#17 - Training Grit In and Out of the Gym w/ Michael Winchester

Updated: Feb 28

In this episode, I talk to Michael Winchester. He is the co-owner of Karhu Strength, and we chat about refining purpose, business ownership, habits that help express your best self, and so much more.


  • (3:13): “Coaching and teaching are essentially the same thing.”

  • (14:42): Refining Purpose as a Coach

  • (22:15): Optimal Health vs Elite Fitness

  • (32:35): Business Ownership

  • (44:39): Daily Habits for Expressing Your Best Self

  • (1:01:48): COVID’s Effect on the Service Industry





Connect with Michael:

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/coachwinchester/

Website: https://karhustrength.com/


Connect with Athan:

Instagram: https://instagram.com/doingtheworkpodcast

Website: https://www.doingtheworkpodcast.com

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/athanschindler


Sponsors:

Strive S&C: www.strivebastrop.com

Strive Human Optimization: www.shobastrop.com

Tracy's Drive-in Grocery: www.tracysgrocery.com





Michael 00:00

If we can impact 130 people's lives, say it's even 100 100 people's lives in a positive manner. And if they are now in a better state of mind, a better physical state, if they are feeling more confident about who they are as human beings, their family life, their home life is going to be improved. If their family lives are better than when they go into the office, they're going to perform better, they're going to do better, if we can continue that kind of a bad kind of an effort, that kind of a pattern and if that pattern can spread out, even just to the confines of our of our city, then we're hoping that that will be enough to start to make changes in the world so we're not going to solve world hunger we're not going to we're not going to make everybody all of a sudden you know, nation stop warring and things like that. But man, I'm not even I'm not even interested in that. I'm just interested in helping out you know, Susie, over here, lose 10 pounds and become more confident with her physical capabilities.


Athan 01:03

Your thing, the doing the work podcast is brought to you by strive strength conditioning, backdrops, Premier gym, that helps you crush it in the gym, so that you can be happy, healthy and successful outside of the gym. Check them out@www.dr bastrop.com All right, I am here with Michael Winchester, a good buddy of mine, a fellow gym owner, Michael, I asked you to be on the show just because I have one you just have a reputation in here in Austin, Texas, your your reputation, reputation precedes you in terms of just being an amazing coach and amazing person. And of course you and I have become friends over the years. So I've gotten to know you a little bit and I know that our listeners, there's just so much for you to offer our listeners. So I really appreciate you for being on the show. Absolutely. Athan, I am I'm super stoked to be here. You and I have known each other for a long time. I don't remember when we first met but


Michael 02:02

oh, we'll call it maybe like eight years, I think at least Yeah, something like that. Yeah. So it's, it's gonna be great to catch up. And thank you so much for having me on your podcast. I'm excited about it, man.


Athan 02:17

When someone asked you like who you are and what you do, give us your your introduction.


Michael 02:22

I'm Coach Winchester, Michael Winchester, I'm a crossfit coach. I'm a strength and conditioning coach. And I hope I'm not overstepping or going too far as to say that, that I'm a leader in our, in our local community in our in our coffee community here in Austin, Texas. And I that's that's kind of like really, how I see it. Yeah, leader, teacher, mentor,


Athan 02:47

a true coach, I think those are the things that, you know, Coach, you know, when there's like a difference between being a trainer and a coach, or, you know, you know, and, and I think you're a coach in every sense of the word, like you said, being a leader, you know, setting the example, coaching beyond fitness, you know, things like that. Yeah, I know a little bit about your background, but for people listening, you know, how did you get into coaching,


“Coaching and teaching are essentially the same thing.”



Michael 03:13

I think I got into coaching really, probably back in college, I was maybe even a little bit before college, but I grew up in Houston, Texas, and played lots of sports growing up, but soccer ended up being my, my sport, the sport that I wanted to devote most of high school and all of college to. And so I ended up playing soccer for four years at Stetson University out in Florida. And during that time, we would host Summer, summer camps for the local youth soccer players. And so it was kind of up to the men's and women's soccer teams to show up to these camps and to coach the kids and to give them you know, a little bit of a little bit of our knowledge, but a really fun time, at the end of the day. You know, having them have fun through their development and through learning, soccer. And so that was my real first experience with coaching. And then after that, I ended up I moved to Europe for a little while, I moved to Madrid, Spain for three years after I graduated, and I was a teacher at an elementary school at an elementary school in Madrid, Spain. And so that was kind of like my second. My second exposure to teaching right which coaching and teaching are essentially the same thing, at least in my mind. So I spent three years teaching elementary school kids English, and then I moved back to Austin in 2008. And I started I did a couple odd jobs. I substitute taught here in a ISD Austin ISD and then I found a job. I got a job working at Lululemon here in Austin right in their first store, helping them open up their first store and develop that first store. And through them I found CrossFit and I hadn't really done much working out since college sports. And man just like I think that we all to a greater or lesser extent have a similar like origin story with CrossFit like, you know, person shows up person tries a CrossFit workout person becomes humbled by the by said CrossFit workout. And then you know they either they either never try it again and stay as far away from it as they can or they are they fall in love with it and take it on and start to dive into that world. And mine was the the ladder, where I absolutely loved it, it was new and different and challenging. And again, humbling. And so I knew pretty quickly, within the first six months of doing CrossFit that I wanted to, I wanted to coach it, I wanted to teach it, I wanted to share it with other people. And so that is that was kind of how I got into CrossFit. And then you know, it's it's been a it's been a hell of a ride ever since.


Athan 06:02

Yeah, you went from being a coach to being a gym owner. And, you know, which is a leap that's challenging and difficult, I definitely want to dive, I definitely have to dive into being a business owner and, and gym owner here a little bit. But I'd like you a little while ago, you said something that I'm so glad that you said it, that coaching and teaching are pretty much the same exact thing. And that's something what I'm doing development with my coaches that work that work for me is, is, you know, it's absolutely paramount that in every single session, you are prepared to teach, you know, the people who show up to your classes, it's not hard to stand up there, read the whiteboard, and then you know, just hit like, you know, hit the timer and let it go, you know, in any monkey can do that. But it takes it takes real care. And a real level of competency to actually teach people something that maybe they they don't know or that they do know and are trying to do a little better. Tell me a little bit more about your your coaching philosophy and and like how teaching plays into that


