The December 8, 2007, battle has sparked a wildfire spread of attention from media and fans which have turned this event into the fastest selling sold out fight in world boxing history. Oscar De La Hoya publicly voiced that he has never seen Hatton in better shape, and so with this heard, Bodybuilding.com pounced on this announcement to find out from the "Hitman" himself how he got in such shape to attract the best opponents from around the world.
An attempt to schedule an interview with a world class boxer leading into a sell out bout in Vegas can be as easy as Tyson removing one of Holyfield's ears, if you are lucky, very lucky. Zoning in on cardio, weight training, nutrition, supplementation, and the opponent are all things that would be of central focus at this vital time.
The thought of allowing some stranger to call and possibly ask, "Do you think you might lose this time," would be like inviting a door-to-door religious recruiter and timeshare salesman over for a few beers on Super bowl day. So, when we wanted to interview the current light welterweight champion of the world, we expected ... well ... not much.
Kerry Kayes, a friend of mine and owner of CNP products, who also happens to be Hatton's strength and nutrition advisor, gave me all the details needed to contact the hard hitter from Manchester, England. And so, the games began.
Ricky's manager (Paul) was positive on hearing that I knew Kerry and my request to interview Ricky for Bodybuilding.com, or maybe he felt sorry for me upon hearing my Welsh accent, nevertheless there was a possibility, but at the same time uncertainty.
"Without making promises, I'm sure he will do it for you Kris, it's just finding a time is the hard part," Paul explained to me from his Manchester base. Upon hanging up, I had a time scheduled to make my first call attempt. I made that call but the interview didn't happen.
Ricky was busy training so the call was rescheduled. Again, the interview didn't happen. Paul returned my call several hours after our initial appointment to apologize and inform me that there was bad reception on his phone where they were that afternoon.
The third attempt fell on a day that I was sure to be as equally ill-fated. Ricky was in Dublin supporting his boxing brother (Matthew) who was fighting an opponent from Finland who had never been stopped in his career. Paul answered the phone. "I'm so sorry Kris, I'm not sure if he can do the interview right now, he has just started eating and his family has just walked in, oh hold on, he said he will do it, here he is."
Upon hearing the words "Hello, Ricky Hatton speaking," relief and joy introduced themselves to me knowing I could finally I could relay this world exclusive interview to you, the Bodybuilding.com readers. The wait for this interview was a little frustrating but it was so worth it.
So, I won't keep you waiting any longer, here is what Ricky Hatton had to say during our world exclusive interview only weeks away from his WBC World Welterweight battle with Floyd Mayweather Jr. I feel I should mention that Ricky's brother Matthew spoilt that Finnish fighters unbeaten record, in the sixth round.
|FULL INTERVIEW WITH RICKY 'HITMAN' HATTON!|
Interview With Ricky "Hitman" Hatton
Kris recently had a great opportunity to interview the undefeated and current No. 1 boxing contender Ricky Hatton. In this interview Ricky shares his nutrition plan, the weight training he does, and how he uses fear in the ring. Check it out!
[ Kris Gethin (KG) ] How important is your nutrition at this time compared to the rest of the year?
[ Ricky Hatton (RH) ] It is always important. I'm a natural junior welterweight but now I am moving up 7 lbs. I've already won a title at 147 lbs but I struggled in the sense that I made some mistakes with my diet.
In the past I ate the wrong foods because I always had the luxury of making weight easier instead of still eating more sensible and healthy options. I feel I should've concentrated on healthy choices to get the most out of me from an energy point of view. I was sneaking the odd Chinese in during my past preparation so I came in a little too heavy on the night which made me very lethargic.
This time we have been focusing on my nutrition so I can peak for this fight. When I get in the ring at 10 stone 12 lbs. this is the weight I have found that I normally perform best at. When I moved up a division I came in at 11 stone 6 and I was not able to perform at my best. It made for a tougher fight, which I welcome but I've got to learn from those mistakes now and start holding the weight better. Now I am eating the right things and am getting maximum energy levels.
[ KG ] Does your nutrition change much when you're not preparing for a fight?
[ RH ] No. It is pretty much the same throughout the year. My upcoming fight with Floyd Mayweather will be my third fight of the year. I have been training 3 months at a time for these fights, so that is nine months out of the year I am training.
As you can appreciate, I think you are entitled to do let your hair down a touch but I have been able to keep on top of things as far as my diet and weight goes. I am not going as heavy as I normally would and I am only 9 pounds off welterweight limit as we speak.
The key is to increase the protein and make the muscles more tone and to look fuller; that is the key really. I will work on getting my weight to 10 stone 7, but I've got to try and look as lean at that weight as I do at 10 stone, only his time I will have much more muscle.
