Everybody has a plan until they get punched in face.
Mike Tyson said that and I think it's a great line but after I heard it I asked myself, "What do you then?".
Tyson's remark is obviously another version of the famous military saying that once battle is engaged your strategy goes out the window. The result is that you have to adapt to situations on the ground.
However, I read Tyson as saying that once you get hit you lose your sense of direction. So, pursuing that idea, I did some research online about taking a punch and my conclusion is that pro fighters don't get confused. They train to take a punch and when they get hit they just keep on fighting as before.
For instance, this boxer explains how pros prepare to take a hit without getting totally confused or knocked out.
1. They do neck exercises.
A strong neck keeps your head from being whiplashed too hard which increases the chance of you losing consciousness.
2. They protect the head against the worst blows.
A punch coming from the side will turn your head and spin your brain knocking you unconscious. Boxers are taught to protect their face from the side punches like the left hook. Straight punches can be negated easily by head-movement and ducking movements.
3. They spin their heads.
Pro's quickly spin their head in the opposite direction off the punch and this small movement deflects much of the damage.
4. They see the punch coming.
That allows you to prepare for the impact by bracing to take the punch.
Most people get knocked out because they are swinging wildly and don't see the punches that their opponents are throwing.
It's also why, in a pro fight, you have two highly trained fighters who can hit hard for 36 minutes but still don't get knocked out.
However, this still doesn't tell us how they recover when, as Tyson says, their plans go out the window.