Michael 07:10

with coaching and with teaching. And for the sake of for the sake of this conversation, we'll just call it coaching. Although I think, you know, at this point, we've established that we both kind of agree that coaching and teaching are the same things. But coaching for me is like, to your point is not about having people come in the gym, and you know, showing them a couple of movements and making sure they understand the workout and then running through the workout of the day and how that's going to look and feel and then hitting the start button on the on the clock. I think that to be a even a good coach or a competent, mediocre coach, that you have to have a care, you said can use the word care. And I agree with that, I think that there's a care and an interest in the person beyond what you're doing in the gym. Right? What we are trying to do, what I try to do as a coach is I want to develop human beings. And so I think back to all of the great teachers and all of the great coaches that I had, at all, you know, at all points in my life. My parents were great teachers. And I had some really good school teachers that I remember fondly that that did a really really good job of delivering information, but also about getting deeper getting beyond the information, and how the information was going to how I was going to be able to take that information and take what they were teaching me and use it outside of the classroom and outside of the school. Similarly, you know, some of my best coaches Track and Field coaches, soccer coaches, were people that were inspiring. They weren't just getting us to perform on the field or on the track, they were getting something else out of us that was really kind of touching a little bit more on character development, and personal development and who I was as a person and who I wanted to be as a person. And so that's really, I think when we start to really shine and make an impact on our members and on people in our gym is really when we start to move beyond CrossFit. Lifting barbells doing gymnastics, getting fit, eating the right foods, it's really it really moves into like, what kind of what kind of life do they want to build for themselves? What kind of person do they want to be in the world? Who do they want to show up and be for their families and partners and businesses and anyone that's been in the game long enough knows this, but it's not. It doesn't happen in a session. It doesn't happen in a month. Oftentimes, it doesn't happen even in a year or several years. It's a very long term, methodical, consistent process by which you can help to start to shape and mold how people think and how people again, show up in the world and interact with those around them. And so that's what CrossFit is just the vehicle through which we kind of teach these lessons. But yeah, I can As simple as like, you know, there's a hard workout and somebody does the hard workout and they complete the workout, and how they move is important. And maybe if they're, you know, if they're looking to improve their time, then maybe their time on the workout is also important. But really like, what I'm looking at as a coach is how did they approach the workout? How did they navigate the workout? And then how do they react? Maybe when something unexpected happens, or when something really, really gets hard? That is really going to challenge them? Maybe mentally and emotionally more so than physically? How do they react to that? And how do they kind of adapt and overcome to that situation?


Athan 10:36

Yeah, I think that's a guts nails it for me, too. You know, I've said this many times, and I work it into as many conversations as possible. I'm a, I'm a gym owner, who really doesn't give a shit about how much weight or how fast you run, or like, what, what real cool gymnastic movements you can do? What I care about is how you, you know, uh, you know, are you happy? Do you feel like you're contributing to the world? Do you do you feel like you're giving the effort and you have the attitude that that you want to show up with all the time, and then just being a gym owner is just, I call it like, it's like my gateway drug. It's my it's my canvas for the art. You know, that's how that's the art that I want to do. And I just choose to use fitness as the, as the, you know, the medium, you know, but I'm really trying to teach people how to attack life. The reason why I'm drawn to your work is because I I like in your messaging, you know, I follow your social media. I've seen how you you know how you guys hold yourselves. Of course, I've seen you guys in person when you're leading your your group. And I really see that in what you do. Also, it's, it's beyond fitness.


Michael 11:49

I have also seen you interact with your athletes and with your coaches. You know, we've worked together on that, on that Crosstown showdown event that we had, that was so badass. I really that was one of that was a highlight of that time of our gym career. That was really fun. You know, for those of you out there who don't know what that is, we had it was basically during, during the open several years back, we we partnered up with our gym, and Nathan's gym partnered up and we had a friendly Crosstown rivalry. Like the competition was important, but it was really more about like two gyms connecting, and being able to share in the camaraderie of competition and pushing ourselves and, and all that. So again, that was that was awesome, super, super big highlight for me and for us. Everything you just said about wanting to to help grow people beyond fitness. You know, somebody walks into your gym, and and you're not the first question you ask them isn't, you know, how are you showing up in the world? Like what kind of person do you want to be to your to your family? It's usually, you know, do you have any injuries in the past that we that we need to be aware of? Or what's your athletic background? Or what are your goals? What are you looking at? You know, do you want to get stronger? Do you want to lose weight? What what are you looking to get out of joining the gym training. And so it really is something it's it really is like a more of like an onion, where you meet the person. And then over the course of weeks and months, you get to know them a little bit more personality wise, and then beyond that, you develop relationships. And if if the relationship continues to progress, if that person sticks around, you're Jim, you you get to that later. But that is really that's the good stuff, right? And it takes a while to get there. But that really is, you know, that really is the kind of the honey. Yeah, it's it's, it's, it's not an easy job. But it's something that is completely rewarding. And I think that, you know, when I've watched you in your gym, and when I watch my coaches at our gym, there's something there there's a reason why I think people come to us and in our fitness program, and not other coaches gyms and their fitness programs. And I was thinking about it this week, maybe last week, I think it comes down to maybe authenticity, and that you just can't fake authenticity. So if you're a coach, if you're watching your coach, run a class and interact with members, and if they don't, if they don't really, actually enjoy it. And if it doesn't actually fill their cup, you're going to notice that right? It's going to become really apparent not only to you as the owner or to their meant as their mentor or the owner of the gym, but also to the members. And when you're a gym owner, and when you are passionate about being a gym owner, and when you're a coach, you're passionate about being a coach, it comes through you don't have to explain it. You don't have to try to like justify it or you know, tell people that you're passionate about it, that authenticity just speaks for itself.


Refining Purpose as a Coach


Athan 14:42

Absolutely. I think it ties into purpose. You know, you've probably seen this a lot someone who became a coach or maybe for to to distill it down a little bit becomes a trainer because, you know, they like working out or they're a great athlete or they played sports or something like that. And so they didn't really have a great idea of what else they wanted to do with their life and like, well, this is kind of what I know. So I'm going to get into, you know, coat, you know, they try to get a coaching job or a trainer job somewhere. And like you said, it's it becomes, it becomes painfully apparent when that person is when it's not what they're supposed to be doing, you know, the symptoms of that are things like burnout, you know, lack of engagement with the members, you know, just, you know, just generally being disengaged, you can kind of just see it all over them. But when it's tied to their purpose, when it's like, you know, like, this is part of who you are, and how you want what you want to give to the world. It's like, they're just on fire, you know, and you could just see it, speaking about purpose. You know, do you do you have a clearly defined purpose for you or for your gym? Or is there something that you try to lead your coaches on around purpose? I'm just curious about your perspective on on the topic. Yeah,


