Should I Compete Again in Japan?
July 2017 will mark three years since we moved to Japan. It also marks the month that we will be moving back to Virginia. As many of you already know, I’ve been very involved in both Judo and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Since moving to Japan in the summer of 2014, I’ve competed fairly regularly in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. For a while, it seemed like I was competing about every other month.
Copa Bull Terrier Tournament.
I had competed in many Judo tournaments in the last several years but this was the first Jiu Jitsu tournament that I had competed in since 2009. I was nervous, but I was also excited. Even though I took third place, which I was a little disappointed with, it ignited the competition fire in me.
My work schedule encompasses 12 hour shifts and every other weekend. So I can’t compete or train nearly as much as I want to. Needless to say, I train as often and compete as often as I can. I’ve had the fortune to compete in some big tournaments while in Japan such as the De La Riva Open and the Asian Open (an IBJJF tournament).
Not only have I competed in Japan, but I’ve competed in the Philippines and in Korea. I did ok in these tournaments, but never as well as I wanted to, or as well as I thought I should have done. Most of this, I attributed to being inconsistent in my training because of my hectic work schedule. That’s when the doubt started creeping in. I felt that could have and should have beaten a lot of the opponents that I lost to. Intellectually, I knew it was because of my inconsistency with training but, emotionally, I threw the doubt door wide open and walked right through it.
Slowly, I began to skip more and more practices. Finding excuses not to train. I quit looking for tournaments to compete in. I began to seriously doubt my abilities and techniques and I even began to question whether I even deserved the blue belt that was around my waist. It’s been close to a year now since I’ve competed. With my transfer back to the states looming, and my lack of training, I decided that I wouldn’t compete again until I returned to the states.
Well, now I’m down to three months left in Japan, and I feel like I want to compete one last time before I leave. Here’s my dilema. I haven’t been training, and my cardio has gone to Sh*t. I’ve gained weight, which is a struggle in and of itself, but I still feel that urge. The questions that I have are, is there enough time left to get competition ready and is it really worth setting myself up for failure again? I don’t think it’s enough time, but I’d love your input.
I think I’m going to do it. I’m going to attempt to document the next couple of months. I’m looking to compete in the East Japan Jiu Jitsu Tournament on May 28th. So come along on the journey with me, and see whether I fail or succeed.