Wednesday, July 22, 2009

One week before the fight!

Shannon: When the fight gets closer like it is now and we are about a week away, you have trained for what feels like forever (actually six weeks) and know that you are in shape and ready to fight. Mentally, the biggest challenge is getting ready for the fight and believing you are ready. If you doubt you are ready for one second, you will have some issues in the fight if things get tough. The week before the fight is the most difficult training as you are maxing out on everything you do. Your body aches all the time. I have never been as sore as I am now. I think this is because of the added weight lifting I have been doing lately. Mentally, you can get thrown off track for a bit if your opponent changes, but usually only if it is an established fighter where he has a known style and you have seen him fight. In Shawn’s case where his opponent just changed, there is not much to think about as four-round fighters tend to fight other beginners and there is not much to learn about them. You just get yourself as ready as you can and prepare to fight your fight. This also is the case when making choices about who to fight. As a boxer just starting out, information is limited about potential opponents because none have had many fights to see. In my case, if I have a change of opponents then I can find out quite a bit about the guys because they have had quite a few fights. You always take into consideration what style of boxer the opponent is, as you want one that is going to cause you the least amount of trouble. At the end of the day the bottom line is you have to go in and fight. I'm ready to fight!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Getting people out to the fights

Getting people to come out to watch our fights is an important part of getting prepared. Boxing doesn’t draw the audiences it used to, so there’s some work to getting attention for it. A couple of other fighters on the card have been working with press this week for the fights July 31st in Saratoga. Guilderland lightweight Mike Faragon (6-0, 2 KOs) is in a tough, six-round fight with a guy from Puerto Rico, Alberto Amaro (5-3, 2 KOs). Brian Miller (3-0-3, 1 KO), a light welterweight from Schenectady and correction officer at Greene Correctional Facility, is fighting Utica’s Manny Cotrich (1-3). Jaci Trivilino (0-1-1), a nationally-ranked amateur from Plattsburgh who trains with us, is fighting a pro debuter from Cleveland, Trish Dedominico. The main event is a great fight, too: the NYS Heavyweight Championship between Darrel Madison (13-1, 3 KOs), Central Islip, and Nagy Aguilera (13-1, 8 KOs), Newburgh.

Shannon: When I get ready to step into the ring people always ask me how does the media attention affect you? I usually tell them that the media and lots of people being there has no effect on me at all. Before the fight, talking to media is all part of getting fans out to support us. When the bell rings, the only thing I think about is there is a man in the other corner trying to get me so I better get him first. When the bell rings, I really don’t hear anything and go into what many people describe as a "zone". I am so focused that the other guy is the only thing I’m aware of in there. You can’t hear people outside the ring screaming most of the time. The only voices I recognize are my father’s, Billy’s and Shawn’s. Most of the other sounds are just garbled noise. There are a few times in the fight where the outside of the ring comes into focus, like when I knock a guy down or when we are tied up in a clinch. In between rounds, you might hear some things, but most of the time during the fight I am so focused that I don’t notice anything outside the ring.

Shawn: Fighting at home in Saratoga is very cool, but it’s really all the same because I still have to just get into the ring and fight one person. I’m sure I’ll be excited because 1) its my pro debut, 2) it will be in front of lots of friends and family and 3) I get to fight with Shannon for the first time. There will be a lot of people there to see us, so I’m going to be a little anxious to get that WIN and start out on the right path. As for dealing with press, I don’t feel pressure at all. I’ve dealt with reporters my whole career in sports, especially when playing at the levels I did for baseball and football. With that said, I really believe boxing is the hardest and most rewarding sport in the world!!!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Increasing rounds, sparring

Training is really starting to peak for both of us now! It’s hard to keep up with everything at this point. Preparing to fight is so demanding. On weekends, we sometimes travel up to our dad’s boxing camp in the North Country, where we can stay and work out in the full boxing gym, do our running on quiet back roads and get away from other distractions. During the week, balancing our families and jobs can get even tougher.

Tickets are really going well for our fights July 31st. Call 330-6378 for info. Two fighters on the card are having a public workout on Monday, July 13th. Undefeated Guilderland lightweight Mike Faragon and Schenectady 140lb-er and NYS correction officer Brian Miller will be at Schott's Boxing, 21 Vatrano Ave. in Albany, at 1:30 pm. Stop by if you can.

Shannon: In a typical weekday now, I get up and run at 6:30 am, take Devan and Olivia to summer camp and head to the gym, where I’m doing 14 rounds total broken down between hand pads, heavy bag, speed bag and jump rope. I go back to the gym at 6:00 pm where I work on abs and do 300 push-ups. At this point, I don’t believe in much sparring, because I want to limit the number of times I get hit in the head. I do spar with Shawn a few times before a fight to work with him. I don’t like sparring because it goes about 50% and you can get hurt fooling around in there. I have never tried to win a sparring session with anyone and am not one of those guys who thinks beating a guy up in sparring will make you a name or a good fighter, its actually the opposite! I am glad the fight is getting closer as I’m really starting to tire of the training again!

