I haven’t been able to post too much as I went straight into fight camp for my next fight which is happening in two days. Once again, I will be defending my X-1 World Events MMA Bantamweight Title against Ricky Camp of Guam. The fight is happening at the Blaisdell Arena on Saturday April 27, 2019.
I was very fortunate to have my Camp done by Coach Justin Mercado in Colorado Springs in the Victory MMA Gym with Coach Gilbert Smith adding in some knowledge and skill as well. This was definitely a different experience but one that benefited me a lot. I trained, drilled, and sparred and wasn’t confined to the four walls of a gym. My training took place on a track, steep hill, a garage, and I also did the Manitou Incline in which at the top I did some Boxing conditioning.
I strongly believe that this Fight Camp has definitely helped me prepare for battle. One of the positive things that happened was the fact that all I had to focus on most of the time was Fight Camp, training, and watching my weight. I was able to put my job on hold for the three weeks I was there and just focused on what needed to be done.
As always, at this time of Fight week it is the tail end of my weight cut. I feel that it has been an easier cut, but I still feel the effects of it, mainly that I am hungry LOL! There could be a bnunch of factors to why I feel this one has been easier. 1. I came off of a fight as I went into Fight Camp 2. The elevation of Colorado. All I can say is that I am on track to make weight and am looking forward to fighting.
I am really stoked and looking forward to be fighting on the same card as my brother, Ryan COCONUT Mondala. It has been years since we were able to fight together at home in front of our family and friends. Ryan is fighting for the 125 lb X1 State Title against an opponent I defeated before, Zach Close. This card is actually stacked from start to finish and shouldn’t be missed.
So I arrived in Japan on a Thursday and pretty much checked into the hotel and did nothing. Lounged around watched a movie and fell asleep. It is pretty cold here.
Checked my weight and as expected the flight over caused my body to swell and add some weight. Coach and I not too worried about it, we got a plan and putting it in action.
Since I have arrived and doing that initial check of weight I am on track to weigh in tomorrow on point.
First Full Day in Japan
Got up and did a lot of walking. Went to a Golds Gym to get a workout in and to do some drills with Coach Scott. Got some looks from the gym workers but we did our thing anyway.
Went sight seeing a lot today. Got to check out the Tokyo Tower which had some cool stuff inside. Japan is pretty chill. I did notice that there are a lot of little Coffee shops all over. Saw some Anime stuff which I thought was cool too.
Took a quick walk up the road looking at a store for something I needed and I felt the cold. It is definitely colder with the wind blowing as we walk. But made it back to warmth quickly!
Tomorrow is the official Weigh Ins for Shooto! It is at 2pm Japan time so about 7pm Hawaiʻi time. The excitement continues to build around this fight. I know I need to focus on what needs to be done once I enter that cage!
How am I feeling since I arrived?
I guess I can say I feel normal for the time being. Again, I am just focusing on the task at hand. This is a great opportunity for me and I know I need to put forth my best if I want more opportunities to come from this.
Thanks for all the support! It means a lot and I see it all on Social Media and even on these blogs. The support from all of you has been amazing and truly appreciated!
As I continue this Road to Japan series, it has come to the point where I am actually leaving soon. By the time I do my next update I will be in Japan. Got a checklist of what I need to pack, I should have everything I need. Got a time when I will be picked up to be taken to the airport. Damn its all coming so quickly. About 12 hours til my flight!
So i worked a half day at my full time job, UFC Gym Mililani. Well maybe it was considered less than half, but I was there from 10-1. Did a starter session, taught a class, and worked with a client.
Headed over to see one of my sponsors, Royce at LevelUpMassage, for a good stretch before I jump on that 9 hour flight tomorrow. Definitely need to stretch out the body in preparation for that.H
I am excited, I guess. Maybe it is a mix of things really. But overall I guess I could say that I am okay and just focused.
Just remaining focus on what needs to be done. This is not some vacation, this is WORK! I have a job to do and I intend on doing it.
Will the fights be live streamed?
I honestly don’t know. On the shooto-mma website they have links and different ways to watch past fights. My team has people in Japan reading through the website to see of they will stream it live. Maybe we need to wait until we get there to find out.
I am hoping it will be live streamed so all of you can watch it. I have a couple
Some people must be wondering what is One FC? Just like how they wondered who Shooto was. I understand that a lot of my followers and fans probably don’t know much of the different Fight Promotions so I decided to shed some light on them through this blog.
This Japan fight is hosted by Shooto as mentioned in Last Nights Blog. But at the beginning of the year, Asias biggest Fight promotions partnered with Shooto. This partnership is with One Fighting Championship. or One FC.
One FC is the UFC of the Asian Market and they already have a huge following in the United States. They are known as the Olympics of MMA Fighting in which they don’t focus on the “entertainment” or “extra curricular’s” like the UFC. They are about the stories behind the fighters, about humbleness, and about taking care of their fighters.
One FC has been one of my team’s goals for me. It is also one of my goals as I continue on this Fight Journey. To be given this opportunity right now at this time is truly a blessing. All I can do right now is focus on this fight and hope I can do the job so that more opportunities become available.
I still trained today with Coach Oz and Coach Scott. We focused on drills and talked through certain scenarios. Coach Scott recapped a few of my training sessions I had and walked me through things I need to clean up.
Coach Scott mentioned today that I am the one who needs to do the job. All I need to do is follow his lead and listen to what he says. I know in my head that it is me that is ultimately in the cage laying it all out. But, it is great to have a mentor like Coach Scott. Actually, I am thankful for all my coaches that includes, B, Oz, and Haru as well.
I know people are probably worried about my weight cut. The time to worry is if on the day of weigh ins I am still not at the required weight. This process has been done by me one too many times to panic. I know what I need to do and I will do what needs to be done. Though I must say, cutting weight is probably one of the worse things on this fight journey.
I have a half day at work tomorrow and stretching with one of my sponsors. Then I will work on what I can to cut weight for the rest of the day. Wednesday I leave Honolulu and arrive Thursday which gives me about a day and half in Japan to cut more weight if I need to.
Yes this fight was taken on a short notice but I am not making excuses. I will get the job done and I will make weight!
A lot of people haven’t heard of Shooto-MMA simply because they are located in Japan. This organization is actually 30-years old and I am fighting in their 30th year Tour.
According to the Shooto-MMA Wikipedia page, Shooto was formed in 1985 as a fighting system based off of shoot wrestling. Their first amateur event happened in 1986 and their first professional event happened in 1989, which is the year they are celebrating.
This fighting system evolved a lot over the years into what we now know as Mixed Martial Arts. The organization has grown tremendously and continues to grow. They will continue to see this growth as they most recently partnered up with One Fighting Championship.
Weight Cut Update
Well, I am still on track to make weight before I step on that plane. The next couple of days are going to be crucial. I do this so many times one would think I would have this down to a system. Well I kind of do have one but it all comes down to how I execute it.
We are in the fine tuning stages of finalizing the game plan for this fight. I am still putting in the work and focusing my energy where it needs to be focused. I have one more session with all three of my coaches together and I am ready to make full use of that time. After that it is all in my hands and up to me to put forth everything they have instilled in me this fight camp that was real short notice.
How am I feeling?
I guess I can still say excited. This is going to be an experience for me and a few firsts as well. The body is receiving some therapy because we all know we must take care of our body if we want it to continue to support us in all we do. Especially for me as a fighter, recovery is important.
I have a full day and a half of work to go at my full time job with UFC Gym Mililani and then I take care of some last minute stuff before I pack.
For now let me just say, I am excited and really looking forward to this opportunity!
This soul was born for battle, my heart was built for war!