Last night, I arrived a little late to class. When I entered, the guys were in the middle of a striking session with the pads. It turns out that Big “J” will be fighting in his first MMA match this Saturday. Big “J” is a rare specimen. He is 6’4 or 6’6 (he said he forgets) and weighs 205 lbs (all muscle). However, he looks like he weighs 225. He’s strong like a heavyweight, but limber like a 145 pounder. The instructor has two locations that he teaches in and Big “J” goes to both.
Well, last night they wanted me to simulate ground and pound and have Big “J” work from his back. So, I kid you not, we went 10-4 minute rounds with a minute in between and a 4 minute break between rounds 4 and 5 and 8 and 10. We started with Big “J” on his back and me on top in side control. I was told to go at 40% and to make sure I didn’t cut J’s face with elbows or the gloves. From the first ringing of the bell, 40% was out the window.
Without having to worry about getting hit back, I dropped elbows, knees, soft to mid-range hard punches and went for submissions. My mission was to stay on top. Which didn’t last long. However, each time I stayed on much longer and since we kept restarting so much I picked up a few of the tricks he uses to get out of side control and the mount. I’ll try them on someone else later.
I was thoroughly exhausted and pushed through the last four rounds because I knew he needed to have someone heavy work with him. But it also let me know that I could push past limits that I have set in my mind. Since I knew it was benefiting him for me to work hard it made me push past what I thought were my boundaries. I think last night’s session help give me perspective for my future sparring sessions.