Paige VanZant's husband said he wanted his athlete wife to give it a "100 percent" effort, and noted that he was "not making light of anything"
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Paige VanZant and Austin
Austin Vanderford and Paige VanZant
| Credit: Mike Roach/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty

Paige VanZant is a UFC star, but that doesn’t mean she’s got the strength to drown her MMA fighter husband in their bathtub — at his request.

VanZant, 26, playfully tried — and failed — to see if she could hold husband Austin Vanderford underwater as part of an “experiment” the couple documented on Instagram Monday night.

“Question of the night: Is it possible for my wife to hold me underwater and drown me?” Vanderford, 30, wrote on a video shared to his Instagram Story. “I truly wanted her to give it 100 percent.”

He later issued a disclaimer, writing that he was “not making light of anything,” but was “genuinely curious” if VanZant was physically able to drown him.

Vanderford shared video of a laughing VanZant sitting on the edge of their bathtub as she explained that although she gave it her best shot, the experiment was a bust, and Vanderford was able to emerge from her grip “in a second.”

“I did genuinely think I could hold you underwater,” the former Dancing with the Stars contestant said. “If I got your head … This is weird. Anyways, no, I can’t hold you underwater.”

Vanderford — whom VanZant wed in September 2018 — later joked that the attempt was all just a ruse to get the athlete to fawn over his strength, and to give himself “a little ego boost.”

“Truthfully, he was just trying to get me to say, ‘Yes, baby, I’m so blown away by how strong you are,’ ” she said.

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Paige VanZant
| Credit: Gabe Ginsberg/FilmMagic

As for the origins of the unconventional weeknight activity, Vanderford said it stemmed from thoughts he sometimes has while bathing.

“I do go underwater a lot to wash my hair, get the soap off, and it’s always in the back of my mind,” he said. “I think, ‘Man, what if Paige was really pissed off at me today, [and] like, tried to hold me underwater?’ So I did really want to know if it was possible.”

Of course, the couple learned the answer once and for all: “Not even close,” Vanderford concluded on his Instagram Story. “AND I blew her away with my strength.”