31 March 2011

The Pan Ams Adventure

So Thursday I flew to Cali for Pan Ams. Apparently Brazilian time starts when you leave on the airplane for a tournament. My flight was a little late landing, and then my rise was late picking me up. Granted that’s not such a big deal, I mean Brazil time is fun. Its much more relaxed.

After an awkward night I went to the tournament, where I found out I no longer had a place to stay for the remainder of my trip. It was a nice little piece of information to be told before I competed. I tried to not think about it but it kind of got to me. I need to work on not letting what other people say get to me. As soon as I stop focusing, it usually ends up badly. Granted telling me oh yea you don’t have a ride, or a place to stay… before competing isn’t helpful either.

199543_212646518750688_192240324124641_966479_5065606_nEnough of the complaining. I weighed in at 126 with my gi on, a good 3 lbs below where I needed to be. My first match in my division was a girl named Rikako. She is from Japan and she was a good match. She got a sweep on me, I recovered, but never got any points… Near the end of the match she went to throw a triangle and didn’t get it, but the way it ended up, my arm got caught weird, and she submitted with me with a solid armbar. You know it’s a good one when the ref sees you about an hour later, barely speaks English, and comes over to make sure you are alright. He said it bent funny. 

After that I had a few hours to wait for my Open division. I was excited because I got to meet Andre Galvao before competing.photo (7) He was extremely nice, and willingly took a picture with me. I told him about how I moved to from Indiana to Washington right before his seminar in Indiana. And a few weeks before I moved to Washington he had done a seminar out there that I had missed. I would really like to go to one of his seminars, and sooner or later will find a way to go… After meeting Andre, I ended up meeting quite a few of my Facebook friends, and I even got to see some of the people i used to work with through NAGA, that was a nice treat since NAGA doesn’t come to the PAC NW.

Absolute went a little better better for me. My first match was against a female actually from Gracie Barra Seattle. She was in the heavy weight division, but was on the low end of the weight class. It was the full 7 min. which was the first time I’ve had a match go the full length at purple belt. I won on points, was kind of annoyed to see they never gave me back mount and guard passing points, but that’s a decision by the ref. After the match she and I talked and upon finding out we were relatively close to each other, we’re hoping to get together and train occasionally since even though the difference in size is there, it would be great training for the both of us.

My second match was again against Rikako. It was almost the exact same match. She pulled guard and  I worked to break guard and pass. it just never happened. She caught another triangle, I escaped and she got the advantage point. That was the only point given the whole match. I look forward to competing with her again. I think that it was a close match and have it on video again.

photo (8) After competing I met two more people who I’m very happy to have met. Roberto ‘Cyborg’ Abreu, who is my friend Ruben’s coach, and surprisingly a man named Gilberto, who works for Jiu Jitsu Pro Gear. After talking to him about my gi, I mentioned I had posted a review of it. He named my blog and said he had been so excited to read it. I was so happy to hear that piece of new. For some reason it was a good bit of news at the end of the day.
Since I had lost my place to stay for the rest of my trip I ended up getting a ride to the airport and having my flight moved up a few days early. I was very upset to have to leave and not be able to watch the brown and black belts compete. Luckily one of my teammates Brent was able to give me a ride home from the airport. Overall it was a crazy tournament to say the least. It’s lit a fire under my butt. I’ve always been the big fish in a little pond, when I was in the Midwest. Now I have goals to hit and I want to keep progressing and competing at this higher level.

24 March 2011

Support and the trip to pan ams!

Well last night after getting my hair done for the tournament, I got quite an awesome surprise from my team.

Coach Robert told me even though I couldn't grapple I still needed to come in for my send off before the tournament. I did and was very nicely surprised by the team. They had all signed a card wishing me well and Robert had two chocolates, one for before I compete and the second for recovery after I'm done competing.

It was a really awesome sentiment and I'm really grateful. Now the plan is to come back with my shield, or on it either way I'm leaving it all out there.

