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Cynthia Calvillo Used Her Suspension to Improve Her Mental Game

November 16, 2018 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
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Cynthia Calvillo spoke with MMAjunkie ahead of her fight with Poliana Botelho at UFC Fight Night 140 about coming back from a suspension for marijuana and more.

On looking forward to her return: “I am extremely excited. I cannot wait to showcase my skills. I’ve been training really hard, and I am looking forward to make the whole Latin community proud. I trained very hard, and I take this very seriously. I worked on all the aspects of the MMA game – the ground game and the wrestling, as well.”

On getting things worked out during her suspension: “For sure. Last year I was just in a fight-by-fight mentality, I was taking fight by fight and never really had time to settle in. My body still felt good, but I think this (suspension) helped my body mentally and physically. I allowed myself to sit back. Your mind needs a break from being at (training) camp non-stop. It was good to have that, and it was good to just train and enjoy, just work on all my tools. And I feel like I am definitely way better as a fighter than I was last year. I am excited to be back.”

On her mentality: “For me, this is a lifestyle. The work never stops. This is my job. So even though I didn’t have a fight scheduled I was always at ‘the office,’ on the mats. I was training on mitts and on the mats harder than most people do when they’re in camp, in in my offseason. For me, there’s no such thing as an offseason. My only holiday is the day of the fight, and that’s it.”

On what she worked on during her time off: “I would say my mental aspect, and my athleticism. Every fighter, when you start, you think that (training) is never enough, so just as working hard is important, your recovery is important, mentally and physically. And I think that was a part of my game. Last year I was a new girl in the UFC, but now I feel like I am more mature and experienced. So yeah, I think I am a better fighter, mentally and physically.”

On Botelho: “I know she likes to strike, she’s heavy-handed. She’s 7-1, got six knockouts. She is a dangerous Brazilian, and she loves to fight. I expect the best from her, and that excites me and motivates me to train harder. So I am expecting her to bring it and just moving forward, and I am ready for it all.”