Former world champion boxer Victor Ortiz, who will fight Andre Berto on June 23 in a rematch of one of 2011's best fights, proved on Saturday he has no excuse if he gasses in the latter stages of his bout.
Ortiz ran the Los Angeles Marathon on Sunday, completing it in a personal-best time of three hours, 27 minutes.
"It was such great fun running with all these world class marathoners," Ortiz said. "I know that made me run better than ever. In many ways, it couldn't be any more different than boxing. I mean, nobody is punching you in the nose, the gut, the kidneys and on the chin and up the side of your head. But in other ways, doing this very much relates to boxing. Conditioning the lungs, the legs and building endurance. That's why all fighters do road work. But 26-plus miles is something else.
"I won't say going 12 three-minute championship rounds is easy. Anything but. But Berto must know how prepared I'll be when he hears I ran this well three months before our fight. I'm very happy."
It was mostly a good day for Ortiz, though not entirely. His manager, Rolando Arellano, also ran in the race but injured his knee. Arellano, who said he will need surgery, didn't quit and finished the race.
"Rolando is a bulldog," Ortiz said. "He finished the marathon hurt knee and all -- in eight hours."
Ortiz, who also surfs frequently and competes in triathlons, will meet Berto in a fight televised nationally by Showtime. The bout is expected to be at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, though the venue has not been finalized.
- Victor Ortiz
- Andre Berto