On the Jiu-Jitsu Binge and Purge Cycle

I got my sorry fat self to BJJ tonight.  I had a good time like I knew I would.  So why is it I go through these binge and purge cycles.  For a while I’m all fired up and I can’t get enough.  Then I hit the purge and I can’t get my self to go.  Oh there are other factors, sickness, family, life.  Regardless I still can find time even if I can’t go to class to watch my DVD’s or practice on my Submission Master Grappling Dummy.  But I don’t.  Now I’m just about finished purging and I’m moving toward the binge.

I’ve been wanting to pick up Ryan Hall’s "Back Attack" but I kept telling myself if I’m not going to go then why?  Surprisingly this has become the dangling carrot to start motivating me.  I think I’ll set it as a reward for myself.  If I make it through the entire month of February and get in at least two class a week I’ll buy it.  As you might remember I posted 3 Top Picks For Back Control Technique Instruction in which I picked Ryan’s DVD as the best.  I also set my sights on being the best from the back.

Jiu-Jitsu is Life and Life is Jiu-Jitsu

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Homecoming and Claustrophobia

Holidays, sickness, family, laziness, they have all kept me away from BJJ for the last month or so.  Tonight I went back and it was just like a homecoming.  I was warmly greeted by my BJJ family.  I realized how much I missed them and they let me know I was missed.  It was great.  I had a a interesting experiences in class that I can’t go without mentioning.  It was a very eventful night. 

I came face to face with my old nemesis claustrophobia.  Mark, our instructor, was demonstrating what looked liked a reversed scarf hold.  I was the dummy.  I started to get claustrophobia.  We weren’t moving.  He was just explaining.  I had a few minutes, which seemed like hours, to think about what I was feeling.  I knew I wasn’t in danger and that Mark would quickly let go if I tapped.  But there inside of me was the panic.  It wouldn’t go away no matter how I reasoned with it.  I felt irritated that it was so primal and that I couldn’t banish it with the obvious fact that I was in no immediate danger.   I controlled it.  I didn’t tap.  What I learned in that short while was I will always have fear and I can master it.  I had a internal battle and won.  The war rages on.

Jiu-Jitsu is Life and Life is Jiu-Jitsu

Kindle Jiu-Jitsu

I bought my wife a Kindle Wireless Reading Device from Amazon.com for Christmas.  It has become a big hit.  In fact I am getting a little jealous.  Its just about replaced me it feels like or at least that is what I kid my wife about.

I am thinking of getting myself one.  Of course what is the first thing I thought of “Jiu-Jitsu”.  What books could I get on my Kindle that were related to BJJ if I bought one.  A quick search at Amazon showed me 19 books.  Most were not in my collection and a few I thought might be worth having.  I was a little disappointed to see that some of the really important ones to me like Jiu-Jitsu University were not on the list.

This started me thinking how hard is it to create your own Kindle book?  It can’t be that hard.  What would I want to say that would be worth putting into a book?  I’d want to talk about BJJ of course.

Have any of my readers created a Kindle book and know where to start?  If so please share with us.  I’m sure a lot of us are interested.

Jiu-Jitsu is Life and Life is Jiu-Jitsu

New Years Jiu-Jitsu Goals for 2011

Oh, man!  2011 is here and its time to review my goals I set last year in my post “New Years Jiu-Jitsu Goals for 2010”.  I have been thinking about this post and avoiding it too.  I did better this year on my goals then in 2009.  This year I actually know what I succeeded and failed at.  LOL!


  1. Tap out some one I never have before in my school (I got Pat and Chris both purple belts)
  2. Compete in a tournament (I competed in the Scrap for the Skull Tournament)
  3. Read all my Jiu-Jitsu Books from cover to cover. Even the ones I buy new this year (I was close enough I am going to count this one)


  1. Increase my stamina (I gained weight and went backwards on this)
  2. Post a blog to www.jiujitsumap.com 5 days each week (I did ok for the first half of the year but then lost the habit)
  3. Get up early every morning and drill with my Submission Master Grappling Dummy.  (This was just plain wishful thinking.  I don’t get up in the morning)
  4. Increase my flexibility
  5. Watch all my Jiu-Jitsu DVDs.  Even the ones I buy new this year.
  6. Keep my BJJ Journal up to date.
  7. Know all the purple belt requirements.

