I was recently watching/listening to your interview on MMA Hour in
which you discussed your nutrition, among other things. I wanted to commend you
on trying to understand what it’s like living gluten free. I have a 2 1/2 year
old son who is allergic to wheat (not just gluten), milk and eggs. We as
parents don’t have any food related allergies so at first it was very difficult
to grasp just what kind of impact this would have on our son, and in the end,
us. Although food allergies are becoming more recognized, people who aren’t
affected don’t realize just how serious they can be. One bite of the wrong
thing could send my son into epileptic shock and possibly kill him. It’s
amazing how much it has changed our lives and the way we look at things. As you
mentioned it’s not just the ingredients in something that you have to be
concerned about. The facilities where it’s produced, the machines, the
packaging, everything needs to be free of the allergen. Things like modified
food starch, which can be derived from wheat, can be on a package label but it’s
not required to even state that it may contain wheat. That’s just one example,
but it really changes your life and the way you look at nutrition in general.
In the end I’m actually happy because he eats far healthier than most
I’ve been a huge fan of yours for a long time and it’s not
just for the way you do your job in the cage, but the way you carry yourself
that’s the most impressive. If more people tried something as life changing as
trying to go gluten free they would have a greater understanding of how
difficult it can be for those who absolutely can’t consume that particular
thing. Most people aren’t educated and it’s great to see someone like yourself
use the fame you have to educate people. It kills me every time I tell someone
that my son is allergic to wheat and they say, “Oh he can’t have gluten? Well
there’s lots of gluten free products out there.” They don’t realize that
products can be free of gluten but still contain wheat, so my son can’t have
those either. I honestly commend you on trying to live without gluten, it’s a
tough task. And doing it all just to further your understand of how others
might have to live on a daily basis is even more commendable.
for everything you’re doing to try and educate people on this subject. Good
luck with the shoulder recovery and I can’t wait to see you back in the cage
Some people depend on their morning coffee to get them going for their day. I personally do not drink coffee, and avoid any supplements containing caffeine. It is not something I need to give me the boost for a great workout. On rare occasions, I may allow myself a caffeinated drink, if I need a pick-me-up. So how bad is your morning coffee?
Caffeine is a drug that stimulates both the nervous system and the heart. There have been studies that both, link it to high blood pressure, as well as discount the misnomer. However, it will increase blood pressure until the effects of the drug wears off…which usually takes several hours. Caffeine’s effect on the nervous system is difficulty to concentrate and often fidgetiness. It can affect the body’s absorption of minerals, particularly calcium. It also affects the absorption of prescription drugs; so double-checking with your doctor is a good idea if your caffeine consumption is high and you are taking prescription medication.
On the positive side, it will raise your basal metabolic rate causing you to burn more calories during the hours of its effect. Coffee also contains trace amounts of several vitamins. If you limit your consumption to 1 or 2 cups (8oz. each-about 200mg of caffeine total), the effect should be just the pick-me-up you are looking for, and the caffeine is basically harmless in moderation.
Here is where you may run into problems. If you decide to stop at your local coffee shop and grab a venti (20 oz.), you increase the chance of consuming excess caffeine. Lets not even bother discussing the nutritional pitfall of the cream, sugar and whipped topping for the purpose of this article. The potency of caffeine can vary from bean to bean with coffee, and brewing can affect the concentration of the caffeine as well. Your body also builds a tolerance…so careful, careful.
Finally, avoid making energy drinks a habit. Most carbonated drinks are acidic, and caffeine also creates an acidic environment in the body. If you are drinking sugar free, you are consuming artificial sweeteners as well as artificial flavors (all chemicals). Not to mention some of these energy drinks are 20 oz themselves, and the caffeine concentration per ounce is often higher than coffee. Although processing creates impurities in caffeine…caffeine is still caffeine.
Article by Rich Franlin–
My First Fight: Rich Franklin
But if you hopped in a time machine and told the Rich Franklin of 1993 — then a senior at William Henry Harrison High School in Ohio — that this UFC stuff he was watching with his friends would eventually become his career, he probably would have laughed in your time-traveling face.
“I had no aspirations of becoming a pro fighter or anything like that,” Franklin says now. “But I saw the first UFC and I was immediately hooked.”
Sure, he did a little karate. He was even his sensei’s star pupil, and he felt pretty good about it. But in Franklin’s mind, that was as far as it went. He liked sports, and he also felt like he should know how to defend himself. That’s why, when he saw the UFC for the first time in November of 1993, it was an eye-opener.
