“Iron” Mike Tyson appears to be demonstrating some cast iron will as relates to his upcoming boxing match with Jake Paul. The heavyweight legend says that he is so serious about beating his significantly younger opponent that he is giving up two of his favorite pastimes in the run up to the big showdown. M&F breaks it all down.

Mike Tyson, 57, will step into the squared circle with Jake Paul, 27, in a live Netflix showdown on July 20, and while both men have been talking up the fight on social media, Tyson, who will actually be 58 by the time the match happens, has given his clearest indication yet that he sees the opportunity as more than just a huge payday. In a recent interview with Forbes, Tyson said, “Six weeks I haven’t gotten high or had sex.” Explaining his abstinence, the boxing icon continued; “Discipline. You know discipline, doing what you love to do, what you love to do, doing what you hate to do but doing it like you love it.”

Why Do Boxers Abstain From Sex Before a Fight?

“Women weaken knees,” is the famous line that Rocky’s trainer Mickey Goldmill would come out with to explain why boxers shouldn’t engage in intercourse before a fight. While studies are yet to show that having sex lowers testosterone for any significant amount of time (and some reports have shown the opposite effect in the short term), there’s more to sex than the act itself. Removing romantic relations temporarily could help a fighter to focus on the fight, while exercising self-control and discipline, potentially making them more mentally ready for the bout.

Can Smoking Weed Hinder Athletic Performance?

Mike Tyson now runs a cannabis empire “Tyson 2.0” and has been open about his own sampling of the product. The fighter says that he had his first experience of smoking weed at around 8 years of age and just as the plant is still illegal for recreational use in many states, it is now on Tyson’s banned list too. The effects of cannabis on an athlete are varied and depend on a number of factors. On one hand, weed may help with pain relief and anxiety, but on the other it can dampen motivational levels. Smoking, however, is clearer in it’s disadvantages. Smoke inhalation will bring respiratory issues, and will affect an athletes stamina among other health problems.

“You know, I hate not being able to smoke, I’m doing it like I love it,” said Tyson. “I hate not being able to sleep with my wife but I’m doing it like I love it.”  The “It” that the former champ refers to is training and sacrifice. From a young age, the boxer learned that being the best in the world required him to avoid things that gave him pleasure if they distracted him from the prize. Tyson may have been inactive in the ring since 2020, but it appears as though he will be traveling to Arlington, Texas, to take it to his younger foe.

“I’m living my life disciplined now,” he said, although he noted that he wouldn’t be giving up DMT, a psychedelic drug that occurs in some plants and animals. Whether or not Tyson is victorious once the smoke clears is anybody’s guess, and age is certainly not on his side, but if recent footage of the “Baddest Man on the Planet” is anything to go by, the fighter with the 88% knockout record is coming to Texas to win, and that’s a dangerous prospect for Jake Paul.