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Greatest Ever Boxing Workouts

Greatest Ever Boxing Workouts

by Gary Todd

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The sequel to Workouts from Boxing's Greatest Champs will KO all boxing and combat sport enthusiasts

Featuring a classic coterie of international boxing legends, this superb anthology is illustrated throughout with some of the best photos of them at work in the ring or training in the gym. Celebrated present-day fighters and former champions


The sequel to Workouts from Boxing's Greatest Champs will KO all boxing and combat sport enthusiasts

Featuring a classic coterie of international boxing legends, this superb anthology is illustrated throughout with some of the best photos of them at work in the ring or training in the gym. Celebrated present-day fighters and former champions featured here range from the instantly recognizable Manny Pacquiao, Floyd Mayweather, Jr., Mike Tyson, Thomas Hearns, and Roberto Duran to such respected international figures as Danny Williams and Vitali Klitschko. Incorporating career biographies for every fighter, the reader is introduced to the fitness and training regimes of some of the world's most physically powerful men. Culled from the author's original research and interviews, the greatest ever champion pugilists grant us a fly-on-the-wall look at their typical day and their personal workout regimes. Not just a boxing fan's album but a fitness guide for those looking for a seriously effective workout, this book grants the reader vital knowledge from the Olympian gods of pugilism.

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John Blake Publishing, Limited
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4.90(w) x 7.60(h) x 0.40(d)

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Greatest Ever Boxing Workouts

By Gary Todd

John Blake Publishing Ltd

Copyright © 2013 Gary Todd
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-85782-815-3



Country: Australia

Date of birth: 21 May 1975

Wins: 37 (23 KOs)

Losses: three

WBA Fedelatin Super Middleweight Champion

WBA Pan African Super Middleweight Champion

IBF Pan Pacific Super Middleweight Champion

WBA Super Middleweight Champion of the World

IBO Middleweight Champion of the World

Anthony Mundine stormed into the super middleweight division in July 2000, with an amazing sell-out crowd of over 10,000 people in Sydney, Australia turning up to see if 'the Man' could really fight. Mundine had been telling everyone that would listen that he was going to be champion of the world. It was a bold statement from a boxer who hadn't even had his first fight.

He won it easily, and his next seven matches were no different. In September 2001, Mundine defended his newly-won IBF Pan Pacific title against Sam Soliman, fighting out a hard-earned points win to take one more step towards a world title shot.

He had his sights set on the strategically brilliant German champion Sven Ottke's IBF belt, and was confident of ripping it away from him. Along with his famous boxer father, Tony, Mundine travelled to Dortmund, Germany to challenge the IBF king in December 2001, after only ten professional fights.

I remember telling 'Choc' Mundine he would have to prepare for Ottke with serious sparring; he was in with the big boys now. Mundine fought tremendously well and shook the unbeaten champion up, but in the tenth round he was knocked cold by Ottke.

He lost but fought well, and I believe it was Ottke's ring experience, both amateur and professional, that made all the difference. Mundine had learned a valuable lesson in German.

'The Man' returned to his gym in the mean streets of Redfern, Sydney, and trained harder than ever before. He built up an impressive winning record that shot him up the WBA world rankings and earned him another chance at a world championship. To win, he had to face the experienced puncher Antwun Echols. They fought in Sydney for the vacant WBA Super Middleweight Championship of the World.

Come fight night, Mundine boxed like a veteran. He frustrated and bamboozled Echols, with his stick-and-move style, to realise his dream of becoming champion of the world. Mundine silenced his critics and fulfilled his ambition after only three years as a fighter. What a night to remember!

But winning the title was one thing, keeping it was another.

The new champion successfully defended his world title against the ageing Japanese brawler Yoshinori Nishizawa, and then took on the big-punching Puerto Rican Manny Siaca in 2004. Siaca had been around the super middleweight world for years, so this was always going to be a hard day at the office for the new champ. He lost his title by a split decision.

That could have been it, but no. Mundine came back again with more TKO wins.

