"TRAIN hard, fight easy" reads the tattoo on Muay Thai fighter Nick Godbehere's back.
It's the mantra the Westlake 21-year-old has lived by when preparing for a fight.
Training twice a day, six days a week, Godbehere's dedication paid off this month with a dominating win at the Carnage at the Colosseum III fight night.
The event, held at Redbank Sports Centre, showcased some of the toughest fighters in Queensland.
Godbehere claimed the Queensland Mod Thai State Title with a unanimous points decision win over opponent Bryan Hartley.
"I felt pretty confident entering the ring," Godbehere said.
"Once you're in there you just switch on and get aggressive."
Starting strong in the first round, Godbehere quickly landed a powerful knee to Hartley's jaw which set the tone for the rest of the fight.
"By no means was it an easy fight though," he said.
"That first big hit dropped him (Hartley) completely...he was a very tough competitor to come back from that."
Training out of Redbank Plains at Aftermath Gym, Godbehere had the hometown crowd on his side during the five round battle.
"We pushed a lot of promotion for the fight in the area and a lot of people came to show their support," Godbehere said.
"It felt great to win and finally wear the championship belt."
Trainer Will Barrett has been working with Godbehere for a number of years and said the up-and-coming fighter was someone to look out for.
"Younger guys look up to him as a mentor because he trains hard and fights hard," Mr Barrett said.
"I began working with him when he was a teenager and he has definitely grown a lot as a fighter.
"In his state title win, it was good to see that Nick was very smart with this fighting.
"You can tell a nervous fighter because they want to rush in like a bull at a gate, but Nick was very smart, clean and technical.
"He was also stronger, fitter and faster than he's ever been."
In addition to training in Redbank Plains, Godbehere has travelled to Thailand - where the sport originated - to develop his skills at their training facilities.
"I've gone to Thailand twice now and each time the training has been full on," he said.
"Their Muay Thai fighting style over there is different from how it is in Australia.
"Here, it's more westernised and competitors fight more with their hands - in Thailand they focus more on kicks and knees."
Godbehere said his next goal was to win a national title and go on one day become world champion.
In the meantime, he will prepare for his next major fight in March when he will get the chance to defend his new state title.
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