Should girls lift?

Hell yes! Girls I hate to tell you, you all say it ‘all I want to do is get toned and I don’t want to get big’. Toned is muscle, and you cannot get big because you do not have the hormonal support to generate large muscle mass. So hit the weights. Doing cardio and only cardio is not going to tone the body, it is not going to work the muscle to the extent that weights would and by weight training as well you’re still going to burn calories for longer after the gym session than if you just do cardio. The way your body composition changes as we said before is dictated by your nutrition. So in the gym ladies do not be afraid of hitting that weight section. Any man  that looks derogatorily at a woman walking into a weighted area of a gym is not a man worth worrying about anyway.  So get in there, do your thing, be proud and progress.

- Lex Griffin 

Recent UFC Heavyweight Additions

Joe Silva finally realized that having a division full of 40-something year old dudes fighting for the title for the next 10 years probably isn’t the way to build hype for the heavyweight division. He’s gone out and signed a lot of heavyweights. So many in fact that about 1/3 of the heavyweight division now has 2 fights or less in the UFC.

And  this is new territory for them. Outside of Velasquez, JDS, and Miocic, how many new heavyweight contenders have the UFC been able to produce in the past 6-7 years? There hasn’t been much turnover. Guys like Werdum, Reem, Mir, Arlovski, Rothwell, Barnett, and Hunt still form the top ten in the division after 10 years of fighting. “Newer” “established” talents like Bigfoot, Mitrione, Schaub, and Nelson are all old, physically declining, and more or less have a foot out the door in terms years ahead of them. Two of the top talents in Cain Velasquez and JDS are looking like shells of them former  selves, dealing with injuries and looking just straight up shop worn. It’s alarming when you think about it that the UFC could/would let it get to this point but they’re attempts to build new home grown contenders has fallen short so far: Duffee, Rosholt, Mitrione, Browne, etc.

That’s why they’ve reinvested in signing guys young and building them up slow (which is the way it should be done with guys from 185-HW). Here is a quick intro to the heavyweights the UFC has signed over the past few months with links to some more in-depth analysis.

1. Bilyal Makhov (0-0)

Yes the UFC signed another heavyweight with no actual MMA experience but Bilyal Makhov is arguably the best prospect they’ve picked up. A former bronze medalist in  the 2012 Olympics, he became the first wrestler in 43 years to double medal (both bronze) at the wrestling world championships in 2015. He’ll be making the full time jump to MMA after teh 2016 Olympics in Rio where he’ll be looking to double medal again. He plans on working with K-Dojo.

At only 28 years old, the sky is the limit for him once commits full time. Heavyweight is the same division where Jared Rosholt made it to the top 15 literally by only wrestling with his opponents. There aren’t a ton of guys at HW that can wrestle well, let alone on Makhov’s level. Expect big things if the transition goes smoothly.

2. Marcin Tybura (13-1)

The most proven of the recent heavyweight signings and the one likely to have the most immediate impact is former M-1 heavyweight champion Marcin Tybura of Poland. M-1 has the 2nd best heavyweight division in MMA and Tybura ran it with an iron fist, submitting top Russian circuit heavyweights one after another. He beat the likes of Damian Grabowski, Denis Smoldarev, Ante Delija, Chaban Ka, and Konstantin Gluhov while competing in Russia. Primarily a grappler, his game is to get on top and reign punishment until you give up a sub or just wilt. His only slip up was to M-1 LHW champion Stephan Puetz in a fight he was dominating until he started to fade late and Puetz broke his nose.

Of the recent HWs added to the roster, Tybura is most ready for a top 15 opponent. First though, he’ll have his UFC debut against Timothy Johnson in April.

3. Francis Ngannou (6-1)

At 6′4 250lbs, Frenchman Francis Ngannou looks like he got lost on his way to his football practice and ended up in the Octagon. The man is built like a truck and he hits like one too. He’s already made his UFC debut, KOing Luis Henrique back in December in the 2nd round after being soundly out grappled in the1st. Let’s get 1 thing straight: Ngannou is raw. He’s a great athlete, especially for heavyweight but he doesn’t have the years of combat sports experience to back it up. His gym (Crossfight), however, has cranked out some good fighters and top flight prospects in recent years like Tom Duquesnoy, Taylor Lapilus, Mikael LeBout, Magomed Bibulatov, Christian M'Pumbu and Karl Amoussou.

He’s only 28, super young for a heavyweight. He’s got nothing but time. As long as the UFC doesn’t send him down the Stefan Struve past and stick to baby stepping him along, the guy could turn into something special. Ngannou’s next fight will be against a debuting Bojan Mihajlović in April.

4. Adam Milstead (7-1)

Training out of Pittsburgh, the best way I can describe Milstead is that he appears to be a less patient/technical version of Stipe Miocic. Which makes sense as he’s a training partner for the UFC heavyweight contender. 1 of  only 2 recent American pickups for the HW division, Milstead has quietly crushed some lackluster competition and somehow ended up on the UFC’s radar. He’s a solid physical talent that likes to throw down from in close. He’s got some solid power and should be able to put together a nice run in the UFC. It appears he hovers below 230lbs, however, and hasn’t really fought anyone of similar athletic potential.

5. Dmitry Smolyakov (8-0)

31 year old Russian Dmitry Smolyakov is actually a training partner/coach for Polish fighters like Mamed Khalidov and Joanna Jedrzejczyk. Considered a Master of Sport in both Freestyle and Greco-Roman wrestling, he’s been pretty dominant so far in his UFC career. 8 fights, 8 first round stoppage victories. I haven’t seen him fight yet, so I don’t really have an opinion on his upside.

