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Conor McGregor Says There Is No Such Thing as a Self-Made Success. Here's Why. The combat sports superstar says his mindset is always to be number one in anything he does.

By Dan Bova

TIDL Sport

Conor McGregor's retirement plans lasted all of a few months. In early June 2020, the combat sports superstar announced he was hanging up his gloves, but tomorrow night, January 23rd, McGregor will be the main event at UFC 257, facing Dustin Poirier. Conor McGregor says he is in the best shape of his life, citing rigorous training and a newfound focus on post-training recovery.

"I really started focusing on my health," McGregor has said. "Everyone trains hard and eats right, but what about recovery?"

McGregor's passion led him to partner with The Anthos Group to launch a sports recovery line, TIDL Sport, which stands for Tenacity, Intensity, Dedication, and Lifestyle. We reached McGregor to discuss this new plant-based therapy, his entrepreneurial journey, and what pushes him to excel in sports and business.

How do you decide on which products you'd like to support? Is it a gut instinct, research, both?

Conor McGregor: Out of the many ventures I own and operate, the one common theme is my deep-rooted passion and interest in the sectors, which has steered me into getting involved in each venture. From there, just like the fight game, I look at the many different opportunities laid in front of me, do a deep dive of due diligence with my team, and make an intelligent and calculated decision based on the findings. I only get involved in projects that I'm passionate about.

You will not see me backing something that I do not use or believe in. Look at my whiskey business, Proper No. Twelve Irish Whiskey. It's in the family. My late Grandfather taught me the craft of Whiskey at a young age. Now, Proper 12 is the fastest-growing Irish Whiskey that is taking over the globe. I love suits and high-style fashion and always have. My clothing brand, August McGregor, reflects this love and passion I have for style and fashion.

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Health and fitness, given the nature of my profession, is a daily ritual for me. Finding new ways to optimize my training routine is something I always push for. McGregor FAST was formed based on this belief and can be accessed by beginners to elite athletes who want to reach their weight loss goals to overall athletics and everything in between. Part of my health and fitness obsession is the focus of recovery. Ensuring my body is in tip-top shape is essential to maximize my training schedule and go all out without worrying about aches and pains along the way. The leader in this sector is TIDL Sport, which is why I'm in business with them.

How does your mindset as a fighter compare to your mindset as an entrepreneur?

My mindset is always to be number one in anything I do, be it in business or combat sports competition. I believe the key to being number one and successful is discipline, structure, and self-motivation. If you can master these three pillars, you are on the right track to success in any walk of life.

When you're fighting, it is 100% up to you to get the job done. In business, there are many people involved that you need to lead. How do you manage that?
I can not get the job done without the people in my life inside and outside the octagon. I would not be where I am today without my team's help and support. I have a master of tacticians in the business and fight world who are by my side daily advising and supporting me. In business, it's with my partner and manager, Audie Attar of Paradigm Sports, and in competition, I'm led by Coach Kavanagh and a platter of world-class coaches.

Related: From MMA Champ to Whiskey Entrepreneur: a Conversation With Conor McGregor

When I won my first UFC world title in 2015, I said the term self-made did not exist for me. The people who have been around me my entire career shaped the moment I won my first belt. This still rings true today. To get the job done in fighting or business, you must surround yourself with good people who can work alongside those who share the same vision as you. I'm grateful I have this in abundance with my team.

What drives your passion for competing in fighting and business?

The answer is in the question you just asked. What drives my passion for fighting and in business is the competition. I love to compete! I have the hunger and the drive to be number one in fighting and business. That fire has never dwindled, and I feel it never will. The competition and will to win runs through my veins!

What has been your most fulfilling accomplishment?

Hands down, my most fulfilling accomplishment is my Family! They are everything to me. Dee, my fiancé, the underboss of the operation, has been with me since day one. Before, I had a cent to my name, and a vision nobody thought was possible but us. She was there. So, it's been genuinely amazing having her and the kids in my life. They're my world; they've created a newfound purpose and focus for me on achieving new levels of success inside and outside the cage.

Another fulfilling accomplishment of mine is being fortunate enough to be in the position to give back. It's a proud accomplishment that I've been able to give back to my family, my local community of Crumlin, my country of Ireland and other initiatives I've supported. I was honored to be able to support COVID relief in Ireland along with supporting first responder organizations worldwide through my Proper 12 business.
Dan Bova

Entrepreneur Staff

VP of Special Projects

Dan Bova is the VP of Special Projects at He previously worked at Jimmy Kimmel Live, Maxim, and Spy magazine. His latest books for kids include This Day in History, Car and Driver's Trivia ZoneRoad & Track Crew's Big & Fast Cars, The Big Little Book of Awesome Stuff, and Wendell the Werewolf

Read his humor column This Should Be Fun if you want to feel better about yourself.

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