“I’m the complete package, I can fight, box, and adapt to whatever’s in front of me in the ring.”
Ask Lewis Adams what he requires to become a champion and he will give a detailed answer – measured and precise down to the last jab and road run. That, perhaps, is entirely appropriate as away from the ring the 25-year-old lightweight from Basildon earns his crust as a quantity surveyor. When he’s not telling clients how many tons of cement, sand, cabling, glass and steel they might require to construct a new building then he’s rapidly calculating how long it may take him to fight for his first title.
“My next fight is likely to be October 12. The opponent has yet to be confirmed,” he says. “After that, I want to be fighting for a southern area title just before the end of the year, or just afterwards. Then, by the end of next year, I want to have fought for a British title.
“Like everyone, my dream is to fight for a world title, but there’s a long road ahead. Not many guys give up good jobs to box at my level, because the money isn’t there. But I want to give boxing a go.
“There aren’t many people who combine boxing with quantity surveying, either, and it’s difficult to juggle.”
That’s the macro detail. Then, there’s the micro.
“I get into the gym for 5am, finish my boxing session at 7am, then I’ll be in work for 8am. After work, I’ll do my running, my strength and conditioning and track work. It’s basically, eat, sleep and repeat.”
After studying at college and university, Adams got his first surveying job four years ago. He’s now employed by Davis Construction in Essex, where they are supportive enough to be his primary sponsor as well as to give an understanding nod of approval when he needs to take an occasional early cut to make a sparring session. The neat divides of time between 5am white towel and 9am white collar, he can handle well enough. It’s the strain on his stomach that proves a bit trickier.
“Mentally, it can be a stressful job, so you have to be on top of things. It takes a while to adjust to that, but you can do.
“For me, controlling my weight depends on how stressful my work is. I am a bit of a stress eater. When I have a bad week at work, then I have to be careful I don’t head for the fridge.”
Adams is unbeaten after seven pro fights and is impatient to improve the quality of his opponents. Light and agile, but powerful with it, he would have fought the unbeaten Andre Grant in the middle of 2018 for a Challenge belt but the contest was scrapped after Grant injured a rib. It’s meant a slight re-calculation to those precise measurements towards future goals, but nothing a good surveyor can’t reconfigure in his mind.
“I had to fight a replacement – Dean Evans – over six rounds, but that was fine as a chance to gain more experience. But now I want to step up with each opponent. Hopefully, I can get a decent opponent for my next fight and that will push me towards contention for those titles.
Image by Philip Sharkey
“I’m the complete package. I can fight, box, and I can adapt to whatever is in front of me in the ring.”
“I like to look at the moves and angles of some other fighters – mainly Lomachenko – but I don’t really like to base my style on anyone. I prefer to focus on myself and my own style.”
Image by Philip Sharkey
Adams is trained by his father, Richard, himself a former fighter and the motivator who helped Lewis lose weight when he returned home from a four-year spell living in Spain.
“I started boxing at 10. But then my family moved to Spain for four years and I just enjoyed the sun for a little while.
“The family just wanted a change and thought it might be a better life for a time out there. They packed us up and off we went.
“When I came back. I was almost 12 stones and I was shorter than I am now. So, I wanted to lose weight. I trained for about six months and then took up boxing again.
“My dad boxed and so did my brothers – four of them. My dad stopped boxing before I was born, but I’ve got all the tapes and I’ve watched all his fights. “He’s my coach and a big influence. He’s the one who pushes me in the gym. He’ll always be my trainer. “It can be a difficult thing. But when I’m in the gym, we lose the father-son relationship. He’s just the boss and I do what he says. “When we get home, it’s back to being my dad – father and son. We have done it since I was 19 so it’s not awkward.”
Adams knows that if his boxing is to measure up to full potential then the day suit is going to have to stay in the wardrobe – at least for a while.
“The boxing means a lot to me and it’s now getting to the stage where I’ll have to stop work for a while to focus on my boxing.
“I’m upping my rounds now, so I need to spend more time on it. Afterwards, I can then fall back on my career.
“I fight at lightweight at the moment, but the plan eventually is to get down to featherweight. Once I stop work and focus on it fully, then I think I’ll be able to do it.”
No more stress – apart from the easy ones on his muscles in the gym.
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Lewis would like to thank his sponsors for the ongoing support – Davis Construction, Kingswood Estate Agents and Kaymac Construction.
By Graham Thomas