805BJJ Class 79: separating an arm from north-south, kimura, arm bar, rolling, 4th stripe

October 17th, 2017

My 2nd class back in BJJ. Lots of Mark talking. We did a typical warm up, then congrats to Cosmo for helping with Stranger Danger yesterday, then a quick, light, warm-up roll with Matt (who is also a 3 stripe white belt like me).

After that, coach Mark called out Colt to challenge for blue belt. He paired him up with blue belt Dave, and they went at it for 6 minutes. Colt had just come back from Texas, where he was helping people recover from the flood there, so he was not in top form, but he survived for 6 minutes. Then he was immediately paired with Andrew, who submitted him from kesa gatame with an Americana. Colt will be able to challenge again next Tuesday for blue belt.

Greggo taught us how to scoop up an arm from north-south, with heavy chest pressure pushing them over while windshield wipering your arm under their elbow. Get a monkey figure 4 grip on that arm, then step over the head to kneel with your junk teabagging them. Step your back foot up to keep them tipped on their side, and at the same time clamp their upper arm to your chest and deadlift their arm up. If they’re holding their belt and won’t let the arm up, you can get more leverage by sitting on their head and leaning back for the arm bar.

Then we rolled. I started with Matt, and we had a competitive roll. I jammed my right big toe on the mat, however, and it aches. I just had that thing fixed, and now I’m messing it up again already.

My next roll was with Dave, and I was able to get on top and keep attacking throughout.

Then I rolled with Colt, who started coaching me again on my guard pass. I was trying the standing pass as done by Rick, but I got the grips wrong, and he told me just fold his legs down and lean over for the pass. It normally doesn’t work that easy, but if he’s going to give it to me under the guise of coaching, so be it. So I got side control. He tried coaching me more, but I told him I was going for the move of the day, isolated his arm, and got to the part where you have to deadlift it, but he wouldn’t let go. I sat down for the arm bar but didn’t put enough pressure on his head and he was able to get his legs involved and the round ended with me inverted and holding his arm in that figure 4 monkey palm grip. Next time I will not leave so much space.

My last roll was with Andrew and his new blue belt. He tried to get me with the same takedown he used on Colt during the challenge, but I took his back, rubbing my ear all the way across the back of his gi. Coach Mark said “It’s good for you!” and I responded “Toughens up the cartillage!” Andrew and I then had a competitive round.

I went the whole class without being submitted, and threatening submissions of my own for most of the time. I was conserving my energy, using my weight to my advantage, and usually had pretty good awareness of my position. Even when Andrew or Matt was smashing me, I stayed calm and was usually able to sweep them.

After class, coach Mark awarded several people another stripe, including me! Also including Colt, which was funny. 6 stripe white belt is your coach’s way of telling you that you suck at BJJ. Haha! Anyway, 3 1/2 months, 16 classes since my 3rd stripe. The first stripe took me 21 classes, and the 2nd one took me 33 classes. At that rate, it would have taken me 44 classes to get my third stripe, but I did it in only 9 classes. At that rate, I would have gotten my 4th stripe in, er, well it’s hard to infer a rate from such an oscillating signal, but 3/63 is about one stripe per 21 classes, so 16 classes is faster than average. That second stripe was by far the most difficult.

Krav Maga Class 116: Saranya quits BJJ, epic warmup, epic tombstone punching, bob and counter, epic sparring, plank bananas to the end

October 14th, 2017

Today was the day that Saranya quit BJJ. I am disappoint.

Curtis’ Saturday morning class started with running. And more running. It felt like NASCAR. I was getting dizzy. We phased into shoulder tag, alternating with different exercises.

Once that was over, we partnered up and grabbed a tombstone pad. We did three rounds of straight punches or palm strikes alternating with flurries of the same. I paired with Eric Maas and we explored the limits of his cardio. We also discovered that my palm strikes are a lot harder than my punches, because I don’t need to stabilize my wrist or align my knuckles for palm strikes.

After we were both worn out, we got focus mitts and practiced bobbing under a right hook, then added a left hook counter, until we were almost dead.

