Rafael Lovato Jr. has retired from IBJJF competition at the last, 2022 World Championships. Some days have passed since, before Lovato decided to voice his thoughts and emotions about the retirement… And yesterday was the day for him to do so:
I was exhausted & overwhelmed with emotions & really didn’t know where to start with trying to put into words how I felt.
He felt all the emotions there are to feel:
A grueling “last dance” camp, the excitement of victory, the sadness of defeat… Watching my legend brother Xande Ribeiro retire, watching my future legend brother Victor Hugo win in dramatic fashion…
Reminiscing of nearly 25 years of IBJJF competition, closing the biggest chapter of my life while being just 2 months away from becoming a father of twins; it has been a lot to process.
There’s so much left to say about retirement for Lovato. But he’ll save it for when he has the right words:
I feel like I have so much to say. But as I take the time to organize my thoughts, I just wanted to tell you how much I appreciate YOU.
My students worldwide old & new, my peers, my training partners, my Jiu-Jitsu family, & all my supporters who cheered for me that day & have been rooting for me since I was a kid, with all my heart, THANK YOU.
I am very grateful for all the kind messages, posts, stories, comments etc… Knowing that I’ve made a positive impact on so many people’s journey is the greatest reward I could ever hope for.
View this post on Instagram