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Henry Cejudo: The Messenger | Interview

Mike: What’s your favorite hobby outside of the gym? Henry: Baking baby! Mike: Like cakes and pastries? Henry: I’m talking about smoking, lol. Mike: Oh right, of course. I’m high.

Age: 32 Height: 5’4” Weight: 135 lbs. Favorite Meal: Steak with pasta Favorite Cannabis: Indica Flower Gold Medal, Olympic Wrestling, 2008 Beijing Reigning UFC Flyweight Champion

Henry Cejudo was born in Los Angeles, CA and raised in Arizona where he graduated from Maryvale High School as an accomplished freestyle wrestler. He went on to win Olympic gold at the age of twenty-one in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, which we will detail more in an upcoming article about Olympic athletes and cannabis. Since winning the Olympic gold in wrestling, Henry has carved out an impressive MMA career. He is the reigning UFC flyweight champion after defending the title versus TJ Dillashaw at UFC Fight Night 143 in Brooklyn, New York. During the main event fight, Cejudo defeated Dillashaw by TKO (punches) after only 32 seconds. The ref stopped the fight after Dillashaw went down after about thirty seconds of pummeling. Cejudo said he felt Dillashaw go limp right before the referee stepped in. It was a good stoppage according to Cejudo and any debate by Dillashaw’s camp became void after the fighter tested positive for EPO performance enhancing drugs. Erythropoietin (EPO) is produced naturally by the kidneys and works to stimulate the growth of bone marrow and increase hormone production. This is not like taking creatine or any basic supplement, EPO’s are a worldwide banned substance that is meant to increase testosterone and performance artificially. In layman terms, Dillashaw was on that Lance Armstrong level of doping.

Henry Cejudo Science Based Regimen

The Cejudo camp relies simply on balanced diet and good exercise to help Henry perform his best. I say simply but there is really nothing simple about his training routines or eating habits. Team Cejudo is made up of the best coaches, like renowned wrestler Eric Albarracin, who trains many top Bellator and UFC names. They have applied science to Henry’s regimen in every way by tracking every breath he takes and every calorie he expends during each movement of every exercise. They measure so many variables in order to paint a comprehensive picture of when he is gaining strength, exerting strength and recovering strength. Their nutrition program is based on wholesome things from the earth like meats, veggies and of course cannabis. Henry believes in consuming anything in a balanced and natural way and proper diet gives him all the energy and endurance he needs to perform as a champion. His endurance is a testament to what the mind is capable of with exercise and proper nutrition. Where there is a will, there is always a way and Henry’s team proved it by resurrecting his MMA career and by molding him into the #4 ranked pound-for-pound fighter in the world. Over a decade after winning an Olympic Gold Medal in freestyle wrestling, Henry is the defending champ of the UFC flyweight division and will fight to win the vacant title in the bantamweight division on June 8th at UFC 238 in Chicago. Enjoy this conversation with the champ and order the pay-per-view for June 9th to watch him go to work on his next opponent.

Henry Cejudo | Cannabis Cactus

What about your childhood made you so tough?

The adversity in a tough upbringing made me who I am. Being one of seven children raised by a single immigrant mother and I’m a first generation American. Seeing how hard my mom worked to provide for us. Forget the gangs and all that, we were just trying to survive and keep food on the table.

Did you fight as a kid growing up in the hood?

I used to fight for ice cream as a kid. I was nine or ten years old and the drunk Mexican guys would make us go fight and if you were victorious they would give you an ice cream. Paletas as they say in Spanish. I probably grew up more Mexican than anything in immigrant culture. We lived in America but you had to speak Spanish to make it in my neighborhood and in our apartments. Despite all that, I’m a patriotic American and that’s who I am. I represent the red, white and blue!

What a night. Thank you, New York 🗽 #UFCBrooklyn — UFC (@ufc) January 20, 2019

When did you start wrestling in organized competition?

In the fifth grade I saw my brother Angel start wrestling and it was a big inspiration for me. He was a big inspiration for me. My brother was a better wrestler than me growing up and I always wanted to be just as good as him. I surpassed him as a wrestler and he was my main training partner leading up to the 2008 Olympics. He was my coach and is probably the smartest guy I know in the wrestling world. I still look up to him and even though he didn’t make it to the level of wrestling that I did and I admire my brother for his heart, his compassion and for his dedication to his family and to the sport of wrestling.

What’s the difference between winning Olympic gold and the UFC championship?

