For many of the soldiers of the US Armed Forces they aren’t sure what they are coming home to once their time is up. Some of them have jobs to come home to while others struggle to readjust to life away from the battlefield. Then there are the veterans who have chosen to restart their MMA careers. Guys like Brian Stann, Tim Kennedy, John Walsh, and George Lockhart.
The “Band of Brothers” has formed a very tight bond and they always look out for one another. Stann and Kennedy are two of the bigger names in the sport and have helped guys like Walsh and Lockhart with their training, sponsorship and overall support. It’s camaraderie like that which makes these soldiers so special. They look out for one another and would do anything to help the others succeed.
Lockhart is ready to resume his MMA career and will start tonight in Salt Lake City, Utah. On top of aiming to get his game back on track, he has also helped other fighters as they’ve looked to drop down a weight-class. In fact, he did such a good job helping Stann move to middleweight he found himself in high demand. Now he’s not only about to begin a new business venture, he’s back where he loves to be; in the middle of a fight.
“I’m fighting for Showdown Fights against Jerome Hatch who is like a journeyman,” said Lockhart in an exclusive interview with MMATraining. He’s 18-10 and fought and beat some decent guys during his career. He’s a powerful striker, but he’s not very tight with his striking and his ground game isn’t all that great either.”
Lockhart hasn’t been in a fight since losing a Uunanimous Decision to Cortez Coleman for the Sin City Fight Club promotion in November of 2009. He has an overall record of 9-4 and up until that point had fought pretty regularly since 2006. His biggest fight saw him lose a Split Decision to Shonie Carter in February of 2009. With so much time off between fights one has to wonder if ring rust will set in.
“I’ve been training with some of the best fighters in the world,” Lockhart explained of the possibility. “I’m training with Stann, Douglas, and Dhiego Lima; we’re all together at Warrior’s Legion. Ring rust happens when you don’t train, when you’re not in the ring. I’m in the ring every damn day grinding. I feel totally confident in my game. I’m a lead instructor at the gym so that also helps me stay sharp.”
Lockhart spent a great deal of time over in Iraq and after his tours of duty were done the Marines brought him to Quantico, Virginia to help train the next generation of soldiers in MMA. While he was part of the military Lockhart was forced to pass up on what could have been an opportunity of a lifetime on three separate occasions.
“I joined the military when I was eighteen and was part of a radio recon unit for my first six years,” Lockhart said proudly. “I did two tours in Iraq and when I was there I ran into a couple of individuals who worked at the Martial Arts Center of Excellence for the Marine Corps. From there I was invited to teach the Marines MMA at the Quantico base. The reason I got out was because I had a son. While I was there I was invited to be part of The Ultimate Fighter three times, but the Marines Corps denied me all three times. I figured if I was going to give MMA a shot I better do it now.”
On top of being a soldier and a Mixed Martial Artist Lockhart is also a very well respected performance nutrition counselor. He has helped many of today’s top fighters go about dropping weight the right way. Because he is so good at what he does he was forced to turn down many opportunities. Now he is about to launch a new business along with Lloyd Irvin.
“I knew I wanted to start a business when I got out of the military,” offered Lockhart on the subject. “I got three kids and a wife to take care so I started a nutrition company. I’ve helped Stann drop from 205 to 185, Kenny Florian from 155 to 145. I’ve worked with Dustin Poirier, Rashad Evans, Jon Jones, and Rory MacDonald. Within one year’s time it kind of exploded and everyone realized how easy it was to use and how good the results were.
I was working strictly by word of mouth and I was forced to turn away a lot of people. I partnered up with a company called Fitness VT and they designed a program that is virtual that has all of the things I was doing with these fighters. It takes everything into account, your weight, body type, sleep and your goals. I can work with thousands of people and we’re almost ready to launch. Lloyd is in charge of the marketing and Spencer Caldwell is my partner. Our website is partially up at www.fitnessvt.com; there you can read some testimonials.”
It’s common to be grateful for the service our great men and women of the United States military perform on a daily basis. They risk their lives and spend precious time in a foreign land fighting for what they believe in. Lockhart is also grateful for those that have helped him and he is not afraid to show his gratitude.
“I have to thank Ranger Up,” said a humble Lockhart. “They sponsored me on a whim; they have hooked me up with more than they should have. They are always looking out for the military. I would also like to thank the guys at Warrior’s Legion they are so awesome. My family has always been so supportive of me. My wife Heather and my three kids are my life. Anyone who knows me understands that I am very religious and I want to thank the Man upstairs. He’s given me my family and everything else I have.”
To follow George Lockhart he can be found on Twitter @lockloaded.