TUF 26 blog ep 6 – Barb vs Gillian, Contender Series viewing

Aug 1st

I was always the first one awake at 4 AM. The next person up was Karine, who always came in without her microphone (lol always got scolded), and then Barb, around 5 or 6ish. I’m SO sorry, Team Alvarez guys in the first bedroom, I didn’t know you could hear all my kitchen noises. I think Barb or Lauren said, “Yeah it’s easy to hear things” and it didn’t quite register that I should stop washing the dishes because they were clunking, and then one of them repeated a week later, “Yeah we can hear EVERYTHING.” Then I was like, oh dang, sorry. I hope I was better after that.

There are no doors in the house.

I had a nice long chat with Barb this morning. I didn’t really know her that well, and every time I looked at her, I just wanted a rematch of our fight six years ago when she choked me out in Black Eye Fight Promotions. Haha!

The RNC is my favorite move, too! Shucks. I really just wanna see how much I’ve grown and if I can take her. But I really was interested in getting to know her as a person. She’s not active on social media so I knew next to nothing about her. I enjoyed hanging out with her a bit in the house. She was usually starting breakfast just as I was cleaning up, and she swam around the same time I did my warm ups and yoga outside. I respect her so much, and appreciate her seriousness and dedication.

Aug 2nd, Wed

Tuesday, unexepcted things happened. The schedule said we’d get massage therapy, then a meeting with a UFC staff member, then training at the Performance Institute. (noo! Not after my massage! I didn’t want to go….) Well, suddenly the meeting got canceled but a nutritionist came and talked to us about weight cutting. Then Dana White invited us to the Contender series fights!

I decided to do conditioning in the morning at home before my massage. I got in a good, hard leg day. I did my trainer Lorenzo’s jump squat series outside on the sidewalk. Then squatted down and lifted up a 30-ish pound rock I found in the back yard up over my head, and replaced it gently. I usually throw a heavy weighed ball over my shoulder, but couldn’t exactly roll a hard, jagged rock over my shoulder. I also took my rubber band, wrapped it around a tree branch, and did punches with resistance. Maia rode an exercise bike in my vicinity so we could “work out together.” Later, I did mountain climbers by sliding my stocking-ed feet across the tile floor in the den.

It was hard to know how much to do because we never knew what kind of training we’d do that day. I didn’t wanna kill my legs and then have to do hard sparring a few hours later, or do some in-class conditioning. :/ Well, I’m really glad that I have a great trainer like Lorenzo who taught me good techniques I could take into the house and do on my own, and know they would help keep me prepared for a fight.

I was so tired and hungry for the rest of the day! It was also hard to know how much to eat. I took a solid nap for an hour. Then we got to be out in public! We couldn’t wear any UFC clothes.

Our names hadn’t been announced so nobody knew we were the cast. We weren’t allowed to tell anybody, obviously, with a very expensive lawsuit hanging over our heads if we did. So the TUF staff led us out in groups of three to sit in the bleachers with other family and friends also invited. On the way to my seat…I think I sat with Maia and….someone? Shana or Sarj or Christina? One guy game up to me and said, “OH! Ultimate fighter!” I thought, “Does he suspect this season or recognize me from the last season?!” He came over. Other people started looking. Crap. “Hi,” I said. “You are a fighter, aren’t you?” “Uh,” I said. “What’s it like to live in the House?” (he still hadn’t used the past tense to let me know if it was season 18 or not). “Well,” I said, seriously, “I live in an apartment.” My housemates in earshot started snickering. “Uh, oh?” he said, confused. “So who are you rooting for tonight?” I said, and steered the conversation away. LOL

I also successfully deflected another guy who recognized me. Then, over the next hour, the man sitting next to me said a few comments about the fights, like nice move, or whatever. He finally said, “I’m with the UFC. I watch all these fights.” I forget what else he said. “So you’re part of the next season’s cast, right?” he said, not exactly softly.

It caught me off guard because I didn’t know who in the UFC knew or not.

Then suddenly, I saw my jiujitsu instructor Captain come out and corner one of the fighters! My heart leapt into my mouth. I knew John was cornering Julian in the main event! Captain’s guy lost, unfortunately. But I timed my bathroom run with when the guys were doing the doctor check. Then as we were both heading back, me to my seat, and them to the locker room, I “accidentally” bumped into them and “accidentally” embraced Captain as hard as I could. I missed him sooooooooooooooo much. ;__; It had been almost a month but felt like years since I’d gone away!

Then I got scolded by a producer. ^^;;

Sorry not sorry. It felt so great. Then they made us leave before the last match because we had a time schedule, so I didn’t get to accidentally hug Coach John. But later we found out Julian KO-ed his opponent and got the UFC contract. YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! GO #TeamSyndicate!!! whoop whoop! I was elated! Oh, I accidentally hugged my training partners Shawn and ran into Eric. That was nice. Man, seeing them was like water in a dry desert!

I was really impressed with the fight between Gillian and Barb. Gillian is really physically strong and good at taking the back. I was always trying to fend off her attacks from the back when we rolled. lol And you never know in TUF how a fight is gonna go. Everybody is out of their element without their normal coaches. Gillian really took it to Barb. She was really threatening with the armbar, but Barb stayed calm and defended it correctly. Barb then got the better of Gillian in round two and finished with TKO stoppage. It was an exciting fight. …