Boxing is not only about getting into great shape and mastering the tools of the sweet science. An equally
important aspect of the fight game is having the mental fortitude to succeed inside the ring!
Boxing is perhaps the most physically challenging sport of all. The boxer requires both upper and lower body strength in
addition to unprecedented levels of cardiovascularendurance. They must stand up to the punishment inflicted by an
equally-conditioned opponent. To further complicate things, the boxer must train his mind to be as tough as his body …
Boxing is not only about getting into great shape and mastering the tools of the sweet science. An
equally important aspect of the fight game is having the mental fortitude to succeed inside the ring.
Boxing isunique from other sports. A fighter is alone inside the ring. Even legendary trainers such as
Eddie Futch and Angelo Dundee were forced to exit the ring during rounds. To be successful, you must
not only be strong physically, but mentally as well.
Regardless of your skill and physical condition, the time will come when you are tired inside the ring. You
will be hurt or injured, yet forced tocontinue fighting. Boxing is not like other sports where you can look
to the referee to call timeout. Instead, you must fight until the bell rings. You have the option to quit, but
real fighters never will. Rather, real fighters fight regar dless of the circumstances they face inside the
Mental Discipline: It Rests On Your Shoulders
The mind is a powerful tool that some never learn tocontrol. Consider the following … all boxers understand the
importance of running, watching their diet, and training hard in the gym. W hy then, are some fighters in amazing shape
while others only mediocre? W hy do some fighters have difficulties making weight, while others weigh in perfec tly every
time? The answers lie within the mental discipline of the fighter. It is easy to cheat on your dietand easy to skip your run;
boxing is not an easy sport.
A day in the life of a fighter consists of an early wakeup followed by a morning session of running. I typically wake up by
5:30 a.m. and start running by 6. While most people sleep soundly, we are out running the streets. Our roadwork consists
of hills, sprints and torturous intervals. The morning session is far from enjoyable, yetbecause of its importance, we
commit ourselves to it.
There will be days when you are tired, perhaps you stayed up late, perhaps it is raining outside, or the wind is blowing
feverishly in the winter. Boxing is different from other team sports; many of the decisions must be made on your own.
Your coach is not there at 5:30 in the morning, remindi ng you to wake up and hit the roads. It is easy tohit the snooze
button on your alarm and drift back to the dream that was abruptly halted by the annoying buzz. So what makes you
decide to run while others may choose to sleep? The decision often comes from deep inside. The man who wakes to run,
runs not to look nice on the beach, rather he runs to inch himself closer toward victory in the ring.
He may be preparing for a regional amateurtournament, perhaps the nationals, or even a professional world title . At some
point, you must decide on your own, how bad you want to win.
There will always be those who sleep and those who wake. There will always be those who hang out at the gym and
those who train until the lights go out. We are all going to have those days when we'd rather not train. On our way to the
gym, we consider drivingpast, yet we stop and turn toward the gym parking lot. Mentally, we must be strong if we are to
succeed in this sport.
No one can make the decision for us to train. The decision m ust be made at the individual level. The best trainers in the
world are only as good as the students they train. They can provide motivation and advice, but ultimately, the decision still
rests in the hands of the...