Myles Jury was one of the best in the world at lightweight. He thinks he'll be even better at featherweight.
Jury recently announced his plans to move a division down after he cleaned up his diet. Already, he has noticed a significant difference. In his featherweight debut, Jury will take on Charles Oliveira at UFC on FOX 17 on Dec. 19 in Orlando.
"I was hell on wheels at 155," Jury told MMA Fighting. "At , nobody is gonna beat me. I just want to get this first fight, get the cut down and go through that process. After that, I'll be able to take on anybody."
Maybe that was a blessing, because in recent weeks Jury has adjusted his lifestyle. He found out his body-fat percentage was 16 percent, a number closer to an in-shape adult male than an elite-level professional athlete. After that, Jury made changes, cutting bad foods out of his diet and focusing on getting leaner.
Once he did that, the pounds started to come off. He was already under 170 pounds before training camp. The 26-year-old is focusing on coming in at around 6 to 10 percent body fat and his best weight for that on weigh-in day would likely be 145.
"I'm training hard and I'm eating good," Jury said. "What am I gonna do? I'm not a B.J. Penn. I'm not a world champion yet trying to fight up a weight class. I should be in the lowest weight class and have the advantage of being a bigger guy."
Jury said the progress is already visible. He has more muscle definition and just feels better overall. With a change of gyms, from Alliance in California to Power MMA in Arizona, Jury is confident and flying high right now.
"You look good, you feel good," Jury said. "I feel better about everything."
The Hazel Park, Mich., native is still ranked No. 8 among UFC lightweight contenders. He plans on being right up there among featherweights soon enough.
"I feel like I'm adding just another advantage to my overall game," Jury said. "I feel like when you're fighting the top-five guys in the world and you're going for a world title -- that's still my main goal, that hasn't changed, that's what I'm here for -- if I get another advantage going into war on my side, that just increases my odds of winning. And that's what I want to do. I feel really good about the decision."