Meanwhile, across the world, Manny Siaca had lost his title to the unbeaten Danish fighter Mikkel Kessler, in his first defence. Kessler had also been around a while, but was relatively unknown outside of Europe. He was a young, strong, hungry warrior who was just too much for Siaca.

In June 2005, Mundine lured Kessler, 'the Viking Warrior', to Australia, in a challenge for his old title. With both fighters looking in superb peak condition, Kessler and Mundine put on a show which went the championship distance. Kessler won by unanimous decision to retain his WBA title. Although he was beaten, this was Mundine's best night in the ring by far.

Earlier on in that same year, Mundine's longtime rival Danny Green had been in search of his own piece of greatness, travelling to Germany to face the WBC champion Marcus Beyer, but was tactically out-boxed, losing on points.

With both fighters at a career crossroads, it was announced that the two would finally meet for the biggest domestic fight Australia had ever seen.

Green was the favourite to stop Mundine. With national pride at stake, Green and his team shut themselves away in their training camp, while Mundine continued to train at his gym, later setting up a rough-and-ready makeshift camp in 'the bush' of Barulgil, some six hours' drive from Sydney.

With both men mentally and physically prepared, Green entered the ring to the sound of Men at Work's 'Down Under', sending the 30,000-plus crowd into a frenzy. Mundine entered the ring surrounded by bodyguards to the sound of the aborigines' ceremonial didgeridoo.

Green was fired up, as expected, and tried to target Mundine's body to take his legs away. But after round four, the aggressive Green could not get near him. Mundine threw the more stinging combinations, landing with pinpoint accuracy to eventually out-box 'the Green Machine' over 12 exciting rounds.

Since beating Green, Mundine has recaptured the WBA Super Middleweight title by absolutely destroying Sam Soliman over nine one-sided rounds. He then went the distance in his first defence against the tough but limited Argentinian fighter Pablo Daniel Zamora Nievas, in June 2007.

Fast forward to the present. Mundine has fought and beaten all who came before him, but has never ventured out of Australia. It could be said that he has never stepped up to where he should be, as he's a world-class fighter.

At 34, Mundine has to make his move on the division's best fighters now. He has everything to gain and nothing to lose or to prove – except perhaps to himself.


What time do you get up in the morning?


Do you stretch before you run?

Yes, usually for about ten minutes.

How far do you run?

Tuesdays and Thursdays I run four miles.

Monday and Friday I do six miles. Wednesday is rest day.

After your roadwork, what do you do?

I work on my strength (neck exercises using a harness and weights).

What do you have for your breakfast?

Cereal, Turkish bread with scrambled eggs and beans. Fruit juice, water.

What time do you go to the gym?

Around 6:00pm, but the last six weeks before I fight I go training at 9:00pm.

What time do you finish at the gym?

[It's a] two-hour session.

What do you do after training?

I go to bed.

What do you have for your dinner?

I have proteins: salmon, steak, salad, water.

Do you have any hobbies or interests?

I love the movies, and just hanging out. also love going on vacation.

What time do you get to bed?


What is your favourite exercise?

I love running, and it is very important to me as a fighter.

How many days a week do you train?

Five days.

Before you won the world title, did you have a job?

Yes, I worked in a packaging warehouse.



WARM-UP/STRETCHING: 15 to 20 minutes.

SHADOWBOXING: 20 minutes (combination/technique).

HAND WRAPS ON – HEAVY BAG: two x three minutes.


SPARRING: build up to 12 rounds total.


WARM DOWN: five minutes.


WARMUP: 15 to 20 minutes.

SHADOWBOXING: 30 minutes (working on punches and angles, techniques and ideas).

SKIPPING: six minutes non-stop.

FOCUS PADS: 20 minutes non-stop.

SPEED BAG: two x three minutes (30-second breaks).

STRETCHING OUT: ten minutes.

MASSAGE: once per week; steam and sauna, cold plunge in pool.



