Chop Wood, Carry Water

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Off Season

This time of the year is considered our BJJ off season here at the gym.  From the end of October until the first of the year there are no big Gi tourneys for the team.  There are a few Nagas and Copa Americas here and there but no IBJJF events for us.  I am not complaining.  Because of the holidays, AKA time o' indulgence, AKA family time, I am not upset that there is not a huge tournament that I have to be in peak physical BJJ condition for.  Speaking of physical conditioning, I am taking this time of year to improve my strength and conditioning.  Instead of S & C 2-3 times a week and BJJ 5 days a week like I did during tourney season I have flipped it.  Right now I am doing 3-4 days a week BJJ and 4-5 days of S & C.  I felt strong during the past year however I felt like my cardio could use a boost.  I am still lifting a few days a week and doing cardio and interval training at least 3 days a week.  Today I accomplished an updated interval workout that has pushed me beyond any prior workout of the same nature (double word score!).  Although I was exhausted I feel like I have taken a big step forward with my cardio.  My goal is to progress even further with my cardio and then be able to maintain the same workout or progress into the tournament season.  I have also started heavy squatting again.  Because of my guard game and the strain on the legs I have been advised not to squat during tournament season so as to avoid injury (did I say advised?  I mean I was forbidden, lol).  I have been squatting consistently for about a month again and I feel like I have picked up right where I left off and probably a little beyond that in terms of weight lifted.  I also have backed down the BJJ sessions so I don't become burned out and get discouraged.  There is not a worse feeling for me than feeling burned out.  Its like a hopeless, frustrated tornado that spins out of control for me sometimes. Instead I have a calorie-burning, fat-blasting, heart-racing, squat-wrecking tornado and its a dandy (F5 most likely).  My goal is to be a beast come next tournament season. I do not just want to be conditioned.  I want to have the tightest female triangle in North America come next March.  I also want to be able to go for days.  Oh, that round was only 10 minutes?  It went by fast. That's what I want to say come March.  Here's to training:  May the intervals seem short and the rest periods seem long.  Cheers!!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


Over the years I have grappled with soooo many different styles of eating.  Ever since I became crazy workout lady I have tried to stay as healthy as possible, however I will admit I have fallen for a few of the diet fads over the past few years.  When I was a freshman in college in 2000 (sigh) the Atkins diet had just become popular.  There hadn't been much research done into the health disadvantages of this diet, so of course it was all the rage.  My Mother had been introduced to the Mayo Clinic Diet.  In essence this was the Atkins diet.  No carbs; just veggies, meat and any fried combination of the two you wanted.  During my freshman year of school I was not working out.  I had spend my entire life playing sports and being active so when I went to college I just assumed I was naturally going to stay thin.  WRONG.  I gained the freshman weight.  One day I looked in the mirror and said "what the hell is wrong with me?!  You are horrendous!!"  It really hit home when I was on Christmas Vacation and my brother looked across the room at me and said, "dude you're gaining weight."  I was mortified and so upset.  My mom told me to try this Mayo clinic diet.  I still wasn't working out and I decided to try this diet anyway.  In 2 weeks I had lost 10 pounds and I felt terrible.  I was able to eat as much as I wanted and was losing weight but I felt like a chicken finger.  I seriously felt like one big chicken finger dipped in full fat ranch.  My body didn't feel right.  I went to try and run one afternoon in Statesboro and had NO energy whatsoever.  Diet fail.  I took a vow to workout every day and get on a clean diet.  Throughout the next 2 years I dropped my weight dropped drastically.  I was doing cardio 5x a week, with no strength training.  I did not have a drop of alcohol for a year and a half.  I attributed my weight loss to the cardio and the fact that I did not drink alcohol like all of my friends did.  I did not realize that the reason I dropped so much weight was because I was not eating enough food.  Yes the cardio burned the calories but I was lucky if I consumed 1500 calories a day.  Sometimes I would eat breakfast, get busy and then not eat until supper time when I would eat a pint of ice cream instead of eating real food. I weighed 125 pounds, and at my skinniest in 2002 I weighed 120 pounds.  I was 5'9 inches, 120 pounds of skinny fat. Yuck.  Diet Fail No.2.  After that stint I started a cardio and weight training regimen and took up middle distance running.  I gained about 10-15 lbs of muscle and was able to eat pretty much whatever I wanted.  As far as performance goes, I still didn't feel right.  I would get crampy when I would run, my muscular endurance wasn't where I wanted it to be, and I would sometimes have champion cardio and then the next day I would gas after 10 minutes.  This did not bother me that much because I was working out to stay in shape.  I did not have a sport that I was still trying to be competitive with that I would need to be in peak physical conditioning for. Then in 2008 I started submission grappling, muay thai, and boxing at a gym in Savannah.  I took a liking to it but did not know if I was going to be competitive with it.  I made the move to Atlanta and started training with Team Traven.  Boy did things need to change.  I fell in love with Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and decided to compete as often as possible.  I was in between weight classes so I decided smaller was better. I decided to do a low calorie diet instead of doing the ever popular paleo and no-carb diets.  I was still eating breads and rice, but I was counting calories like a beast.  I would take in 1200 calories.  Sure I lost the weight, but I was a miserable cranky mess.  I decided (well Traven and Jeff decided for me) that maybe light weight was not for me.  I would try out middle weight and just eat what I wanted.  Middle weight has panned out to be the right weight class for me, so over the past 3 months I have been trying to tune my diet to where it needs to be for peak performance.  I have a friend in Savannah who has been specializing in nutritional plans and diets for athletes for over 40 years.  I took Jeff down to Savannah with me and we decided to take his advice and try his nutrition plan.  In essence the plan is 5 meals a day consisting of carbs, protein and veggies. Not to mention you have to drink a gallon and a half of water a day.   There is veeeery low fat in the diet.  The goal of the diet is to lose fat, maintain or build lean mass, and to give your body enough fuel it needs to endure however long you are training each day.  The diet is specific to my body and workouts and I feel great.  I hit a small speed bump because I got lazy with the veggies, but I am back on track now.  I did not realize my success until I went to my Bioenergetics lab session today and was given  a submaximal exercise test.  I did this in 2007 at Armstrong and has terrible results.  Today I did the same test and my numbers were 100x better.  My professor informed me that hydration and diet has a lot to do with these values, it's not just how "in shape" you are.   I was using a lot of carbohydrates during the test because I had so many of them to use.   :)   My results excited me and I feel like I am in a really good place with my eating.  I take Sundays off of the eating plan to eat brunch and yes, eat some pizza or something delicious that I can share with Jeffie.  :)  I do feel like I have finally figured out how to eat and train at the high intensity that I would like.  My next venture is to write a blog on the dangers of low carb dieting and intense exercise;  not just speaking from experience and feeling stupid about falling for the gimmick but also discussing some facts I have learned in my Bioenergetics class.  Carbohydrates are our friends!!   Yay!

