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Eat a Warrior’s Last Meal

Tito Ortiz is cooking up a storm before his farewell fight.

Photo Courtesy of UFC | Licensed to Alpha Media Group 2012
Jacob “Tito” Ortiz intends to retire following his UFC 148 match against Forrest Griffin on July 7 , the same weekend he’s being inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame. Fresh off a 3-mile run in Big Bear, Calif., and a late-night dinner, the legendary light heavyweight graciously shared his views on nutrition and what it’ll take to go up 2-1 on Forrest Griffin before retiring from the Octagon. Want to be a warrior? Here’s your menu.

Eat, Sleep, Eat
Tito Ortiz: I wake up and have a protein shake around 9:30 in the morning. I'll also have a little small meal with carbs. Then I go back to sleep and wake up about 12 o'clock and start my training. After training I'll have another meal with high carbs and protein. I don't eat fried foods, I don't drink sodas, no fast food, no ice cream. I eat a lot of greens. I make fresh  juices about three times a day.

Cram It Down
I don't stuff myself; I just eat until I'm full. I eat whenever I'm hungry. My problem is that sometimes I don't feel hungry and I won't eat. So I have to force myself because I'm burning so many calories a day. I have to eat at least 4,000 a calories just to keep my weight on. Especially up here at Big Bear, which is 7,000 feet altitude. When you're at altitude you burn calories really fast and you can dehydrate really quick, so I have to make sure I drink a lot of water.

Not Guilty Pleasure
If I want dessert I'll eat a protein shake and throw some peanut butter in there. My company, Punishment Athletics, has a supplement line so I use that protein since it has virtually no sugar at all.

Photo Courtesy of UFC | Licensed to Alpha Media Group 2012
Don’t Listen to Your Mom
It started when I was a high school wrestler cutting weight. My mom would make rice, cheese and beans …so I started making my own food: White rice, brown rice, broiled chicken … nothing fried at all. My mom was like, “What are you doing weirdo.” I'm like, “I gotta cut weight.” It's just been a lot of trial and error to find out what your body burns and what works for you.

If Only They Made Sushi Juice
To me, sushi is the best energy food on the market. I also learned that a lot of good energy comes from juicing. [Editor’s Note: No, not that kind of “juicing.” He means actual juice.] I use the Jack Lalanne juicer and mix spinach, carrots, celery, garlic, ginger, apple and lemon. I drink 32 ounces, three times a day. It burns all of the fat out of my body and I lean out really quick. I think people will notice a difference in this fight, versus my last three fights, as to how lean I will be.

Does “Organic” Food Matter?
No. Some people are worried about that and they can't handle some of the pesticides on the vegetables. But my immune system is very strong and I've built a tolerance to a lot of things. As long as I'm using the juicer, I don't get sick. The last time I was sick was 14 months ago. I just eat so clean and the juicing really cleans your system.

Photo Courtesy of UFC | Licensed to Alpha Media Group 2012
Fast Food The Right Way
In America we live on fast food. Now, you can go to fast food restaurants but you should eat clean. Don't eat fried foods. Don't eat cheese or white bread. Don't drink sodas. Instead of sodas or lemonade, drink water. After 8 p.m. I don't eat any carbs. My philosophy is, 'The greener the food, the better.' And I don't overcook food. Even with my kids - candy for them is fruit. I'll give them mango, strawberry, pineapple. That's candy to them.

Playing the Weighting Game
Last year I got up to 247 and that's the heaviest I'd ever been. Maybe it was a mixture of being a little lazy, having surgeries and not doing all the road work I normally do. I used to run four miles a day. But now I'm eating very clean and running three miles a day. This fight against Forrest is very serious to me. So I'm doing the road work again, training at Big Bear, and I walk around right now at 225. I'm strong - my abs are back! I'll be shredded. I might even be 205 on the scales, which is a little light for me. When I fought (Antonio “Little Nog”) Nogueira, I dropped from 232 to 206 in two days and I thought I was going to die. I was unprepared for the fight and I won't let that happen again. I just got too comfortable at home with my family and my kids. But when I keep my mind focused like I'm doing now, it shows when I fight. That's why I came back to Big Bear for this fight. All I do is watch Forrest's (fight) tapes, watch every little move he makes. I eat the right things and I train. I want to make sure that after 15 years I get my hand raised and walk away a winner.

Become a Chef
I prepare my meals myself. I'm big into cooking. I grew up cooking for myself. When I was 18 I got put out on my own. My stepfather gave me $800 and said, “Here, it's time to be a man.” I lived on Top Ramen and water for the first three years, I think. But I learned how to cook. Watching The Cooking Channel helped out a lot. I still watch it all the time and I love it. Chef Gordon Ramsay - I'm a huge, huge fan of his. He's an amazing cook. I've met him on a couple of occasions and he's a great guy and a really, really good cook. I pay attention (to his recipes) for pastas, spaghetti, enchiladas, which are really clean and flavorful. My girlfriend, Jenna Jameson, she loves when I cook. Just reach into the refrigerator and give me four things and I'll make something out of it.

What’s the Go-To Meal
If I'm in training, I'll probably go with some cod with brown rice, asparagus and I use light salt. I will use real butter, a little garlic salt, a little lime and cayenne pepper. If I'm not training, I also make the most amazing root beer barbecue chicken. I have a recipe for that but I'm not going to tell you because then everyone will know.

Photo Courtesy of UFC | Licensed to Alpha Media Group 2012
After the Last Punch is Thrown...
Listen, this retirement for me. I'm just graduating with a master's in marketing, a master's in promotion and a master's in kicking ass. Now it's time to move onto something new. I've always been big into charity and I've worked with the Wounded Warriors Foundation. So I plan on giving back. I've been to Iraq a number of times and I plan on visiting a bunch of Army bases, too.

The Last Supper of Tito Ortiz's UFC Career
It will be the same as it always is: I'm going to hit my favorite sushi spot and eat as much salmon and sushi and white rice as I possibly can. White rice just because it's high in starch and energy and my body burns it really fast.


Watch the grand finale of Ortiz’s career this weekend on Pay-Per-View!

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