[ KG ] I understand that renowned bodybuilding expert Kerry Kayes has mapped out your nutrition and supplement program. What supplements does he recommend you take and does he have this program mapped out differently for this fight in particular?
[ RH ] For this fight I have to take in more protein than I have in the past. I use all of the
CNP stuff supplement range. I have many different
protein shakes and
meal replacement so I am getting the
calories and nutrients in the form of a liquid rather than solids which are easier to burn off and get into my system quicker.
I always make sure I have a recovery shake immediately after the workout. People normally decrease their weight by lowering the intake of food but I'm trying to bring my weight down slower, so I have increased my protein much more. There's no point in me going up 7 lbs of muscle if I look smooth, I have to look ripped. I have got to look the part and I believe a lot of it comes down to taking in different proteins and shakes.
[ KG ] Do you eat anything differently the day before and the day of the fights in comparison to what you eat in the weeks leading up to the fight?
[ RH ] No, not really. It's pretty much the same thing, but I would probably drink an extra serving of
Pro MR's and two or three
Pro Slams which are all Kerry's (Kayes) products. I like to eat smaller meals more often and with more protein. If I am moving up a weight, my
goals are bigger, and he more muscle I am carrying, the more I need to fuel it and this is why my diet is important.
[ KG ] I know bodybuilders will generally have something to pick them up before having a workout, like a coffee or a sugar fix. Do you have anything immediately before the fight to give you an extra edge?
[ RH ] I have a
Pro Slam. It's an all natural product which obviously Kerry advises. We also have a
Pro GF which I take to give me a nice boost in the morning on an empty stomach. I like to have a lot of fluids with starchy foods such as
pastas. This along with my protein shakes makes the perfect balance.
[ KG ] Does your weight training program generally recommend you work with heavy weights with low repetitions, or do you lean towards lighter weights assisted with higher reps?
[ RH ] I train with heavy weights and lower reps. I only train one body part once a week and I work with weights four times a week.
- Monday we will do legs.
- Tuesday we'll do shoulders.
- Wednesday we will do back.
- Friday we'll do chest and that's it really.
Many people like to train with lighter weights very fast and in an explosive manner, but I don't feel that this is building power.
It only enables you to move light weights quickly by getting assistance from other muscle groups. I find that I have always got to fail at the conclusion of my sets in order to get stronger. My workouts are short, explosive but are controlled and I only work one body part per week.
[ KG ] Does Kerry train you within the 8-12 rep range?
[ RH ] Yeah, reps of ten. Because we only train one body part at a time, and it is heavy and explosive, it only lasts for about twenty minutes. It's intense.
[ KG ] I understand you met Phil Heath when he was in the UK. Do you think someone of his strength, size and power would be any good in a boxing match?
[ RH ] Yeah I did meet Phil. He would certainly be good if he got used to being in close quarters, inside-fighting, body punching, short hooks and uppercuts. If he set it up close and grappled you, I think he would make a hell of a mess of you.
He is obviously trained for a different sport and his energy levels won't be as high because more muscle requires more fuel. He would probably run out of breath quicker, but if he got up to you I'm sure he would do some damage.
The amount of muscle he has, especially from a speed point of view would be his Achilles heel. I couldn't lift a quarter what Phil Heath lifts and Phil Heath probably wouldn't be as fast as me but we are from such different sports and we are both fantastic athletes in our own right.
[ KG ] It is said that fear is a universal emotion and it can provoke one to fight or flee. Would you say you have ever experienced fear when you were about to fight?
[ RH ] I suppose so. I would say it has always made me better. My two toughest opponents and two best opponents, has been
Kostya Tszyu and José Luis Castillo. I was a massive underdog against Kostya Tszyu and it was a 50/50 fight with
José Luis Castillo and no one expected me to knock him out in four rounds. So when my back is up against the wall that's when my best has come from me, and I think that's going to be my weapon next month.
I always find a way to win and I'll do that again on December 8. When my back is up against a wall I do have a little bit more fear than normal, it makes me better and sharper. It is all about the attitude of the person. Some people can use it to their advantage, others can't. I think all the great champions have been blessed with it and that is what sets them apart from the mediocre.
[ KG ] Thank you for your time Ricky. Bodybuilding.com really appreciates your time. I look forward to seeing the fight. Good luck to you!
[ RH ] Thanks a lot, no problem.
NEW: More On The Fight...
Press Conference Video:
|Hatton Vs. Mayweather
Press Conference Video.
