Michelle Basnett | CrossFit Games Bound

Sevan Matossian (00:01):

Bam. We’re live. I got a new Tupac. This thing’s kind of crazy. It’s like heavy. It’s got weight to it. And that makes me happy. I like it. Uh, nose It is Tupac, right? It came in the mail. Actually. It didn’t come. It didn’t come. Totally. Um, it didn’t come totally in the mail. How’d it get here? Y you know, I think Justin Madera’s mom brought this to me from someone, uh, the real OG of podcasting. Thank you, Sevan, for the quality content that stirs thoughts and splits sides. Oh, I think that means, makes people laugh. I like that. Oh my God. Where’s the man bun? A good point. I’ll get that up in a minute. Hey, someone, the reason why I came on early, um, that’s a good pride shirt. Thank you. Uh, someone said, where’s Thomas said something? Thomas Hopper. Thaysen Thaysen Hopper. Just from past experience. I doubt she shows. What are you talking about?


This chick’s good. Michelle Bass Basse. She’s good. Why wouldn’t she? What, what would be the deal? Why wouldn’t she show? Almost everyone shows. I’m trying to think. The only people, uh, who can get a little, have gotten squirrely. Uh, maybe Sarah Sigmund’s daughter. Um, of course the great Danielle, Brandon. Um, but all cr I, I don’t know. All crazy respectful. Oh, much better. It’s weird being in here. I’ve gotten spoiled by these headphones. They kind of make the world go away. Eric, what’s up dude? Good morning. I text you back this morning. Um, it’s funny, I just walked up and I saw the text on my computer right here. I’ve been a little outta commiss yesterday. I was in a weird mood. Not like bad or good, just like, um, I was just turning off. Went to bed early, nine 30. I slept from nine 30 to, uh, 6:00 AM which is just crazy for me. That’s like, uh, two and a half plus six is eight and a half. Hi, Michelle.

Michelle Basnett (02:14):

Hi. How are you?

Sevan Matossian (02:17):

I’m good. I was doing simple math. I was doing 2.5 plus six is eight and a half.

Michelle Basnett (02:25):

Yes, that is correct.

Sevan Matossian (02:26):

Yeah. Consensus. <laugh> of eight hours last night. I mean, not really. Do you ever sleep through the entire night? Like you, you lay down on the pillow and you wake up and you’re like, oh, the, the whole night passed.

Michelle Basnett (02:40):

Is that enough? Yeah, I do that sometimes.

Sevan Matossian (02:43):

How often?

Michelle Basnett (02:44):

It’s nice.

Sevan Matossian (02:45):

Um, no pee most, no turning over. I sleep like a rock. No sore shoulder. Okay. No, I mean, like, literally like, yeah. Oh,

Michelle Basnett (02:54):

That’s fair. I do pee a lot, so I only get those types of nights where it’s like straight through, maybe like once a week.

Sevan Matossian (03:00):

Oh, that’s still better than me. I cannot remember in the last 10 years having one of those.

Michelle Basnett (03:07):

That’s a bummer. Yeah. Do you know why? Uh,

Sevan Matossian (03:09):

Mostly shoulder, shoulder and, uh, mostly shoulder shit. I usually wake up or back, like my sho not that it hurts, it’s just like my shoulder or my back will wake me up. Like, Hey, you gotta move.

Michelle Basnett (03:22):

Do you like sleep funny? Do you like sleep in a funny position?

Sevan Matossian (03:25):

No, I do the, you know, fetal position, pillow between the legs. I pur, I

Michelle Basnett (03:29):

Guess. Yeah, <laugh>. Solid <laugh>. Yeah. I do like the pillow between the legs. That’s one of my favorites. Or I’ll sleep like face down and like leg up and like face in the pillow. You know?

Sevan Matossian (03:42):

You do, you still, you still sleep on your stomach?

Michelle Basnett (03:47):

Yeah. I think it’s bad too. I feel like I need to switch that to like, sleeping on my back. Cause I’m pretty sure it’s like not good for you.

