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azstu324

Major Dilemma (seriously)

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Hey all

So I've come to a crossroads in my life. One that I take very seriously as I'm forced to make a choice between 2 things that I love dearly and the loser may have to take an indefinite back seat. I realize that seeking advice at MGS may yield some biased results but I've come to trust and rely in the folks here like family and friends so it can't hurt. 

Those of you who know a little about me from previous MGS tests, know that in my past life (before marriage), I practiced Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Muay Thai. I was also very regimented in my health and exercise routines. I still have a great love for these particular martial arts and have a very strong desire to get my body healthy again. I was more or less forced to box these passions up when we were having our first child, due to finances and priorities (damn them both). During all of this, Golf was kind of 3rd string to BJJ and Muay Thai. This is when my passion shifted however to golf and it has since been my #1 outlet and personal interest. I've worked very hard over the past few years to improve my score, knowledge, etc and MGS has been a tremendous help all along the way. 

Since I've given up practicing BJJ and Muay Thai, and pretty much most things highly active, I've gained quite a bit of weight (80 lbs total over about 10 years), my body constantly aches, I'm not sleeping well, etc, etc.  On top of all of that, I turned 40 last year, and as much as nobody wants to admit it, when you turn 40 these things can really start to catch up (and they are) when you haven't maintained perfect health. All that said, in 2019 I was able lose about 45 Lbs with just diet alone.  

Here's my situation: I'm really missing BJJ and all of its mental and physical health benefits and want to get back to it. That said, if I decide to commit to doing it again, It's a FULL commitment both financially and with time and one that is not just a short-term endeavor considering the level that I hope to achieve. I'll more than likely be forced to give up golf almost completely. Being married with a family and being a sole provider, time is nearly equally as important as money and expenses. When I began my more serious journey with golf a few years back, I had made a personal goal to soak up as much knowledge as I could as well as maintain a handicap around 10 or less. Although not officially registered, I've reached what I feel is an admirable handicap (around 11), and level of skill and knowledge with my golf game. I'm not 100% satisfied and feel like I have areas for further improvement that could still take a few years to reach.

If I decide to pursue BJJ further, the time and financial commitment is nearly equal to what I'm investing in golf.. and is about the max that I/we could afford. Again, time being equally as valuable as actual money and is the reason that I couldn't just have a foot in each pond. Of course I would maintain my status here on MGS and would play, practice, and learn every chance I'm able but it would be much more restricted. 

 

I'm really torn and just looking for some motivating words and advice. 

 

Thanks!

 

Edited by azstu324
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Life is full of choices and we make those choices for a variety of reasons. Some if those reasons are selfish some are more generous. Based on your post you can’t do both because each require full commitment both financially and time wise. Being that you can’t find a way to do both you have to make a choice. Based on my reading your post it sounds like you want to do the martial arts route but don’t really want to give up golf. If you don’t switch you will probably question you decision. Give martial arts a go and see if you are getting what you hope to get out of it. If not you can always come back to golf; golf is a game for a lifetime.

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You are being called back to martial arts for a reason. We change, change some more, then revert to old things throughout life.

I vote for Martial Arts if my vote counts.

Either way I’m in your corner.

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I'm with the other guys so far: just reading your post, it looks like you already have a decent idea which way you're inclined to go.

From where I sit, hobbies always need to have some broader justification than mere enjoyment; as you say, time is too important for it to be otherwise. For me, golf is about golf, but it's also about spending time with my son and my dad. It's about having conversations with people in my church and other people in the community who wouldn't show up in my church. It's also been adequate for me to maintain (more or less) the weight I want, walking most of my rounds.

From what I'm reading, golf is accomplishing some things you want out of a hobby, but not everything. And the health and fitness aspects you cite here are of high importance.

For what it's worth: golf will be waiting when BJJ isn't an option any more. The opposite of that isn't true.

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... While nobody but you will know what is best for you, we can all certainly share our thoughts. I too played aggressive physical sports and continued to play competitive basketball into my late 20's and then found tennis which I embraced with a passion. Getting good very quickly I found matches more and more difficult to enjoy as tennis depends on 2 players of at least near skill levels to be enjoyed fully and competitively. Then I stumbled into golf and never looked back. Yes, I missed the physical rigor that kept me in good shape but walking 95% of my round really helps, especially as I got older. But the beauty is I can join anyone at any level for a round of golf and it can be equally enjoyable, because my main competition comes from the course and myself. I have also met lifelong friends and continue to meet really good people on golf courses. Being outdoors and constantly interacting with nature is a huge bonus for those of us in large cities and suburbs. And finally of course I can play until I can no longer swing a club, which I hope is well into my 90's.  

