Monday, 30 November 2009

stripe and seminars

Well last night was the last night of our 2 week semiar with alex monsalv, I managed to make it to most of the classes and really enjoyed his style of bjj. Feel like my game is getting better now that I've stopped sitting down on my ass and pulling gaurd so much which was a slight problem before, I think the reason I started doing it so much is 1) I suck at standing and passing open guard and 2) guard seemed like the safer option with most of the bigger or more technical guys. BUT thats not how my game is in competition so its good to at least be more agressive and try passing their gaurd.

We had 3 belt upgrades from white to blue, one was ali who just turned 16 so could switch his green belt to blue rolling with him still frustrates the hell out of me becasue he's fast and uses positions the other guys just physically can't (i think he secretly trains yoga). Muneer and Jeff also got thier blue belt so congratulations I think that makes around 10 of us now? Reza also gave stripes out I was a bit surprised but also happy to get one as it feels like i just graded to blue not that long ago.

In other news lost my passport so probably won't be coming back to the UK before january as the uk embasy is having problems at the minute soo kinda bumed about that but at least it means I can plan my trip properly and maybe do the europeans or some other comps when i'm over.

Heres a couple of bjj quotes I found that I like

A real jiu-jitsu fighter does not go around beating people down. Our defense is made to neutralize aggression. "
-Helio Gracie

"The secret to this sport is while you are the nail hang in there, let them hit you. Untill the day that you become the hammer and then you smash them back." - Renzo Gracie

Tuesday, 24 November 2009


Feeling too sick to write anything remotely intelligent or entertaining, was getting into a really good training routine till alex infected me with flu haha ahh well at least we get to spend some time together even if it is wrapped up in blankets watching californication and burn notice :)

Till I recover Here's some pics from training

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

sunshine and shwarma's

Not been to training much the last few weeks, not sure why, really lacking motivation as I just don't feel like I have a good training partner here so I've just gotten in to the habit of playing defensively and not doing a much else plus there are no competitions until the Europeans and that's if I manage to go mehh so things are a bit doom and gloom at the minute. Trying to check out if there are many females training in the UAE found that there was a purple belt called Ghalia Baggily teaching in dubai buuut shes not there any more, dropped her a message on fb asking if there were many other girls training there becasue I can't find any useful info on google!!! Had my birthday but it just made me feel homesick which is stupid seeing as this is technically home.

I'm still really enjoying capoeira it would be nice to do some stand up again too but maybe I'll just buy a punching bag for now as I don't think my body cant take any other more classes at the minute. I've been taking loads of vitamins for my joints, my fingers hurt like hell at the minute and look ooogly too (too much playing guard). Its helped a bit its a mix of glucosamine sulphate, msm and fish-oil so hopefully after a month they will take effect.

Recent academy news Alex Monsalve from Alliance is coming out for 2 weeks on the 15th november which means there will be 3 black belts teaching :)

I've been earning some money by doing circuit training, personal training and diet/nutrition plans which has been keeping me busy. See example diet for male athlete 76kg training 10h a week aim lose 2kg body fat maintain lean body mass

Carbohydrate: 318g (1272 kcal) 55% total daily intake
Protein: 145g (580kcal) 25% total daily intake
Fat = 50g (423kcal) 20% total daily intake

80g (400kcal)surplus carbs for sports drink/recovery bars if needed on heavy training day

Breakfast (2h before training)
50g porridge oats
300ml skimmed milk
1 carton 150g low fat yogurt
100g berries

Midmorning snack 4 oat cakes
120g cottage cheese

Lunch (2-4 hours before training or 3 hours after last meal)
Low GL for slow release of energy during long training session
175g grilled white fish
1 large sweet potato 300g
1 portion of carrots 85g
1 portion of broccoli 85g

Post training High GI snack (if training in evening for quick absorption of glucose and replenishment of glycogen stores)
2 alpine bar
200ml chocolate milk
1 medium apple

Dinner 2-4 hours after training or 3 hours after last meal/snack

Brown rice 85g uncooked weight

120g grilled chicken

1 large portion 85g vegetables

Exercise wise I'm liking partner exercises as they work well and are also fun, most of them would fit in really well with bjj or any martial arts training as you can get a good conditioning work out in without the need for too much equipment.
Here's some video's I found on Youtube :)

Monday, 12 October 2009

Training lots

Well I have been back for a month now and training is going well. Haven't updated in a while which is rubbish seeing as all I have been doing in training due to lack of job! Anyways as we have a couple new teachers over from Brazil class times have changed to 2 hours at night from 7-9 and 1 hour in the morning from 10-11. My schedule has been looking somethings like this.

sunday: BJJ 10-11, Nogi 7-9
monday: Capoeira 6-7 BJJ 7-9
tuesday BJJ 10-11, 7-9
Wednesday: capoeria 6-7 BJJ 7-9
thursday: BJJ 10-11, 7-9
friday: off
saturday: capoeria 6-7 BJJ 7-9

Saying that I missed yesterday completely as I was tired and decided to take the guys out on the boat in the afternoon, so I crashed out early and slept through no gi training. My new Brazilian friends have labelled it with great amusement "vagabond style" As i still have no job and have just been training and showing them round Bahrain.

In other news I started doing capoeira, as we have a new teacher called Luciano who pretty much just defies gravity. I have been so focused on bjj that I thought it would be good to mix things up and try capoeria while I have the chance. The first class is a blur and I didn't really have a clue what was going on, my brain is defiantly more wired for fighting on the ground! We started by doing a warm up which included jumping over and ducking under some kind of stick and lots of stretching then he taught the basic stance or ginga position and worked on attack and defence from there. By the second class I was starting to pick up on some of the names and actually realise what was going on a bit more, this class we worked on handstands and headstands, headstands i can do but handstands still need a bit of work! I found it a bit more easy to get the rhythm when we were sparing at the end. I'm really enjoying the class so far I like the music played on the berimbau which is like a huge bow, the class gives me a completely different energy than bjj, for now I'm doing 3 classes a week but I'll see how it goes after a month I might start doing more.

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Lilac Vulkan gi

I'm happy that my birthday and christmas are coming up - if anyone is wondering what to get me I really like this gi!- Tried on the new vulkan light weight and the fit is great and are really good quality. If anyone is looking for one you can get them from budovideos website (link under womans training gear) they deliver super fast, I was impressed when my friend ordered one and it found its way to Bahrain in a matter of days! Oh and I just read Georgette (see my blog roll) has ordered one and is going to review it so I'll be looking forward to reading that!

Saturday, 3 October 2009

Throws and Takedowns

As this part of my game is lacking quite a bit I decided to get my ass into gear and start working on the standup part of my game. There are loads of different techniques and approaches to take the match to the floor in BJJ. Very broadly speaking there are 2 options, one is to pull a form of guard and therefore commence the fight from this position to work on sweeps or submissions. The second is working to get a takedown or throw and ending up in a dominant position usually in side control or mount. In all of my fights I have used some kind of takedown or throw, or someone has pulled guard on me.

I guess so far I have been lucky as to be honest I never had a particular throw or takedown in mind I usually ended up countering my opponents move when I felt them off balanced. So I browsed online for a good DVD to get me inspired and ordered "Brazilian jiu jitsu - techniques and tactics volume one throws and takedowns"

The dvd is presented by master Marcus vinicius di lucia, and is very well organised. It begins with a number of judo throws divided into legs hip and arm throws. Once you watch the dvd a few times and start to remember all the traditional judo names for things you can then watch the section on combination and counter throws which starts to get your brain ticking a bit more on not just how to attack with only one option but know how to respond to your opponents response and use this to your advantage. The last section is on takedowns which I have never really enjoyed probably because they often involve alot of explosive strength and changing levels to shoot in which I don't mind in no-gi but tend to steer clear of in bjj as I'm usually with heavier people and have more luck with throws. However we have been drilling lots of takedowns at rezas so maybe I will start to get the hang of them a bit more.

