Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Training Log -- 3/30

Pretty much an easy-going night of jits.

Started out with more on the omoplata series we did a few months back. The sequence is break posture --> reach over their arm --> under your own leg --> grab the back of their collar. From here you can control them easily and work for an armbar, triangle, or an omoplata. I really liked these techniques and they stuck with me for a while in pretty good detail, though I haven't put them to practice yet because I've been working a lot on solidifying the basics. I'm definitely going to explore these in detail after Lutador.

Rolled with JC, Katie, Drake, and Antony. I felt EXCELLENT just going super slow and working mostly positions with the occasional submission. I worked from inside Antony's closed guard and was very conscious of my arms, neck, where I posted my legs and how far I shifted back. After he tried for a few sweeps and couldn't get one, he went into some great collar choke attempts that Josh showed us. I stayed aware of his intentions and tried to pass his guard, but his constant fussing with my sleeves and collar prevented most offense. He eventually hit a thumb-in choke which I knew was coming but he hit it really well. Actually, he said it was some kind of modified choke (not thumb-in) but whatever it was, it was awesome. The collar choke series is also fantastic and I'm going to work that into my game after Lutador as well. Even though collar chokes are less effective at higher levels, they open up a ton of joint-lock and sweep opportunities.

Working up less of a sweat since going really slow and careful. I think everything is coming along nicely and I feel a solid improvement in my game.

Out on Friday due to the Six Flags trip (provided it isn't canceled), but we're meeting tomorrow for open mat, which for me should help my half guard and side control reversals. They're the one thing I want to work on before competition.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Training Log -- 3/27: My Face Hurts

Fundamental class was me and Josh. Worked some half guard stuff, such as the overhook sweep, old school sweep, and plan B sweep. Flow rolled after.

Main Class was me, JC, Antony and Brian. We did the chinstrap choke, Marcello Garcia-gripped guillotine, and arm-in chinstrap choke. Started rolling and got caught a few times with some chokes, wristlock (...) and a armbar. I managed to rearrange my face on some T-shirt material, so now it looks pretty fucked up. Great Success.

Antony caught me with a guillotine and a nice textbook triangle which I have no excuse for being caught in. I played a more offensive game and was able to answer back with an armbar and straight ankle lock. This means that my defensive game is a few notches below my offense. Gonna work on that.

Brian destroyed my life even more than in Gi. My neck now looks fucked up from avoiding one of his monster RNCs.

Working more side-control escapes and half guard sweeps is on the agenda. Will be out next Friday, which is mildly annoying but whatever. I've included a sweet pic of my face (for the record, since this is my training log).

Friday, March 25, 2011

Training Log -- 3/25

Started the evening with collar choke drills. Tons of great info which I ultimately did not have an opportunity to practice tonight...

Did the basic 4 fingers in choke, as well as the thumb in around the head, grab-the-gi-material, and some Machado 4-fingers choke with the other elbow in the opposite artery.

Rolled with Johnny, who mauled me. Did MUCH better than I did 6 months go when I rolled with him, and I knew the Anaconda Choke was coming and defended it well enough. He was real explosive and forced his way into side-control where he hit all (or most of) his subs from. Tons of keylocks.

Only had guard with his brother, Steven, who's 180lbs and wrestles. He had no gi, so thus, no gi chokes. He wrestlered me but jumped into mount, where he usually does nothing. He tried for an armbar but botched it.

Rolled finally with a large white belt whose name escapes me. He weighs around 220lbs I think, and at that point I was thoroughly gassed. I got a sweep but couldn't do much as he ragdolled me. Couldn't submit me, though. I wanna roll with him when I'm fresher, because I think I can do much better, positionally speaking.

Got clocked with Josh's fist while avoiding a collar choke early on, so I got a sweet fat lip and also a matching black-ish eye from gi abrasion.

Gassed pretty bad, but good experience with some of the larger jiu jitsu guys.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Training Log -- 3/23: Sweeps

No new techniques today, just armbars, triangles, kimuras and collar chokes from guard, some sweeping work, takedowns and pulling guard.

Worked sweeps the best I could today. Rolled with Josh, Antony and Brian. Tried to take it real slow with Antony and did well. Brian out-muscled me, Triangle Choked Vertebrate-Crushed me, armbarred me and just generally raped my life. Hit a SWEEP from side control on Josh, which was the highlight of the otherwise uneventful evening. Got rear-naked jaw crushed by him but held out relatively well while he dominated on points.

Goals are to continue perfecting sweeps, work side control positional improvement, and play with more Spider Guard. Definitely progressing nicely and feeling good about Lutador.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Training Log -- 3/20

I hate no-gi.

Did some guard passes early on and worked on the technicalities of the scissor sweep. Flow rolled (rape rolled) and got airplaned on. Main class we did some shoulder lock that I didn't absorb too well, reverse armlock from guard, and some other stuff that didn't seem pertinent to me at the moment.

