Former ONE Featherweight World Champion Honorio Banario has a few realizations as the year comes to a close.
The 30-year-old competed thrice this year but unfortunately, he came up short in all three bouts. Banario, a seasoned veteran, took these losses as lessons that would help him reclaim victory the next time he enters the ring.
“I would say that 2019 has been a year of learning and discovery for me,” Banario said.
“It was not my year as I have lost all my matches but there were a few wins that I was able to pick up along the way. My fellow athletes who I shared the ring with this year were truly amazing and on another level. They are one of the many motivating factors in my life to do better and I will continue to strive to be better.”
Last January in the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix Quarter-Finals, “The Rock” met Hawaiian powerhouse Lowen Tynanes. Banario was defeated in the first round via technical knockout. In August, he lost by unanimous decision to Dae Sung Park. Last October, Shinya Aoki took down Banario via first-round submission.
The Filipino athlete understood his shortcomings in his last three matches and vowed to work on improving himself so he can come back in 2020 stronger than ever.
“This year has taught me a lot as an athlete and a human being,” Banario said.
“As an athlete, I have learned that there are always other athletes who are better than me and pushing themselves further. I need to work harder than everyone else and, if possible, perfect my craft to be at their level or better.”
Although Banario’s professional career experienced a few setbacks, he recently married his longtime girlfriend Jessica and both welcomed their firstborn son Zeus in August.
“As a human being, I learned more about love,” Banario said.
“I married the most beautiful, supportive, caring, and understanding woman that I know. I am also blessed with a handsome son who gave me happiness that I have never felt before. My life has taken a new direction to support and love them with everything that I have.”
The Philippines is bustling and busy this time of the year when the holiday season is just around the corner and while Banario is on break, he is focused on spending more time with his new family.
“I am excited about the upcoming holidays,” Banario said.
“It would be my first Christmas and New Year as a husband and a father. I have been away from my family because of work and I plan to maximize every single second of this break with them. Of course, I will still go and train but I will allot more time for my family.”
Honorio Banario is thankful for the important lessons he learned this year. He vows to work even harder to be a better athlete in the future.
“I am thankful for 2019 and I am ready to welcome 2020,” Banario concluded.
“I am already working on the lessons I learned this year and you can expect a new better Honorio Banario for 2020.”
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 12/16/2019.