Born on 15 October 1989 in Watford in the UK, Anthony Joshua has gone on to become one of the most dominant heavyweights in boxing history
. After taking up boxing at the age of 18 – much later than most – AJ went on to win a gold medal at the Olympic Games before turning pro where he currently holds the WBA, IBF and WBO heavyweight titles.
With a professional record of 22 wins – 21 of which have been by way of knockout or technical knockout – and no losses, it is easy to see why AJ is one of the most respected and feared heavyweight boxers in the sport.
Outside of the ring, Anthony Joshua has been described as respectful, humble and friendly. We’ve put together a list of five things you might not know about the champ.
Image source: boxingnewsonline.net
5. He eats, and eats, and eats
While putting in work at the gym is important to achieve success in the ring, preparation and discipline in the kitchen is just as important. On intense training days, which can include up to four hours in the gym, AJ consumes up to 5,000 calories – double the amount of most average men.
For every kilogram of his massive 113kg frame, Joshua must take in eight grams of carbs, two grams of protein and one gram of fat. Most people wouldn’t be able to finish his breakfast which consists of five eggs, two slices of whole-wheat toast, Greek yoghurt and fruit.
4. There’s a gold post box in his honour
Image source: wikimedia.org
In recognition of AJ’s success at the 2012 Olympic Games, a post box on the Watford High Street was painted gold. It is accompanied by a special plaque that serves as a constant reminder of what the heavyweight achieved. In addition to the gold post box, postage stamps with an image of his achievement were also printed and circulated.
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Image source: southlandpost.com
3. He turned down £50,000 to compete in the Olympics
Competing in the Olympics is a dream of most competitive athletes. That was no different for Anthony Joshua who turned down a £50,000 offer to turn pro, just so that he could compete in the Olympic Games – where he would eventually go on to win the gold medal in the heavyweight division.
When asked about his decision he said, “I didn’t take up the sport for money. I want to win medals.”
AJ would later turn professional and go on to win the IBF title, becoming one of just two British Olympic and professional world champions. He has since made a name for himself as one of the most powerful heavyweights in the sport.
2. He’s no angel
Image source: independent.co.uk
Back in 2011 police pulled Joshua over for speeding and found 8oz of marijuana hidden in his sports bag. Joshua was charged with, and plead guilty to, possession with intent to supply a class B drug, an offense that carries a maximum penalty of 14 years in jail. Luckily for the champ, the small amount of the drug and his guilty plea meant that he was only forced to carry out 100 hours of unpaid work and serve a 12-month community order.
That’s not to say that the arrest didn’t have an impact on his career. AJ was subsequently suspended by Team Great Britain but managed to turn his life and career around to become the champion he is today.
1. He has Nigerian roots
Image source: dailymail.co.uk
Although he was born in Watford in the UK, AJ was born with Nigerian heritage. His mother is from Nigeria and his father is British with Irish/Nigerian heritage. Joshua spent a good part of his childhood in Nigeria, and even attended a Nigerian boarding school, before returning to Watford when he was 12 years-old. Tattooed on his right arm is an outline of Africa, the only country visible in the outline is Nigeria.
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