6. Jarjis “Man Mountain” Danho (6-0)

31 year old Syriian Jarjis Danho enters the UFC pretty inexperienced, especially because his “background” is basically power lifting. He’s got a couple of solid wins for regional HW despite that. He’s a good puncher, which is basically his entire offense. Likes to brawl in the pocket and likes to dirty box on the inside. He really likes the body punching too. Obviously, he’s strong as an ox and built like a damn mountain. While he does slow down in fights, he keeps his power and it doesn’t appear he takes his foot off the gas. He keeps trucking it, even when gassed. Not a particularly good grappler but his freak strength has allowed him to get out of some dangerous positions on the ground.

Danho will debut against Polish HW Daniel Omielanczuk on the London card on Feb. 27th.

7. Cyril Asker

Another French heavyweight. Go figure. Asker comes to by way of the EFC Africa promotion that gave us the great Ruan Potts. You see where this is going? To be fair to Asker though, he did also beat Potts in the first round like the three UFC fighters before him had. He’s also not a guy that will be looking to play the sub game with 250lb guys throwing bombs from his guard. He’s an okay boxer that will probably suffer from being a really small HW.

8. Bojan Mihajlovic (10-3)

Serbian Bojan Mihajlovic is…filler? He’s been signed to get prospects the UFC has hopes for okay fights. At 5′11, he’s absolutely tiny for a HW. His win streak is basically built off of can crushing, which isn’t really any different from a lot of the HWs that make it to the UFC but he hasn’t really stood out. Add in that he’s already 35 years old and has been fighting for 13 years, there really probably isn’t a whole lot of room for growth. He’s also a nut that has to be reigned in from time to time by the ref. Should be a short but memorable UFC stint for him.

He’ll make his UFC debut against Francis Ngannou on the UFC Croatia card in April.

*9. Cody East (12-1)

While not officially signed with the UFC yet (asterisk), Cody East seems to be a lock for the UFC any day now. It’s thought he’ll be on the UFC’s Looking for A Fight series but his criminal background could stop him from being promoted on the platform. (For reference, he was arrested for assaulting 13 y.o. and 15 y.o. girls at a house party when he was 19). Dana did specifically ask Legacy FC to add him to a card 3 weeks prior so they could scout him. I’m not as high on East (or his brother) as others are but he’s probably on the higher end of what the current American heavyweight prospect scene has to offer. He’s a pretty explosive athlete with a background in boxing.Plus he’s only 27 years old. He’s got a good frame for HW too. Think he ends up being a Shawn Jordan type. His biggest problem moving forward is going to be whether or not he can stop being a fuck up outside the cage.


Drilling for skill on the focus pads. Building up a nine hit combination, working on punching speed and countering with shots on the focus pads.

Build the punches up as you add them to the combination. Use each punch to pull you into the next one and always try to work from a strong guard, even when you get tired!

As you get fitter you can increase the speed for a more intense cardio workout.


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France’s Olympic judo champion Teddy Riner could have to undergo surgery on a painful shoulder injury next week, his coach told AFP on Tuesday. Franck Chambily said Riner had a small piece of cartilage that was pushing on a tendon at the top of his left shoulder and causing the athlete pain.

“It’s better to remove it,” said Chambily, adding that a non-surgical technique would be tried first before resorting to surgery next week, which could sideline Riner for up to six weeks.

Riner pulled out of the Paris Grand Slam last weekend because of the problem.

The eight-time world champion, unbeaten in more than 100 bouts dating back to September 2010, will be bidding to defend his over 100kg Olympic title in Rio de Janeiro in August.

Since the London Olympics in 2012, Riner, 26, has had a number of shoulder problems which saw him stop his season in 2013 and 2014 before undergoing an operation on an elbow in 2015.



I loved watching Roy Jones in his prime! Repost from @fightingfocus #boxing #legend #boxingko #ko #knockout #legend #thestrikerslab #fight #fighter #fighting #sweetscience #mma #martialarts #mixedmartialarts #mmastriking

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The hardest part about getting great training results? Simple, it’s getting started! 

The biggest barriers to an activity that will change your life happen before you ever begin! Any time you start a new habit, the mental preparation and expectations perceived can put you in a mental grid lock. You want to check out Kickboxing, but nervousness and angst set in. 

In life sometimes when opportunity knocks, you’ve got to kick the door in! At RCW we’re aces when it comes to teaching beginners. We’ve had thousands of people come through our doors over the years and the majority of all people who start training with us at our Tigard location stick for more than one year. It’s because it doesn’t matter if you pick up Muay Thai (kickboxing), Gracie Jiu Jitsu (grappling) or JKD (Bruce Lee’s method) we have a detailed curriculum and a step by step process that leads to success. In fact, we’ve never had someone who was “unteachable” or incapable of learning the skills we’re covering every day. 

The hesitation from beginning any new endeavor comes from the perceived notion and fear that makes starting worse than it is. Everyone who checks out our Muay Thai class loves it! The only people who don’t are still on the couch! 

Luckily, it’s easy to get through this if you have a PLAN. Whenever you start a new endeavor if you just feel STUCK before you get started write out a plan logically. It’ll remove some of the fear, and the key is, it’ll help you move forward even when you’re afraid. We tell kids this all the time right, courage doesn’t mean an absence of fear but the ability to work through it and still achieve our goals. A small written plan will really help you get going and it’ll take the fear out of each individual step. If you want to go a bit further write down or visualize how you’ll feel after you’ve started. What benefits have you gained, imagine yourself already attaining what you want. 

Once you get started, you’re going to blow yourself away. Once you start doing something good for yourself it’s hard to go back to the old you. If you try something empowering like Kickboxing, you’ll never want to imagine giving it up. Take some small steps in toward any endeavor, and you’ll see that it’s only the small fears that hold you back from the big goals in your life.