("It’s not pink, it’s blood-stained.")
Undefeated in the past four years, at 13-1 Ryan Jimmo is one of Canada’s most promising MMA prospects.
The Big Deal is in the thick of training camp for a championship bout with fellow Canadian Dwayne Lewis at MFC 28 on February 25 in Edmonton Alberta and has offered to write about his preparations for the biggest fight of his career via a weekly training blog published every week leading up to the fight here at CagePotato.com.
Check out Ryan’s latest entry after the jump.
What is it, week 6 already?
All I know is the Super Bowl is this weekend – Packers vs. Steelers. Hey, did you hear the game almost didn’t happen? Yeah I guess the NFL big wigs got together and wanted to pull the Steelers from the game and bring in a new European expansion team and give them an instant shot at the Super Bowl because they won like nine or ten games in a row. I guess people got really upset with the Packers, who refused to play the European team because they didn’t earn the shot at the championship game. But no worries football fans, its still the Packers vs. Steelers. I guess the European team couldn’t get into the country because of some sort of travel issues. Football is so disorganized and really needs to conduct itself in a more professional manner if it wants to be taken more seriously as a sport. I’m glad nothing like that would ever happen like in MMA………Anyway, the Super Bowl is still on….GO PACKERS!!!
This week’s training was very hard — so hard on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday that on Thursday all I could manage to do was to warm up and stretch. By Friday I was beginning to feel better and by Saturday I was firing on all cylinders. Wednesday’s session at Frank Lee’s was VERY tough. I almost threw up and my hands wouldn’t stop shaking when I was trying to put my equipment away, and all we did was pads!!! Tuesday at wrestling practice I got thrown on my head numerous times, over and over again. I also got tapped out many times grappling at Hayabusa. People think that when you’re training for a fight you do most of the beating up. Sorry to break it to you, but I get beaten up almost every day when I’m getting ready for a fight. I seek out people that can beat me up and also instructors who can focus a critical eye on me. I don’t want anyone blowing sunshine up my ass and none of my trainers do. Trust me. Frank Lee yells at me A LOT.
In a way I’m a very insecure person. I always feel that I’m not good enough and I’m not training enough. This is an attitude I make sure that I’ve cultivated within myself to ensure that I always strive to continue to improve. On the flip side of the coin I also make sure I have a huge ego!! Our ego is how we see ourselves, I make sure mine is gigantic!!! I treat my ego like that sweater your mother would get for you when you were a kid, you know the one that was a few sizes too big? she would say "don’t worry, you’ll grow into it". My ego is the same way. Think that you will be great, put the work in and you will become what you see in your minds eye.
I believe a strong mind is probably the most important part of fighting. Wayne Otto a nine-time world karate champion once said, "Anyone can throw a kick; anyone can throw a punch. It’s what’s in your heart and mind that makes a difference."
I grew up in a karate household. My father is a fifth degree black belt and has won countless prestigious awards for his dedication to the art. He spent some time training and competing in Japan picking up fifth place at the world championships for our style of karate, Chitoryu. He also passed down the art to two of his sons . Both my brother Jay and myself hold Ni-dans or second-degree black belts. My mother is also active in karate, mostly on a administrative side, but she’s pretty tough as well and has a green belt.
I was first taught karate informally when I was very young. My dad and my brother started showing me stuff when I was three or four, but I didn’t attend classes taught by dad until I was six. Sometimes on Saturday morning when the classes were taught I wanted to stay home and watch Saturday morning cartoons instead, so between the age of six and ten karate was off and on for me. I stuck with it though after I turned 10.
I had the advantage (and disadvantage, depending on how you look at it) of a lot of extra one-on-one training I got from my brother. He was eight years older than me and he loved watching all of the martial arts movies that were made in the late 70′s and early 80′s. He deemed himself some sort of sadistic karate sensei, and you can guess who he practiced all of the moves he learned by watching those flicks on. That’s right, me. I remember him and his friend holding a two by four that was ten feet long and making me walk on it while they shook it…WHEN I WAS SIX!!! Let’s just say that I fell and hit my head A LOT. Another of his favorite “training games” he would put me through a lot would take place in the woods by our house. He would bring me up there in the middle of the night and set me loose while he and his friends hunted me. The only instructions and advice he would give me was, “Just be a ninja, Ryan." I’m sure it didn’t scar me in any way. As I progressed as a teenager my training became more serious, even after my brother moved out. One thing I did on a regular basis as a teenager was I would go into the woods while it was snowing and take my shirt off and punch trees just like in the movie “Best of the Best.”
When I was seventeen I was awarded my black belt. My home life was not that of a typical teenager. For my sixteenth birthday my parents got me a pair of sais. I eventually went on to get my second-degree black belt and my father and I ran our karate club together with my mother taking care of the administrative side.
I had been competing since I was 10 in regional tournaments. Over the course of my fourteen years of competition I won provincials every year for my class. When I was 14, I could go to nationals. I won nationals 4 times and got several silver and countless bronzes in one category or another. Along the way I also picked up one silver and two bronzes from the Pan-Am games as well and I also competed at the Commonwealth championships as well.
Karate has been a major part of my life for as long as I remember, but it really is as much about the sport as it is about the effect my parents and my family have had on me since the two always went hand-in-hand.
The switch to MMA was not and easy one in my heart to make. Karate had given me so much as far as my sense of focus and discipline, as well as an underlying philosophy for life. But I knew I couldn’t be afraid to abandon what I was to turn into what I knew I could be. I felt a strong pull towards MMA as a vessel to fulfill my potential, which is why I made the jump a few years ago. It’s been quite the ride, but my MMA career isn’t even halfway done.
Trust me. You haven’t seen anything yet.
Ryan “The Big Deal” Jimmo