So now I'm in Cali. It was an easy flight... I slept the whole way on an awesome plane. Seriously if you never have flown Virgin Airways, they are pretty awesome. Very nice clean airplanes, free wifi, etc. I've been relaxing and watching my weight going through my plans for tomorrow and just staying positive. It's going to be a good tournament I am excited to compete. Thank you to everyone who has shown me support. Thank you to the Bjj Lifestyle for paying for my entrance fee. An thank you to my friends helping me out this week.

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17 March 2011

Product Review: Jiu Jitsu Pro Gear Competition Gi

In preparation for Pan Ams I decided to get a new, light weight gi for the tournament. One of my friends had recently bought a Jiu Jitsu Pro Gear rip stop gi, and had absolutely loved it. You can find his review of it here. After looking at their website and reading about their competition gi I decided to buy one and try it out. The great thing about Jiu Jitsu Pro Gear is that when you order one thing from them they will occasionally send you photo (3)promotional codes for free shipping, free gifts, or discounted prices off of their gear. Believe me it is nice to get free shipping or whatever

I ordered mine on a Tuesday and got it on Saturday. That was with 7 day shipping, so getting it in less time was a big bonus.  The gi came in a rip stop drawstring bag, and with a free gi material wallet. Those were a few nice bonuses. Nice way to sweeten the deal JJPG! I’m like a photo (4) kid in a candy store when it comes to new gear. I immediately pull out the gi and am surprised by how light it is. Because I am about 5’3” and compete at 129 with my gi on I got the A1 gi. I could have gone with the A0 but, if it shrank too much it could have been a problem. I put on the A1 and it was a little long, but nothing a good warm wash won’t fix.

Note: the gi and the website warn that shrinking may happen, and tell you how to minimize shrinking that may happen with your gi.

The pants actually had a feature that was new to me, instead of photo (5)just two loops for the drawstring there were actually 4 to help keep it in place. The pants have a to patches, on that has the size and washing guidelines on the hip. It also has a Jiu Jitsu Pro Gear patch down the leg. After washing it the pants shrank about an inch to an inch and a half. In defense of the gi, I washed it warm and dried it warm to make it shrink. The knees are reinforced, as well as the seams on the cuffs of the pant legs.

The gi jacket is simple. there are two patches that say Jiu Jitsu Pro Gear on the shoulders, but other than that there is space for team patches. sponsors patches, etc. The jacket is made with one piece of cloth, and it has a shorter ‘skirt’ on the bottom of the gi. It is a single weave gi which makes it completely legal for IBJJF tournaments. Jiu Jitsu Pro Gear does say they have a photo (6)specific cut to their gi’s with “extra room in jacket's shoulders, underarms and back as well as extra room in pants for comfort and mobility” The space is there but it is not baggy. After washing it twice, it has shrunk to my preferred length.

I tried out the gi on Monday night class, it was a little stiff, but I hadn’t washed it yet, so it had the new gi feel to it. It was super light which was great because it was a hard practice and after rolling for over an hour straight, I has hot, but I didn’t feel like I was suffocating in the gi. It is extremely comfortable, and durable. A full week of training and it dries quickly, stands up to me being probably the smallest adult in class, and I don’t feel held back by it.  The price of the gi is pretty great as well, the White gi is priced at $119.95, the blue, navy, and black gis are $129.95. For the price and quality of the gi I am very happy. I think I will be buying mostly Jiu Jitsu Pro Gear from now on.

16 March 2011

A short practice

Today was rough. I was sore and exhausted from work and training. So when I went to practice I got a little break in the intense training. I had 3 matches at 10 min each. They were more of flowing grappling matches. Hard but not tournament level. After that I worked my takedowns at 30%. I started to wear down and Coach Robert had me stop, check my weight, and go home.

At home I again took an ice bath.. I still don't like them.. After the ice bath was visualization and meditation. Tomorrow it's kill Katie again since I can only do that a little longer.

