Today marks my six-month anniversary of beginning BJJ. It is important to note that a couple of periods I didn't train. Once, for two weeks because of military commitments and then again for a week when I was sick. So, it isn't my "six months of trainging" mark, but six months since I first took the plunge. In that time, I've learned so much. I had some experience with Army combatives...but holy damn. I didn't know how inadequate it was in comparison with BJJ. In combatives' defense, it isn't designed to be a sport. It isn't designed to fight with somebody who knows jiu jitsu. Even as a one-stripe white belt, I'm light years above what most Army people are in the realms of grappling.
When I first got there, I wasn't sure I wanted to stick with it. The club actually made a bad impression, but I came back and grew to enjoy it immensley. The group there has grown to become my friends, and I respect them all immensley. Everybody puts a lot into training, and everybody is cognizant of their limits. No body has ever really gotten injured badly in training. That said, everybody is tough as nails. As one of our senior blue belts once said, "There are no easy rolls in this group. Even our white belts make us sweat."
One of my focuses the last few months is defense. I've gotten fairly good at it. I don't get tapped out very often any more, but I still get put in bad positions regularly. I've gotten to where I can survive in very bad positions (say in the mount of a 300-lb beast!). I'm still not very good at escapes when dealing with people like that. People who are around my weight class I can escape and obtain guard...but I still have trouble with big guys.
I've decided that I should come up with some goals to help guide my training in the next few months.
Goal 1: Train moar!
Self Explanatory. I have only been averaging two days a week. Sometimes I manage to get in three, but sometimes I only go once. I think I'd be a beast if I just trained more.
Goal 2: Escapes
Like I said, I'm decent with escapes against people my own size or smaller. Big guys still dominate me. They usually can't tap me, but they shouldn't dictate the whole fight like that. Anyways, escaping is a fundamental skill that you should always try to build upon.
Goal 3: Weight Loss.
I'm floating at around 170. I'd like to get down to 155.
Goal 4: Build my top game
I've noticed that I'm much better on the bottom than I am the top. I think this is probably something that goes for most BJJ newbies, but I want to start becoming more well rounded
Goal 5: Refine the Omoplata
I've mentioned before that the omoplata has been my best submission so far. I have an affinity for it, and I don't know why. We've never even really trained them in my time there, I just got showed how to do it during rolling. I want to keep using it, because its a devastating submission, and if not its a good sweep.
Goal 6: Develop more submissions
Like I said, a lot of my submissions come from the omoplata. I want to work on developing other submissions to become more well rounded. I know generally how to do a wide variety of submissions, but I don't know a lot of set ups or technical details to really pull them off.
Goal 7: Do a tournament
Because experience is the best teacher.
Anyways, I have so many more goals, but I don't want to ramble. I am just going to keep studying, training, and do what I can to get better. I struggle with chronic fatigue syndrome, so I don't think I'll ever be what I should be. I'll never meet my max potential...but I can do what I can. Anyways, feel free to comment and leave feedback on what goals and aspirations you have.