UFC bantamweight champ Ronda Rousey may not care much for rival coach Miesha Tate, but her feelings run a different direction when it comes to the group of competitors under their tutelage on TUF 18. Rousey recently revealed it had been tough for her to watch athletes in shoes not so different than her own have their dreams shattered on the show, especially after getting to know them through training.

“It’s a lot more work than I thought it would be, and it’s a lot more emotionally taxing than I thought it would be,” admitted Rousey in a MetroPCS chat with fans captured by MMAWeekly. “You care a lot about these kids. I just felt like any kind of heartbreak or triumph, whatever they’re going through, I share in it. It’s exhausting going through that over and over and over with every competitor. You’re just so emotionally invested in every person that it really takes a lot out of you.”

In fact, the entire process has surprised Rousey but in a good way.

“The talent is great. I’m really impressed with the kind of people that we saw on the show this season for the girls and the guys. All of the fights have been really exciting,” said Rousey. “Really, it has exceeded my expectations.”

TUF 18 is currently taping and will debut on FOX Sports 1 in early September. The cast features bantamweight males and females working towards the distinction of being named Ultimate Fighter in their respective divisions.