What hurts more than heartbreak? The feeling of getting your heart ripped into a million pieces is one that could take days, weeks, months, and sometimes even years to completely forget. On the onset of heartbreak, it could feel almost impossible to even consider recovery. To the broken hearted, it may seem as if things will never get better.
But the good news is that one day, you will be able to move on. 32-year-old Adolphus Lee is proof of that. Unlike most people, Adolphus took a healthier approach. With the help of martial arts, Adolphus was able to move forward and mend his broken heart.
“My girlfriend and I were together for 3 and a half years,” explains Adolphus. It was a tough breakup for him, especially because he thought that she was the one. “I was devastated — everything that I had done up to that point of time was mostly for her.”
For a month, Adolphus went through a phase of excessive drinking. Which, he says, he regrets. He knew that drinking wasn’t going to get him anywhere and that he had no choice but to just move on. He started training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) again, and added strength and conditioning to his routine. He would also read books, including Viktor Frankl’s Man Search For Meaning. “It helped open my mind,” says Adolphus. “I really needed to get on with the rest of my life and move on.”
Before his breakup, Adolphus was already attending Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu classes regularly. A student at Evolve MMA for almost 3 years, Adolphus would also try out other classes – but it was Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu that he stuck with. “I loved the fact that BJJ engaged both my brain and my body,” says Adolphus, “I’m not surprised that it takes 10 years to get a black belt – the constant learning and perspiration are what keep me going.”
It was also BJJ that helped him get over his relationship. “I started going to more BJJ classes,” explains Adolphus. “Learning techniques and working to improve my game helped me forget about things. Working with Professor Teco Shinzato opened up a whole new world of moves – leg locks, the x-guard, and his favorite, deep half guard.” Because of his love for Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Adolphus started to include strength and conditioning workouts to supplement his training. He also started to notice significant changes in his physique. Training BJJ has also helped him focus more at work, keeping his relationship off his mind. As a small business owner, staying focused and disciplined towards finishing his goals is a must, a life lesson he learned from BJJ.
The support from his friends and family was also a big help for Adolphus. “I have an awesome bunch of friends who didn’t mind just hearing me rant,” Adolphus says, “Without them, it would have been difficult to get over my breakup completely.”
As with all life-changing moments, there are always lessons to learn. “Everything is impermanent,” explains Adolphus, “I have learned to forgive. Forgiving someone is like forgiving oneself, giving oneself another chance to move on with life.” Although heartbroken, Adolphus looks forward to the future and the promise it brings.
His advice to someone going through a breakup: “Come to the mats and spar with your friends. BJJ is the only sport I know where sparring each other is an acceptable form of bonding,” Adolphus laughs. “It may be tough at first, but fret not, you’ll find your way back eventually. Just don’t give up and surround yourself with awesome friends and family.” With martial arts and a strong support group to help him through one the toughest times in his life, he knows anything is possible.