I would defiantly recommend this DVD for white and blue belts, it helps you to feel a bit more confident regarding your standup which is often where people seem to have the biggest problems. It also includes a bonus section with some good stretches and a quick cardio workout. So far I have managed to successfully switch between the leg throws O soto gari and o uchi gari

Here's a clip of the dvd from Youtube

Friday, 18 September 2009

Bahrain BJJ

Well after what seems like the longest wait I finally arrived back to Bahrain late on Wednesday night. It was the weirdest thing stepping off the plane, for me I always notice smells first, Bahrain just smells completely different to England, the crisp clear autumn smell has been replaced with the seasonless dessert humidity. Annoyingly the relief I thought I would feel when I got here has yet to make an appearance.

I felt so nervous going to training at Reza's again for a mixture of reasons, mainly I was worried that reza wouldn't think that I should have got my blue belt, as the guys that train there are all really good. Training didn't really do anything to make me feel better about that, me and alex were just messing around and I did that triangle escape Ze had showed us where you hold the same collar to choke them and stack them till their legs open then go for double leg pass, I think its more of a last option but Reza saw and was like you should never do that you'll just get arm-barred and then drilled triangle escapes where you posture up to break their position. So from the beginning I felt kinda like my head wasn't in the game which I never get I always feel like when I train I'm so focused. Anyways as it was Ramadan there wasn't too many people there and fasting all day must mean alot of the guys don't have their usual vast amounts of energy so we just rolled for about and hour as Thursday is like an open mat session. I rolled with Alex, reza and ali, felt like I knew nothing, I think its going to take alot of training there to get back into the swing of things but luckily this year I will be doing lots of training and I know when I feel like I'm doing good here it will mean that I really am getting better.

The next competition the club here are doing is the Asian super cup but I don't think there will be girls competing, still I'm going to train like I intend on going to it just in case. And finally, a bit of good news in the midst of all my doom and gloom, there was a girl at bjj! She's a good foot taller than me and hella strong which should mean I have to really work on my technique, but I'm not complaining. Hopfully tomorrows training goes better, for now at least I have fixed my diet and sorted out my S&C training. My mantra for the next few months will have to be nothing in life worth doing is ever going to be easy, training 6 days a week with bigger stronger guys ain't easy but slowly and steadily progressing in bjj is worth it!

Monday, 14 September 2009

Fond Farewells and BJJ battlefield

Well Saturday was the last training session in eastbourne, which was also the first grading held at canton martial arts. It was a fun and some what emotional last training session as Ze graded me to blue belt, along with Sophie, Alex, Ian, Adam, Ruben and Olly. I'm really happy that I was there for the grading as its been very tempting to go back to Bahrain early. Still trying to get all my stuff packed which is taking for ever it seems every time I think all my clothes are packed up i find another drawer full, that plus the 5 gi's and millions of books I refuse to part ways with has certainly posed a challenge for Alex (I was forbidden from actually participating in the packing process as Alex decided things would go alot smoother if I just brought him everything and stayed out the way)

This post is mainly just a thank you to all the great people I've trained with this year, all the canton guys who were there from the start, the "little guys" as we were so often referred to Joe and Sophie and more recently naz and Emma. Richard for letting me and alex come and do a bit of training every now and then. Tolly for sticking it out despite the first class when none of us knew anything, being such a good coach and bringing so many different people together. All the guys at slough, Ze for taking the time to coach me at competitions and making the trek to eastbourne to do seminars with us. Issac, richy, manj, chin for all the great rolls and constructive criticism lol. All the bad ass bjj girlies I've met at competitions and seminars, I'm sure I'll see you all soon you inspire me to keep training hard I'll miss you lots, come visit me in Bahrain

This is where i'll be training :)

Got back from a final goodbye at training so thought I would post some funny pictures of the mad royal rumble style game Tolly got everyone involved in

Friday, 11 September 2009

Tatami Gi Review

The more gi's I acquire the more I realise that it must be so hard for some girls to find one that fits right. Every gi I have ordered has been an A1 and while they all "fit" so to speak I have yet to find one that would take the place of my koral pants/ RGA jacket combo for competitions. I don't know if its just me that favours a particularly snug fit but it would be good if there was gi's suitable to a womanly physique available in the UK.

Anyways rant aside I do really like my tatami gi, I've wanted a black one for ages and at a very reasonable 45 quid i got my wish. Communication was very good, I received notification that my gi had been shipped and it arrived 2 days later. In terms of fit the pants are the perfect length for me and the jacket, despite having a much longer skirt than my other gi's also fits well with perhaps just a bit too much room in the shoulders, but Alex had success shrinking his so will give that a try when the tumble dryer gets fixed! I also got the pink rash guard size medium, its a stretchy breathable material and washes up really well.

I will post some more pictures later but I defiantly recommend this gi, the A1 size would be good for any one between 5'4 to 5'7 from 60-70kg at a rough estimate.

I was talking to my coach Reza in Bahrain and he was saying that there will be bjj 6 times a week with more classes a day, which means there will be lots of training to do when we get back. It will be the last few days of Ramadan and then I'll hopefully manage to find a job quickly and start saving some money!

Friday, 4 September 2009

Catfight Gi review

I ordered a catfigh gi a while back, but unfortunately the A2 size they sent me ended up being way too big despite my attempts to shrink it. Luckily when I contacted them they were very helpful and sent me a new one in the right size which I'm very happy with. I got the raspberry colour similar to the atama kyra gracie one. If you are in the UK and thinking of getting one make sure you ask them about sizing because I think they have updated it to a smaller fit. Parcel force will charge around 20 quid surplus for tax too so bare that in mind.

The green gi is the catskull style and includes a small skull logo on the front of the gi and the catfight logo plus the cat skull logo above

The pink gi is the original style and includes a patch on the front lapel and the catskull logo at the bottom of the gi

The main difference between the 2 different styles, apart from size of course, is the different patches and the drawstring style on the pink gi compared to the usual style on the green pants. All in all I really like this gi, there was a few shrieks and hulk remarks when I bounced into training with the green one on so I'll see what peoples responses to the pink one are tomorrow! I've not really commented on sizes becasue I think they have changed thier sizing charts but A1 seems to be a good fit for me and I'm 5"4 and about 60kg.

I'll be reviewing the tatami gi soon, I stupidly sent it to my billing address in London but luckily my auntie is bringing it down with her when she comes for a visit.

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Girls only 2 Stockholm!!!

Well the past few days I have been digging around for more information on the girls only martial arts camp in Stockholm, the camp will be taking place over 3 days from Friday 30th October to the Sunday 1st November.

I Have sent of my registration form and emailed them for information about the best airport to fly into but from what I could find Ryan air fly to either vasteras or skavsta both of which are about 1 hour and a half from Nacka.

Coach details

Skavsta – downtown Stockholm
Travel time: 80 minutes
Price: Round trip SEK 249, one way SEK 150*

Västerås – downtown Stockholm
Travel time: 75 minutes
Price: Round trip SEK 249, one way SEK 150* (BOTH AROUND 21 BRITISH POUNDS)

So it would seem that despite the long trek to get to Stockholm best value for money is to be fly to these airports.

