Fight, Fight event, Glory, training

On a quest for GLORY

Just a quick note, as I have two articles about the GLORIOUS GLORY 5 event in London to finish up – so have some hours of writing ahead of me.

Last weekend was spent in London, where I was lucky enough to witness GLORY 5 at first hand, and get to meet some of the biggest stars in Kickboxing: Tyrone Spong and Remy Bonjasky. Thanks to John O’Regan from Glory’s London office, I even got backstage access and can now provide the two magazines I write for with unique photos!
(As those of you who read my blog knows, I’ve had my share of trouble with the PR woman in London, and unfortunately it didn’t stop there. When I came, I was accredited as an online journalist = no photo opportunities, despite several mails where I specifically asked for photo opportunity.) However  – nothing is as bad, as it can be reversed, and thanks to John, I can now give my temporarily employers what they pay me for: Unique fight report from Glory.

Remy Bonjasky and Tyrone Spong was – if anyone ever thought otherwise – two of the nicest fighters ever. No attitude or diva syndrome despite they both had been talking to media all morning, had no breakfast (cause they had the weight in just an hour before) – and had been to a schedule press conference the day before.
– And to be honest, I guess if anybody had any reasons to act diva-like it would be them, but no. They were both so nice and came across as very open and honest, hardworking guys.
I also met and interviewed Steve Moxon from Australia – he too was a really nice guy, and I got to meet my big photographer hero: Ben Pontier.

The fight event itself was spectacular! I got to experience Lenne Hardt live, see some of the worlds best kickboxers in action – and  no less than 5 highlight worthy KO’s were served to us – the humble audience this evening in ExCeL.

Aside from this, I got to visit an old friend of mine from NYC, who now lives in London – which was awesome. She lives in this perfect apartment and got a new, really nice boyfriend. Couldn’t be happier for her. I also ate sushi all weekend!!! If Liam had been with me, the weekend would have been perfect! (It always better to have someone to share good experiences with!)

Bonjasky and me - sporting Invicta

Bonjasky and me – sporting Invicta

Spong and me

Tyrone Spong and me – still supporting WMMA













My training from last week – still keeping the finger ‘cool’:

Monday: 5K with Liam
Tuesday: 20:20:20 + 2 FighterGirls Classes
Wednesday: Burn & Tone, FighterGirls & Abs Blast
Thursday: Circuit
Friday-Saturday-Sunday: London

This week:
Monday: Thaiboxing at Brucies
Tuesday: 20:20:20 + 2 FighterGirls Classes



Fight, K-1, UFC

Post UFC Abu Dhabi

The fight card dreams are made of

Last night I was watching the fights from the UFC 112 Abu Dhabi, and was as many others blown away by  – especially Silva vs Maia fight. But the surprise started much before the main event.
To begin with, the fight card looked stacked!! Looked awesome – and I loved the match ups. Could ‘The Answer’ find a way to defeat ‘The Prodigy’?, was Maia’s bjj enough to match the Silva’s out of this world stand up? – and then the legend match: Hughes vs Gracie. In short – the line up had all the components to excite fight fans around the world.

Evening started out entertaining with the ‘minor’ fights on the main card. UFC always has their fight night divided into two parts: The undercard where the fights are not being televised (or most likely not) – and the main card with the top fighters and upcoming stars.
The two first fights on the main card promised all good: Rafael dos Anjos vs. Terry Etim – Terry Etim and Kendall Grove vs. Mark Munoz. De Anjos vs Etim was truly an exciting match up – and Grove vs Munoz was fantastic. What a pull-off by Munoz. After being rocked and dominated, he slips (yet another submission) the armbar and make use of Groves side position, gets mount and goes berserk in a good ol’ fashion ground n’ pound. A very well deserved W!

Kendal Grove vs Mark Munoz

Then the funny stuff began, starting out with the legend match. Good ol’ american wrestling against fine tuned brazilian jiu jujitsu. I expected a stand up war – that would also go on the ground (and back up – and back down). Don’t think anyone ever saw Hughes kicking that much – which turned out to be a good recipe – but a very boring and predictable match.  (I actually began to wonder, if anyone had shown Hughes some of the K-1 fights with the dutch lumber jack). Especially when it got cleared that Renzo wouldn’t attempt a take down on the cowboy. Great game plan from Hughes, a plan – not to lose by Gracie, end result a pretty boring result for the spectators.

