Saturday, 29 December 2012

2012 / 2013

Just a warning, this post might be a little unorganized, disjointed, and generally not very well thought out. That's because my brain is STILL not working quite how it should be, and I have a lot on my mind when it comes to jiu jitsu and such.

So, 2012 was a pretty good year as a whole, I Joined Pura BJJ very late 2011 and really started training hard in Jan 2012. I have absolutely loved every minute of training with my the team and am so thankful that they have all welcomed me with open arms and have made me feel like a part of the team. It feels like I've been there a lot longer than only 1 year. That could be because in that one year we had five road trips to Montreal, a road trip to Ottawa, two trips to New York, and ten or so tournaments in the GTA that we competed at together. That's a lot of time in a car, gymnasium, and Pizza Hut to get to know each other, support each other and become good friends.

Over the year, I attended over 25 events, including competing at 17 tournaments, fighting in one super fight, attending the IBJJF ref course, attending Sub-X, training in California, and attending a couple tournaments I did not compete at. That's over half the weekends of the year spent doing something jiu jitsu related! Great times. Of course, because of that, I have seriously neglected my non-jiu jitsu friends and family and I feel pretty bad about that. In 2013 I am going to work harder to find a balance so I can pursue my jiu jitsu career and support my teammates while not neglecting my friends and family who have supported me so much over the years.

I had plans for 2013 to start with a pretty big bang. Ascension, Montreal Grappling, Toronto Grappling, and the Montreal Pro Trials, all in the first six or seven weeks of the year. I was also planning on re-starting working with my kettle bells, doing some serious cardio, and lifting heavy things with my mega strong power lifting teammate Ken all in December to be better prepared for the competitions in Jan/Feb. Instead I've sat on my ass, played XCOM, watched a couple classes and tried really hard not to get depressed and fat.

I credit eating mostly paleo to helping me with that last bit. Normally, when I'm injured, I eat garbage, feel like crap, so I eat more garbage, then get depressed because I get fat, so I eat garbage. It's a pretty vicious cycle that I've been working on not getting into. Jon's been pretty helpful with that because there have been a few times where it's like Jon: "What do you want for supper". Me: "Pizza and Ice cream". Jon: "No, what do you actually want for supper". So that's good at least.

Oh, that reminds me, one of my other goals for the new year was to fight in the -132 or whatever division at the Abu Dhabi Pro Trials in Montreal. I know that is mega light, but it's day before weigh ins, and with clean eating, and lots of cardio and lifting and whatnot I could have done it, IF I had been able to get an early start in Dec and kept to it. Not any more. Now competing there at all is a grey area. This whole paleo thing has been going pretty good. I haven't really lost any weight in December, but, all things considering, the fact that I haven't gained 20 lbs is a win for me. I've maybe gained 2 or 3, depending on the day, and how thirsty I am when I weigh myself.

I've been sleeping a whole lot better, and feeling generally more energized, except when I over do it, and the stupid concussion symptoms come back. It's really hard to say exactly how things are from my diet when I am dealing with this head stuff. The other good thing is I haven't caught any of the crazy flu/colds that have been going around and I am usually the first person to catch them, and then the last as well. I'll catch the same flu twice haha. I read the other day on Facebook that last year at this time there was 10 lab confirmed cases of the flu in Ontario, and this year there is over 1000. I think this is partially because the flu season peaked a bit early, but it's still insanely way higher than it normal. So it doesn't just seem like there is a lot more sickness around this year, there IS a lot more.

The other, probably most noticeable side effect of eating this way has been my ability to sleep well. I used to sleep terribly. I had to take melatonin to get to sleep pretty much every night and I would wake up a bunch of times throughout the night. Not anymore. I fall asleep much easier, and wake up a LOT less. Even Jon noticed that HE is sleeping better, because I'm not waking up and tossing and turning and waking him up with it.

The one good thing about not being able to train, and being on vacation from work, is my disaster area of a house is getting a good cleaning... the main floor anyway. It's been in a state that is to embarrassing to have people over for over a year. I just haven't had time to clean, and was a a point that it was overwhelming to start somewhere. I was planning on cleaning over Christmas either way, but not being able to train/exercise gives me even more time to do it. I still have to take it easy, and not do to much though, or i get a headache and nausea all over again.

I started with my living room, rearranged the furniture completely, so I could move some dining room furniture to make room for more storage space. That is one of the big reasons my house was always a mess, there just wasn't anywhere to put a lot of stuff. Also, I have too many small appliances: microwave, dishwasher, 2 single serve blenders, coffee maker, Keurig coffee maker, food processor, hand mixer, and a George Foreman grill. and if they all sat on my counters I would have one square foot of empty space. Now, things like a hand mixer, and one of the blenders could easily go in cupboards or cabinets, but they are all full of dishes because there is so few of them.

