This past couple of weeks has been a blur for me. I barely had a chance to relax for a few odd days after a heavy, three-week travel schedule, when I flew back out to Las Vegas to promote International Fight Week and take in the cards over the weekend.
This was my first time taking part in the Expo part of Fight Week, so I didn’t really know what to expect. There were a ton of different fighters from all over the world, which was pretty cool, and it was interesting to see some of these them in real life.
The fan experience side of things was kind of overwhelming, both in a good way and a bad one. Maybe not “bad,” but definitely tiring. Obviously it was great to interact with the fans and take pictures and do all kinds of silly stuff for photos and things like that.
It’s funny when someone wants to have you put them in a submission hold for a photo or have a fierce staredown. They would come excited and knowing exactly what they wanted. Hardcore fans do not mess around. They’re efficient, well-planned and direct. You’ve got to respect that kind of organization and dedication.
When it came to how many hours we were at each of the signings, that’s when it started to get a little bit draining. As soon as I got off the plane, I went straight to work for Metro PCS, and after that, I had another signing. I think Friday I had two signings back to back. It was nonstop like that for four days straight. Even some of the fans were coming up to us and noting how long we’d been there each day, how we must be exhausted after doing hours and hours of this stuff.
Now, mind you, I didn’t do myself any favors by staying out late at night, but even for the guys that weren’t doing that, they were feeling it just as much as I was. I’m pretty sure I was feeling it a lot worse, though. I got no rest, I’ll admit it. I ran a 5K marathon on literally no sleep, at all.
I went out to Hakkasan and ripped it up with some of the other fighters; Brian Ortega, Corey Anderson, Tecia, OSP and a few other people. I just didn’t sleep that night. I pulled a full all-nighter, just barely lying in my bed for about five minutes. Then my alarm goes off, and all I could think was “F*ck my life right now.”
That 5K run came around way too early. And I actually ran it. I thought about walking it, but I ran the whole thing. After a long night like that, going to the club, getting crazy on the dance floor, staying up all night and then running a marathon, I learned a whole lot about myself. I learned a lot about mental toughness and pushing my body to the limits. And I learned that I need to take my own drinking advice.
That four days was one long, 96-hour marathon of fun, but needless to say, when my head hit the pillow in my own bed back home, it didn’t leave it for a very long time.