Today, we’re focusing on an important topic: Jiu Jitsu For Weight Loss.

Since I started BJJ, I transformed my body and mind. I lost weight and gained muscle, and it wasn’t only due to the physical intensity of the sport. 

The mindset I developed through training jiu-jitsu made achieving these goals much easier. I found myself eating clean and going to the gym more often, and it all started with stepping into my first BJJ class. 

So, let’s talk about how I transformed my body with the help of BJJ and how you can do the same. 

Women shows that the jeans she is wearing is too big for her

Tips On How To Use Jiu Jitsu For Weight Loss

1. Find the Right BJJ Gym

If you decide to explore Jiu Jitsu for weight loss, you’ll need to find a gym that fits you. The dynamic within the gym plays a big role in how often you show up for classes. If you hate the Gym, you’ll have even more resistance toward going to practice.

I’d recommend trying out a few gyms in your area to get a feel for the atmosphere and the instructors. Your goal is to find an environment where you feel comfortable and excited to train, so take your time in making this decision.

2. Make Friends

One of the best ways to keep coming back to Jiu Jitsu is to make friends at the gym. Having pals to train with makes you want to show up more and gets you moving.

So when you visit a new gym and know you’ll spend some time there, connect with the students. Show up earlier to chat and stay a bit later to have some conversations. 

I met some amazing people through BJJ, and I’m sure you’ll, too. 

3. Watch Your Meals

Chowing down on a big meal before hitting the mat isn’t the best idea. I used to train at 6 PM, so I made sure my last meal was at 1 PM. Training hard in Jiu-Jitsu helps you forget about snacking or munching before practice. After BJJ, that’s when I’d have a good meal.

So make it a rule not to eat 4-5 hours before practice. Whenever I train in the morning, I practice without eating. I love training on an empty stomach – I’m more focused and sharp. You should try it out!

4. Roll Often

The secret sauce to burning calories in Jiu Jitsu is rolling. The more you roll, the more you torch those calories. But be careful. Don’t go all out to the point of hurting yourself. Injuries in BJJ happen mostly during the intense rolling sessions. 

So don’t shy away from rolling, but listen to your body. If you don’t feel like it or have small injuries, don’t roll. The most important thing for losing weight with BJJ is to train consistently. If you get injured, this plan fails. 

5. Eat Healthy

Eating right is a no-brainer. Stick to proteins and stay away from processed foods. You can’t just rely on Jiu-Jitsu; you need to eat smart and less to help your body create a caloric deficit.

I still have big meals after practice, but I make sure they are protein-based. So I have steaks, lentils, beans, tofu, eggs, and so on – these foods are filling, taste amazing, and are low in calories.

When it comes to diet, you have to experiment and see what works for you. But one thing that worked for me is to stay away from sweets and sodas – these are empty calories. Otherwise, I didn’t restrict myself too much in my eating.  

6. Be Patient

Losing weight isn’t a sprint; it’s a marathon. Stick to these tips and give it time. Keep training and eating right, and the weight will start to drop. It’s just how it works. If you follow the tips on this list, you will lose weight – it’s inevitable. This is how it worked for me, too. 

The Benefits of Using Jiu-Jitsu For Losing Weight

When it comes to jiu jitsu for weight loss, most people think about diets and treadmills. But have you ever considered the impact of a martial art like Brazilian jiu jitsu on your body weight?

It’s not just about the physical exercise; it’s also about the mindset it gives you. Let’s break down how you can lose weight with BJJ:

1. You Develop A Warrior Mindset

BJJ will give you a warrior mindset. It pushes you to compete, to better yourself, and places you in an environment with other winners.

I met some of the most interesting people in BJJ Gyms. That alone has a big impact on your drive to succeed, whether that’s on the mat or the scale. 

“The better you are at surrounding yourself with people of high potential, the greater your chance for success” – John C. Maxwell

You don’t just want to be good; you want to be a winner, and that mentality makes all the difference when you’re trying to lose weight.

Honestly, I think this was the main force behind my body transformation – I cultivated the Jiu-Jitsu mindset into my life.

2. BJJ Is Fun

Unlike the monotonous cycles of gym workouts, BJJ training is dynamic and exciting. It’s not uncommon to find yourself wanting to train multiple times a week because it’s that fun to do. But be careful, it’s easy to get addicted to that beautiful martial art… 🙂

3. Reduces Stress

I’m a stress eater. Whenever I feel overwhelmed, I tend to crave high-caloric food to soothe myself. I found that BJJ is incredible in reducing your stress levels. My mind is the calmest after BJJ practice. This keeps me from stress-eating unnecessary calories.

4. You Start Thinking Like an Athlete

BJJ is competition-based. You constantly compete against others, and you train to better your skill level. You will start thinking like an athlete, and this will spill over into all other areas in your life. Especially when you start going to tournaments.

They have weight classes – so when I started going, I needed to be at a 77kg weight limit to compete. This made me lose weight and gave me the motivation not to blow up between competitions because I know how hard it is to lose all that weight again.

Common Mistakes When Losing Weight With BJJ 

1. Muscle Loss vs. Fat Loss

When you’re losing weight, you need to burn fat, not muscle. You don’t want to end up skinny fat. You’re training in BJJ to get strong and fit, so focus on losing fat while preserving muscle.

You do that by going to the Gym as well, maybe 1-2 a week. It not only helps you to lose weight, but it will also help when training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

2. Understanding Caloric Balance

You probably heard this before in any weight loss plan, but let me put it straight: You need to eat fewer calories than you burn if you want to lose fat.

You can burn a ton of calories during BJJ training, but if you scarf down a pizza right after, well, you’re back to square one.

Trust me, I have been there. Using physical activity as an excuse for overeating is a rookie mistake. Don’t do that – you’ll not see any results.

