Maintaining his job as a plasterer has helped Jamie McDonnell appreciate being world bantamweight champion. A few days after narrowly out-pointing Tomoki Kameda in Texas four months ago, the WBA title-holder was back plastering walls in Doncaster, south Yorkshire.
"I went back to my plastering job on the Tuesday after I beat Kameda last time," McDonnell (26-2-1, 12 KOs) told ESPN. "I always do it, although this time I will have a holiday after and then maybe stay in the gym if there's a chance of me fighting again on October 24. I'll still do the odd job at the weekend for mates and I've got a couple days graft on my own house to do after I get back from this fight."
Some might think the life of a world champion is all glamour and glory, but not all enjoy annual six-figure salaries. Multi-millionaire Floyd Mayweather Jr's lifestyle is in stark contrast to 29-year-old McDonnell's, who chooses to work in between fights to improve his income and set himself up for life after boxing.
The plastering work, which he does along with twin brother Gavin (13-2, 4 KOs), the European super-bantamweight champion, also gives McDonnell added motivation to keep on winning.
"The grafting is what gets me through the training, because it makes me appreciate the boxing more," McDonnell said. "I get £150 a day and I pick and choose when I want to work. It's paying my mortgage off and it makes me realize I need to keep winning at boxing or I will be back to doing this full time.
"It makes me pull my finger out in training because if it wasn't for the boxing I wouldn't be putting money to the side and would only go one holiday a year. It would be a harder life.
For 10 weeks I knuckle down and live the life to make it a success at boxing. I've got a one year old daughter and I want to give her the best life possible so I'll stick at it for a few years. My brother Gavin still does the plastering as well. It brings us in bonus money and keeps you grounded."
Despite the impressive nature of McDonnell's victory over Japan's Mexico-based Kameda (31-1, 19 KOs), getting off the canvas in round three for a unanimous decision over the previously unbeaten former world champion [114-113 on all three judges' scorecards], being a world champion has not made him a life-changing amount of money.
And for McDonnell, it's all about the money. McDonnell honestly admits it is money - rather than a love or interest of the sport - that is his driving force and that win or lose against Kameda he will consider stepping up a division for a lucrative fight against Manchester's WBA world super-bantamweight champion Scott Quigg (31-0-2, 23 KOs), possibly on November 21.
"As soon as I've been beaten I will be out of the game," McDonnell said. "I'm not fussed. I watch boxing on the telly sometimes but I've never really followed it. I don't really follow boxing history or celebrities and I was at a dinner once with Sugar Ray Leonard and didn't recognize him.
"I dropped on my feet because I'm good at boxing so I've kept doing it for the money and I've ended up alright and a world champion. I don't do it for the love of the sport. I want to earn enough money from it so I can pick and choose when I work after boxing, maybe set a business up."
Unifying the world titles at bantamweight only appeals to McDonnell if the money is right. His fellow Briton Lee Haskins (32-3, 14 KOs), from Bristol, is due to contest the IBF version of the world title with Randy Caballero (22-0, 13 KOs). Haskins is already IBF interim champion but McDonnell, who was beaten on points by Haskins over eight rounds in 2008, is not overly keen on a rematch.
"I know Haskins beat me but that was seven years ago before we had done owt," McDonnell said. "He has stayed at the same place and I don't think he'll beat Caballero if I'm honest, but I hope he does and it's a good fight for him.
"Me against Haskins doesn't draw a massive crowd, interest or excitement even if it's for a world title. It doesn't capture the imagination and why risk it and fight a better name for money? I need motivation and an opponent that will motivate me, someone who is a big name and will draw a crowd in."
McDonnell hopes victory this weekend will lead to a showdown with the Dominican Republic's WBA 'super' bantamweight champion Juan Carlos Payano (17-0, 8 KOs) but if the offer is better he says will consider stepping up a division.
Two-time world champion McDonnell, who will be making a third defence, is planning a late stoppage of Kameda after two weeks based in Corpus Christi where the fight takes place at the American Bank Center in the late afternoon local time.
"There are some big pay days at super-bantamweight for me potentially, more money, better kids," McDonnell said. "The plan is to beat Kameda again and then move up and I'd love the Scott Quigg fight - that would be a massive night.
"We know each other inside out because we've done 12 rounds. I can't be sloppy, I've got to stay focused. I've got to forget the first fight because he's going to bring his A-game to the table and so I am so it could be a totally different fight to the first one.
"I think it will be a fast paced fight, I started too slowly last time so I don't want that to happen again. I believe I will stop him late on. I took him into the trenches last time but I didn't put it on him enough. I think I will make that big statement and then move up."