Saturday, September 10, 2011


              Today was stellar.  It really was. Nothing makes you feel better than having great  BJJ training sessions. Everyone has heard of runners high?  Well Jiu Jitsu high is runner's high times 10.  The feeling is wonderful.  I am not quite sure why the after BJJ bubble is so much bigger than it is after I have a great run or a great workout.  It must be because it exhausts me more than any other workout I have done in my life and that makes me feel great.
             This morning there was ladies class as usual, and there were a bunch of faces missing on the mats but the training session was great.  One of the blue belt ladies from the Marietta affiliate came and trained and as we all know it is wonderful to be able to train with your usual teammates as well as new faces.  There were only three of us azul ladies and about 6 white belts so it was still a full ladies class.  We worked some open guard sweeps with the leg lasso and then finished the session with some intense rolls.  Our fellow comrade Anna stopped by to say hello.  She hurt he knee about a month ago and has been laid up healing.  ;(  Can't wait to have her back on the mats!
             I stayed for the second class for all level belts as well.  The class was strictly warm up and and straight to rolling today.  There was a round robin scenario on both side of the mats. One side for the big boys and one side for everyone else.  You tap, you move out.  Today was great not only because I was absolutely worn out and fingertips raw when I finished but I learned so much while rolling today.  I learned a toe hold defense (which you always have to learn the hard way after you get put in one) and a knee bar defense (yep, have to learn the same way, haha).  I don't get put in these situation often because the higher ranked brown and black belts are really the only ones who do this in training.  Today there was a black belt on our side of the mat who helped me with this and he also taught me a wicked way to finish head and arm choke from side mount (thanks Paul).  I figure it is never too early to learn these defenses so hopefully in the future I will become much more aware of my feet when I roll.
              I love the feeling the Jiu Jitsu gives me after a training session.  I'm sure I am quite annoying to Jeff, Traven, and everyone at the front desk because I 'm just a talkin' after I get done training.  My little workout high bubble is at full capacity and I will talk to you about your plans for the day, your relationship, your dog's intestinal problems, which conference has the best football, your upcoming move, Lord of the Rings, my family, Rooster Cogburn, noodling, sushi, and the fact that we are all having the best day ever.  FYI some of those convos have never happened.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Too many chiefs and not enough......

