Not that easy

First of all James, Naz, Karl, Jake, Yousef brilliant well done on your stripes and Rob fantastic stuff a well deserved purple belt, you are a machine mate, well done all.

Well I wrote a week or so ago about how I had conquered the fear which I knew was holding my game back and hey presto that was it all sorted all good onwards and upwards.

It would seem around 10 days later this is not the case and for some reason my crisis of confidence is worse than ever.  Yeah the poorly elbow and my lame foot have not helped but I just feel like every time I roll I am going to get beaten and I am not sure why.

It starts as we approach on knees, I am admittedly worried about going over my foot again but even for the time before that it seems that no matter the size and weight advantage I have I end up getting steamrolled and knocked to my back/side where I have to work back or often not manage too.

From that point on it just seems to go downhill and I will end up tapping to something I would have got out of a few months ago or just defending to a draw.  So it seems the resurgence that I hoped to have had has not actually come to fruition and I am not sure why.

One of my issues is that I do not feel like I have the attacks that many others seem to have or that I am too clumsy to pull them off.  Big Man Jitsu is great but when it does not work and I need to fall back on pure technique it seems that if Plan A does not work I end up reverting to back to the same Plan A.

Many of the chokes and certain movements just feel very laboured to carry out or that when I do try them my size counts against me and the movement is too slow with too many gaps.  Then I work on that and find that I bring the control and close the gaps but in doing so my own weight which is controlling my opponent counts against me and my ability to pull of what I want to do.  Couple that with the fact that it feels like everyone I roll with is getting better and better and my general malaise is intensified.

Now do not take this as a moan or a whimper or even a white flag as it is none of these things it is just a statement of where I feel I am.  I am well aware that I roll with an extremely talented team of individuals coached by a truly world class coach and that I will take some defeats, that however is not the issue.  I keep pushing myself as hard as ever maybe even harder and yesterday I struggled to get out of bed in the morning I ached so much sadly it just does not seem to be getting me anywhere.  The main problem is the fact that I feel I am not putting up as much of a fight or offering the threat that I used to be able too.  That I am not giving my best and not for the want of trying, if it was purely effort I could push myself through it but it isn’t.

Maybe I need to be more serious which is something I struggle with,  I enjoy rolling and I love the learning behind BJJ and the skill of the sport so I tend to approach things with fun at heart.  It is a relief from a stressful job full of long hours and I relax when I get there, maybe just too much  This could also be part of my downfall so I will make the effort to try and be more serious see if it focuses me better.

So what else am I going to do about it, well that is the thing I am not sure to be honest.  I have made a concerted decision as of today to really look at my diet and I am only going to have the odd drink at most once a week as both diet and booze have slowed my weight loss to zero.  I am sleeping very poorly after training and I need to work out what is causing this, apart from the usual aches and pains of course J.

As for rolling and the like I am not too sure, I think it may be a case of back to the drawing board to re learn some things and build up again talk to John and the more talented guys at class (most of them) who are always willing to help.  So I guess it is a case of watch this space…..


Filed under BJJ, injury, struggling

9 responses to “Not that easy

  1. Great read again, thankyou big man. Hope you are ok for training later

  2. Samurai Che

    Big man, at almost every (weekly) crisis of confidence I have you are there to guide and motivate me. You have been a huge influence on my game. The point is you can’t help someone as shite as me to 2 stripes without having a good game. To refer to my “bjj is like a long que” metaphor, look at those ahead of you to help you move on. I do…and you have. 🙂

  3. Jimjitsu

    Hey bud chin up …. what you are going through now is part of being a blue belt … we have all been there, lots of soul searching, game searching, plateaus … but you will break through it … as we all do … to probably be faced at another at some point or other … but the breakthroughs are worth it! If i had a quid for every time i’ve started to doubt myself i’d be able to afford johns protein shakes :o)

  4. I think there are periods in everyones jitsu life where there is a period of reflection and/or personal critism. These critiques and acknowledgment that things can be improved/worked upon allow us to move forward. The fact that your sir are the single most nimble 20st guy i have every met is a case in point. I have about as much chance of getting my foot behind my head as being a vegan (NONE!!!). Awareness of the fact that the guys that are catching surpassing you,me,naz and whoever else are lads at 20 -23 yrs old. WE aint spring chickens, we ache more, take longer to recover, find things harder to implement etc etc. Do you think the newbies that arrive at a school will be asking these lithe young things or will they turn to friendly if slightly older faces for advice, encouragment and guidance. Of course they will, we all have roles at the club and you sir are the BFG always there to put your wing over the new guy to make sure he is ok. This is a very important role and one that i, naz, ross etc have all benifitted from in recent weeks and months.

    I think this all stems from the injuries you have at the mo and the fact they are getting you down understandibly, i know im sorry sabout the albow and mad man attey no doubt for giving you a club ankle lol.

    Plus the kettle is always on!!!! – peace brother x

  5. Samurai Che

    Amen to that soul man 🙂

  6. David "Fiddy" T

    Dude, we all go through periods where you feel that nothing works and that you’re stuck and not able to progress. Ask anyone.
    I think that you’re going through a down time because of your injuries. I’ve had a few periods like that and it sucks for a number of reasons:

    #1 – for me a main thing is that I’d be worrying about not making my injury worst – or worrying about the effect of the injury on my out-of-the-mat life (specially wrists, fingers and neck for me)

    #2 – you don’t want to pull moves that might need that injured bit – and as you know BJJ is a bit like swimming in that it exercise most muscles – ending going back to reason no.1 (i have to stop or limit my sweeps because of my bad knee quite often)

    #3 – on those (injured/recovering from injury) times you’re not or can’t roll at 100% and because of the reason above you may feel like you can’t do as much, that the other person are doing so much better/faster than yourself or you might get beaten by people that otherwise you probably wouldn’t.

    All this just creates frustration and gives your self-esteem a good beating. But it’s normal and it happens to everyone – well maybe not to Roger Gracie but you get my drift.

    You’ve been evolving a lot, becoming more and more dangerous and getting the subs in. BMJ is a reality 🙂
    Just keep going strong.

  7. appreciate your comments guys and it has genuinely hit home, my next post will be about the nature of GB Sheffield and you guys in general

  8. Rich

    Just turned blue myself and going through the same. I am a bit older than my BJJ mates, and seems I don’t grasp it quite as quickly.

    A former corporate COO told me “play to your strengths”. Find that and leverage it, and you may see a different result. I’ve also tried to take more risks, my view being if you’re going to lose, then do it trying something you’ve never done. May find it works and it will become a great tool in your arsenal.

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