Arlanda and Bromma are the 2 more central airports and there appears to be a number of modes of transport available including the arlanda express, a train service that gets you to the center in about 20 minutes.

The preliminary scedule for the 3 days is as follows
18.00 registration and payment.
19.00-20.30 BJJ

10.00-11.30 Judo
12.00 Lunch at the dojo.
13.30-15.00 BJJ
15:30-17:00 Theoretical lecture
17.30-19.00 Sparring
20.00 Dinner.

10.00-11.15 Submission Wrestling
12.00-13.15 BJJ

link to the facebook event

I'm pretty much 90% sure that I'm going to this and will hopefully book my flights as soon as I get back to Bahrain, I will probably fly with British airways as they seem to be the only airline who have a good deal and fly the most direct route to Arlanda. I'm really looking forward to this, it will be good to hopefully see some of the girls from the uk there too and If your thinking of going get on it and book flight now while there cheap Ryan air seem to have the best deals. Will probably post alot about this over the next month so check here regularly and I'll keep you posted on any more information I manage to find out.

In other news I hopefully have 2 new gi's on their way a pink catfight and a black tatami, haha it actually feels like Christmas eve as I also ordered a ton of books and DVDs off amazon hehe. So as usual I am broke but as they were all things I couldn't really get in Bahrain I splurged a bit. Anyways off to bed for me, I skipped out on training because I'm feeling pretty crappy at the minute, felt really sick and gassed after last night training and I only rolled about 4 times, so tonight's bjj involved watching a bunch of videos on and alot of imaginary rolling in my head, bjj is a mental game after all !

Monday, 31 August 2009

Highs and Lows

The last few months have been pretty up and down and full of changes. Firstly I graduated from Uni, then my parents called it quits on their marriage with my mum moving back to the UK from the middle east, and now I'm in the process of packing and tying up lose ends before I head back to Bahrain. Hopefully I'll be able to find a job and start saving up enough money to travel and have a year to build upon the sporadic amount of skills that a course in sports science actually indented in me. Over the three years I have acquired an interest in health and nutrition as opposed to the biomechanics and training of elite athletes, although the last year of training bjj has increased my interest in the latter field.

Soo why am I rambling about all this, mainly because people are always nagging at me not to bottle things up and constantly be in a state of panic about things I can't control. Easier said than done, But i do feel that I'm ready to embrace change and have a fresh start so to speak, which is probably why the last few months and probably in the next few weeks, I have been extra stressed out. It doesn't seem to have affected my training too much, in fact its nice to have those few hours a day where I just focus all my energy into training and with most of my friends being back home I haven't had too many distractions or people nagging at me to come and party. I don't think many people realise how much time and effort I put into training or how much I enjoy it, I like that I feel healthier and stronger both mentally and physically as cheesy as that sounds.

Anyways to put an end to my jibber jabber and return to the matter at hand I think I will be leaving on the 14th which is a couple of days after grading. Me and Alex are going to try and actually get the same flight home which for some reason over the last 3 years we have only managed to organise about once. It would be cool to make it to the Scandinavian open and I just saw online on a blog called (check out the highlight video)that there will be a bjj camp on 30 October -1st November in Stockholm. I still need to find more info on this but it looks like it would defiantly be worth going to, but I'll have to see how much money I have loser to the time. Got training tonight, monday classes have got so big with about 20 people, I think everyone is stepping it up as grading is in 2 weeks time. Grading also marks the 1 year anniversary of tolly teaching classes in eastbourne and will hopfully leave the uk on a high with lots of new skills to bring to the bahrain club. Anyways check out the video and if anyone has any more info regarding the camp please leave me a message.

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Catfight gi needs a good home & another 10hours training week

Well its nearing the end of another busy training week, Saturday at canton and Sparta, Sunday at slough, Monday at canton, Tuesday slough and today at canton. This week I feel a bit more focused have been working on my guard game alot which seems to be improving, I feel like I can really control most people from there and have been using spider guard to sweep or get a triangle or controlling one arm and going for a collar choke, arm bar or sweep.

Saturdays class was pretty chilled it was just me, Alex, Ian, Ben and Isaac who came down from slough, Saturday class was open mat style although tolly threw in a drill where your in the push up position and your partner holds your legs and dead lifts as you press down, we did this just twice for a minute each time for 4 minutes in total but by the end my muscles were quivering especially during the push up part! After lots of rolling me Alex and Isaac went to Sparta and just messed around and drilled some stuff, practiced my sweeps even though gripping was still killing my fingers.

Sunday we got to slough kind of lateish it was just me Alex and tolly that went up, practised a sweep using x guard when someone stands to pass your guard, It took me a while to understand and Alex has a good base even when drilling but at least it gave me more to think about when people stand up in my guard in terms of where their balance and weight are.

Mondays class was hard, to start off the mat space was smaller than usual because the gym is getting a boxing ring put in so it was messy as hell in there with loads of junk lying around and dust all over the mats, it also happened to be a really busy class with about 20 people compared to the usual 13 so things were a bit cramped during the warm up. Tolly made us do a circuit of the push up/deadlifts, bucking our hips with our partner lying across of us in side control type position, leap frogging over and crawling under, triangle situps then side jumps over our partner. I didn't get too gassed during this but my legs were still stiff from Saturday so I nearly fell on soph a couple of times on the last few side jumps. Then we did an abs circuits of crunches interspersed with pushups, again I felt OK doing these just closed my eyes and listened to everyone counting them out as I was second from last. We drilled passing spider guard and going to either a choke or armbar from knee on belly position, then as one of the passes involved rolling your opponent back into turtle position practiced a clockwork collar choke from there. I rolled with Sophi, Joe, Ben, Alex, dean and Paul and Chris. Managed to control Sophi and Joe pretty well with my guard game same with Paul although i find it hard to escape from side control with him I just tried to keep him in guard the whole time. Ben and Chris still go quite hard when they roll, so i tend to slow right down, was stuck in Ben's guard the whole time but he wasn't attacking too much more controlling. Alex and Dean tend to roll alot slower sometimes give me tips which I usually am too stubborn to listen to at the time but usually manage to think about after.

Yesterday up at slough more x guard followed by lots of rolling, had a good roll with another white belt, they tried to pull guard, i passed into side control, took mount, worked on controlling and tried for the ezekyl but he freaked and swept me tried to lock one of my arms in an Americana, i defended with my foot, haha out of nowhere my foot was there kicking his arm away, went to spider guard had the perfect triangle set up and time went! Had another good roll with a purple belt I hadn't seen before, had control of one arm and was going for the collar choke when ze came over and showed me how to do an arm bar from that position which I'm going to try drill some more tonight. Manj helped me with passing spider guard showing me to go to the right side so I didn't get sweeped, I think he's the only person I can take advice from while I'm rolling because he makes me do it till I actually understand what he means.

In other news I'm thinking of selling my green cat fight gi as its just a bit too big for me :-( so if anyone would be interested in buying it let me know will post pictures and sizing after training tonight I've only worn it a handful of times so its in really good condition, its an A2 I think it would do for someone 5"7 bigger build than me. If anyone wants to check it out now their website is and its the green cat skull style.

Tuesday, 11 August 2009

graduation, celebrations and vacations

As i predicted in my last post the weekend after the competition was indeed the calm before the storm, the last ten days or so have been hella busy! Got back from Valencia on Monday morning at about 4.30 after trekking all the way from stanstead to eastbourne, me and alex just about avoided killing one another on the trip back as we were both so grumpy after all the travelling. I'm Looking forward to getting back to training after a weekend of lazing on the beach and eating my weight in puntillas and paella!

