UFC Vegas 5: Ed Herman on Longevity and The Retirement Question

Ed Herman, UFC
Ed Herman Credit: Jay Anderson/Cageside Press

When you’ve been in the game as long as Ed Herman has, you’ve seen some things. With 17 years in the professional side of things, including a stint on the Ultimate Fighter 3, he’s lived multiple careers already. Recently, he shared why that’s happened and how much longer it can continue.

On Longevity

Nearly two decades in MMA, including the vast majority of it in the UFC, is no fluke for Herman. Aside from his talent, Herman has also made plenty of changes as he progressed through his career — changes that he attributes his longevity to.  

“Over the years I’ve learned, to help me stick around, just taking care of my body — listening to my body when I need rest,” Herman said. “You know, obviously I’m older now, so I take a little better care of myself. I get more sleep, I’m not out on the town having fun like I used to when I was younger.”

But it isn’t just lifestyle changes that have helped him stick around. Herman also credits this mindset to why he continues to get better even as he approaches 40 years old. 

“But just trying to get better all the time, man. Just always trying to get better,” he explained. “Just always being a student of the game. I always come trying to learn. I’m always in the gym trying to get better.”

And not only is he always looking to improve, but Herman also believes consistency is key. Although he has changed gyms a time or two, there were circumstances behind each of those moves. His last move sent him to ATT in Portland, and it allowed him to put the trust in his support system and allow himself to get better. 

“One thing I think is staying consistent with my coaching staff. A lot of guys jump around, they lose a fight — they think they have to make a major change,” he said. “I trust the guys around me, and when we make mistakes, we go back and we work on fixing them. I think that’s huge.”

On Retirement

Of course with as much time in the game as he has, the question of retirement is one that gets asked frequently. While he has his coaching and real estate investments to fall back on, he’s still enjoying the ride. 

“Just one at a time. I’m trying to enjoy them all now. I’m 39 years old, and there’s been a couple times I thought my career was over with some knee injuries,” he said. “I’m just excited to still be able to do this and compete at a high level.”

And it isn’t just enjoying what he’s doing. Herman, who is looking to extend his win streak to three, believes that he can still make a run. 

“I feel like I can compete with anybody in the world at this division. I’m one of the toughest son of a bitches out there, and anybody who doubts that can stop in the cage with me and say that afterwards,” he declared. “On the right day, I can beat any man.”

This weekend, he’ll get a chance to prove that when he steps in against Gerald Meerschaert as part of the UFC Brunson vs Shahbazyan prelims on ESPN+.