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Cathal Pendred Elaborated On Why He Called Time On His MMA Career

PJ Browne
By PJ Browne
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The loss to Tom Breese at Fight Night Dublin in October made Cathal Pendred contemplate where his MMA career was going.

His passion was diminishing, and partially due to other interests, he felt he could no longer commit himself fully to MMA.

Speaking with Ariel Helwani on the MMA Hour, he explained how this would not equate to a prosperous future in the sport.

Pendred announced his retirement last week via social media.

I just felt like the fire in my belly had dwindled a little bit. I always felt fortunate that I was pursuing a passion and it didn't feel like I worked. It started to feel like it had become a job. I was turning up at the gym, not because I wanted to but because I had to and had to get paid at the end of the day.


Fighting solely for a pay cheque is not something which interested the 28-year-old. He believes such an attitdue can only lead to injury.

I just decided that you can't be half in MMA, you're going to get yourself hurt when you're half-heartedly fighting or just turning up for a pay cheque.

I decided it was time to pursue other ventures.

Specifically, the other venture which he mentions is the opening of a healthy food restaurant, a branch in Dublin of the popular 'Chopped'.

Even previous to the Tom Breese loss, Pendred was planning a break. This was something he felt necessary following a hectic debut year and a half in the UFC.


The last couple of months. I had been planning on taking an extended break after my last fight. I just felt I pushed myself very hard for the first year I was in the UFC and needed a bit of a break.

The all consuming lifestyle of being an MMA fighter did not mesh with the emergence of other interests for Pendred. The time came where he felt moving on was the best option.

Like I said, with MMA, you can't just be half in it. You can't just turn up at the gym and train hard there. It consumes your life. It's a lifestyle. Everything you do revolves around the sport and being in peak physical shape. If you don't do that right, it doesn't work.

Not to point fingers, but you look at people like Johny Hendricks who maybe let it slip a little and your weight balloons up. You've got to be on point all the time.

It was starting to get to a point where I couldn't devote all my time to it. I wouldn't, as a result, be the best that I could be. So, I just said, it's time to move on.

You can watch the interview from the 49 minute mark below.


Picture credit: Ramsey Cardy / SPORTSFILE

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