Retired former UFC bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey says people still encourage her to fight again every day, but she does her best to block out that noise.
“There’s not a day that goes by people aren’t telling me to fight,” Rousey said on her YouTube channel (via MMA Fighting). “I have to try and think of it as, would I rather be the greatest of all time, or have everybody think I’m the greatest of all time? It used to be so important to me to have both. But now it’s got to the point where I don’t want to sacrifice myself and my family to prove that anymore to a bunch of people that don’t give a sh*t about me.
“I know, and the people who love me know. It’s no longer a priority in my life. All the people that tell you, ‘Come on, fight again, do this again,’ they would never do that for me.”
Rousey continued, explaining that she finds it difficult that people only see her as a fighter. She credits her husband, former heavyweight contender Travis Browne, with helping her see herself as more than that.
“It’s hard when everyone around you, the value they have for you is how you fight, and how they see you is how you fight, and the only thing they think you have to offer is how you fight,” Rousey explained. “It was actually my husband that taught me I’m so much more than just a fighter. I don’t have to fight myself into the ground to prove that I’m the greatest of all time when I already know that I am.”
Rousey also discussed the difficulties she had walking away from MMA after her infamous losses to Holly Holm and Amanda Nunes. While she had a hard time bowing out of competition, she’s increasingly confident it was the right decision.
“That’s something I really had to deal with stepping away from the UFC was finding my identity without it, because I got so lost in it,” Rousey said. “It’s tough, because you’re with these people and you’re like, ‘Oh my god, I got to live this journey with you, this is amazing’ and then you see some of these Bellator fights and you’re like, ‘Oh my god, this person’s still going?’ I can’t watch it. It makes me sad.”
What do you think of these comments from Ronda Rousey?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 1/30/2020.