Noah Ohlsen: Training for a Fractured Competition Season

Noah Ohlsen(4)-Noah-Ohlsen

Sean (00:00):

Hi everybody and welcome to another edition of Two-Brain Radio with Sean Woodland. On today’s episode I speak with six-time CrossFit Games competitor Noah Ohlsen. The Two-Brain Radio archives are full of great shows that you might’ve missed. We’ve got amazing stories from the community, sales and marketing tips and the best of the business world, all delivered in three shows every week, so to stay in the loop, subscribe to Two-Brain Radio where ever you get your podcasts. Noah Ohlsen has been one of the most consistent CrossFit athletes out there since he made his debut at the Games in 2014. In six appearances he has finished inside the top eight five times and he took second overall last year. We talk about the bold prediction he once made to Dave Castro, his memorable first career Games event win in Mary last year and how he has changed as an athlete and a person since his rookie season six years ago. Thanks for listening everyone. Noah, thanks so much for doing this, man. I really appreciate the time. How you doing?

Noah (01:07):

I am doing relatively well given the circumstances, adapting to training at home and like you said, just taking it day by day.

Sean (01:16):

Yeah. How are you dealing with this sort of new normal that everybody’s trying to get used to right now?

Noah (01:22):

It’s been a couple of weeks since the coronavirus has caused a stir here in the States and the new norm, I guess I’m still figuring out, I’m sure everybody else is too. Last week gyms were asked to close, so that was kind of a big transition for me. I train around the corner, my gym Peak 360, it’s not my gym but the gym that I’ve trained that for the last 10 years, was closed. And so I started adapting on the fly, trying to put together a home gym. I had actually been offered a squat rack rig combo for my house about a month ago from a good friend of mine and I turned it down cause I said, no thanks. I actually prefer training at the gym. I like that environment. And when this all started to unfold, I called that friend back and I said, Hey, if that offer still stands, I’ll take it.

Sean (02:12):

You’re obviously operating under the assumption that the Games are still gonna happen and the season is going to get back on track. How are you able to keep your fitness at the level you need to keep it at in order to be ready to compete in Madison?

Noah (02:26):

Yeah. It’s so weird. I don’t think anybody has that figured out to a T just yet. I’ve talked to a couple of different athletes. Some of them said, yeah, as of last week I put myself in off-season mode and I’m just like strength training until they give us notice and then a month out I’ll start ramping up my metabolic conditioning. I kind of am still figuring it out. I think last week I took it as like a set-up week, get the gym situated, figure out what I was going to do programming wise. This week has thus far kind of been back to normal training, maybe a little bit less volume than usual. I was slated to compete at the mid-Atlantic championships that were, I want to say it was like this week or next week or something like that coming up pretty soon or the first week in April. It was the first week in April, I’m sorry.

Noah (03:19):

And that’s obviously not happening. Rogue was the next one after that that’s been pushed back a month. So I really don’t know when the next time that I am going to compete is going to be, I’m hoping that it’ll still be the Games which is set to go the last week of July into the first week of August. Although the Olympics were slated to be that same week and those just got postponed. So I don’t know, I mean that didn’t sound good when I heard that announced, but it didn’t change anything for us just yet. So I’m just keeping my fingers crossed. I’m not getting any younger. So the less Games attempts that I get while I’m still sub 30, that won’t be a good thing.

Sean (04:05):

Let’s go back into Noah Ohlsen’s history. What sports did you play when you were growing up?

Noah (04:11):

Growing up, the one sport that comes to my mind because I played it the longest and was the most passionate about it was lacrosse. My dad was a two-time all American lacrosse player at Brown University and he kind of coached me in that. I got pretty good, was on some travel teams, some all star teams and thought that that was going to be my future. I wanted to play in college, play pro. Here and there, I played some other sports, I did a little bit of flag football, a year of tackle football, soccer for a year. And then my freshman year of high school, the high school that I was set to go to, didn’t have a lacrosse team. And the one that the most local school that had a lacrosse team was very far away. And so I had to make the decision, do I want to uproot my whole family and life as I know it and go kind of pursue that or do I want to stay with all my friends that I had built the last few years and I decided to kind of start over and stay at my high school, found a new sport, I wrestled for a year, didn’t really love that.