Michael 16:00

I, we do you know, and it's, I think it's something that we're always trying to check back in on and clearly define or redefine, as things develop. And as things change, Jessica and I have, have had the gym of or have owned the gym, since the fall of 2014. So we'll be eight years this October. And so of course, over the years, things change. Things develop, as you know, when when we opened up the gym, I was 30 years old, and I'm 38 now. So obviously, in that eight year span, I've changed as a person. Jess has changed as a person, all of our coaches have grown and matured and developed over over the years. You know, one thing that we are really, really focusing on doubling down on tripling down on two things. Number one is his community, as cliche as that might be. But number two, and this this kind of time, this could be this, we could go a couple different directions from here. But the past couple of years, have shown us a lot of things about maybe the fragility of like preconceived notions like things were a certain way. And then things shifts, and in light of that, you need to shift as well. There has to be some kind of a pivot, some kind of growth that needs to come out of that. And so I think that beyond community we are, are hyper focused on impacting the world. And that's really general and pretty, pretty vague, right, as a statement, but it comes down to the question of how can we impact the world? What can we do to contribute to the betterment of the world, I think at the end of the day, that's what you're talking about with purpose. Some people's purpose is really big right there. They're building spaceships, and they're developing new ways to travel, new goals for humankind, like on a very large scale, their actions are felt immediately all around the world. For better or for worse, you know, you have world leaders, you have big giant corporations and things like that. And so I'm not interested in being that or doing that. But what we are interested in and being and doing is, is is impacting the world by acting locally, right? So how can I, maybe it's like the ripple effect, right? So at Karhu, we want to make every single person that comes through our doors, we want to make their day better, we just want them to leave with a smile on their face, feeling like they've accomplished something in their day. And if we can do that every day to every person that comes through our doors, even if we miss some, here and there, but if we can impact. So right now we're at about 130 Members, if we can impact 130 people's lives, say it's even 100 100 people's lives in a positive manner. If they then go back to their families, and if they are now in a better state of mind, a better physical state, if they are feeling more confident about who they are, as human beings, their family life, their home life is going to be improved. If their family lives are better than when they go into the office. Or when they get to their their job, their career, their their, their passion, whatever that might be, they're going to perform better, they're going to do better. And if we can continue that kind of a bad kind of an effort, that kind of a pattern and if that pattern can spread out even to just Austin right, even just to the confines of our of our city, then we're hoping that that will be enough to start to make changes in the world so yeah, we're not going to implement anything that's going to that's going to impact the world we're not going to solve world hunger we're not going to we're not going to make everybody all of a sudden you know nation stop warring and things like that. But man, I'm not even I'm not even interested in that. I'm just interested in helping out you know, Susie over here, lose 10 pounds and become more confident with her physical capabilities.


Athan 19:58

Yeah, I mean, it's a You can't undervalue. You can't discount the power of what the if you can't even you can't measure it. But when when someone is, is just a little bit closer to their full potential, like you said, they're a little fitter, they've got a little bit of a better attitude, they've been hanging around with people who, who have positive mental, you know, mindsets, you know, you just can't measure, you know, the game because that person goes and has a conversation with their kid or they go have a conversation with their co worker or something. And if, you know, all these micro decisions that we make each day can can vacillate, you know, it's that whole ripple effect. You know, if I have a shitty attitude and have a shitty conversation with somebody today, it kind of it didn't, then that impact when that person goes, it has a conversation with someone else. And you know, so I'm 100% with you is that what I'm trying to do is just create a strong base of wellness and health in a broadest sense, so that that person can navigate their day to day life, making the better choices, having the better interaction having the the more doing the more difficult things that needed to be done. And they feel like they're capable of doing that.


Michael 21:16

Yeah, yeah, I mean, for a lot of people, they're one hour in our gym several times a week, is the hardest physical thing that they do, right? They're not they're not doing hard manual, physical labor. You know, chances are, they don't pick up anything over 100 pounds in their normal daily life. And so for them if they come in, and you know, they're taking on these, these tasks, these challenges that they won't encounter anywhere else. In life, most likely, and it's new to them. And it's scary. And but you know, what, it's it's a safe environment. In that sense. It's a it's a controlled environment to some to some extent. And so if they can start to overcome those little things in the gym, they find out that man, work just became, you know, my eight hour workday just became a whole lot easier because I, I did something this morning that I didn't even know I was capable of. So if I can do that, you know, this, this, this stack of papers at the office? Isn't that hard to get through? I just got to put my head down and go to work, you know?


Optimal Health vs Elite Fitness


Athan 22:15

Yeah. How you do anything is how you do everything. Yeah. What's your perspective on optimal health? So you know, there's, there's elite fitness, which I know you're very familiar with, you've coached a lot of elite athletes. And you you actually, I actually one of my first memories of you, not just this is just a sidebar, but one of my first memories of you before I ever actually knew you was watching you on the competition on the on the, you know, the Court of competition, yeah, competing in CrossFit. And I remember watching you and being impressed with you on a team. And so you understand what that takes as an individual. You've coached a lot of other people with that, but what I'm interested in is optimal health, helping human beings to become optimized. And I'm curious if you have a perspective or thought about that.


Michael 23:00

Yeah, I mean, optimal health is that's kind of, uh, oh, man, that's a that's kind of a tricky one. Because you could ask, and I, I've been listening to a lot of other podcasts recently, and there's been a lot of fitness, what I would call, you know, experts or influencers, people that I really look up to, and really, really respect in that in that realm. And they all seem to have slightly different, or very different meanings or definitions or interpretations of what it would mean to be optimally healthy. And I think that, you know, Jessica and I have been brainstorming, we have, we have a little project in the works, where we're going to try to move our what we do in the gym at Karhu. Online, like we have an OT we have an in person community here in Austin, our gym community, and we want to be able to share that with more people. So we're trying to, we're trying to figure out a way that we can take that online, and share that with more people outside of just our local gym community. And I think in our, in our discussions, we were we were talking about our core values and our core tenets and the things that we that we hold dear that we want to be able to share with with the world. And the what we came up with was something that we were calling our lifestyle triad, which is mental, physical, emotional. And that's not necessarily groundbreaking or new. A lot of people have used that and phrase that in different ways. But we believe that if you are physically fit, and mentally stable or mentally well, and if you're an emotionally healthy as well, that that you're going to be a better human being. So what does that look like? How do we clearly define that? Or how do we put metrics or markers on that? That's really difficult. I don't know if I have a clear answer there. But I think that it starts with the physical, mental, emotional, and the physical is one of the easier ones to take care of. Right. You come in the gym and you work out and some workouts are hard or some workouts are short, some are medium, some are long. Sometimes you lift heavy things. And sometimes you do bodyweight exercises and sometimes you are very much focused on, on your, your cardiovascular cardio respiratory systems. And if you can get all of those tuned in a little bit and dialed up, then you're going to be a better human. Mentally, you have to be able to deal with stress you have to be able to deal with, because we're never going to be able to eliminate stress. And I, I think that that's something that a lot of people try to do is they try to eliminate stress from their lives. So they everything that stresses them out, they, they cut it out, or they they unfollow the person that has annoyed them, you know, triggered them on a social media platform. And they, they, they they stopped doing the things that are just mentally exhausting. And so and then that's good to an extent, right, you don't want to always be doing things that you don't enjoy, or that are mentally draining without any kind of redeeming value or purpose behind them. But we think that we're trying to make more resilient human beings by being able to manage stress and take that and use it purposefully towards your, towards your end goal towards your end state and then emotionally, right. So being able to deal with hardship, the passing of a loved one, Rocky, Rocky relationships, you know, emotional issues that come up with in friendships right from time to time. So I think to be an optimized human being an optimized human being is one that has a thriving mental, physical and emotional kind of triad or trifecta.




