I’ve had the honor & privilege to train alongside and watch  Sityodtong fighter Rachel Reinheimer from the time she began training in mixed martial arts. She came to SYT back in 2009 after watching the Ultimate Fighter Show. She had a dream to become a MMA fighter and thought what better place to start.

Rachel had recently become divorced, raising her two young children and working full time for the federal government. Many of her friends probably thought she was crazy or having a midlife crisis. I mean she was starting out in her mid-thirties in a male dominated sport. Oh wait…women were barely even recognized as competitors in MMA back then. So yah, she had something to prove to all the naysayers.

I remember the day she asked me to be her opponent for a Muay Thai smoker..she was jumping out of her skin with delight after begging me to take the fight. I wanted no part of it, but her eagerness was that of a kid in a candy store and when I submitted she lit up like a Christmas tree! How could I say no to that??

It would be the start of a long road of  challenges for Rachel….she competed in a few Muay Thai smokers and  jiujitsu tournaments, coming up shy of a win.

Rachel wanted to prove to herself and to her team that she had what it takes to prepare for a camp and compete. She IMG_0740thought “At my age, it was important for me to prove myself through hard work and perseverance”.

Rachel even suffered an ACL tear  and had surgery a few years ago, which to most would be a huge setback to their training and dream. But that did not stop her or deter her in any way.

She felt it was the best thing that ever happened to her. At first she thought “my days of being athletic were over. But then, I changed my diet, my conditioning, the way I train. It strengthened my mind and body in a way I never would have predicted.”

At forty-four and after six years of hard training Rachel’s time has come. For her fight camp, she has been working Muay Thai, jiujistu, wrestling and mma sparring evenly.  She said “I don’t want to make any predictions or anticipate my opponent’s game plan based on her first fight; I just want to work my game and be prepared where ever the fight goes. I don’t want to over think it. I am just going to work my game. I am working really hard, but keeping it focused and smart, too.”

On May 9th, at Toe 2 Toe Fight IIRachel Reinheimer will be making her Amateur MMA debut  at the Portland Expo in Portland, Maine. Her opponent Hillary Cooledge is also making her Amateur MMA debut fighting out of First Class Fitness & MMA in Maine.

As for Rachel she feels  so grateful and fortunate to have awesome trainers and teammates that know when to push her. She thinks Sityodtong is an incredible gym, but to her  it’s become family. ” It’s where I started. If you have ever been down to that gym you can feel the magic. The trainers and my teammates have given their time and effort to build me from the ground up with blood, sweat and tears. I want to make them all proud”.

It is my hope that when Rachel walks into that cage  on  May 9th that she walks in  knowing she has already won…her dream has come true! She’s a MMA Fighter!!


For Tickets:

Support Rachel by using fighter code MMA3

Categories: Amateur Fights

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