Friday, September 26, 2014

Weekly Training Report - September 15th-21st

Monday: 3.3 miles (7:22)
We worked armbars from the guard with a few different grip setups and getting a high guard with our leg on top of the shoulder of the arm we were attacking.  We progressed from there if our opponent stands and starts stacking us to reach for the far leg, pivot underneath and knocking our opponent over with the armbar still on.

Tuesday:  No running

Wednesday:  3.6 miles (7:06)
Ran a short workout in the morning, 3 x 500m, paces were 5:49, 5:35, 5:40 with 2:30 jog between intervals.

Thursday: 4.1 miles (7:13)
We worked some sweeps from guard when our opponent stands up.  Basic setup was to get the cross sleeve grip, underhook their near leg (Hooking their leg at our elbow, not using our forearm), and pulling the leg while extending our hips.  Then, if they countered, we worked a transition to an omoplata from there to a sweep.

Friday: 5.2 miles (7:27)

Saturday: 5 miles (7:03)

Sunday: 17.5 miles (7:59)
My longest run since January.  It went pretty good, but I put it off until night time and it was 80 degrees and 80% humidity.

Weekly total: 38.7 miles
Pretty decent week for me in terms of mileage, getting in a long run and a little bit of a work out.  I need to stay consistent with my long runs in the coming weeks.  And start to add a fast finish to everyone other one.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Weekly Training Report - September 8th-14th

Monday:  4.1 miles (7:24)
In standup, we worked on an arm drag to some different takedowns: double leg, single leg, and taking the back.  On the ground, we worked on our standard back defense.  Protecting your neck, bridge up onto your opponent, and move to the opposite side of the choking arm.

Tuesday:  No running

Wednesday:  No running

Thursday: 4 miles (7:14)
We worked the same takedown we've been working all week.  Then, on the ground we worked some attacks and back takes from technical mount.  And I got my first stripe on my blue belt!

Friday: 3.3 miles (7:29)
Did nogi today, at first it was just me.  But, then Anthony (my first instructor at Gracie Barra) and Jeremy York showed up.  We just did some light rolling.  It was fun to get ragdolled by those two guys for an hour.

Saturday: 2.4 miles (8:01); 3.1 miles (5:47)
Ran the Rock 'n Run  5K this morning.  I finished 1st in my age group and 15th overall with a time of 18:05.  That's my second best 5K ever, and so close to breaking 18 minutes for just the second time.  Race report to come later.

Sunday:   No running

Weekly total: 16.9 miles
Wow, didn't even make it to 20 miles this week.  I was feeling real lazy on Sunday.  My jiu jitsu training went well this week though.  And, I ran a pretty good race on Saturday, pacing was a little off... but I'm happy with my time.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Rock n' Run 5K Race Report

This past Saturday was the Rock n' Run 5K in Casselberry.  The second race in the Track Shack Race Series.  It's been a month since the first race, but it hasn't cooled off much at all yet.  And, my training has been pretty spotty this whole summer, so I wasn't expecting anything earth shattering.

I haven't been running a whole lot of workouts.  But, I figured my race strategy would be to try to go out at ~5:30 and hold that as long as I could.  That would give me about a 45 second PR and I haven't run any workouts that indicated I should be able to hold this pace.  So, it sounded like a good plan!  At least I would challenge myself.

The Rock n' Run is a fun race around the "scenic" Casselberry golf course.  Ok, it's not the best looking golf course out there.  But, the race route was pretty much flat, so it had that going for it.  Also, it was this race, two years ago, where I broke 20 minutes in a 5K for the first time!

There were a couple bands out on the course.  My bib came with a couple of rip off tags with band names on them so I could vote for my favorite band.  I honestly don't remember any of the band names or the songs they were singing.

I do remember turning left, with about 1/3 mile left to go, a band on the corner and the lead singer yelling out "This guy is going to give me a high five".  So, I ran over and gave him a high five, probably the highlight of his day.  He's just lucky I didn't throw up on him.  It was this guy, I found him on Track Shack's facebook page:

Apparently, he's a high five whore.  I thought we had something special.  Oh well, back to the race.