Athan 26:35

Yeah, I love that. And, and I like again, like, I think, the sign of a young or emerging leader or a coach or something like our people who try to create new sexy things or try to, you know, go into these, like, really, like advanced, you know, advanced movements or advanced theories. But I think the best, the most elite people in the world, master the basics, they're just really good. They're uncommonly good at doing common things. And I And that's and what you're talking about, these are things that obviously, these are baseline this is we're talking Maslow's hierarchy of needs, you know, baseline stuff that we've got to nail you've got it nailed down before you're going to try and do anything better, bigger or, or more advanced than that. And and so I love that that's something that you guys are trying to help your people you know, you know, things like, hopefully your your new growing online community, but also the people that you're working with in person. You know, I, I'm curious about you, you mentioned earlier on about you guys have like you said chip values you guys had like values of your of your organization or something like that. Do you? Are those real clearly defined for you guys? And something you guys talk about often? Or is that something you guys still working on? Also?


Michael 27:58

No, we've again, we've we define them. We defined them when we open the gym in 2014. We wrote them down, it's not something we've been meaning to get them kind of up on our wall so that they would be visible to to the gym. And they they've morphed a little bit, you know, we I don't really like that word, we think that this other word would describe would kind of encapsulate vac and other things. So they've definitely changed. We share them internally with our members. Not not not frequently, but frequently enough. You know, we send out a monthly newsletter at the beginning of every month. And in each newsletter, each newsletter just kind of got a different tilt toward to it. Some months or more about just general housekeeping stuff like Hey, y'all don't forget to you know, clean up your equipment. When you're done. A lot of stuff was left out last week, or Hey, y'all, you know, reminder, we have a social coming up this weekend. Others are more focused on kind of bigger picture. Bigger Picture items, right? Some we have, every once or every, every about six to eight weeks, we'll put out a programming newsletter where we talk about programming and what the programming what the intention is behind it, what they're going to expect to see in the gym, how they should expect to feel how they should navigate, training, recovery, all that. And then still other newsletters are about like, Hey, y'all, you know, we haven't talked about this in a while we have a lot of newer members in the gym right now. So we just want to break down for y'all. You know, what, what we believe in, you know, how we do things, why we do things, you know why you won't see this in the gym? Why? Why we do a team break at the end of every session. And it really just goes back to the culture of the gym and things that we want to see, you know, hey guys, if you have a problem with another member, you don't need to talk about that person behind their back. You need to come directly either to that person and you know, be an adult and talk about it and address the issue and resolve it. Or you know, the second best option would be to come to a coach or an owner and Bring the issue up to them and let them handle that. But there's no you know, there's no room for, for talking behind people's backs. There's no reason for for, for pettiness or for you know clicky behavior. So we definitely have those things that we really try to make very explicit to our members, because it makes the gym atmosphere better. Everybody appreciates it. They appreciate the transparency. They appreciate the straightforwardness and the honesty. And those are those are two of our biggest things. Two of our biggest core values, integrity, transparency, and honesty. I think that was three but I said it was two but it was three,


Athan 30:34

three. Well, I love that. And I love the fact that you make the effort to communicate it because it doesn't well, it doesn't matter how well you've defined it, it doesn't matter even how well you're applying it behind the scenes. If Pete if you haven't been able to articulate and communicate it to your, to the to your key stakeholders. And in your case, it might be your coaches, it might be your your members and whomever else you consider to be your stakeholders. But the communication key is I mean, the community communication part is absolutely key. You know, I don't you know, I think as a business owner, which is what I was going to talk about earlier, you know, we all got into coaching for some reason. But then so that make that that made us a tactician. And hopefully, like I mentioned, we realize that it is a part of our purpose to be a coach and a teacher and a mentor there. So there's doing that at a certain level. And then there's like having to be a business owner that is overall responsible for the delivery of said, you know, that being a service, you know, that being a deliverable. And, and business, I'm sure you found this to be true that just because you're a great coach doesn't mean that you're a great business owner, not at all. So I'm kind of curious about not at all I've, I've you know, and so again, I'm a huge proponent of like, okay, you will figure out every problem that you possibly you, and that is out there, if you're, if you're engaged in the issue for the right reasons, like, you know, I, I've made every mistake that you can possibly make as a as a business owner, but I stayed in the fight because I loved what I was doing, because I didn't care that I messed up, or, you know, it just didn't matter, I still felt good about the work I was doing. So I'm curious about your perspectives on you know, taking your career to another level of being a small business owner, and I know you've got a partner or maybe multiple partners. So So I want to talk about business ownership a little bit,


