Free Sample: Ricky Hatton on rediscovering his desire to compete

We give you a snippet of our extensive interview with 'The Hitman' ahead of his long-awaited return to the ring against Vyacheslav Senchenko on 24 November

05 November 2012    |    0 Comments

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Image courtesy of: Mark Robinson

To find out Ricky Hatton's 10 steps to getting in fighting shape, click here to get yourself the latest issue of Fighting Fit. To buy this edition via our app, please click here.

The marriage between Ricky Hatton and boxing has not always been a happy one. The sport can be both a cruel mistress and a capricious spouse; the huge amount Hatton put in was not always reciprocated. After his brutal three-round demolition at the fists of Manny Pacquiao in 2009, divorce looked on the cards, Hatton sinking into a depression that begat heavy drinking and a brief, but highly publicised, dalliance with drugs. However, against the odds and following a three-year trial separation, the couple have reunited. They will renew their vows in an intensely public setting, on 24 November at Manchester's MEN Arena, with around 18,000 fans acting as witnesses. Hatton can only hope opponent Vyacheslav Senchenko, the accomplished former WBA welterweight champion, does not spoil the ceremony.

The depth and nature of this reconciliation between Manchester's 'Hitman' and the sport that has dominated his life appeared fanciful at best just five months ago, despite Ricky having made the first move by starting to train other fighters. Hatton still scaled 206lbs when he first began taking “baby steps” towards getting his fitness back, but bit by bit - and with the right exercises and routines - the weight gradually disappeared, his conditioning improved and, almost imperceptibly, the love returned. Eight weeks before his comeback bout, the ex-two-weight world champion is down to 160lbs and consumed by a new enthusiasm, a fire rekindled.

“There was a decision made, on my own,” he says quietly but with purpose. “My little baby had just come along - Millie - and that made me pull my socks up.

“I was coming in the gym, enjoying working with the lads and passing my knowledge on, getting them fit, working on tactics - and I got a little bit of a spring in my step. I started to get fitter, started losing weight, Millie was about three or four months at the time and I wanted to get my act together for her as well. Bit by bit I started getting into my training more and more - roadwork, working on the bags, started a diet, stayed off the beer, and the weight started to fly off . Life started feeling good again.

“When I fought Kostya Tszyu my dream was to become a world champion so I had that real burning desire. I want to be a world champion again but the desire is different. It's more to redeem myself, right all the wrongs I’ve done in that three-year period where I fell by the wayside. I feel like I've let so many people down - my community, myself, my family, my fans, British sport - so the desire to redeem myself is a lot stronger than to be a world champion for me now.” But to make this new dream a realistic target, Hatton and trainer Bob Shannon, utilised methods old, new and borrowed - from Ricky's first pro coach Billy Graham - although, inconveniently for the rabid Manchester City fan, nothing blue.

Over the next five pages Ricky reveals and demonstrates the 10 key types of training that helped him lose 46lbs - by fight night it will likely be around 59lbs - and get back into shape for his comeback.

To find out Ricky Hatton's 10 steps to getting in fighting shape, click here to get yourself the latest issue of Fighting Fit. To buy this edition via our app, please click here.

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Fighting Fit is published by Newsquest Specialist Media, the world’s leading combat sport publisher. Other titles include Boxing News, The Boxing News Annual and The Boxing News Health & Fitness Series

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