This is the face of a champion.
It’s not pretty.
It’s beat up.
It’s bloody, scarred and bruised.
You’re not given respect.
You have to earn it.
You earn it through the grind.
Testing yourself against the best.
Putting yourself in situations that make you better.
Taking your beatings.
Learning from them.
Adjusting your game plan.
Trusting your experience.
Not giving a shit that you’re bloody, battered and bruised.
Because that’s what a champion looks like.
The scars are experiences.
They are reminders, stories and motivation.
And they are what made you the champ.
THE MAKINGS OF A CHAMPION
I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to get tickets UFC 154 in Montreal. The experience was amazing. It was raw. It was animalistic. It was poetic. Kudos to all of the fighters for being so accessible, athletic and entertaining. But the main event – the Welterweight title fight – was where the champion was made. You see, once you enter the ring, it doesn’t matter that you’ve been a champion before. That belt was taken away from you the second you stepped in the ring. And you have to earn it back.
Seeing George St-Pierre fight Carlos Condit through a full five rounds was one of my personal highlights for 2012. It was technical. It was brutal. It showed tremendous heart. It also taught me a lot about life. You have to fight to be on top. The road is never easy. You have to grind it out with hard work.
We are not infallible. As dominant as we may have been a year or two ago, things change. You have to constantly improve yourself in order and bust your ass to create your legacy.
But most of all, you have to keep moving forward. Don’t be afraid of getting kicked in the face. Scramble, get back to your feet and earn your championship.