3. Sustainability is Key

The secret to long-term weight loss and maintaining your weight is living a lifestyle you can sustain. It’s not about quick fixes or extreme diets; it’s about consistent weight loss training through a balanced routine.

If you want to lose weight and get in shape, you need to be consistent and show integrity. And what way to better do it than to start training jiu-jitsu.

4. Don’t Use BJJ as an Excuse to Overeat

Just because you’re burning somewhere between 700-900 calories in a jiu jitsu session doesn’t mean you get a free pass to eat whatever you want. Those calories can be quickly replaced, trust me. So don’t use Jiu Jitsu as an excuse to eat unhealthy or more than usual.

Jiu-Jitsu can help you lose your current weight, but it won’t necessarily do so. If you use BJJ as an excuse to eat, you’ll even gain weight.

5. Be Mindful and Eat Clean

Pay attention to what you’re eating. You’re not doing all this hard work to ruin it with poor food choices. Eating clean will not only help you lose weight but also improve your performance in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu training.

6. Keep Showing Up

At the end of the day, it all comes down to this: Keep showing up. Whether it’s your BJJ class or sticking to a clean eating plan, consistency is key.

Of course, it’s not gonna be easy. But I shouldn’t be. If it would be easy, everybody could do it.

How Many Calories Does Jiu-Jitsu Burn Per Class?

BJJ burns a lot of calories during your training – somewhere between 700-900 calories per session. Don’t take these numbers too literally, everybody is different. It also depends on how much you move during your training.

Most of the calories you’ll burn during rolling sessions. These are intense, and you’ll need to use your whole body.

You’re using every part of your body, which translates to a high-calorie burn. Compared to other physical activities, Jiu-Jitsu training will help you burn more calories in a shorter period. And creating a caloric deficit is key to weight loss.

How Much Weight Can You Lose With BJJ Training?

  • Set Realistic Expectations

There’s no straightforward answer because everyone’s body reacts differently. But I can tell you this: substantial weight loss is difficult, but with consistent BJJ training, it becomes a lot more achievable. At least more achievable than with any weight class you could take to lower weight.

  • Weight Loss and Maintenance

Losing weight is one thing, but keeping it off? That’s where the challenge lies. BJJ makes you consistent and accountable. It’s easy not to go to the gym, with BJJ, you’ll think twice. People in the gym will keep you accountable.

You’ll notice that you’ll fall behind if you don’t show up. It’ll motivate you to go. Because the best way to lose weight is when you are burning calories with something you like doing. And Jiu Jitsu has the potential to become your favorite activity – making losing weight almost inevitable.

My Personal Experience: How I Trained BJJ For Weight Loss And Muscle Gain

How I Used Jiu Jitsu for weight loss
These 2 Pictures were taken 2 months apart
  • From Apathy to Passion

Before Brazilian jiu jitsu entered my life, I was very inactive. I wasn’t really overweight, but I definitely lacked muscle and was lazy when it came to physical exercise. I’d wander into a gym from time to time, but nothing really clicked—I wasn’t consistent with any routine.

  • The Turning Point: Entering the MMA World

Then something amazing happened. I walked into an MMA gym and started trying different martial arts. That’s when I discovered Brazilian jiu-jitsu and no-gi wrestling. It was like a switch got flipped inside me. I loved training these martial arts and decided to stick with them.

  • Finding Consistency with BJJ

I got seriously hooked. Before I knew it, I bought my rash guards, and my mouthguard and started going to classes 4-5 times a week, and guess what? Staying consistent was easy. It didn’t even feel like I was making an effort to attend; I just wanted to be there.

  • The Unintended Transformation

Initially, I didn’t notice my body changing. But as I continued training, people around me started to comment, asking if I had been going to the gym. This made me curious, so I went back and looked at a photo I had taken 2 months ago.

I took another photo and compared the two—wow! The transformation was undeniable. I had built muscle and lost body fat. It was the easiest way to lose weight – I didn’t even notice!

  • How BJJ Influenced My Lifestyle

But here’s the thing: I wasn’t consciously trying to lose weight or gain muscle. Jiu-jitsu influenced me to eat better and become more active, all without me even realizing it. The martial art instilled a sense of integrity and consistency in me, influencing my daily habits in a positive way.

  • Integrating Gym Workouts

And it didn’t stop there. Fired up by my progress in BJJ, I even started going to the gym. Adding weight training to my routine not only helped me build more muscle but also enhanced my performance in jiu jitsu.

  • The Takeaway

I can tell you from firsthand experience that BJJ has a ton of potential when it comes to sustainable weight loss and muscle building. Just keep showing up, that’s the key.

It’s easier than going to the gym and doing these boring exercises all the time – of course, you’ll get burned out! Jiu-Jitsu is an art that has the potential to transform your physical and mental health.

Final Words: Your Path to Weight Loss with BJJ

What I did with jiu-jitsu, you can do too. There’s nothing special about me. I’m just another person who decided to give BJJ a try. And it worked wonders for my weight loss goals. There are tons of BJJ practitioners out there who had the same success.

Jiu-jitsu is a great way to get both your body and your mind in shape. You don’t just learn cool techniques and get a good workout; you also build a warrior mindset. And that mindset is gonna help you stay committed to your weight loss goals.

Forget about those weight loss programs or meal plans you see advertised. BJJ is better. It’s more engaging, it’s more rewarding, and at the end of the day, it’s just more fun.

I can’t stress this enough—consistency and integrity is everything. You have to train BJJ regularly. It’s not enough to show up once. You need to keep pushing yourself. Keep rolling, keep learning, and keep burning those calories.

Whether you’re looking to drop a few pounds or make a massive change, BJJ has got you covered.

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