"A boxer's life is just a constant struggle. I mean, this is a poor man's sport. You don't see rich people trying to do this. I mean, what do they need to do it for? I see more of a poor person putting in the hard work and the dedication to be somebody."
Since the age of 8, Andrew Ruiz has been fighting in the ring. More than a decade later, Ruiz has become an undefeated professional boxer with a record of 9-0 wins with 5 K.O.'s at only 21 years old. Despite having an impressive record at such a young age, Ruiz explains that the obstacles boxers go through are rough. Before a fight, boxers must reach a certain weight requirement. If this weight requirement isn't reached, the boxer is either forced to forfeit a certain percentage of their paycheck to the opposing boxer or risk their fight altogether. "I think that the biggest obstacle is making weight. Nobody wants to be told that they can't eat this or that they can't eat McDonald's fries. My walking weight is about 155 lbs., and to go from that to 138 lbs., it's going to take a toll on my body." Through the support of his family and his girlfriend of three years, Mercedes Montoya, Ruiz is able to fight through these obstacles and make his way to the top. "The support system that I have is an amazing one. I mean, the support from my family, my friends, my girlfriend- She's one of my biggest supporters. When it comes to dieting, she'll skip a meal with me and the last couple of days before weigh-ins, she won't eat. That's why I appreciate her. Because she goes through the same Hell that I go through basically."