How to Be Your Best in Life and On the Mats

How to Be Your Best in Life and On the Mats

Life moves at a breakneck pace.  Between school, careers, and family responsibilities there can sometimes seem to be very little time for activities or hobbies like BJJ.  There always seems to be something pulling us away from activities the world may see as frivolous.  This also goes for taking care of ourselves from a nutritional perspective.  There are millions of choices out there that aren't always the best and they prey on the fact that we are in a rush or seemingly too stressed to make good choices.  At the end of the day, we must be advocates for ourselves and our own health.

Bernardo Faria and Tom DeBlass are two of the most sought after jiu jitsu instructor's in the world.  They have both stepped on the mats at the highest levels facing some the BJJ histories greatest competitors.  Besides being considered two of the best competitors in history, they are also academy owners and successful businessmen.  Their influence continues to grow beyond the wealth of half guard knowledge that they are known for.  

In the video below, Bernardo sits down to ask Tom DeBlass some questions about life, jiu jitsu and diet and to share that info.  For a more in depth look at the career of Tom DeBlass and his approach to training and competition, take a look at this earlier article from BJJ Fanatics here!

 Expect a challenge

One of the key lessons that Tom DeBlass shares in this video is the fact that we must recognize that things are never going to be easy.  There is a strange sort of comfort in recognizing that by expecting a tough challenge, a tough day, we are less surprised and better able to adapt to what life puts in front of us.  To help combat the upcoming day, Tom advocates laying out a plan the night before.  That way, no matter what happens--you are ready to face what the day brings and get the job done.

Set reasonable expectations

In regards to training, according to Tom, we should have more fun.  He says that too many people mistake training for competing.  Training is for learning and making mistakes and getting better.  Competition, for DeBlass is for putting your gameplan into motion and executing the plan you have laid out before you.  And in both activities, training and competition, our expectation should always be to have as much fun as we can.

Be thankful for everything

Another method Tom uses to keep himself balanced and moving forward is to always find a reason to be thankful.  No matter how a training session goes, whether he thinks it was good or bad, he always reminds himself to find a reason to be thankful.  If you go to class and get tapped 1000 times, always recognize that you were lucky enough to get to go spend an hour or two doing an activity that can bring so many positive impacts to your life.

Finding Purpose and get the job done

Many times, we need to remind ourselves that life is not about what we want, but what we have to do.  If we're preparing for a competition, there will be many times when we don't want to train.  Because we have set our purpose to train for an upcoming competition, we must get the job done and train even when we don't want to.  Discipline must be strong, when motivation fails us, according to DeBlass.

For him as an husband, father, academy owner and sought after instructor, he has accepted the fact that it is his primary job to serve others.  By maintaining the approach in our lives that we are here to serve others, he suggests we will develop a healthier perspective towards our teammates and our other relationships.  For him, serving others is also made up of helping people to find their goals, their purpose and help them strive for those things.  

Over the past few years, as a competitor who is now 35 years old, he knows that his career could be winding down.  Instead of sitting back and reflecting on the good old days, instead he has made it his mission to be the best version of himself and inspire as many people as he can to do the same and beat their number one competition, their own doubts and negative influences.

 

Finding a Realistic Diet

One of the keys for Tom DeBlass that ensures this process, is for people to get themselves into better shape, by first taking a look at their diet.  And unlike much of what gets shoved in our faces about diet, Tom's advice is extremely simple and easy to follow for the long term.

First and foremost, for him, we need to be drinking more water.  Typically, he starts someone out by increasing their water intake to a gallon or more per day.  Without making any other changes, Tom has seen countless students and others lose weight in only 7 days making just this one change.  

Another practice Tom promotes is the use of intermittent fasting to help inspire fat loss.  By putting a hard stop on when eating is done for the day and putting at least 12-14 hours between that final meal and the first meal of the next day, Tom says you will feel more energized and will ultimately be eating less over the same 24 hour period as when you ate in a more traditional style.

These two approaches, increasing ones water intake and employing intermittent fasting are two simple actions one can take to begin taking back control of their nutritional lifestyle and build an approach that is not based on some fad diet, but instead on healthy, life sustaining practices that can be kept up for the long term.

In conclusion, it's important to recognize that we will not be passionately in love with even jiu jitsu everyday.  There will be days when we do not want to train.  There will be days when we don't want to eat healthy.  It is only through consistency and stringing a series of training sessions or a series of sensible nutritional days together that any progress will ever be made.  The journey of a thousand miles, truly begins with one step.  Then another and so on.

 

While you wait for Tom DeBlass' latest diet and fitness based instructional to be released in the coming weeks from BJJ Fanatics, it would be a great time to take advantage of his best selling 4 DVD "Half Domination" series to learn all of the secrets of his favorite position, the half guard.  You can get it here for only $77 in DVD and digital format.