During the coming months, we’ll be highlighting our fighters in training for the upcoming Belles of the Brawl V in Boston on October 5th. They’ve committed to four months of fundraising and training in preparation to get in the ring and literally fight for a cure. Whether they've had first hand experience, their father has passed or their friend has put up a victory against the disease – they’ve all got a story to tell and they’ve all got a reason to fight. Below you’ll hear from Nicole Bezreh, fighting out of BoxSmith in West Roxbury, MA.

Where are you from?
I'm from Needham, MA.

Where’d you go to college?
I went to Saint Anselm College 2009 for undergrad and University of Massachusetts Boston 2017 for grad school.

Did you play any sports growing up?
I was primarily a cheerleader growing up, but also dabbled some in swim team and gymnastics.

What do you do for work?
I am a Clinical Nurse Specialist in a cardiac surgical intensive care unit in Boston.

Why boxing? Did you ever picture yourself fighting?
I have been intrigued by boxing for years. There is not a specific reason why, but I wanted to try a class....and loved it. I've been taking boxing classes for the past three years whenever my full-time-work/part-time-grad-school schedule allowed. I never really pictured myself fighting. Most people in my world are shocked to find out I'm participating in a sanctioned fight!

Why on earth did you sign up to fight??
When I first started boxing, I didn't even think I wanted to spar, let alone train for a fight! The more I learned about the cause and the event, the more interested I became. After attending my first fight night, I was determined to fight also! I like to challenge myself!

You’re stepping in the ring to literally fight for a cure - where are you drawing your inspiration from? How has cancer affected you?
Unfortunately, I think there are few people that cancer hasn't affected in some way. My grandfather, grandmother, and godmother are all cancer survivors! My brother's best friend and best man passed away at 26 years old this past January from ALL. My motivation to participate in Haymakers (which was already high) sky-rocketed after that. The fight is three weeks before my brother's wedding, and his best man will only get to be there in spirit. We need to find a cure for these diseases!

What is going to be the most difficult thing to give up during your training? (beer, cheeseburgers, time spent watching TV?)
Pasta! Definitely!

When you’re not throwing punches and training -- what other hobbies/interests do you have?
I am fortunate to have many close friends and family members in the area to spend my free time with! Other favorite things include the beach, Boston sports (Bruins and Patriots especially, concerts, and reading!

Who do you think is the most excited to watch you get punched in the face come fight night?
I'm lucky enough to have a lot of supportive people excited for me (and nervous for me)! I'm afraid to guess who wants to see me actually take the punch!

Be sure to check out her fundraising page here and wish her luck! Best of luck, Nicole!