Too many chiefs and not enough Indians (sorry for being politically incorrect, its just a saying).  Soooo, whilst training have you ever heard "that won't work on me," or "I almost had you."   SERIOUSLY.   I have heard this not only directed at myself but I have heard other students in class say that to each other.  White belts no less!   I have noticed that this is a beginner trend usually; like when white belts who have been training for a few months roll with a brand new white belt.  They say something like "that armbar won't work on me." Okay, that brand new student (may I remind everyone we were ALL beginner white belts once) is attempting a technique that he/she has just learned.  There is most likely no transition into it, it may be very "robotic," by the book, or it may be incorrect.  He or she just learned the technique.  If you see something wrong, grab the instructor and get it fixed.  If you feel like the person can't break your posture and they aren't going to get the armbar, then ok, keep your mouth shut and keep working.  It is so disrespectful and discouraging to hear something like this, especially to brand new students.  At Traven's place I have never heard any of the higher ranks say this.  Everyone is super respectful and mindful of their training partners.  If for instance I try an armbar on a higher rank and he knows it is not going to break his posture or be able to sink in, I will either pay for my mistake and learn that way or I get helpful advice like "hey instead of this, try this instead," or "this is a good way this works for me."   White belts and most blue belts for that matter do not have the credentials or knowledge base to give out this kind of info."  So instead of being disrespectful grab an instructor or just keep your mouth shut and do some Jiu Jitsu. I heard the "I almost had you" the other day.  I was rolling with a relatively new white belt and had double unders and was attempting to pass.  He locked his legs together and though if he squeezed his legs I would tap.  It was tight on my head, but I ripped out and passed.  Then he said "I almost had you."   NICE.

Friday, August 26, 2011

The value of training partners

Yesterday was glorious.  I was able to fit in great bjj sessions.  I always look forward to the different array of people who train in the day and then at night.  During the day class there were 2 of us ladies, 3 black belts, a couple brown belts, and the rest were purple belts.  I started off with the other lady in the class for the first roll. One of the black belts is coming off of a knee injury and is just able to get back to light training.  Traven had me train with him 4 different rolls yesterday.  I have always liked training with him for a few different reasons.  Firstly, the great advantage about training with blackbelts (I'm using the term collectively, I am referring to the ones that I have trained with) is that even though my 100% matches their 20%, I know that I am safe.  I never have to worry about them muscling me around and throwing me on my face.  I also get to try techniques that I am too timid to try otherwise without them trying to kill me.  Also, especially in yesterday's case, all of my mistakes get exploited.  If I turn the wrong way or stick an arm in when I shouldn't or grab the wrong lapel I not only pay for it but I get an explanation of what I did wrong and pointers on how to make it better.  The other lesson I gained from yesterday's session was that I need to learn to be on my toes more.  Literally and figuratively.  I was in positions that I have typically felt "safe" in.  Like certain halfguard situations and when in inverted guard when I am on top.  Suddenly, I am on  my back.  haha.  I only pray that someday I will have even half of the Jiu Jitsu that Chakalaka does.  I also noticed that the kid NEVER stops moving.  The variety of the bjj styles at the gym is extraordinary.  There is slow-smothering guy who makes you want to die.  There is crazy backflip inverted guard man.  There is leg-lock fantasy guy.  There is brute strength "I will treat you like a small child" dude.  There is "every roll is a competition" guy (yeah every gym has one).  Regardless there is something to learn from all of your training partners!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Please is there any hope left?

Alright people here it is, my first blog that has nothing to do with BJJ.  I have absolutely had it today.   Can someone please answer me:  are there any men left on this planet that have any decency when it comes to hitting on women?  I have heard it all as of today.  I have heard some really ridiculous pick up lines aimed at myself as well as lines aimed at strangers that are absolutely insane.  Today I received two.  The first one was from a vagrant:  "Hey Hey Hey let's pump some iron!"   That was actually pretty funny and I laughed.  The second was "hey you just get done workin out?!  Lemme walk you to your car and you can tell me about it."  No thanks, not now, not ever.  Lately since Crossfit has become all the rage I have gotten the "Hey you must do crossfit."  I take that as a complement but I never knew that Crossfit had a body type.  Apparently it makes you have small boobies and no badonkadonk.  There it is, the Crossfit body.   haha.   Now none of these insult me, these are just pretty funny if you think about it.  Today however, I heard one that took the insulting cream filled cake.  I was walking into Publix minding my own business when I notice a lady being approched by a vagabond.  He said "hey lady you gots sum munny?"  The lady politely replied "no, I'm sorry."   Then homeless McGavin says to the same lady "hey you know I like heavy women like you, right?"   I answered for her.  I don't know why, I don't know why this came out of my mouth, I don't know why I went from minding my own business to chiming in on this exchange but I said "Did you reeeallly just say that?!"  Lady looked at me, homeless dude looked at me, I stared at homeless dude and just said "really?"  Then I walked inside.  I do not know what came over me, maybe it's the lack of decency and respect that some men have nowadays. The entire situation made me think.  What happened to the good ol' boys?  The boys who offered to buy you a drink or the boys who try to make small talk over the section of People magazine you're reading (knowing full and well they could really care less about what is in People Magazine).  Or, smh, when guys used to ask their friends to hook them up with "that girl"  Now its butt-grabby, handsy, foul-remarked dudes who just want to skip the formalities.  Hey I have a word of advice....ladies like the formalities.   I remember the first thing Jeff ever said to me, I asked for some scissors and he said yes that the front desk had scissors but none for me.   haha.  It was funny and cute, and it opened up some friendly banter (I in turn made fun of his pants), flirting, and the rest is history.   I'm not writing this for me.  I am just wondering if there is any hope for the ladies out there as far as the courtship process is concerned.  I am thinking no.  Please if I am wrong let me know, and also I would love to hear some other amazing pick up lines.  FYI Atlanta is the haven of terrible pick up lines, I'm convinced.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Shaun White Hoodies and Deeenim!

