If there is anything we have learned this year, is that everything can change in an instant. The daily routine that you were so bored of, was rapidly altered and all of a sudden, you wanted things the way they used to be. We have also learned that the jiu-jitsu community is incredibly stubborn.
With the sudden change, businesses like jiu-jitsu gyms all across the globe had to either adapt or perish. Hardcore competitors and hobbyists alike were feeling like Ricky Bobby in Talladega Nights.
This new phenomenon called Zoom swooped in to save us all. Professors and Coaches made the switch to online classes in order to retain a bit of normalcy. Some gyms shut down completely for a couple of months, others turned to Zoom, limited capacity training, no-contact training (HOW FUN), and some were just NOT having it and started hosting secret fight clubs in their garages.
But let’s not talk about that...
C’mon, for those that have done this long enough, we know that it is the most unforgiving sport there is. Taking months off and you might as well sign a death sentence. Aside from the fact that there’s truly nothing like watching the air slowly leave your friend’s body as you sink a choke in just a little bit more by the second, feeling a tap, and then proceeding to be best pals. You just cannot get that feeling with a training dummy made out of a kimono and pillows.
For those that chose to not to continue training during these past months, there has to be a realistic expectation for when things clear up and you are able to attend the afternoon pajama parties again. Have you packed up a couple pounds? Did you work out/drill during the quarantine to prevent muscle memory loss? Or did the comfort of the sedentary life get to you and now you are out of fight shape?
The best thing you can do is BE HONEST WITH YOURSELF.
So, you didn’t make the best choices during your time away from the mats. MOVE ON and get back to work.
If you’re no longer in fight shape/weight, if you finished all what Netflix had to offer instead of working out at home, DO NOT go back to the gym and try to pick up where you left off. Remember that the body keeps score and it will not lie to you when you try to go 10 rounds at World Championship speed on the first day back. Not to mention you are setting yourself up for immediate injuries.
Take it day by day, slow and steady, one more round each day until we get back to the #EverydayPorrada level.
We are not exactly sure of what else 2020 will throw at us. Most things seem out of control nowadays, but what we can control is the way we respond. Perhaps we may convince the government that Jiu-Jitsu gyms are essential, perhaps not. Whatever the case may be for the remainder of this pandemic, we know there is no exact substitute for live training at the gym with all your teammates, but when life gives you lemons... sometimes you have to bust out the salt and the tequila and keep rolling.