Just when you think you're tough enough


Show your support for Ronda Rousey and Joanna Jędrzejczyk in UFC 193

Ronda Rousey

For the first time ever in UFC 193, the top two main card fights will be headlined by women – Ronda Rousey and Joanna Jędrzejczyk and Reebok proudly stands in their corner. Hear from these two female athletes making history on their background, their motivation, and their advice to combat athletes starting out.

1. Fitness has always played a role in their lives.

Ronda Rousey: Sports and fitness have been an outlet for every event and emotion that has come my way.

Joanna Jędrzejczyk: I was always a sporty girl. I trained in many different sports so it has been a big part of my life. Growing up I knew that if I was working out or playing a sport I could do more than people who were not doing it, so to be at my best I knew that I had to be exercising.

Ronda Rousey and Team Joanna

2. They have both focused on combat from the start.

Ronda: Every single one of those [first] experiences are all the same to me, which is why I think I perform so well in all of them. Every single fight since it was my first judo match as a white belt in a local tournament I still treated it like the Olympic final.

Joanna: To be honest, my first combat training was Basketball! That was a pretty intense “combat” sport. The first MMA I ever did was taekwondo, but that was just a one-time thing – too boring for me. Then I was invited to join a friend at muay thai classes and I just fell in love from the first class. I knew it was something I was going to be doing for the rest of my life, like I was put on this earth do be involved in that. What I liked from the start and still do about combat sports is that there are no excuses, you must go hard, you must be focused, and you must pay a lot of attention as it doesn’t take much for you to lose. If you don’t do one of these things you lose easily.

3. Their advice for combat athletes? Work hard.

Ronda: Regardless of where you are or how you are being treated, you have a right to be there. And hard work will make everyone realize that.

Joanna: Always remember this is about you – about making yourself better. MMA is a tough sport to be involved in, but it is a sport that will give back 100% of what you put into it. All the hard work does pay off.

Ronda Rousey

4. These women are ambitious inside the Octagon and out.

Ronda: I was most humbled by not winning the Olympic gold medal. Not sure what I am most proud of because I don’t think my accomplishments are finished yet, they all seem unfinished to me right now.

This [four-year] cycle […] synchs up with the Olympics so I guess it ends in 2016 and that’s when I will really be reassessing where my life is and if I want to continue fighting for another couple years or if it is time to move on.

Joanna: I am very proud of myself and of my work ethic more than any specific thing. I don’t give up and this is what makes me most proud. I have put so much work into this – 12 years of hard work. Less than two years ago, I became a UFC fighter and only 6 months ago, I became a UFC champion. I will keep working hard, because I want to be an undefeated UFC Champion for a while and prove to everybody that if you work hard and you follow your dreams you can reach the top.

5. Like us, they are encouraged that the perception of UFC being a male-dominated sport is past the tipping point.

Ronda: I am very encouraged with all of the progress I have seen being made, not just in MMA but in women’s sports in general. I am very confident that it will continue to go this way in the future.

Joanna: It’s no longer a male-only sport. We are in the 21st century so the idea of work or sports that are only for men is something from the past. Women can do anything men can do. We can go as hard as a man can go, so I am very happy that we have these new opportunities from the UFC, from the media, and from the fans to show that ladies can be in this sport, working hard, and putting up great fights.

Joanna Jędrzejczyk

6. These fighters truly demonstrate that #ToughisBeautiful.

Ronda: I think that there will come a time where women widely aspire to have healthy bodies instead of trying to conform to a cultural standard of beauty.

Joanna: Today you see more ladies getting involved with harder training, combat sports, and CrossFit, and you see more and more girls looking stronger and adding more muscle mass. But we can still look like ladies, it’s more about what you feel comfortable with, do you feel good with more muscles? Do you feel good with a few bruises? It is all about you – you only live once so you should be doing what makes you happy!

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