... Both my sons are involved in JJ, my 31yr old making it his main reason for living and hopes to teach down the line. He works with Eddie Bravo and I certainly understand your passion for the sport/way of life. My only caveat is he is dependent on fellow rollers to be of a similar skill level and at 31 it is easy at the moment but will get harder and harder as he ages. My 28 yr old ex DE loves golf and JJ equally, but has many more opportunities to play golf than find someone to roll with. Although as others have stated, if it is truly a passion you miss and feel unfulfilled by golf, you can always pursue JJ and come back to golf later in life. 

... So like all life decisions, it is really about what will work best for you both now and in the long run. The good news is it is hard to make a poor choice between golf and JJ. Best of luck to you! 

(Since you gained 80 lbs I would add that a diet is one of the main requirements for continued health as we age. Not as in a diet from foods you love for periods of time, but a life changing diet back to pre industrial convenience "food" that is filled with high fructose corn syrup and other harmful ingredients. Organic foods that man ate for thousands of years, chemical free and the basis of our existence. Of course this means giving up much of what we love, but after some time away from bad "food" and eating a healthy diet, tasting the old favorites is quite honestly disgusting. Sorry for the soap box comments but when you eat healthy, you can eat as much as you want but will not gain weight because once the body gets it's required nutrients it is no longer hungry. Meaning you can stuff yourself with crap getting very few nutrients and still be hungry even though you are full. But eat a grass fed steak with a baked potato/butter/sour cream and some asparagus and you are full and satiated. My point being diet is the foundation for any endeavor you chose.) 

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Your read shows more passion and desire for the martial arts. You’ll get back to doing what you loved, AND your health will improve.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

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Oh man! so far these are the comments and support that I really hoped for. Even considering this change is a big deal for me. It's not that I've lost the passion and love for golf but like all of you have mentioned, I have a window to still accomplish something with BJJ and golf will always be waiting for me.

I plan to respond to each of you individually as you all have taken the time to give me some personal insight. 

Thanks so much!

 

Stu

Edited by azstu324
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I'm going to have to agree with the rest of the group, it seems you have a real passion to return to BJJ and I think that is where your heart is leading you. You always have time to return to golf, as it's something you can still do for a lifetime. Whatever you decide to do, I'm fully in your corner.

Sent from my SM-N975U using MyGolfSpy mobile app

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Go with what pulls the strongest.  The great thing about golf is that you can return to it later if the zeal for martial arts starts to wane, becomes too taxing on the body, etc.  Good luck with whatever you decide.

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The heart wants what the heart wants.

Several things I'd consider as someone who is an empty nester and has a LOT of free time to golf on his hands now.  In your situation, cherish every spare moment you have and spend it with your wife and kids.  The kids only have (roughly) two decades in your house, and honestly, most of the 2nd decade they are under your roof they won't give you the time of day, so if your kids are still pre-teen or younger, I would spend every waking moment I could with them.  Your kids will never be the age they are now again, and once they are adults, well, speaking as someone with a 27 year old living in another state, if we text once a week it's a good week.  She's in a serious relationship, and what can I say, 20-somethings know it all anyway, so who needs advice from Dad.  So just embrace fatherhood as much as you can.  The kids will grow up, and golf will still be around after they want nothing to do with you anymore.

With regards to your other endeavors that you love, you pretty much answered your own questions in your post.  You love those things, and it helps keep you healthy and fit.  Do you really need some stranger on an internet forum telling you what you have decided in your heart already?

With that said, I truly believe that there is a balance to everything in life.  A little bit of this, and a little bit of that in more than a few areas of your free time is healthy IMHO.  And honestly, that applies to golf as well.  If I played 36 holes of golf every day, how long would it take for me to burn out on golf?  Yeah, I know, sacrilege to say that here, but it's true.

For me personally, I split my free time between the choir at church and the golf course.  I also try and spend as much time with the wife when we both are free to spend it with each other.  But I honestly don't think it's healthy to consume yourself with one recreational endeavor.  I think the reason so many people hate work, is because we are forced to invest so much time in work.  However, if you have a healthy work/life balance then work is really never all that bad honestly.

Try and mix it up in life with a lot of different things spread out in healthy increments.  But it's a red flag to me if you are throwing all of your free time money and time into one thing completely.  It's rare to find a person who sells out to one thing that doesn't eventually burn out on it.

Heck, I play piano whenever I want, but my piano is collecting dust right now because frankly I just have no desire to play it.  But I go through spurts where I'll play several hours a day in bits and pieces.

Balance in life is a beautiful thing.  Hope that helps and good luck with whatever decision your life takes you on.

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14 minutes ago, GSwag said:

The heart wants what the heart wants.