Business Ownership


Michael 32:35

two of the better pieces of advice I got when I was when I first found CrossFit and I was like, I want to coach, I want to be a coach because the coaches were the people that I really looked up to. And you know, they were the badass is and they had everything going on. And one of one piece of advice that I received was, you know, don't get into coaching, because you like working out, you know, like don't don't transition from from athlete and member to coach because you enjoy spending time at the gym, because who doesn't enjoy spending time at the gym, especially when you're in that kind of like honeymoon phase of like learning CrossFit. You know, our members are the most passionate ones in the building, because it's it's so new, and it's so awesome. And they haven't, they haven't gone through any of those kind of like really, you know, hard plateaus. And then similarly, it was like, Don't become a gym owner. Just because you really love coaching. Like there's difference between there's a difference between being a really good worker and being a really good manager. And there's, there's a difference between being a really good manager and an owner. So each step along the way, or each of those transitions from athlete or member to coach and then from coach to business owner comes with its own set of own set of difficulties, own set of circumstances. And the skill sets that you have, as an athlete are not the same ones that you need to be a coach and you could be the best athlete in the world. And I'm sure you know, we've seen this you know, over the course of the history of CrossFit but somebody that's a really great athlete then starts doing coaching and programming. And you know, they're not good coaches and programmers maybe because they don't understand like the art or the science of programming and they don't make good coaches because they're not great with people. They're really good at doing stuff like they can snatch and they can walk on their hands 100 yards without stopping but you know when it comes to getting inside the head of their athletes or when it comes to understanding where persons coming from emotionally they have no idea maybe they don't have enough empathy maybe they haven't practiced again Enough Enough Enough communication interpersonal communication, so they just don't it doesn't pan out so my you know, personally my journey from from athlete to coach was, I feel like it was a great one because I really, again, I enjoyed coaching and I do enjoy coaching is still one of my my favorite thing to do. And I enjoy hanging out with people I enjoy working with people I enjoy developing people, all of our coaches do. And I think again, maybe that's one of the reasons why I think we have a special, a special place in Karhu. From Coach to, to gym owner was a whole different thing. Because again, I had had coaching experience in the past, even though it wasn't coaching CrossFit. But moving, moving from a coach into starting a starting a business, opening up a business that is, you know, almost entirely dependent upon myself and the other, the other people that, that started the gym with me, was a whole different thing. And so I like you, I feel like I've made every mistake under the sun that I could have possibly made. But that's not true. Because I know, I'll still make more mistakes, you know, this week, and next month and next year, so I'm ready for that. But like we tell our athletes, it's not about the, it's not about making mistakes, because everybody's gonna, if you're doing life correctly, then you are going to make mistakes, it's really about how you can learn from those mistakes and, and not repeat them in the future or improve, you know, improve upon your, your, your person yourself, so that you can maybe do better the next time. So you know, everything from I mean, I've never owned a business before. I had never started a gym before. I had never had to deal with contractors contracts, I had never had to manage people or manage coaches in the way that I was when we when we started the gym and even up to this day. And that's a different thing to write. Because when you are when you start something with a group of friends or with people that are your peers will say, it's really hard to make that transition from friend and peer to like, Okay, now I'm the boss, and you're the employee, or now like, I own the gym, and you're a person that works at the gym. That's a really tricky thing to navigate. And I think one of the biggest things that I had to deal with was my own ego and my own.


Michael 37:17

Again, my own like kind of sense of self, and maybe sense of purpose. I think that at times it was maybe not misguided or maybe misguided, but maybe misinformed, I thought I was doing the right things because of XY and Z. But really, you know, now that I have now that I'm a little bit older, and I have a little bit more experience and 2020 hindsight vision, I look back on some of the things I did and some of the ways that I was and I was like, Man, what a dick. What an idiot, you know, like, and I think, again, that's not I can criticize myself, but I think that that's part of gross. I think that that's just part of gross, you look on I look at the way I was when I was 18 You know, growing up, and I'm like, Damn, what an idiot, you know, did some real dumb shit. But again, the doing of that dumb shit helped me realize that it wasn't the right things, or the right way the right things to do or the right way of being. And so it helped me grow into the person I am today.


Athan 38:11

You know, you got to have some compassion for that young Michael, you know, he was doing the best that he could with what he knew how to do then. And now you know better and so you do different things. But, you know, it's, you know, that's yeah, like you said, it's all part of the process. And I think that's the fun part of, of being a you know, being a gym owner or being a coach too, is that you kind of get to you have some wisdom because you've done some stuff, and you've got some experience. And you can kind of see things for people before they can see them. And you can kind of say, Hey, let me tell you, let me tell let me explain this to you, or this is what I'm seeing from you. Let me let me just tell you what my experience with that was. And you know, and and, you know, you can help maybe help prevent people, either one from making a mistake, or you can at least give them a safe place to make that same mistake. Because they need to be because there's no other way to learn a particular lesson than than making that mistake.


Michael 39:05

Yeah. And I think that again, the older that I'm getting, the more experience that I'm getting day after day, year after year. I think the the second thing that you said their rings more true for me, both with athletes and also you know, people that that we are kind of mentoring and things like that is that with athletes for example, there's there's always these cycles of athletes. And you can almost like you could almost plot it out on on like a timeline like in the first you know, zero to six months, this is what is going to happen. This is how the person is going to be in the six to 12 months. So like with athletes, I see this thing where they always they want to do all the things all the time. They're not great at CrossFit, they have a lot of holes. So instead of following a program, they just want to like shotguns, you know, scattered shoot all over the place. I need to lift every day I need to run every day. I need to do double unders every day. Oh, I definitely need to rope climb every day. And so it ends up being this like garbled mess, because they are. So they're so determined and headstrong, and that's great. That's what you want an athlete, and you can't do anything, but to kind of explain to them the best you can, what you think and what you believe. And, you know, let them know that you're going to support them. But then, you know, let them let them touch the hot stove, like, hey, the stove is hot. And they're like, yeah, yeah, yeah, I got it, and then they touch the stove. And it's like, shit, that was hot. And there's no other way. Like we, you know, you could, you could explain it until the until the cows come home, they're not going to get it until they do it for themselves. And that goes for, you know, people that we've mentored and coaches that we've had along the way as well. So at this point, in our, in the gym, in the life of our gym, I think that we're kind of leaning more towards that, like providing, providing, I don't like the word safe space, but I don't think we're using in that context, but providing a place where it is acceptable, to try things and to fail, and try things and succeed. And learn from both of those different situations. And hopefully, you know, again, we can provide as much guidance and wisdom as we can, but at the end of the day, we want people to to be comfortable failing and to fail in a way that doesn't hurt them in any kind of serious manner. And that also provides some kind of feedback that leads to their overall improvement.


Athan 41:23

Yeah, that feedback is huge. You know, because if you just keep failing, and you you don't know, you're not getting the feedback that it takes to kind of learn the lesson, because we have one of our gym values is fail often. And really, that's our growth, that's what I consider to be our growth value. Right? Like, if you're not stretching yourself, if you're not getting a little uncomfortable, if you're not risking failure, are you You know, you're probably not growing, and, and stretching yourself and so, so yeah, like having that, that place where it's totally fine. In fact, it's a part of the culture, that to fail. And in fact, if you're not failing, you know, it may be it's kind of frowned upon a little bit. Like, if you're not out there, like kind of fall flat on your face. It's like, Whoa, are you are you even try, you know, because so many people will only participate in things that they know, they can win at. Oh, yeah. And that's not that's not really, that's not a great way to go through life. I personally, I don't think, you know,


