When it comes to work rate inside the ring, Carlos Ulberg has a model approach.

"Try to be slick, and try not to get hit," he explains.

It's a simple and, let's be honest, obvious approach to the game. But it's an important plan to carry out, because when he's not plying his trade inside the squared circle, the mixed martial artist has been known to roam the catwalk.

It might not appear as the most symbiotic relationship, with the 'money maker' being a key target in the fight game, but the 28-year-old Ulberg points out if you're doing the job properly in the ring there's nothing too much to worry about.

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"We're fighters, but we don't want to get banged up," Ulberg says. "The aim of the game is to hit and not get hit, but if we do get hit we're conditioned for it."

Carlos Ulberg with fellow Jockey model Logan Dodd backstage ahead of a show during New Zealand Fashion Week 2018. Photo / Getty Images
Carlos Ulberg with fellow Jockey model Logan Dodd backstage ahead of a show during New Zealand Fashion Week 2018. Photo / Getty Images

Ulberg will keep that same game plan in mind when he steps between the ropes in next weekend's King in the Ring eight-man super cruiserweight eliminator. It's an event unlike most other fight nights. The contenders will fight as many as three times throughout the evening in order to be crowned the king.

It's a familiar setting for Ulberg, who won the heavyweight eliminator in 2017. Now, he'll look to become just the second fighter to be crowned King in the Ring in two weight divisions and follow in the footsteps of City Kickboxing teammate and UFC middleweight title contender Israel Adesanya.

"He's the blueprint man," Ulberg said of Adesanya. "We've had this discussion before, Izzy and I, and he's a lead horse at the moment so it's good to kind of feed off what he's got.

"I'm lucky to have a few guys who have been in the King in the Ring in this gym, who have given me tips on what to do, when to do it and how to play it smart – especially in those first two fights.

"It's good to have people like Dan (Hooker), Blood Diamond and Israel who have been the King in the Ring giving me those tips."

Carlos Ulberg won the heavyweight King in the Ring title in 2017. Photo: Supplied/Calden Jamieson
Carlos Ulberg won the heavyweight King in the Ring title in 2017. Photo: Supplied/Calden Jamieson

Adesanya won middleweight crowns in 2014 and 2015, and also took out the heavyweight division in 2015. He's since gone on to join the world's elite in the UFC and will fight for the interim middleweight title next month in Atlanta.

It's a position Ulberg would like to find himself in later in his career.

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"The whole aim for me is to get into the UFC. We're getting there slowly but surely, but the time is now and I guess everything will fall into place, but I need to really knuckle down.

"I'm going into my peak, so it's about that time to really start getting into it."

After competing at King in the Ring, Ulberg will fight again overseas in April. He says he hopes to fit a couple of bouts in next month and has been putting in work to get his body ready for what would be a short turnaround.

He hasn't been the only one in fight camp at the gym, with Adesanya preparing for his bout in Atlanta and Australian UFC star Alexander Volkanovski joining the City Kickboxing team for his camp ahead of a bout in Brazil in May.

"It's really good to have a few of these boys jump in and join me while they get ready for their camps. That power and grunt, you can just feel the emotion when we're all going through that pain."