Country: USA

Date of birth: 21 November 1968

Wins: 27 (19 KOs)

Losses: six



Since winning the Olympic bronze medal in the light heavyweight class of 1996, southpaw Antonio Tarver has blasted his way through the 175-pound division with speed, power and a never-say-die attitude that has made him 'the king of the rematches'.

In June 2000, he was beaten on points by the unbeaten Eric Harding; two years later he fought him again, this time beating Harding by a fifth-round technical KO.

After winning the vacant WBC and IBF Light Heavyweight titles vacated by Roy Jones Jnr. in 2003, by beating the experienced Montell Griffin, Tarver challenged the super-confident Jones Jnr. in Las Vegas but was beaten in a close fight. He still fought well enough to earn a rematch with the pound-for-pound champion.

I remember going to watch this fight while suffering from the flu. I really fancied Tarver to beat Jones this time, and nothing was going to stop me attending. Tarver hit the cocky Jones with a thunderous punch that put him down and out in the second round, to snatch his titles away from him and catapult himself into a life of fame, fortune and superstar status that he could previously only have imagined.

Tarver had come a long way since fighting in the small halls around Miami, Indiana and Philadelphia. Everyone wanted to know him now. There were commentary spots on HBO and celebrity golfing tournaments. Tarver was living his dream.

Next up for the 'Magic Man' was the 'Road Warrior', Glen Johnson. Johnson had experience and he could punch, but his greatest attribute was his brave heart. In their fight Tarver and Johnson went toe to toe, with the challenger winning by a split decision. Tarver's dream turned into a nightmare. What could he do now?

The same thing he always did when someone beat him – rematch! True to form, Tarver fought better next time around to win by unanimous decision.

Just over a year had passed since Tarver had knocked out Jones when it was announced that the two would meet again. (Why? I asked myself.)

In the fight, Jones was a shadow of his former self and Tarver had him out on his feet but didn't finish him off. He still won convincingly enough, beating him by unanimous decision and finally fulfilling his claim to be the best light heavyweight in the world.

In June 2006, Tarver defended his titles against Bernard Hopkins and lost unanimously over the championship distance. In the fight, it looked as though the magic had gone. After a year off, Tarver returned to fight tough guy Elvir Muriqi well enough to win the vacant IBO Light Heavyweight title once again.

In 2008 Tarver was back, with decent wins against Danny Santiago and Clinton Woods. All the talk was of fighting the unbeaten 'Bad' Chad Dawson. Dawson was a hungry, gifted fighter who was trained by Eddie Mustafa Muhammad at Johnny Tocco's gym in Vegas, and in his mind, Tarver was his ticket to ride.

In the fight, Dawson was tremendous while Tarver seemed to be stuck in second gear, losing by unanimous decision. Many thought that would be it but, as he'd done many times before, he came back for the rematch. Although Tarver fought better this time around, Dawson won once again.

At 41, maybe it's time to hang up the gloves and reflect on his tremendous career, enjoying the memory of his big fights and remarkable rematches.


What time do you get up in the morning to run?


Do you stretch before you run?


How far do you run?

I run three-five miles on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, and I concentrate on explosive sprinting on Tuesdays and Thursdays. (I also go swimming, once a week, to loosen up.)

After your roadwork, what do you do?

I stretch, then I relax.

What do you have for your breakfast?

Egg whites, oatmeal, fruit, water, and I take vitamins.

What time do you go to the gym?

12:00 midday. About two months before I fight, I concentrate on strength and conditioning. No boxing, just exercises.

What time do you leave the gym?


What do you do after training?

I love playing golf. I practice and practice. I like playing my PlayStation, and I love listening to music.

What do you have for your dinner?

Chicken, fish, brown rice and salads.

Do you have any interests or hobbies?

Golf, baseball and watching sports.

What time do you go to bed? 10:30pm.

What is your favourite exercise in the gym?

Focus pads.

How many days do you work out?

Six days. I go for a long run in the morning, then I go and play golf in the afternoon.

