Sunday, 7 September 2014

Did you miss me?

warning: a lot of feels and semi personal shit. If you just want to read about what my plan of attack is, skip to here.

Did you miss me? Just kidding, I know you didn't.   I missed me though.  It's been a long time since I wrote a post,  mostly because it's been a long time since I felt like writing about anything.  There have been some great tournaments, that I should have wrote about, like the Ontario Open and IBJJF Toronto Open, both of which were amazing.  The Ontario Open was huge, ran great, had great matches and solid refereeing.  The Toronto Open had more black belt matches in one tournament that I have ever seen in Ontario!  It ran really well, had great medals, had great competition and was a very typical IBJJF event(they even posted the spectator fee on the website ;)).

But I didn't,  because I've been to bummed, sad, angry, disappointed, pissed off, and generally just negatively feeling towards jiu jitsu because of how the ontario open went down, for me(not anything to do with the tournament itself, just me).   I've been on a pretty bad downward spiral since then,  I almost climbed out of it a few times, but never really did and when I failed to climb out, it went worse in a hurry.

So, what happened at the Ontario open?  Leading up to it, I was in a really weird place mentally, ussually I am super excitied about tournaments.  I can't wait to compete.  I look forward to them for weeks and sometimes months(though, usually I don't go months without competing).  I didn't feel anything for the tournament. I wasn't looking forward to it, I wasn't nervous, I just wasn't there.  Then, the week before,  my shoulder started feeling weird,  not bad,just weird.  But I competed anyway, because that's what I do.  It's what I expect myself to do, and it's what everyone else expects me to do.  Even the night before, packing my gi bag, I was just going through the motions and ussually it's a kind of focusing and ritual thing for me that gets me right into the competition mindset and everything.

My game plan was to coast through my weight class, and focus on the absolute, so I fought in heavy, instead of medium heavy, b/c there was less people.  I didn't give a rats ass about the weight class matches, I only cared about the absolute.  I didn't lay down and die or anything, but  had no killer instinct, didn't really do a lot of jiu jitsu and even then, my body just fell apart.  The first problem was my knee and the second was my shoulder. I could do anything with my right knee: I couldn't bridge, couldn't keep my dlr hook, couldn't use it to keep the distance on the other dlr side, couldn't reguard, it was useless.

My shoulder quickly jumped on the "Let's abandon Patricia"  bandwagon too.  My brain said "make a frame", "pull", "push", "drag", "do anything other then hurt for fucks sake" and all my shoulder would do is... nothing.  It was useless,  I'd have been better off with no arm, because then at least it wouldn't have been such a liability.

I lost 2 matches in my weight class, and then got smashed in the absolute again.  It was an awe inspiring train wreck.  It wasn't the losing that got to me though,  yea, losing sucks, but I lose all the time, it's part of the game.   It was the fact that my body completely and mercilessly let me down when I needed it the most.

Now, I just have to clarify something, b/c this may just sound like i'm making a whole bunch of excuses for getting the shit kicked out of me.  I know,  if i didn't know what my body did, this would just look like "whaaa whaaa Patricia lost and is making excuses".  I get it.  But a bunch of ppl have asked me about it, so I'm telling you what's up.  Would I have lost if my body hadn't shit the bed?  Who knows,  probably,  Before the Ontario Open Sissi and I were even on wins, with her having the more recent ones.  Alison and I, well, I think she's up to at least 12, maybe more wins against me with at least1/2 by sub and I have never beat her. Caitlin and I have only fought twice before, once in a very casual zombie house, and once at provincials where I squeaked out a close win.   So, in all honesty I likely would have lost and it wouldn't have affected me in nearly the same way.  Whatever, I don't think i'm really making any sense, but All I really want to make clear is, I am not trying to take away anything from the wins of those ladies, they are awesome, and are super good at jiu jitsu and  would have won even if my body had cooperated.   What got me so down wasn't the loss, it was that my body let me down.   Alright, enough rambling about that.

So, after all that, I took a week or two to let my stupid body rest, cos it was a mess, and I tried some physio and blah blah blah.  I started training again and it was all feeling ok, and then just as I was feeling like I could take it up a notch and think about competing, BAM  knee craps out again training.  and the cycle starts over, then BAM   shoulder almost dislocates itself while doing an arm drag and I'm out again.  rest, feel good, feel bad, repeat.   Every time something (either knee or shoulder, or, something my "good" knee) went wrong, I'd make a vow to myself to not let myself get to messed up about it and not let my diet slip, and every time, after a week or so I'd fail.  So every time I got back to the upswing, I'd be starting a bit further back weight wise.

Now, I'm fat.  Like, 5lbs off of being the fattest I've ever been.  It's terrible.  I could blame the week in Mexico at the all inclusive, or how much I like to have pie for lunch when I'm camping, but honestly, It's just that I am an emotional eater, and when I get depressed I eat.  Even when I'm in a good place mentally, and training is going well, I struggle with my relationship with food.   I know
all the tricks and have successfully undone this kind of damage before. But the older I get, the harder it is.  I know what works for me, and what doesn't and I know exactly what I have to do.  Doing it, again, is going to be a struggle, but with realistic goals, and plans, I will compete in medium heavy again, it won't be the next time I complete,  I don't have time for that. I know weightloss isn't something that the hare wins the race of.  I also know I'm getting old,  I'm realistic, If I wait until my weight is perfect, and my body is 100% and the stars are all aligned and everything is just right to compete, it will never happen again.  So, I'm going to do what I can, with what I've got.

