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In The Arena Blog

Enson Inoue Speaks About Embracing Fatigue

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When MMA Legend Enson Inoue teaches seminars, students don’t just show up to learn some techniques. They want to hear what this warrior has to say on many topics, especially how to strengthen your mindset to prepare for battle. Hear what he has to say about training through fatigue.


Enson Inoue:
What I wanted to address was what goes into your head when you hit fatigue. What is the normal thing that goes into most people’s heads when they hit the fatigue? Oh fuck. Right?


Especially when I tell you, I’m not going to tell you the time. I might fuck with you and make you go longer? You’re like, “Oh fuck. How long are we going?” It’s a bad thing, right? In the fights and training, whenever you guys fatigue, the first thing you guys think is, “Oh fuck.” Okay, let’s change that. Okay.


Fatiguing in a fight is a good thing. You guys say, “Why?” Okay, what I believe is when you fatigue, from every second when you think in your heart that you can’t go on and you do, you’re building yourself. Think of that. When you’re fatiguing and you’re continuing, you feel that fatigue come in and instead of thinking, “Oh shit, my body’s fatiguing. Oh, my core’s fatiguing. Oh, my arm’s going to start soon.” And you start thinking the negative thoughts, think about this. Think about this, “Okay, I’m fatiguing, my core’s fatiguing, but now every time I go past this point, I’m getting stronger. My core is getting stronger.” Not only your body, but mentally. Mentally, where you would have stopped. You know, a lot of times you can keep going because the instructor is telling you keep going, but you should be able to do it by yourself. You got to play a games at your mind and go and beyond that, beyond that. Tell yourself, five more seconds. I always do that when I’m in my gym, when I feel like I can’t turn another punch, I just do five punches at a time. When I can’t do five and it gets sloppy, I do three punches at a time. And it comes to a point where I do one at a time.


Yeah. So, it’s a mindset. So, when you guys feel fatigue or you have, you know, like you go in the gym, you guys know, you guys train every day, you go in the gym and today you’re flat. Fuck. That’s good. Why? You’re going to feel that one day in the fight, you might even feel it in the middle of the fight in the third round, and what are you going to do in that situation? You can never go negative in your fight. You’ve got to always stay positive. So, what’s going to happen if you train that, you’re going to say you’ve already been through that in the training so you know what you can and what you cannot do. You know what you have to tell yourself mentally to overcome those obstacles. Yeah? So, for me, if I’m fatiguing and I’m thinking every second, every five seconds, depending on the interval, how tired I am, and it gets shorter and shorter intervals. But I’ll think every 10 seconds I go on, I’m getting stronger. I’m becoming a stronger person mentally and physically. Maybe for Barret, he’s in better shape than me. Maybe he has to push another minute. Yeah? So, every person is different, but you have to learn for yourself what you’re going to tell yourself to continue.


There’s going to be times … The ring is a very small thing. You win and lose. That’s it. If you get knocked out, doctors will check you. But I always train for the streets. Yeah? If I give up on the streets is when I die. Okay? So, when I’m in the gym, I’m taking that opportunity to become a stronger person in the ring and in the gym, so what I do is I try to, when I feel fatigue, I feel like I’m lucky because now I got that chance to work through the fatigue. I get a chance to build my mental state. I get a chance to build myself as a fighter and as a person. Okay? Makes sense?

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