Sevan Matossian (03:52):

I trained myself. I, in, in my, I don’t know, in, I wanna say it was my late twenties, but maybe my thirties. I decided that I didn’t want to go to sleep anymore. That I wanted to see what happened. I wanted to see what happened when I fell asleep. Right? Like where do I go? So then I started sleeping on my back to try to keep myself awake. But I just learned, I just learned that the harder I try to stay awake, the faster I fall asleep. So now some nights I’m like, okay, I’m gonna stay awake the whole night and then in 18 seconds I’m asleep. <laugh> hit, hit back. But that’s how I learned it. Yeah. I think that it works like that. It doesn’t. Well, that’s how I learned how to sleep on my back, trying to stay awake.

Michelle Basnett (04:30):

Okay. All right. That’s fair. Yeah. I need to figure that one out cuz I feel like that’s better for you. Have you ever tried one of those mats? It’s like, I call it a piana mat, but it has little spikes and it’s like, almost like acupuncture, but not

Sevan Matossian (04:44):

Once a week. I do that. Yeah. I, how I do that is I put my, I I do put it on the floor. I take my shirt off, I put it on the floor, I do it on bare skin. Right. Is that what you do? Take your shirt off and just lay on your back? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>?

Michelle Basnett (04:55):


Sevan Matossian (04:56):

I don’t like it on my head though. My wife does it on her head too. I don’t like that.

Michelle Basnett (05:01):

Hmm. I haven’t tried that.

Sevan Matossian (05:03):

And I do it once a week and then I put my feet up a little bit, like on a couple pillows so that they’re just propped up just a little bit. So it’s kind of a little more weight on my back. Mm.

Michelle Basnett (05:12):


Sevan Matossian (05:12):

And, and it hurts. I think everything’s nice, but you get, it hurts but you get used to it and fall asleep.

Michelle Basnett (05:17):

Yeah. Yeah. I tried that at semi’s. I tried Taylor’s, Matt and I was like, oh, this thing works. This is nice.

Sevan Matossian (05:24):

Oh, he has one of those. You might

Michelle Basnett (05:25):

Wanna get one of those. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>.

Sevan Matossian (05:28):

I can’t believe that he, he, that seems so sophisticated for him.

Michelle Basnett (05:32):

<laugh>, he’s leveling up. I mean, you know, it’s really stepping his game up.

Sevan Matossian (05:37):

I just think of, uh, like if you tried to Amazon something like that into the Carolinas, the Amazon driver’s, like, I’m not delivering this. The fuck is this

Michelle Basnett (05:45):

<laugh> outrageous.

Sevan Matossian (05:48):

Uh, hold, let me see. I have to do a little, uh, tow spacers are the biggest fraud. They don’t correct bone structure. They may bring relief, but don’t re you know what I’m putting mine on?

Michelle Basnett (06:02):

I like the toe spacers.

Sevan Matossian (06:03):

Me too.

Michelle Basnett (06:05):

Yeah. I got some monkey by them toes. I feel like I need. No, but I like ’em like, I think my toes need that stuff. I got some grippy toes.

Sevan Matossian (06:15):

What, how, how long do you wear ’em for?

Michelle Basnett (06:18):

I can only do like, like five minutes and then my feet start to hurt. So I probably need to like, build it up a bit more. I probably need to wear them a bit more.

Sevan Matossian (06:25):

Yeah. I’m a two hour guy. I’m gonna put ’em on now and then take ’em off when the, when the podcast is over.

Michelle Basnett (06:33):

That’s impressive. Yeah. I’m gonna have to like, build up some resilience there cuz it does hurt my feet. But I think it’s cuz my feet need it.

Sevan Matossian (06:40):

I’m um, you, you know when like probably for you, it’s like you do a heavy deadlift and then you walk away from the bar, you’re like, yeah, I lifted you bitch. That’s how I feel when I look down at my toes with the toe spacers in and they’re all pushed apart. I’m like, yeah, <laugh> bad dude. Look at me. What’s up?

