UFC veteran Uriah Hall has revealed how he pushed himself to the brink of death in order to cut weight for his fight against Vitor Belfor.
Hall was due to face Belfor this past January, but the fight was canceled after Hall fainted on his way to the weigh-in.
And Hall has now shared the story of what happened prior to his collapse, and how he ended up in hospital having caused himself to have an acute kidney failure as he battled to cut his weight to 185.
“I cut the weight, and I cut the weight so far where I got to.. I think I was 187,” Hall told ESPN. “And then I was like ‘alright, I don’t know if I can go any more.’ And I was going to pay that penalty, which is like 20 percent of your purse. But I’m so disciplined that I’m like, ‘you know, I’ve never missed weight… I’m going to do it.’
“I end up being 185.6, which, I made weight. And I remember just feeling ‘alright, let me just make it downstairs to the scale.’ I was walking to the elevator, boom, just like that I collapsed. I was in and out of it, I woke up, people were over me.
“I woke up in the hospital and I was screaming for water. I was like ‘give me water, give me water!’ They’re like ‘we can’t give you water yet, we’ve got to,’ whatever they have to do. And I was just like ‘give me [expletive] water!’ … I’ve never felt so thirsty in my life.”
Hall said reflecting on the incident made him realise that in that moment he was ‘willing to die’ in order to make the weight.
“Throughout the whole experience, what I really think I did was I pushed my body so far that I was literally willing to die. I pushed myself to the brink of almost death. It was scary,” he said.
“I’ve done it so much and I just thought ‘ah, this is just minor. I’m sure I’m really deprived but I’m sure I’ll bounce back right away,’ because you get some water in you and your body’s back to normal. So that’s how I was looking at it… but my body was just saying ‘nope.’ And I think my kidney was so deprived. I didn’t realize how important your kidney was. This was a lesson, because your kidney basically flushes everything out, and my kidney was like ‘where’s all the stuff to flush?’ It pretty much had an acute failure, which is pretty much right next to shutting down.”
UFC’s Dana White was critical of Hall after the incident, saying that he doesn’t cut weight properly.
“He doesn’t take his training serious, he doesn’t do what anybody tells him,” White told MMA Junkie. “He does his own thing. A week before the fight, he went to L.A. and was hanging out in L.A. in clubs and stuff. So, not good…. If you don’t cut weight the right way and you don’t do what you’re supposed to do, this is what happens.”