        I titled this blog that because I have had that amazing Target commercial song in my head all day.   Mainly due to the fact that I started back to class this week.  Yeay!  My Monday class is epidemiology, which I had a little experience with in environmental health class.  The good news is that I do not have any big projects or presentations, just a couple homework assignments and 2 exams.   The bad news is that our class is in a room that is the width of a hallway and it is super hot in there.
      Today I also started back training full time.  I did a killer weight and cardio circuit this am in which I almost could not make it 5 rounds.  I really had to push myself to complete the workout.  It was MISERABLE.   Then school and then back to the gym for BJJ tonight.   It was wicked hot in the bjj cave this evening, so even an easy workout felt brutal.   For technique we worked hip escapes from mount then we worked where the person on top transitioned to a collar choke and then to the armbar when the person on bottom tries to hip escape.  During the training portion of the class I was on a mission.  TOP GAME.  Believe it or not I only went on my back once tonight, and had a good session playing on top and trying to pass.  Against one classmate whom I had never started on top against, I learned the hard way (again) about where my true weaknesses lie.   We all have to start somewhere!!  Overall it was a good session and I am confident about it.  I did not stay for the second class this evening because I am starting to listen to my body more lately.  I was tired, sore, and did not want to push too hard and force an injury.  Instead I stretched and watched the advanced class.  Tonight Traven was training and that is always great to watch.  He stays soooo heavy and tight when he is on top.  I only hope that one day my bjj will be 1/10th of what his is.   He truly is a genius in this sport!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Back to the Grind

        My deepest apologies for not blogging in the past week or so.   After the Vegas trip I needed a few days to relax and recoup (and eat some bacon).  Tomorrow I start back to training for the Nogi Pan Ams.  I am thoroughly excited about this tournament as I have not competed in a nogi tournament before.  I am nervous, anxious, and overall excited.  I felt comfortable at the Lutador tournament during the nogi portion;  I was able to submit my first opponent in my weight division and then in the open I was able to go to referees decision against a heavier, higher ranked, and more experienced opponent.  I am eager for tomorrow!   Also tomorrow I start classes in grad school (blah).   A necessary evil!  I only have this semester of classes and then an internship in the spring.   The good news is that while achieving higher education I get to train at will for the most part.  ;)  
        A lot of peoples' BJJ blogs have a lot to do with pet peeves.  There is nothing wrong with that.  This blog is not dedicated to my pet peeves, but rather to my life/training and the melding of the two.  However once in a while there are some things that just plain rub you the wrong way.  I will list a few.  (for a great bitchy blog check out  White belts teaching other white belts.  As a matter of fact, unless you are asked or until you achieve the rank of purple belt I don't think it is EVER your place to try and tell other bjj practicioners what to do.   I keep my mouth shut, and always call Traven or another higher ranking person over to coach.  Coaching is not my place yet, and I find it disrespectful when blue and white belts try and act like experts in the game.  Just because you have a high GPA or have 6 degrees or are a world famous sommolier, DO NOT act like you know everything about spider guard, wrestling, and leg locks.  The end.
        Talking during the entire class.   Oh my gooooosh.   Unfortunately females hold the crown for jawjacking while doing technique.  Girls are somehow able to do advanced sweeps/submissions while talking about the dumbest stuff.   Yep.   Whats worse is the person who talking in the middle of a roll.   Like "so how is training going?"  Or "oh I didn't see that pass coming, how did you do that?"   Yes, right in the middle of a roll.  One time I received this from a a fellow in class "do you feel like you overtrain sometimes?"  Dude.   Can we talk about my training schedule after class please?
           Enough of the pet peeves for the time being.  Ready to get back to the gym tomorrow!   I feel as if I have been going through laundry withdrawal.  I am so used to washing gi's everyday that not washing them for a week due to the time off seems very weird!   Cheers!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Drill to Win

