A bump in my MMA road :-(

Discussion in 'Cageside - MMA Discussion' started by WhiteCollarBrawler, Oct 11, 2019.

  1. WhiteCollarBrawler

    WhiteCollarBrawler Active Member
    Amateur Fighter

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2018
    Messages:
    56
    Ratings:
    +83
    Recently ran into a situation, and don't know where else to share it but here.

    I'm currently in grad school studying Data Science / Artificial Intelligence. Ever since I got out of undergrad, I'd been looking for a way to be able to consistently train MMA full time and compete professionally.

    For the past few years, that goal took me overseas to another country. I'd quit my white collar job, and was teaching English to make ends meet, while having the time freedom to train full time. I was given the opportunity to join a high level professional MMA team. Thought this was the perfect arrangement, but it turned out that English teaching income is touch and go. When the students went on holiday (and there were a lot of holidays), I had no income. I made it work the best I could.

    Fast forward to August last year, I had to go to the U.S. embassy for paperwork one day. Didn't have breakfast or lunch, and went straight to 3 P.M. practice. Just my luck, it would be the first time we would have a completely different Wednesday afternoon practice. We had to carry a partner around a track for 2 hours nonstop using various wrestling holds, switching every 100 meters. I hadn't eaten all day and was pissing my pants because I had no energy to keep the piss in anymore. Fortunately, everyone was sweating buckets, so no one noticed.

    The wrestling coach used a cane to whip any stragglers, which would leave welts and sometimes break the skin. He said, "Anyone who quits today can GTFO and never come back." I wanted to quit so bad. But I'd put too much into this stupid personal project already. I just couldn't quit that day. Had no energy and my back was rounded and collapsing trying to hold up my training partner, but I finished the practice. The next time we did this workout, I had a normal meal and cruised through it.

    The next couple weeks, I felt I had some muscle strain in my lower back. I went on 6 mile runs to get my back muscles to naturally fix themselves (dumb and ignorant). It only got worse, my entire hamstring would cramp, and I couldn't walk anymore. Turns out that non-functioning leg was sciatica, I'd gotten a herniated disc and a misaligned sacroiliac joint from that empty stomach workout.

    Tried to see some "specialists" there to fix my back, they only made it worse. The medical bills piled up, I couldn't teach English because I couldn't even sit in a chair without excruciating pain, and everything had come to a standstill.

    Came back to the U.S. February this year to fix my back. Also applied for a Master's program in Data Science / AI and got in. I tried to find a remote job to continue my MMA goals, but no luck getting any replies. The only jobs I could get interviews for were regular 9 to 6 analytics office jobs.

    I turned down two 6 figure offers (one with a major bank) to take a job for only 80K with a small government contracting company, which only consisted of 2 people who were business partners. For the past 5 years, every analytics specialist they'd hired had failed to build a deliverable that was required by the government to win the next round of contract re-bidding. I looked at the specs and knew it was nothing new for me. I made a deal with them to start working remotely full time in September, in exchange for delivering this crucial software for them. They agreed, and these terms were written into the contract.

    I spent the next 2 months burning the midnight oil to get it done ASAP so I could start preparing for my Fall classes and training full time. For 2 months straight, I worked from 8:30 A.M. until 2 A.M. the next morning, until I felt frequent heart palpitations from the lifestyle. 5,000 lines of code, all by myself. I never billed them for a single second of overtime. I more than held up every single bit of my end of the deal.

    I thought everything was in order. Then, come September, they want to "talk" one day. They wanted me to either work in the office, or work remotely for only an hourly rate. Meaning that now that I had burned through the lion's share of the work, and there would only be the quarterly maintenance work on the software, I would not be getting paid most of the time.

    I guess it's a common problem for fighters, a lot of us don't have good tempers. I didn't blow up or say anything inappropriate, but I definitely could have worded things more diplomatically instead of bluntly "keeping it real." I know I could have handled this situation better on my end, but it is what it is.

    I put everything into those 2 months, building that program. 2 months to build something from the ground up, that they had failed at for the past 5 years. 5,000 lines of code, by myself.

    Long story short, I was given the option to voluntarily resign at the end of that conversation.

