TUF 26 – episode 2 blog

I love my intro clip!!!!!!!!!!!!

shooting energy blasts is awesome!

Anyway. Welcome to my blog/ journal surrounding Ep 2, which was the first and second week we were in the house.

I hated our training schedule. It screwed up my eating schedule. We trained from 12-2, and then 6 PM-8. I have to try and have a smaller breakfast because I don’t need it to hold me from 4 AM to 1 PM like I do back home. I usually eat so much for breakfast that it was weird not, and I felt emptier. Then, I ate half a lunch before practice and half afterwards. I hated the feeling but we had no choice. The other team got the 10 AM – 12, 4:00 PM-6 time slot.

So I feel like Justin’s style is kickboxing, but his roots are wrestling. I think in his fights, he uses his wrestling to avoid getting taken down, and in turn KOs his opponents. He and his coaches told us from the beginning that we’d be doing a lot of wrestling. I ended up learning some nice things. I liked going with my new teammates and experiencing their skill and style. We also went with the coaches a lot. I ended up getting confused and struggled with certain things because their way of explaining things is different than Coach John’s.

“I’m confusing the sh*t out of you,” Justin said at one point. The cameras were all over us.
It wasn’t his fault at all. “It’s me! Not you!” I said, chagrined.

My brain just absorbs stuff a certain way. Great, now my dumb confused look will be all over TV I thought. What would John say? ‘Stop overthinking it, you do this all the time.’ Alright, fine! ~_~; So I just did some move (the shuffle step) that I might do in a similar situation, and Justin said, “That was it! That was it exactly!” Then I realized the step he was describing WAS what I do all the time, just with a different name. And then everybody says “You’re overthinking it” and I get irritated because it’s not like that. 🙁 I’m “detail-oriented.” Once I told them that, they made a special effort to come over and explain a little more about the situation I would do the move in, distancing, etc, which is EXACTLY what I needed.

Team Gaethje coaches had so much knowledge to give us and were so friendly and supportive in doing it. At the same time I missed Syndicate like crazy, I loved them. I really liked Luke Caudillo’s way of holding mitts. It reminded me a little bit of John’s. I usually asked him to hold for me, and also help corner me in my fight.

We got to go to the UFC Performance Institute every Tuesday. I got to try the Cryotherapy chamber and had it set to moderate. All I felt was cold gas on my skin, but it didn’t feel like it penetrated my body and I noticed zero effectiveness afterwards. Maybe I should have tried the highest setting but I was scared. lol I think I’ll stick with ice baths from now on.

After my fight, the brought over sushi and games. We played a bag tossing game and I was doing quite well. Then charades. We all wrote words on scraps of paper and put them in the pot to draw. The FIRST card I drew was “sex.”


Soooooooooo I made the motions of embracing someone and kissing them……and people were guessing, “Dancing,” “romance,” “love,” “Making out.”


Because I refused to hump the air on national TV. I have an image to uphold. LOL

Anyway. So Karine vs DeAnna. I’ve been making friends with Karine. I could tell from talking to her immediately that she had basic grammar knowledge for simple present for level 1 verbs, a few simple pasts, and the ability to make future using “will.” From my experienced teaching English as a second language at Berlitz Japan, I know how to speak slowly and simply, making sure my words don’t run into each other changing the sound, also avoiding slang. Beginners don’t know slang. “I luveedingcheesenbred.” That looks weird, right? It sounds weird to beginners cuz the “t” often becomes voiced and takes on the “d” sound when spoken quickly. (like water) Also “and” often becomes “n,” right?

/end teacher tangent

I tried to teach her more vocab, and have her repeat incorrect sentences correctly. 🙂 Practicing a language is just like practicing sports: you can’t just think it, you have to do it! Let your tongue practice! I only had a few real “grammar lessons” with her. It was mostly words here and there.
(screen shots are copyright TUF or UFC)

So I met DeAnna here and there at Invictas, and I liked her. Then we got set to fight and fought. I won by decision. I think she lost her last fight. I can’t deny I had mixed feelings leading up to this fight. I wanted DeAnna to get back on the winning streak, but I didn’t want my teammate to lose, either. Gah. Such is the nature of the Jungle.

The UFC brings in someone to cornrow our hair the night before the fights. (THANK YOU, TUF!) I made sure Karine knew the hair braider lady was coming (she had gone to bed, expecting it to be done the next day). Phew, glad I stuck my nose into her business. Then again, having lived in Japan for 8 years, I’ve struggled and been helped numerous times by native Japanese friends who know how things work.

It was really cool to see Karine’s home video now as I’m home watching TUF on TV! She talked about her boyfriend a lot, so I know she missed him! She also drew pictures of the Ararat mountains, and gave me a mini-history lesson of Armenia. I wondered what her gym was like as she described it, and it was cool to see her teaching kids, just like me!

I hadn’t known the story of DeAnna’s dad until she told me one day when we were hanging out or taking a walk, I forget. I liked getting to see her gym and home and pictures, too. And it’s nice not to be the weirdest person in a group anymore! HAHA. Excuse me, not weird, ‘unique.’ 🙂 (I totally would have joined in the monkey business outside if I had known!)

Man, I had heard Emily got hurt but I happened to not be at practice that day. I think it was the day after my fight, so I stayed home. It sucked so much for her. I felt so sad watching the footage. :/

So DeAnna went out there and performed well. Karine got stuck against the cage and couldn’t get out. Holy top pressure. DeAnna is dangerous!

She tried her hardest but it wasn’t enough. When she got back into the lockerroom, she was in tears. Everyone hugged her and tried to comfort her, despite knowing that nothing would make the pain feel any better. We’ve all experienced loss, and it’s the depths of hell. It’s not just that you don’t succeed….. but you’ve sweat, toiled, pushed, struggled, and of course enjoyed many days, weeks, months, years of training to get ready for THIS ONE BIG OPPORTUNITY….and you couldn’t achieve your goal. In front of the entire country, or world. Half naked. Getting physically beaten down, and your entire strength of your body, heart, soul, willpower, ki energy, wasn’t enough. Then when you win, it’s the highest joy and happiness, like it was all worth something.

I’ve said this before, but that’s why I NEVER boo fighters, and I ALWAYS respect all fighters.

After a few minutes, I tried to encourage everyone to just let her be. Let her cry. Let her get it out. Everyone was trying to make her stop crying. If it were me, I’d want just my coach to say a few words and that’s it. (But that’s how I figured out how to hide in the bathroom. lol) I have actually cried a bunch of times on TUF but you’re not gonna see any footage. 😛 I learned my lesson.
Anyway, everybody’s different in how they react. Maybe she needed it. Who I am I to say? Miesha was really sweet with what she said and did.

I was sad and happy at the same time. It was a very bizarre state to be in.

Thanks for reading, guys!

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