As an instructor, I am sometimes baffled by they way in which some students approach their training. They see a target - and they train like a demon to make sure that they're tip-top for that target...knowing that an even harder target lies beyond.
Then what do they do? They take their foot off the throttle, glory in their success and ease off training for a while. Then, when it's pointed out to them that their standard has slipped and the next, harder target is fast approaching, they go into panic-ridden
hyperdrive, looking for extra sessions and one-to-ones!
You cannot beat consistent, regular training. Everyone is entitled to holidays, everyone is going to fall ill once in a while, but there is nothing stopping you going through your
stuff yourself - you know what you need to know - and if you don't have the self-discipline to train on your own, maybe you're just not ready for the higher rank. Even if you just drill basics and order at home, you're ahead when you step into class. The instructor
can add detail and correct any issues, but if we're constantly teaching you technique, forms, applications over and over and you're not bothering to drill them and absorb them, what's the point?