    Been searching for a remote analytics job for the past 3 weeks, and just like before, no luck. I have a family to support now, and I'm really close to giving up this time. Accepting reality, taking a normal 9-6 office job, and giving up this MMA fantasy.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 5
  2. WhiteCollarBrawler

    WhiteCollarBrawler Active Member
    Amateur Fighter

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2018
    Messages:
    56
    Ratings:
    +83
    [​IMG]
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  3. John Cocktoastin

    John Cocktoastin No Comment
    First 100

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2015
    Messages:
    31,282
    Ratings:
    +37,930
    Adapt
    Improvise
     
  4. Kneeblock

    Kneeblock Jumbo shrimp

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2015
    Messages:
    9,191
    Ratings:
    +18,342
    I think MMA isn't worth it personally. Not when you clearly have the option to do something lower risk, predictable reward. You can still train and even compete here and there, but the data suggests things are less likely to work out chasing the sport as a passion project. It also sounds like whoever was training you was a moron who subscribes to outdated and frankly ineffective training methods.

    That said, the company you're working with also sound like they're pulling the typical screwjob. Always bill overtime because they will always find ways to screw you, especially doing programming labor.

    If you think you're good enough and others believe you can hang in the room with some tough guys, maybe it'll work out, but generally speaking, the master's and regular work sounds like a better idea.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  5. WhiteCollarBrawler

    WhiteCollarBrawler Active Member
    Amateur Fighter

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2018
    Messages:
    56
    Ratings:
    +83
    .
     
    #5 WhiteCollarBrawler, Oct 11, 2019
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2019
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  6. Wild

    Wild TMMAC's Most Handsome Admin
    Admin

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2014
    Messages:
    55,253
    Ratings:
    +111,576
    Good post and advice KB. I agree 100%, but some dude's are just built for adrenaline and competition. Not sure where the OP stands, but I would certainly choose not getting my head smashed daily in training, if I could avoid it.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Ronnie Forney Nut Hugger

    Ronnie Forney Nut Hugger Fighting baked potato
    First 100

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2015
    Messages:
    20,609
    Ratings:
    +33,542
    This thread was created by an AI program.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. Bob Loblaw

    Bob Loblaw Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2015
    Messages:
    790
    Ratings:
    +836
    sue coach
     
  9. WhiteCollarBrawler

    WhiteCollarBrawler Active Member
    Amateur Fighter

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2018
    Messages:
    56
    Ratings:
    +83
    Tried to reply, but the function wasn't working on my phone.

    Honestly, every pro fighter I personally know except one, including the UFC and Bellator fighters, do it as a passion project. Except for that one guy, the most any of the rest of them make per fight is $5,000 to show. Most make around $1,000. Realistically, they're never going to be a big draw or a top contender.

    I'm not trying to go their route, I know I could never beat Khabib or Usman / Covington, so I have no plans to try and be a UFC / Bellator journeyman. I'm aiming for a regional or B-level championship and calling it a day after that.
     
    • Like Like x 4
    • Winner Winner x 2
  10. WhiteCollarBrawler

    WhiteCollarBrawler Active Member
    Amateur Fighter

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2018
    Messages:
    56
    Ratings:
    +83
    And yeah, I do feel I'm good enough to hang in there with some very tough guys. A name UFC fighter was coincidentally training on the the other side of a gym I went to, picked me out and called me over to train with them. That's how I got linked up with the pro team, he had no clue who I was or where I was from.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  11. you too skinny bro!!

    you too skinny bro!! Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2015
    Messages:
    488
    Ratings:
    +896
    and then your brother was killed in an illegal underground fight halfway around the world and now your on a crusade to avenge his death?
     
    • Funny Funny x 2
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  12. WhiteCollarBrawler

    WhiteCollarBrawler Active Member
    Amateur Fighter

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2018
    Messages:
    56
    Ratings:
    +83
    He wasn't killed, just paralyzed.
     
    • Funny Funny x 4
    • Agree Agree x 1
  13. you too skinny bro!!

    you too skinny bro!! Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2015
    Messages:
    488
    Ratings:
    +896
    plenty of other ways to be involved in the sport not just fighting. every state can use a smart dude as a ref or judge.
     
  14. WhiteCollarBrawler

    WhiteCollarBrawler Active Member
    Amateur Fighter

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2018
    Messages:
    56
    Ratings:
    +83
    Nah, I've been offered to join one of the biggest management companies in the industry, it's just not my thing. I'm starting my own AI company, and it just wouldn't make sense to take time away from that to be involved in the business side of MMA.

