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Stay-fit secrets from a boxer


 
 
Women’s boxing will be making its Olympic debut in the 2012 Games, and Marlen Esparza, 22, has a fighting chance to make the squad. Here’s more about the heavy-hitting lightweight.

She’s a comeback kid. Marlen got in the ring at age 11, which made her more disciplined—and offered an outlet for her extra energy. “Boxing is good for girls who are competitive and feisty,” she says.
  
She’s ready for London. “I’m working out a lot more now,” she says. “Instead of three hours a day, I’m now training about six.” Marlen’s also had to pack on some pounds for the sport since her usual 106-pound weight class won’t be in the games. But that doesn’t mean she scarfs junk food. “I eat granola, yogurt, bananas and mixed nuts,” she shares.  

She’s got her heart in it. Boxing is clearly more than just a sport for Marlen. “I love how it feels when you’re in the ring, put in a bad situation and have to figure out how to get out of it,” she tells us.
 
She’s ready to win. “My favorite part about boxing is the second when they raise your hands after a win,” says Marlen. We’re hoping her next “W” comes with gold!
 
Photo Credit: Karen Warren
 
 

BY GL ON 9/29/2011 1:00:00 PM

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