Me and Matt were ready for a session early so we decided to have a roll before warming up. Matt worked position well and ended up subbing me via a very well worked choke. Then 2nd fight he did well again and got me in side control, where an odd idea popped into my head. Americana..., I saw the arm and it was there so I gripped it and worked it on before he could defend. He wasnt expecting it as no sane person would really think to I guess but he it went on hard and he tapped. He was suprised and so was I, we explored it a little more and we realised that if he didnt resist it It would of just rolled him onto his back and me into side control. Andy also pointed out he could armbar me from on top, thats why we pay him the big bucks.
The other thing we noticed was that we were REALLY tired, we are among the smaller sized people in our club so we both use our cardio as a strength in order to survive against the bigguns. I mean we were really tired, we can normally have 4/5 fights in a row and feel ok. We realised it was down to not really warming up. I explored this topic with Andy and its made a big difference to my existing knowledge. I always thought warming up was just to prevent injury, I didnt realise you need to warm up passed your initial cardio barrier to get maximum oxygen/energy effeciency. Now the reason why this is an important find for me is because when I competed in Hereford and Brighton my warm ups were minimal and I was exhausted in both my fights. I put it down to adrenaline and nerves. But now I know it was due to inadequate warming up.
I noticed alot of people having the same problem. I think alot of people dont have the confidence in there cardio, they are to worried of using up to much energy pre fight. But they end up more tired!. Training has given us a good recovery rate, hence why we can have multiple fights and feel ok (once warmed up). Being relaxed obviously makes a difference to. I would be silly not to utilise this recovery rate and hinder myself by not warming up fully. And by fully I mean getting a good sweat going, not just stretching.
My competition outlook has also changed considerably, due to a post from http://martialfarts.fightlinker.com/ . Who retrieved this nugget from the fight works podcast
http://thefightworkspodcast.com/ . This is the martialfarts paraphrased version:
"You can think of your training as a way to improve your jiu jitsu for competitions. Or you can think of the competition as a way to improve your jiu jitsu. Compete to improve your jiu jitsu. Don’t train just to improve your performance at "competitions.
Its one of the obvious things but is actually quite meaningfull. Why do we compete!? people say to test their abilities but then they end up training for the sake of competition. Competition is a great test but we should use it more actively to improve our jiu jitsu. So Ive adopted this mindset and now see competition as a seminar with lots of rolling, Im going their to learn, meet people and have fun. I dont care when I tap in class, a comp shouldnt be any different. And I think being that relaxed will actually make my comp performance better. It has also caused me to worry alot less, Im really looking forward to it now with minimal butterflies. Already looking at the next comps as well. Ollie Geddes's competition ethic has inspired me to attend as much as I can. The podcast also mentions lots of great stuff about acting positive even if you are nervous because that positivity will effect your body in terms of stress. Ill leave it to you guys to listin to it though. Its episode 136 and they do a follow up on 138.
There are over 10 of us from my club competing in Kent, including Andy. We are gonna rock it hard. Gonna be a great day of fun. 3 of us including myself in the same division, so good chance of a medal from one of us. 3 of my top ranked fighters in our club are finally competiting as well, the pole axe of doom (Chris - strong and good allrounder) and spider noodle (James - his tall and spindly, and crafty) and Kieran (Judoyourassman) whose around 100kg's of decent BJJ and scary judo throws. I currently rate Matt as ahead of me at the moment due to his activity on top and control, so hopefully he will place If I dont make it. The other guy in our division is nervous but Im sure he will do really well if he relaxes and will learn alot from the experience even if he doesnt do well. One of the newer guys James (not spider noodle) is also choosing Kent as his first comp but Im sure he will do well, he might be less experienced but Ive hardly ever seen him get tired. One of the fittest guys in the gym, he knows a good deal. If he works his A game and relaxes Im sure he will suprise himself.
Ive been sparring some guys who Ive not had the oppertunity to before now, so lots of new suprises. 3 in particular have given me a good run for my money, being forced to tap a few times and a few very long stale mates. I think I should try spar more people Im not used to. One guy who had trained before but not for a long time was quite tough, he wasnt very relaxed and was gripping onto me like a vice but he knew how to defend. I worked 2 subs that I thought I had deep, both chokes from mount I was really putting alot of effort into. He wouldnt give in and escaped both. I didnt give him a chance to attack back but he was close to setting up a few americana's. In the end I caught him with my most common sub, armbar from guard. I had to crank that on much more than I like to as well. He tried rolling out and I had to really clamp my knee's together. I finally got the tap but had caused myself alot of discomfort in crushing my tender groin. Something I havnt felt in a while.
Been feeling good off my back, quite mobile and able to reverse bad position and pick up subs from scrambles. Passing guard is feeling good as well but I need to use more hip pressure inholding side control, am also being put into half guard way to much. Still having trouble finishing subs from mount, see alot more options from side control. While I was waiting for the train I counted over 20 different subs I could think of from side control. I think its because people under mount are much more wary of sub attempts, so I need to be more crafty and subtle in my setups.