Appreciating the BJJ Journey on Your Own Terms

It's been one week since I posted "Why I Don't Train a Billion Times a Week", and man oh man did you guys blow me away with your responses! More than one of your replies made me tear up, and your feedback has provided me with a deeper sense of appreciation for the sacrifices that are made in the sport; not only the sacrifices made so that one can train jiu jitsu, but also for the sacrifice of giving up training time, regardless of what your coaches and teammates may say, in the interest of spending time with family. I wanted to share some of the comments that were sent to me, because there is power in honesty. 

At first I noticed the themes of guilt, comparison and pressure among the comments below. Yet, once I took a second look, I noticed the common thread of wisdom that passes through the lines on the screen. You guys sent me messages displaying the strength to hold your ground in the interest of doing what is right for your family; messages of not getting stuck in someone else's definition of success; and, most importantly, people were willing to be vulnerable in telling their stories, so that others may find encouragement in being able to relate. 

Even though the BJJ community is spread across the globe, never doubt that there is someone, somewhere, who needs to hear what you have to say.

"Thank you for this post, it's exactly what I needed. I only train 2 times a week and I am not progressing as fast as some of the women that started the same time as me. I feel after a year of training I am sometimes taking one step forward and three steps back. Last night was one of those nights. I got so upset at myself for not remembering moves, getting caught in arm bars that I shouldn't, etc.... That I started crying while rolling with my instructor! I wish I could train more to catch up, but in reality I can't. And I have to know it's ok! And I will progress at my own speed, or not progress at all! Like you stated, just showing up sometimes is progress for me!"

My training went from everyday to now 3 times a week. I get pressure from my coach and even teammates. It’s like they forget that I am a single parent and work full time.

"Amen! I was a dedicated yogi before jits so I really identify with your words. When I can, I like to train every other day. But lately I've cut back and have allowed myself to skip class to attend parenting workshops and social events, and I'm back to training MMA because the class time works with my schedule. My goal is not a black belt before I'm 50. My goal is to kick ass and have fun and appreciate the journey on my own terms."

To me jiu jitsu is a part of life. Not my entire life. My daughter is currently going through some medical treatments that required me to quit work and school as well as jiu jitsu. I just started training again, but sometimes when I train, I think of my family and that I should be home with my daughter instead and getting closer to God. If my wife didn’t encourage me to go get my mind off things, I wouldn’t be training anymore.

"I too can only train twice a week because otherwise I'd only see my wife at weekends. BJJ can get so addictive you realize it's taking the place of other important things but if those things are really important you need to keep some perspective."

Progress should be something everyone should want but at their own pace. I’m personally enjoying the ride and think that is what matters the most.

so, what about your story? connect with us on facebook!