Seconds out as boxer Marc switches to personal training
A BOXING champion who won 39 of his 46 fights by knockout has turned his talents to personal training.
Marc Woolf found boxing as an 11-year-old when he saw the "Dark Destroyer" Nigel Benn fighting on television.
He found himself a boxing club 2.5 miles from his home – ran there, trained for hours, and then ran back.
By 17 he was boxing for Wales as an amateur and in 2007 became British Boxing Association (BBA) champion.
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In 45 fights Marc had only lost twice and was feared amongst the semi-professional circuit for his shuddering left hook.
But three months ago Marc, of Bedminster, tasted his own medicine when he suffered the first knockout of his career.
Now 34-year-old Marc has chosen to hang up the gloves and use his experience of training for big fights to help others get fit – without getting punched in the head like he was.
"Fair play, it was the first round, and I was out before I hit the floor," Marc said of his last outing.
"I remember going into the ring and the announcer, then the next thing I remember is being in the changing room.
"I asked my mate who was in my corner that day whether the other bloke had turned up and he just hugged me and said the fight was over."
Although Marc, a cruiser weight, had lost twice before in his career he had never been knocked out until the meeting with Mo Kargbo in Birmingham last October 31.
It was an experience that made the former British Boxing Association (BBA) champion and Welsh amateur realise it was perhaps time to quit the ring, especially as he had beaten Kargbo easily in a previous bout.
"I'm very lucky," he said.
"I have fought all over the place – London, Cardiff, Leeds, Birmingham, Liverpool – and every fighter needs to know when it's time to quit.
"I was in very good shape and no excuses, he beat me fair and square so this was my time."
Marc could have pointed to the recent death of his brother for the surprise result but he will have none of it.
"I trained for 16 weeks for the fight – three sessions a day of about one and a half hours each," he said.
"Perhaps my head was not in the right place but he knocked me out and you can't argue with that."
Like many youngsters, Marc found himself in the odd playground scrap but that changed when he found boxing.
Born in Wales, he first came across the sport on the television.
"I was about 11 years old and I saw Nigel Benn boxing on television and thought, 'I want to try that'," he said.
"I found a boxing club about two and a half miles away in the Rhondda Valleys and used to run there, do my training, and then run back again.
"I did get into a few scraps as a kid so I think mum was pretty pleased I found boxing."
While some perceive boxing as a brutal sport Marc says it changed his outlook on life.
"Any aggression I did have went," he said. "Boxing is great for discipline and focus – it gave me a much better outlook on life.
"I knew what I wanted and it also gave me the discipline to walk away from fights."
This mentality helped Marc when he started working on the doors of nightclubs – a job he still does in Bristol.
"Obviously now and again you can find yourself in some very difficult situations and it's all about staying calm and dealing with the situation in front of you."
Now Marc is using his experience to help others reach their fitness goals and beyond.
"I want to use all that is good about boxing to help other people reach their targets," he said.
"People can achieve so much more than they realise and I want to help them reach those goals."
To talk to Marc about a 30-minute taster session call 07850 029628.