Do you feel like you have hit a wall in your training?

Don’t worry it happens to everyone. Try these two helpful tips:

1. Admit that you’re not a professional and seek out the advice of a professional.

2. Change your environment and the people you surround yourself with. Most of the time we keep people close to us which ultimately set ourselves up for failure and are left wondering why.The problem with both of these is most people don’t want to admit the harsh truth that they are currently living. 95% of those who claim to be professionals are lying to themselves and the people around them! That’s not to say they are not talented, just saying that they are not a professional.

Here’s a great example for the BJJ community:
Meaning of a professional jiu-jitsu athlete in my opinion:

Someone who makes a living at training and competing in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu events.

You are not a professional jiu-jitsu player if you compete in BJJ but make living teaching classes, private lessons, paid online technique videos, or seminars. Now that’s not to say that you can not do any of these things while being a professional athlete, but we have to be honest with what we are doing with our lives. If we ever plan on truly being “all in” and working toward our goal.

For Judo athletes this usually comes from the phrase “I’m training for the Olympics.”

Judo players all over the United States talk about how they are or have trained for the Olympic Games with no real opportunity to even make the team. Even now, I still run into people all the time who say “yeah wasn’t that person training for the Olympics? They’re really good.” But in reality, those athletes cannot win the Grand Prix medal and they normally are ranked pretty low (40 or below) on the World Ranking List.

The embellishment of the truth is something that plagues every athlete in every sport – not just martial arts/grappling. I firmly believe that making someone think or believe they are something they are not only hindering their development. Muhammad Ali said “fake it till you make”, OK fine, prove everyone wrong, I am all for that. But just make sure you understand what you truly want to achieve. We also have to understand the full commitment of achieving said goal. Athletes like Ali, worked day and night to become the greatest boxer that ever lived. Yet some “professionals” work a full-time day job and train. It is a catch 22, in order to be a professional athlete you need to eat, sleep, dream, and bleed that sport. Nothing else.

I like when athletes are honest with me as it lets me know how I’m supposed to treat them on the mat.  How you push an athlete trying to be Olympic/World Champion is a lot different than someone just trying to be National Champion. Setting realistic goals for ourselves and milestones is a great way to gauge success and development. Know your limits, know your timeline decided if it’s what you want!


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