Good genetics and a solid background in wrestling will definitely get the average human to their blue belt and beyond quickly. But if you want to blow away Bernardo Faria, ascend to purple belt in less than two years, and make a name for yourself as a low belt at ADCC like Nick Rodriguez has, you’ll have to do more than just be born and play sports in high school.
Rodriguez has managed to become as recognizable a face and name in jiu-jitsu as black belts with decades of experience in part because of the level of athleticism he’s been demonstrating since he and his blue belt his the scene last year. As BJJ Fanatics’ Faria points out, conditioning has been a major player in filling the gaps where Rodriguez’s lack of BJJ experience can still leave him vulnerable.
The two spend some time talking about some of Rodriguez’s favorite ways so get and stay in fighting shape, including lifting with high reps, lifting every day of the week, and never taking a round off at BJJ training. He also reports training BJJ five times weekly, wrestling on his days off.
For those of us who are not professional athletes in our 20s, which can make lifting and grappling every single day more challenging–some bosses apparently feel 3-hour lunch breaks comprised of deadlifts and guard pass drills are “bad for productivity” or whatever–there’s still good training advice civilians can integrate into their routines as well: