Having to leave town the week before competing could have been the worst thing that could happened to me yet it turned out to be a blessing. I was competing in a week so I had to train! I had to step outside my comfort zone and walk into gyms that I had never been to and roll with people I did not know. On the flip side I knew I had to listen to my intuition no matter how much I needed to train. One moment, one position can = one BIG setback and no setback was worth a night of training. I decided to make the lengthy drives and train at Atos in Long Beach and Oceanside. I did everything from basics to advanced and even private lessons. Great schools, great people and a great vibe all the way around at both academies! I had no fear and no holding back; I was in a good place mentally.
After 3 hours of training in Oceanside I couldn’t wait to call my coach—I was so proud of where I was! Not my game but my mental strength and healing progress. From where I was just weeks ago I don’t even feel like the same person, I was so strong mentally. I’ve always needed that safe person, a protector, a rescuer. Yet here I was and I was okay! This week I got out there and played my game, put in hard work, had fun, smiled and laughed. I escaped and reversed mount and never thought twice about it. Now back at home I am more ready than ever to put in a couple more hard training days with my teammates. I will go out there at Pan Ams knowing that I have worked hard for this day and earned my right to fight on those mats. I train to win we all do but no matter what happens Friday, if I’m on that podium or not I’ve already won. This victory is mine and no one can take it away from me–sometimes the battles won before the fights are bigger than the fight itself!