Michelle Basnett (06:55):


Sevan Matossian (06:55):

What’s up

Michelle Basnett (06:57):

<laugh>? This um, live chat is interesting. I haven’t had, I’ve never done one of these situations. It’s funny.

Sevan Matossian (07:04):

Be careful. Be careful. It can make me, but it could break you. You’ll be like, oh, this guy thinks I’m hot. Oh shit, this guy thinks I’m a dumb bitch. And you’ll just be on some like emotional rollercoaster. Careful.

Michelle Basnett (07:17):

Oh, it’s rest day. I think I’ll pass <laugh>.

Sevan Matossian (07:19):

Yeah. And, and re and, and remember you don’t have to answer anything in there too. You’ll just be like, I’m, I’m, um, I’m, this one’s like, when’s your birthday? You’ll be like, yeah, what’s your sign? You’ll be like, yeah. What’s your favorite sport? You’ll be like football. And it’s like, when did you lose your virginity? You’d be like, fuck <laugh>. You know what I mean? Like, easy people. Whoa,

Michelle Basnett (07:35):


Sevan Matossian (07:36):

Yeah. Well the, the first I, I spoke to you I think for the first time. I think I was FaceTiming with um, uh, uh, Mr. Um, thumb and you were there and I got a chance to speak to you. That was a couple weeks ago when you were in, uh, Africa.

Michelle Basnett (07:53):

Yeah. Yeah. So how do you guys,

Sevan Matossian (07:55):

And I was surprised you didn’t have an accent cuz even when I look at you, I, I expect like Afrikaans to, um, come outta your mouth. Are are you born in South Africa?

Michelle Basnett (08:04):

Yes. I was born in Cape Town and I was only there till I was about four and a half. And then my family moved over. So I’ve been in the state

Sevan Matossian (08:12):

Since what, what year? Thousand one? No, I’m sorry. What year were you born?

Michelle Basnett (08:18):

Oh, 1996. Oh, okay. 26. Mm-hmm.

Sevan Matossian (08:21):

<affirmative>. And how did your parents get to Cape Town?

Michelle Basnett (08:25):

Um, I mean I think it’s just like my family’s been there. Like parents, grandparents, great grandparents just goes back, I don’t know who got there first or how, but, um, generations have been there I guess. So

Sevan Matossian (08:38):

What are, um, uh, south, what are South African people who aren’t um, black skinned? Like, uh, in, in the south, like the people, the l people in Louisiana who talk funny, I forget what it’s called. Um, uh, Caucasian or something. It’s called, it’s, I forget what it’s called, but the people in the United States from Louisiana, they’re French. Right? Like the French people came and settled there. Or like in Glendale, California, it’s all Armenians right in in Los Angeles. Yeah. Some people who look like me, like the Kardashians. Where, where are you are are South Africans from somewhere? Are you guys like, um, Dutch settlers or some shit like that?

Michelle Basnett (09:12):

I wanna say Dutch, but, and I know the answer to this, but I’m just blanking, but I’m thinking Dutch. But maybe it’s also something else, but Yeah, I know what you’re saying. Um, I think it is Dutch. I dunno

Sevan Matossian (09:25):

Creole. Creole or Cajun. Is Creole a bad word? Like mulatto? Are you allowed to say Creole? I don’t know.

Michelle Basnett (09:31):

I have no idea. <laugh>.

Sevan Matossian (09:33):

I, I dunno the words.

Michelle Basnett (09:35):

<laugh>. I dunno.

Sevan Matossian (09:36):

So basically as far as you know, oh yeah. Uh, and Charlize Therone is one of one of you guys?

Michelle Basnett (09:41):

Yeah. She’s hot.

Sevan Matossian (09:43):

Yes, she is. She’s a little screwed up in her brain, but she’s cool. She’s cool looking. Yes, sir. Um, and, and so, so as far as you know, you that’s, that’s been home, uh, South Africa for your people?

Michelle Basnett (09:55):

Yeah. <laugh>. Yeah.

Sevan Matossian (09:57):

And, and why did you, um, why did your family move here and where did they move to?