Noah (05:12):

And then I got into swimming and water polo and played that all the way through my first year of college, which was right around when I found CrossFit.

Sean (05:21):

Why do you think water polo was able to fill that void that was left by lacrosse?

Noah (05:26):

I would imagine cause it’s a team sport, it’s relatively aerobic. I was very comfortable in the pool so it was kinda— like wrestling is a very, very skill based sport. You have to be really strong. At that point in time, my freshman year of high school I was not very big or strong. I wrestled in the 112 weight class and I had no skill background prior to that at all. And so I really struggled and I think going in the water polo, having a little bit of swimming background, being able to, some of the motions of that are similar to lacrosse. You’re passing the ball, you’re trying to score a ball in the net. So I had never put two and two together. But now that you ask that, that makes sense.

Sean (06:08):

How do you go from water polo to CrossFit?

Noah (06:12):

So I was playing club water polo at the University of Miami my sophomore year and I had kinda hit a plateau there. I mean I wasn’t planning on going anywhere with that. I was kind of at that point just doing it for fun and to stay in shape and around. And I was getting probably less minutes cause I had transferred from Clemson to Miami. The Miami team was very tight knit already. And so around the time that I was feeling like I wasn’t enjoying myself quite as much, I was getting into weight training in the gym, my freshman and sophomore year of college and I saw a poster one day, keep this story short and sweet cause I think I’ve told it a couple times, but there was a jacked guy running on the beach who happened to be Guido Trinidad, who’s a Games athlete and now, one of my best friends.

Noah (07:01):

But I saw a picture of him and I was like, Whoa, I want to look like that dude. And it was advertising Peak 360 CrossFit, call this number. So I called the number and went and checked it out. The gym looked so cool. I had never seen a CrossFit gym with ropes and barbells and just, it was like dream gym for a meathead. And I tried it out and that was it. I made the decision, you know what I did both for a little while, water polo and lacrosse, and kind of felt like I needed to pick one or the other to commit myself to. I chose CrossFit and I’m glad I did.

Sean (07:31):

When in that CrossFit journey did you say, Hey, you know what, I could be a competitor here.

Noah (07:37):

Relatively quickly. It was, I started in 2010 and the 2011 Open was like six months after I had started and I was already like enjoying competing with the classes and I knew Guido had competed previously. So I said, I’ll throw my hat in the ring and try the Open and see what happens. And I don’t know why, but I had high expectations even though I had just started and I was really bummed that I didn’t make Regionals that year, but I went and watched Regionals, got even more fired up. And then I came back in 2012 and that was the first year that I was able to make Regionals.

Sean (08:15):

You started getting serious about CrossFit at the same time you were at the University of Miami and you were also in a fraternity. How did you manage to keep focus on training and not party too much?

Noah (08:26):

Yeah, it was an interesting time and in the midst of it, I didn’t realize how much I was balancing or I just didn’t give it much mind. And somebody actually a freshman in college who just joined Peak the other day said, Hey, when you were at UM you were doing CrossFit, right? And I said, yeah, I was. And he said, how did you manage that? And I said, well, not only was I in school, but I was also coaching classes at the gym. I was in fraternity and I had started the Canes CrossFit club. So I was kinda in charge of managing that. And there was one more thing that I had going on. Fraternity, coaching, the CrossFit club, competing in CrossFit. So a lot of stuff going on at once. And there was no secret. Like I realized when I was telling this kid that it just kind of happened the way it did.

Noah (09:19):

And when you’re forced into a situation like that, you make it work. You don’t think about it, but you, I would go train early in the morning and then go to class all sweaty and then leave class all sweaty and train again and then go back to class. And then from class, go coach and train one more time, go home and do homework, go to bed or not even go to bed. There were some nights that with the fraternity we had the pledge tasks and stay up all night. And there were times I’ll admit, where I’d have that red solo cup and when nobody was looking I’d, like toss it over my shoulder and pretend like I had had the whole thing myself. But I dunno, it was a good time and I’m glad that I did it because I think it kept me balanced. If I had not had that experience and for the last 10 years had been doing just CrossFit, I don’t know if I’d, I wouldn’t say I’d be regretful, but I’m glad that I have some fun kind of crazy memories to look back on.

