I’m a father, first and foremost, before anything. My kids didn’t chose to be born - I chose that. I have the responsibility and the duty to step up and be as good a dad to them as I can, but I also have to make a living. I have to be able to put food in their mouths, and shoes on their feet. It’s hard work, and I don’t do it alone. I have an amazing wife, and I am a hands on dad, I couldn’t do it without her.
I’m blessed to be able to juggle my professional fighting career with my six kids, and I think I do it pretty well. My kids range in age from 10 weeks to 11 years, and I think I’ve finally figured out a balance.
I take my kids to school in the morning, then head to the gym for the few hours they are in their classes. Right now, that’s not too difficult to manage because they go to the same school, but next year, they will have different schools and different start times, so it might be a little tougher to juggle drop-offs and pick-ups. I am enjoying this schedule while I can.
I try to spend their school time hours doing jiu-jitsu in the gym because that requires lots of bodies, and it’s harder to train at home, but when the kids are back from school and at home I train there.
I have mats and bags, and when I call my training partners, luckily, they understand and they come to me. It’s like I have my own gym right in my house. I feel incredibly lucky that I have the right people in my life that are willing to come to me and train this way so I don’t have to sacrifice my family.
I’m not going to say it’s easy, because it’s really hard. Even though I have six kids, everything seems new to me, and no day is ever the same.
The bottom line is that since I’ve started training at home around my family, and not doing the crazy, full-time camps that everyone else is doing (and that I used to do), my fighting has gotten better. I won my last two Bellator fights, and I am confident going into my next.
That’s because I have my family around me. Nothing could be better.