I became the youngest inductee into wrestling hall of fame among guys like Mark Engel, Kevin Jackson, Mark Shultz and Randy Couture. Between my wrestling accomplishments and the UFC championship, nothing will ever compare to the satisfaction of being an Olympic champion. There is a new winner or upset in the UFC every few months but the Olympics is a once in a lifetime. You are more likely to be struck by lightning or win the powerball than to become an Olympic champion. That’s what makes me special. I did it in two of the toughest sports, wrestling and MMA.

“As far as I’m concerned, I’m the greatest combat athlete of all time.” Henry Cejudo

Henry Cejudo | UFC Flyweight Champion

Tolo: What changed between the first Demetrious Johnson match and the second?

It’s facing my problems. I overestimated my strengths and I overestimated my abilities. I thought I was better than what I really was and Demetrious Johnson humbled me. He beat me in two minutes and thirty six seconds. I didn’t shy away from it, he beat me fair and square. But you know what, I faced it and two and a half years later, we stomped him out. He should have been on some of that natural stuff. That Cannabis Cactus.

Can you talk about how cannabis improves your training and overall quality of life?

First of all, let me say this. Everyone has been lied to in America. Pills are okay, cigarettes are okay, alcohol is okay. But the plant that God has given us that grows from the damn ground, that’s the devil? People need to wake the hell up!

Cannabis has only helped me with my inflammation, my recovery, my joints, my rest and it’s made me happier. I’m not a pothead by any means but I use it every night and everyday for those reasons. To recover, to feel good and to love the world.

I’m pretty sure “POTHEAD” won’t be the first thing anyone thinks after seeing Heady Henry Cejudo performing in the gym like we just did. Fuck.

Henry Cejudo in the gym

What is your favorite way to consume cannabis?

Through a needle… (laughs) Just kidding. Honestly, these days I prefer flowers and edibles mostly. Whatever Cannabis Cactus brings me!

After this next fight, I’m going to be the only guy who has an Olympic Gold medal, flyweight champion of the world and soon to be bantamweight champion of the world! And I’ve been clean all the way, cannabis clean baby!

Tolo: How was it meeting Mike Tyson?

It was cool and I wasn’t even planning on taking the cannabis thing public but when we were talking beforehand Mike Tyson was all like, “You know what Henry, this shit makes me happier. We need more people on cannabis, I’m the bad guy when I’m not on it.” and I was like alright bro, I’m gonna smoke with you. Let’s do this!

Henry Cejudo in the gym

“I don’t need an EPO shot, I’m on that Cannabis Cactus baby, au natural!” Henry Cejudo

How do you fight the stigma between cannabis and being a positive role model?

Look back at the days of Al Capone and prohibition. Through time they realized Alcohol wasn’t the problem. It’s the one who abuses it, just like anything else. Money is not the root of all evil, it’s the love of money that is the root of evil. There’s a balance in anything. If you drink too much water you will die. If you do too much of anything, you will die. That’s all I can tell you.

Cannabis is natural, it heals people. A lot of my perspective changed when I saw this show on CNN with a little girl who was having up to thirty something seizures per day. Her family was super conservative Christian type and they decided to try this new cannabis medicine. A christian conservative family. Praise the Lord! They finally found their medicine. I think people just need to open their minds. I’m a role model and I like to inspire people when I speak the truth and this is just part of who I am. If you guys don’t like me then so be it.

Henry Cejudo in recovery

“I’m gonna smoke it up and toke it up regardless of whether you like me or not!” Henry Cejudo

Anything else you want to add?

I told my mom about how I was using cannabis to recover. I told her that I don’t want to be on that Michael Jackson type medication. It’s part of being uneducated, you don’t know what you don’t know. I had to explain to her that there is no addiction and you do not overdose from it. She thinks differently now.

I’m not the best wrestler of all time or the greatest fighter of all time but I am the greatest combat athlete of all time. I’m an Olympic champion and a UFC champion and no one has done that yet, so I’m taking that crown.

You want the truth, because I’m giving you the truth, and the truth shall set you FREE!!!

Thank you for helping us to change the stigma towards cannabis with your platform as a world class athlete. You are a high profile athlete and it takes balls to come out in favor of anything that is not yet accepted publicly. Thank you for spreading love, peace and knowledge about cannabis medicine to others around you.

And of course, big thanks to your entire team for being so generous and special thanks to Urban Greenhouse, Baked Bros and Dr. Reeferallz for sponsoring this interview on this fine evening. Good luck in Chicago and we will be watching along with the rest of the world.

Henry Cejudo | The Messenger



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