Tuesday, November 5, 2013
Where are you currently training and how long have you been training?
-I work and train at the world famous Gleason's Gym in Brooklyn. I have trained under Devon Cormack for three years. I got started with 18 months in the amateurs and have been pro since August 2012.
What’s a typical training week like for you?
-I start my day there at 6 AM daily and Devon and I work together to train our clients throughout the day. He works with me on my boxing every morning, and I work other conditioning and cardio training in my spare time throughout the day. I typically only take breaks to eat, rest, or take care of my daughter.
Tell us about your upcoming fight, who you’re fighting and where?
-My next fight will be this Saturday, November 9th against Ana Laura Gomez for Broadway Boxing presented by DiBella Entertainment at the Aviator Sports Center in Brooklyn, New York. It will be my first shot at a professional title, and I’ll be less than a mile from the neighborhood I was born and raised in. I am so excited to take home that UBF belt in front of my home fans.
How did you get the fight nickname “The Heat”?
-Devon calls me “The Heat” because it’s my name and because I bring The Heat! :) Ever since I was in the amateurs I go in and fight bell to bell, using constant pressure to wear down my opponents.
What is your best experience as a boxer? What is your worst?
-I love so many aspects of this sports, it’s hard to say what the best is. I like the idea that when I step into the ring I always have the chance to win. Sometimes in life, no matter how hard you work or try, you never stand a chance. But when I fight, I always have a chance to win.
-The worst part of boxing is the business side of the game. Females are paid so much less than the boys, and it’s sad because we often are the ones who steal the show. After every match I sign autographs and take pictures for hours because people are so genuinely surprised that girls can fight! It’s a struggle in and out of the ring for women, not only do we have to win, we have to convince the crowd and the promoters that we deserve the spotlight too. Every time a female steps in the ring, we bring with us the burden that we are about to make a first impression on the mind of a fan who doesn’t know what to expect. My job isn’t just to fight and win, it’s to make it known that the girls are here and we can put asses in the seats just like the boys.
What advice would you give to other women who are reading this interview and want to get started in boxing?
-Do it! There is no feeling more empowering than stepping inside a ring, standing across from someone who wants to punch you in the face, and saying I’m not afraid. You’ll find strengths you didn’t even know you had.
What or who are your inspirations in boxing and life?
-Since the day I stepped into Devon’s office at Gleason’s Gym I knew I wanted to be a world champion. I wanted a piece of every 125er walking around, and I wanted to be the best. Now, after seeing how hard it is on the business end for females in the sport, I not only want to be the best, I want everyone to know I am the best.
-There are too many Female world champions who are unknown because the top sanctioning bodies who promote their male champions do not do the same for the women. Some of the best boxing matches I’ve ever seen can only be viewed on private YouTube channels because the media outlets won’t cover them. Once I asked a big promoter why they pay the women so much less than the men, and he said, “Because in two years I can put the guys on ESPN, and we can’t do anything with you.” The world is missing out on some epic fights, and by the end of my career I would like to look back and say I made a difference.
You did some amateur kickboxing previously, any plans to continue that or give MMA a try?
-I would love to do a pro kickboxing bout. As an amateur kickboxer I won the ISKA East Coast Muay Thai Title down in Tampa, Florida and the WKA K1 Leg Kick Northeast Title. I basically just love to kick people. Lol
Who are your favorite boxers?
-Mike Tyson and Arturo Gatti are my favorites. Alicia “Slick” Ashley who is the current WBC Super Bantamweight World Champion is my stable mate, and my sparring partner. I totally respect and admire her. She is just an incredible athlete and a beautiful technician in the ring.
How do you enjoy your free time when not training or fighting?
-I like to eat ice cream and hang with Dev.
For those who will inquire we have a couple questions for the male readership as well.
Are you single?
-Taken by my coach and manager Devon.
What do you look for in a guy?
-Boys who can’t fight are instantly unattractive to me. Ha, if I can be you up, you are not the boy for me! Seriously thought, the fight life isn’t easy. Boxing is the only sport you don’t “play”, you have to live it. I couldn’t be in any kind of relationship with someone who doesn’t get it.
What are your turnoffs?
-A boy who can’t punch. Ughhh. Lol
What would you say is your best feature?
-My boyfriend loves my legs. He says that’s why he puts up with all my shit, because I got the best pair of legs in the business. :)
Lastly before we let you go we would love to hear about your future plans and let you send some shout outs.
Any future plans or dreams?
-Keep on doing what I do best, fighting, winning and rising to the top.
Any shout outs you would like to make?
-Big shout out to all the girls in this fight game, grinding every day to make a difference for the next group.
-Also check out my charity "Give a Kid a Dream” which is a volunteer, non-profit organization that was started by the owner of Gleason’s Gym, Bruce Silverglade. We help get troubled inner-city kids off the streets and out of trouble, give them a home at Gleason’s and teach them valuable life lessons through the disciplines of boxing. Devon and I teach the group, and I’ve seen firsthand the lives of so many young kids turn around. I am proud to say one of our students; Paul Anthony won the prized NYC Golden Gloves! Visit our website and pass it on.
Thank you very much for your time Heather and good luck on fight night! Thank you to Keith Bailey at Fallout MMA for putting us in touch for the interview as well. Send your shout outs to Heather “The Heat” Hardy on Facebook and Twitter and check out her website. For those in the Brooklyn area you can purchase tickets to Heather’s fight by calling Gleason’s Gym at (718)797-2872.