Passion, dedication, excitement, success and making a difference describes David Rodriguez’s career and view on life. Growing up in El Paso, Texas, David retells his story to inspire today’s youth that the most important thing to do early in life is to find something you are passionate about and set your goals. The moment when you realize as an adult you are doing what you ultimately wanted to do as a child is priceless and David tells us why in our exclusive interview with him.
BINGE: When did you get into boxing? Why did you choose to get involved with it?
David: Ha Ha, well…I was 5 years old – I got my ass kicked on the playground by a girl, and my dad told me “I don’t want this to ever happen again.”
BINGE: Why did you stick with boxing and not do a “common” sport?
David: Boxing saved me from a lot of trouble; the boxing gym was my saving grace. I couldn’t play sports at school because I was always getting in trouble. It always had its doors open to me. It was like my sanctuary.
BINGE: Do you think boxing is something that parents over look?
David: In today’s age all the kids are playing video games, or eating McDonalds, it’s like, for me, I had a passion for a sport. It took a lot of dedication and hard work. When you have goals, especially at a young age, you can stay active. What I think is so important is for community centers to always have their doors open for these kids to go. Kids need a place to go to get their energy out. They need to have an outlet to get that out.
BINGE: What else do you find important? Something that has helped you along the way?
David: You need mentors. People who are father-figures. I was very, very fortunate to have people who believed in me, and took me to the gym, and made me work hard, and I really enjoyed it. I loved training hard, I was just so good at boxing, and it was a good feeling of significance. It made me feel important to have people proud of me. That’s why I feel it’s so important to have a community to turn to. Boxing was there for me. A lot of kids and teens have aggression built up, it’s nice for them to go be able to hit a bag so that they’re not going out and hitting other people, or using guns.
BINGE: What still keeps you motivated today?
David: At this point, I love doing charity work, and I love being a face in the community. Especially in my hometown of El Paso, I try to give back to the community as much as possible.
BINGE: Next goal?
David: I’ve won 6 major titles; the only title I’m after now is World Championship. That’s the only goal I have left, the only thing lacking out of my trophy case.
BINGE: What has kept you going in the hard times?
David: I’ll tell you exactly what it is. It’s God. I don’t for one second take my eye off God, no matter how bad I feel. To me, it’s a loving spirit, to know that no matter how down I feel I know that I’m in good company. I know there is a blanket of security over me. If I keep my eye on God, I know I’m going to be okay.
“How many people are in a job they just hate? You know, it’s not worth it. You have to have goals. Like careers, and boxing, you have to work your way up. For me, it’s like, there is a lot of time you spend in the trenches, and little time on the mountaintops, but that’s just life. For everybody. You can’t expect to be on the top all of the time. To get where I’ve gotten, it was a struggle. It can be a lonely place, but you keep going because you have a goal in line.”