Thursday Brazilian Buffet


They say there’s peace if you can relinquish desire. For me desire’s absence has only left a dull persistent ache. An insistant humming insectile silence. A lonely house in the woods. But perhaps the lesson is that I never relinquished desire, and that’s why there has been no peace. –Leah Stewart

Thursday lunchtime BJJ in Bellevue. Brazilian Buffet- all spars. I was all about the keylocks today, got them repeatedly on multiple people.

It took some fast talking, but I finally got Lindsay back in. She was so worried that she’d get breast milk or pee on me.  I had to reassure her repeatedly that I didn’t care. I brought extra clothes, and both of those things wash off.  It was so nice to work with her again. We did the first spar together and then we did another few at the end. I really hope she gets in more. I miss her.

I was a total weight bully with Amy. I felt bad about it, but I knew that if I tried to go easier on her, she’d tap me every 3 seconds, and that would not please either of us.

Still largely on point with the diet. One Dr Pepper today. I might let myself have one more. I was happy that I was able to perform adequately at class with such a tiny breakfast. The only thing that happened was that I started getting a headache on the way home from class. I thought I had had enough water, but it still might have been dehydration rather than low glucose.

Viewpoints on hunger



In _The Hair Of Harold Roux_, probably the best novel about writing ever published, Thomas Williams offers a striking metaphor, maybe even a parable, for how a story is born. He envisions a dark plain with a small fire burning on it. One by one, people come out of the dark to warm themselves. Each one brings a little fuel, and eventually the small fire becomes a blaze with the characters standing around it, their faces brightly lit and each beautiful in their own way.   -Stephen King
In the wake of gaining 15lb on my antianxiety/insomnia meds (I’ve never been this fat in my life),  I’ve shifted my attitude about hunger.

Hunger is very like pain. A physical sensation that- like pain- can be acknowledged, then ignored, and moved past. I’m really good at pushing through physical pain.

In past dieting attempts, I would eat when the hunger got bad enough- not because I was really giving in to the hunger, but because I was afraid that I would get too tired, muzzy-headed (especially at work or in the car), or nauseous to function. (If I get hungry enough, I get nauseous, and I hate that…) I was particularly anxious that if I didn’t eat decently before BJJ class, I would not be able to perform.

I’m big on the line between pain vs incapacity in MA….. the same line can be applied here. As I acknowledge and dismiss the hunger, I can say to myself,  “I’m going to be really alert now for signs of actual incapacity- ie, muzzy-headedness, nausea, or inability to focus on what needs to be focused on- at which point, I *will* eat.” And that incapacity will be very rapidly reversed with a little food.

I’m also back to those mouse-portions. I’ve noted in the past that it really only takes a disconcertingly tiny amount of food- like 1/3 of a cup- to satisfy my hunger.  My freezer is now stuffed with individual mouse-portions of several different ready-to-go meals.

In the past I’ve tried to do a lot of substitutions- diet pop for regular, fruit and butterless popcorn for candy snacks, that sort of thing. I still feel that substitutions are a great tactic and will continue to use them, but really I have developed a bad habit of just constantly putting things in my mouth, and I need to simply stop putting things in my mouth. Unless it’s the rim of a water glass.

I had 3 Dr Peppers yesterday, but only one the day before, and one the day before that. Very minimal snacking. My assistant brought in banana bread- it was sitting there yesterday and the day before, and I didn’t have a single bite. Snacking on bad things at work has been a particular trouble spot for me, and I need to face that head-on and be strong enough to resist that break-room table.

I’ve lost 6lb so far. I am really determined to get back down to my normal walking-around weight, at least (130-132).  If I can’t get down there, I will consult the doc about changing my meds. But I’m going to try this first.  I have decreased the dosage of my insomnia med because of the persistant nightmares, and now can usually get tolerable sleep on only 1 pill instead of the 3 it was taking before. That may help. I don’t know which of the 2 meds is causing the weight gain, but both of them have that listed among their side effects. At first I was really pissed off and resentful, blaming the meds- and I still am, to some degree- but I quickly saw that that attitude was just facilitating a “screw it” sort of attitude that none of this was my fault and could not be helped, and that is another of my pitfalls- failure to take personal responsibility. Instead I am trying to view the meds as bestowing the vauable superpower of being able to survive on next-to-no food. Embrace that instead of fighting it. It is a good zombie-apocalypse tool.

If I get to 130 and decide to go down to my tournament weight, which is my ideal weight (124), so be it.

The line



The short answer to handling active shooters is shoot back.  –Marc MacYoung

Friday evening BJJ in Bellevue. Same techniques we did Thursday, along with a variation on the sweep where the opponent stands up in your guard. This one involved using a butt-bump to break down one leg, and I struggled with it.

