BJJ Noob questions
Hi, I'm about a month into bjj training. I'm 5'11" 225 pounds and gonna be 40 next week. I've got a couple questions and would love some of your input.
I find myself getting gassed consistently..I weight train 4 times a week and also roll 4 times a week. I'm wondering what your recommendations might be for replacing one or 2 of my weight training workouts with some form of stamina builder.
Usually I'm completely spent by the third minute. I'm working on my breathing and trying to slow things down, but it's a work in progress.
Secondly, I feel like when I'm rolling with smaller guys that I hold back as something in my subconscious doesnt want to hurt my training partner... especially when I outweigh them by 50-70 pounds. Things like stacking, knee on belly, etc.
Depending on how you're lifting, you should drop at least one of those days. Are you lifting for strength or bodybuilder style or what? I'm near your age and size (albeit 3 inches shorter and 20 lbs lighter), so I understand where you're coming from. The problem is that at 40 your ability to recover is just not the same as it was when you were younger. You can still lift and keep your strength, but you going to trade-off recovery. Keep it up for a few months and you will be carrying nagging injuries. Only you know how you're recovering, but that's generally true. And here's a hard-learned truth: there are diminishing returns to strength in BJJ. If you're already strong, you're better off working on stamina and flexibility.
Originally Posted by RhinoUP
The fact that you're new is part of the reason that you're tired. You need to relax. I'm assuming that you're probably trying to muscle everything and you don't know how to deal with adrenaline. The more you relax the more stamina you will have.
Dealing with the little guys is a case by case basis. If they're purple belt and above, have at them. They're used it. 140 pound white belts? Weak women? No.
Do any of these seem like advanced questions to you? No? THen I wonder why you posted them in the Advanced Grappling forum?
Originally Posted by RhinoUP
Moved to the Basic forum.
Thank you for your reply and advice. I failed to mention that I'm on doctor prescribed testosterone replacement therapy...which is awesome by the way...but recovering from lifting is much easier than recovery from jits training...my joints hurt, knees elbows ets. The first 2 weeks were brutal.
As far as building stamina, has anyone ever tried spinning>?
For most people as new as you are the problem isn't cardio but technique. If you keep working on doing things in a more efficient way you'll probably find you're able to roll for much longer without big improvements in your fitness.
Not wanting to hurt your training partners is a good thing.
Sorry bout that...my bad.
Originally Posted by jnp
This right here isn't a bad habit. IMO it's better to be nice to the little guys and leave to harder stuff to guys our size. Hopefully you have at least one other guy there who is at least 20lbs of your weight. If not find a little guy who wants to work on escaping bottom but don't crush him either try to stick to technique and weight distribution. Your going to miss some subs but trust me your going to want to have focused on technique when you run into another big guy.
Originally Posted by RhinoUP
When I first ran into a Beak sized training partner I quickly realized I wasn't as good at sweeps as I thought I was and getting Kimura and Americanas was harder when you don't have 50lbs on a dude.
Like Res said, the key might be simply cutting one workout. Only you are going to know your body.
If it turns out that cardio is what you need: long distance running. Swimming. Bike riding. All the usual stuff. Yes, I'm sure spinning would be fine.
But you may come to find, as you become more relaxed and comfortable on the mat, that the problem just goes away on its own. You start gassing out a lot less once you're relaxed, and especially once you figure out how to keep things moving with technique instead of power.
What you've described about not wanting to hurt anyone sounds like an improvement on most BJJ newbs, actually. The people who hold back a little and try to use the moves instead of spazzing out/slamming/stuff like that get instant brownie points in my book. If you're in an armbar, triangle, whatever you need to learn a way to get out of it besides slamming your partner or muscling your arm out because you're 3x as strong as your rolling partner. When I roll with people smaller than me (rare) I spend a lot of time actively focused on "would I have been able to do that on someone my size or bigger?" to make sure I'm winning with technique, not just strength.
It was brushed on earlier, but the fact is that you are probably using strength over technique and probably grunting while doing it, holding your breath and exerting energy when energy need not be exerted. The reason you gas is because you are using too much energy, or "spazzing out".
Now, you might not be fully spazzing out, you may have realised that flinging your arms around willy nilly and bucking like a bronco is not beneficial, so you're not a full on n00b. But you still might be spazzing out, albeit just being a bit less obvious to yourself about it.
I overheard a 40+ overweight four stripe white belt being told repeatedly last night that they had to breathe and this while while he was on top. Listen to your breathing in all your positions. Does your breathing sound relaxed? If your breathing pattern is comparable to your breathing pattern while doing a 400m sprint, you're doing it wrong. It is one of the biggest and most common mistakes. I love it when I hear someone breathing heavy while in mount (in before lulz-y comment about battlefields liking men breathing heavy on top of him), desperately trying to armbar, kimura and choke. It's music to my ears because even though I am on the bottom, with all their weight crushing me, I'm relaxed with nary an out of place piece of energy being spared where it need not be used. After a while, heavy breather gets tired and I get busy, exploiting that tiredness and using my pent up explosive energy that I haven't wasted.
Relaxing more means tapping more, which means learning more.
Breathe. That should be your main focus. While rolling, every time you think, "****, I'm tired", you're now going to think of me saying in a Zen manner, "BREEEEEAAAAATTTHHHHEEEE". And you'll breathe. Then you'll forget to breathe. You'll gas. Then you'll remember. Soon you'll forget that you have to remember and you'll realise that you're breathing anyway and you've been rolling for fifteen minutes. You'll have tapped plenty, but you'll still be able to go.
In regards to the smaller guys, um, yeah, concentrate on the breathe/ relax thing first. It'll help. If the above is the case as I suspect, then you probably will hurt the smaller guy at the moment because you aren't relaxed. But just remember, if they are a higher rank than you, they are probably used to what you think is going to hurt them. In fact, they might be taking it easy on you. Just remember that.
Great advice guys. Thank you. Ive been focusing on breathing before anything else. Made it through 4 5 min rounds last night. And back to back classes tonight. My body got tired before i got gassed. If that makes any sense.