Michael 42:19

yeah, and we all get in those spots we have, there's, there's a handful of kind of newer people in the gym right now. And that is kind of attitude, they're, they're, they're high performers, in just about every aspect of their lives, you know, they, they, they are financially well off. They have high, you know, powerful positions in their, in their, in their industries in their careers. You know, they're, they're winning on all fronts, but it's because they're kind of in the zone of things, they're in their wheelhouse, they're in the zone of things that they have been doing for a long time, they understand and know how to do well. And it's also fun, because I mean, shit when you're winning, and you're good at something that's fun. So when they come in the gym, and all of a sudden, it's a bunch of stuff that is that is not in their wheelhouse, that that challenges that makes them look silly, or makes them look bad. And, you know, whatever bad is they take it real hard. And so I think those people, there's the heart, you know, you know, this is their, the harder ones to develop. But I think that once you know, they, they kind of go back from becoming an expert or becoming a master. And it takes them a little while to put themselves back in that kind of student or beginner mindset. But I think that once they realize that it's okay, that it's just, it's okay to start over. It's okay to be a beginner, it's okay to suck at something, they start really having fun. And that's when like, that's when, like, you know, they become leaders in the gym. And that's when they become the the biggest proponents of what we're doing. Yeah,


Athan 43:46

you said something along the lines of like being the master and I think what keeps someone what allows someone to continuously be the master and not get kind of you know, is is allowing yourself as much as possible to force yourself to be the novice to force yourself to be the student to push you know, so that you can continuously master things and and understand even if, like, for example, if I'm a if I'm a financial advisor, and that's what I make all my money doing, you know, maybe I'm the master at that, but going over and doing something like Brazilian jujitsu or CrossFit or something like that, where I'm a complete novice gives me perspectives and learnings and ways to integrate into still being that financial advisor and and honing and mastering my craft there


Michael 44:35

you know, 100% Professional Student Yep.


Daily Habits for Expressing Your Best Self


Athan 44:39

So what we're really talking about here I mean, we've is about habits right I think what we're it's coming down it's like are you are people doing things consistently do certain behavior certain acts consistently, so that they can become like we mentioned a more optimal human or something like that. And I'm curious, do you have things they do you have habits that you try to do daily or habits that you coach people to do daily, you know, to be closer to their most full self or their most Express self or their best self.


Michael 45:11

Personally, I try to be prepared, and I try to make preparation as much of a habit as as possible, right. And so there's some things, like, Tell me about that. Yeah, so for example, like this podcast, like, you know, you and I had communicated beforehand, and, you know, you told me, it was gonna be kind of open ended, we were just gonna let it go were wet. So I didn't feel the need to really prepare for this podcast. Because I mean, you're we're gonna talk about stuff. And it should be stuff that I'm pretty familiar with. If I'm not familiar with, you know, with my own business and coaching, then that's a problem. But so it was like, it was pretty easy to prepare for this podcast, in that sense, because there wasn't much that I needed to do outside of just show up and be myself and you'll be yourself. But when it comes to like the business, for example, I like to use my weekends as specifically Sundays, as a day where, where I kind of like set myself up for the week. So on Sundays, I will try to as best as possible, like, get up, clean the house, put away all my things. If there was anything that got you know, dirty or left out over the course of the week or weekend, I'm going to put that you know back where it goes so that I know where it is, on Monday morning, do all my laundry, I mean, just to go down the list of things that that you know you do to keep your keep your house clean and tidy in order. And then I also take Sunday, and if I haven't finished the programming for the week, I'll finish the programming. You know, we'll go I'll kind of go over what I'm going to be doing on Monday, we have our staff meeting on Monday. So I think about what we're going to be talking about at our staff meeting on Monday. And so I basically just have like this list of things that I do that I try to do every single Sunday, or at least have done by Sunday. So that Monday morning, when the alarm clock goes off, and I put my feet on the ground, I'm getting out of bed, I already know exactly what I'm doing. I know you know, I need to get in the shower, I need to make my coffee, I need to let the dog outside, it sets me up. And I feel confident getting into getting into the week, knowing that I have all my ducks in a row and that everything is lined up for me already. Compared to you know, there's there's, you know, every odd weekend where I won't have time on the weekend, or we travel out of town, or we just have a lot going on, I'm late and not able to get to those things. And so then Sunday night, I'm scrambling, and then that translates into Monday morning. And I'm already starting out the week on my back foot, right? Don't have my notes prepared. I'm not sure what we're going to talk about at staff meeting, I don't know what I need to do this week in the gym, to help move the gym forward and progress the business. And so those are the harder weeks is when I don't don't take the time to prepare for gym members. I think it's it depends on the it depends on the member, right? For somebody that's new in the gym, the habits that we are trying to instill in our newer members are things like consistency, just like show up to the gym three times a week, if you can show up to the gym three times a week, for the next three months, your life is gonna change. So preaching consistency, we really try to go after the low hanging fruit. So I like what you something you mentioned earlier that kind of resonated with me, which is that, you know, it's kind of like the mark of a novice or beginner coach to try to go to the most complicated complex theories on you know, strength and conditioning and health and wellness, instead of just getting the low hanging fruit, right, so instead of talking about like, hey, maybe, you know, if we can get you to sleep eight hours a night, your life's gonna improve. And instead of just trying to get someone to sleep eight hours a night, they start talking about, you know, different drugs they can take to help sleep better. Or they talk about you know, complex theories on sleep. And if you just do if you take a nap in the afternoon, and then you can do four hours a night and then it's not that bad. And it's like no man, just like just try to get solid eight hours of sleep consistently. You know, drink more water, like low hanging fruit, just how much do you drink right now? Oh, you don't drink any wine or you drink one glass a day. Let's try to get four glasses a day just making those like incremental changes that into making big impacts. Instead of going immediately to the super complex, you know, oh, we need to get you on to a days and you need to be intermittent fasting and you need to cycle on and off, you know, vitamin D or whatever it is. So yeah, just preaching consistency and the basics and the low hanging fruit.


Athan 49:35

Yeah, I love that consistency is something that I'm constantly preaching. Also, I believe that it overcomes all, you know, persistence and consistency overcomes everything. I don't care what your problem is. I don't care what you're doing. If you just keep showing up. You you will eventually overcome that particular challenge that that, you know, it's just it's a battle of wills almost literally. And so I love that you get you're helping people to do that. And yeah, and and keep things simple, you know, like you said, you know, it's so easy to say, Oh, here's this stack of supplements you should be taking, and you need to learn how to you need to learn how to squat snatch, you know, like these brand new people, you know, it's like, wait, no, can we just like teach you how to, you know, squat properly? Or how to keep your, you know how to keep your spine neutral? You know, let's just, like, start there for a second before we start jumping into all this other stuff. And I'm guilty of all of that. I mean, I've made every single coaching. Yeah, you know, it's because, you know, like, you mentioned ego earlier. And that's a big one for me. I, I originally, I can say this with confidence now, because I have changed since then. But I originally started the gym, to show everybody else like how how smart and capable and, you know, cool I was, you know, that I could start this this business and show everybody what I knew. And that's just a horrible way, you know, I wasn't there. I honestly, I think I gave lip service to wanting to actually contribute and offer something to the world. Like, I think I did want that under the surface. But I if I'm being honest, now I know that I wanted to be in the spotlight, I wanted to show everybody all these complex, difficult things that I knew and could teach. But what I learned later on is that when I what I help people do basic things really well. And I take myself out of the like, like trying to take myself out of it completely. That figs, figs go a lot, a lot better. And like I said, with all that it's just consistency, it's just keep showing up, you know?