Scotland was good fun, got to see pretty much all my family and spent a nice day sailing with my aunt and uncle, I've decided that I'm determined to overcome my fear of the sea and sailing seemed like a good place to start. I even managed to steer the thing for a while without capsizing and only felt somewhat seasick towards the end. Managed to check out Royce Gracie Scotland in Rutherglen on Saturday morning, Megan who I had met at one of the competitions trains there and it was fun to have a roll with her and some different people. Scott McVeigh, a brown belt, took the class which involved a good warm up with some circuits before drilling some guard passes and a knee bar that I failed to master!

Went and trained at btt in slough yesterday, got there late so basically spent 40 minutes just rolling and it was sooo dam hot! I like training in slough because i get to train with purple and blue belts which is nice because i know they'll roll more controlled and fluid whereas in eastbourne theres alot of new people at the minute who go completely crazy every time! That plus the 20kg most of them have of me always makes me a bit paranoid about getting injured. I tend to get to practice alot more stuff in slough although i hardly ever tap anyone.

Tonight's training was fun, had a good warm up and then drilled scissor sweep to mount escapes for about 15 minutes, I was with Dan and felt like I got the hang of it really well by the end. We then went over an armbar from back defiantly would need to drill that more, still not a huge fan of armbars. Then much to Alex's annoyance, tolly went over bow and arrow choke which Alex had slowly working his way through the class killing everyone with, the bow and arrow choke seems pretty much impossible to get out of when someone has it set up, I've been killed with it countless times by isaac in slough and by Alex drilling it over and over haha. The last part of the class was spent rolling I basically tried insisting more on things and making a point of countering sweeps and really working on my guard game which went well.

Just chilling at home now and owwwww my poor fingers have been rubbed raw it always seems to happen after I've not trained for a while. Luckily I don't feel too stiff and cant complain of any other injuries so I guess I'll count my blessings but still owwwwch! Think our grading is coming up on the 12th september, some of us have been training for about a year now so it should be interesting to see if anyone gets their blue belt, till then heres some of the competitions i'm thinking of going to, if anyone reading this is doing them let me know as the number of girls competing is always a factor when deciding what ones to do.

Competitions I'm thinking of doing
matrial games - loughbrough - 5th september
bristol open - bath - 6th september
CBJJE europeans - switzerland - 19th september

Sunday, 26 July 2009

3rd Brighton Grab and Pull

Well its the day after the competition, it was great to have one on home turf which meant that we didn't have to get up too early. We got to the king Alfred leisure center at about 9.30, which gave the boys time to get changed and hit the warm up mats! the whole event was filmed and streamed live online so that people could watch which is a pretty new concept to have at a bjj comp so thanks to Gus the competition organiser for sorting that out.

There was alot of us from Eastbourne competing this time including me and Sophie cook- female white belt, lee finch, Dan osborne, Alex broers, Steve, Paul Brown, Ben Donahue, Dan, Pete, Sam scobie, in various white belt categories along with our coach Tolly competing in the purple belt category and a couple of guys from BTT slough.

I watched a few peoples fights but me and soph were up fighting pretty quickly at 12. There was 5 female white belts there, Pippa Granger was kind enough to sort out the brackets splitting it up to sophie and Camilla in the light weight cat and me Rachel Passfield and Vlavena Agapekyan in the heavier cat. Sophie did really well against Camilla wining on points. I had to fight Rachel first which was a tough match I got the points for take down and mount and then won with an ezekyl choke. I wasn't looking forward to fighting Vlavena again as last time when we had to fight standup for 6 minutes. This time it was equally hard she got the 2 points for the take down and was in my guard for the rest of the fight which was about a minute and a half. I was kind of gutted to loose just by 2 points but it was still a good fight.

For the absolute i got a bye in the first match when Rachel fought camilla and won. The match was going pretty much the same and I was about to try for the ezekyl choke again when she started screaming and tapping, i think as she was trying to buck and turn she had hurt her rib? So I won that match which meant winning the absolute as Vlavena had dropped out as her lip had split when we were fighting.

couple of pics from this grab and pull and the last one

All in all another good competition and we came back with a few medals and a lot more experience as a team, which will help to improve everyones game and I'm sure we will all be training harder and working on new things. I bumped into Jadon who writes The tapping like riverdance blog (see my blog list) and he was updating me on his travels to all the different BJJ schools, Also bumped into Emma Leavy who i fought at the British open, it seemed like a few of the girls I know are injured atm so i hope everyone gets better soon! If anyone is looking for pictures of the event I think there will be some on and within the next week.

Today now equals sitting around blogging having a nice hot bath and doing some yoga and will probably be the calm before the storm as I have my graduation on Wednesday and then my grandparents 50th wedding anniversary in Scotland followed by a quick trip to Spain, where we might check out a club where out friend Isaac from btt trains.

I think my training in the next few months will involve drilling
the hell out of a couple of takedowns, practicing my guard game, seeking out a few more girls to train with, (need to talk to meg about when to have another ladies open mat)and maybe a bit of strength training now my cardio is back on track.
The next competition I'm thinking of doing is the Bristol open on the 6th of September which gives me lots of time to train and be ready for that.

Saturday, 18 July 2009

competition preparation

Well the third grab and pull competition is less than week away, this will be my 4rth big comp so I thought i would post my thoughts on what to expect if its your first competition.

Competitions generally start in the morning at around 9, when you get there you will need to register and try find out what time you will be fighting. This is sometimes posted up on the wall, if not just bug someone till you find out when because if its right away you'll want to go warm up and if its alot later on you can think about when to eat, and maybe chill out and nap for a bit.

White belts are typically on first usually in order of weight. The order of purple, blue, brown varies with any black belt fights near the end however this varies from comp to comp. You will be weighed just before you fight, so make sure if your a white belt you make weight the day before as there is unlikely to be any time to run around and sweat it out.
Most competitions are elimination style i.e. if you lose your first fight then you'll only get to fight once, to get to the finals you may have to have about 8 fights especially in popular categories such as white and blue belt light-middle weight.

For all us female competitors we usually all compete at roughly the same time in the afternoon. You will usually have a couple of people in your weight category with the option to fight in an absolute later in the day. Be aware that sometimes if theres smaller numbers it can feel a bit unfair when theres no one to compete against and you have to move up and fight heavier competitors especially if you've worked hard to cut weight, or conversly have someone heavier grouped with you.
Its for that reason that i wouldn't recommend making huge cuts in weight particularly at white belt level. To me I would rather maybe fight someone a bit bigger and have eaten a good amount of food and kept my strength up the week before than be starving and grumpy the day of the competition. I would expect about 1-3 fights in your weight category and possibly more in the absolute division if its not held too much later in the day.

what to bring?
Food: Brazilian jiujitsu competitions usually start early and finish late! you don't want to be running around trying to find food while your there, with the exception of a cheeky 5 quid acai berry shake, so its important to bring enough with you.

fruit - bananas and oranges grapes always go down well and are good to eat before your fight as they are quickly digested and provide an immediate source of energy

A nice carb meal to refuel after your fight particularly if you have been cutting weight all week

Plenty of water and a couple of carb drinks if you prefer a quick drink over food

Clothes: as competitions tend to be a drive or a train away i usually wear something comfy and loose and bring along a pair of flip flops for once you've changed into your gi

Music: if its your first comp its nice to chill out and drown out the sound of people frantically talking bout last minute game plans. You should go into the mat feeling as calm as possible with a clear mind if you've trained hard then stick to what you know

You might want to bring a pillow/sleeping mask to have a quick nap if you got up early and arnt fighting till later on.