On Monday I was able to train all three classes.   In the mid morning class, there was a lull in the attendance due to the tournament on Saturday.  Traven made it open mat, and there were about 10 ppl who showed up to roll.   Because I wanted to save some gusto for the evening training I rolled 5-10 minute rounds and called it a morning.   In this 6:30 evening class there was a solid group of people to train with.  After technique we had  pairs on the mat and the remaining people on the wall; if you tap you go out and another person comes in.  We did this for about 30 minutes.  The 7:30 class was drill time.  We warmed up and then Traven split us up into two groups.   This was the schematic for the evening:  1 person on bottom closed guard drill for 6 minutes.  During that 6 minutes every 2 minutes the person on top would change.  This took about 25 minutes and then we changed the roles, i.e. there would not be a person on top for 6 minutes and every 2 minutes the person on bottom would change.  This was not a cardio taxing exercise, rather it forced me to work on top, which is exactly what I have been trying to work on.  Drilling has so many obvious advantages.  The most important is that it forces you to work on positions/scenarios that may otherwise fall by the wayside during training.  I will use myself as a classic example:  every class I want to go in and work on top as much as possible.  Depending on who I am paired up with this either will (25% of the time) or it will not (the other 75%).  In some situations it is unavoidable as some big dudes will illegally grap your pants leg and throw you up in the air and onto your back.  The majority of the time I find myself on my back working guard, either put there or for some reason I put myself there.  I leave the class saying "why did I do that?!"  Needless to say I enjoyed the training session!
           Something else popped into my head last night as I was drilling with one of the guys.  The kid is phenomenally strong.  Granted almost every guy is stronger than me in there, they're dudes.  It has been a while since he and I have rolled together.  There is not any particular reason for this, it just so happened we did not have the same training schedule.  I would say it has been about 6 months or so, probably even longer than that.  He was on bottom first and I was inside his guard.  Saying he was strong is an understatement. Grips, pulling, base, everything was so strong.  It got me to thinking.....the changes that people go through while training BJJ.  The last time I rolled with this person we were both new blue belts (I mean we still are but I'm talking baby blue belts).  I don't remember this ridic strength.  Whether he had just been doing BJJ, or strength and conditioning as well, whatever it was, I was being treated like an infant.  It could be that you are finally able to pair that strength with technique together instead of just "muscling" your way through things like we all try to do as white belts.   I believe I even said to this person "dude, you're strong as s***"   Alas, the evolution of the BJJ athlete.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Lutador Results

Yesterday was the Lutador Grappling Challenge at the Cobb Civic Center in Marietta Georgia.  It was a great event that moved smoothly and quickly and was staffed well.  TRT showed up with over 200 competitors and as you can imagine the team took home the title for the second time in a row.  I believe the final score was 476 to 225 for first and second place for the team titles.  This is a great victory for the team seeing as how this tournament is an Alliance run affair.   =)  Yesterday was a nice warmup for the 5 tournaments coming up in the next few months.  I was in a gi and nogi division with 4 ladies including myself, one of which was a fellow teammate Denise.  The first match of the gi portion was against a lady from North Carolina named Christy.  I knew of her but had never seen her compete so I didn't know what to expect.  I pulled guard (yeah i know) and swept.  Then I'm not sure if I got cocky or I was being nonchalant but she was able to sweep me back.  I then worked for a gi choke, received an advantage, and then swept again and the match ended.   Denise was able to control her opponent and we both made it to the finals.  I bowed out to her so we closed out the division.   Nogi was next.  I was eager to compete nogi because I have been training nogi a lot lately and wanted to see how I performed.  I went against a tough opponent from Knuckle Up and I told my coach and Denise that I was going to go for a takedown in that match.  I was going to shoot in for the single as I had been working on this in class.  We started.  Touch hands, go.  We fought for grips, moved our feet, everything was going smoothly.  Then she smacked me on the head.  You know how wrestlers place their hands on each other's heads?  Well I do believe that't what she was trying to accomplish but instead she smacked me...  right on my forehead.  Then I hear her coach say..."Yes, that's it, do it again!" Okay.  I saw red.  I was not going to wait to take this to the ground.  I wanted to be there and I wanted to be there right then.  So I yank her head down, jump guard, we scramble a minute and then I lock in a triangle and finish.   Forehead smack = angry Victoria.  On the other side of the bracket Denise was able to dominate her opponent and we met in the finals again, this time Denise bows out to me.  Then comes the nogi open.  I did this division for experience and of course it would have been nice to win, but I was pleased with my performance.  There were only 6 girls and in the semis I met a purple belt who is a weight class above me and a pan am and world champion this year as well.  It was 7 minutes of me not sweeping or attacking and her not being able to pass.  0-0-0-0 across the board.  She was way more aggressive and won the decision; I was just pumped that she could not pass. :)
           The rest of the team did AMAZINGLY well yesterday.  There was a great turnout on part of the kids and teenagers for the team and that is exciting!  There was a sea of TRT competitor shirts; so many that an Alliance member who came in that morning asked why he didn't get a competitor shirt when he signed up.  (There were so many of those shirts he thought that every person at Lutador was supposed to get one.  Mrs. Avecilla informed him that Jacare would not approve)  haha.  Excited to get back to training tomorrow.  Only a few more training days and then Las Vegas Open!   I looked at the final brackets, there are only 3 of us in the medio division.  This is ok because I am really looking forward to the open more than anything!   Off to the gym, no rest for the not so wicked!
             Congrats to the team for taking the title yesterday!!!   So happy and lucky to be a part of the best team around ;)

