Poor cardio was a major factor in Maurico “Shogun” Rua’s loss to Forrest Griffin back in 2007. As Shogun’s new strength and conditioning coach, Todd Norman, explained to MMAPrime’s Aaron Tru, however, it shouldn’t be a problem this time. Transcription via MMA Mania:

“The thing I do first and foremost with these guys is work on core strength and stability.A lot of the movements that they have to get out of or get into require rotational strength and power so core is kind of the foundation of what I do with these guys. Then we get into all the athletic develop training like foot speed, agility and reaction which is something a lot of these guys haven’t had. They’ve done a lot of striking and kicking and their MMA techniques but when it comes to pure athleticism and coordination, I try to get that foundation underneath them first. Once we’ve built the foundation for the athlete, then we tailor to more fight-specific training from a strength and conditioning standpoint. With Shogun right now, we’re getting to that phase where we are working on more cardio and conditioning to make it more fight-specific. By the time he gets to the fight, hopefully the conditioning aspect won’t be an issue.”

“When I’m training someone for a fight or whatever it is, it’s 100%, ‘You’re gonna win and you’re gonna dominate.’ That’s the way it is. The mind-set can’t be any other way. I think the athlete or the fighter have got to believe in themself and I think whoever is working with them has got to be 100% believing in them. That’s the way I am. To me, 100% ‘Shogun’ is gonna rip him up, tear him apart.”

Check out Shogun’s training routine with Norman below.