New Year, New Goals: Why BJJ is great for fitness and weight loss

in this month’s blog, we interviewed one of sjja’s newest brown belts – mo, on his personal fitness journey and why he thinks bjj is great for weight loss, keeping fit, and creating a long-term healthy lifestyle.

tell us a little bit about you.

My name is Mo/Mohess – I work as a software engineer at a health company. My hobbies include playing video games competitively, building random gadgets, programming, hanging out with friends and family and also training BJJ. I was born in Papua New Guinea but am ethnically Sri Lankan and Malaysian.

how did you first become interested in training bjj?

After being a long time avid fan of the UFC and MMA I wanted to gain skills that were used in these sports and also the conceptual idea of BJJ was very interesting to me. I have been training since day one at Crows Nest when Bruno first opened up the gym.

how has jiu jitsu benefited your health (both physical and mental)?

Physically it has helped me with cardio and strength, but mentally it is a very therapeutic sport to be involved with. It helps with being more present and provides mental clarity when you have too many things going on outside of training.

can you talk us through some of the specifics regarding your transformation?

So during 2020 to 2022, at the height of covid lockdowns and restrictions, I took time off the sport due to wanting to keep my grandmother safe as she lived with us and was at a vulnerable age. During this time, I went from 85 kgs to 119 kgs and essentially became very unhealthy.

Mid 2022 I decided to start training again. Initially I started with just one class a week (the 1 hour sparring class), and gradually built up to training 3 times a week within this 5 month period. I managed to drop 26 kgs within a 5 month period, and during this time, I was able to gain back a decent amount of cardio and strength. I believe a combination of regular classes and sparring is key for anyone who’s trying to lose weight and get back into the swing of things. I also started counting my calories to ensure that I’m not overeating, so that my body could burn off the excess weight.

how else has bjj benefited your life?

BJJ has allowed me to gain a new sense of community where I’ve met some amazing people. It’s also allowed me to have a greater sense of self confidence, and equipped me with self defence skills, and overall it’s given me an amazing outlet to refresh my mind in times of turmoil.

is there anything else you’d like to add?

Shoutout to everyone that I train with for pushing me and giving me awesome rounds on the mat. I can’t wait to compete this year with the team at SJJA Crows Nest.

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