First title fight: BJ Penn vs Frank Edgar. The Prodigy vs The Answer. Another well thought tactic, this time perfectly executed by Frank ‘The Answer’ Edgar. And yet another match up which on paper seem to be rockin’ the socks of any fight fans out there. Great bjj against great wrestling. Both fighters with bombs in their hands. But here we go again with tactics that are more designed not to loose, than to win.

Yes – I do believe that Edgar worked harder, but Penn did more damage. And I was surprise to find, that the judges would give the victory on that foundation. I thought a title fight had to be won convincingly – and not just by the teeth of a hair. I found the fight to be much more equal than to give the belt to the challenger.

Which bring me to the last fight with Anderson Silva and Demian Maia. Someone DID tell Silva not to go on the floor with the bjj specialist. (Top of the pop according to UFC commentators Rogan and Goldberg – which once again made the event so entertaining. Thanks!!!) So ‘The Spider’ stayed up and demolished, crumbled and made a mockery out of Maia, who didn’t seem to bring anything to the table, besides his bjj. First in the fifth round Maia actually started to throw some swings. But then it was too late. Too little – too late.

The Spider tactic in rd 5

I can sympathize with all the people hating on ‘The Spider’ for not knocking Maia out – or just doing the ’round abouts’ for the last two rounds. Hey! I’ve hated on Kyotaro for doing the exact same thing on the K-1. But it doesn’t take away the fact, that Maia was the challenger. He was the one, who should’ve gotten in there, proving himself – prove to the world, that he was better than Silva. All Silva had to do – and did – was to defend his title.
As much, as we might not like how he did it, he did defend it – and showed that Maia is classes below.

Anyway – tomorrow will be a normal blog from my own little training world.

Ps. A good fight I would recommend: Aussie vs Ali Gynuar from the Amsterdam Fight Club event. Check also Chris NGimbi – excellent dutch fighter who uses angles in such a fluent, smooth fashion, one can’t help getting excited.

boxing, Fight, Fight club, muay thai, strength training, thaiboxing, training

Strength workout 6 & return of the Fight Club

Today was an overall good day! Training wise and work wise 🙂

Started the day out by a boxing session with Johnny De Lima. It’s always a good way to start the day, and it’s never too hard, so there was energy left for more training after lunch. Boxing basically consisted of bagwork, shadow and 2 on 2 drills – finished off by 200 abs, 100 back and 50 push ups.

Johnny De Lima & me (Kessler being interviewed in the background)

Afternoon training – from the Ross Bible: Strength workout 6
* 2 DB Split snatch (3 reps, 5 sets) super set with
* 2 DB Push press (3 reps, 5 sets)
* 1 arm DB bench press (5 reps, 4 sets) Super set with
* 8 depth plyometric push ups (4 sets) +
* Wall Squats (hold 1 minute) (4 sets)+
* 10 Jump Squats (4 sets)

Plyometric push up with clap

Due to my injured wrist, I chose not to do the to first DB drills. Instead I did 1 x 5 Clean & Press with 7.5 kg DB and 6 x5 10 kg DB. (One arm at the time)
Also for the depth plyometric push ups, I had to revise the drill, and instead doing 16 fast push-ups. My 1 arm DB bench press was done with 10 kg DB. As long as my wrist are fragile, I rather stay training with little or no weight, than go crazy in kilo-… but have to admit, it’s a bit boring thou.

Wall squats and squat jumps are easy peasy (sort of). I do it with my class in All girls and all good and strong!! No problems in that. For my later afternoon training, I had to teach the girls class in Siam. I’ve started the class out on a low-level, but will slowly drive them up. Today we did about 100 push ups throughout the class. I bet, none of them would think, they could ever do this.

SLAMM 6 poster

Evening ended at Eurosport, commentating this years second Fight Club! Fantastic evening, with pure awesomeness: Andy Souwer vs Masato from Dynamite event, and four fights from the awesome SLAMM 6, Holland vs Thailand.
Excellent fights – and what a pleasure to be showing pure muay thai fights on Eurosport.

And so explosive cocktail: The dutch style vs thai style. A viewing pleasure for all fight fans. Yodsenklai – Bourdif was main fight – and so cool. Yodsenklai came in with these small uppercut elbows, that just cut up between Bourdifs guards. Ring Generalship!!

Uppercut elbow

boxing, Fight, friends, martial arts, sparring, training

Fight preparations

Right now I’m watching a friend of mine fighting – a great boxer Lolenga Mock. Sitting and watching him in war against the italian opponent, figting for the European titel, I can’t help thinking about all the hours of preparation – and tonight all this work culminates. Its tonight everyone can see the fruit of his struggles, the off-days where he still went to the gym. Got beat up by his team mates and trainers, and still managed to come back the next day. Even his real work lies in the days, weeks and months passed behind in the gym – its tonight the world will remember.

