Tuesday, November 30, 2010


My family dog, Mac passed away this past weekend. He was 11 years old. He lived a long happy life and has gone to doggy heaven.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


I love this time of year!  Some people don't get excited about all the family gatherings that tend to happen during the holiday season, but I love it!  I get to see my huge extended family tomorrow - all my aunts, uncles, siblings, sibling-in-laws (yes I just made that word up), nieces, nephews, cousins, family friends, and the list goes on! 

Thanksgiving 2008 (minus a grandma, add a few new kids, a new boyfriend, and a new wife this year!) 



Yesterday I bought a veggie platter, 4 pounds of shrimp cocktail, blue crab dip, and a pumpkin cheese cake to bring for the big feast!  My mom will be cooking the turkey amongst other things.  My aunt Jenn will be bringing her famous 10 pounds of mashed potatoes and watergate salad!  When I was a kid I used to eat an entire plate full of her watergate salad!  Everything else will be covered by everyone else that is coming. 

I have a tradition of breaking the wishbone with my cousin Rachael, we have done this every year for as far back as I can remember.  This year will be different though :( because she is in Disney World for an internship.  I will just have to save it for when she comes back!

My brother David will also be missing this year.  He took a spur-of-the-moment trip to Miami with some of his friends!  Two of my cousins just had babies (like just days ago) so they will be missed this year too.

I can't wait until tomorrow! :-D

Sunday, November 21, 2010

My Weekend

Thursday night at midnight I went to see Harry Potter!  It was awesome!  The only bad thing about it was that I only got about 3 hours of sleep before I had to be back at the gym to work in the morning.

Friday and Saturday classes were awesome!  We learned some great techniques and I rolled extremely hard.  (I think this new mentality is really starting to set in.)

I decided its finally time to see a doctor about my shoulders.  They have been bothering me for almost 2 years now so I am going to make an appointment to get an MRI soon.  I'm hoping I will be able to rehab them and not need surgery!

Dave and I  looked at a potential house to rent, but it was a bit of a disappointment.

And I bought my Dad a Christmas present!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Frustration and Perseverance

Frustration: a common emotional response to opposition. Related to anger and disappointment, it arises from the perceived resistance to the fulfillment of individual will. The greater the obstruction, and the greater the will, the more the frustration is likely to be.                -Wikipedia

It's hard sometimes being the only female in the school, and not just a female, but a blue belt as well.   Every white belt wants to catch a blue belt, and no guy wants to get beat by a girl. Because of this my technique must be sharper, my drive to win must be stronger, my mind cannot get frustrated. The better I get, the more everyone wants to smash me. The better I get, the harder it is for the white belts to do anything to me.  The better I get, the greater the power gets that is used against me.

Last night I was reminded of this.  It seemed like the more I wanted it, and the harder I pushed, the tougher the fight became.  Nothing I did seemed to be working and I was getting extremely frustrated.  Everyone was sweeping me or passing my guard and frustration was taking over my mind.  Everyone felt so powerful, and I felt so weak.  My breathing started to get rapid and heavy, almost like a panic.  I felt my eyes watering up, but I couldn't let myself cry.  You can never let yourself cry...at least not in front of anyone.  You cannot let any weakness show through.  I continued to spar with increasing frustration and when class ended and I left the cage, went into my room (I have a private room at the gym) and the tears started falling.  Women are emotional beings, and when I get emotionally overwhelmed I tend to cry.  I wasn't crying because I was sad, I was crying because of how badly I wanted every move I attempted, and failed to execute.

I pulled myself together after about 10 minutes, painfully replayed the sparring through my head, figured out where I made mistakes, and told myself I needed to work to fix these mistakes, and not get frustrated next time.   Persistent hard work is what will get my through days like these, and bring me to success in the future.

Perseverance: continued effort to do or achieve something despite difficulties, failure, or opposition.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

I wish everyday could be like this!

Yesterday I got to sleep in til noon, work for two hours, and then train for the rest of the day. What a life!

Immediately after getting off worked I changed into my gi and got ready for a two hour training session with my strength and conditioning coach, Josh Wehrmann. First I gave him a hour long one-on-one BJJ lesson, followed by 30 minutes of non-stop sparring, then he put me through a grueling 30 minute personal training session!

Drilling cross mount transitions with a 400 lbs man on top of you is pretty rough, my ribs are sore and my skin raw from the grind of his shoulder pressure on my face. But can I complain? No way! What doesn't kill you makes you stronger, right? If I can handle 400 lbs driving into my jaw now, then anyone I compete against will feel like nothing.

Rolling was great! The sweat was rolling off my face, and believe it or not, Josh was doing the same. That's right, Josh, my 400 lbs partner, rolling with a 160 lbs girl, was sweating bullets. I took the advice from my post yesterday and rolled hard, telling myself I could beat him. Did I tap him? No, but I did put him in a triangle, and dominated the positional game. Never underestimate the power of good technique!

After rolling I got a short break before starting my conditioning. I ate an apple for some extra carbs (I started dieting again and I didn't want low blood sugar to effect my training), I put my tennis shoes on, and headed to the PT room. I was asked on a scale of 1-10 how bad I wanted it....i said 9. Three six minute rounds of hell started after that. My legs were burning and my cardio was hurting. I could definitely tell that I had taken the last month and a half off from dieting and conditioning. It was rough, but I lasted, and I loved it! Then I finished it off with my dear friend, the foam roller. (And if you have ever used a foam roller before you know how bad it hurts!)

Yay, time to relax right? Wrong!

My precious, adorable, well behaved kids were waiting quietly and patiently for their instructor to arrive for Jiu-Jitsu class.......in my dreams! I walk into the room and what do I see? Six gi-less children wrestling one of the parents! Needless to say, class was interesting that night. Three more kids ended up coming during the warm up. Eventually, after a hard warm-up, they started to calm down. Drilling went well, and they were rewarded with sparring. As much as those kids drive me nuts sometimes, I gotta love them! :-)

I was supposed to do Judo class after the kids class but I was so exhausted from training with Josh that I just went home, took a shower, and watched Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths (Yes, I am a dork!) before falling asleep.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Winning Mentality

If you want to win you have to believe you are the best. You cannot accept failure. You cannot accept defeat. You are capable of beating anyone, even your instructor, and you must roll in this mindset. Whoever your opponent is, they are just another person.

In the words of my instructor, Dave Trader, "You have to take it personally and refuse to accept [defeat]. If someone beats you today you make it your mission to beat them tomorrow. You roll it back in your mind again and again and search for the error you made so you can correct it. That is what it takes to be a national or world champion at the highest level."

Defeat is not just losing a match, it is getting taken down, having your guard passed, getting mounted, etc. You can never accept this. You must give as much effort in class as you would in competition. You will compete the way you train. If you accept defeat during class, you will accept defeat in the tournament.

Believe you can beat anyone, and train this way.

Listen to the interview with Kyle Dake's teammate around the 4:00 mark.