Michelle Basnett (10:02):

Um, they moved straight to North Carolina. I think they were like looking at Florida, so my mom’s parents brought us over. Um, but back in 2000, I mean, moving to America is like a huge, huge thing. It still is now, you know, getting green cards and leaving the country and whatnot. So, um, I don’t know if they got green cards or visas or what it was, but they, they got our whole family over here. And then, um, my parents later on became American citizens and then I automatically got citizenship. But my parents had to drop their South African citizenship to get American citizenship. Whereas because I was under 16, I was able to keep both. And then I just renewed my passport and now I have dual citizenship. So

Sevan Matossian (10:42):

What’s the logic be behind that? Why do adults have to drop their citizenship? Do you know?

Michelle Basnett (10:47):

I don’t know. I’ve heard different stories of like, some people have to, some people don’t. So I don’t know if it’s like they just kind of pick and choose or if there is some logic behind it. But I’m, yeah, my parents didn’t want to but to become American citizens they had to drop it. Um, and so an American passport is so much more valuable than a South African passport. So

Sevan Matossian (11:06):

Did, did they leave cuz it was getting dangerous there?

Michelle Basnett (11:10):

Yeah. Yeah. I mean I think there’s a lot of reasons, um, back then. But the just danger, yes. And then you have more opportunities here. Job opportunities. I think it’s just like, uh, the idea of having a better future, especially for your kids, that was one of the biggest things. Um, and they had the opportunity to come over

Sevan Matossian (11:28):

Sophy. Physical danger.

Michelle Basnett (11:31):

Yeah. I mean it’s not, it’s like, yeah, it’s not the safest place. It’s a third one country, but it’s also just depends on where you go and you know what you’re around and you have to be a little bit, you can’t, like, there’s so much more, um, I dunno what the word is. I freedom’s the right word here. But like, they have gates around their houses. They have security systems, they have barb wire fences. I mean, my parents used to like carry guns and stuff, like guard dogs, all that stuff. When I’m here, like my, we’ll leave the house unlocked and we’ll go out, you know? Yeah. So it’s just very different. Very, very different.

Sevan Matossian (12:06):

The, the last time I was there, it’s interesting to hear you call it third world country too, cuz it has skyscrapers and shitloads of money too, right? Yeah. But the last time I was there, I went into this neighborhood and every neighbor, every home. Yeah. Had a massive walls around it. Uh, security gates, uh, security guards. Yeah. Um, when we toured the cou, everywhere we went there were, there were armed people who were armed. Um, obvi. But, and another thing I never saw is I never saw people walking on the streets. Like, like, just like, yeah. Like, just like walking around. I never saw people hanging out in front of coffee shops. I didn’t see any of that. And, and I was told, yeah. Where did you

Michelle Basnett (12:42):


Sevan Matossian (12:43):

Um, I, I wanna say I was in Johannesburg this last time.

Michelle Basnett (12:47):

Oh yeah? Okay. Yeah.

Sevan Matossian (12:48):

Even downtown where it seemed like it was nice. Basically like they said. Yeah, you can’t just be sitting out here with your laptop, like in like, you know, like, well even in the States it’s getting a little weird.

Michelle Basnett (12:58):

Yeah, that’s fair. Cause it depends on where you go. But yeah, I don’t know. I like, I thought I was, I was nervous to go to Johannesburg cuz I’ve heard that it’s more dangerous and stuff. But I was, we were more in the suburb area. I think the city is pretty hectic. Um, I dunno, my headphones might die. Um, but when we were in the suburbs, like I didn’t feel that unsafe. Like, I thought it was, it was pretty fine. But it’s, it, you can’t be stupid. You can’t leave your stuff out. You can’t leave stuff in your car. Um, so there is that aspect to it, I guess.

Sevan Matossian (13:30):

Yeah. San Francisco’s turned into that. How is, how are, where, where in the Carolinas are you? You’re in South Carolina, you said

Michelle Basnett (13:35):

North Carolina. What’s just outside? Charlotte.

Sevan Matossian (13:37):

Charlotte? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And, and that, and that’s where you’ve been since, since you came as a kid?