30% is a “F”.  If I let that get me down then I’m done for.  I will roll over all the ones that I was unsuccessful in to 2011.  I’m not going to beat myself up about it.  After all I do BJJ for fun and exercise not for a living.

Jiu-Jitsu is Life and Life is Jiu-Jitsu

To My Good Friend Miles Vigil


I don’t know what caused you to take your life.  I don’t understand the pain you must have been feeling that left you without hope.  Oh, Miles how I wish I could have lent you some hope.  I accounted you a friend and brother in Jiu-Jitsu.  I am greaved that I didn’t communicate that more strongly.  Maybe then you would have realized that no matter how dark the night you weren’t alone.

I have so many questions, Miles.  You seemed the happiest I had know you to be.  What went wrong?  You seemed to have so much going for you.  Why did you want to throw it all away?

Miles, I will miss you.  I don’t mean just at class.  You were part of a small but close knit Jiu-Jitsu family.  It won’t be the same without you.  I will always remember your smile and the funny infomercial jokes you made.  I’ll look for you on the mat still.  I’ll be expecting you to come up the stairs in time for class.  I know you won’t be coming but it will feel like if I watch a little longer . . . you will.

Rest in peace, Miles.

Jiu-Jitsu is Life and Life is Jiu-Jitsu

Cry Havoc and let Loose the Dogs of War

I’m back in the fray!  Last night was the first time in a month that I got to practice.  It was great to be back with the guys and do BJJ.  What amazed me most is how things change.  What I mean is after missing a month I don’t know if they got that much better or me that rusty.  Its true I’m not that great at nogi.  But still I just didn’t seem to have the edge I did before I had to sit out.  Of course I’m stiff and sore this morning.  It was all to be expected.  I guess its time to work on pulling myself out of the Dip.

Wednesday, Sylvio Behring is going to have a seminar at One Hit MMA.  I’ve heard nothing but good about him and I plan to attend.  I’ll let you know how it goes.

Jiu-Jitsu is Life and Life is Jiu-Jitsu

Jiu-Jitsu Dreams or Dreaming of Jiu-Jitsu

sleeping-man-head I’ve missed a whole month now of Jiu-Jitsu because of sickness and family needs.  I’ve gone into withdrawals and now I’m starting to hallucinate.  Well, maybe not hallucinate.  I am dreaming about it.  Not every night mind you but more often then not.  The interesting thing is they are never sport Jiu-Jitsu type of dreams.  I don’t dream about being in class or at a tournament.  I dream about having to defend my self. In some of the crazier dream I’m special forces or an assassin.  What ever the dream it always comes down to hand-to-hand combat and I’m fighting it out with BJJ.  Of course the guy I’m fighting with in the dream doesn’t know BJJ.  I get in a sweet choke.  I wake up the next morning feeling thrilled until I realize I won’t be going to BJJ today and it was all a dream.  My Submission Master Grappling Dummy won’t tap out, ever!  I need a human to roll against.  I’ve watched all my videos, read blogs, and watched enough YouTube.com to last me a good while.  I can’t await to get back to class.  It will be rough for a few classes but I’ve sure missed it.

So what kind of Jiu-Jitsu dreams do you have?

Jiu-Jitsu is Life and Life is Jiu-Jitsu

Scrap For the Skull BJJ Tournament

Scrap For the Skull The Scrap For The Skull is a local tournament between my school, West Side Jiu-Jitsu and Foley’s MMA.  A crystal skull trophy is kept for the year by the winning school. If Foley’s isn’t our brother school then they are good friends and its great to have some local martial art school interaction.

You may have seen last year my post, No-Gi vs Gi Part 2.  I competed in the Scrap For The Skull last year.  It was my first tournament and first time doing nogi.  I lost but learned a lot.  This year I will be competing again despite missing a whole month before due to illness.  I will be in the year and above class this time.  I think even if I lose again I’ll be able to look back and see improvement.