Sean (10:15):

What possessed you to tell Dave Castro that you were one day going to be out on the competition floor that year you went and watched Regionals?

Noah (10:23):

Honestly, I don’t know. I’m glad that I did. It was just by chance that I was sitting next to him at Regionals in 2011 and I actually didn’t even really know him then. I don’t think he was the Dave Castro yet. Instagram wasn’t really a thing, but I kind of recognized him and somebody told me, Hey, that’s Dave Castro. That’s the guy that like comes up with all the workouts and stuff. And he was just to my right. And so we were kind of small talking and I think I just wanted him to know like, that I wasn’t just a spectator, cause I felt I was that year, but I felt like I could be more than that. So I was just kinda like, Hey, just so you know, you’re gonna see me out there one day. I’m more than just this kid in the stands.

Sean (11:08):

You hadn’t been doing CrossFit very long at that point. What gave you the confidence to say, yeah, I am actually gonna make this happen?

Noah (11:15):

I was just so into it at that point, you know, they say like drinking the Kool Aid. I was obsessed and just training as many times as I could throughout the day and loved consuming all the content back in the day, like the workout demo videos with all the Games athletes. I tried to keep up with them and I wanted to be them and I knew because I was so passionate about it and I was spending so much time and energy on it that it was gonna I was going to go somewhere with it. I didn’t know how far I was going to go, but I knew I was committed to it.

Sean (11:46):

You end up making it to the Southeast Regional the the next year. You finished I think down in the 20th, maybe 24th, I think you took. What did you learn? What’d you learn from that experience?

Noah (11:58):

Honestly, nothing in particular, just that I needed to get better. It was just more time to develop my strength, to develop certain skills. There were some workouts that I did really well on and I had kind of expected to, I came in with a bit of an advantage on gymnastics elements for some reason, I didn’t do gymnastics as a kid, so I don’t know why I naturally just kind of took to those. And so on a couple of those, like Diane, I remember doing pretty well. The deadlift wasn’t heavy enough then, but then I got crushed by the hang cleans at that same weight. I think there was a one or t2-k row, a bunch of pistols and then the barbell, 30 hang cleans a225. And man, I was doing singles, starfish, really having a difficult time there. The snatch ladder, I think I hit 195, so it was just, I just needed time for everything to get better.

Sean (12:59):

You go back the next year, you finished seventh and then the following year you win the whole thing and you’re going to the CrossFit Games in 2014. What was it like for you to realize that dream that I am going to compete with the best in the world?

Noah (13:12):

Yeah, it was pretty crazy. It happened really quickly it felt like, because I went from 24th that year I went back to the gym and I would love to say motivationally, like I was so fired up and I spent a whole year grinding. I mean maybe that was true to a certain extent, but I think I just kinda did what I was doing. I knew I wanted to get better, so I did more and more and more. And then at the 2013 Regional is where I took seventh, seventh doesn’t sound that impressive on paper, but I was in first place going into like the evening event of the second to last day. And that was such a shock. I went from 24th of the year before, came into this year hoping to do better but not necessarily thinking I could qualify. And I ended day one in first place and I was mind blown.

Noah (14:02):

Like when somebody told me that I pulled up the leaderboard and had to refresh it and check and make sure there weren’t any mistakes. And I was like, Whoa, all right, this is for real. I could actually do this. I guess it’s here. I knew it was gonna come someday, but it’s like right here. And unfortunately it wasn’t quite time yet. I still had a big deficit with my deadlift. But anyway, year after that I did end up being able to pull it off the victory at Regionals, which was awesome. I love Regional-style programming and the format of that, like three days, three workouts per day. Not too, too much volume. This skill is relatively, it’s just CrossFit and I’ve always loved that stuff. So Regionals have always been some of my favorite events.