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Training and Big Macs

Yeeah!   So the start of another tumultuous and fun tourney season starts in two days.  I will be able to breathe again in November.  I am excited about what the next few months will hold.  I started it off right this am with a massage from Jennifer, who by the way, works wonders for sore and tight muscles.  Then A few cardio sessions and then rest tomorrow in lieu of Lutador Challenge this weekend.   A few of the guys and myself were just debating an issue which is a hot button one for Coach Traven.  The concept of getting a massage, loosening up tight muscles, and then going to train afterwards.  Traven said that it is like having a really great training session and then going to McDonald's and eating 4 Big Macs.  He says no training after a massage.   If you ask some of the other fellas, they get the massage just to loosen up so that they can go and train  BJJ again.  Me?  I had my massage and knew full and well I was going to drink a bit of water and then hop on the stair master in a bit.  I had my upper body worked on today, mainly my shoulders and neck, so I figured the least I could do was tackle the stair master and give the upper body a break.  I definitely see Traven's point however I know for a fact that I have done Jiu Jitsu immediately after a massage before.  oops :)  I will post again after Lutador with team results.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

2 Thumbs Up!

Today I tried a new rashguard from  As soon as I opened it I knew I was probably going to like it.  It was soft material, and I could tell by the cut that it looked snug and (gasp) looked to be a longer fitting top.  I have found that the rashguards I have purchased in the past have never fit me.   The sizing is always a little "iffy" if you will and it will be tight in some places and loose in others.   And let's talk about the elastic bottom.  I am NOT a fan of the elastic bottom.   The draw string and tight elastic bottoms on rashguards tend to force the top to ride up almost immediately and I spend half of my training time pulling it back down.  This rashguard is different!

Design:  The Clinch Gear rashguard I received is short sleeved, predominantly light gray and has black trim on the sides.  The Clinch Gear emblem is inconspicuous making it easy to don the top with a team name or other logo.

Material:  Fantastic!  Super soft and the rashguard is not too thick.  I mean who needs to sweat even more when training because the rash guard is too thick (especially in the gi, it makes you hot enough!)

Fit:  So I assumed that there was going to be some kind of flaw when I put the rashguard on.  For Instance, the sleeves are either too big or the sleeves are tight and the midsection is enormous.  This was not the case at all.  It fit me like a glove, and when I pulled down the bottom of the stayed in place.  I trained Gi this am for 1.5 hours and had no issues with having to constantly readjust (except in between rolls of course, that is unavoidable).  The cut is a bit longer than most, almost like a surfing top.  So I didn't feel like I needed to be 5 feet tall to fit into it.

Overall:   I really like this rashguard.  The material is nice, I like the design, and it fit very well.   I cannot attest to the durability of the product since today was my first time wearing it.  I will cross that bridge if and when I come to it.  :)

Check these guys out for sure!  or    What I like about this site is that they sell one item per day and here is the kicker:  a $5 flat shipping fee!  They sell everything from rashuards to gi's to mma shorts.   Enjoy!!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Double Doozie

Today there was no BJJ for me.   It is kind of weird to take a day off of BJJ during the week, but I got the chance to go to Come Fly Away this evening.  It is a musical based on Frank Sinatra music.  Needless to say, the show was fantastic.  So today I pulled a double dose of the cardio good times.  I teach Cardio kickboxing classes so I took one of my classes (and taught it, yea yea) and then a few hours later I gulped down some GU and pushed myself through a grueling stair master interval session.   Sweat box.  You know how people say girls don't sweat, they glisten?  Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but this girl doesn't sweat, my skin rains puddles onto the earth.  Today the brackets were posted for Lutador Challenge this weekend, and I am relatively disappointed at the number of girls registered!  The past few years there have been big divisions and this year I have 4 in gi, 4 in nogi, and there are 8 of us in the open this tourney.  But this small number of females doesn't change my desire to win...AT ALL.  So the countdown is on....Lutador, then Vegas, then Chicago!  

Monday, August 1, 2011

What just happened?

