As I have actually been here for quite some time now (I believe that is how the song goes)
So am back from my holidays in Tenerife and I honestly do feel like a new man, and no that is not a switch in lifestyle choices, I mean in myself.
First two weeks of doing almost nothing for ages and I feel fitter than I have in years, not so much physically, we will get to that, but mentally and just general well being.
Anyway holiday first and to be honest it was great but as this is a BJJ blog mainly I shall gloss over that and talk about the Tenerife BJJ School I found and my first day there. Gracie BJJ Tenerife is alive and well and based out of a Gym in the town of Los Cristianos and the main school at Adeje just outside Los Cristianos.
The Canary Islands have a strong tradition of combat sports and in fact the islands have their own brand of Canarian wrestling known as Lucha Canaria which is similar grappling wise to African wrestling especially the Senegalese style.
So it was no shock to find a BJJ school and I got in contact with Fabian who runs the gym in Los Cristianos, and is a BJJ Purple belt, where the Gracie school works from 24hr Fitness about coming to roll, he was more than happy for me to do this.
Thus I found myself down at the gym at 7am (on holiday remember, this is commitment) and met the man who now runs the schools on the Island, Mr Sandro Heil, who asked where I was from and when I said Sheffield almost immediately replied, “ah yes Lucio Lagarto I know him well come on in.”
Sandro then left me to roll with some of his pupils and at the start I did well, even got a couple of nice butterfly sweeps but then the heat hit me. Like all BJJ gyms I seem to roll in it was a very hot room to start with, coupled with the fact that Tenerife was having a bit of a heat wave this all became tough. My endurance dipped but I kept pushing and rolling for the hour but with diminishing returns.
Then as a lot of the lads were working at 8 and Sandro did not have to be at the main school till after 9 he came and worked with me one on one for an hour or so. This was great as he is a Brazilian Brown Belt 4 stripe with over 20 years rolling and had trained under Carlos Gracie Junior amongst a catalogue of other respected and top level guys, including Lagarto. He runs the schools now on Tenerife and works with Tenerife Grappling as well as the Vale Tudo team on the Island.
The session was fantastic and quite different to some of the teaching I have had in the past as it is very competition based all on points scored and how to maximise this. He had seen my sweep and thought it was OK but wanted me to finish in mount not side (where I am more comfortable and have more submissions) as mount is more points. There is also a greater emphasis on movement at quite a rate and less about settling into a position and then establishing. Of course the fundamentals are the same as is the ethos and also the ease at which he bested me at times, not unlike rolling with a certain Mr Goldson back in Sheffield. All in all it was a great session and I thoroughly enjoyed it was well as learning a good few things.
However this past fortnight has made me take a genuine look at myself and I realise that I have to address my fitness. Not for any other reason now than it is holding me back, I am feeling very positive and I think the real struggle I had with the heat and my fitness coupled with some family history of medical issues as finally kicked my butt into action.
So I start today 13/09/10 some 4 stone lighter then I started BJJ but far too heavy. Starting weight 22st 11lbs / 319lbs / 145kgs watch this space as it will come down and no mistake.
My doctor told me to stop having intimate dinners for four. Unless there are three other people. ~Orson Welles