    I'm only in this sport to fight and make my own mark on the B-level.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  15. Twelve Twenty Four

    Twelve Twenty Four Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2016
    Messages:
    265
    Ratings:
    +285
    It sounds like you're pretty self sufficient, apologies if I'm suggesting something youve already thought about but why not spend the next year building your own company, take what ever jobs you can and give it your all, you might end up with a bunch of small but similar jobs that require you to "maintain" for a few years and from there business relationships build.them selves. Good luck with everything you sound very dedicated
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  16. WhiteCollarBrawler

    WhiteCollarBrawler Active Member
    Amateur Fighter

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2018
    Messages:
    56
    Ratings:
    +83
    I'm in grad school until Spring 2021, so I'm not in a rush to build up my company right away. Fighting is more urgent. I would take any jobs that can be done remotely, just having no luck finding any.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  17. Odin13

    Odin13 Active Member
    Pro Fighter

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2015
    Messages:
    248
    Ratings:
    +490
    Ok, have you fought as an amateur or a pro yet?
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  18. WhiteCollarBrawler

    WhiteCollarBrawler Active Member
    Amateur Fighter

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2018
    Messages:
    56
    Ratings:
    +83
    Fought amateur. Next fight will be pro, but there is no realistic way I could take care of my family doing small show MMA fights at this time. My job title fetches around 120-150K on the market, so I have no good reason to provide them a shit lifestyle instead of bringing in the money that I can. A remote job is the one option that makes everything work, but I just can't seem to find one.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  19. Filthy

    Filthy ZBM2.

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2016
    Messages:
    8,868
    Ratings:
    +13,424
    sounds like the path might be to stay in shape and on weight, training while you do your grad work. I just finished my MSEE, and training had to take a back seat with 3 kids, a job, and a full-time course load. Take a pro fight or two, kick a couple cans to get a 3-0 pro record and wait for a regional show to call when a fighter drops out. You might only be one or two fights from that B-Level belt you have on your bucket list, if you intelligently manage your career.

    Just remember that there's always enough time for what's important
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  20. WhiteCollarBrawler

    WhiteCollarBrawler Active Member
    Amateur Fighter

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2018
    Messages:
    56
    Ratings:
    +83
    The right people would be setting up my fights, I don’t need to pay for management or training.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  21. Filthy

    Filthy ZBM2.

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2016
    Messages:
    8,868
    Ratings:
    +13,424
    sounds like you've got it all figured out.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Funny Funny x 1
  22. Twelve Twenty Four

    Twelve Twenty Four Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2016
    Messages:
    265
    Ratings:
    +285
    Agh that sucks mate. I would give anyhing to work remotely
     
  23. Filthy

    Filthy ZBM2.

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2016
    Messages:
    8,868
    Ratings:
    +13,424
    I work in AZ, my management (even my first-level) is in OR.

    it's got its perks, but nothing is all gravy. It can be a challenge to have your day-to-day work recognized, and staying in front of organizational politics and aligned with the team's vision is a fucker of mothers.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  24. Odin13

    Odin13 Active Member
    Pro Fighter

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2015
    Messages:
    248
    Ratings:
    +490
    Ok, the dream you have isn't very far fetched or unattainable; but you are gonna have to get your ducks in a row and figure out what the mathematics of your situation are, not even how they can be improved, but the black and white of what they are.

    What is your current gym/training situation like? What is your health situation like? What is your time situation like? This is going to determine how you need to go about this endeavor with a realistic and measured mindset and not, basically and bluntly, fuck yourself over with a limited scope of perception.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  25. Odin13

    Odin13 Active Member
    Pro Fighter

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2015
    Messages:
    248
    Ratings:
    +490
    And what is your competition like? This entails what size of shows you are gonna be fighting in, and what competition level of regional show you want to be a champion of, etc. You don't want to rely on the expertise of others in this game... unless you are very, very lucky. And if you are that lucky and get a real coach with an actual strategic mindset, you most likely aren't going to be important enough for them to be using their time to figure out your ascent with full diligence.
     
    • Like Like x 1
Draft saved Draft deleted