Ricky Hatton Bio:
Born in Stockport, Greater Manchester, Hatton was raised on the Hattersley council estate in Hyde, Greater Manchester.
Both his grandfather and father played for Manchester City Football Club, and Hatton had a trial for the youth team. But Hatton found a local boxing club in Hyde, which he still trains at, and found he enjoyed the sport. Hatton's entrance music is the Manchester City FC club song "Blue Moon" as performed by the band "Supra." Aged 14, Hatton was taken by his uncles Ged and Paul to Manchester United's Old Trafford stadium to watch the second fight between Nigel Benn and Chris Eubank. Hatton joined the family carpet business after leaving school, but after cutting three of his fingers his father made him a salesman to protect his body.
Hatton adopted his "Hitman" nickname from professional wrestler Bret Hart rather than from fellow boxer Thomas Hearns.
Floyd Mayweather Jr. Bio:
Floyd Mayweather Jr., born February 24, 1977 in Grand Rapids, MI, USA. Mayweather, who was born with the name Floyd George Sinclair, is a professional boxer who has a record of 38-0 (24 KOs).
Since July 18, 2005, he has been rated by The Ring magazine as the number-one pound-for-pound boxer in the world. Mayweather has won six world boxing championships in five different weight classes, and he is the Super welterweight champion. His next fight will be against Ricky Hatton on December 8, 2007.
Quotes From The Fan's:
"Floyd Mayweather just wants to keep on fighting semi-retired old men. He has run up the weight divisions faster than Jesse Owens could have managed just to avoid people like Ricky Hatton and Miguel Cotto, Antonio Marguerita and Shane Mosley.
Hatton will knock Mayweather out whether they meet at junior-welter or welter. Ricky Hatton has Floyd's number, Mayweather will be ground down and stopped. No problem for Ricky."
"So now everyone thinks Mayweather is SCARED of this guy? That's too funny. Mayweather doesn't have anything to prove to any of you losers. You can bitch and whine all you want, but if he doesn't come back, that's his decision. You can't expect the man to punish his brain for as long as YOU guys want him to."
"Hattons the Man and Mayweather knows it. Thats why this fight will never happen. Lil floyd's more concerned about keeping his ego intact than fronting up to a real challenger. He know's he's never faced anybody like Hatton. Retirement is the best excuse he could use without losing face. Plain and simple, he knew Hatton was coming. Better safe than sorry aye Floyd?"
"Hattons a real champ and throughout his time in boxing he has never ducked a fight or opponent floyd has retired because he knows he cant beat a fighter of Hattons calibur and heart so you run lil floyd and retire just remember you will allways be remembered as the man who would,nt fight the pride of britton RICKY HIT MAN HATTON will be a legend in this country along with calzagie, mcguigan, cooper and fighters long since past i applaud you all."
"What a joke. Hatton's a mediocre fighter with NOBODY in his weight class. Castillo looked like a geriatric from the minute he stepped in the ring."
"It's not beyond the impossible that mayweather could avoid going toe to toe with hatton in a contest. In that scenario i would make mayweather favourite but on the other hand hatton has the ability to hurt mayweather, actually he could finish him period. As for those who talk about who hatton has fought, try the great Kostya. Yes he was old when they fought together but he was a truly great champion respected by every noticable in the fight game. Can the same be said about Mayweather?"
"Hatton is going to kick his ass and prove everyone wrong! It will be just like going out on a Saturday night in England, 1 big celebration!"
"Floyd has all the skills but, what's the point of having them if you're not using them? The only times we see the skills is when he fights an opponent he can use them on, older, slower fighters. Floyd is part of the reason Boxing is in the trash can now. He's a Champion but, on paper only."
Where Can I Watch The Fight?
Check out local HBO listings at: www.hbo.com
Hatton v Mayweather
Round By Round
Hatton: 5/24 - 21%
Mayweather: 12/37 - 32%
Hatton: 6/30 - 20%
Mayweather: 7/27 - 26%
Hatton: 7/36 - 19%
Mayweather: 11/27 - 41%
Hatton: 6/44 - 14%
Mayweather: 15/46 - 33%
Hatton: 13/54 - 24%
Mayweather: 6/25 - 24%
Hatton: 10/30 - 33%
Mayweather: 8/45 - 18%
Hatton: 6/41 - 15%
Mayweather: 12/36 - 33%
Hatton: 6/38 - 16%
Mayweather: 32/55 - 58%
Hatton: 4/44 - 9%
Mayweather: 15/31 - 48%
Hatton: 2/16 - 12%
Mayweather: 9/15 - 60%
While both fighters gave their all, in the end Mayweather proved himself to be the better fighter.