Camera: to get some some pics of your fight, sometimes professional photographers take pictures and film the fights check out and for info about pictures of competitions

The week before

This week i'm planning on going to training on Monday and Wednesday and going over escapes and positions with maybe a few light rolls, try and avoid rolling with some of the heavier crazier people in the run up to a competition, the last thing you want is someone messing you up with a week to go!
Intense exercise increases the stress hormone cortisol, which can decrease our immune system functioning, this is another reason to go easy the run up to the competition as you don't want to get a cold or,, dun dun dun the dreaded swine flu.
As alot of people are still cutting weight the week before competition your body probably isn't getting all the nutrients it needs which is another reason to take a good multivitamin.
Make sure you get plenty of sleep and rest maybe do some yoga or go get a sports massage, in my mind with a week to go I've trained as hard as I can so i like to give my body and mind a few days to chill so I'll have plenty of energy on the day.

Peace 4 now, i'll leave you with this Rickson Gracie clip

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Ladies open mat and lots of training

The ladies open mat in dartford was a great day, there was some amazing blue belts there who were really strong and pretty much killed me rolling but it was a good experience and made me realise i still need to work on armbar/triangle escapes before the Brighton comp. Hopefully going to ask Richard if we can host one at our club maybe a week after the grapplers showdown in August so will post when i know more.

Training has been pretty intense the last few weeks
modays bjj 8.30-10 @ Canton
Tuesdays bjj 8.30-10 @ BTT Slough
wed bjj 8.30-10 @ Canton
Thursday rest
Friday rest
Saturday bjj 12.30-2 @ caton 2.30-4 @ Sparta
Sunday bjj 12-2 @ BTT Slough

I run most days as I'm training Elliot on 3 days a week and will hopefully get some more clients soon!

In terms of nutrition my diet most days is
breakfast: oatmeal with fruit,
lunch: fish rice and veggies
pre training smoothie (frozen berries, banana, milk, some pine nuts or seeds to get efa's)
Dinner: 2 scrambled eggs and 2 veggie sausages or soup with a pitta pocket or chicken salad

I snack on things like tesco cereal bars, fruit, nuts, activia yogurt, dark choc, oatcakes and low fat philly, if my diet is good 80% of the time I'm happy, Italian and Indian food are my weaknesses although I'm trying to chose the healthiest thing like chicken tikka instead of a curry with a creamy sauce and poppadoms instead of yummy nan bread.

I recently started taking a good multivitamin and have a couple of those fizzy vitamin c tablets and glucosamine sulphate religiously for about a week now and I notice the difference in my mood and energy levels. Late night training does mean I find it so hard to wake up in the morning but luckily for me I'm only working part time so unless temp work comes up i work mainly in the afternoons and evenings.

Last nights training was really good, warm up and drills as usual and then tolly taught us a take down and had us drill it for ages. He then put all of us smaller guys in the middle with 1 minute of trying to get the take down with 5 different people, some of the new guys slammed me a bit but i got revenge by sweeping them when we got to the floor haha. It was the smaller guys first so we got to rest while the bigger guys had their turn killing each other. I do admit i looked at the clock and it was already 5 past ten and I thought hmm don't think we'll be rolling tonight and for once i felt vaguely relieved as every muscle in my body felt pumped. My relief was short lived as tolly shouted everyone to get a drink and put in mouth guards. I can only remeber rolling with joe, didnt work for submission worked on escaping half gaurd and getting to mount. I'm pretty knackered today but i think alex wanted to go do the cross fit work out later so might be up for that after a nice hot bath!

some random pics, you can see a bit more of what our training area is like is easbourne at Canton martial arts

Saturday, 11 July 2009

Busy Times!

Well i am officially a graduate in sports science, well health and exercise science to be precise! I'm going to be pretty busy the next few weeks with the Brighton grab and pull comp on the 25th followed by graduation on the 29th then a quick trip to Scotland for my grandparents 50th wedding anniversary on the 30th to the 2nd and then and the London comp on the 8th August! I have been training allot for the upcoming competitions and feel a lot more prepared than the British open, I've been eating fairly healthy, apart from all the nice meals out with Alex and my mum and dad who are over visiting.

On the work front temping is going rubbish, I did a 3 hour shift at my Friends bar today but to be honest bar work kills me as I'm not 2 much of a people person and clumsy as hell, so I'm sure that it will be pretty short lived haha. I'm enjoying doing personal training with Elliot and if I get a few more clients then that would probably keep me in the money. The plan at the minute is still to head back to Bahrain in mid September to go back home and be able to hopefully save more money than I would here.

Ah well I'm looking forward to tomorrow, heading down to the open mat at dartford mma which will hopefully help improve my game for the comp! I'm also dragging my mum down with me to keep me company on the train and maybe persuade her to try some bjj haha

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Nutrition 101

Too keep my brain sharp and to write about some of the stuff thats interesting me atm here is a quick post on some basic nutrition for health, enjoy.

Carbohydrate: Humans have evolved having a sweet tooth (The history and evolution of the human diet is something I'm currently fixated with lol) and will often crave carbohydrates in their diet. While our ancestors would have snacked on fruits rich in natural sugars, the refinement and creation of simple sugar rich snacks has been linked with the increasing levels of obesity and metabolic disorders such as type 2 diabetes. The understanding that carbohydrate containing foods effect our blood sugar levels and can create cravings and mood/energy fluctuations has lead to the development and popularisation of low carbohydrate diets.

A low carbohydrate diet typically favoured by individuals who are trying to lose weight recommend consuming 20% or less total calorific intake from carbohydrates this equates to 20 to 60 g per day (to put this in perspective 30g of cheerios has around 30g of carbohydrates while a 180g baked potato has 55g)

Restricting carbohydrates is thought to facilitate weight loss as it limits the amount of glucose, the body's preferred energy source, meaning that stored fat will be used in its place, this is the same philosophy many people employ when working out in the morning on an empty stomach. I would not advice this diet to be used by any one participating in Brazilian jiujitsu for more than 3 hours a week unless they are particularly overweight (will post more on weight status next post). Instead it is wiser to obtain 50-65% of daily energy intake from whole grain carbohydrates including brown rice and pasta, pulses and beans, rye bread, 3 servings of fruit and 4 servings of vegetables while limiting the amount of processed sugar rich snacks and drinks.

If your still not convinced that low carb diets can be detrimental to training over a long time period read

Fat: Fat gets a bad reputation as 1g provides 9kcal, double that of carbohydrate and protein and so it is often linked with weight gain. However it is important to understand that there are 2 different types of fat distinguished by their differing chemical properties, known as saturated and unsaturated fat. Saturated fat is solid at room temperature and found in diary products, snacks like cakes, chocolate, crisps and pastry and the fat that can be seen on cuts of red meat. Many of us consume too much of this type of fat (high amounts in take away food, crisps chocolate full fat dairy and red meat) which can have detrimental effects on our cholesterol and lipid profile.

see for more info on the saturated fat content of foods

Unsaturated fats (Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats) are typically found in vegetable oils and spreads and are liquid at room temperature, these provide the essential fatty acids omega 3 and 6 that our body can not synthesis and therefore must be obtained through diet. A diet that provides the recommended amount of essential fatty acids is particularly important for anyone participating in bjj as it also helps with joint health.

