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Morning Report: Mike Dolce sticking to gameplan with Vitor Belfort post-TRT, says Chael Sonnen is 'hoping to regain the trust and respect of the public'

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

The confidant to many a UFC athlete, famed nutritionist Mike Dolce chalks much of the work he does with fighters as simply 'reacting to the body.'

With the UFC's ban of testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) in February, a few of Dolce's clients were the most directly affected by the policy.

No. 1 contender Vitor Belfort withdrew from a title bout with middleweight champion Chris Weidman at UFC 173 in May, citing the time constraints of allowing himself to adjust to the rule.

Set to compete without a sanctioned testosterone use exemption (TUE) for the first time since he challenged Anderson Silva for the middleweight title in 2011, Belfort apparently isn't showing any ill effects without TRT.

"[Belfort's] doing brilliantly right now," Dolce told The Underground. "He's ready. He could fight within four weeks if he had to."

Briefly booked against Chael Sonnen at UFC 175 in July, Belfort was then expected to challenge Weidman at UFC 181 on Dec. 6, but the bout was pushed to 2015 after the champion suffered a broken hand.

Describing the process as less intensive than working with his diabetic athletes using Insulin, Dolce says his preparation for Belfort hasn't been altered much post-TRT.

"This is a man who makes sacrifices to be at his very best," Dolce said of Belfort. "I love the fact that he's off the TRT program just to get that out of his conversation, but the diet, the meal plan, it doesn't change that much.

"Every three weeks we update our meal plan because the body changes so we have to react to the body. It's just a matter of constantly reacting to the body, monitoring his blood work, monitoring his health, monitoring training output. Making sure we really balance the volume and the intensity. Give him enough rest and recuperation, which is probably the most important thing. Not so much the nutrition, but it's the rest and recuperation for the athletes that are transitioning off [TRT]."

While Belfort looks to forge ahead without TRT, another of Dolce's clients opted for retirement. After failing a pair of random drug tests administered by the Nevada Athletic Commission prior to UFC 175, Sonnen would retire from the sport before receiving a two-year ban from the NAC.

Although Sonnen only just recently stated that he never intends on apologizing for the failed tests, Dolce says his friend of over a decade intends on being a positive force in the sport.

"What Chael's hoping for is to regain the trust and the respect of the public," said Dolce. "He's not concerned about his paycheck. He's a hard-working guy. He's capable.

"What he wants to do is be a part of the industry that he loves and that he helped build to a large degree. He's been a focal point in this industry for the last five years. He just wants to get back and contribute something. I know in his heart, he's such a good guy. That'll shine through. He has to pay his penance, but I think in some way, shape or form that Chael's going to contribute in a very positive manner to the sport and to the world."

In addition to recently developing his own podcast, Sonnen served as a commentator for a Battle Grounds MMA Pay-Per-View event held in Tulsa, Oklahoma on Oct. 3.



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A video posted by Erik Fontanez (@erik_fontanez) on


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Today's Fanpost of the Day comes via Michael Shulski.

Poll: a History of Martial Arts?

In recent podcasts, Joe Rogan has discussed the history of martial arts with guests. Rogan keeps asserting that the martial arts have evolved more over the past 100 years than they have in the entirety of human history prior. How true is this assertion? In terms of unarmed martial arts, the premise holds up. In terms of 'traditional martial arts', however, this contention is questionable.

Yes, some people equate 'traditional martial arts' as synonymous with eastern martial arts. This is misleading. Boxing and wrestling were firmly entrenched in western cultures hundreds of years before asian martial arts became popular in movies and tv. 'Traditional martial arts' are just ways that humanity has waged wars and devised methods for self-defense. Viewing martial arts historically, rather than just culturally, economically, and socially, paints a broad picture.


Check out the rest of the post here.


Found something you'd like to see in the Morning Report? Just hit me up on Twitter @SaintMMA and we'll include it in tomorrow's column.

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