Mind you! Fighting is not like any other sport, with seasons and off-seasons. Being a fighter means (nearly) perfect shape, year-round, month after month slaving in the gym, hitting the bags, skipping, doing footwork, guards, shadowbox, sparring, padwork – everything – everyday (except sunday) – year-round. There’s no summer holidays or christmas for the pros – only off-days are when injuries prevent you from training.

And Lolenga Mock is one of these warriors – always ready to fight. Stepped up to the plate with only days notice several times. Come to think of it, I know a few of these warriors. Warriors who take a fight any day, any time. And they got lots to show for it. Without doubt some of Denmarks finest nak muays (thai boxing warriors), whose fighting style got refined and re-defined by their plenty ring experience. But it doesn’t come for free – it cost – sweat, blood and more sweat in the gym.

Lolenga Mock sparring with Mikkel Kessler. CIK 2009

Back on the screen, my friend is in the 6th round. Italian still pushing hard, but Mock seems to have the upper hand. Doing the bop and weave (Johnny (De Lima) shout at us again and again in the gym), frustrating the italian. When you can’t hit, you spend lots of energy on nothing. 7th round – Mock finished 6th round best, but now they both had a short rest. Only having fought 2 min. rounds myself, I’m full of awe how the boxers can go round after round – 3 full minutes in every round. (And my MMA friends who are doing 5 min. Thats just plain ridicules).

Have you never stepped into the ring, you might sit thinking: ‘hey 3 minutes – its nothing! Get to it’. And to be fair, yes professional fighters does train for work. It is their job all year-round to be fit. But stepping into the ring – it’s just you (your training, your ego, your instincts) and your opponent, whos been training hard to beat you. It’s not for everyone – it’s a tough job, and the slightest faults will get punished immediately and relentlessly.

While writing this – they’re come to round 10th. Nearly half an hour have the two men traded punches and blows. Trying to hurt the other, trying to knock him out. Putting it out there – for all to watch. Your fight preparations shows, your hunger shows. As I’m watching them going at it in the 12th and last round, I’m wondering if my training will be enough, to step into the ring a week from now.  It’s definetly for the brave – and maybe slightly crazy. I mean – who will in their right mind, slave in the gym, getting yelled at, beat up, and smashed to pieces, only to pick one self up and go do it again the next day. Except Sundays 😉

My friend won after a 12 round war. Congratulations to Mock on taking the victory, titel, glory and honour! Enjoy your sunday my friend. You deserve it 😉 If you were in Thailand, I would say – go to Swensens 😀

Fight, martial arts, muay thai, thaiboxing, Thailand

The Smackdown

Saturday night featured the so-called BBQ Smackdown at Tiger Muay Thai. This saturday 3 muay thai fights, 1 boxing (exhibition match) and 1 (or 2 according to Rich *s*) MMA fights was scheduled to entertain the growling crowd.

And no one ha to go home disappointed if it was pure smackdown tendencies they were looking for. In all 3 muay thai fights – fighters went in the ring to kill – some even with everything hanging out, and no holding back. However blood thirsty souls had to leave unsatisfied, as the Smackdown features fight with 18 oz gloves, shin pads and no elbows or knees to the head. However my newly found NYfriend Scotty won his fight on a KO, 3rd – midkick that really hit home.

The boxing exhibition fight had two of Tigers trainers showing of in the ring. Even it was a silly fight, you could really tell, these guys know what they’re doing – and I feel so blessed of having had 1-1 clinch with Tuk. Amazing man.
Also, I got to see my

old trainer from Legacy Gym (Ole Laursens gym in Ubon Ratchathani) – Phut – which was really good, as I havent seen him, since I moved to Rawai. It turned out to be quite a ride from here to Tiger, but on the other hand, its close to the beach – has lots of great places for food (got really sick of Tonys), and local life that are not dependent of tourists – and its just makes a world of difference. In my book anyway. I really dont care for Patong, Karon or Kata. I didn’t back in 2004 (even during Tsunami days it was horrible), and I don’t care for it now. But Rawai/ Promthep has turned out to give me that homey feeling – so I guess, I have to give in, and write I actually like Phuket *s* hahaha!

More on the following days from Rawai/ Promthep – and then its soon time to sleep with the tigers!