The road back for former UFC interim heavyweight champion Shane Carwin has begun.
The mammoth Colorado fighter has stepped back in the gym for the first time since having back surgery, and is looking at a May return to the Octagon.
Carwin first made the announcement on MMA.TV and details about his return were subsequently confirmed to MMAWeekly.com by his manager Jason Genet.
Carwin has been sidelined for the last few months due to back surgery to repair a lingering problem that has continued to plague the former champion. He was originally scheduled to return to action on Jan 1 against Roy Nelson, but the surgery put him out of action for an indefinite amount of time.
According to his manager, Carwin is back in the gym and shooting for a return to action around the month of May, which could potentially bring him into the fold for the scheduled Memorial Day weekend card. MMAWeekly.com first reported the card with the addition of the fight between Thiago Alves and Rick Story being planned for the show.
Also a new addition to Camp Carwin will be strength and conditioning coach Jonathan Chaimberg, who will also oversee his diet as he comes back from the injury. Chaimberg works with several top flight UFC fighters including welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre and lightweight contender Kenny Florian.
No opponent has been determined as of yet when Carwin returns, but with heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez on the sidelines for at least half of 2011, there are a bevy of choices for who the Grudge Team fighter could face upon his return.