By Shama Ko, Contributing Writer
Audrey Alvarez’s fighting spirit keeps her motivated despite the setbacks she’s had in returning to the cage.
Audrey Alvarez was set to fight Andrea Lee at the Ascend Combat Mayhem 2 in Shreveport, La., but due to last minute changes, she was dropped from the card at the May 19event. This is a reoccurring problem Alvarez says she has had to face throughout her career as a MMA fighter. Over the past year Alvarez says she has been scheduled to fight eight times, all of which fell through.
Last month, Alvarez caught her first break in a year at the ABG Promotions Rugged Saints amateur MMA fights and returned victoriously to the cage. Her fight against Loretta Foreman not only proved that Alvarez has talent and dedication as a MMA fighter, but that she has a relentless fighting spirit.
Alvarez is a natural fighter in all capacities. Not only is she an aspiring MMA fighter, Alvarez also works as a fire fighter for NAS Kingsville. She has four years of training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and kickboxing. Her amateur MMA record is 2-0. A blue-belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Alvarez trains at Paragon/Full contact Fight Academy Corpus Christi TX.
How does Alvarez keep a balanced in life as an aspiring MMA fighter and also keep moving forward after setbacks? Read on to find out.
Interview – Audrey Alvarez (Paragon BJJ / FCFA)
You were scheduled to fight for Ascend Combat at Mayhem 2 in Shreveport, Louisiana this past weekend and then were dropped from the card last minute. What happened?
There seems to be confusion on this particular change. I found out about the change a day before weigh-ins. I was originally scheduled to fight Andrea Lee (1-1) at 125lbs. when I received the call/text informing me that they needed a 125er to fill in and fight Kristi Kester (2-1) for the first ever 125lb Ascend Combat Belt.
I said “yes…I need to fight! I’ll fight Kester or Andrea…”
Supposedly it was left up to Kesters corner/trainer’s to decide on who they wanted as Kester’s opponent. It was between me and Andrea. Obviously I was not the chosen one. I’m sorry but in my opinion a title shot should be held based on the fighter’s record. Not taking anything away from Andrea Lee’s performance. I’m just stating my opinion.
I still took the 8 plus hour trip to LA to watch the fight, it was a GREAT fight for the belt.
You had a year gap between your last victory against Amber Stautzenberger and your recent win at the ABG Promotions Rugged Saints fights in Killeen against Loretta Foreman. Why such a long gap?
It wasn’t an intentional gap, I booking fights the whole year, but all eight booked prior to Loretta Foreman fell through. Women backed out for several reason. Two or three of them had injuries, one got pregnant, another had a conflict with school, and one said I was too experienced with a record of (1-0) or a promoter couldn’t find me an opponent. It’s been like a rollercoaster, training hard and then not fighting.
Getting ready to fight and not fighting can be extremely discouraging. What motivates you to keep going?
Well it’s hard. My motivation is slowly slipping away, but I love the sport and I’m very active. I’m always in some kind of shape. I’m mentally strong and that’s what carries me through the physical challenges.
I entered the fight scene thinking that with hard work, dedication and “skill” I would prove myself as a fighter and then the fights would come. But what I’ve realized is that marketing yourself (photo shoots, twitter, Facebook) plays a big role too.
Being a Fire Fighter is an extremely demanding job. How do you balance a work and training schedule?
My schedule is very hectic. There are never enough hours in a day. I work 24 hours on and 24 hours off; the days I am at work I have full access to a gym allowing me to do my strength and conditioning. My days at home I train technique, spar and do mitt work with my teammates.
When you’re at work you said you do strength training and conditioning. On your off days you train and spar. What else do you do to supplement your training for MMA fights?
Well, since I work so much I try to utilize my alone time with mediation, stretching, and shadow boxing for form and technique.
What’s in store for Audrey Alvarez next? Where would you like to take your MMA career?
I really want to get more amateur experience in the cage, hopefully get the opportunity to fight for a belt.I’d also like to fight some of the big names in the 125 weight class (PRO) and prove that I am in this sport to FIGHT!
About the Author
Shama Ko has actively been a part of and contributed to the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu community in Texas for close to a decade. She is a Gracie Jiu-Jitsu purple belt at Gracie Humaitá Austin, a champion competitor, a photographer/owner of Mean Streak Photography, a community/event organizer for Girls in Gis and Austin Women’s Open Mat, and most recently a contributing writer to TXMMA. Follow Shama’s endeavors online through any of the links above or through any of these sites: Twitter, Facebook, The Adventures of Shama Ko, ShamaKo.com, and SKOphoto.com.