Do you ever have those training sessions where you feel like you wasted your entire session?  You tell yourself you're going to give it your all, you're going to go in and try new techniques, take risks, and who cares if you get tapped.  That was my intention when I woke up this morning.  However after my first session at 11:30 this am I felt like I did not accomplish any of these goals.  I found myself getting very frustrated with everything I was doing....I was doing the same stuff.  I was in my safezone and I did NOT want to be there.  I want to be that BJJ player that can do it all, and today was supposed to be the start of that mission.  I said its ok, I am going to train again tonight so I will start then.  Well it is now 9:45 at night and 2 more sessions later I am telling myself the same thing.  I have no idea why I trained the way I did today.  Was I just tired?  I felt like after I did 3 classes today that I did not even train hard.  And that is completely my fault.  During the advanced class a majority of the time was dedicated to drilling.  We started from mount and had to escape, winner stays on top.  This is all well and fine and I always tell myself  "hey, youre the only female in here, don't get mad if the bigger guys throw you off of them."  And this is what happened, and I still found myself getting frustrated!   Then we moved onto open guard drills.  Finally my strength.  Oh no, the winner stays on bottom. And I was starting on top.  SO basically I went repeatedly with the same guy who would let me pass and then throw me over top every time. I said "Victoria don't get mad, he is stronger and much bigger than you."  But once again I kept getting mad at myself.  I believe this then carried over to my rolls later on.  I am not chalking today up as a loss, but rather as a lesson that I can't be so damn hard on myself.  Tomorrow I do not get to train due to work and then I have a show to go to tomorrow night, so maybe a day off will do me some good.  Then Wednesday is my last day training BJJ before the tourney Saturday.   TRT!!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Your Jiu Jitsu is boring.....

Riddle me this.....all too often lately I've been hearing people say that other peoples jiu jitsu is boring.  What does this mean exactly?  Not enough movement, not enough action?  The person only has a top game, or the person only has a bottom game?  Well then I guess my jiu jitsu is BORING.  I'll admit, I'm a guard player.  I have the height, the legs, and the grips for it.  I have never tried for a takedown in a gi competition.  I am a guard puller (ahem, do ya KNOW who my coach is?!)  I probably always will be.  I drill positions on top, I have no quams about working on top in class.....I mean let's face it, I need it.  Most of the girls in class that I train with start sitting on their butts so I do not mind working to pass at all.  I wish I was as evenly rounded with my top game.  Will I ever get there?  Maybe.  I don't have that male wrestling intuition where they can plant their foreheads into the mat and granby roll with ease.  Although I will admit I have been working those granby rolls.  :)  But there is nothing more frustrating then when I hear someone say "your jiu jitsu is boring"  or "his jiu jitsu is boring."   I am going to use my boyfriend as an example.  Jeff is a wrestler.  Not just a wrestler, but a damn good one.  He is a top level purple belt under Traven and his top game is great.  When he fights, he will pass your guard.  It takes 6 minutes and 30 seconds to do it, (makes me a nervous wreck) but he is a heavy smothering machine and he is a killer.  I feel sorry for anyone who has to be underneath him in a competition.  He can't even do technique on me because he is so heavy, and he distributes pressure like you would not believe.  I heard some people at the gym (people mind you, who barely train and never compete) say his bjj is boring.   It was mind blowing.  Granted he is my man and I always have the "don't you talk about my man like that" rage in me anyways, but the fact that someone who consistently called boring...does that make sense?  So I guess I am boring.  I play guard.....I sweep to come on top...a lot of my matches start in guard and end in guard.  So I guess I am boring.  Should I be doing front flips and cartwheels?  Maybe that jump suplex greco-roman move I saw on youtube a few days ago.  Who knows.  I do what my coaches tell me to do.  I play to my strengths.  I am trying to take more risks when I train to open up my game more, but that is coming in very small baby steps.  I try and mimic what I am taught, and I look up to those who coach and teach me.  That's that.  I can't wait to wake up tomorrow and be boring......

Sunday is the Funday

I appreciate the off day of the week like no other...I always say im going to sleep in, but sleeping in means 9 o clock wake up time.  Yesterdays training was probably the last SUPER hard training for the next 3 weeks.  In ladies class we did closed guard drill for 20 minutes and then we did takedown drill for about 15 minutes.  Coming from someone who wants to be on the ground asap, being on the feet for 15 straight minutes will take it clear right out of you.  During the combined class the girls all did a final nogi session in prep for Lutador next weekend.  I really feel like my nogi has done a complete 180 in the past few months!  Absolutely cannot wait for nogi Pan Ams!!    The next 3 weeks are going to be Bonkers;  Lutador next weekend, Las Vegas Open the next weekend, and then Chicago Open the weekend after that!   Bonkers but I'll enjoy every minute of it!  

I was contacted a few days ago by BJJHQ about trying out a rashguard and then reviewing it on here.  Very excited to get it.  Let's face it, you can NEVER have too many rashguards!!  So I will keep this updated.

On to enjoy the Sunday.....maybe Harry Potter later?

