Miesha Tate recalls her first MMA bout and when she realized she was a fighter

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When Miesha Tate steps into the cage on March 3 to defend her Strikeforce title against Ronda Rousey it will mark her 15th professional MMA bout. Tate is brimming with confidence heading into her first title defense, with that confidence being something she gained very early in her career.

Tate recently revealed when she discovered that she was a true fighter, the moment of clarity coming as she was beaten bloody in her first amateur MMA bout. Fighting with a badly broken nose, with her blood pooling below her Tate realized that she was no longer a wrestler, “I thought to myself, ‘Well, this is the route you chose, Tate – now you’ve got to get your ass off the floor and deal with it’. I finally realized what I was there to do, and accepted the harsh truth – this wasn’t a wrestling match… it was a fight!

Without a second thought, I tried everything in my power to get out of a potential submission and start kicking her ass again. I bucked her off like crazy, she slipped into the guard position and that allowed me to get up on my tip toes and wail away with punches as hard as I possibly could. Blood was going everywhere. It was all over my face and her gloves. I didn’t care anymore.

Now fully amped and excited, I walked back to my corner at the end of the round with a spring in my step, eager for the next round to hurry up. I now understood what I was there to do and realized what being a fighter was all about. I wanted more of it. Unfortunately, it was at this very moment that my trainers looked at me with disgust, in a way that suggested my nose and face were beyond repair and that I had no chance whatsoever of going another round.

Tate ended up losing the battle, but as the gold she wears around her waist will attest, she won the war.

Further Reading: Photos: Miesha Tate trains hard in preparation for Ronda Rousey