Day in the Life of a Pro Fighter - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Day in the Life of a Pro Fighter

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Only a year or two ago, women's mixed martial arts struggled to find a place in the sporting world.

But with a recent rise in popularity, women's M-M-A is growing.

One Minot woman is hoping to make her mark on the sport, one punch at a time.

Reporter Gary Brode followed her around to find out what it takes to be a professional fighter.

Today starts of as any normal day for Jessica Doerner.

She wakes up bright and early, jumps in her car and heads to work, where she is a secretary in the Air Force

But that's where normal ends for Doerner... because she is also a professional mixed martial arts fighter.

(Jessica Doerner, MMA Fighter) "It's in my blood, to fight."

They say the size of the fight in dog is more important than the size of the dog in the fight, this saying might as well have been created for Jessica Doerner.

(Jessica Doerner, MMA Fighter) "I go in to win every time. I'm not going to back off. You can hit me as hard as you can, I'm still going to be right there in you face."

She grew up watching boxing with her father and always liked aggressive sports.

While in the Air Force, she took up kickboxing and transition to mixed martial arts shortly after.

(Jessica Doerner, MMA Fighter) "You just fall in love with it. Something about this sport it just keeps drawing you back."

Going pro in February of 2011, Doerner has a 3 and 1 record.

She trains 2-3 times a day, for roughly 4-6 hours. While many would consider this a nightmare, Jessica sees it as taking one step closer to her dream.

(Jessica Doerner, MMA Fighter) "This is my dream... I just want to do this for a living. I don't want to have to work any other job. I want this to be my main job and my main focus."

(Gary Brode, gbrode@kxnet.com) "One of Jessica's biggest difficulties is juggling her passion for fighting with her passion for the Air Force. Through hard work and determination, she is able to do both."

(Jessica Doerner, MMA Fighter) "Working full-time I really have to improvise. Instead of eating lunch, I'm at the gym. It's like having two jobs basically.

Jessica fights at 125 pounds.

Weighing 135 pounds and needing to cut 10 pounds in a matter of a few weeks takes discipline.

Doerner admits she loses motivation at times, but finds inspiration from others.

(Jessica Doerner, MMA Fighter) "One of the things that kind of keeps me going is that I know there are a lot of people depend on me...

As Doerner will tell you - failure is not an option.

(Jessica Doerner, MMA Fighter) "I'm pretty determined, most people tell me I'm really stubborn, so I'm not going to stop until I get it."

It can be tough to understand why a person would put themselves through a grueling 6 week training camp and a strict diet, just to get punched in the face ... but for Jessica it's just a normal day at work.

In Minot, Gary Brode, KX News.

Doerner is the co-main event for Magic City Mayhem 2, this Saturday at MAYSA Arena.

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