Shawn: I’m feeling really good about the fight right now. I’m pushing my body to the limit on hard training days and taking care of myself with rest and a good diet. My weight is right on target and I’m getting much sharper in the ring. I get different kinds of sparring with Shannon, who is so experienced, but also bigger and stronger; Brian Cloakey, my dad’s amateur boxer from Plattsburgh who has a lot of amateur fights and went to the nationals a couple years ago; and Roger Zapata, an amateur boxer and undefeated MMA fighter who is also a southpaw. We all go at it at a good pace, pushing hard but working with each other to sharpen our reflexes and skills. The last few weeks, things are going to get really serious.

Sunday, July 5, 2009


Here are some stories about us fighting together on the same card July 31st at the Saratoga Springs City Center.

A conversation with Troy boxer Shawn Miller - June 28, 2009
Tim Wilkin, Times Union

Brothers Boxing on Same Card! - June 24, 2009

Boxing is Brothers' Bond - June 23, 2009
Pete Iorizzo, Times Union

Millers Brother Featured on Local Boxing Card - June 23, 2009
Andrew Santillo, The Record

Photos from Press Workout with Miller Brothers
Special Thanks to Katherine Murphy

Press releases and news from Pugnacious Promotions

Poster for the Fights July 31st at the Saratoga Springs City Center.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Training camp picks up

Training camp is starting to kick up another notch as there are about four weeks until our fights July 31st at the Saratoga Springs City Center! For tickets, call us at NY Boxing, 330-6378.

We're beginning to focus on different things as we get into a good roll at camp. We're both looking to peak in four weeks, but our approaches are a little different.

Shannon: My workouts at this stage are focused on helping me maintain my weight, pick up my cardio conditioning and sharpen my reflexes. As a heavyweight with many rounds of experience, I work on getting my body in the best shape with little wear-and-tear before actually getting in the ring. I run for about 30 minutes first thing in the morning and then work out at the gym later on for about 15 rounds (60+ minutes), including pads with Billy, heavy bag, double-end bag, speed bag and jumping rope. I finish up with push-ups and stomach exercises. I need to rest my body more in between as my workouts get more intense. If I push too hard without enough recovery time, I can cramp up at the end of workouts and later on in the day. My weight has been steady in the 230s and I am feeling great right now.

Shawn: For me, the more intense the workout the better. I'm trying to push my body to the limit and build quickness, agility and endurance. Also, fighting at light heavyweight means I need to keep shedding pounds. I train with Billy at the gym doing pads, heavy bag, double-end bag and speed bag, along with jumping rope. At the end, I do exercises with the medicine ball and also a bunch of push-ups. Then I hit the track right after and do 400's (which are a quarter of a mile) as fast as I can run. Recently, I've been doing five sets along with sprints uphill and backwards. I also work on a lot of old school stuff with Billy, including hitting a tractor tire with a sledge hammer and flipping the tire across the field. Looking to pick up sparring the next couple of weeks.


Monday, June 29, 2009

Together on the same card

After years of rooting for each other in different sports, we're training to fight together on the same card for the first time. Thanks to The Record for giving us a chance to share with fans what it takes to prepare to climb in the boxing ring. At the start of training camp on a regular day, we run a few miles first thing in the morning and then hit the weight room before taking care of our other responsibilities, including selling tickets to our fights July 31st. Then it's back to the gym where we work out with Billy Growick, our long-time family friend and trainer. In a typical day, we work out around two hours first thing in the morning and two hours later on. We get to work out at the same time about four days a week.

*Shannon* As I began training for my upcoming fight, I realized it was different this time. My brother is here with me now doing something I've been doing for so long. Shawn has always been there for me during training, but he has acted more as a trainer than a fighter himself. It really is exciting to see my little brother start a career in a sport that I have been competing in for some time. I don't know how often it happens that two brothers compete in a professional sport, but I am very excited to go through training camp with him as we prepare for our fights in Saratoga July 31st.

*Shawn* As a young kid I always remember watching Shannon training for his fights, both amateur and pro. When I was 10 and he was 18, he also won a toughman contest. It is really something special to train with him now and we are both training with the same goal in mind: to reach the top ranks of boxing. Shannon was there for all the games and sporting events I was involved in as a kid and always supported me in my goals. Training with him as a team now means a lot, although it is very hard. Fight night will be a special night for us both!