The Plan

The IBJJF Masters Worlds(From here on in know as "Old Man Worlds") is in 8 weeks.   Ever since I started competing in Jiu Jitsu I have aimed to compete at the worlds.  I know the masters worlds isn't quite the same, don't get me wrong, When I win a medal there, I will be very specific about where that medal came from.  I'm not delusional, I know the difference between winning a purple belt masters medal and a black belt adult medal. That being said,  at last years pans, some of the masters womens divisions were actually LARGER then the adult (or at least the same size when I checked, whatever) and a lot of masters women have mom strength, which is a scary scary thing.  Anyway, this blog isn't about masters vs adults and all that drama.  It's about me, wanting to compete again.  The first time I was supposed to compete at the worlds I ended up a really bad shoulder injury 3 weeks before that I had every intention of competing with anyway, but then didn't b/c I couldn't put my gi a few days before.  Anyway, this past year was more of the same, but at least I didn't have the flights and hotel and everything booked already.  So, that's my goal.  To whip my fat, lazy, emotionally unstable self into all kinds of shape and compete at the old man worlds. Which I can do, because, I'm old.

I don't have a plan for the weight class, Chances are it will be super heavy. Yea, I'm that fat.  I might make heavy, if my body decides to be nice, but honestly,  it's NEVER EVER EVER played along, it is my greatest enemy. Weight is secondary,  getting back to the competition tatami is primary.

So, to get there, I'm taking a (shorter) page from my teamate stephen's book and going 50 days of doing something fitnessy.  That will bring me up to a couple days before the tournament, by which time I'll need a rest day or two to recover and travelling and whatever.  This starts tomorrow.  Things that I shall be doing:  Jiu Jitsu(aiming for 8+ hours a week), kettlebell circuits (aiming for 2x a week), and probably some kind of cardio, cos mine sucks right now. I know, I know, the best cardio for jiu jitsu is more jiu jitsu, but there isn't always jiu jitsu available when I have time to do this shit, so HIIT will have to supplement a bit.

I know 8 weeks is not a very long time to go from 0 to competition, but, it's what I've got, and, barring any unforseen bumps along the way, it will be enough.

It's not a complicated plan, it's barely a plan at all.  But it's something, and I've written it down, So It's going to happen.  If, for some reason(finances, work, whatever), I can't make it to California,  I shall continue with this plan until I return home to the competition mats where I belong.

Righto, that's enough feels for one day.  I feel like I was missing some emo stuff in the middle and begining, but whatever.  I promise to not write another blog post with so much of that kind of crap for a long time.

Upcoming Events!
I really did miss writing these bits, I donno if anyone even reads them, or if they help people out at all.  If you read these and they help you, let me know.

Saturday and Sunday Sept 13th and 14th:  Professor Rafa Mendes at Pura and Ouroboros.  4x  Black Belt world Champion Rafael Mendes returns to ontario for 2 seminars.  Saturday at pura is sold out, Sunday at Ouroboros has 3 spots left.  You can register online at the link right up there.

Saturday Sept 13th: The GTA Classic I love this tournament.  2 years ago I won my very first samuri sword here!   It's got a great atmosphere, is gi only, and has great prizes for the absolutes!  Also, it's a great way to kick off the tournament season.  Registration closes on Tuesday night, so get on it ASAP. (PS don't let the competitor list fool you, everyone is like you and waiting till the last minute, b/c they like to make the organizers sweat a little).

Saturday Oct 4th Grappling Industries Toronto:  IBJJF Rules and Round Robin. They've recently added more weight classes for masters and women, so it should be a solid event.  This has been on their schedule since early 2014.

Saturday Oct 4th  The Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu - Canada Pro JJ Championship  Aka the Montreal Pro trials.  They've re-named it, taken away more then 1/2 the women's trips, and moved from Feb to Oct, but it's still not a competition to be missed if you are serious about jiu jitsu.

Nov 1st and 2nd World Masters IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu Championship aka Old Man Worlds.  Ok, this isn't local, but it shall be the location of my glorious return "home" to competition. So it's being included.

Saturday Nov 1st: Grappling Industries Montreal  These events are solid and a great way to get lots of matches because of the round robin format.

Saturday Nov 22nd IBJJF Montreal.  Not to much info on this one yet, no registration page or anything, but it's always a solid event.

Saturday Nov 22nd  Grappling Industries Toronto:  I don't have much info on this yet either, but it's been on the schedule since like January.

There are a few others on my calendar that I haven't heard anything official for yet so once I do, I'll add them to the next post.


1 comment:

  1. Glad you're writing again! I'm new to the game and I keep hearing about the ups and downs of bjj,particularly at belt ceremonies. At least they're cyclic. I train when I feel like it and don't take it too seriously and hopefully this keeps me from a bjj depression. Also I think anyone that's rolled with the women you mentioned knows it'd be pretty hard for you to discredit their skills... :)

    Finally, are you increasing the intensity of your rolls too quickly for your body? I just had the same thing with my shoulder and it kept me up at night, then I got a cold and also did all the physio etc as seen on my credit card.