Eddie Wineland was tapped to fight bantamweight interim champ Renan Barao at UFC 165 due to his recent successes, which include wins over Scott Jorgensen and Brad Pickett. Of course, even before the rugged vet made his way to the UFC, Wineland was one of the WEC’s top fighters for years, and also held the defunct promotion’s belt. What some people might not know about the 29 year-old, is he’s also a full time fire fighter for LaPorte, Indiana.

While speaking to MMA Junkie.com recently, Wineland talked about how he manages to balance his ‘day job’ with fighting, as well as his approach to living life.

“Having my full-time job works out perfectly for me; I only work 110 or so days a year,” Wineland said. “The other 250 days, I’m in the gym and staying sharp. Both are physical jobs, so they require me to be in good health.”

“Working man’s champion is exactly what I am,” Wineland says. “I like to work and stay busy. I create too many side projects and headaches for myself if I’m not working or in the gym. I don’t mind getting my hands dirty and earning my keep.”

Despite his impressive work ethic, Wineland will be a considerable underdog when he battles Barao, who has won 30 straight fights. Although Wineland clearly respects Barao and what he’s done, the challenger noted: “he has yet to face me, so we’ll see how that winning streak fares after Saturday.”

UFC 165 will be hosted by Toronto’s Air Canada Centre. Stay tuned to MMA Convert for all your coverage.