Updated: Feb 15, 2022
As I’ve just launched the website, I did want my first blog to be about me, Radojunkie. Who is he? and what does he stand for?.
As you may have already seen on the events page I am returning to the ring after three years and being five weeks or so into fight camp it’s difficult to switch off and tell you that story.
Not to worry though, I will tell you about that story later, for now, I thought I would focus on my fight camp as it’s what I’m constantly thinking about now and working hard towards.
So, first things first, I AM SUFFERING PEOPLE! My body literally feels like Zoro on Skypiea at this point >>>
I forgot how tough a fight camp is. Not only is it physically draining, but it’s also mentally challenging. One thing I can say is, I miss the feeling of constantly being challenged, not only by my teammates, but by myself, to do better every day.
It’s also exciting to know that my opponent is training intensively and putting in the work to make sure fight fans watch a good Muay Thai fight. As an active fighter in the UK Muay Thai scene, the pandemic slowed down the momentum I have gained, and I feel like I need to work even harder to build my name in the scene.
The only difference this time is that I’ll probably have an opponent that is much more experienced than me judging they’ve been active since last year which means I really must dig deep.
I train out of Fightzone London under former UK#2 Jose Varela. I train out of Fightzone London, under former UK #2 Jose Varela. I decided it was time to make a return to the gym (a few days into the new year) and since then, Jose has been pushing me further than I’ve ever been pushed before. That was when I knew I was really in the depths of fight camp. A few weeks in, I was ready to say I’m done. The experience of constantly feeling fatigued and hungry was getting to me. During one of our group training sessions, Jose said something that instantly struck a chord with me, “you’re not hungry enough, you lack discipline”. At that moment the dots started to connect, and I started to remember my old self that never complained and just did what had to be done.
Following Jose words, I asked if I could train with him once a week at Team Tieu, under coach Phil Tieu. I wanted to train with active fighters so that I could fill the void of being inactive as quickly as possible. I knew I wasn't as sharp as before, so I felt this was the best plan of action to discover what I am currently lacking. The morning had come and all I could think about was whether to have a big breakfast or to go with my usual lemon, ginger and honey tea. For the record, I am not a big fan of eating first thing in the morning hence the tea on its own. Not sure if I had these thoughts because I was nervous or excited. In the end, I just had the tea and one slice of toast for safe measures. For my first session at Team Tieu, I had the pleasure of training with some big names in the UK Muay Thai scene Liam Patel, Michael Pham and Grace Spicer, and I got my ass whooped.
Let’s not forget about Man Like Kave. An absolute beast in the ring who literally swept me all over the canvas and gave me my very first shiner, (and who happens to be a low-key anime enthusiast, but I’ll leave it there for now).
A big shout out to Liam Patel as he has shown me a lot of things, I’m lacking as a fellow giant by whooping my ass with his unique style, then being kind enough to hold pads for me. I’m not going to tell you any secrets just yet, but I have learnt so much about myself as a fighter through Phil’s guidance and what I should be working on in addition to Jose's training.
After each session, Jose always asks me “what did you learn today?”. As we head back to Fightzone on the train, we discuss the details of what I learnt in more depth. He makes sure that I follow up with what I’ve learnt in our weekly sparring sessions with the team. One thing I’ve noticed about Jose is that he pays very close attention to our conversations. If he doesn’t see me doing what I’ve learnt, he simply stops me in the middle of sparring, and tells me to hit the ground and give him push-ups. At first, I was a little baffled as he didn’t give any indication as to why I had to do them, but I just listen and did the push ups. As I got up, he would always say “think about what you are doing”, then it all made sense. This subtle exchange of words and actions have helped me be more accountable whilst training.
What I love about my team is that although many of us are going through a fight camp, they don’t ask me about what I've learnt outside of Fightzone. When sparring, they see the changes I am making to my style and they make the necessary adjustments to their style to adapt to what I’ve been learning. Meaning that we are all becoming better without exchanging any words.
In my opinion, as a team at Fightzone we still have so much to work on but individually, we are all slowly becoming more accountable for our actions.
Above all, my body has been aching through the whole process of putting this blog post together and probably will continue to, but the grind continues.
There are too many of you to shout out individually, but nothing but love and respect to the FZ family for keeping me well in check.
I guess that’s enough from me today. We are a few weeks out from the show, so I will tell you a little bit about the story of Radojunkie later down the line.
In no particular order, don't forget to RSVP below and grab yourself a t-shirt before the fight!
Thank you for reading and your continued support.
PS.: The toughest part of all this is avoiding eating my mum's cakes as she literally bakes every week and of course, I have a massive sweet tooth.