The recommend intake of fat is less than 35% of total daily calories for total fat intake and less than 15% for saturated fat intake. For example if you are consuming 2000kcal a day then around 76g of fat or 684kcals. However it would be beneficial if aiming to lose weight or improve health to consume lower levels particularly of saturated fat.

Protien: Protein is used for growth and repair of the body cells, it is composed of amino acids. For a food to be a high quality or complete source of protein it must contain 9 essential amino acids in the right proportions. The recommended dietary intake of protein for is 0.8g per kilogram of body weight which can be obtained by eating by 2-3 servings of meat (or vegetarian meat alternative) daily which provide about 45 to 65 grams of protein.

Most of us training will probably be consuming higher levels of protein than this to aid in recovery and muscle growth, while this is a sensible approach as Protein ingestion before or after exercise clearly results in positive muscle anabolism (growth) it should be noted that more than 10g of protein will most likely be oxidised for energy and not used for muscle building.
For more detailed info on optimum protein intake read

So to put all that into context... The for the average person consuming 2000kcal a day a general guideline would be as follows
protein: 15-25%
carbohydrates 50-65%
fat 20-35%

Nutrition is a very individual thing and is infulenced by weight, age, gender, size, health and training status. My next nutrition post will talk more about the nutritional requirements of those of us training in bjj whether it be in the short term i.e before tonights training session, or more long term i.e. in the run up to next months competition.

Wednesday, 1 July 2009

300 tap class

Ohhh i forgot to mention that tonight we had a special 2 hour long class with about 20 of us where 3 people started off at the middle and had to tap as many people as possible so that we eventually got 300 taps in a class. I was in the light weight group which consisted of me sophie joe and Naz. I am propbably the heaviest and slightly more experianced which lead to me rolling for about 40 minutes before Tolly realised that we hadnt even got 100 taps yet so we switched to 2 minute rolls then evenutally 1 minute rolls. It took about 2 hours to finish and i lost about 1.5kg even after downing about 3 bottles of water! The whole thing was in aid of raising money to that the gym can get a bit of a revamp and maybe a ring for the thai boxing lot so hopfully that will go well. I am now officially cream crackered so i'm off to scoff some tuna and then go to sleep. Boring temp work in the a.m followed by mma later at night. The promised nutrition post will come soon! Untill then i suggest reading some of blogs on my list good posts about British open from black cat and meerkatsu

MMA gina and cyborg

I was talking to my coach today about maybe doing an amature mma fight in the near future, this of cource lead to me googling and discovering the following clips. The first is of cyborg choking out a reporter and the second is gina Carano on sports science both feature the rear naked choke a move that untill recently I never used but worked for me at the last competition, hoping mine gets as bad ass as theres soon!

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Brazilian jiujitsu for women

While at each competition I go to I see more and more female competitors they are still a pretty small group in comparison to the number of guys there. When I think back to my first experience of Brazilian jujitsu I guess it was a bit daunting soo i thought I would write a little guide for any girls thinking about or new to the sport.

1) Attire: Brazilian jiujitsui (BJJ) is a martial art that involves allot of grappling or wrestling (rolling in bjj terms). When you arrive to your first class you may not have a gi handy or want to commit to buying one as they can be quite expensive. Its important to wear big pants (underwear knickers lol) or cycling shorts 1)because less substantial pants are most likely going to get pretty uncomfortable and 2) you don't want any one to see your butt if your gi pants or shorts fall down! The same goes for your top half try and wear a decent sports bra and a rash guard style top.

The best place to buy rash guards is online, ebay have loads if your on a budget with prices starting from about 8 quid, while websites such as caged steel do some more expensive ones specifically for grappling and mixed martial arts. I really like the look of some of the stuff on and might order some if i ever have money again! Primark and sports world are great stockists of pants and cheap leggings to wear under your gi or shorts. For anyone looking to buy a gi for the first time I've heard that feral gi (search for it on ebay) are good quality and relativly cheap (38 quid)

2) Health and hygiene: Theres no denying it after a training session of brazilian jiujitsu be it your first class or just a particularly intense one, you are bound to feel short term muscle fatigue over the next few days. I find that the best way to combat this is with proper nutrition, some good supplements and a nice muscle rub cream. A couple of hours before training I try to eat a meal with a good amount of complex carbohydrates to give me plenty of energy for training. While some people like to cut carbs I find i always need a little immediately after training to replenish glycogen stores, maybe half a carb drink or some wholewheat toast with peanut butter and either a protein shake or a salad with chicken or fish. this is just what works for me atm as I'm not cutting weight. For anyone interested in learning more about nutrition watch this space will post a more detailed ramble about it soon. I get loads of bruises training, taking vitamin C supplement and using Arnica cream can reduce the look of bruises although this isn't something that really bothers me 2 much.

When considering long term health, the addition of supplements including gluscosamine sulphate or fish oils containing omega 3 and 6 to keep your joints healthy is important, as chronic over-use injuries can sometimes occur through excessive training. Your hair will probably start to suffer after a while so invest in some good conditioner and snag free hairbands to avoid it getting damaged, a multivitamin can also help to combat damage. (this is probably the most girly thing i will ever admit to being concerned about but hey I like my hair)
Its a good idea to have a stock of tiger balm, deep heat, pain killers, plasters, bandages, ice packs-in essence a first aid box- just in case.

Hygiene: try and ensure yourself and your gi are clean when training as this helps to prevent build up and spreading of germs and bacteria! I would recommend using an antibacterial body wash or wipes immediatley after training. I recently got an infected fingernail from not taking enough care so now will be stocking up on that dry antibacterial handwash stuff as it is probablly one of the lesser gross things you can get and it killed, when I was training in thailand some people were getting ringworm and other nasties so make sure and keep clean!!!

On that note, theres no such thing as nice nails after you've been training for a while (i still paint mine from time to time but they always get trashed in training) the best thing to do is keep the short otherwise they will break or even more painful get bent back, theres also the risk of scratching people.

These are all things that I've learnt while training bjj for the last year, as there is often a lack of girls training there is hardly ever anyone to offer advice to girls just starting out. While i guess that it maybe a bit embarrassing for some guys to point out, In the worlds of ray elbe my first grappling coach - yeah you can wear your thai shorts to train but make sure your not wearing no granny panties! -

Bjj is a great way to get fit, loose weight, and in my opinion the best martial art for females to learn. I have only been training about a year and met so many great people, and still get as excited about learning a new technique or pulling off a submission as I did in my first class, in fact i probably get more obsessed with the sport each class. So despite the some what scary first impression you may get of a room full of men grunting and rolling around on the floor, give it a go and stick with it and you'll be glad you did!

Monday, 22 June 2009

British open 2009

This weekend me, alex, lee, pete and Sophie travelled up to Birmingham from ebo to compete in the British open. We were part of the BTT/pedro bessa team and have been training from about September. I didn't really feel ready for this competition but as its the biggest competition in the UK i decided to man up so to speak and go for it. At 3.30 my alarm started blaring girls aloud waking me from my 3 hours of sleep, there was just about enough time to scoff some cereal, throw on my juicy tracky and walk round to lee's. The drive up wasn't too bad i managed to nap for about an hour and listen to my jujitsu play list on my ipod which consists of a lot of loud pumped up music and then we were there- half an hour before the place actually opened but better early than late! (Tolly would have been horrified at our tres uncool early arrival time)

I'm starting to recognise most of the girls on the competition scene. My first fight was against Emma leavy she pulled guard and i passed and went to side control don't remember much from it but i won on points. My second fight was against lauren reed who i had fought before at the Bristol open. I really enjoyed this match, i think we are pretty well matched strength wise, she got me with a kul sweep but I won in the end with a rear naked choke. Just saw on efn that they have the results wrong grrrr I'm listed as joint bronze as Raquel what cheek haha. We also discovered some of the medals were spelt wrong (not mine luckily but Alex's was). Sophie did really well beating her first opponent Camilla parker, her next fight against Megan mcgreggor started off really well with soph getting an awesome take down but unfortunately got caught out with a guillotine choke.

