File this under: Must be nice. You know that dude Georges St. Pierre? Yeah, the guy so naturally athletically gifted that he’s managed to teach himself to be one of the best wrestlers in MMA, despite having no formal background in it whatsoever? The most dominant welterweight fighter on the planet today? Turns out that guy doesn’t really think that lifting weights and/or doing cardio will help you in a fight.
“I don’t believe in strength and conditioning,” St. Pierre tells stand-up comedian/color commentator/MMA political action director Joe Rogan this week on the UFC’s “Ultimate Insider” show. “I never do strength and conditioning. I do not believe that running on a treadmill or doing I don’t know what … I don’t believe that’s going to help you have better cardio for a fight.”
Huh. We’re going to assume that what St. Pierre means to say is that he prefers sport-specific training like sparring and grappling drills in order to build his MMA skills and endurance. Still, not to over-simplify the message here, but this sounds suspiciously like Georges St. Pierre is saying the way to succeed in MMA is just to be Georges St. Pierre. Also, let us say for the record that lifting weights and doing conventional cardio probably will help you if you are, you know, a normal person. If you’re a mild-mannered French Canadian cyborg whose three great joys in life are kicking ass, finely tailored suits and pool parties, well, maybe the laws of science and nature just don’t apply to you.
In order to prove his point, St. Pierre offers up the example of … another unlikely statistical anomaly … in Jean Charles Skarbowsky. That’s right, the drunk-as-a-skunk Muay Thai instructor who showed up on this season of “The Ultimate Fighter” just long enough to beat the crap out of everyone after GSP gave his team a stern warning: Do not test this guy, St. Pierre essentially said, because he will murder you and not think twice about it.
“I remember I had a Muay Thai instructor from France, that I even brought on the reality show ‘The Ultimate Fighter,’” GSP says to Rogan. “The guy smoked, I don’t know how many packs of cigarettes a day. He’s always drinking alcohol. He’s a real character, and he’s completely out of shape, but when he spars with us in Muay Thai, he kicks everyone’s ass. The reason is because he is more efficient than we are …
“I think everything in fighting is about efficiency. In the UFC, I do believe everyone is in shape. We’re all athletes, you know … but the reason I believe a guy is more tired than another guy, is because one guy is more efficient than the other. One guy is able to bring the fight to where he is strongest, and the other guy to where he is out of his comfort zone.”
Point taken. Although, Skarbowsky? Probably not the best example since, like GSP, he appears to be a guy so naturally tough that he can just beat everybody up no matter what he’s doing with his off time. Oh, and in case you’re wondering, St. Pierre says he does lift weights, but not to help him in competition. No, he only pumps iron to make himself “more marketable.” And when he says “more marketable” we assume it’s just French for “I do it for the ladies.”
“The only reason it is good to lift weights, to do bench press, and stuff like that, I believe, is because it is going to make me more marketable,” St. Pierre says. “To keep myself looking more symmetric, with a better image … Which is very important, because if you look good, you feel good, and if you feel good, you do good … Yeah, I lift weights for looks. Yeah, I am gonna admit it.”
Next thing you know, GSP will be telling us he doesn’t believe in the germ mechanism theory; that he thinks the common cold is caused by tiny, mischievous gnomes who live in the shadows just beyond our peripheral vision. Also, the earth? Totally hollow, dude.