I was like really? They were going to put me against this big guy? He was at least 50 pounds heavier than me.
– Rich Franklin”I remember thinking, if I ever get into a fight on the street I’d better know how to fight on the ground, because clearly some people know a lot more about it than others. So I started doing jiu-jitsu.”
Fortunately, there was a Gracie Jiu-Jitsu chapter in Cincinnati. As a college student studying to be a high school math teacher, Franklin began learning the finer points of the ground game. One thing led to another, and soon he added some kickboxing into his regimen. It was fun, and that was enough. At least for a little while. Then his friend, Josh Rafferty (later a contestant on the first season of The Ultimate Fighter, put a simple question to Franklin.
“He said to me, ‘Look man, all you do is train, go to school, come home, and train some more. You train all day, so why don’t you try one of these fights and see if the training you’re doing is actually paying off?’ That’s why I took my first fight.”
But this was still Ohio in 1998, so it’s not as if there were major MMA events taking place every weekend. What few there were in the region weren’t exactly advertised on TV, either. Franklin and his friends had to ask around, but eventually they heard a rumor that there were regular fights at a gym in Muncie, Indiana. Franklin and Rafferty made the drive and sat through the entire event, which ended with a 6’2″, 260-pound self-described “Meat Truck” by the name of Kerry Schall putting a beating on some football player.
“I looked at Josh at the end of the night and said, ‘You know what? I think I could do this. Let’s give it a shot.’ We saw a flyer as we were leaving for another show about three months later and we decided, okay, this is the one we’ll train for.”
The good news was that training for an unregulated amateur fight in a gym in Indiana in 1998 was that you did not need to worry about cutting weight. You also didn’t need to worry about seeing a doctor or passing medicals. You simply called up the promoter and told him you wanted a fight, and then you called him up two weeks before the fight to reassure him that you weren’t going to back out. Then you showed up on fight night and waited your turn.
The bad news, Franklin soon realized, is that you had no idea who you’d be fighting. This hit home as he was sitting in the audience watching the night’s first few fights and talking with Schall, who he recognized from the previous event he’d attended.
“We introduced ourselves and Kerry said, ‘Oh, you’re the guy I was supposed to fight tonight, but I had to pull out because I’m sick,’” Franklin recalls. “I was like, really? They were going to put me against this big guy? He was at least 50 pounds heavier than me.”
But before he had too much of a chance to dwell on the implications of this revelation, the announcer called his name and summoned him to the cage. As Schall would delight in telling people years later, after he and Franklin had become good friends, when Franklin heard his own name he simply stood up, pulled off his tearaway warm-up pants like a male stripper, and strolled into the cage, ready to fight.
So I just let it go, and the crowd — all 200 of them or whatever it was — went from screaming and yelling to completely speechless.
– Rich FranklinThe other guy, as Franklin remembers it, was not quite as excited about the whole deal.
“He looked uneasy. As soon as we stepped in the cage, he looked like he didn’t really want to be there. I looked at his demeanor and his posture and I was like, I got this one in the bag. He was in something that he did not want to be in.”
As soon as the action started, Franklin realized why. His opponent that night — Franklin swears he was known only by the name ‘Seymour’ (“I guess he was like Madonna or something. He just had the one name. He was Seymour.”) — didn’t seem like he was quite ready for an amateur fight against a man who had five years of experience in both grappling and striking at a time when most fighters still specialized in one at the expense of the other.
But even though he quickly saw that his skills were ahead of Seymour’s, Franklin wasn’t totally sure what to do about it.
“This is how dumb I was: we come out and we’re mixing it up, and I end up taking him down. I’m kind of cross-mounted on him and I have a submission, but I let it go and go to another submission, and I have a shoulder lock almost completely locked out, but then I thought, you know, I trained all these months, all these years, for a 30-second fight? I’m going to let him up. So I just let it go, and the crowd — all 200 of them or whatever it was — went from screaming and yelling to completely speechless.”
Franklin released the submission and stood up. He indicated to Seymour that he, too, should get up. This seemed to confuse everyone — especially Seymour — and even Franklin soon had second thoughts.
“He got up and we mixed it up on our feet some more, but it was clear to me that I was just a step above this level of competition. At that point, I started to feel a little bad. Like, why didn’t I just finish him when I knew I had him beat? This is kind of a jerk thing to do.”