Then we put on headgear and got down to sparring. 40-50% power. I started against Eric, and we both knocked each other’s heads around a bit. Then I paired up with Ray, and he got a lecture from Curtis about not just playing tag, but landing solid punches. After that I went against Calvin, Daniel, Richard, and Ivan. Saranya said I did pretty good, and against the smaller and less experienced guys, I did. However, I got chewed up by Eric and Ivan. I was able to hold my own against Eric for some of the time, but Ivan’s a lot better than me, and he staggered me with a body shot as I was getting too aggressive.

805BJJ Class 78: standing guard pass a la Rick, rolling

October 12th, 2017

My first time back since my first time back! Two training sessions since June and it’s about time I got back into the gi and onto the mat. I knew the excuses would just get easier and easier if I didn’t go, so I just went. Almost forgot my mouth guard. Did forget my knee pads. Oh well.

Greggo taught this Thursday morning class. I guess he’d taught the material at last night’s class, so he decided to do it again for us since we hadn’t been there. It was a lot of the stuff that Rick had taught me in the past, about standing to open the guard, sitting low to freeze the free leg while elbow-to-knee framing on a deep step to freeze the other leg, grip the other leg side lapel, and then you can pass to either side.

Rolling went well for about 7 minutes. Then I ran out of energy and strength and I got submitted a couple times. Then Cowboy got his first blue belt stripe and it was over. I went home with sore obliques and a few mat burns on my feet and ankles.

Krav Maga Class 115: lungemania, getting punched in the face lessons, epic level 1 choke drills, outside chokes in a chair

October 7th, 2017

Pam taught this Saturday morning class. We started with running around, shuffling inside and outside, high knees and buttkickers. Then we switched to lunges around the mat. After that was across the mat and back with inchworms, lunges with knees, and side lunges with pivots. Loads of lunges, but I was the first finished most every time across. I pushed myself hard and paid for it afterward, but that’s how it goes. At least I didn’t get dizzy like last week.

After that, we put in our mouth guards and took turns punching each other in the face. I paired up with Corey, and he went easy on me, so I went easy on him too. We did a session of 5 for 5 to the face, then 5 for 5 to the body, then 5 for 5 kicks to the upper legs and to the body. Easy.

After that we split the class in half (actually a group of 5 and a group of 6 with me in it). We took turns with one victim and the rest attackers, applying level 1 chokes and the defenses, for about 3 minutes each. Even going slow and light, it was very tiring. I went 2nd, and it took me halfway through round 3 to recover.

When that was done, we went out back with chairs and simulated being attacked from behind while sitting, and trying to apply the principles of the defenses even in a disadvantaged position and caught by surprise.

Krav Maga Class 114: shadow boxing, ground and pound, knee on belly, thai pads, rnc defense, gun defenses

September 30th, 2017

Christian taught this Saturday morning class, and it was a doozy. We started with a shadow boxing circuit alternating ground and pound, guard and pound, and knee on belly flurries with a kick shield on the ground. Then the thai pads with combos, adding in an overhand right knockdown followed by knee on belly ground and pound, then a padholder knockdown followed by guard and pound with a get-up at the end. I was dying.

After that was headlock defenses review, getting ready for a rear naked choke defense lesson. We went through all the steps alone, then got in a group. It went fine. The drill at the end had us doing rolls for a minute followed by a back attack. Not bad, but my lungs seemed to lack the proper capacity to feed my brain with oxygen. I still have a cough from GENCON 50.

At the end we did gun defenses from the front, using either left or right hand to deflect the gun. Then we went to the front tables and used the tables as part of the disarm. Apparently if you drag a guy’s hand between the gun and a table, it hurts like hell and they can’t hold onto the gun. Then we did gun defenses across the kids room viewing window, as if we were sitting in a car, and used the window frame to assist in disarming the gunman.

Krav Maga Class 113: thai pad combos, sparring

September 23rd, 2017

Brandon’s Saturday morning class. I’m trying to remember this after a week, because I’ve been taking care of my dad and he’s a downright bastard to care for. We started with shadow boxing and shoulder tag, did some thai pad work, did some kick combos, and then did some full contact sparring.

Krav Maga Class 112: cardio, front, round, turning-back-kicks, pad mount and stomp sprint

September 16th, 2017

Curtis’ Saturday morning class, and the first one since my dad came to live with me. We started out with a TON of cardio, and my bronchitis was inflamed. Then we worked on kicks (front/round/turning-back) with a little bit of live look drill on the turning back kick at the end. The finale was kick shield mounting, destroying it and alternately standing and stomping.

