Ana Yagües BJJ

BJJ Blog

09/17
2013

Last stage... what to do now?

34th week of pregnancy. I stopped training BJJ 4 weeks ago at the 30th week. I haven’t wore my Gi for 4 weeks now and I miss it badly. But the size of my belly makes impossible to continue practicing BJJ.

The belly is not only in between me and my training partner, but it is also in between my right and left arm, my upper and lower body. It is in the middle of everything.

Many times I didn’t feel the belly, you get used to it, so when I was sitting on the mat in one of my last trainings, listening to the trainer explaining the technique, to the command “let’s try” I was so ready to start practicing as everybody else, forgetting for a moment about my pregnancy but falling back into reality in the very moment I try to stand up. The small movement of bending your upper body over to get up reminded me quickly that it was not so easy when you have about 6-7kg concentrated on a single spot, right in the middle of your body. Not to talk about trying to do the technique itself.

I said, I would continue as long as I can. Well, the moment had reached in which I couldn’t any more.... at least not actively on the mat.

But what do I do now, except for eating Ben&Jerrys 24/7? 

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I had two options: 

  • Stop and do nothing for the last 2 months. Yes, it is perfectly acceptable. I have nothing to prove, I have been training up to the 7th month and now it is time to relax and get ready for the arrival of the baby
  • I find another way to stay into the BJJ. Anyway, having maternity leave I have plenty of hours at day to do both: relax and get ready for the baby, and do something for my body.

Guess which option I chose....

 

And what exactly do I do?:

  • I keep working on the grips. You can do it in the gym or there is even an easier way to do it that you can even do from your coach while watching your favorite movie (see pics)

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  • I swim. It is the most (probably the only)  recommended sport by the doctors at the late stage of pregancy. It is actually great because it uses both arms and legs, it is low-impact, almost zero risk of injury and provides with good cardiovascular benefits.

Why don't simply relax and do nothing? For several reasons, first because I like it, I enjoy doing sports and be fit. Second, because as I explained in my last post, being fit helps to have a healthier pregnancy and a good delivery and third, because you wonder why I got back to the mats so quickly after my first child, so probably one of the reasons was that I stayed out of it for less than 7-8 weeks, which makes "easier" (that not easy!)  the recovery

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  • I watch training sessions, videos, work as referee in competitions, coach... summarizing: try to keep my mind on a good shape and my body as much as possible.

Why? Because I have been training BJJ for more than 6 years, so I am quite confident that I will remember how to do a triangle or an armbar when I get back on the mat after delivery, but BJJ ist extremely sophisticated, the variety of techniques is amazing as you all know, the details to each technique countless... The mental game plays a very important role when being a good fighter (there is a reason why they called it human chess), and if you don’t train it, you forget.

It is like math. You have probably not forgotten how to count, sum or subtract because you do it in a daily basis (even if sometimes you are not aware of it). But at least you work with it everyday, you have probably forgotten how to differentiate functions, calculate roots or solve easy integrals. Same applies here.

That is the reason why I keep watching videos, fights, training sessions, so that I don’t get “rusty” and when the time arrives to come back, I can focus on getting my body on shape, because my mind never was out. 

And don't forget, if you plan in a clever way your time, there is plenty of it for everything ;)


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