So, the first mile went according to plan.  I went through the first mile in 5:35.  The only problem is I was really hurting already and I had two more miles to go!  Gah!

I tried to keep the same pace for the second mile, but every time I looked down at my Garmin I was going slower.  First it was 5:40, then 5:43, then 5:47.  I stopped looking at my watch.  I ended up going through the second mile in 5:51.  The second mile is usually when I slow down the most during a race, and the same think happened during this one.  It's weird too, because the second mile is when I pass the most people.  I guess there's a silver lining there.  I'm slowing down, but not as much as a lot of the people in front of me.

The last mile, I just tried to hang on.  I know I said the course was flat, mostly flat, but it seemed like the last mile was all up hill.  I slowed down even more on the last mile with a 5:57.

And then it was a slight right and the pain was over!  I finished in 18:05, 15th overall.  That's my second fastest 5K ever, not too bad.  It would have been nice to break 18 minutes for the second time.  But, that will have to wait until 2015.  The next race in the race series is the UCF 5 miler in October.  No more 5Ks scheduled for this year.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Weekly Training Report - September 1st-7th

Monday:  No running

Tuesday:  No running

Wednesday: 9.0 miles (8:00)

Thursday: 4.6 miles (7:11)
Interval workout, 5 x 500m with 500m jog in between sets.  Averages ~5:45 pace on the intervals.

Friday: 4.4 miles (7:23)

Saturday: 5.8 miles (6:57)
Tempo run, 10 minute warm up, 20 minutes at T pace (6:20), 10 minute cool down

Sunday:  15.5 miles (7:47)
With my marathon less than 12 weeks away, I need to get some long runs in.  I wanted to do 20 miles, but this is still a pretty good long run for me.  It's the longest I've run in a couple of months.  I probably would have injured myself if I tried to do 20 miles without working up to it.

Weekly total: 39.2 miles
I had two pretty good workouts this week and a long run.  I was just a little lazy at the beginning of the week.  I also went to Jiu Jitsu 4 times during the week.  I didn't jot anything down though so I don't remember what we worked on.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

2014 FFBJJ State Championships Recap

The FFBJJ State Championships were held a week ago, this past Saturday in Coral Springs.  I competed in this tournament last year as a white belt.  It was my first Jiu Jitsu tournament and I lost my first match.  I feel like I've learned a lot in a year, so it was time to test myself again.  This time, I competed for the first time as a blue belt.

I competed as a lightweight, Master 2, blue belt.  Lightweight meant I had to weigh in at 168 with my gi on right before my matches.  Master 2 means I'm pretty old.  I was pretty much right on weight throughout the last week before the tournament.  I woke up and weighed in at 163, a little high considering that I wouldn't be weighing in until the middle of the afternoon.  So, I went for a run and afterwards I was at 160.  It turned out to not even being close, I weighed 165 with my gi on.

After my run, I showered, had some coffee and jumped in the rented minivan and headed to the gym to pick everyone up.  We had a full van, and a little over 3 hours of driving ahead of us.  But, road trips are always fun!

We got to the Coral Springs gymnasium a little after 9 am and stood in line to check in.  After getting in the gym, it was time to wait.  For those of you who have never competed, it's a lot of waiting around.  Usually the kids go first, starting around 10 am.  And there are usually a lot of kids!  Then white belts, blue belts, purple belts, brown belts and black belts.  Adult blue belts were scheduled to start around 2:30 pm.  The waiting is probably one of the toughest things about competitions.  Your nerves are already on edge, you can't eat much because you are trying to make weight, and gym stadium seating is really uncomfortable.  It's a great time!

Finally, adult blue belts were called up to the warm up area.  I rushed over there, but there was no need.  I think it was another hour of waiting around before my weight class.  At last, my name was called and I got my gi inspected and weighed in.  There were 3 other competitors in my age and weight class.  We walked over to mat 4 and it was time to go.

