Hip-hop star Wiz Khalifa may not be stepping into the UFC octagon anytime soon, but the Pittsburgh rapper has gained a lot of weight while training in mixed martial arts, he revealed Friday.
Khalifa has been training at a Los Angeles gym with jiu-jitsu master Rigan Machado, who is an eighth-degree red and black belt, he told Bleacher Report. He said he desperately needed to learn how to fight.
“My cousins train jiu-jitsu and stand-up as well,” Khalifa said. “I just got tired of getting my a-- whooped, so I figured I would learn how to fight.”
Khalifa, who would rap about his weight on previous albums, reportedly went from 140 pounds to 175 pounds because of the work he put in at the gym.
“I was cool with being skinny before. But as a 30-year-old man, I like myself with more weight,” he said.
Recent Instagram photos of the rapper showed him with a more chiseled physique than in previous years.
It was first learned that Khalifa was training in MMA in May when Fox Sports NFL insider Jay Glazer told TMZ that Khalifa could hold his own in MMA and if he wanted to he could go pro.
“I've been hit in the body by Chuck [Liddell] many times, Randy [Couture], Kyle Long—the biggest and baddest dudes in the planet,” Glazer, who found the gym Khalifa was training in, told TMZ at the time. “This is gonna sound weird, but Wiz is the only dude who has hurt me with body shots. Wiz got me in a body shot where he kept digging, and I was like, 'I think Wiz Khalifa just freaking hurt me. You gotta be kidding me.’”
Khalifa later said he could go pro if he really wanted to, but he liked “rapping better.”
Khalifa recently released his album “Rolling Papers 2” and is set to go on tour with the hip-hop duo Rae Sremmurd.