Before you won the world title, did you have a job?

Yes, I worked at Warehouse Home Depot.



STRETCHING: ten to 15 minutes.

SHADOWBOXING: two x three-minute rounds.

SPARRING: four to ten rounds, depending on stage of preparation.

FOCUS PADS: two x three-minute rounds.

SPEED BAG: three x three-minute rounds.



STRETCHING: ten-15 minutes. I would then wrap up my hands.

SHADOWBOXING: two x three-minute rounds.

HEAVY BAG: four-six x three-minute rounds.

FOCUS PADS: three x three-minute rounds.

FLOOR TO CEILING BAG: three x three-minute rounds.

SKIPPING: 15 minutes, non-stop.

SHADOWBOXING: three x three-minute rounds.


NOTE: Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays in training camp.

8:00PM AT NIGHT: extra session for strength and conditioning. Plyometrics, medicine ball/stomach work, dips, pushups and lots of stretching out. (No weights.)

MASSAGE: twice a week.



Country: Australia

Date of birth: 2 June 1955

Wins: 48 (15 KOs)

Losses: nine

Draws: three

Australian Lightweight Champion

Commonwealth Lightweight Champion

Australian Light Welterweight Champion

IBF Super Featherweight Champion of the World

Fighting out of Melbourne, Australia, Barry Michael was a working-class man that the people could look up to and admire. In a 14-year professional career he travelled the world, chasing a dream, fighting guys like Najib Daho, Lennox Blackmoore and Rocky Lockridge.

Michael wasn't a huge puncher but he wore his opponents down with his debilitating combination punching and a non-stop, in-your-face attacking style, which entertained fight fans every time he stepped through the ropes.

In his 60 fights, only two men would stop him: Lennox Blackmoore and Rocky Lockridge.

Blackmoore was a skilful boxer who carried his punching power right to the end of his fights. He stopped Michael in the seventh round of their non-title fight in 1978, and would later go on to challenge the legendary Light Welterweight World Champion Aaron Pryor for his WBA title in 1981, but was blasted out in two rounds by 'the Hawk'.

Rocky Lockridge was a devastating puncher who had beaten Roger Mayweather for the WBA Super Featherweight title in explosive style, knocking him out in the first round in 1984. He also took the great Julio Cesar Chavez the distance in 1986, and, earlier in his career, narrowly missed out on a split decision to the brilliantly talented WBA Featherweight Champion, Eusebio Pedroza, in 1980.

When Barry Michael faced the dynamite-fisted American in 1987, Lockridge was at his awesome best and stopped him in eight rounds, taking away the tough Australian's IBF Super Featherweight Championship belt.

This was the title that Michael had won from fellow Australian Lester Ellis in Melbourne, in 1985. Michael and Ellis fought out a gruelling 15-round battle at the legendary Festival Hall, with Michael dominating the final round to win on points and win the hearts and minds of Australian fight fans forever.


What time did you get up in the morning to run?


How far did you run?

Ten kilometres [eight miles] took me 48 minutes.

After running, what did you do?

Shower, then breakfast.

What did you have for breakfast?

1500-calories-a-day controlled diet: porridge, with skimmed milk, one piece of toast with vegemite, and one glass of orange juice. (No sugar or butter on the porridge.)

What did you do after breakfast?

Back to bed for a few hours sleep.

What time did you go to the gym?


What time did you finish your workout?

Between 6:00pm and 7:00pm. (I also taught the kids in the gym when I finished.)

What did you do after training?

I went home for my dinner.

What did you have for your dinner?

Fish, steamed veggies with lemon juice and rice.

Did you have any interests or hobbies?

I liked playing pool, I liked watching the fight tapes, and I also enjoyed reading.


Excerpted from Greatest Ever Boxing Workouts by Gary Todd. Copyright © 2013 Gary Todd. Excerpted by permission of John Blake Publishing Ltd.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Meet the Author

Gary Todd is the author of Workouts from Boxing's Greatest Champs.

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