Several things I'd consider as someone who is an empty nester and has a LOT of free time to golf on his hands now.  In your situation, cherish every spare moment you have and spend it with your wife and kids.  The kids only have (roughly) two decades in your house, and honestly, most of the 2nd decade they are under your roof they won't give you the time of day, so if your kids are still pre-teen or younger, I would spend every waking moment I could with them.  Your kids will never be the age they are now again, and once they are adults, well, speaking as someone with a 27 year old living in another state, if we text once a week it's a good week.  She's in a serious relationship, and what can I say, 20-somethings know it all anyway, so who needs advice from Dad.  So just embrace fatherhood as much as you can.  The kids will grow up, and golf will still be around after they want nothing to do with you anymore.

With regards to your other endeavors that you love, you pretty much answered your own questions in your post.  You love those things, and it helps keep you healthy and fit.  Do you really need some stranger on an internet forum telling you what you have decided in your heart already?

With that said, I truly believe that there is a balance to everything in life.  A little bit of this, and a little bit of that in more than a few areas of your free time is healthy IMHO.  And honestly, that applies to golf as well.  If I played 36 holes of golf every day, how long would it take for me to burn out on golf?  Yeah, I know, sacrilege to say that here, but it's true.

For me personally, I split my free time between the choir at church and the golf course.  I also try and spend as much time with the wife when we both are free to spend it with each other.  But I honestly don't think it's healthy to consume yourself with one recreational endeavor.  I think the reason so many people hate work, is because we are forced to invest so much time in work.  However, if you have a healthy work/life balance then work is really never all that bad honestly.

Try and mix it up in life with a lot of different things spread out in healthy increments.  But it's a red flag to me if you are throwing all of your free time money and time into one thing completely.  It's rare to find a person who sells out to one thing that doesn't eventually burn out on it.

Heck, I play piano whenever I want, but my piano is collecting dust right now because frankly I just have no desire to play it.  But I go through spurts where I'll play several hours a day in bits and pieces.

Balance in life is a beautiful thing.  Hope that helps and good luck with whatever decision your life takes you on.

I suppose that without knowing much about me or my past, you really don't have much to go on and these comments could be justified. 

Just to be clear, my family is my #1 priority and always will be, no questions. @chisag can probably attest that just as the golf community can be very family oriented, the same can be said for BJJ. It's a sport that families can participate in and something that I would love to see my 2 kids be a part of should they decide it's something they want to be involved with. 

Prior to getting married and starting a family, I probably could have been considered as an excessive hobbyist. Besides BJJ and Muay Thai, I also golfed, played competitive volleyball, snowboarded, rode moto cross and quad cross, surfed, skateboarded, wakeboarded, played guitar, bass, and drums in 3 different bands at once (not all at the same time of course). These were all my passions and I was rather good at them all. This isn't in any way a brag as it's not my character. When I made the decision to start a family, I was also deciding that I was ready to give the majority of these things up as they just weren't sustainable if I wanted to have a successful family life. It was another crossroads that when I reached, I never looked back or had any regrets.. and I have a truck load of memories from them. 

I don't have any issues holding on to 1 passion for myself and becoming as much of an expert at it as I can. Everything else in my life is dedicated to my family. We have formed many traditions, and have our own hobbies that we do together that I wouldn't trade for anything. 

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Like you in my younger days I found myself spread thin on hobbies, then came along kids and life responsibilities. I cut back on hobbies, quitting some completely, to my regret golf was one that was cut from my life. I returned to golf a few years and over time the many hobbies have narrowed down to 2.

Sounds to me like you have 2 that are your hearts passion, I would offer that perhaps there's a balance in there somewhere that will allow you to pursue both hobbies along with the demands of life.  But then that's where the difficulty comes in, how to balance all that, and the only one that can answer that is you. But I wouldn't give up one for the other.

Good luck.....

Chris

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13 hours ago, azstu324 said:

as the golf community can be very family oriented, the same can be said for BJJ. It's a sport that families can participate in and something that I would love to see my 2 kids be a part of should they decide it's something they want to be involved with. 

 

some of the most friendly, welcoming and genuinely empathic people I know are in the mixed martial arts community. They talk gently and ooze confidence but not arrogance. They can also handle themselves extremely well if a situation spirals the wrong way.

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Golf can wait. Did love my karate before time got away with family and work. If you go away, I’m sure we’ll be here to welcome you back 

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Where is your passion? I wouldn’t presume to “vote” but if you were a congregant seeking advice between two good choices that’s what I would ask.

Where is your passion and what are your goals for it. If they are as you suggest, to excel, it’s pretty hard to have two passions.

Best wishes and you know that you have our support regardless.

Great job on the weight loss. I’m so sorry that I waited until 60 to change that part of my lifestyle. But I’m glad that I finally did it.


Sent from my iPhone using MyGolfSpy

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My thoughts...

You heart seems to be with martial arts, so go with that.  

Golf is something you can dip in and out of with as little commitment as you like.  You can still play casually if/when time permits, and enjoy it too, as long as you keep your expectations in check, and don't beat yourself up over not scoring as well as you do now.

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