Focused hardcore on working sweeps and guard passing. Got a few guard passes, but nothing too advanced because the people I was rolling with don't have decent guard retention just yet. Hit several scissor sweeps and 1 half butterfly sweep.

Did some thinking about the type of game I want to play with, since I'm probably at the point in my training where I know enough to go into matches with "bread and butter" stuff. I really like the spider guard and I'm going to be working a ton of it in the coming weeks. As for no-gi, I'm not sure yet. It's gonna be a while before my comfort level gets anywhere near what it is in Gi, so we'll decide later on.

Going to continue to work guard sweeps, passing, half guard sweeps and side control escapes until Lutador. Should be feeling great by then.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Training Log -- 3/18 and UFC 128 Predictions

Today I was back at the gym after 5 days of "spring break". Arrived at 6pm for the fundamental class, of which I was the only one who showed. Drilled a guard pass and guard sweeps, including a half butterfly and spider guard sweep. Continued with some flow rolling with Josh and generally felt good going into the main class at 7:30.

Main class was small. We did a lapel choke from guard, armbar using the lapel, and Brabo choke with the lapel. Drilled a bit with Josh and Drake. Got murdered for the most part, but I think the guard passing is coming along nicely. I feel less panicky inside guard, and I feel like if I stop obsessing on subs from guard, there are usually sweeps waiting to be taken.

Rolled with Josh, Drake, and Coe, who's the 200+ pound purple belt assistant BJJ instructor. Got tossed around by Josh and mauled by Coe. Almost hit an armbar on Coe when I scrambled and he fell into a triangle set up, but he powered through it into side control and I couldn't finish it.

Pretty awesome night, and the extra drilling and flow rolling helped a lot. If I can up my sweep percentage, I might consider exclusively pulling guard at Lutador instead of going to the takedown.

UFC 128 is tomorrow, and it's going to be a great card. The main event is Bones Jones against Shogun Rua, and it should be quite entertaining. Here are my predictions:

Shogun by TKO. Jones is a great fighter with tons of potential, but he's MUITO ARROGANTE and Shogun is going to school him on how to fuck up the program. I expect Jones's chicken legs to get muay thai'd until he crumbles.

Faber by RNC. Faber will try to strike with Wineland, but eventually the fight is going down and he should have no problem locking that up.

Marquardt by decision. Yawn.

Schaub by KO. Cro Cop is old and he's got nothing for Schaub. Schaub should hit harder and faster. Crop Cop should look to hit one last LHK, just for nostalgia.

Jim Miller will probably win, but I don't really care. Kinda pissed that Benavidez's fight is unaired. Also, war Batman!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Spring Break

So, spring break is largely uneventful. Expected. Mostly spending time with the family and helping out around the house. Oh, and relaxing.

I'm pretty pissed off that I'm missing BJJ on Sunday and Wednesday, what with Lutador approaching and all (April 9th). Consequently, I am forced to analyze my game and decided where I need improvement the most before competition.

There are two main areas that I believe are too weak and must be improved prior to Lutador. They are:

1. Guard Passing
2. Guard sweeps

I believe that these weaknesses will end up costing me points and potential wins, so I need to work on them DILIGENTLY when I return. The only submission that should be attempted from guard while I fine-tune these positions is the climbing armbar, which should end up being a high percentage attack when I master it.

Diet and strength are both stagnant and I doubt I will see significant improvements in either before it's competition time. That doesn't mean I wont be working on them, though. I think if I get my ass in gear, then come NAGA time in July (if I decide to compete there), my body will likely resemble an Adonis of some sort.

I've been tossing around ideas for D'Arce/Brabo and Anaconda chokes. Mostly seeing some new positional opportunities for arm-triangle variants. I think head/arm chokes are arguably the most under-utilized submission and I want to explore them a bit more.

Looking forward to going fishing some time in the next couple weeks. Nothing like some time in the warm weather near a [preferably isolated] body of water. Also getting HYPED for UFC 128, which will undoubtedly be epic. Fight predictions will come later in the week, but I've begun to favor Shogun for the victory. I honestly wouldn't be surprised if he hit a kneebar or something awesome like that.

I end this update with Kris's FotH (Fight of the Hour), a legendary ground war featuring everything from toe-holds to sloppy armbars and beyond. Seriously, this is crazy shit. I will probably plug it on facebook too, since I know some weirdos don't read my blog yet (ignorance is not stupidity).

Friday, March 11, 2011

Training Log -- 3/11

Went early to class and worked on some guard passing and pulling guard. Main class, we did some takedown review. Standard double leg, single leg, and sprawl---> d'arce choke.

Rolled with Steven, a 180lb high school wrestler and Brian the ammy MMA fighter. Steven did wrestler-y things to me, such as plowing into side control, jumping into mount and holding me down. He tried for an armbar but it was terribly sloppy and I easily got out. I think he has some great potential, especially with his wrestling background, but he needs to stop focusing mainly on that when in BJJ class and work on submissions.