Sean (14:51):

Thirsty for more fitness talk? Every week Two-Brain Radio brings you three new shows filled with inspiring stories and actionable advice. Learn the ins and outs of digital marketing and sales on Mondays. Then join me on Wednesdays to hear from the top athletes, coaches and personalities from the fitness world. On Thursdays, Chris Cooper and other business leaders share their expertise on how to grow your business, solve problems and move closer to wealth. Want to chat? Email with feedback and requests, and don’t forget to subscribe. Now back to Noah Ohlsen. What were your expectations when you showed up in Carson in 2014?

Noah (15:32):

Kind of don’t come in last and that was something that was interesting to me. I started to learn that expectations evolve in the moment because I went from wanting to not come in last and like being surrounded by these guys that were my idols that I had been watching videos of and looked up to big time, to then all of a sudden kind of the same thing that had happened at Regionals. Surprise, I show up on the leaderboard in first place and again was mind blown. I’m like, wait a second, you’re telling me that I am currently beating Rich Froning and Jason Khalipa and all like everybody. And so then I went from don’t come in last to this is amazing. This feels good. Let me hang onto first. And then started to get disappointed as I lost my grip on first place. And I think if I had started the weekend at the Games and somebody told me I was going to finish top 10 I would have been like that’s awesome. That would be really impressive for my first year. But because I had been in first and I dropped down to eighth, I was kind of disappointed with that. But I think that did give me a little bit of the confidence. Like all right, this is for real. You can do this. Like you’ve got potential, you just gotta make sure you bring that to life next year.

Sean (16:51):

What was it like when they actually handed you that white leader’s jersey, you know, with your name on it and has leader printed on it? What was going through your head?

Noah (16:58):

Yeah, I actually have it framed here and I think we weren’t supposed to keep it. I accidentally, like after a workout threw it to my mom in the stands cause I didn’t realize we weren’t supposed to keep it. But anyway, it’s cool to look at for sure. It was just, it was a reminder. I think that was probably the first time that it clicked to me that I could win the CrossFit Games. And that’s something that’s a little thought that’s been in my mind for eight years now that I’ve wanted to try to bring to life.

Sean (17:30):

After finishing eighth that year, you get back to your gym. What’s your confidence level like now as you prepare to train for the rest of your career?

Noah (17:38):

Yeah, it was high for sure. And it wasn’t so much confidence like I’m the man, I got this. It was a little bit of like, I can do this, I need to make it happen. And so I was training more with the mindset that it was possible and that if I put in the work that I needed to, that I could pull it off. And then I ended up finishing eighth again the next year, which was disappointing once again because I did have now this expectation instead of don’t come in last. It was like come in first and every year it feels like there’s been this balance, this game that I’ve played where it’s do I go in with this high expectation and then get disappointed if I don’t meet it? Do I go in with no expectations and surprise myself and excuse me, sorry. I don’t know if he could hear, little burp that squeezed itself out there.

Sean (18:23):

Not a problem.

Noah (18:25):

I actually, ironically, this past year, which was my best finish yet, I imagine that you are going to get to that. So, I’m sorry if I’m jumping ahead, but I went into this year’s Games with probably the least amount of expectation, if not the lowest expectation that I had had of any Games because I’d had such a rough season leading up to it that I kind of was in my head thinking, all right, if this is going to be one of, if not my last year of competing at the Games and being able to hang with the big dogs, I want to enjoy it. I want to soak it all in and remember the good stuff and the fun stuff and not look back on it as like a disappointing experience where I was always so close and didn’t make it. I just want to have fun and really feel good about it.

Noah (19:12):

And I guess that worked. And I’m gonna try to get myself in the same place. I think it’ll be difficult to do that this year now that I’ve done as well as I have and gotten on the podium, I think there’s going to be that subconscious expectation that that’s where I want to land again. But we’ll see. Lower expectations led to a more enjoyable experience and enjoying myself more led to a better performance.

Sean (19:40):

I was going to ask you, why do you think that worked for you on the floor? Because obviously you had your best finish in your career.

