Mike Dolce Explains The Challenges Of Working With Rampage Jackson
“Chael was 233 pounds six weeks before the Michael Bisping fight. To go from 233 to 185 in six weeks is insane. The hardest issue — I would have to say Rampage is the hardest I’ve ever had to deal with. Not because he was the biggest or heaviest because he wasn’t. I helped Duane Ludwig lose 42 pounds in 13 days to fight Jim Miller on short notice here in Las Vegas. He went from 198 to 156 in 13 days with my coaching. It took eight weeks to do the same with Quinton. Now it was so much easier with Duane because Duane is a professional; he’s a good guy with a big heart. He just got down to the business of working with no complaints, no objections, no obstacles. Some of these other guys, Rampage being one of them, everything was a challenge. He’s shown that not just with myself but with every business deal he’s ever been in.
He had taken 14 months off to film “The A-Team” and “The Ultimate Fighter.” He came into camp 51 pounds overweight before the fight – seven weeks and six days before the fight.
We weren’t behind schedule, but we weren’t ahead of schedule. But I worry. I wasn’t satisfied with it. I talked to Quinton and he said, “I’m not cheating. I’m not doing anything wrong.”
A day does by and we go to train. It’s a three-story house and Quinton lives on the top floor. He forgets his gym bag, so I say I’ll go up there and get his gym bag. I go up and look and I see something that doesn’t look right inside his pillow – a purple box, or a square. I say, “What the hell is that?” I walk over and see it’s a candy bar, a Cadbury fruit and nut candy bar. There were four of them. Under the bed there were more wrappers. So what he was doing was, we would go and get gas before the gym. We’d sit in the car and fill it up. He’d go in to pay for the gas and the window would be right there, right below window level was the candy rack. He’d buy a bunch of these candy bars and put them in his pocket and go home and eat them.
I caught it and he turned it into a joke. So I say, “What we’re going to do is compromise: You’ve got a chocolate thing. I get it. I understand it. Therefore, I’ve got a healthy alternative to it.” In that area in England, the healthiest thing I could find was Nutella, which is really not that bad considering the alternative. It’s a mental thing, not a physical thing, so I start making him Nutella sandwiches, telling him, “It’s the best thing in the world — toasted, warm, crunchy and with banana slices. It’s delicious. That’s what we’ll have if you train your ass off. You’ll get those as a reward system.” We started to do that and the weight dropped immediately.”
In an interview with the Las Vegas Sun, famed dietitian and “UFC FIT” developer Mike Dolce explains his toughest challenge as coach.