Nick Diaz competes at the XTERRA Pacific Championship last May, completing the triathlon in just 3 hours and 8 minutes. -- Photo via deltavelo.com
Nick Diaz and his trademark style of fighting will always be known for that high work-rate, volume punches, and unrelenting pace. He goes in there, he'll be taking punishment, but he will more-often than not, he will be able to sustain an incredible pace and will be able to outwork his opponent.
He's been doing that for years and will be riding an 11-fight winning streak heading to the weekend. One of the keys to that style has always been his elite level of conditioning, and Diaz says, that gives him the mental edge over his opponents:
"Fighters are afraid of conditioning, they are afraid of getting tired, but I don't want to have anxiety or be afraid of anything. I can go 100 percent out there and never have to worry about getting tired. Everybody says fighting is 90 percent mental, and it's true. Knowing you can go 15 minutes or 25 minutes without any problem can help you sustain that mental advantage over your opponent."
More after the jump.
Unlike most fighters who go through all these insane conditioning workouts in camp to get them ready, Diaz says he does all of that and more during his "off season", leaving him more time to work on fine tuning his MMA game during the lead up to the event:
"I just like to race. It gives me something to build for. During the triathlon season, I'll probably race every two weeks. I get stronger and stronger when building up to the race. After a race, a lot of people will crash and take their foot off the gas, but I'll keep building and building until I have to fight. I have a reason not to crash, and I try to keep the ball rolling until fight night."
"Doing the races keeps me in shape. By the time a fight comes around, I'm already in shape and ready to go. I don't have to get in shape for fights. When I am in the gym, I train mixed martial arts, I don't need to train to get in shape. I am already in shape."
That doesn't mean that during camp he completely forgets about his triathlon workouts though.
"If I'm not running, I'm going to go for a swim or go on a bike ride. I don't like being stationary at any point during training."
Not really surprising, coming from a guy who has gone on record saying he'd actually leave MMA if he can get paid a lot for triathlons.
Diaz will be taking on Carlos Condit, and when both guys go toe-to-toe this weekend, their style of fighting pretty much guarantees to be one of the most entertaining bouts this year no matter who comes out victorious. Both guys have excellent conditioning, both are tough and gritty as hell, but if the 5-round affair gets decided on who has the deeper gas tank, don't expect Diaz to be the one who falters.