You’ve been through some madness this past year, but now you’re back in action. How is life for Eddie Alvarez?
My life very much consists of family and training. Being here in Florida makes everything organized and simple. Honestly man, I miss Philadelphia. I miss my friends, family, and the people in Philadelphia, but I couldn’t be happier with the lifestyle change. I get to wake up every day, take the kids to school, and head off to training. We get done around 1 p.m., pick the kids up, do homework, hang out at the pool or the beach, and go back to training again at night.
I bet you don’t miss those Philly winters.
Oh man, those are fun. When it snows, my kids and I used to go out and play in it. We’d go out and have a snowball fight or build an igloo, but when it’s just cold, it’s awful. It’s hard to get to get up for training and get excited.
You’re a member of the Blackzilians. Being that you are neither black nor Brazilian, did you have to go through some initiation process?
No [laughing], it’s more of an expression that everyone from everywhere is welcome. At the beginning, there were black and Brazilian fighters, and it was their way of coming together and saying we are all one. For me, that’s what it says. Everyone that is in there is one unit, and we all work together.
You fight at lightweight, but the past two places you’ve lived are known for some decadent cuisines. How do you dodge those bullets?
Honestly, a lot of it is just tunnel vision. I get in the zone, and I’m only thinking about getting lean, fast, and ready for the fight. When you have that frame of mind, it’s really simple to stay away from the bad stuff. You can see the difference in just one training session when you eat like shit versus when you eat like a lean, bad fighting machine.
You’re back in the cage on November 2. Does it feel good to have a challenge to set your sights on?
It’s funny because I’m at a point in my life where there are no ends to the means. I used to set goals, push, and then I’d achieve them. After that, I’d be like “What’s next?” I’ve begun to realize it’s a never-ending game. I have my goals. I know what I want to achieve, but for me, it’s really just about the next day. I’m really beginning to enjoy what I’m doing, and I’m in a very good place with the right people and right team behind me. I’m enjoying what I do every day.
Your upcoming bout with Michael Chandler is a rematch from your epic battle back in November 2011. In the only other rematch of your career you wrecked Shinya Aoki to avenge the loss. Does your motivation change at all in those situations?
I don’t know if the motivation changes. I’m always motivated to win and dominate my opponent. I never let my losses define me as a fighter. I never let any of my wins define me as a fighter. I think it’s important to not look too far into it. I know what I’m capable of. Unfortunately in this sport, some times you take a loss. The important thing to do is correct the mistakes you’ve made, come back stronger, and show that you are a champion. That’s what I’m going to do on November 2.
A good friend of yours, Frankie Edgar, is the “King of Rematches.” Did he give you any advice for your upcoming rematch?
Since I’ve moved to Florida, I’ve only spoken to Frankie once. He called me to tell me congratulations that I got my rematch with Chandler and talked to me a little bit. But we haven’t really gotten to talk too much. I will call him, though, and might be able to train with those guys a little bit before I go into this next fight.
I once saw Frankie wearing boat shoes in the airport. He defended them because they were Polo, but would those shoes fly in Philly?
Boat shoes. They’re like loafers. [Laughing] To each his own, man. We’ve got our own style. I don’t know how they do it in Jersey, but if that is what he’s rolling with these days, then I’m sure he’s doing it right.