The rest of the guys did well with alex winning gold in white belt light weight and pete coming second in white belt heavy category. Lee did well too for his first competition but unfortunatly got arm bared with like 2 seconds to go! Despite not feeling 100% i'm glad I went to this competition, I think that its the best way to test out the moves you remember and see what you need to work on. Theres about a month before the next grab and pull tournament and I'm looking forward to getting back to training properlly. Think me alex tolly and lee are going up to slough to train at btt which will be good.

Saving for thailand is going slooowly temping agency is coming up with minimum wage job after job but fingers crossed!

Friday, 5 June 2009

Beach work out and the week before British Open

Well I have to say that the last few weeks havn't involved much training. First of all I had the last of my university deadlines to get in and then I got this mole on my arm which had to be removed so,,, while I was waiting for my surgery I wasn't allowed to train and now I have stitches so it will still be another week until I can get back to training properly which sucks! I was stuck in a bit of a self pity rut until last night when me and alex watched legacy, the film about renzo gracie (pic of me at RGA new york), and I made a promise to my self that I would drag my lazy ass down to the beach to do some cardio and strength work to keep myself motivated.

Beach work out! Brighton is a pebbly beach and 2 minutes away from where we live its generally quiet. I was in a good mood when I woke up to see that the sun had disappeared and it was a grey overcast day haha I'm not really a sun lover as i get burnt within 20 minutes of being outside! started off my jogging to the beach and doing a few laps weaving between the wooden posts. I decided I would sprint a length, run round the posts and then chose 4 exercises to do when I got back round sprint run 50 crunches " "50 sit ups " "50 leg raises " "50 V sit ups 2 minutes break " "50 squats " "50 side kicks " "lunges (just along the same length i sprinted) 2 minutes break

After this my legs were kinda dead so I just did 30 triceps dips and push ups on this wooden log and some shadow boxing but I'm going to try and buid it up so I can keep running more. It did prove to be a good workout though The British open is only a week away, I think I'm registered to fight in the under 64 cater gory which should be fine I weighed 61.4 in the morning yesterday so as long as i eat well this week and keep up with cardio should be fine. I'm kinda nervous about this just becasue I havnt been able to train properly with these stitches in, ah well I love competitions so will just have to hope I remember everything and havnt lost too much strength!

Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Carmen jenke seminar, irish shenangins and catfight gear gi

Well, i certainly can't complain of boredom these last few weeks! Last weekend I went up to London to attend the first woman's only bjj seminar in the Uk. My fear of Sunday trains was eased a bit as I sped from surbiton to London Victoria, then on the underground to st pancreas (hugest train station ever!!!) then to mill hill Broadway. Despite my best attempts to get there on time,,, I was as usual running a bit late so decided to nip into the toilet on the train and change into my gi which did cause a few people to do a double take as I emerged from the loo wearing my blue koral gi tucked into my uggs hehe. This turned out to be a good move, as I was getting off the train I felt someone tap on my shoulder and ask weather I was going to a Brazilian jiu jiutsu seminar! what are the odds haha this resulted in getting a lift to RGA mill hill meaning I wasn't too late. The seminar its self was very interesting it started with lots of drills, a few of which I hadn't seen before and found quite hard to get the hang of! We then paired up and drilled a few things

1) collar choke from guard- this involved breaking our partners posture and waiting for them to pull up allowing the choke to be put on really easily before the person realised what was going on I liked this move as it was quite simple and effective and i found that a bit of extra hip movement using your opponents movement to swing round made it come on even quicker

2) A couple of guard passes - start by holding partners hips or their gi lapel and pushing into their sternum, then contrary to what I usually do which is placing my knee into my opponents tailbone Carmen recommended that to keep your base it was better to keep your knee more to the side which i think worked just as well, to pass we either under hooked the leg or stepped over with our knee, which i usually prefer. After we passed we drilled a kimora from side control which I usually find hard to get but Carmen showed us that it was easier to wait for you opponent to make the move and set up the grip in preparation for when they eventually try to push you off of them, I like to use my face sometimes to help pin the arm down lol

3) A sweep from half guard which worked by reaching round and holding your opponents foot and knee and another one I had learnt a few weeks ago with Ze which I will need to research more as I'm not sure on how best to describe it

4) an open guard sweep that I learned ages ago in New york which starts by holding the collar and the sleeve with your foot on their hip then switching grip to the sleeve and the ankle to sweep them you then pull the ankle and push their hip with your foot

we then rolled for about 30 mins, I was pleased at how I rolled, what I lack in strength and size in comparison with a couple of the girls I managed to keep my cool and pull of a couple of submissions including the gi choke we had learned that day, later this reminded me of Ray in Thailand yelling move of the day!!! whenever anyone managed to pull of the technique we had been working on. All in all the day was really good it was great to see so many girls on the mat at once! I left feeling extra motivated which paid off in training on Monday as I felt my game was just that more redefined.

training that week involved...
BJJ on Monday: I went over the moves we had learned in the seminar with Sophie and the new girl then we rolled most of the class
mma on Tuesday: brought my friend Anna down to train as shes a black belt in taikwondo and i wanted to work on some stand up and no gi stuff despite I kick to the ribs that made me think I was going to be sick sparing involved me taking Anna down and avoiding being punched to much.
Wednesday: went boxing with the girls at uni while not the most hard core class it is a good work out and only 2 quid a class. after boxing went to bjj but really wasn't in the mood for it haha Richard made me n soph roll no gi because we might be doing the European competition in grapple and strike, I was feeling pretty crappy after but it was still a fun day of training.

Then another weekend rolled around, as my mum was over from the Uk visiting she decided me her and my brother would spend the weekend in ireland seeing some friends which was a really nice break even though there was no training involved! we did however watch some motor cross, have some nice dinners and watch our friend wilsons band down at the pub which made for a really good break. Note to self that cinimon glod flecked goldshlager stuff is dam tasty but = god awful hangover see picture below for the extent of my hungover trek back home

Got a couple more essays to be getting on with unfortunatley and am also broke as a joke as i ordered a new gi from Ah well a kul new gi is worth eating soup the rest of the month and after all the fried breakfasts and chocolate of late im sure my tummy will be thanking me. Ebayed loads of old crap so should be all good.

Friday, 8 May 2009

Sunday trains grrrr

Why is it that every time I need to go somewhere its on a Sunday meaning that there will be bus replacement services,, diversions,, and general chaos mehhh I can either leave from eastbourne on Sunday to get to the seminar which will take 2 and a half hours orrr i can go up to Hampton with my mum on Saturday dump all my stuff off for Ireland (visiting some friends over there next weekend) and then go from Hampton to mill hill on Sunday which will also take about 2 hours and involves the dreaded underground. Either way I will most likely be in a hella bad mood by the time I get there, at least a meeting with fellow bjj peeps and learning some kul moves from Carmen will cheer me up!

