Semi-Charmed Life


Training Woes

Brazilian jiu jitsu is simultaneously one of the most rewarding yet frustrating things I have ever done. I love grappling so much and try so hard to improve all the time, yet there are some days where I just get so angry at myself because I feel like these past 3 and a half years have amounted to nothing. Those are the times when nothing goes right in training. Last night was one of those nights.

There's such a fine line between being positive and having an objective outlook on things. I have below average athleticism and coordination, which I'm sure many of my friends can attest to. My reflexes are poor, I'm slow to grasp concepts and pick up on things, and I have the body of Ghandi. I don't want to come off like I tell myself these things all the time to justify why I do poorly in training sometimes, but this is what I see when I try to analyze myself objectively.

I haul my ass to the gym all the time and I never make excuses while I'm there, but sometimes I have to question if this whole "if you believe in yourself you can achieve anything" is just positive bullshit that we feed ourselves to get us going.

Are these kinds of thoughts a form of self-limiting behavior? 

Maybe, but I still try my best at the gym. I still show several times a week to take those beatings. On rare occasions I'll have a good training session where I'm able to impose my game and my will, but it seems like a lot of times I'm on the other side of that. When people tell me "great defense," I never take that as a compliment. Barely surviving is not something to be proud of. Still, I thank them for the round of training and move on to the next guy and do my best. Aside from appreciation of the art (or sport, whatever you want to call it), the only thing that keeps me going is this belief that if I keep on training, I will be better. But then I get those nights like last night that make me question that faith. Will I get better?

Every time I train I am humbled, and I have to reach deep within to pick myself back up and tell myself that this is my own journey and that even though other folks are farther along on their journies, if I keep going I'll eventually get there. And then I'll find out there was never any "there" to begin with, and it was the journey that mattered all along and I'll reach some enlightened zen like Buddha state. This is getting too meta.

I need a beer ASAP.



Rolling Deep

This hits too close to home.

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Rooting for the Underdog

Americans love a good underdog story, and the story of Frankie Edgar's ascent to the top of the lightweight division in the UFC is possibly one of the best underdog stories in all of mixed martial arts. FE was doing extremely well in his career, and when it came time for him to challenge BJ Penn for the belt, he was written off as an extreme underdog. He was always undersized for the division, as he typically walks around at the weight he fights at while most other fighters cut down significant amounts of weight. Not only was he fighting a naturally bigger fighter this time, but he was fighting BJ Penn. Most considered BJ Penn to be an extremely dominant fighter (and one of the top pound for pound fighters in the world) that excels in nearly all aspects of the game, but surprisingly FE fought him to a decision and won.

Critics wrote that off as a fluke, and the general concensus was that there needed to be a rematch. The rematch happened with the same outcome, but fans still weren't sold on Frankie Edgar as a champion.

His next title defense was against Gray Maynard, who handed FE's only career loss. This was an EPIC fight. Maynard absolutely ROCKED Frankie in the first round and it was pretty much a foregone conclusion that the fight was over. It was an absolute testament to the heart of Frankie Edgar that he was able to tough it out through that brutal first round. Huge credit also goes to the ref for properly letting the fight play out and not stopping that fight prematurely, which he had a case for. Frankie came back out in the second round and fought with some fire. He put on an absolutely jaw dropping performance that was able to turn the outcome of that fight into a draw.

This past weekend, Edgar and Maynard met for the third time in the octagon. The first round played out in nearly the same fashion as their second meeting. I had my hands on my head, pulling at my hair, as Frankie got rocked early on by Maynard. Miraculously, he was able to weather the storm and fought the 2nd and 3rd rounds as if the 1st never happened. In the 4th round, he ended any possible questions as he was able to knock out Maynard.

If you watched the Edgar vs Maynard 2 and 3 and you did not walk away a fan of Frankie Edgar, then I don't know what to tell ya. Maybe mixed martial arts is not for you. For the longest time I've admired GSP but even though I think he is one of the world's most talented fighters, he has never displayed that level of courage, heart and determination inside the octagon.

At the heart of this story is a tale of a smaller fighter, who was discounted as an underdog even as the defending champion, who was brutalized and nearly stopped early on in the fight and courageously fought back to maintain his title as the lightweight champion of the world. This is Rocky in real life.

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Zedd – Shave It

I'm about to head out to the gym, but I just had to post this before I go. I can't get enough of this song! I'm not actually sure what the "Shave It" bit is supposed to refer to but who cares?! The drop is absolutely wild and just makes you want to go all types of crazy.


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Steve Jobs Tribute

Myomi VS Sandro Silva & Quintino - Sun In My Epic Eyes (Chuckie Respect to Steve Jobs Mash Up)

Of course it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college. But it was very, very clear looking backwards ten years later. Again, you can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

Alright, I wouldn't say I was part of the Steve Jobs is Jesus bandwagon (the man did have his flaws), but he was kind of a big deal. And if he keeps inspiring tribute songs like this, all the more power to him! Still giving the world a slice of happiness even in passing. God bless his soul.

Sweet vocals on this one and really, you can put the Sandro Silva & Quintino beat to ANYTHING and it will sound good. Great mashup!

Download it @ Drop Beats Not Bombs

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