Noah (19:50):

Yeah, I think I’ve maybe just was able to be smart and play my game and not get so wrapped up in having to win every event. Years past when I really wanted to do well and I’d set an expectation for myself, I was kind of unrealistic in the events that I shouldn’t have done well in and I would have to admit that there are going to be some that are not in my favor. But in the past I would say like, no, I want to be the best. I have to be in the top five in everything. And so I’d go out really, really hyped up and really emotionally tied to every single event at the Games. And I think sometimes that led me to spiral out if I wasn’t doing well and where I could’ve maybe taken middle of the pack, I ended up going out really hot in like the top five and then really dropping off and finishing in close to last on a few events and having those in there is just not good for you.

Noah (20:53):

So this year not being so emotionally invested in each event and being able to say, Hey, a four-mile ruck run is not really something that I expect myself to win. Let me be smart about this. It’s not gonna feel good to take off and have 20 people start ahead of me, but if I just kind of hang at the same pace the whole time, maybe I’ll be able to pick some guys off the end that do it the way that I used to do it. And so I had some middle ground scores, but I didn’t really have any big blowout terrible scores this year and I had a couple really great scores. So that ended up just working out a little bit more in my favor.

Sean (21:38):

How did the addition of the cuts and knowing that you had to be at a certain level in order to survive to the next round, how did that affect the pressure that is already so great at the CrossFit Games?

Noah (21:52):

I kind of, the mindset that I was in, and this might sound, I can imagine somebody that’s listening to this could say like, Oh, you don’t have the mindset to win, but just the place that I was at last year, I kind of enjoyed the cuts as like these little micro goals throughout the weekend. So typically at the Games it’s just one goal and you have from Monday all the way to Sunday to achieve that one goal and everything else in between is just like a build-up to that. With the cuts, it was kind of like each day you could say, all right, I checked that off my list. I was able to make the cut and keep moving on. So I had the hope that I would not be like right before the cut line. I wanted to be up in the top, but just to be able to make it through those cuts was an accomplishment that I feel like kind of gave me some positive energy to roll through the weekend, if that makes sense.

Sean (22:45):

Yeah. You showed up to the Games last year and you had never won an event in your career, so you go into the sprint couplet and you miss getting that first win by a little more than one second. What was going through your head at that point?

Noah (22:58):

Yeah. Honestly, nothing. It was just kind of like in the zone. I wasn’t thinking about the event win. The first event when thought I had was when I crossed the finish line in my heat. I wasn’t thinking about the heat previous to myself and I looked around and nobody else was there and I was kinda like, Oh my gosh, I did it. And I actually had a friend that was right at the finish line and he like nodded at me and held up the one and I was like, ah. And then it popped up on the screen Matt McLeod’s time. And I was like, wait a second. And I looked back at my time and I was like, ah, dang. It was close. But in the moment it was just push that darn sled as fast as you can, do those muscle-ups unbroken.

Noah (23:43):

Try to get back to the other side as fast as you can. I had again, talking about micro goals. I had a micro goal for myself on that event to not stop pushing the sled. I’ve had a few other events where like, I don’t know, I’m sure everybody listening has had the experience of grinding through something and you probably, if you had to, could go an extra 20 or 30 feet, but sometimes your body just makes you stop. And a few events like the, I forget what it was, during Chaos, we ended up pull that big thing. I wanted to be able to go unbroken the snail. And I stopped in the middle and I was just, I finished it and I was like, did I really need to stop in the middle? I don’t think that I did. And so during the sled push on that one, I said, if you can just make it all the way through, even if you’re trudging along, but don’t stop, that will make me feel good about something. And I was able to do that as well. So it was kind of like a double win.

Sean (24:41):

I think my favorite moment of the Games was getting to watch and call your performance in Mary. Going into that event, what was your strategy?

