The Miz was the guest this week on Rich Eisen’s new podcast Just Getting Started and discussed how he got his start in WWE, the surprisingly difficult journey from The Real World to Tough Enough, and why he loves his job.

There’s no secret The Miz was a reality TV star before coming to WWE. Was it the best platform for him to reach the company? Not exactly. “MTV was definitely my start into the entertainment world,” he confesses. “When I made it, they were all like that’s not supposed to happen and then it made me realize that even when people tell you that you can’t do something, it’s just because they can’t believe they can do it themselves. That doesn’t mean that you can’t.”

Because MTV was not enough, The Miz did what he had to do to make it in the business. “I moved to Los Angeles, started on an independent wrestling scene. I started training with UPW, an independent wrestling scene at the time, to learn the art of professional wrestling, but not only that. I moved out to LA to get acting classes because I knew that was a tool that I would need for WWE, then I had improv classes because I knew those improv skills would be needed. It’s a live audience, it’s one take. So I’m lining up all these tools to get to make sure that I can be successful in WWE. Was it hard? Absolutely. I moved away from everything I knew. I had no money but I invested in myself. I invested in a wrestling school, acting classes, improv classes, a dietitian, and a gym membership because those were all the things that I needed to make sure that I could still do it.”

Even when WWE noticed it and asked him to try out for Tough Enough, another problem surfaced. “Tough Enough used to be on MTV, Real World was on MTV, and the challenges were on MTV. Back then, you couldn’t intermix all those different things.” When Tough Enough moved to CW, The Miz was more than ready. “I tried out, 50 contestants, I made I think the top eight, then I was the runner-up and I didn’t win. It was by audience reaction. If anyone knows anything about me with WWE, I’ve always been a very good person to hate and I’ve always been a bad guy so I looked at that as honestly a blessing in disguise.”

Now, he has the WWE contract, he has the money even if the career was his major goal, and he’s enjoying every second of it. “I love being a WWE superstar. I love going out there each and every week granted. Right now there isn’t a live audience but I love hearing the live reaction to an audience, hearing them, feeling them and getting that initial response. There’s nothing quite like it anywhere else.”

The Miz is currently the star of a WWE 24 episode on the WWE Network, and it reminded him a lot of things about his career. “It was the first time that I sat down and talked about my entire career in totality. It wasn’t The Miz, it was Mike, it was just me talking being honest and raw about my career. It made me start realizing like, wow, I’ve really done a lot of great things in my life, like when I set out to do something, like why it happened, and I’m starting to realize why it happened, it’s because I’m just relentless at everything I do. I want it to be perfect. I want it to be great. It’s just the way I am, it’s just the way I’m wired and I’ll sacrifice everything to get to where I need to be.”

The full episode is available here –

Just Getting Started is Eisen’s first step into the world of personal fulfilment podcasting where he interviews the biggest names from news, entertainment, sports, and pop culture, discussing their career origins and mining their stories on how they got started in a format where audiences can be inspired by their endeavours. New episodes of Just Getting Started drop each Friday and are available at Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, TuneIn, Pocket Casts, Google Podcasts, Amazon Music, and Pandora, among other platforms.

Very Special Thanks to Sean Grabin – All pics and videos courtesy of WWE

By Steph Franchomme

News, Reviews, Social Media Editor, Impact Wrestling Reviewer, Interviewer Well, call me The Boss... And French...

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