Thursday, July 28, 2011


Sorry it's been a hot minute since the last post, this week has been a blur.  Starting last Saturday my training intensity has absolutely hit the roof.  The frequency is about the same, but something inside of me is in beast mode, probably due to all of the competitions coming up.  Its a fun time, my head is in the game!!  My weight is fabulous right now, and my energy level is at an all time max.  I added another client, so I am up at the booty crack of dawn every day so I am having to alter my sleep schedule....that means no more Rescue Me and Franklin and Bash...Dangit!!!!  I am in bed by 10, so I only have an hour after I'm done training to get my shenanigans organized and hit my respective sack.   Im tryin Im tryin.  Song Mood?  Super Bass by Nicki Minaj.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

BJJ Shenanigans

So this has been a great training week thus far, except for the ever so present forearm splints.  lol.  They come and go in waves, so I'm not worried about it.  Besides when its showtime I don't feel a thing except the desire to freaking win.   No gi is also coming along great, it helps that I have some wonderful teammates and coaches to roll with and help me learn.  And FYI if I hear anymore Pitbull songs his summer I might beat up a stranger.  During the 2 kb classes I'm teaching this am I have heard at least 5 songs with him in them.  Also an FYI, if I see anyone else walk into the bathoom here at Unit 2 with no shoes on I am in fact going to beat them up.  Oh and ppl shin guards don't count as shoes.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Early Thirty!!

Yeay it is a few weeks before the Lutador, and then the week following that the Las Vegas Open (theres a chance im a lil' bit excited about Vegas).  I do not think there is nogi at the Vegas Open this year, which is kind of a bummer because I've been training for it!  Ah well, I will just have to wait until the nogi Pans to let that flag fly.  Whoomp!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Saturdays are fun.....

So Saturdays and Wednesdays are my favorite training days of the week for two reasons.  The womens classes are on both of these days, and I only have bjj these days, meaning I dont have to worry about a weight or cardio session on these days.   at 10 am the ladies train.  There were only 4 of us today, but we still got a solid 40 30 minutes of rolling in.  Following this class is and 11:30 all skill levels gi class.   Today Traven had a seminar so Jeff taught.  He allowed Anna and myself to roll no gi, seeing as how Lutador is coming up quickly!   I am not incredibly comfortable in this aspect of the game, but the more I get to train no gi the better I start to feel.   After making the mats so sweaty that Anna and I were like the roadrunner trying to take off, we decided that was enough.  Then an afternoon of Sam's club (which is a dang task/adventure in itself) and now relaxing and I refuse to do anything the rest of the evening expect lie here and watch King of Queens.  

Friday, July 8, 2011

Call me Crazy......

I guess I am used to the ridiculously hot BJJ room at Unit 2......Traven will often turn on the furnace to 90 in the middle of the summer!  I don't mind this, I have always liked to sweat buckets.   I suppose I am used to this because I walked into the fitness center at my apartment complex and was uncomfy.  I walk in and there are 3 dudes doing their "Insanity" workout off of a computer they had plugged in.  No worries, they were working pretty hard.  I had a problem with this:  They had turned down the a/c to 68 degrees.  I mean come on ppl, do you really not like to sweat that much?  Call me crazy, but I always semi-equated the amount of sweat pouring off of a person to how hard that person was working.  They were bouncing around and what not, with no sweat.  I grunted onto the elliptical, knowing that it was going to take a miracle for me to sweat like I wanted.  Then I felt the burn in my throat and chest, like I was running in 32 degree weather.  I was getting anggrrrryyy......I pushed to my limit for 40 minutes, trying to get through my last session of the day.   I looked shirt was barely wet, my face had barely beaded up, and of course there was no sweat to be found anywhere else.  I felt like I had failed.  Call it a complex.  I was not a happy panda.

First time's a charm!

So I'm finally doing it....starting a blog.  Yeah I know I am about 5 years too late, but better now than never!   A little about myself:  I am a 28 year old full time graduate student (I swear it never ends) and a full time BJJ practitioner.  Every day I wake up, train/teach classes at the gym, rest, then go back for more training.  During the school year this is the same except with classes during my rest time.  I recently earned my CSCS, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist certificate, so I have taken on a few hard-working clients.   I have a wonderful, supportive family and the most wonderful boyfriend on the planet.  I have the pleasure of living across the street from the gym, Unit 2 Fitness, and I am a member of the best BJJ familia, Roberto Traven Jiu Jitsu.  For those of you who do not know who Roberto Traven is, give 'em a quick googlin' and you will undoubtedly agree that I am one of the lucky ones to be training under such a name!  I also have a lil' black beast named Roxy, a grumpy pitador whom I love dearly.  haha.  You will hear much about her.  Well enough about all this, I will post more soon as well as some pics.  I'm new to this game so bear with me.  Im hungry.