Going to jail can either be the best thing to happen to someone or the absolute worst. For Thornton’s Mike Alvarado, it seems to have been a pretty good thing. The 29-year-old professional boxer tells The Denver Post his promising boxing career was on hold after his probation for driving- and traffic-related offenses was revoked last year, landing him 18 months in the Adams County Jail. A year and a half in jail could derail almost anyone’s life, let alone a career that requires near constant training and adherence to routine. That’s why Alvarado sought a transfer to the Colorado Corrections Alternative Program, a 90-day training course at the state’s Buena Vista Correctional Complex. “Oh, it was discipline, discipline, discipline,” Alvarado tells the Post. “It was about respect, loyalty, integrity. They taught us so much about all of that, and you sit there and talk with everybody and go over what led you to the wrong path.” He adds that drinking and partying on the weekends was pulling him down the wrong path, and the prison program opened his eyes. It also got him out of jail early, and he now spends his time training and taking care of his kids while their mother attends school. His trainers say he has a legitimate shot at one of boxing’s several 140-pound titles, considering he’s never lost a fight in 27 tries. Either way, Alvarado says he’s come a long way, and he couldn’t ask for a better outcome. “Things happen for a reason,” Alvarado tells the Post. “I’m excited about what I have in front of me now.”