Hi Mike,

Here are the interview questions for Like2Fight.com

1/Hi Mike, thanks for the interview – could you start by telling us a little about yourself?

I am from the Stockport/South Manchester area. Happily married, with 2 girls, just your ordinary guy by day really, other than I ride a big superbike and have worked on the doors in the city centre for a few years and am a 53 year old MMA fighter (you can start to see I am not the average guy already lol)

In my school days I was always a natural athlete playing football for the school, doing Judo, representing Cheshire at the discus and as far back as I can remember able to weight lift my own body weight above my head, still to this day.

At present I am 5’6″ tall, 30″ waist, 38″ chest and weigh 65 kgs. At my peak of unfitness a couple of years ago I was up to 76 kgs and waist 33″, so not really totally out of it but ‘on the slippery slope’.  I have always gone to the ‘normal’ gym though.

I think my competitive nature comes from something that happened to me when I was a few days old, and in the back of my mind I have to prove I am as good as anybody else. I know this because I found this thing out when I was about 10 years old, and that’s when I started trying to do anything physical: better or as good as anyone else.

2/What got you into training MMA 18 months ago?

That’s a very good question. I stumbled across MMA really like many I suppose.  After all you don’t start going to school as a kid and think, I want to do this or that, things just happen. I saw some MMA on a sports channel and thought I have a reasonable level of fitness and can still remember my Judo, so if I learned the boxing, maybe I could give the training a go.  I do remember starting out and realising I had to up my game in all departments.  You don’t realise how unprepared you are until you try something.  To be honest I didn’t realise how little of a clue I had and what to expect. On the basis of you only know what you know, so you don’t know how little of that it is of the full picture. Things do slot together pretty quickly though with a trainer like Matt who once fought Dan Hardy.

3/What age do your competitors tend to be?  Is this an issue for you at all?

As you can expect nearly everyone I have come up against has been a twenty something. This is great for me as it’s easy to stand out and be remembered. Photographers and promoters who go around shows always remember me, as I am something different, being the oldest active fighter in the country. I suppose I am a bit like the elephant man, the curiosity factor does sell tickets. When you can keep up with all the twenty somethings in the gym and some can’t keep up with you then age is just a number.

I do hope the recent uproar on the very young fighting does not extend to the mature fighting but I don’t think so. A couple of months ago I was approached by a film company that makes documentaries for channels 4 and 5, one of those true life things, but it all fell through as my wife did not want to be involved at all.

4/Why have you been fighting every other month?  That has got to be extremely demanding on your body, regardless of your age.

Why have I been fighting every other month, why not? I haven’t found fighting every other month a problem at all. I try to be at fighting fitness levels at all times. Strangely enough my fittest time is over the Christmas period, when I have more time off my job to train. I am a phenomenally fast healer also. I didn’t realise this until I got a big cut down the side of my head on a show and turned up two weeks later to fight on another show and a guy recognised me from two weeks earlier and said “I thought it was you from the other week but can’t be as you had a bad cut and it’s all gone!”

5/How far are you hoping to take your competing in MMA?  Have you got your eye on a title one day?

Strange as it may seem, I have absolutely no aspirations whatsoever. I know that sounds bizarre, but keeping it real, I am never going to get on UFC unless they have a veterans, over 40’s section one day. I do MMA at the level I am at, and love doing that, so does it really matter that I am never going to be a full time employed fighter?  It’s about enjoying what you do really, the worst that can happen is that you come second!  I think I feel robbed that MMA didn’t exist when I was a twenty something and all I had was Judo, so I am making up for lost time.

6/What does your typical weeks training consist of?

Monday would be a 1 1/2 hour training session at 12 Gauge MMA gym.

Tuesday night would be a 1 1/2 hour session at Streets Boxing Gym.

Wednesday would be an hour at/near home doing running, cycling and skipping.

Thursday I would go down the “normal” fitness gym.

Friday and Saturdays off training due to domestic pressure!!!

Sunday would be an hour at/near home running, cycling and skipping. “Ask not what the man drives but what drives the man”. I am honestly not sure about the running, if it’s that good for you, all that pounding of the joints. I know traditionally boxers have done this but how much running do you do in a cage? Think I will up the skipping which I love and reduce the running a bit.

I do consider part of my training as being my diet though. I don’t smoke obviously, and don’t drink. I watch what I eat (definitely nothing sweet), how much and also when I eat. I have been surprised that the couple of health/protein companies I have contacted have not shown any interest in sponsoring me though.

I do thank Unilver for allowing me to use my nickname:-    Mike “small and mighty” Persil.

It’s not everyone who gets their name mentioned on national television most evenings LOL

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