Former Brazilian model Gloria ‘Glorinha’ de Paula recently made her UFC debut, losing to Korean-American Jinh Yu Frey via unanimous decision at UFC Fight Night 187: Edwards vs Muhammad. Despite the loss, Glorinha is still happy with her career move as she gets to display her incredible striking and wrestling skills, rather than posing in front of a camera lens like her previous job.
Gloria, who started working as a model when she was a child, quickly found her passion for mix martial arts and started training in Muay Thai at the age of 17. Soon, she fell in love with the fighting style and decided to take it seriously. She says the major turning point in her life came when she saw former women’s champion Ronda Rousey knock Bethe Correia out in under 40 seconds at the main event of UFC 190 in 2015.
"I fell so in love with Muay Thai that I decided I wanted to make a living from fighting. My trainer advised me to move to MMA because I would have more opportunities. That is what I did," she told Brazilian media (via Dailystar).
In 2017, Gloria de Paula bested Thuany Valentim Fernandes in her debut professional bout at Batalha MMA 8. After going 4-2 in her MMA career, including a win over Rafaela Rodrigues at SFT 16, the Brazilian star got a chance to show her talents in the UFC octagon. In the 2020 season of ‘Dana White's Contender Series’ (DWCS), Gloria de Paula defeated Pauline Macias via unanimous decision, securing her spot in the UFC.
Following her recent loss to Jinh Yu Frey, the now 5-3 fighter took to Instagram and thanked her fans for all the support. Gloria ‘Glorinha’ de Paula admitted that she’s not sad as she still has a lot to learn about the sport. "I just want to thank everyone who was by my side and sent positive vibes! No time for sad stories! It was a learning day, I left (with) hunger to evolve and even more in love with MMA. Believe me, it will always be worth fighting for your dreams," Gloria wrote while sharing a picture of herself with her teammates and sparring partners.
Image Source: Gloria ‘Glorinha’ de Paula Instagram