Diego Sanchez has long been one of the more enigmatic figures in mixed martial arts. TUF 1 showed off his unique personality training methods and personality. Since then, he has gone from The Nightmare to The Dream and back to The Nightmare again, and we’ve seen him do some things that are...well, different. He’s just not your average Joe. And yet another example of that came in a recent interview on The MMA Hour.
Sanchez, who will fight the returning Al Iaquinta this weekend at UFC Nashville, was a recent guest on Ariel Helwani’s popular show and spoke about a recent health scare he suffered while training. And he’s pretty sure what caused it - marijuana. (transcribed by Bleacher Report):
"I hit the ground, and I felt something inside my heart," he recalled. "It wasn't, like, a muscular injury. It was something internal. ... I just laid down and said, 'I'm done for the week.'"
"The moment I laid down at the back of [that gym], I instantly knew it was because of that medical marijuana."
"Whatever happened, it was serious," Sanchez said. "I could feel something going on, and I was very, very terrified that if I got my heart rate back up that I could, like, die or something."
Despite this serious scare, Sanchez (27-9, 16-9 UFC) didn’t go to the doctor or a hospital initially, choosing to just take some time off of training and stuck to fasting and praying. He said that he had obtained a medical marijuana license late last year and had been smoking since then. But eventually he did decide to go to the hospital, thinking that this could have been a potentially career-ending issue. The doctor said it was a “muscular injury” and that his heart was “perfectly fine.” He didn’t see it that way:
"My lungs were being affected," he said. "And I still had the mentality to train like a warrior, so when [the heart issue] happened to me, that day at the gym, I was still experimenting with medical marijuana. ... I did it, and I loved it, and I got my medicinal medicine. ... I'm not judging. I'm saying that medical marijuana's not for everybody, and it's not for me."