Ikea solves everything. We picked up 3 24" cabinets to put in the dining room for more storage AND counter space. WIN WIN! also, they look nice. We don't have a top for them yet though, Jon is hopefully going to get one tomorrow when he borrows my parents truck. we couldn't quite fit a 72" counter top in my accent. The cabinets pretty much fit entirely in the trunk though, which i was impressed with. Except for the bag of hardware, which would have fit, but i felt it was probably best to go in the backseat. I didn't even have to put the seats down!

Did you know that if you buy certain things at Ikea, like cabinets, you have to get an order printed, pay at the checkout, and then drive to the furniture warehouse around the block to get the stuff? They don't have everything in the self serve area! It's a bit of a pain, but also kind of nice, because they find all the boxes for you, which is good, because each cabinet had 7 different boxes/packages, not including the handles, which were found and bought in the store. Complicated. I know.

Tomorrow I'm going to fill my new cabinets will all the stuff for baking/cooking... Big utensils, pots, pans, glass things for baking, measuring cups, bowls, spoons, that kind of stuff. Well, I might leave the pots and frying pans in the kitchen area, we shall see how it all fits and works out. I also have to unpack all my new containers, and put them away on the new lazy susan in the other corner cupboard. It was to a point that we were just tossing in the containers in the cupboard, with the lids sometimes, but not usually, it was impossible to find anything. I threw out an entire recycling bag full of containers with no lids and lids with no containers. Most were those disposable Glad and Ziploc ones, but not all. We are switching to mostly glass ones, I don't like plastic containers, especially for using in the microwave. Jon's always like "it says microwave safe" so it'll be fine. But when you see the plastic all kind of melty and weird looking on the inside, especially when there is tomato in it, you have to think twice about using that for food right? So I don't microwave in plastic anymore, even if it says microwave safe, glass only. So for lunches, it's a lot easier to have glass containers than plastic ones.

I've noticed, the last week especially, that I've been having trouble thinking of words and when I'm writing things down, I'll skip like 5 letters in a word. I've always done that, but it seems like I've been doing it a lot more lately. Or maybe I'm just noticing because i'm trying to be aware of my head and other concussion related symptoms. Thinking a lot still gives me headaches to, I thought I would be past that by now, but maybe because I didn't take any time off work when it happened I think I've delayed my recover a bit, which sucks, but you gotta pay the bills right?

So, 2013... I'll be reffing at ascension probably, not fighting for sure and maybe heading to Montreal for Montreal Grappling- not fighting there either, but supporting Jon and my other team mates, and maybe reffing there too. I don't see myself fighting till probably March at this point, fingers crossed.

Gui Mendes is coming to Pura for a week in January. starting Jan 12th till Ascension. I'm really hoping my head holds up for the technique portions of the classes at least. I will be so disappointed if I can't train with Gui! On Jan 12th there is a 3 hour seminar, 100 bucks before Jan 1st, 125 after that. Then Mon-Fri, there are 1.5 h classes for $70 for non-Pura members. It's going to be an amazing week of training and if you can get to any of it, you should. Gui is an amazing instructor, and not to mention a 3x world champion at black belt.

I just made a batch of cocoa roasted almonds, and they are delish! Just take a cup of raw almonds, coat them in a tbsp or two of maple syrup, then toss them in a tbsp or two of cocoa. Put them in the oven at 275 for 20 min, stirring them up every 5 minutes. Then let them cool down, and eat them.

I totally forgot to mention, in my blog post about Grappler's Quest, that I went from having zero sponsors to TWO in one day. I earned a sponsorship from Pecker'd Promotions by wining the no-gi women's advanced absolute.

The other sponsorship that came to fruition at Grappler's Quest was Redstar BJJ. Now, if you've seen my posting and stuff on Facebook and my blog, you probably thought I was already sponsored by them because I go on about them a lot, but that is because I LOVE their gis and Egor is a cool guy and is working hard to progress the sport and support local athletes and tournaments and stuff. Well, now it's offical and I couldn't be happier to be part of the team. Speaking of Redstar, they are having an INSANE sale right now in their website. $100 for a stamp gi is ridiculous, it's outrageous, it's amazing. They are pre-orders so you won't get your gi till Feb or so, but that's still pretty quick turn around for a pre-order. 

I rearranged my blog layout, and added these two logos/links to the side bar, so check them out and support them, because they support me. I also made a new cover photo for my fan page to add Redstar BJJ's logo to it as well.

I think that is enough rambling for now. I'll see you on the mats, from the sidelines.

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