Brian Ebersole (top) hopes to soar at UFC 133. | Photo: Jeff Sherwood
Decorated welterweight Brian Ebersole (www.brianebersole.com) will blog his experiences leading up to his UFC 133 clash with Dennis Hallman for Sherdog.com readers.
You know what? I really didn't give Hollywood, Calif., much of a chance, but I warmed up to it over the course of this last week.
Before arriving there, and coupled with my experiences in northern California, I assumed that Hollywood would be anything and everything but "normal." But I was well-surprised, as the neighborhoods were similar to what I'd see in Illinois' nicer suburbs. I thought that Hollywood would have busy streets, busy sidewalks, and really busy people, but to my surprise, it seemed like a pretty relaxed place and folks seemed a bit more down to earth, rather than the pretentious attitude that I expected.
Upon arrival, I headed to an apartment just off of Sunset Boulevard. Part of the reason I decided to take a few days in L.A. was the fact that I had two former teammates living in the area. I stayed with fellow MMA fighter, Andrew Montanez, who had lived with me for a short time in San Jose, where we'd trained at Frank Shamrock's academy.
I found the location to be quite ideal, being just across from Runyan Canyon -- a huge mountain that has been set aside as a running and hiking trail, and a great place to take the dog out for a wander. And with Fortune's Boxing Gym on the same street as Andrew's apartment, I had two ready-made training facilities within walking distance.
I lived a pretty simple life in Hollywood. I didn't use a car, I didn't venture out on any tourist activities, and I didn't see a single celebrity. But that's a good thing, being this close to fight: I simply slept, ate, and trained.
I was loving it, being able to do it all in the sunshine, as opposed to the Melbourne winter I'd just left behind.
I had a rough week as far as jetlag and such. Well, maybe rough isn't the right word; odd, different, confusing, challenging, and maybe slightly concerning could be better words to use. After not sleeping on a 14-hour flight and arriving at 10 a.m. into California, I napped for about two hours until 7 p.m., and then went through the night til midnight or later.
The next day was fairly normal, being a Sunday. I worked out one time and rested the remainder of the day. However, I didn't sleep that night. I stayed up through the night, and ended up leaving the apartment for a 6 a.m. workout on the Monday morning. This occurred two more times during the week, where I saw 4 a.m. on the clock and decided that it would be best to stay awake until the daybreak and get in a training session.
Needless to say, I didn't wake up Andrew for these sessions, and he returned the favor by not waking me for the 1 p.m. session, as I was crashed out in the spare room.
I'm hoping to be done with the all-nighters. They're lonely, and it's a bit scary not knowing where my energy levels are going to be. When will I want to sleep? Will I be getting enough sleep, if I'm sleeping at odd hours? And will there be a day in the near future where I'll crash for an entire day? And crashing for an entire day could cause an issue, as I have a few days with my family coming up.
How terrible will that be if I sleep through an entire Sunday with my family, especially when they haven't seen me for nearly a year? Probably half-unforgivable. And it'll be no better crashing in Philly, when the UFC expects me to be available and energetic enough to go through the media engagements that they have scheduled.
I've just arrived in Chicago; I can't wait to hit a pillow tonight. I am looking forward to the Strikeforce fights and the rare opportunity to be a fan at a show. I'm also hoping I can get to bed before 2 a.m.. After a late card, the adrenaline will surely course though my veins after watching such an electric event. I'll then have a hometown visit, for two days, before heading to Philly.
Off to bed, or I'll end up on this computer all night -- again. Can't be having that; it's crunch time.