The More Hustle Podcast is all about the fight; the fight to the top, the fight to make it. And who better to know about fighting than the MMA World Champion himself, Georges St-Pierre?
As one of the greatest fighters in MMA (mixed martial arts) history, St-Pierre is a 2-Division UFC Champion, a 3-time former UFC Welterweight Champion, and arguably, the top MMA welterweight of all time. He currently stands as one of the most accomplished figures in MMA history, as not only a fighter but an actor, producer, and entrepreneur as well. If you’re not an MMA fan, you likely know him from the Marvel Universe as Georges Batroc, Batroc the Leaper.
The champ sits down with hosts Brian Calle and Neferteri Plessy to give the More Hustle podcast listeners an intimate look into his origin story, his personal recipe for success, and whether he can be persuaded to come out of retirement.
All in all, the man is a force of nature.
“I don’t think I’m a force of nature,” laughs St-Pierre. “I think it’s ah … there are things that happened to me that made me be that way.”
“If you want to start from the beginning, I was not meant to be world champion,” he continues. “Nobody would have said to me when I was young, ‘Oh one day you’ll become world champion in the sport of mixed martial arts.’ I started martial arts first because I was bullied at school and I started as self-defense. Self-defense transformed into a passion when I started winning tournaments and collecting metals. And after a passion, it became a business.”
Born in St-Isidore, Québec, Canada, he had a rough childhood due to his peers. Kids picked on him. Stole his lunch, his money, his clothing, anything they could to make him miserable to assert their dominance. That’s when, at age seven, he learned Kyokushin karate from his father and later from a Master to defend himself.
“Martial arts taught me confidence,” St-Pierre shares. “When I started to learn martial arts I became more and more confident and that’s how I overcame bullying. I wish I could tell you that it’s like more of a Hollywood scenario where I beat up the bully and everything, but it did not happen like that. I just developed some self-confidence and by building up more self-confidence they stopped bullying me. Because I became more confident it changed my whole demeanor.”
He doesn’t hold any grudges when it comes to his childhood tormentors. Rather, he’s thankful for the lessons he learned because of them. In fact, he founded a charity – the GSP Foundation – that aims to reduce bullying and encourage youth participation in sports.
“I strongly believe that the fact that I was bullied when I was young helped me overcome the bullying that I faced later on in my life in the sport of mixed martial arts, because when you fight someone there’s a lot of trash-talking and a lot of mind games. So I think that gave me an edge in my career as a fighter.”
What inspires his hustle?
“When someone tells me ‘oh you can’t do that, you’re not good enough, that’s never been done before’ that motivates me a lot because that means if I do it, I’m going to be the first to have done it! It’s the best thing you can say to me to motivate me,” he answers.
The best lesson he can give is the knowledge that when you put passion, talent, hard work and confidence together you can move mountains.
“You can have all the skills in the world and as much talent as you want, but if you don’t have confidence … it’s a little bit like a person who has a lot of money in their bank account but no way of accessing it,” explains St-Pierre.
As he went through his journey, what did he have to sacrifice to get to that next level?
“I had to sacrifice a lot of time,” he explains. Growing up his friends were partying and living carefree, but St-Pierre had to sacrifice those aspects of youth as the rigors of athletic discipline demanded.
“I’ve put a lot of work and effort into this,” says St-Pierre.
To answer the title question – he’s only going to fight someone who elevates him. What does that mean? You’ll have to listen to find out.
Tune in for some sage advice, fighting tips, and insight into the hustle it takes to become a world champ. ❖