Sometimes it’s Pain.

You know it is the sign of a great class when it is a challenge to get out of bed. It’s a challenge for me to get out of bed every morning anyway since I hate mornings. And, I mean I hate, hate mornings. Like nobody can talk to me for a solid 30 minutes after I drag my grumpy ass out of bed and if they do I only respond in grunts and glares of promised death if they speak to me pre-coffee again.


This morning my body popped and cracked and ouched until I was finally able to stand up in a form that somewhat resembled early man in a zombie apocalypse. Hunch backed, knuckles dragging the floor, wobbly, a little bit of a foot drag situation going on with every step. It was rough.

I would love to tell you that after I got up and moving around and drank my magic bean juice that helps me tolerate people coffee I felt better. Big nope. I sit here completely immobile with the exception of my typing fingers and my body is still screaming at me.

“WTF did you do to me, Allison!?” my body says.

I’m not bitching about the soreness, just poking fun at it while trying to paint a picture for the reader. I see it as proof that I got out there. And, I’ve learned that sometimes that proof can come in some pretty gnarly forms. Sometimes it’s a nasty bruise (or two or three or twenty.)


Sometimes it’s pain. Sometimes it’s soreness. Sometimes it’s blood.


Sometimes it’s a gi that is so soaked in sweat that it feels like it weighs 20 lbs.  Sometimes it’s exhaustion. Sometimes, a lot of times, it’s defeat and failure.


It’s all proof that I’m doing something that challenges me and forces me to become a better me, a tougher me.

I like that.

I think you have to like it and welcome it to become your best BJJ self. You have to teach yourself to power through all of that, to not let it stop you. I’ve never done anything else in my life that teaches you to fight through the pain, both during and after, like BJJ does. It teaches you to be a survivor, someone that refuses to give up.


I remember in my first few months of BJJ how much I couldn’t take pressure. Someone would get me in side control with decent pressure and I would tap. I don’t do that anymore. I’ve learned that it’s painful, it’s not pleasant at all, it sometimes feels you are suffocating, but as long as I relax and remember to breath, I can handle it.

I remember how I used to panic with chokes and think that because it was painful I should tap. I’ve learned that if I can relax and find a way to relieve enough pressure that I won’t go to sleep, that I can handle it.

BJJ is teaching me, sometimes in very painful ways, that I can handle a lot more than I once thought possible. I sit here in pain, and still, I’m looking forward to the next class.

BJJ “Focus on the Positive” Challenge, Day 6 – One of my biggest setbacks has been my shyness and social fears. A lot of times that meant me sitting against the wall, afraid to make the move and ask someone to roll. I also didn’t really interact or speak to a lot of people. I feel like one of my biggest improvements has been putting myself out there socially more and not shying away from asking people to roll. Because of that I’m able to get more rounds in. Last night it resulted in five 7:00 minute rounds with no breaks. Progress!

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