|Me at a competition in the Philippines (in white gi) at 93 kilos|
Let’s first look at finding your ideal weight when you’re training and not competing. Call it doing BJJ as an amateur or for leisure. In this case, you need to be in shape but not in competition shape. So let’s look at my case as an example. When I started BJJ, I was a bloated 98 kilos weight lifting 21 year old, who had previous experience training muay thai . After a few months of training every day, I slimmed down to 91 kilos. After 6 months of training I entered my first competition in the heavy division (94, 3 kilos with gi on). My very limited game was basically to bully my way to work on top. The guys in that weight class felt stronger than me, and even though I came 2nd, I felt that the extra mass I had on me prevented me from being fast and explosive. After a few months, I cut down to 86 kilos (so competing in the medium heavy division 88,3kilos with gi on), and suddenly discovered a whole new world of techniques and moves at my disposal that I could actually do without too much effort. All these moves that I couldn’t do as an overweight 91 kilos, because I was too slow or heavy, were added to my game. I discovered that I had a decent guard and that I was now fast and when someone would try to sweep me, I would bounce right back up like a cat. This was it; I had found my home at this weight! This was the period when my BJJ game really grew. Physically I never felt better, and looked good, my face and body were more cut.
|Me at the Serbian open (white shirt) at 84 kilos|
and to measure the pros and the cons of each one. At the end, I decided that 86 kilos would be my ideal weight and that I would stick to that. The thing that really bothered me when being overweight was the fact of being limited in my BJJ game because of my heavy physique. It’s like having access to just 50% of weapons. It wasn’t worth it. You couldn’t grow in your learning of techniques as much as if you were in shape.