Holy Moly, it’s been a month since I posted last! Well, I wrote an article on Bloodyelbow about getting my black belt.
So on February 15th, Mike went to Evan Dunhamn’s jiujitsu academy, where I train jiujitsu, and they promoted me together. It’s been a long crazy road! Click here to read about it: https://www.bloodyelbow.com/platform/amp/2020/3/9/21153955/power-rangers-black-belt-happy-warriors-roxanne-modafferi-19-year-bjj-journey-editorial
I cried from happiness a lot. And I now feel like I’m glowing inside. Constantly whenever I put it on. ^^ It’s been my goal for…EVER. I can’t even put it into words. Read the above article and see the picture I painted.
I’ve always imagined various scenarios of how I would get it, when, in the gym? Which gym? After a fight? After a match? On the podium? By who? I knew that none of those fantasies would happen just as I imagined them… they never do. But what happened was one of the best possible outcomes. I wanted Mike to be there, since I think he played a major role in my development from brown belt level to black. Rene and Taylor at Duhamn’s were the most influential in raising my gi jiujitsu level. I’ve had the good fortune to be able to take Evan’s classes when he teaches on Saturday lately.
Okay so that happened. I’ve really been doing a lot of thinking lately on people, teachers, teaching, levels, and depths of understanding. What’s the difference between a brown belt and a black belt? A lot, actually. The number of techniques known, competency at executing the moves in live competition, depth of understanding, and more. I feel that I have a high level of competency in my fights. I probably know a medium/average number of moves. I have a deep understanding of things like chokes, armbars, and sweeps. However, somebody like Matt B from Dunhamn’s is still a brown belt, but I think he knows a greater number of techniques than I do (I took a class he taught), and has a pretty deep knowledge of his favorite moves. Taylor is good at leg locks but not so much spider guard.
I never really looked at it that way, as analyzing people like that. Now I can see everyone has a different depth of understanding about different things.
So a few weeks ago my bestie fought in the Invicta FC Phoenix rising bantam weight tournament! She was supposed to be on the card as an alternate but somebody pulled out and she got put in! SHE PERFORMED SO WELL!
She won the first round smashingly. Lovely elbows and clinch-work! I mean, it’s not like I’ve been trying to try all my AJ-clinch stuff on her for the past six months or anything like that. ^_^ She’s also been working elbows with assistant coach Marvin “Beastman” Eastman. She lost her second round fight by split decision which I think is crap. I think she won it. :/
She wanted to cosplay Sailor Moon and looked great! I got the Luna outfit but only wore the top….for now. 😉
I was really happy I got to see my friend Katie, and I got to train with Candy and Luz for the first time! None of us brought our belts. lol
Man, I don’t know what to make of this whole corona virus thing. At first I felt it’s been blown out of proportion. I mean, I’m not worried about catching it so much because I heard it’s not fatal for someone like me, healthy, young, etc… but then people with weak immune systems or elderly people are more in danger. I just am baffled to see the world shutting down?! Businesses will surely start failing. Concerts, MMA events, meetings, sports seasons are being canceled. Schools are being closed. I just read a conversation between parents on social media…what are they supposed to do with their kids all day when they go to work?!
and more importantly, WHAT IF THERE WAS a situation like 28 days later? or Zombieland? We are so ill-equipt to handle it, yo. I mean, I dunno, I’m not a doctor or disaster prevention professional.
I’m trying to make more time in my day. I’m going to try to give up my kids class on Tuesday and put it on Wednesday, the way it was before the BJJ team merger. This simple switch of an hour will allow me to maybe take a nap after training on Tuesday, and not have to cram all my chores in on Thursday, my only day I don’t teach. I have to plan all appointments, shopping trips, visits to businesses on that day, and I’m so exhausted from training ANYWAY. I don’t have time to clean my apartment other than dishes, daily laundry, and occasionally sweeping the floor. Dude, so I felt guilty doing it, but I did Muay Thai at 9 AM and then skipped MMA class on Friday, and because I had an extra hour in my day, I was able to briefly scrub my bathtub (it needs more), sweep the floor, clean my kitchen table, write a blog in Japanese, watch one episode of anime, and that was it. Then I had to go teach kids. -_- My day is ridiculous.
I also learned something about my sleep. Lorenzo let me borrow a book. It says high performance athletes are supposed to get 10-12 hours of sleep a day. HAH as if I could ever do THAT. I’m lucky if I get 7. So basically check this out: every day, I’m sleeping six hours and then my body wakes up. I cannot go back to sleep until I eat. Then my body starts shutting down. This past year, I’ve started giving in and laying back down. I sleep another hour and a half.
THAT MAKES SENSE NOW, reading this book. So what I call my “post breakfast nap” isn’t really a nap. It’s the 4th REM cycle that I was missing! Because I ALWAYS sleep exactly an hour and a half, which is how long it takes to complete a sleep cycle. Well, that rules out my 6 AM yoga option, and assures me that I’m correct in going back to bed rather than calling myself lazy and just starting to clean my apartment at 5:30 AM.
Speaking of Lorenzo, every session I have with him, I feel fortunate. He makes time for me, is committed to my success, and I can trust him. I’ve truly gotten stronger, better, and have become a better person from his advice about life.
I’ve been working a lot of Muay Thai with AJ, and forming closer bonds with the guys in his class. I wouldn’t have thought I’d feel so at home on the Muay Thai side of the gym. lol It’s kinda nice.
I do love my kids class, of course!
I also visited NJ a few weeks ago to see my aunts, cousins, and mom! I had a wonderful time and got to spend quality time with all of them! Alison, especially, taught me some important life lessons. So cool I could experience that with her. As a child, I lived in a nuclear family and only saw my relatives once a year, so now as adults, I’m trying to get more time in.
Time is short, in the end. This week it was my cousin Adele’s birthday. She would have been 41, but she passed away almost exactly a year ago from cancer. Actually, the very day I visited my mom and aunt, it was the anniversary of my Uncle Fran’s passing from cancer. I can’t believe it’s been a year already!
Anyway, last week was a challenge physically…. I kind of over-trained just barely. Was super productive. I’m GROWING and IMPROVING. I didn’t think I could be more motivated. It’s dangerous because I can hurt myself. lol I’m obsessed with surpassing myself and my rivals. It was also a challenge emotionally.
I’m glad I have my coaches, friends near and far, teammates, fans, and sponsors. I know who has my back!
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