Brian ragdolled me as usual, choking me 10000 different ways. I got a kimura on his arm and used the leverage to attempt an armbar, but he landed against the wall and flung himself backwards, managing to stack the shit out of me until I let go.

It's easy to feel defeated after getting raped, but the reality is, for a 145lb guy I'm doing fine. I can't expect to be close to even with a guy who's got more BJJ experience, MMA experience, and 30+ pounds of muscle on me. Nor can I expect to even the playing field against a wrestler with more weight than me. If I keep everything in perspective, I'm doing fine.

Did some conditioning afterward, which left me largely in pain and exhausted.

Off to spring break, which will consist of me eating less (go figure) and missing Sunday and Wednesday. I hope to get back in gear when I return and start my weight training.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Training Log -- 3/9

Did some more gi-based guard passing. The two that I really liked were sleeve-grabbing techniques. One was a sleeve grab, tripod up, elbow in thigh nerve, and then knee-over their leg. Shrug off their other leg and pass. The second was a lead-in for a hammerlock, which involved grabbing the sleeve, passing their arm under their own body, and then passing using the elbow-in-nerve. Continue the arm crank once in side control for the submission.

Rolling was me, Katie, JC, and Antony. Forced myself to work from inside guard, which I've really begun to dread. I think my top, offensive game has largely passed my defensive game, and I'm not as proficient when I pull guard or end up inside someone's guard. JC managed to get his damn collar choke on me, which I fended off, gave my back, and avoided a rear-naked choke. He got mount and completed his choke, as I was gassed from the defense.

Rolling with Antony was easily my high point. I forced myself into his guard as I wanted to work from there. He hit a nice hip bump sweep and raped me from mount. He tried for an armbar but I popped my elbow out as the bell went off.
The next two rolls were great. Passed into north/south and controlled him for a good bit. Locked in a kimura and waited for him to react. Hit a sweet transition to his back. Second roll I got caught in his half guard and worked to free my leg. Casey mentioned that my control of Antony was fantastic, and he really liked the smooth transition. Win.

Did some conditioning after. Felt like crap, but great night of jitz.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Training Log -- 3/4

Went over the basics today. Got the most out of side control review, because side control is probably my weakest position. Rolled with a new guy who was slightly goon-ish for a high school wrestler. Triangled him pretty easily, but apparently I wasn't supposed to go for

Drilling went well. Armbarred people and then got tapped by Josh with some collar choke I totally didn't see coming. It pretty much raped my windpipe, so gonna have to look into that further.

Techniques were some guard passes which are ALWAYS good for me to re-learn. Mostly a collar grab, elbow in thigh nerve to break the closed guard, and then the usual pass. Gonna try to work these more often for experience.

Did some "light" rolling with Drake, who's pretty young, and JC. Worked sweeps with Drake and did whatever I wanted. Helped him out a bit with triangle defense, like protecting the arm, and armbar escapes. With JC I hit a bunch of subs for the first time in a while, since I usually just steamroll on him and win on points (probably like 14-0...). Armbarred and keylocked him. Took his back but was tired from the previous 2.5 hours of rolling. Overall, pretty satisfied with today's work.

My leg is still busted up, but I can roll fairly easily still. Put on 4 pounds thus far and I am continuing to push for between 2800-3000 calories a day. Goal weight is 155 currently.

Weight training begins tomorrow. Trying to have a programmed designed for me by my roommate who's in strength and conditioning.

Ideal would be 155 pounds, then cut weight for my competition in April (which I'm still not 100% on taking) down to 149 and compete as a featherweight. We'll see what happens here. Motivation is a massive factor and unfortunately, I fucking despise weight training.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Training Log -- 3/2

Did some judo throws to start out. My leg cramped up pretty badly half way through (something that has persisted for the past few days), and I sat out the rest of the drilling.

Rolled with JC, who's Casey's son, and Antony. Did the usual with JC without really thinking, which included passing his non-existent guard and bending his arm in gruesome directions. Got sloppy from North/South and ended up in mount again. Still have to work on securing positions before sub attempts.

Did well with Antony. Passed his guard and he recomposed after a hip-bump (there's the securing position thing again...). Worked from my own guard, keeping him largely at bay and preventing side control. He stood up and I did a technical stand, which resulted in me hitting a sweet single-leg for another guard pass. Second roll, I worked again from guard, eventually locking in a triangle on my weak side. Struggled to finish it, but tried to shift the total weight over to the better angle and work for an armbar. He escaped, and we both acknowledged we were too gassed out to do anything else.

Rolled again with Brian just for shits and giggles. I think he passed, but lost position. I got a sweep and ended up briefly in side control before he ragdolled me and I re-established guard.

Not a bad night overall.