So, we headed out of New York to make the trip down New Jersey to Forked River. We were heading here primarily for one reason and that was to train at Ocean County Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu with Tom DeBlass. The drive down was rather scenic as we transitioned from the build-up cities to the countryside of New Jersey. We arrived at our Airbnb and got settled which was between Toms River and Forked River in New Jersey, it was backed onto Cedar Creek with a small deck out over the water.
The following day before training we headed out to Seaside Heights boardwalk, it was just before lunch time on a Tuesday so it was fairly quiet. We wandered around looking at all the games and shops before grabbing a quick lunch. That afternoon we headed to Ocean County BJJ to train, it was only located a 10-minute drive from where we were staying. We were immediately greeted by Kyle and Dave who were taking the kids classes that day. Both Lilly and Kobe loved their time training here, as always they made a load of friends and loved the coaching.
Both Dee and I trained here every chance we got, in fact we only missed one class the whole week we where there, this saw us completing up to 4 classes on some days. Everyone in the academy was super friendly and we had so many great sessions there. The coaching was great and It was awesome to meet Tom DeBlass who has become a bit of a social media role model and motivator for so many people. Tom is a well decorated grappler and mma fighter and we loved his no Bull-Sh#t approach to his teaching and life in general.
The one day we had off training was a Friday (OCBJJ train every other day) we headed down to Atlantic city. Its pretty much a beachside version of Las Vegas that is smaller and a little rougher around the edges. We spent the day here strolling along the boardwalk and checking out some of the little shops that scattered the length of it. The beach looked great but we didn’t bring anything to swim in so we just admired it from dunes.
Apart from training, walking the boardwalks and a bit of kayaking off out deck we didn’t really do too much in New Jersey, there didn’t seem like there was a heap to do in the area that appealed to us other than that. It was still 100% worth the trip down there though as the training kept us so busy.
We left Forked River and headed towards Washington DC, the drive was a little over 4 hrs and we made sure we went through Philadelphia. We pulled up and had a walk around the city and Delaware river. We also had our first Philly Cheesesteak as if you are going to give it a go you might as well be at the place that’s in the name! man were they good. With full bellies, we loaded back into the car and continued to Washington.
We arrived at our Airbnb and sort of realized we should’ve payed more attention to the neighbourhoods as arriving the initial look was a little daunting, the place however was great. When people asked where we were staying and we reply Southeast Washington they all immediately reply “be careful”. It’s a little noisy at nights and sirens are quite often going at all hours, but hey we came here for an experience…
Training in Washington DC has been great, we stopped in a trained at 50/50, Ryan Halls gym. This place can be a little tricky to find as its in a basement under a CrossFit gym. As always, we were warmly welcomed by everyone at the academy. Lilly and Kobe both participated in their Brazilian Jiu-jitsu kid’s classes, Lilly also did the kickboxing class while there. Both Dee and I also competed both the fundamentals and Advanced classes, a lot of professional fighters have moved to 50/50 be part of their program here so the intensity was quite high during sparring. We enjoyed Ryan’s and Jen’s conceptual way of teaching jiu-jitsu. Unfortunately, on the second day there Kobe had an allergic reaction to their dog so we called off the last few days training to check out some of the sights.
Washington DC has many spectacular monuments to America’s history, we spent an afternoon leisurely walking through them all. Another big plus is that all the Museums and Zoo are FREE…. Well sort of the parking fees cost almost as an entry fee would. We took some time to check out the Great Falls Park, we spent quite a few hours walking the river and enjoyed getting out and away from the city.
The body’s are feeling a little beat up so from Washington we are heading to the Smokey Mountains for a few days to relax before heading over to North Carolina for more training.