During this conversation with our friends at Fight Hub TV, former heavyweight champion Andy Ruiz Jr discusses the changes he’s made in his life to get to this point, heading into his upcoming clash against Chris Arreola. While Ruiz was catching up with Marcos Villegas, he discusses his noticeable weight loss and how he’s feeling now training with Team Canelo. Check out some excerpts from the interview below.
Ruiz on how he feels fighting at a much lower weight than we last saw him
“It feels good. You know, I have the ability that I never thought that I had. I can bob and weave, I can duck more, I can slip the punches. The speed I always had, you know, but the ability that they’re showing me and they’re teaching me stuff that I couldn’t do before. It feels amazing.
How to Watch Ruiz vs Arreola
“I feel like sometimes I love like Mike Tyson, you know...I had to get my legs strong for me to move like that. I never knew that I could box around, I could slip the punches, and in sparring I’ve been sparring people that I was already sparring before and they’re like ‘man, you’re different, you’re more busy, like it’s hard to hit you’ and it’s because of the hard work and dedication. It wasn’t just me, it was Eddy and Canelo showing me so much stuff.”
On if he wants to lose more weight or stay around the 255lb mark
“I’m at 257 but I’m not where I want to be at. I’m way better than I was before but I want to be at like 235lbs, 235-240lbs, but strong, be lean. For me to be there I gotta stay consistent and I gotta stay disciplined, I gotta keep working hard. And before I used to train when I had a fight coming so Canelo’s been telling me I have to be training even when I don’t have a fight...I just gotta stay busy and focus on what they’ve been telling me.”
On if the training or the diet has gotten him to lose weight
“It’s 50/50, bro. It’s 50/50 but having the weight loss I’ve been feeling so much better and I have the ability to do more stuff, I can last more rounds, I could throw more punches — I could do so many more things...”
On being more motivated at this point in his career
“At this moment, when I was champion of the world, I was really happy and I got caught up in the lifestyle and I regret that to this day. I still have that part in me that I regret it and I let so many people down. And then when I lost it I was depressed, I was mad, I was angry at myself and I ended up (weighing up to) 310lbs. I was so sad and I got tired of the way that I was living...I remember this one day I just got on my knees and I started praying and I was telling God, ‘Please God, help me. Help me make a change, I don’t want to be the same person that I am right now. I want to be a better person, a better father, a better son, a better fighter as well.’
And what do you know, the next day I end up feeling like all the addictions that I had went away. Everything went away. It was amazing, man...That day I was thinking so clear and I was like ‘you know what, I’m gonna message Canelo’ and I didn’t think he was gonna answer because I thought he was disappointed in me too...So I messaged him like ‘do you think you could open the doors for me, I’m tried of the way that I’m living, tired of the stuff that I’m doing’ and he was like ‘alright.’ He messaged me and I was like ‘whoa, what the heck.’
“The first thing that Eddy told me was ‘look Andy, we know what you got, we know that you got potential but if you’re gonna come over here I need you to be disciplined, I need you to give me 110%, I need you to work your ass off’ and I told him ‘you know what Eddy, I’ll do whatever it is, I’ll do whatever it takes’ and what do you know, I started training hard, I started doing the things that he wanted me to do and what do you know, we’re here now.”
On what he thinks would’ve happened if he showed up for the Joshua rematch in this kind of shape
“I would’ve still been champion. I would’ve still been champion, man. And that’s what I said, it still haunts me to this day in my heart and I know exactly what to do and what not to do now because I went all 12 rounds.”