The journey of an aspiring fighter #39

Published On November 10, 2013 | By Helen Harper | Blog

Having expected this week to go really slowly, in fact it’s flown by – AGAIN! Only 6 weeks left on this beautiful island before I am back to reality for 2 months. This is not all bad, I can’t wait to see my family and catch up with my friends in the UK. But for now, I have 6 weeks to make the most of paradise and enjoy it to it’s full extent!

I hadn’t planed to train at all this week, however Olavo mentioned that I could try some of the technique in Jiu Jitsu on Wednesday, so obviously I jumped at the chance. I felt good during the technique section of the class so tried a very slow roll with Sebastian. I didn’t feel quite 100% but I am not sure how much of that was paranoia and how much was a real dizziness, so I stopped anyway just in case. I thought about it for a while after and although I felt disappointed with myself for stopping it was actually the mature thing to do so I must be growing up or something?!
I went for a little run in the morning before work on both Wednesday and Thursday and felt fine so I think it was more a paranoia than anything else. I went to grappling class on Thursday evening with Anthony and managed the entire class, so I was super happy!! The grappling technique was a pass from half guard, which it took a long while for me to get but actually ended up using it whilst rolling so that made me even happier.
My favourite comment from a guy I rolled with on Thursday was, “Do you do BJJ or something??” Girls tapping guys: Goodbye ego!

Friday morning I ran again, only a short 2 miler again, but it all adds up. A morning run always sets up my day nicely – makes you feel virtuous before the day has even really begun! Work has been pretty stressful lately because we are under-staffed, so the fact that I am back in training has eased that stress a great deal. After Friday’s work was over I couldn’t wait to get to Jiu Jitsu, and we had a visiting black belt called Martyn who is actually from Manchester in England to teach us. We looked at a series of Kimora sweep and submission options. I had never really done any of the techniques Martyn taught us, so found it really fascinating and can’t wait to drill them again on Monday – and even try and input them into my game (especially the fourth one!)
1. Half guard -> Kimora
2. Half guard -> Kimora fails -> grab your opponents belt, tuck your head into their hip and sweep them over the top of your body
3. Half guard -> Kimora fails -> let your opponent pass your guard -> north south position but still holding the Kimora grip -> roll your opponent over
4. Half guard -> Kimora fails -> let your opponent pass your guard -> come all the way round, whilst still holding the Kimora grip, to a right angle -> put your knee into their hip and swing your other leg over for the arm bar
5. Half guard -> Kimora fails -> put your outside foot inside your opponents knee -> sweep from there
Awesome class. Thank you Martyn!!

I had thought originally that I wouldn’t be able to do Muay Thai on Saturday morning because of the concussion, but it seemed that I was feeling good by the end of Friday so I thought I would test myself out on Saturday morning, knowing that I could stop if I needed to at any time. I ended up doing the full class, didn’t get any headaches and actually felt amazing by the end of it – I can’t even put into words how happy that made me! If the past 3 weeks has taught me anything, it’s how much I appreciate being able to train and fight, and how much effect it really has on my life, my mood and even my interaction with other people. I am a much happier person when I am in training, even though training is really hard sometimes too.

We now have a new session for Saturday afternoons, purely for sponsored fighters. It’s basically a strength and conditioning circuit specifically aimed at fight training, including kettlebells, battle ropes, pad work and both tire flipping and hammers. We end it with stair sprints and jumps which was probably the hardest part for me with my miniature legs! This week there was four of us doing the circuit; Rob, Ian, Aden and myself along with Brad (injured so couldn’t take part, but still came along to be part of the team) and Boyd who ran the circuit and took us on the pad work section. I felt really unfit, probably more because of the previous three weeks off than anything else but I know this will improve the more we go through the circuit.

A distinct lack of photo’s from this week I am afraid – just the one of my friend Nick and I having a Sunday morning coffee! Next week, more training and more photos.


Next week is going to be good, starting strong and ending stronger! To quote my mother: “If it’s easy everyone would be doing it, nothing easy is worth doing”


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About The Author

English Mixed Martial Artist fighting out of Andy Roberts BJJ and Legacy BJJ with a pro record of 4-1.

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