19
Feb
09

Conditioning as an Attribute

Maybe I should have titled this “Conditioning as the most important attribute”.

While I was healing up some injuries at the end of last year, I gave a great deal of thought to attributes that I needed to add or improve upon personally to improve my game (flexibility, mobility, etc).   What didn’t come up at the time, and what I think now is probably the most important of those is conditioning.  This was illustrated to me this past Monday when I was training with my friend Ben, who is a BB and who at the age of 45 also has a few years on me.  Ben is a machine, and the guys we train with all know that he works hard to be in shape and love to train long and drag people to deep water.  Anyway, we set up to roll and at one point we hit an extended scramble, multiple position changes and submission attempts (by him) in a very short period of time, somehow ending up with me in a very good position to attack.

…and I was too tired to do anything about it.  I knew what I needed to do, knew that it had been effective with him in the past, and just didn’t have it in me to execute.  In that brief second while I hesitated he escaped and I paid twice the price in energy defending before he finally caught me.  It got me to thinking:

How often does fatigue keep me from doing what I know I should be doing (especially escaping from or fighting to avoid bad positions)?

and

Was I really that tired?

Now don’t get me wrong, I’ve been happy with my cardio, especially for a big guy, but the simple reality is that if we are truly pushing ourselves, we are all going to get tired at a point….if we don’t we’re not pushing ourselves. That being said, I’ve been thinking about this for three days now and I’ve come to believe that one of the absolute best things I can do to improve my technique when I am rolling is to improve my conditioning.  Not in the absence of technique work, mind you, because we are all going to fatigue no matter how hard we condition ourselves, but simply put, the better conditioned I am, the more opportunity I will have to use, and properly execute the techniques I am learning and practicing (i.e. improving my ability to practice effectively).

Note :  I think this holds even more true for larger trainees, as the more tired we get the more likely we are to try and muscle/ move our opponent on many techniques where we are the ones who should be moving.

Fight Harder!  Fight Longer!

Tactical Nutrition

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