We are all on our own unique Jiu Jitsu journey. This segment of the newsletter is an opportunity for our readers share their own BJJ lifestyle. Send your contributions to mybjjlife@bjjweekly.com.

Matt Connolly

I train 3 - 4 times a week.

I travel for an hour each way to training.

I fit training around very unsociable shift work as a police officer which often leaves me exhausted.

I travel to training after working a 12hr night shift.

My rest days are spent at the academy.

Short notice overtime and being called into work means I miss weekend seminars and comps regularly.

My understanding wife encourages me to go training as she knows how much I love it even though it means more time apart.

I train CrossFit and eat Paleo.

I often get home at 11pm and have to be up at 4am for work.

If I don't train I miss it like crazy.

I am a White Belt and will one day be a Black Belt. 

This is my Jiu Jitsu Lifestyle.


Julia Johansen

My name is Julia Johansen, I'm a 34-year old, out of shape, non-athletic woman who is desperately addicted to BJJ. I am a teacher trainer by day and a BJJ fiend by night.

As far as I know, I'm the only non-Korean woman training BJJ in Korea, and the only person in Korea blogging about BJJ in English. I love my gym, I love my instructor, and I love BJJ. Because of this love, I try to go whenever I am not sick (Flu Jitsu should be a solo sport). There are many days when I feel like my whole life is: work, BJJ, laundry, cat, Internet.

Seoul has many BJJ gyms. Mine is a mere 20 minute walk from my work, offers a large changing room, decent sized mat, and enthusiastic and respectful training partners. I am one of only two women at my gym, and I feel very comfortable and welcome.

BJJ is the first exercise I've truly enjoyed in the last 15 years that did not involve video games. Before starting BJJ I had a black belt in television watching. I watched 40 or more hours of tv per week. Now it's rare for me to watch more than 5 hours in a week. I am such a non-athlete that I often feel the only thing I can bring to the mat is my enthusiasm, so I bring bucketfuls.

When I'm not on the mat I can usually be found on my BJJ blog at or on http://www.jiujitsuforums.comunder the name scifigal. My hope is to become a Georgetown senior fellow and train teachers in Brazil so that I can roll every day for 10 months. If not, I will likely stay here in Korea, continuing to learn enthusiastically under my instructor.

Gary Langford

I discovered BJJ about 5yrs ago and I have also practiced Judo on and off for a long time. From the age of 12yrs I practiced weightlifting competing at Olympic and Commonwealth Games level.

 I am just about to turn 58yrs of age and last year obtained my blue belt BJJ. I wish I had discovered this sport years ago but at the same time I am glad to have found it now. I "sell" the sport to anybody that listens and even though my joints are a little worse for wear I try and train up to four five times a week including a Judo session.

The club I train at is fantastic we have about forty guys as members with up to twenty-five on the mat at any one time. We share the Judo Dojo and are lucky enough to have a good mat to train on. Our Sensei for judo is about to move up to second dan and our BJJ Sensei is grading for his purple belt this year, we have six blue belts.

I am just constantly fascinated by the BJJ techniques and would really have liked to practice them in my 20s when flexibility wasn't such a big issue. I have as I mentioned been a weightlifter and obviously trained with weights for years. To be honest I now find training with weights a bit boring. A BJJ session goes so quickly and requires skill, strength, flexibility, stamina and a constantly changing thought process when you're rolling.

The guys at the club don't discriminate against age or race and everyone is accepted including three ladies we currently have training with us.

Our club is in Mackay, Queensland, Australia so we all feel the tropical heat this time of year. I can't really express in words what BJJ means to me but I think a lot of guys understand the "magical ethos" of the sport. It’s an addictive sport to get into and would rightly deserve a place as an Olympic sport.

BJJ friendships also endure as the guy that started our club moved to Perth a few years back but is coming this week-end to take a training seminar. He's currently a purple belt but will grade to brown this year. I met him in a Judo session and politely asked him if he had done much before. When we got to ground I soon discovered he'd done a bit. We plan to have a BBQ Saturday night at my place and I feel honored to be putting it on and looking forward to the guys coming around.

I'm not sure how far I can go in this sport, never thought I would make blue belt but now I'm thinking purple. I know it’s going to be a sad day when I can't train or roll anymore but I'm enjoying this journey like you wouldn't believe.