Michael 51:46

Yeah, I think, to your point, I, I, I feel like I had a similar experience where I was paying lip service to like, Oh, I just want to help other people. And, and I think that that, again, is the mark of a maybe a younger or a more undeveloped, human. You know, I think that there's some level of ego in all of us, for example, I think, you know, as much as I've grown and developed today, there's something that I still get out of being the person at the front of the class, right, like, there is something that I am getting, or else I wouldn't do it, right. There's something that I'm getting, whether it's attention, or whether it's recognition, or whatever the thing is, I'm still getting something from my members. And from being a coach, and from being a gym owner. And from all these things, I'm still getting something out of that, I think that the difference is, and I think this is what you're getting at is that you you can like you can overcome that when you start to give more than you take. So like if I'm receiving something from my members, then the way to to overcome that is to give back more to them to influence the or to give them more value than what they're giving me. And I think that goes for a lot of different professions. I think that, you know, comedians, for example, I think that they definitely get something out of being on a stage and having you know, people laugh at their jokes, you know, or else they wouldn't do it. I mean, that's one of the probably the most difficult, you know, emotionally draining jobs out there. Firefighters and policemen and all different walks of life, doctors and lawyers, they're all getting something that feeds like some kind of inner primal ego, and that it's not okay, when they're doing it just for that, right. But I think it becomes a little bit more acceptable, or maybe even, okay, when you can recognize that and understand that, but then also kind of flip it on its head and say, hey, you know what, I'm getting something out of this, it fills my cup in some way. But I'm going to give back, you know, three times four times what I'm getting to my people, you know, the comedian that is there to actually make people laugh to make their lives better is the comedian that's doing it, right. The person that is, you know, a firefighter that's doing it to actually, you know, serve the community is doing it better than the firefighter that's doing it to get you know, some kind of recognition or, or badge or, or metal or something like that. So, yeah, so I think it's within all of us, but I think there is a way to kind of overcome that.


Athan 54:20

Yeah, I think in the the problem is, is that it's hard to tell from Yeah, I guess you mentioned at the very, very beginning of this conversation, you it's it's plain to see when someone's not being their authentic, you know, full self. But sometimes it's hard also, you know, it's like the guy who's up there coaching in front of a class. Because for, you know, big ego driven wants it to be about him or her. It's sometimes sometimes they, you know, coach and teach the same as the other person who's doing it just to give and all that stuff. And so the only person who can really identify that Is is for themself, you know, you have to be, you know, be willing to be introspective. Ask yourself the hard questions and and say, am I am I doing this for the right reason? And am I doing this to be my best, you know, my best possible self, in contribution have something bigger than me. And, and I'm a big I'm big on helping people to find that thing. Like, I don't care if you're, you know the thing, you know, rocket scientist or brain surgeon or whatever, if you're doing that job and you hate it, and you don't feel like you're, it's a part of like who you are and what you want to be given to the world, then I know it would be hard, but you got to switch gears, you got to go find that thing that actually does make you feel like you're giving more than you're you're taking? Yeah, you know? Absolutely. Okay, well, was there anything? So you talked about preparation, and I know that to be true about you? I think how organized you guys are at your gym and with your, your programming is clear and apparent. Was there anything that you kind of hoped that I'd asked you about or anything that you wanted to talk about on this show? When you were thinking about


Michael 56:13

it? Now, like I said, like I don't think I had anything specifically that I wanted to talk about. I wanted to catch up with you see how you're How are you doing? What are what do you have going on? Because I know that you had since since the last time you know, we went to we went to Andy's Andy's bachelor party that was years ago. What what is Athan up to? Just because I want to know, and I'm sure the listeners for those who are not as familiar with you. What are you up to? I know that you sold one of your gyms. I know that you're out in Bastrop now, what are you up to?


Athan 56:46

Yeah, I yeah, I live out in Bastrop. Now, I still have the gym that's out here in Bastrop, which is strive strength conditioning, I no longer own fortitude, strength conditioning, which we we didn't sell it we actually gotcha, stay down. Okay, it. Yeah. We, it's, again, speak about growth and like failing, right, like I you know, that's I learned a ton to that process. And with I think, you know, I just always thought that that, you know, fortitude was always just gonna, that was like my first gym, it was the one that was the most stable, it was the one that like was kind of like my anchor ship. Yeah, you know, and so, you know, when I been like really honest, and like, looking back on how things rolled out, like I I made a lot of assumptions that turned out to be false. You know, like, when COVID happened, you know, I just really thought like, everything, everything was going to be fine. We've been doing all the right things. We're doing it for all the right reasons. And edits kept, you know, our numbers were declining and declining and declining. But I always just had this thing. It's like, oh, we're gonna be fine. Yeah, you know, this thing is going to recover. I got activated on and still am. I'm actually so spent in terms of like, what am I doing right now? I got activated on active duty orders for the National Guard in March of 2020. Oh, I've been on active duty every since then. Well, yeah. So in terms of how COVID impacts different people, people's lives differently, you know, I, in some ways, don't own my own life, the military gets to tell me where I go and don't go and all that other stuff. And so. So with that being said, I bring that up, because I didn't have that. I thought that you'd have the time, that's a lie. I didn't give the time to fortitude that, that it needed because I was activated and doing everything else. And, and it failed. It failed as a business. It ended up just going down and down. And even when I knew, like, hey, this isn't sustainable. I didn't take a lot of great action to overcome that. Because I just had an ego about it. I mean, the truth of the matter is, is I just thought, No, this is your COVID is going to end it's going to be it's going to be over no time. This isn't going to be something we're even talking about that. Clearly. We're still in the midst of it. Yeah, you know, so. So that's what happened with fortitude. It ended up failing as a business. Looking back now, I mean, it was what it is one of the hardest things that I ever had to go through. I mean, it's like, you know, it's like a child. You know, it's like a child it is I don't want to say that because that's that's probably not fair. But but it was something that I had built from the ground up something I cared about deeply about hundreds of people out. I mean, over time, 1000s of people that I had served and had relationships with, and it's, it's, it's gone now, you know, and so that was really hard, but I grew up so grateful for the experience now and that I've learned a lot from that I building. So out here at Bastrop I'm building this With called the Bastrop fitness project, it's I bought a property and I'm building this big commercial retail space, that's going to be what I'm calling the hub of health and wellness. Or sometimes when I'm trying to be cute, I call it the food court of health and wellness. Yeah. But it's kind of like you go in there and it's it's comprehensive in terms of, you know, there's a there's, there's going to be a recovery spine there, which will have hot and cold contrast therapies and, and compression therapy and massage therapist, and there's going to be a yoga and hot yoga, there's a spot to drop your kids off in there. So while you're being healthy, those there's a playscape area to drop the kids. And of course, there's a strength conditioning facility in there and a cafe, all that other stuff. So that's being built right now it should open up in like April or May or something like that. And that's big data spit up. Oh, it's so frustrating. I've never, I've never built a building or developed a property or anything before. It's honestly been very frustrating. I've learned a ton through that also. But I think that's the that's the 30,000 foot view of what I've what I've got going on. Yeah, you know,


