I'm slowly getting back my training pace. This Saturday's session marked the first time my training pace was at 3x/week since the first week of May (my first week of unemployment, not ironically). You'd think being out of work would only increase my training pace - and, starting this week, that will be the case. But between a visit to La Familia back in Maryland/D.C., coming home with a head cold, trying to get my freelance hustle going and, for better or worse, spelunking for a full-time gig ("To give us an idea of your writing skills, please write a 200-word essay on the topic of your choice. Your essay must reference peanut butter and jelly sandwiches."), I've actually found it hard to focus on jiu-jitsu.
Actually, focusing on jiu-jitsu hasn't been hard. Getting to the academy has. It's a weird thing to be spending so much time and energy training, and then go home and do ... well, not the job you've been doing for the past 4-5 years, but instead the "honey do" list, the Craig's List, the "what I wish I'd done with my money when I was making some" list ... It's hard to not feel a little, well, certainly not "lazy", but, I don't know, inappropriate. As in, what the hell am I doing practicing sweeps, takedowns, and submissions when I should be looking for a job?
However persistent that argument has been, it clearly has not yet won the day. And training sessions like I had on Saturday will continue to make it difficult for that end of the conversation. The Effing Pass continues to be my salvation. Again, even if I don't get the pass, I've got a gameplan, a map of the journey that I've never had before. And what's even better is that I'm starting to actually chain my guard passing, going from the Effing Pass to a double unders then switching to the drop leg option in the double unders pass ... It's like nothing I've ever been able to do in my passing game in all the years I've been training and it is hard to exaggerate how good it feels.
And today, with that Z-guard leg drag I picked up from Jason Scully (who I've been a big fan of ever since his "silent movie" days - "Psycho! Groupie! Cocaine! Crazy!") .... It's just been a great two days of work on the mat, the kind of work that reminds you why you train.
Today (Monday) we worked on opening the guard from the knees. One of the good things about doing the Fundamentals over and over is that you really start to internalize the technique. It's like you are running down this dim passageway - chasing or evading, depending on your personality, I suppose - and then, all of a sudden, a door appears out of nowhere. And when you reach for it, it flies open before you grasp the knob, not just inviting you to enter, but to do so with a sense of urgency, a sense of opportunity.
There's nothing like that moment of discovery. It's what helps keep you not just learning, but integrating, connecting.
159.1 on the scale, post-train on Saturday. 158.8 on the scale, post-train on Monday. This is how we do.