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So sore!

So today was another round of kill Katie! I am currently writing from my ice bath... Gah ice bath, hopefully this works.. It was a difficult class and I am under instructions to do this but I'm freezing!!

Class started at 5 for me. 15 min of take downs at 30%. then it was kill Katie gauntlet! 3 people switched every 2.5 mini got a 2 min break after one rotation. Then went through the rotation again. After that I rolled about 10 min with Tristan.

15 March 2011

Bjj and crossfit

Yesterday morning I woke up to a nice surprise. My old coach Marcello from Indianapolis had messaged me on Facebook. He had been trying to call the wrong number and wanted to talk to me about everything. So I replied with the correct number and we had a good conversation about everything that had gone on in the past week. He supported my move to another gym, was glad to hear about my new team and coach, he stayed impartial in the whole situation, and he also said I should move back to train under him. I was glad to just talk to him and find out that what I had been told was untrue. I was also glad when he started to give me the tips he could for Pan Ams. The little bits of advice were welcome.

11 March 2011

A big change

So I've not posted in almost a week about training for pan ams. It has been an adjustment week for me. I officially left my gym at Fife Bjj, aka Gamebred, and have joined another team. It's been a difficult decision, but something I needed to do.

I of course will miss my old teammates. But sometimes when things aren't right, no matter how hard you try, it does not work. I will definitely miss teaching the Children's classes, they were the highlight of my days, and the reason I stalled so long on leaving. I am glad some of you have promised to keep in touch, and i wish all of you good luck this weekend at the Revolution.

04 March 2011

Back to training

After a few rough days of pushing it a little too much I finally had a good solid practice where I wasn't near dead when I was done rolling. The kids classes were fantastic. We played king of the hill with positions for the jr adult class. First to improve position stayed in the middle. It was awesome for working position before submission in a higher pace atmosphere. Advance class was going over techniques and then I had 3 good matches. Thank you to lily, Ty, and Michael, they were hard matches but I'm glad I kept moving. I didn't feel like I was dying after all of that and I even got a good mini ab workout done after!

Tomorrow will be cardio and lifting! I'm sad, no Bjj...

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03 March 2011

Product Review: EFX and Power Balance holographic band

So has anyone else seen these holographic bands popping up on all sorts of athletes? Late at night they have irenew bands on tv. Now the bands are starting to pop up everywhere. The first one I ever saw was when I was at no gi nationals in 2010. Marcelo Perdomo, Black belt and owner of BTT Long Beach had this little rubber and hologram bracelet on. Some MMA fighters have started to pop up wearing these bracelets including Vitor Beltfort, and Court McGee. The theory behind them is that there is a little hologram embedded in the bracelet, necklace, whatever you buy and this hologram somehow acts like a tuning fork for your body and re aligns the electronic waves in your body. It sounds interesting to say the least, right? I got a hold of two companies, EFX, and Power Balance to product review both wrist bands.

01 March 2011

A Set Back

OK this entry is all about the last two days.

Sunday I woke up early for a work meeting. Afterwards I went to the gym and did a lower body workout. It actually went very well, and I didn’t hurt, although I keep pushing myself I never get that truly sore feeling. After lifting I went straight back to work for a closing shift, but I didn’t make it all the way through the night. Somewhere in the 24 hours prior I had picked up food poisoning. So Sunday night until today I have been really sick and except to go to the store and buy Gatorade so I didn’t completely dehydrate. Monday was miserable, I should have gone to the hospital, I’m not even going to lie. I’m just too stubborn. So I curled up in my bed, and slept/ drank Gatorade until Tuesday morning. I feel better now but I’m still tired. I feel a little weak but I am really relieved that it only lasted Sunday and Monday.

On a positive not I did find a new favorite type of Gatorade… Raspberry Melon. It tastes pretty amazing… It was easy to drink and it didn’t make me sick!