#4 She started fighting at 19 years old
This March will mark Nunes’ 11th year in professional MMA, so you’d be forgiven for thinking that the UFC champion is probably coming towards the end of her active career and is probably in her late 30’s. That’s not the case at all though – Nunes doesn’t turn 31 until May, and one reason for her longevity is that she started fighting at the age of 19.
Even more incredibly, ‘The Lioness’ wasn’t even involved in combat sports until she turned 16 years old and began boxing. At 17 she began training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and less than two years later she was making her professional MMA debut – a loss to the now unheralded Ana Maria India.
To turn professional so quickly is almost unheard of in the world of MMA, and speaks volumes about the skill and talent that Nunes clearly possesses. And despite her reputation as a striker, she now holds a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt under the respected Daniel Valverde – an achievement she reached in late 2013 alongside fellow UFC fighter Ricardo Lamas.Published 03 Jan 2019, 03:52 IST