What I learned on that show was very cool. It was a lot for the short time I was there before I got hurt. Most ironic is that's the only injury in wrestling I've had the last 10 years. Because that's the biggest lesson in life I've learned. When I was on that show, I saw everybody's conditioning. From Bob Holly, to Al Snow, to Chavo [Guerrero], to Ivory. They weren't so much as bodybuilders as they were all just around athletes like I was when I played basketball. For basketball season I'd have to drop a decent amount of weight to be able to play football and basketball in college. So, I'd have to drop 40 pounds at least, for me to be able to be ready for basketball for the season.
I went into Tough Enough from the combine for the Rams, and I was trying to be a lineman on top of that, so I was the biggest I'd ever been. 382 was not a good weight for Matt Morgan to be climbing over walls on the beach in California, doing all these crazy Tough Enough things we had to do. I tore my knee doing it because I was too heavy. So the lesson I learned was that I need to be lean and as athletic as possible, and that meant to start picking up three days of cardio and trying to do a proper diet again. Things like that versus trying to lift for mass in the gym. That was the biggest lesson I probably took out of that, one of the biggest lessons. Your cardio has to be up to par. It really does. It's better to be leaner than it is to be big and bulky. I've been very fortunate with my career because I learned that day one.
I've never had to sustain a major injury throughout my career. I've had bumps and bruises here and there, like every other guy, but in ten years I've never had a single surgery. I've never missed a day of time. I've never missed anything due to illness or an injury. So it's better to not be bulky is what I learned day one.
Wrestling INC: You don't hear about that that often with larger athletes [going injury free throughout their careers].
Morgan: You hear the complete opposite usually. Our knees are weak, or our backs go out, or things like that. I was really able to learn from other big men that came before me on how to prepare for that.
Wrestling INC: While you were on that show, it's obvious that WWE officials were very impressed with you before you got injured. How shortly after you got injured did they contact you? Was it pretty immediate?
Morgan: It was pretty soon, I would say it was within a month. So I went back to work at Enterprise, I was actually selling cars for them at the time. I'm out selling cars and I get the call, I believe it was Tom Prichard, that I'd be moving to OVW in Louisville, Kentucky. Here's x amount of money you'll be making. There's no guarantee. Every 90 days technically you could be released. That was a risk I was willing to take. My wife supported me so I had no qualms about it and was ecstatic. I couldn't believe it. I remember jumping around my office all excited about it.
Make sure to check back on Friday for the second part of our interview, where Morgan discussed his stuttering gimmick, working with Brock Lesnar, being released by WWE and if he saw it coming, working overseas, signing with TNA and much more. You can also follow him on Twitter @BPmattmorgan.
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