It began when the former champion endured a terrible weight cut ahead of his rematch against Robbie Lawler, as was evident from his lethargic movements in the later stages of the fight. In fact, it was such a dreadful process that Hendricks contemplated retirement just to shield himself from another such cut.
However, after months of self-control and determination, Hendricks returned to the Octagon in March, without Mike Dolce by his side, and was still able to make weight with relative ease. It was a sign that the wrestler had finally taken his eating habits seriously.
"My diet between fights is...don't eat a while Pizza Pizza," Hendricks explained during a media scrum at UFC on FOX 15. "Eat a little bit of it. I'm still on my diet. Instead of blowing up to 220 (pounds), I'm at 202-203 (pounds). I've been lifting weights for the last month now. I've gotten back into the gym trying to fix up some holes.
"I'm feeling better about that. Even at training, I feel better at 202 (pounds) - 100 percent better than what I felt at 220 (pounds). I'm not as fat anymore. I'm actually doing more stuff; lift and stuff, and that is something that we got away form for about three years. We didn't lift at all because I was always stronger than everyone else."
While Hendricks is clearly more comfortable during his training camps after slimming down, he is still not a fan of the constant dieting, and would not say no to an eventual move up to middleweight.
"Let's say that I wait until November-December, which for the last few years is nothing for me; that's when I've been fighting - March and December. It something does happen and I make that move, I'm making it permanently.
"Me not making 170 (pounds) is alright with me (laughs)"