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Belal Muhammad training for UFC debut against Alan Jouban during Ramadan

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First-time Octagon jitters are tough to deal with. Imagine going into your first UFC fight after fasting during the day, every day over the last month.

Belal Muhammad has a lot on his plate over the next few days. Not literally, though. He hasn’t eaten or taken a drink of water between sun up and sun down since early June. The UFC newcomer is a practicing Muslim and Ramadan this year fell between June 5 and July 5 — essentially the duration of his training camp for Alan Jouban.

“It’s one of those where you have to be really mentally strong to do it,” Muhammad told MMA Fighting. “I train with a lot of Muslim guys that do it and a lot of guys have to sit out the whole month because they can’t train at all during it. So it’s just one of those where you gotta just tough it out. I know if I can get through this month, the fight is going to be super easy for me because I’m going through training with no water, no food or anything like that and I’m still pushing hard. My body got used to it by now. I became acclimated after like the first week. You never know how strong your body is until you push it to the limit.”

Muhammad (9-0) meets Jouban at UFC Fight Night: dos Anjos vs. Alvarez on July 7 in Las Vegas. That’s something of a stroke of luck. Muhammad will be able to weigh-in July 6 and rehydrate immediately after stepping on the scale in the morning, because Ramadan will be over by then.

Contrary to what some would believe, Muhammad said fasting during the day doesn’t necessarily help a weight cut. He said in the past he had a tendency to gain weight ….View full article

Source:: mma fighting