DES MOINES, Iowa, Nov. 18, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Long before Joe Brammer emerged as a professional MMA fighter known by his peers and fans as "The Southside Strangler," he knew the pain of being an overweight kid in need of a personal and physical transformation. In addition to dieting, the self-discipline it took for him to drop 60-70 lbs. around eighth grade involved extensive workouts, and this training soon sparked a passion for martial arts. Brammer launched the two careers that have defined his professional life in quick succession. He had his first pro fight on his 21 st birthday and became a Certified Personal Trainer (from the American Council on Exercise) at 22 before later adding to his designations Certified Group Fitness Instructor and Certified Sports Nutritionist. His eventful MMA career included a 7-3-1 record (with five of his wins coming by submission), being signed to the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and making his UFC debut at The Ultimate Fighter 10 Finale. He was also the MCC (Midwest Cage Championship) 155 lb. MMA champion, as well as the Glory 155 lb. MMA champion. Since retiring from the ring several years ago, he has made body transformations his full time business. "My main goal," he says, "is to create the most exciting fitness experience possible for my clients. I am committed to their success!" Since opening his first Elite Edge Gym Transformation Center in the Des Moines suburb of Waukee in 2011, he and his growing team of fitness pros have added three more locations throughout the area. The facility has grown to become Des Moines' #1 Group Personal Training Studio. In addition to the group Boot Camps, Elite Edge Gym offers an advanced program called Training for Warriors, which was originally formulated by Martin Rooney, a legendary trainer of UFC Fighters, NFL players, Navy Seals and Army Rangers. Brammer calls this the gym's extension program for when "you've lost all your weight and you're looking for the next thing to keep progressing." The focus is on getting people strong and athletic and looking amazing. Training for Warriors is designed to energize the body, build lean athletic muscle and eliminate aches and pains. When he first took over another gym's lease to open his first location, Brammer's goal was simply to build enough of a clientele to pay his bills and get his new full time venture off the ground. Now with the help of an industry mentor who has 37 fitness facility locations, he has developed a powerful, expansive vision that includes opening from 20-25 gyms throughout the Midwest.