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Green gym in Eastbourne

Finally got my lazy ass back to training! It was really fun tonight we had a little club tournament which involved me refusing to tap to an arm bar by Paul rolling out of it and then Tolly stopping the match, I suppose sensing I was in a particularly stubborn mood.

Its funny I remember Alex telling me about a match with helio gracie where even after he had broken his arm he didn't tap, at the time I remember saying how stupid, and that they should tap if they knew their arm was going to break after all that would mean sitting out of training while waiting to recover blah blah. A few months later after competing in my first competition and alot more training sessions and i completely get it,,, although usually in training I wouldn't be so tenacious, but tonight I really did not want to tap (also i was pretty sure Paul wouldn't break my arm lol)

Also, there was a girl who came to check out the class and is going to come on Monday which means for a small club we will hopefully have 3 girls training bjj, I would like to organise some sort of event maybe a free taster class for girls only, will have to see what Tolly thinks.

watching cage gladiators on TV at the moment and our friend David lee is fighting haha so funny seeing people i know on tv, I wana be on tv!!! watching the girls mma fight and its making me wanna train harder, even when i look in the mirror when we're all lined up at training i look so scrawny, need to get to the gym i think.

There is something to be said though for increasing strength through training bjj since i started I have lost a lot of body fat and gained much more upper body strength, I can do about 25 push ups compared to half of a push when i started 8 months ago.

To my excitement they have a green gym in our park now I was walking to the shops the other day and saw someone on this metal cross trainer haha seeing as I am too broke for the gym at the minute this looked like a fun way to do some extra training now I have more free time.

some pics of alex anmd my mum messing around in the outside gym

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

competitions I would go to if I wasnt a broke student and some I will be doing anyways

While I am happy doing all the competitions I can get to in the united kingdom (well the more southern parts of the uk) I keep seeing loads of competitions that I would want to do if i had, say my own privet jet or at least a bank account with more than 100 quid in it.

1) Grapple Girls Women’s Open 2009: they have a tournament on the 22nd of august followed by a grappeling camp fromm the 23-29th august and I really want to gooooo! being that august is quite far away i may potentially have the disapline to save up for plane tickets and could possibly find someone to say with lol watch this space

2)Alliance BJJ Mundial Championships Training Camp May 26 - June 2 in Georgia: Romero “Jacare” Cavalcanti is the head coach, this is basically a camp to prepare for the world bjj tournament and involves 2 classes a day for a week allong with conditioning classes, is it lame that this sounds better than a boring beach holiday somewhere to me?!

3) 2009 BJJ World Championships June 4-7 in California: Need I say more,,, I would love to go to this tournament perhaps if I do well in all the Uk tournaments I would have the guts to go lol

Some competitions I will be more likley to make it to!!!

1) may 23rd an 24rth U.M.A. International Open Groundfighting & Grappling Championships not stricktly a bjj comp but i would like to get more experiance in no gi

1) June 21 BJJ British Open Cocks Moor Woods Leisure Centre
Alcester Rd South
Birmingham, West Midlands, B14 6ER

I also think there will be summer devisions of the Bristol and grab and pull tournaments and,,, if anyone knows of any good comps in the uk or close by feel free to let me know want to compeate as much as possible over this summer while I have the free time :-)

Monday, 4 May 2009

The week dissertation was finally compleated! Womans only seminar!

Well its finally over! I handed my dissertation in on Friday wooooo 60 pages, 4 months and a lot of lost hours of sleep and mega huge diet red bulls and its done! I feel almost euphoric now that its over, I still have some essays to hand in but that's pretty much me finished university! Which also means I have more time to train (when not job hunting that is) As it was bank holiday weekend and I was out and about till pretty late then up early to help someone with their physio dissertation, I am almost relieved that the dojo is closed today haha don't want to go back to training for the first time in two weeks feeling all tired and decrepit soo i think will do some nice relaxing yoga tonight and catch up with my sleep and go down to zt tomorrow to check out the woman's/beginners class.

I was talking to Reza and he was telling me of the success our Bahrain club had at the world pro jiu-jitsu tournament in Abu dhabi getting 2 bronze medals and one silver! he even met ze there as he was over refing some of the matches.

I'm not too sure when I will next be compeating, was a bit disapointed we were not able to make it to the essex open as it was on a sunday and the trains were skrewed up as usual although I hadnt been able to train much the last month any ways with all my uni work.
I am hoping to make it up to the womans only seminar with There will be a women only BJJ seminar by Brown Belt Carmen Janke

Date: Sunday 10th May from 12-3pm
Location: RGA Mill Hill.
Cost £20

I will post more info on the details of this when I find out more but if anyone reads this and knows any females who are interested let them know please, the more people there the better!!!

For anyone that compeated in the grab and pull09 in brighton theres loads of videos from it at one of mine was up there was good to analyse my game a bit althoguh frustrating in some parts when I could have maybe finished the match a bit sooner, for some reason I am just too calm when i'm fightingm which in some ways is a good thing as I dont rush and make silly mistakes but I still think I need to try and be a bit more aggressive sometimes lol

Monday, 27 April 2009

I want a cat fight gear gi!!! I just saw on gringa bjj's blog that a website called make the most amazing custom gi's for girls I want one lol i emailed them to see if they ship to uk so fingers crossed my only dilema now is which one I want they are all so nice! At the min I have a blue coral gi which is ok for competitions its a size A1 and still a bit too big though, I still need to invest in some decent shorts for under my gi, I was practicing passing guard the other day and stood up and my gi pants were half way down luckily everyone was too caught up in rolling to notice but some decent shorts are needed to replace my rubish primarket leggings lol. That is all bak to stats "sigh"

Saturday, 25 April 2009

Ze Marcello seminar

Had a fun weekend of training, Ze Marcello came down and taught a seminar, we worked on loads of sweeps from half guard which was good as I tend to just try and get back into guard from there so I'm going to practice lots of sweeps in the next few weeks! After we all went out for some food and then Alex went out with Tolly and co but I was still aching from Thai so I cocooned myself in our massive bean bag and watched Britain's got talent and south park marathons, Cartman never fails to amuse me ha. Haven't wrote in a while because I have been swamped with my dissertation! scientific research is a pain in the butt I'm meant to be doing my results now but statistics make me sooo enraged and I had to miss training tonight to get get all my graphs and tests done grrrr. I always feel bad when I miss training but at least after the first of May I will have a lot more time I think my new training schedule will look something like this

Monday - yoga 10-11 Bjj 8-9.30
Tuesday - circuit training/no gi
wednesday - Bjj 7-8.30
thursday - muay thai
Friday - muay thai
saturday - Bjj 1230-2 at canton then 2.30-4 at sparta
sundays - bjj at btt in slough/ yoga and rest

now its getting sunny I sometimes have the odd run along the seafront this schedule will probably last about a month of summer hols unless i get the job I wanted which was working at a summer camp as a physical activity co-coordinator although I need to get my CV done asap! I think I will head back to Bahrain for a week to hand my CV in to all the clinics there and see what kind of opportunities there are and if I need any further qualifications. I still am unsure about the plans for next year its so confusing!!! Also got more competitions to train for over summer, although weight isn't such an issue for females in BJJ i'm still trying to keep mine at under 64kg as I seem to be doing well in that weight category in the last two competitions. The next comp our club is doing is at ZT fight skool in Brighton, they are trying to find me a competitor but I think its unlikely,,, they have started doing girls classes there which I want to check out on Tuesdays depending on how much work I get done tonight/tomorrow I will go check it out I think.