‘Another type of human’: Inside Cyborg’s excruciating weight cut

Posted by on Aug 11, 2016 in Voice-Over | 0 comments

For years, Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino has been considered one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in women’s MMA.

The only argument against her lofty ranking was that she normally fights as a 145-pound featherweight, a division that doesn’t exist in UFC. The promotion’s top female weight class is for 135-pound bantamweights, such as Ronda Rousey.

A trailer for a new documentary about Cyborg’s 140-pound catchweight beat-down of Leslie Smith at UFC 198 shows just how hard it is for her to cut weight.

In the trailer, Justino is seen running on a treadmill in a plastic sauna suit and beanie, desperately trying to lose water weight before the match.

Then the camera cuts to a scene of Cyborg lying on the ground in agony. With tears running down her face, she seems to be in the midst of an emotional meltdown as her coaches fan her with towels and rub her legs to get her circulation going.

“Chris is another type of human being,” the trailer’s voiceover intones. “Yeah, she’s a woman, but she’s not an average woman.”

“Not average” is putting it kindly. Cyborg was caught using anabolic steroids in 2012, and her archenemy Rousey won’t let her forget it, casting aspersions on Cyborg’s natural size.

“I fight in the UFC, in the 135-pound division,” Rousey told ESPN in 2015. “She can fight at 145 pumped full of steroids, or she can make the weight just like everybody else without them.”

Given how hard it was for Justino to make the cut to 140 pounds, it is hard to imagine she could cut an additional five pounds in order to fight Rousey, though that’s the dream scenario for the UFC.

“The Cyborg thing is complicated because everybody is ready to go,” UFC president Dana White said in 2015. “I’m ready for Cyborg. Ronda is ready for Cyborg. Everybody is ready for that fight, but Cyborg has to make the weight.”

Justino will have another chance to prove she can safely cut down to 140 pounds when she takes on Lina Lansberg at UFC Fight Night 95 in September.

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