Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Ultimate fighter learns from fear

  • Print
Georges St. Pierre talks to reporters after winning his welterweight title in March.

CP Enlarge Image

Georges St. Pierre talks to reporters after winning his welterweight title in March.

If Georges St. Pierre needs a job after his mixed martial arts career is over, he might want to consider becoming a motivational speaker.

You don't have to be a fan of ultimate fighting to like this inspirational memoir. You just have to be a human being who deals with disappointments and fear throughout your life.

As an athlete who has risen to the top of his craft -- he is the current welterweight champion of the Ultimate Fighting Championship league -- Quebec-born St. Pierre has had more than his fair share of successes. But the 31-year-old doesn't dwell on the championships he has won and the belts that have adorned his waist.

Instead, the man known simply as GSP focuses on what most of us would perceive as the negatives in his life. He sees defeats as an opportunity to learn and get better and fear as the beginning of every success he has ever had.

"Fear made me. It's why I am in love with my own fear," he writes. "Don't misunderstand me: I don't like fear, but I do love it, and there's a major difference there. Because of what my fear makes me do. Because of how my fear has made me who I am... Some people learn to lose. Others lose and learn,"

The UFC is coming to Winnipeg for the first time on June 15 at the MTS Centre. St. Pierre, however, is not on the card.

The Way of the Fight is divided into five sections and in each one, a second voice helps tell GSP's story -- his mother, his mentor (UFC groundbreaker Kristof Midoux), his master (Brazilian jiu-jitsu teacher John Danaher), his maven (friend and head coach Firas Zahabi) and his "conscience" (friend and manager, Rodolphe Beaulieu).

St. Pierre uses martial arts as a metaphor for life. He delves into fighting techniques to this point in his career, but he is quick to note there is more to winning battles than fists and feet.

While he is the face of his sport today, St. Pierre didn't start out as a winner. He was constantly bullied as a young boy, in part because he couldn't stop licking his lips and developed a red rim of raw skin around his mouth.

"I must have looked like a diminutive clown, or something else, something ridiculous," he writes. "To the other kids around me, I was different, weird, an easy target."

Growing up, he was also fascinated by dinosaurs, the most powerful beasts on Earth for millions of years, but he remains inspired by cockroaches, which he calls "the ultimate adapter and the greatest survivor."

You can understand the affinity.

As an amateur boxer, Free Press reporter Geoff Kirbyson has had plenty of losses.

The Way of the Fight

By Georges St. Pierre

HarperCollins, 225 pages, $29

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition May 18, 2013 J8

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Jaws of life used to free two people after two-car collision

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • PHIL.HOSSACK@FREEPRESS.MB.CA 090728 / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS White Pelicans belly up to the sushi bar Tuesday afternoon at Lockport. One of North America's largest birds is a common sight along the Red RIver and on Lake Winnipeg. Here the fight each other for fish near the base of Red RIver's control structure, giving human fisher's downstream a run for their money.
  • A golfer looks for his ball in a water trap at John Blumberg Golf Course Friday afternoon as geese and goslings run for safety- See Joe Bryksa’s 30 day goose challenge- Day 24– June 15, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Should the city grant mosquito buffer zones for medical reasons only?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google