My opponent was Larry Puchta.  We walked out onto the mat, shook hands with the judge and each other and then our match began.  Usually, I pull guard almost immediately.  My stand up game is horrible, and I'd rather get to the ground with no points being scored.  But, it'd been awhile since I last competed and I wanted to try and go for a takedown if I got grips I wanted.  Unfortunately, Larry got 2 collar grips and jumped guard.  I tried to posture up in his guard, but he controlled my right arm over his centerline and swept me to mount almost immediately.  So, about 30 seconds into the match and I was down 6-0.  I was able to defend his attacks and slowly recover half guard, but he had the underhook and he was eventually able to get to quarter guard and then, finally, pass my guard again.  Now, I was down 9-0.  I worked and recovered half guard again, then I got a knee shield and collar and sleeve grip.  But, there were only about 30 seconds left and I couldn't mount a sweep attempt.  I lost the 5 minute match 9-0.

The flood of emotions after working so hard preparing for a tournament, driving 3 hours and losing your first match is hard to explain.  Immediately afterwards, I felt like I let my team and Instructors down.  It's a questioning about why I train so hard and end up not achieving the results I want on the competition mat.  Is it worth it?  Maybe I should take some time off?  It takes a little while to come out of that funk, but yes it's worth it.  Obviously, I want to win competition matches.  But, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is so much more than that.  It's the camaraderie that you build with your teammates during hours of training together in the gym.

It's the self discipline and quiet self confidence that training in any martial art brings.  Competition itself is testing yourself against other opponents and finding holes in your game.  But, above all that, I think Jiu Jitsu makes me a better person.  It's hard to explain why.  Jiu Jitsu definitely requires you to leave your ego at the door.  From the time that you first tie a white belt around your waist, you lose... a lot, you get smashed and you tap a lot.  As time passes, you gain experience and you tap less often.  But you still tap, there is still no room for ego.  

My teammate, Roberto, shared this quote from Theodore Roosevelt with me after losing that helped put things into perspective:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

 I lost that competition match, but I lost it while giving everything I had to win it.  In the end, my setbacks just feed my fire to keep training, keep trying to better myself.  I may never be an elite competitor, or win gold medals at Worlds.  But, that's not why I do Jiu Jitsu in the first place.

So, Monday morning, I was back on the mats training and eyeing the next tournament where I can test myself again!  Oss!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Weekly Training Report - August 25th-31st

Monday: 4.3 miles (7:58)

Tuesday: 5.0 miles (7:49)

Wednesday: 3.5 miles (7:36)

Thursday: 6.3 miles (7:46)

Friday: 8.65 miles (6:57)
Tempo run: 10 min warmup, 5 miles in 33 minutes, 15 min cooldown

Saturday: 5.3 miles (7:44)
Ran early in the morning before driving 3 hours to Coral Springs for the Florida BJJ State Championships.  Lost my first match in my weight class and then drove home.  I didn't get home until after 1 am, I was exhausted.

Sunday:  No running
I was so close to running every day this week.  But, I was so tired from yesterday.

Weekly total: 33.1 miles
I didn't meet my goals at the State Championships, but it was still a great experience with my Gracie Barra teammates.  And, it gives me something to focus on going forward.  The road trip was a lot of fun though!  My running this week was pretty good, I even got a pretty good workout in on Friday.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Weekly Training Report - August 18th-24th

Monday: 4.5 miles (7:53)
In BJJ, we worked some submissions from guard using the opponent's lapel.  I liked the control of their posture once I got the lapel out.  Conditioning after class, getting ready for States.  It was tough, but hopefully it'll pay off.

Tuesday: No running
Competition class tonight, a little warmup and then live rolling with 5 or 6 hard matches.  It was hard, but fun!

Wednesday: 6.0 miles (7:55)

Thursday: 4.7 miles (7:41)

Friday: 5.1 miles (7:53)

Saturday: 7.2 miles (7:47)
We worked on some escapes from side control in jiu jitsu.  Something I can always use a lot of because when I go against the better guys in our gym, I always end up on the bottom in side control.

Sunday: 9.0 miles (8:04)

Weekly total: 36.5 miles
No running workouts this week, just some easy running.
Went to jiu jitsu 6 times this week.  In full preparations for the Jiu Jitsu State Championship next Saturday!