For those who don’t know, I’m 36 years old and have been working for the last two years at getting in shape after having climbed to 210 lbs (95 kg). I am exercising about an hour a day Mondays-Saturdays (Sundays off as my ‘sabbath’ rest days), got down to about 175 lbs (79 kg) and have just recently added Martial Arts to my training regimen.
So it’s been about a month now since I started training at a local MMA school. My initial intention was to be going to classes daily, but I don’t want to overwhelm my schedule so that I’m missing valuable family time; and with the amount of time that I want to train BJJ (Brazilian Jiu Jitsu) specifically I would definately be over-training to do so.
My class schedule (up to this week) has been 3 hours of BJJ Mondays, and Wednesdays. 6 o’clock starts with a tradititonal class, at 7 is live-rolling (an hour of BJJ sparring), then at 8 there is a ‘beginner’s class.’ I’ve been doing all three.
On Teusdays and Thursdays there are MMA classes, but I’ve found I definately need the in-between days to recover after 3 hour BJJ stints.
How am I liking it so far? I Love it. I might even be swayed like some people who become exercise evangelists with the “Everybody should train BJJ” slogan. I wouldn’t necessariy recommend 3 hour days of BJJ to everyone, but after doing it for a month I can’t get enough.
After 3 hours of BJJ I have been pretty sore and – as mentioned – don’t want to overtrain, but I also realize that to a very large extent what I am doing in the process is teaching my body. Of course I’m committing different moves and techiques to muscle-memory, but I am also teaching my body endurance. Eventually, I would LIKE to train daily (or at least be able to) – probably not 3 hours daily, but be able to fill in the additional days of the week with like an hour MMA class, but of course, we’ll see.
I do think that we are more physically capable than we realize as long as we work ourselves up to whatever we are doing. When I started strength training, I was sore ALL THE TIME for at least a month or so, but then my body got used to the exercise and now my muscles rarely get very sore even after a particularly intensive workout. Will I get to the point that I can train martial arts daily on top of exercising? I guess we’ll find out, but I’m taking it slow so I don’t get injured.
One thing I discovered is that though I often feel too tired to train in the evening, yet when I get in and get my blood flowing I don’t feel tired at all. In fact sometimes it’s been difficult to get to sleep after a 3 hour full body workout.
I also had intended to take some Muay Thai classes, which I still hope to do at some point, but at the gym I’m going to, they are on the same days as the BJJ classes. As I hope to continue to train Martial Arts indefinately, I do intend to focus on Muay Thai at some point in the future… but I’m also aware that I’ve got enough to learn in BJJ to keep me busy for the rest of my life.
On Sunday one of my kids came down with a cold which I seemed to pick up Monday (don’t worry, it’s not COVID – I had that at Christmas time – just a cold), so I didn’t go in and train this week Monday, or yesterday (Wednesday). I didn’t feel sick enough that I couldn’t exercise, but neither did I want to expose anyone else to my cold.
Honestly, I’m loving the BJJ so much it was really pretty dissapointing to miss classes this week. I did continue my regular home exercise routine, as I did through COVID… incidentally (and I don’t know if it had to do with regular exercise and diet, but) I wasn’t too badly affected by COVID when I had it.
I had thought that continuing to exercise at home may seem more tedious once I had started doing BJJ, but far from being the case, it has actually helped to add motivation to my home exercise routine. For one thing, one of my advantages to the sport as a beginner has been a degree of physical strength and condition that I have developed over the past couple of years. That helps motivate me to push myself because in my personal exercise routine because I want I want to be stronger and better conditioned next time I step onto the mat. That’s good because I was starting to hit a slump in my motivation for exercise recently.