Michael 1:01:16

yeah, that's great. I mean, good luck with all that I, I don't I also do not have any experience developing a property or building anything like that from the ground up in terms of like physical structures, but we did have our gym renovated when we moved from our first to our second property. And we renovated the gym a little bit because we needed to, to move in. And that one experience right there working with the contractors and the construction and the demolition has has been enough to turn me off from it for you know, the foreseeable future. So I can only imagine what you're going through



COVID’s Effect on the Service Industry


Athan 1:01:48

bad contractors and subcontractors. It's nuts. It's it's it's a racket. Yeah, crazy. I mean, we've had like, H back and plumbing guys or teams, I got business like completely ghost us. Oh, yeah. Not just not show up. You know, and I don't know how how people operate like that, I let me ask you this, because this is this is, you know, just have you felt like during, since COVID is started that, that serve the service industry, customer service, things like that has just like plummeted. Down. You know, I feel like everyone, like almost every industry, the level of service and professionalism has just dropped down. And I've see a correlation with with COVID. But maybe I'm just making that up in my head. Is that something that you've noticed? No, I've


Michael 1:02:43

definitely noticed that. And I think I think there's a lot a lot of different reasons to that. I think, you know, some are preventable, or some are some are more workable than others. Like, for example, I think, you know, number one, I think that businesses are running around kind of, with their heads cut off like chickens, right? They don't know what direction to focus on. They don't know what to focus on. They don't, you know, the infamous supply chain issues. That seems to be the excuse for everything that's going on right now is like supply chain. So that's a lot of that's unavoidable. I think that there's a shortage of labor. For again, lots of different reasons. So I think I think, you know, everything from airlines, I mean, Sarah and I were supposed to go to her cousin's wedding last week in Las Vegas. And we weren't able to because, well, first, there was the ice storm that came through middle the week. And then our one of our flights got canceled because of that. And then so we, we were going to go the next day. And by the way, when we got to the airport, they delayed our flight by two hours because the plane was ready to go. But they were missing two flight attendants. We needed five to fly and they only had three. And so they waited and waited and waited, and they couldn't get ahold of to two available flight attendants. So they canceled the flight again. So it was like, Well, you know, not anything that we can do as customers except for, you know, complainer, you know, not fly again with him. But so I think that there's like there's some employment issues. I think that there are supply chain issues. I think that all of that contributes to kind of a diminished customer experience. One of our favorite restaurants we went to last night here in Austin. We they used to have a really nice brunch on Sunday that we would go to regularly. And we asked them, you know why they hadn't brought it back yet. And the guy basically told us like, we don't have enough food to feed anyone like we're running out of food tonight as you're sitting here at your table, like we're running out of food. We don't have the same like wines on the list or beers that are coming in. So like we can't it's not that we don't want to it's just like we literally can't we don't have enough product to give the to give to the the demand that is there. I think that's part of it. I think the other part of it is that a lot of people in the service industry are For better or for worse, are fed up with working conditions. And again, some some places are better working conditions than others. Some of that some of those gripes are I think, justified, while others are kind of not right. Like, I think that, and I've talked about this with several other people, but like, there's one thing is to say, you know, I, I'm not I'm not getting paid what I what I deserve. But there's another thing to say like, you know, base like, hold somebody hostage, like, you know, if you're a waiter at a restaurant, you know, there's only so much that you can get paid before it's like, you know, well, maybe this if you, if you want, you know, if you want to bring home a million dollars a year, maybe the service, maybe waiting tables isn't isn't the best job for you. So I think that there's a lot of different things going on there. But I think I do agree that, in general, customer service across the board, and many different industries has taken a bit of a hit. And I think that'll come back. I hope it comes back, you know, to two levels where we've, we've, we've we've had before, but I think that a lot of things will need to change and, and we're gonna have to work through some, maybe some societal issues. So that that can be the case.


Athan 1:06:07

Yeah, I've said from the beginning, with something like this with a as disruptive as this, that something a lot of great. You know, amazing things are gonna come out of it, it's going to be a growing period, it's going to be the innovation is going to has already come about, but probably even more so. So I'm kind of curious to see like, what the next five years are, you know, I'll be studying, you know, what this time has produced for the future? Yeah. So I just I guess that Yeah, I think the customer service thing is just one a growing pain that we're going through right now. But yeah, I agree. Awesome. Well, tell the listeners how they can, where they can follow you where they can keep up with what you've got going on. Yeah, so


Michael 1:06:56

the gym, you can follow on Instagram. It's at Karhu strength. Our Facebook page got hacked, and we don't have that anymore. So don't look for us on Facebook. Personally, my personal Instagram handle is at coach Winchester. And then we have our new instagram handle, which is going to be linked to our new online project, which is going to be Karhu method at Karhu method. So there's nothing much there right now. But it will, we'll be rolling that out in the months to come.


Athan 1:07:28

I can't wait to see what comes out of that. I know you guys are gonna create you everything you guys do is high quality. So I'm excited to see that project come to life also.


Michael 1:07:36

Thanks a lot. Appreciate that.


Athan 1:07:38

Well, awesome. Well, thanks for being on the show. As always, you know, I learned from you today. You taught me today. And I deeply appreciate that. And I hope that everyone listening, got something out of it. And yeah, I just appreciate you for being on the show, man.


Michael 1:07:55

Thanks, Nathan. I appreciate it as well. You and I've been friends for a while now in a lot of different ways. And I value your friendship and I definitely look up to you as someone in the industry that that is crushing it and that I look to aspire to. So good luck with everything and look forward to our next beer together.


Athan 1:08:14

I'm so grateful that you joined us for this episode of doing the work podcast. Providing you with value is why I do this and I hope you got something out of this episode that you can put into action into your life. If you enjoyed listening to this episode, please share this episode with your friends and family who are looking to level up in life. Sign up for our email list at WWW dot doing work podcast.com to receive special offers and discounts from our sponsors. subscribe to the podcast on Spotify, YouTube, Amazon and anywhere podcasts are hosted. Thanks again for joining the doing the word podcast and we'll see you on the next episode.


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