Noah (24:52):

I was actually pretty nervous about that to be honest. And believe it or not. I knew that those were good movements for me. That’s a pretty good time domain for me on stuff like that. But because I’ve had some events in the past where I’ve blown up, that kind of like lives in the very back of my mind, it’s like a distant memory that’s kind of always warns me like, Hey, don’t let that happen again. And it was, we kind of guesstimated all right, 20 rounds, 10 pull-ups per round that’s going to be, or no, I’m sorry, 15 pull-ups every round. That’s a whole lot of freaking pull-ups. And I was imagining that if I tried to go unbroken, that was kind of my battle. Like handstand push-ups, I think I can do all the fives unbroken, the pistols, I know you kind of just keep moving. But that was the decision I had to make on the pull-ups. Do I want to break it early and try to maintain the whole way? Do I start off unbroken and then when I feel myself starting to fade, then make a change. And that was what had me really nervous, but I was able to just kind of stay in the moment, be relatively aware of what was going on around me and maintain a lead almost the entire way. I don’t know if the lead ever got passed back and forth. I know Mat was within a couple of reps of me of me toward the end and I was able to hold him off, which was very, very exciting and just more than anything, celebrating with the crowd, like people were so into that moment. And that made me even more into it and that’s definitely my favorite Games moment of my career. So far.

Sean (26:30):

You mentioned Mat Fraser being so close to you. What was it like having him breathing down your neck in those, you know, final couple minutes?

Noah (26:37):

I’m not trying to sound like a tough guy or anything. I think on other workouts probably would have been scared of that and for sure there were some that weekend, like the dumbbell snatch hang clean and jerk that I started off a little bit ahead of him and then I could feel him and I knew I was like, he is going to pass me on this one. But on Mary I knew that I had the capacity to hold him off and so rather than being scared of that, it kind of almost fueled me. It was like a fun little game that I was playing and I was happy that it paid off in my favor.

Sean (27:11):

You mentioned the celebration and I think about it and it still kind of gives me goosebumps, but what was going through your head when you step across the finish line and you realize that you had won the event?

Noah (27:22):

Yeah, it was kind of euphoric. I just felt like everything kind of came inward and then flew back outward and I could see thousands of people and my family and my fiance were in the crowd. I spotted them and I just remember thinking, I want to absorb as much of this positive energy and this memory as I can so that I can remember it in great, great detail in the future because I know this is going to be a special moment forever.

Sean (27:53):

What did you think then about your chances of winning the whole thing after you won that event?

Noah (28:01):

That was probably the first time that I realized, it was in the middle of Mary, that I had the realization if I beat Mat on this, I remember I think I was like seven points behind him at that point and I kind of was doing the math as I was doing pull-ups. I said, wait a second, I think this might put me in the overall lead. And I was like, that’s pretty cool. And to be honest, again, I’m sure people will judge this mindset, but I wasn’t necessarily at that point expecting to be able to hold onto the lead for the entire rest of the Games. And so I got it and I was like, this is awesome. I would love to try to make this last as much as possible, but I don’t want putting this leader jersey on to change the way that I’ve been performing. I don’t want to all of a sudden now like feel this pressure and start to perform anxiously and uptight because I need to keep the lead. So I just kinda took it as more of like, Hey, this is cool. Keep doing my thing. And that was it.

Sean (29:00):

You take second overall, you stand on the podium. Best career finish ever. How now moving forward, do you avoid falling back into that expectation trap that may have hindered you in the past?

Noah (29:11):

How now brown cow, what is that from?

Sean (29:17):

I think it’s a nursery rhyme.

Noah (29:19):

Yeah. Yeah. Anyway, so I don’t know how I’m going to not let that expectation play a factor. I just competed in Wodapalooza about a month ago and there were even moments there where I remember on the first event we had to do a run with the rucksack and come back into stadium. And as we’re coming around one by one, the announcers over the loud speaker saying, and here comes so-and-so. And as I came in, Noah Ohlsen, second fittest man on earth and to have them say that was cool, but then it was also like, man, I feel like now that that’s the case, I kind of have a little bit of this expectation to live up to where people watching in the stands, if they’ve never seen CrossFit before, but they know what the Games are and they’re like, wow, this guy took second at the Games.