Dad – the new resident dependent

September 10th, 2017

My dad has come to live at my house. He can’t take care of himself, so someone else has to do it. That “someone else” turns out to be me, right now. He can’t afford boarding care until he can get rental income from his house, and he can’t rent his house until we clean it up and clear it out. In the mean time, he’s living in my house, sleeping in Saranya’s bed, slowly learning the names of the people who live here, and requiring my assistance at random times. That leaves me unable to concentrate on anything for more than a few minutes. I’m always on edge, and nothing is fun. Constant stress.

Our weekends will be spent cleaning and emptying his house. There is so much urgency to this task. Maybe it will lessen as we hire some nursing assistance, but so far that’s prohibitively expensive. Sangeeta seems to like having him here, but that’s because she isn’t responsible for taking care of him 24/7 like I am. I’m sure he likes it better here than in a nursing facility, so we’ll see if we can swing it. Maybe a day nurse will be sufficient assistance to get us back to a manageable state.

We’ll see.

At least the crud I took home from GENCON is finally fading.

Krav Maga Class 111: shadow boxing, thai pad combos, front/side kick combo, scissor kick, light sparring

September 9th, 2017

Brandon had laryngitis for his Saturday morning class. My first class in a month and second in 2 months. My chronic bronchitis has started to clear up so I decided to take a risk and jump in.

Warm up was easy. I went light on the thai pad combos, swapping John in and Susan out as a training partner. He coached me to keep a tighter line for the front/side kick combo. I worked on my recoil and balance for the scissor kick.

Sparring at the end with no head gear, mainly targeting the body with the techniques focused in the class. It was *very* light and I did fine.

GENCON 50

August 21st, 2017

I flew out to Indy to hang out with Castor for GENCON 50!

The flight out was nice. Direct on Southwest. I spent most of the time writing my thoughts on improvements to our sequencing algorithm to better take into account the information we have regarding the user’s learning strength for a particular item.

Castor’s house was in a state of renovation. Wet paint and no mirror in the guest bathroom, so I ended up showering in Castor’s shower for all but the last day.

GENCON was fun. On Thursday we wandered the vendor floor before finding our game, which was a RPG based on the old City of Heroes MMO. It was fun. I was “Tech Support” the tech tank. Whenever I entered a battle, I yelled “Tech Support is here. What is your Customer Identification Number?” and they’d all try to attack me. It was funny.

Friday was a free day. We again wandered the vendor floor, ate some Island Noodles, and in the evening we went to Castor’s boss’ house (Matt) for their regular Pathfinder campaign. I played a mercenary named Cevalla who was formerly a caravan guard but was laid off once the caravan hit town. The first couple hours were an exercise in shopping and trivia, and I was stunned by the lack of wisdom on display. My proudest moment was when I cracked a situational joke in character that cracked up the entire table. That felt good.

First thing Saturday morning, we went to another Pathfinder game. This one was an advanced Legends of the Shining Jewel campaign that we were definitely not qualified for, so they redirected us to the noob table, let us choose a premade level 1 character, and set us off to save the beer festival at the town of Brexton. It was simple and easy. We took more damage from our 2nd level fighter’s critical fumbles than we did from the enemy.

The rest of Saturday was spent shopping for stuff. Then we went home and I talked with Sangeeta, and she made me feel horrible. I didn’t want to go home to that tempest of chaos and pain.

Sunday was just a shopping day. Got coffee in the morning and felt so much better. My optimism returned. We left early and stopped by an authentic Mexican restaurant for lunch, complete with shrink wrapped TVs blasting Ranchero Pop, a bunch of shouting dirty local Mexican workers, an adjacent carniceria, and a real crawly cockroach crawling on the bar. We went back to Castor’s place and ended the day with a Dungeon Crawl board game, which Carla won (of course).

I left Castor’s house on Monday morning, had a moderately leisurely breakfast, made a quick stop at Starbucks for a coffee, spent a bit of time in traffic on the way to the airport, spent 20 minutes to check my suitcase, 15 minutes to get through security, and missed my flight by one minute.