Why am I tensing up just thinking about it?  What is it with tournaments that gives me anxiety?  I’m not going to lose money or really anything but some time.  I want to be a good representative of my school I guess.

Georgette of Georgette’s Jiu-Jitsu World had a good post “Tips for Calming Before and During Jiu-Jitsu Competition”.  I think I might add to that come on time but not early.  Last time I was early thinking I would stretch out.  It just made me more tense.

Wish me luck.  It is on Oct. 23th.

Jiu-Jitsu is Life and Life is Jiu-Jitsu

My Membership in the Pedro Sauer Assoc.

pedro-sauer-membership-card You might remember on 22-JUL-2010 I posted “Under The Table Belt Promotions in BJJ”.  In that post I talked about paying the $50 membership fee.  I did that on that very day.  Today, 05-OCT-2010 my membership packet arrived.  It took 2 1/2 months.  It came with the card I show here and two patches as pictured on the card.  Here is the letter:

“Hello Jason,

Thank you for your recent membership in the Pedro Sauer Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Association.  You will find in this welcome kit your personal ID card with your assigned association ID number.

This number is very important for future use in the Association in order to build your training history, track your progress, and increase your chances for merchandise discounts and free rewards.  When ordering from our online store, please be sure to include your ID number in the appropriate field.

We are very excited about the initiatives in development for the Association.  they will allow us to continue to be one of the premier Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu associations in the world.

Again, thank you for your membership.  You can stay up to date on Association news by visiting us online at our website PedroSauer.com.

Master Pedro Sauer
8th Degree Gracie Red/Black Belt

Mike Horihan
Association Director, PSBJJA, LLC.”

The letter wasn’t signed.  I corresponded with Mike through e-mail a couple of times asking, as time went by, when my welcome kit would come.  The website said two weeks.  Mike was very responsive and blamed the delay on software problems.  Being a software developer I could understand that but I began to think the problem was there wasn’t software.

When the packet arrived and as a software developer I realized the simplicity of what they delivered, a form letter and easy print badge.  I lost faith in their statement “build your training history, track your progress”.  If it was this difficult to do these things then it would be near impossible for them to do the others.

What ever the case, I’m as legit as I can get now.  Its time to ask about my blue belt certificate.

Jiu-Jitsu is Life and Life is Jiu-Jitsu

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Total Unchecked Pride in a Gi That’s Me

A while back I did a post entitled “Where Do You Wear Your Gi?”  I came to the realization I was not ashamed to be seen in public in my gi.  I had confidence in my BJJ.  Yesterday I received this comment on my post:

You people can make whatever justification that makes you feel better, but this is just you wanting to show off. It’s cocky and stupid. I can certainly understand having to stop somewhere after and not having time to change, but I fail to understand why you would keep the jacket on… No doubt, if all you have on is underwear on your pants you of course keep them on, but keeping the jacket it on is pure cock. Like you seriously have no shirt… lol you just made excuses for yourself, total unchecked pride. " – [whatever@gmail.com]

Mr. Whatever was more then willing to express his opinion from the safety of anonymity.  At first I thought of just clicking the “trash” for this comment like I do for the spam that gets through the filters.  But the more I thought about it the more I saw it as how I might have reacted before building confidence in the art I love so much.  I could see his reaction being applied to anything that was outside my comfort zone.  The first thing I would do was rationalize a way to dismiss what was causing me discomfort.  Saying that wearing a gi in public was “cocky and stupid”, “pure cock”, along with “total unchecked pride” seemed overkill.  Mr. Whatever could dismiss something that was so lacking in good sense and humility when he labeled it so.

I came to the conclusion that Mr. Whatever hasn’t built his confidence in BJJ yet.  He might be a Nogi guy with a chip on his shoulder about the gi.  He might say the same about military personnel in uniform off base.  What ever the case I am well pleased with my Jiu-Jitsu and my gi.  I am also a member of BJJ Gi Addicts Anonymous.  So whether it be red, white, or blue no matter the hue, I’ll have my gi on and hope you do too!

Jiu-Jitsu is Life and Life is Jiu-Jitsu