Noah (30:15):

He should be able to beat everybody here. Right. Cause the guy that took first isn’t competing. And so there was kind of that little bit of, I’m sure that’s what people are thinking and I just need to not really care what people are thinking and recognize that no matter how I do that I kind of have, I’ve built a legacy and it can only get better from here. I think. I’m not sure what could tarnish it at this point unless I do something absolutely ridiculous, which hopefully I don’t do. So I’m just going to keep doing my thing. Hopefully things get better and that’s all I can ask for.

Sean (30:52):

How do you take your experience from 2019 dealing with the cuts and the structure of the Games and now apply that to what we hope will be the 2020 Games?

Noah (31:01):

Yeah. I don’t really think that there are any performance or training changes that I will make and my coach hasn’t really brought anything up in that sense. It’s kinda the same as every year. We go back and we look at the individual events where I didn’t place as high and we did that this year and said, all right, well we’ve got to get better at longer distance running. We’ve got to get a little bit better at monostructural rowing and just a couple of other things like that. So not a whole lot changes. In terms of the cut structure, I don’t know if there are any athletes that are basing their training or the way that they’ll compete off of that. Maybe I’m missing the mark on something there, but hopefully not.

Sean (31:43):

How have you changed as a person from the time when you stepped on the floor to compete at Regionals for the first time to when you finished second in the CrossFit Games in 2019?

Noah (31:57):

I think I’ve developed just a little bit more confidence in myself and who I am versus who I wanted to be. Because back then I was very unestablished in any particular space. And I feel like even as a person, I was pretty insecure in like high school and college, I was not really a stud athlete once I had stopped playing lacrosse. And so once I started to kind of break out a little bit in CrossFit, I really wanted to latch onto that identity of being good. But I was, I dunno, I just always strived to want to like be somebody else. And then once I started to just be myself and do things that felt naturally good and realized that I didn’t have to try to like act tough and cool and fit certain social norms of like what a man is supposed to do and a tough guy is supposed to do. And like, you can smile a lot and be really nice to everybody. And I think back in the day I thought like people would say, Oh, that’s lame or that’s not tough. Or I don’t even want to go there, but there were things that I was called back in the day that I had a hard time dealing with. And then I feel like once I finally started to develop into really feeling secure in myself that allows me now to just live a happier and more fulfilling life.

Sean (33:36):

Final question, and this one might be the most important one, but how is Maximus doing?

Noah (33:40):

Max is great. He’s loving quarantine because we’re home more than we were before. He’s getting more walks a day than ever before. He’s happy, he’s healthy and that is all that really matters. If Joanne and Max are doing well, then so am I.

Sean (33:57):

Well, listen, Noah, I really appreciate you taking the time to do this. I wish you nothing but the best moving forward and I’m very hopeful that we get to see you compete again at the CrossFit Games in August.

Speaker 2 (34:06):

Fingers crossed. Always a pleasure chatting with you, Sean. Thanks buddy.

Sean (34:08):

Big thanks to Noah Ohlsen for taking the time to speak with me. If you want to follow him on social media. He is on Instagram, he is @nohlsen and you can even follow his dog Maximus. He is @maximusohlsen. Thank you for listening to Two-Brain Radio. If you want to take the guesswork out of entrepreneurship, we’ve got a ton of free resources to help you do just that. For free access to guides on marketing, retention, buying, selling, and more, visit I’m Sean Woodland. Thanks for listening and we’ll see you next time.

On Wednesdays, Sean Woodland tells the best stories in the CrossFit community on Two-Brain Radio With Sean Woodland.

Two-Brain Radio presents marketing tips and success stories every Monday, and Chris Cooper delivers the best of the business world every Thursday.

Thanks for listening!

To share your thoughts:

To help out the show:

  • Leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help, and we read each one.
  • Subscribe on iTunes.

Thanks for listening!

Thanks for listening! Run a Profitable Gym airs twice a week, on Mondays and Thursdays. Be sure to subscribe for tips, tactics and insight from Chris Coooper, as well as interviews with the world’s top gym owners.

To share your thoughts:

To help out the show:

  • Leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help, and we read each one.
  • Subscribe on iTunes.

Leave a Reply

One more thing!

Did you know gym owners can earn $100,000 a year with no more than 150 clients? We wrote a guide showing you exactly how.