Welcome back to The Challenge. I have now been taking kickboxing classes for two and a half weeks and the biggest difference is definitely the cardio. Striking really is more intense than grappling in terms of cardio. There are many positions in grappling where you can rest, but this is not true in Muay Thai.
Super free agent Jay Hieron has announced that he has signed to fight for Bellator Fighting Championships. Fighting out of Xtreme Couture camp, he sports a 19-4-0 record, though his biggest fight is likely his loss to Georges St. Pierre way back at UFC 48 in 2004.
At UFC 123 in Detroit, UFC legends BJ Penn and Matt Hughes will face-off for the third and final time to settle a grudge over 6 years in the making. Each has one win in the series, Penn with a 1st round submission in 2004 and Hughes by 3rd round TKO in 2006, both for the UFC Welterweight Title. But even with the bad blood between these two gladiators, is this fight still relevant?
Nagging injuries are nothing new to anyone else that is familiar to martial arts and I think this is something that the casual fight fan takes for granted when they watch MMA on TV. I realize that the cliché is true. In this sport, you are almost never at 100%. Something is always pulled, strained or sore. It really takes a toll on your body.
As the sport of MMA has evolved over the last 10 to 15 years, judges have placed a great deal of weight on takedowns in their decisions. Takedowns seem to be the single most common factor in deciding who wins or loses. We have seen so much of this recently, and with the influx of fighters with impeccable wrestling pedigrees, this trend is not likely to change.
So it has been 2 weeks since my last update and I have attended 4 or 5 more grappling classes at The Den (formerly The Lion’s Den AZ). The training has been going really well and my cardio fitness has improved dramatically.
So last week I explained what the challenge would be and I have now begun my training in mixed martial arts at the Lion’s Den in Scottsdale, AZ. My first class was grappling (jiu-jitsu with no gi) with my instructor, pro fighter Kiko France. The warm up and instruction for the class were challenging, but not too tough.