At 40, Bibiano Fernandes is living his best phase as a high-performance athlete in the One Championship, where he holds the bantamweight belt. With a record of 24 victories, 9 by submission, and only four defeats in MMA, the Manaus native knows the essential ingredients to succeed as a professional and he has a primer that he’s been carrying from a very young age, when he was still taking his first steps in Jiu-Jitsu in Amazonas.
A two-time world champion in Jiu-Jitsu by the International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation (IBJJF), today Bibiano shows 10 of his concepts for you to evolve — on and off the mat. These are lessons that will impact your journey as a student or professional.
Read it, share with friends and practice!
1. HAVE WILLPOWER
“It is something that you need to acquire within yourself. Only you are able to find your own willpower and say to yourself ‘I can do it’ and ‘I will get there’. Without determination it will be very difficult to get anywhere. You need to create determination within yourself, and that’s something only you can do. You need to know and trust your values, your potentials, your discipline, your will to win. This is essential for your trajectory.”
2. DO NOT BE LAZY
“That word doesn’t exist in my dictionary or in my life. If you are too lazy to wake up early, work, study, fight… You will always be in the same place, spend years in the same place. So it is necessary to leave laziness aside, wake up, get up wanting to win with your mind focused on the future.”
3. LISTEN TO, AND TRUST, YOUR TEACHERS
“This is a very important thing, as they are always willing to help you. I connect well with my teachers, for example; my teachers are still the same today; I haven’t replaced them. There’s Master Osvaldo, Faustino Neto, and my Muay Thai teacher. They are the guys I practice with today; I listen to them and they listen to me too. When I have difficulty with something and ask for advice, they share their visions with me. On the mat, I need to see and decide the best path to follow. I put everything into practice while fighting. I am a competitor, so I need to trust my masters and understand their minds. When we understand each other, everything becomes easier in my endeavor to be a champion.”
4. HAVE FAITH
“There are days when you will wake up tired, in the worst mood, wanting to stop, but you need to continue. You can’t stop! Keep moving, working on your mind and body, thinking about the future, thinking about where you want to go. Having faith is important to pursuing a career.”
5. HAVE A VISION
“You need to visualize where you want to arrive! When you see, you can reach your goal, just as if you can’t visualize it, you probably won’t reach your goal. Imagine! Do you want to be an athlete? Can you imagine yourself as one? If so, the people around you will also be able to see it, but it’s not enough to just imagine it; you have to put it into practice as well.”
6. SLEEP WELL
“Some people say: ‘I’ll sleep when I’m dead.’ These people are neglecting the value that of resting; sleeping is important, both for the physical and the mental sides. When you sleep, you are replacing a type of brain cell responsible for protecting the neural circuit. A good night’s sleep also helps with rejuvenation. So, if you wake up early it is good to sleep early.”
7. GOOD NUTRITION IS IMPORTANT
“I try my best to eat well and have a balanced diet. I, for example, avoid eating too much meat. Eating well is very important for you to produce good energy within your body. Many people wake up in the morning and consume a lot of sugar, for example, drink a Coke, and this does not bring any benefit to their body. Your immune system also suffers. Waking up and spending the day feeding your body good food amounts to being smart and taking care of your health. This makes a difference in my career.”