One roll with Doug and one with Cindy. Holy cow! Where else do you get to finish your class with super-fun rolls with two black belts- one who shows you old-man tricks and one who shows you small-woman tricks.  It was fun, exhausting and educational.

Took a decently long walk at Reiter Foothills with the dogs on Saturday, and then went up the Index wall on Sunday. There was still quite a bit of snow once we got into the forest, which made for some struggles with footing as well as struggles trying to stay on the correct path. It was a challenge, but we got to the top. Then coming down…. mama mia. As usual, coming down is LOTS worse for me than going up, and this was the worst it’s ever been. I hope it was just the snow and all, and not my new normal. My knees felt like Ziplock baggies filled with broken glass and thumbtacks. When I got up for work that night, they felt like Ziplock baggies full of broken glass and thumbtacks encased in water balloons that were filled just shy of bursting. The degree of visible swelling at and just above my knees was disturbing. I’ve never seen them like that.

It scared me. I was picturing being older and having them feel like that all the time.

I draw a strong line of distinction between pain versus incapacity.  My knees were bad enough last night that if I had found myself in a situation where I needed to throw down, I fear one or both of them may have mechanically given out. That is two VERY different places…. the place where you say, “this hurts, maybe hurts BAD, but if I need to do X, I can,” versus “I mechanically can NOT make my body do X”.

On the good side, the slight (unrelated) knee injury that was bugging me earlier in the week made it through 2 BJJ classes and 3 hikes without problems.

The hardest part is getting back up.


“This is a beautiful moment we’re having. Can we please fight?” -Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Thursday lunchtime BJJ in Bellevue.

I missed a lot of training the last few weeks…. several holiday closures at the school combined with several extra shifts I picked up at work because I need the money. Also, it has been cold and rainy, which makes me less eager to go out and hike with the dogs. I get out a few times a week using the incentive of scheduling walks with other dog parents- then it’s not as easy to flake out.

Although the prescription sleeping meds have dialed my insomnia back from a severity of 10 on a 1-10 scale to about a 3… sometimes a 2….. I have been having a lot of nightmares. I am going to try scaling back the dosage and see if I can still get to sleep- but with fewer nightmares- on a lower dose. Additionally, the meds have made me gain 10lb. I had been afraid of that- I even told the doc when I first went in, “Please don’t put me on anything that’s going to make me gain a lot of weight,” Well, I NEEDED to get help because the insomnia was bad enough to threaten my ability to function at all, so I guess I’m better off…. but I’m not liking being this heavy.   😦

Another thing- I Britney’ed all my hair off. It’s definitely not my best look, but it’s not going to be in my face while I’m rolling, nor will anyone be putting their elbows or knees down on it. On a practical self-defense front: no hair grabs. On a practical grooming front- washing and drying time is now nil, and my head isn’t cold for hours after a shower.

Opponent stands up in your closed guard. Keep your back on the ground. You grab hir heels, put your feet on hir hipbones, and pull/push. This is one of my favorite things to do on the mat, but now comes the hard part- getting up (LOL).  Keep ahold of the far leg as you swing both of your own legs to one side and move belly down to side control. I found myself, as the uke at this juncture, turning slightly toward the opponent and bending my matward knee, laying the outside of my thigh on the mat, to protect my knee. As the attacker, I note that moving to side control gave you a lovely opportunity to crunch your weight down on that knee as you go by, just in case you are in the type of situation where that would be warrented. Hint- as you move into side control, try to get that far underhook.

Opponent stands up in your closed guard. Keep your back on the ground. You have hir sleeve cuffs. Place your left foot on hir right hip, do an outside hook with your right leg and grab hir heel on that same side. Now move your left foor down to hir knee. You still have one sleeve grip- now yank partner forward with that as you shove the knee back with your foot. That forward yank is key- it won’t work otherwise. As usual, I find myself cheating- or neglecting altogether- pulling motions because I am always so oriented to pushing. Once I get past this block, it’s going to elevate my game dramatically…… right now I’m only doing half the job. There’s almost always a pull *WITH* a push.

Anyway, the uke goes down, and now you put your knee to the floor and yank that sleeve up so you can slide into scarf. Again, do not neglect that underhook.

King Of the Hill: closed guard, pass vs sweep. My work was meh today. I have a leg injury that I’m not sure how I got. It’s worse tonight after BJJ and a dog hike.  I have two longer hikes and one more BJJ class scheduled for this weekend, so I am really hoping it will not get any worse.

One roll with Camille. She’s doing great. Great passes. Sublime pressure in top side control. Needs to work on subs from the top. She could keep me there, but not sub me.