Zevia Ambassador Leslie Smith
Leslie Smith Athlete

A little bit about Leslie

Leslie Smith is an American professional female mixed martial artist. Her ability to combine focus with her athleticism drew her into the MMA world. She formerly fought for Invicta FC where she was a main card staple of the organization, having fought on the main card four times in the first five shows. She also fought in Bellator Fighting Championships. Smith fights out of the Cesar Gracie Jiu-Jitsu team and is noted for a similar level of high volume striking and aggressiveness to other members of that camp. Smith currently competes for the Ultimate Fighting Championship. She has been a headliner for bout events in Thailand, Australia, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, as well as the U.S. In addition to her MMA athletic skills, Smith is also a notable speaker and an aspiring sportscaster.

How did you get into MMA?

Mere chance intertwined with serendipity brought me into the MMA world. Another draw is the purity and rawness of it. There is something pure about MMA sports. There’s no mask. No hiding. It’s just your metal and physical fortitude, and focus, completely exposed.

If you weren’t a professional UFC fighter, what would you be?

If I wasn’t a professional fighter, I would probably still be a student of something (I’m a life-long learner!), and combine that with my interest in travel or botany. I’d likely be teaching English in foreign countries, or be an international aid worker, while also pursuing my botany interest in parallel.

What is your most gluttonous cheat meal? It’s ok, don’t hold back.

My most indulgent cheat meal is a cheese quesadilla!  

What’s one surprising fact about yourself?

One surprising fact about me is that I had a near show-down with a wild boar in Malaysia. I was hiking by myself in the wilderness in Malaysia when a wild boar approached me, flaunting his large tusks. I immediately climbed up a tree where I stayed for 2 hours, observing the wild boar enjoy my sandwiches and rough up my passport in my backpack down below. The wild boar left after inspecting my trail mix. That experience tested my ability to remain calm.

Top 3 songs currently in rotation on your playlist...GO!

I love the Grateful Dead. I listen to them on repeat before all my fights. The top three songs are West L.A. Fadeaway, Eyes of the World, and Terrapin Station!

What’s your astrological sign?

I’m a Leo! Lion, Roar!

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

To persist and do your best. Persistence mixed with best effort is a skill, and I apply it to everything in life.

How does Zevia fit into your diet/lifestyle?

Zevia fits perfectly with my diet. Notably, it contains 0 calories and 0 carbs, making it perfect treat when I am cutting calories to make weight for a fight (NB: Looking back as a teenager, I never would have imagined that my weight would matter to my profession. But I now have to step on a scale before entering the ring!). Zevia also fits with my lifestyle. It’s completely clean, no filler, and transparent.

Who’s your hero?

My brother and sisters are my heroes because they have all stayed true to themselves by following their own unique paths in life. I admire how we have all chosen unconventional paths, and none of us are following in anyone else’s footsteps! I’m inspired by my siblings’ progress and achievement, and they inspire me to continue progressing on my own path.

What’s your favorite flavor of Zevia?

Ginger Ale!

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