So Franklin handed out a tough dose of mercy in the form of a knee to the gut. Seymour collapsed on the mat. The ref stepped in and waved it off. A little over two minutes after it had started, his first MMA fight was over. After the way it had gone, he wasn’t quite sure what to think about it.
“I thought it would just be that one fight. Then a couple months later somebody asked me about doing another one and I thought, why not?”
Part of his enthusiasm was just a consequence of being an ignorant youth, he says. “Early in my fight career, I really thought I was the baddest man on the planet. I was young and stupid.”
I was like, whoa, you can actually make money fighting? That’s where it first clicked.
– Rich FranklinBut it was also the fact that, for one reason or another, the high school math teacher didn’t fully appreciate the risks he was taking.
“It wasn’t until my third amateur fight, where I kicked this guy in the jaw and broke his jaw in like three places — hurt him pretty bad, actually — that I finally took a step back and realized, hey, that could have been me. These are the consequences of fighting, and you never know who you’re getting in the cage with. From that point on, you start thinking about it a little more. The reality of things starts weighing on you a little more.”
Shortly thereafter the local promoter pulled Franklin aside and politely suggested he find a bigger organization to compete in, one with fighters who might give him more resistance. That’s when a different promoter offered him a couple hundred dollars to fight in his event, and a light bulb went off in Franklin’s head.
“I was like, whoa, you can actually make money fighting? That’s where it first clicked.”
Gradually the purses and the events got bigger, and in his fourth year of teaching Franklin decided to give up his full-time job at an Ohio high school in order to pursue fighting as a career.
“Before that I’d make a thousand bucks here or there and have a little extra money to buy Christmas gifts or something. But to do this and really make money at it? That was a pretty wild idea. The sport was only just then evolving to the point where people were starting to make real money at it,” he says now. “That fourth year I took like three fights and I won and ended up quitting my job. Seems like it all panned out pretty well.”
For Immediate Release:
October 13, 2011
RICH “ACE” FRANKLIN’S SHOULDER SURGERY A SUCCESS
Cincinnati, Ohio – Former UFC Middleweight
Champion Rich “Ace” Franklin underwent shoulder surgery yesterday to
repair his torn labrum, an injury that occurred during a grappling practice last
month. Franklin’s manager, JT Stewart, announced today the surgery was a
complete success and that he is expected to make a full recovery.
“I spoke with Rich, he’s feeling great and as soon
as the doctor gives him the go-ahead, he’s ready to start training again,” said
Stewart. “If everything goes as expected, UFC fans could see Rich Franklin back
in the Octagon in late summer.”
The surgery took place yesterday morning in
Franklin’s hometown of Cincinnati. He will require several months of rehabilitation
before returning to a full mixed martial arts training schedule.
Franklin was scheduled to fight Antonio Rogerio
Nogueira as the co-main event of UFC 133, but the fight was pulled from the
card when it was announced that Nogueira was injured and unable to compete.
Franklin last fought at UFC 126 on February 5,
2011 in a light heavyweight bout against former 205-pound champion Forrest
Griffin. Overall, he holds a record of 28-6-0, 1NC and has battled the
who’s who of fighting legends in the UFC including Chuck Liddell, Anderson
Silva, Vitor Belfort, Dan Henderson, Wanderlei Silva, Yushin Okami and Matt
Holding a Master’s Degree in Education, Franklin
was a high school Math teacher when he first started training in mixed martial
arts. After finding success as professional fighter, he eventually left his
career in education to pursue the sport full-time. In 2005, he reached
the pinnacle in mixed martial arts when he defeated the late Evan Tanner to win
the UFC middleweight title.
Since then, Franklin has risen as one of the
most popular fighters in the world and a UFC fan favorite. He serves as a
spokesperson for Disabled American Veterans, runs the successful lifestyle
brand of clothing “American Fighter” and has recently entered the
world of acting with roles in “Cyborg Soldier” and “The
In July, it was announced that Eric Eisner’s
Double E Pictures will produce a film chronicling the story of Franklin’s life
titled, “American Fighter.”
For more information about Rich “Ace”
Franklin, please visit www.richfranklin.com, and Facebook.com/pages/RichFranklin and follow
on Twitter @followace.
Jen Wenk, APR
“The Hammer” (formerly titled, “Hamill”) is finally hitting theaters on October
27th! I play Matt Hamill’s Purdue wrestling coach in the film. Please go to www.TheHammerPremiere.com for
theater information. Also, for more information on the film visit www.TheHammerFilm.com. Thanks for the