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UFC’s Rick Glenn says leaving Costco day job was ‘pretty difficult’

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UFC featherweight Rick Glenn recently left his part-time job at Costco and now trains full time.

MMA: UFC Fight Night-Hidalgo-Weigh Ins Sean Porkorny-USA TODAY Sports

Rick Glenn doesn’t want to make any excuses for his UFC debut loss last September against Evan Dunham, but the biggest thing he took away from that fight was that fighters have to be “prepared all the time.” Glenn believes he wasn’t fully prepared; going into that matchup, he still worked a day job at Costco, which took up quite a bit of his time. The amount of time he was able to dedicate to training and getting better as a mixed martial artist was scarce compared to most UFC fighters.

With losses come change, and that is exactly the case with Glenn. After his “Fight of the Night” in Hidalgo, Texas, he made a bold life decision – one that could pay off in the long run or come back to haunt him. In November, Glenn left his day job at Costco and is now officially a full-time fighter.

After signing with the UFC just a couple of weeks before his debut in mid-September, Glenn initially planned on remaining a Costco employee. But he realized that if he wanted to make it big inside the Octagon, he’d have to make a major change. So, he did.

“I kind of realized that if I’m going to do this and make the most out of it, I gotta make the most out of it,” Glenn told BloodyElbow.com’s The MMA Circus. “If I’m gonna be spending 48 hours a week doing some other job, I’m gonna put that time into training and being with my family. If I can make it work financially, why not?”

MMA is a crazy sport, and anything can change or happen in a heartbeat. Fighters can go from the highest of highs to the lowest of lows very quickly. No fighter is 100 percent safe, as the UFC can essentially release fighters at will. Because of that, Glenn knows leaving his day job was a big risk and said it was a tough thing to do.

“It was pretty difficult. I wasn’t spending enough time with my wife, and it came down to finding a better balance with my home life and training,” he said. “I had the opportunity to offset some costs from work. And the big thing, I think, was the health insurance. That was a huge thing. We didn’t want to spend more on health insurance. We’re switching over to my wife’s employer’s benefits, but we’re paying a bit extra that way. But we have a better balance at home; I see her a little more, and I get to train, obviously, as much as I want.

“It’s different for us, because I’ve always had a steady income, my wife has always had a steady income with a steady employer. So a lot of my time is invested into that one big paycheck, so it is pretty scary that way. You gotta take a lot of things into consideration – making sure you’re getting enough training but not too much, not getting injured, getting enough rest, all of that extra stuff.”

Glenn, who expects to rapidly improve in the foreseeable future, said that everyone around him – his family, friends, coaches and manager – were supportive of his decision.

“They were happy for me,” he said. “It’s been a goal of mine ever since I started just to train and fight full time. So they were really happy and supportive.”