active as I think I am in a bottom position. I’m good at staying safe but need to work harder and more immediately to improve my position.

b) I was so worried about getting out of closed guard after being stuck there for so much time in the last tournament that I neglected my defenses to open guards. I made all my rolling partners start with me in a tight closed guard for the past few months… :)

c) I didn’t even realize during the matches that my no-gi opponent had been going for ankle locks the whole time. Whoopsie-daisy. I thought she was reaping the leg for the sweep. Way to be present, me.

d) my inclination to stay on top usually serves me really well in a scramble.

e) I really do not give a shit about my hair in tournaments, rarely even fixing it between matches, which in combination with the bulky black mouthguard makes for sweet, sweet tournament photos. 

… …

For a little bit yesterday I suddenly got really down on my performance. The peaks and valleys post competition are normal, I suppose. The fact that I didn’t submit anyone and was submitted in my final match suddenly was the only way I could see the tournament. I’m glad I’m coming out of that feeling, because it just isn’t useful. Part of the reason I felt this way was because of social media - the girl I lost to is FB friends with me and my feed was getting barraged with an angle of our matches which made it seem much more one-sided. I started to become frustrated that it didn’t matter what really happened to anyone, and that the fact that I lost would be the only thing people would see. This is true in general of competition. Even the losers do great things, but celebrating the performance of a loser happens only very rarely. I did the right thing and unfollowed her posts so that I didn’t keep letting it color my perspective, because who has time for that. 

Today I’m back to feeling proud of what I’ve accomplished, eager to learn more and improve and in love with my art.

Got the takedown reversal which was nice, but she pulled guard as we went down, which I was seeking to avoid for reasons you’ll see here. I stayed composed in a tough situation and got out, but then temporarily forgot I had ankles at the wrong time. ;) Loss by straight ankle lock.

It makes me so happy that this picture is the thumbnail, because this might be my favorite part. In this match, I felt it was taking too long to get to the ground, so I went for a weak-ass flying arm bar in lieu of just jumping guard. After fighting from guard she stood up and I swept her. Then things got all wonky, but I survived again.

Round one of three with this opponent. At the last qualifier she got me in a triangle arm bar from her rubber guard, so I knew the goal was to avoid her guard, which I mostly did here. You can’t tell, but at the end I was fighting for an americana. 

Side note: I have some history with this person, not all so positive. She’s a great grappler, very leggy and flexible which is a challenge for anybody. Without getting into details, I definitely feel some anxiety in facing her. Which made it kind of hilarious that it was just us in the championships three times in a row.  

Good match. I’m not totally sure (on points) who would have taken this, but it was win-lose-draw anyway. I got a sweet inside leg trip that I didn’t expect to work, and realized too late that it did, so she bounced right back up. Almost had a triangle, switched to an arm bar and lost position, but scrambled to the top. Then I ended on a low note, but oh well. :)

Things to work on: get better angles to finish and attempt submissions (though I would like to note that she had my right arm trapped for the duration of the triangle attempt so I couldn’t hook the leg or grab the back of her head with both hands), going for half guard sweeps immediately upon regaining half guard from a bad spot.