I just got interviewed

I just got off the phone with Dr. Jerry Beasley (also here, though it’s an older article), who’s the driving force behind Karate College down here every year. I’ve known Dr. Beasley since I was a kid and even took a class from him when I was younger. He’s also associated with our academy.

He’s writing a column/article for Tae Kwon Do Times (I think? It’s a TKD magazine, but that’s all I really remember) on women and MMA, so he stopped in tonight to get my phone number so he could interview me (seeing as I’m the only female currently doing any MMA/BJJ at the academy). He hadn’t known that I’d done TKD for 7.5 years as well, and so that only made me a better candidate to interview.

He had a list of questions (that his wife helped him with!), and we talked about what it’s like to be so much smaller than everyone else, how the guys treat me (especially new guys), what’s the most fun, what to look for in an MMA academy, and what’s different between MMA and TKD. We talked about why MMA training is better for self-defense than what you’ll get in a Traditional Martial Art (TMA) — size difference, contact level, and the fact that MMA is not limited to just standing. And my “anything else to add” to encourage women to start training MMA: it will get you in the best shape of your life.

Tehe! He’ll let me know when the article comes out, maybe a month or two, and I’ll then let you know.

Oi, I still feel like a stuffed turkey! Note to self: next time you take a long break from classes, please do some lifting and/or running. Kthxbai.

Another short warmup that still kicked my butt. Adam led it, and he likes to make stuff up as he goes along. So jogging, high knees, butt kicks, lunges, bear crawl, side-to-side, army crawls, reverse bear crawl (!). Then lined up around the mat, up on our hands and toes; starting at one end, jump over one then army crawl under the next, all the way around. Then Tim took over and had us do 20 pushups, 20 knees-to-chest and 20 burpees; I had to drag my burpees back to the wall to finish while the guys started on single leg/sprawl. Got only one trip in of those (my left wrist is still funny about being landed on, and that shoulder what also acting up), and only one trip on alligators. That might’ve been it…

Then we partnered up. Sundance and I started to partner up, but Tim said, “Someone your own size,” so he was going to switch with someone, but there’s really no one smaller so Tim waved us back together. Somewhere in the drilling, Sundance mentioned that he’s at about 180 right now (I’m 130). And at some point I noticed that he suddenly seemed tall, and I remarked on that. He said he’s 5’10”, to which I said, “Wait, what?!” So he stood up completely straight, and I barely came up to his chin. He said he usually slouches when he stands, plus when he’s in class he’s trying to get down low anyway. … … Note to self: Everybody’s bigger than you think they are (and you’re smaller than you think you are).

We worked the sacrifice throw from last night first for a while and then worked a single-leg with hooking the leg, similar to the one from last night. Tim came over to work with me on that one; seems my body was either leading with my foot, to hook, or with my head (to get guillotined!). Brain has it; signals just not reaching the body at the same time. Something to work on…

We drilled those both for a long time, most of class. Then Tim called for us to roll with the same partner.

I was really trying not to get on the bottom, though that didn’t work, or to transition through a turtle to escape. Didn’t work so well, either. I did have a few switches in a row, trying to get under and around, but couldn’t get enough pressure or far enough through with my position to actually get out. Tried to roll a couple of times, but he already had my hips controlled and then just put his weight on my hips and squashed ’em to the mat. He got my back, so I went for Saulo’s scoop escape; he turned that in to a reverse triangle and then tried to kneebar me. Got my legs away, but had no leverage to escape the triangle, which he tightened up once he lost my legs. He also got the same elbow variation clock choke that I caught on Mark last night. Mostly stuck under mount, with some moments of half guard (usually right before he passed and went to mount). Did have one follow up armbar defense that seemed to work decently well.

One more round, with Steve. He wanted armbars, and I like my arms myself, thank you very much. So defending several armbars. Trying to remember Saulo’s advice about stacking to the side, so their knees are pinned to the floor. Makes it some easier, but I still have to break the grips on my sleeves. Meh. Did some good. Managed to creep in on his open guard and get to half guard; got his far lapel end and started for the same gi D’Arce I’d pulled off last night. He fought to defend that, though, and gave up the mount instead. He bump swept me from under mount (Is that even possible?!); trying for scissor sweep, but I couldn’t get his weight forward enough and he was dumping as much weight on that leg as he could so I couldn’t kick through. Thought about switching to the pendulum, but I would’ve swept him in to the wall then, and that’s just not nice. Lots of blurry bits… I got in front of his open guard again, still along the wall, and actually got past and to side control (because I remember my feet were braced off the wall, lol). Got swept over; he got side control and was trying to pry my arm out for the armbar; I got some hook somewhere and tipped him backward (“dead angle” — I remember, Saulo). That happened twice, I think. I dunno. I think we ended with a long period of me trying to pass his open guard without getting triangled.

So done. So tired. So sluggish. Pooh.

Then, I’d seen this John Will video today (saw it on Dev’s blog earlier today and watched it at work) and wanted to at least try it since it looked easy enough — one underhook, one overhook, go to the overhook side, drop weight on their head. Got Steve to let me try it. They really flip over easy peasy. He said it was tight and he couldn’t do anything, even once I’d flipped him over. Didn’t try the second one, though, with the belt; looked a little more complicated than I felt I could pull off.

I did sign up for the Sub Only VI last night. So at least I am going. A couple of the guys are trying to make up their minds. Probably one, maybe two (or even three or four), will be coming up with me. I don’t feel ready at all — I’m out of shape, overweight, and all banged up. Plus it’ll be my first competition at blue belt. Ai! But, that means that I can’t put any pressure on myself and can just go and see what blue belt competitors feel like. And with four divisions (gi, gi absolute, nogi, nogi absolute), I’ll get at least four matches. Hard to beat that.

I’ve found that I don’t like cutting weight. Nyuh-uh. I’m still hovering too close to 130 for comfort and so am trying to stay strict about my eating and water. But I like food too much. All food, any food. Put food in front of me and I’ll eat it. Not even usually terribly picky. One of my co-workers brought chocolate-coconut-nut bars to work today. I despise coconut, but I ate them anyway! Dang it! (Who puts a tournament the week after Thanksgiving anyway? 😛 )

Our outsourced testers have finally gotten into the spirit of marking a test FAIL when it fails. Maybe a little too much: I’m finding several marked as FAIL that did, in fact, pass. All steps are checked as Pass (and double-checking confirms this), yet the test is marked FAIL. *headdesk* They’re supposed to be making my job easier

4 thoughts on “I just got interviewed

  1. Cool, I look forward to the article! Hopefully you’ll be able to stick chunks of it up here.

    Also interested to hear what the Submission Only experience is like (have you done one already and I just missed it?), especially at the blue belt level.

    I don’t normally take that much interest in posts about competitions, but it’s a little different with no time limits or points. 😉

  2. I love that turtle roll – I’m still working on controlling the scramble afterward, though… what Master Will shows in the video isn’t what happens when I do it – I generally end up in a big mess and have to be faster to get on top. But the surprise of going upside down generally startles people enough that I can pull it off. 🙂 Let me know if you discover any tips that will help!

    And good luck with the Sub Only! Let us know how it goes!

  3. @slidey: Yep, done it before, back in July: writeups here and here, and pictures/video here. It is a lot of fun. Sure, someone can try to hold you down for five minutes, but it doesn’t do them any good. It’s funny, though — as soon as points are taken away, I’m actively scoring the match in my head, lol.

    @Dev: I like the element of surprise. 😛

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