'It's been a mental battle, but I did it': MMA star Valerie Loureda dons bikini to celebrate pre-fight weight loss (VIDEO)
The 22-year-old has not fought since her second professional fight, in June 2019, when she followed up a first-round knockout win on her debut four months earlier by earning a unanimous decision at Bellator 222.
Her return to action, which will see her face Tara 'Tiny Terror' Graff in Connecticut on August 7, has seen her move to within 11lb of her target weight with nine days until fight night.
"It’s been a mental battle with myself, but I did it," she told her following of more than 243,000 on Instagram, gyrating to music before sending punches and a kick towards the camera.
Loureda was denied the chance to fight in January by injury and faces a Bellator debutant in Graff, who has not fought since she lost the second fight of her career in November 2018, having won her maiden bout a month earlier.
Professional gymnast Mariana Reid was among Loureda's supporters to congratulate her, while she responded to another friend: "We can do anything we put our minds to."
Other fawning admirers likened Loureda's gym dedication to The Rock and praised her discipline during the quarantine imposed in the US.
On her birthday earlier this month, Loureda told her fans: "All I want for my birthday is another win.
"I will make you proud very, very soon."
She will fight on the undercard of the lightweight rematch between Michael Chandler and Benson Henderson at Bellator 243.Also on rt.com ‘Happy Valentine’s Day my babies’: MMA stunner Valerie Loureda leaves little to the imagination in lingerie treat for fans (PHOTO)