It ain't easy being a big man in a world of smaller guys.
Just ask undefeated prospect Jared Rosholt, who said an "ibuprofen diet" is a requirement during training, when he does everything his smaller and more agile Team Takedown teammates do.
Admittedly, though, he pays the price for it.
"I wake up everyday and grab some ibuprofen and say, 'Let's get this started,'" Rosholt told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio
). "I'm on an ibuprofen diet during this training camp."
Rosholt hopes the grueling work pays dividends tonight at Legacy Fighting Championship 13 at the Dallas Convention Center in Texas. Rosholt (4-0) and Derrick Lewis (7-2) headlined the AXS TV-televised event, and the organization's vacant heavyweight title is on the line.
It's the final challenge for Rosholt before a much-needed break.
"I do every workout these small guys do, these welterweights and 185-pounders and 205-pounders," he said. "I do every workout. Everything. At 263 pounds, I think working hard and doing these things, they wear you out."
As it turns out, Rosholt can do almost everything the other guys do. After all, his brother, former UFC fighter Jake Rosholt, gained some Internet fame with his video showing him jumping out of 3 feet of water – backward and forward – from a standing-still position.
Jared Rosholt doesn't have that type of agility, though he has come to embrace his water workouts.
"We do quite a bit of swimming," he said. "At least once a week we do laps and swimming exercises to give our bodies a rest without so much wear and tear. You'd think me being the whale of the group, I couldn't do so well. I may look like a whale, but I win the races almost every time.
"Swimming is just awesome. It's really hard. It's good cardiovascular (exercise) without running and jamming your knees and back and pounding on them. It's good for elastic muscles and legs. It's pretty much injury free."
In addition to his breaststroke, Rosholt has spent plenty of time working on his hands in recent months. Rosholt was a 2010 NCAA Division I national runner-up and three-time All-American wrestler who picked up more wins than any other heavyweight in Oklahoma State University history.
The wrestling skills will always be his base, but the striking makes it so much easier.
"I really like the striking," he said. "It's really interesting learning to put combinations together. I've blended it pretty well with my wrestling lately. It's the perfect setup. If you can get [opponents] covering their heads with their hands, that's gold. You don't get much better opportunities for a double-leg takedown than that."
The 26-year-old Rosholt is just four fights and 19 months into his pro campaign. But like any other prospect, he wants in the UFC. While he's happy to improve his skills on the regional circuit, he's reminded often that he's ready now for the big show.
"Just watching these guys who fight in the UFC right now, it's hard to watch because I'm like, 'These are the so-called gatekeepers? The top 10?'" Rosholt said. "Watching them, I'm like, 'I think I could really run through some of these guys.'
"But that's the future. Experience is what's going to me there. ... Within the next year, I want to be in the UFC and show these guys what I can do."