Michelle Basnett (13:44):

Mm-hmm. <affirmative> grown up here?

Sevan Matossian (13:46):

No accent.

Michelle Basnett (13:48):

No. I wish I had it <laugh>. But you, like I picked up on the accent here. So I grew up here, did school here. So my accent over the years kind of faded. My parents still have theirs.

Sevan Matossian (13:58):

But I mean, southern accent, you still don’t even have a southern accent. That’s what I meant by accent.

Michelle Basnett (14:03):

Oh, okay. Yeah, I guess not. Um, maybe we still make some words, but

Sevan Matossian (14:08):

My sister moved to Texas and she says y’all and stuff like that. She start when she gets all wound up. She sounds like she picks up a southern drawl.

Michelle Basnett (14:15):

Yeah, I’ll say y’all sometimes if it’s necessary, but, um, I don’t know.

Sevan Matossian (14:20):

I guess Taylor doesn’t have an accent either.

Michelle Basnett (14:23):

Mm-hmm. I don’t think so.

Sevan Matossian (14:25):

So, uh, ju just, you’re just a fucking normal American kid. You just happen to have South African and, and CrossFits really tiny in Africa, basically.

Michelle Basnett (14:35):

Um, yeah, I guess so. But I mean, their communities are really big. So in Cape Town there’s um, I don’t know how many boxes, maybe anywhere between like 30 to 50 boxes. But Johannesburg I heard had like 150 boxes spread out. And um, I mean, south Africa’s huge. I traveled up the coast, um, and like went and visited my grandma one time and there was like different boxes along the way. So it’s big there in a sense. Um, and the community’s really big, so I think, I think, I mean

Sevan Matossian (15:04):

Relative like Italy, like Italy might have a thousand boxes, right? Yeah. Or France, or it’s still, it’s, and the whole, for some reason the whole continent, whether it’s economic or, um, cultural, but it’s, but it’s not taking off there. I mean, there’s obviously places on the continent that have fucking money, but it’s still not taking off there outside of South Africa. I mean, it’s not like Egypt has 500 boxes. Right. But Egypt could definitely afford to have 500 boxes.

Michelle Basnett (15:30):

That’s fair.

Sevan Matossian (15:30):

Yeah. I mean they, they’ve shied the money, right?

Michelle Basnett (15:34):

Yeah. I don’t know if it’ll ever get to like a crazy level, but it’s, it’s definitely still presence there, I would say.

Sevan Matossian (15:39):

And, and, um, uh, so, so you’re here as a kid? Siblings?

Michelle Basnett (15:44):

I got two older brothers.

Sevan Matossian (15:46):

Cool dudes.

Michelle Basnett (15:48):

Yeah. Yeah, they’re pretty cool. My oldest brother’s really funny. Like he’s a, me and him crack up. Like we joke up all the time.

Sevan Matossian (15:57):


Michelle Basnett (15:57):

He and my middle brother’s a little bit more serious.

Sevan Matossian (16:00):

Your, uh, your older brother’s, the military dude. The guy who likes guns and shit?

Michelle Basnett (16:05):

Yeah. He was a army ranger and a medic. Yeah, there he is.

Sevan Matossian (16:10):

And, and your younger brother’s more like the, he looks more like a model. He’s like all handsome and shit. Yeah.

Michelle Basnett (16:15):

<laugh>. Yeah. Him and his, um, wife. I call them Barbie and Ken <laugh>, but they’re cool. I love my

Sevan Matossian (16:22):

Brothers. Yeah. You got one of each. Darn, I don’t have the picture of your other one, even though he makes a few more, uh, um, appearances and, uh, around there. So you’re here, your whole family comes, I guess your family’s pretty stoked. I, you know, my family, um, my dad’s first generation also here in the United States, uh, pretty happy. Oh, nice. Uh, what do your parents do?

Michelle Basnett (16:44):

So my mom, um, nannies and then my dad, and she’s done that for a long time. She works with a few families. And then my dad has a pool business. Um, so him and my two brothers started that up a few years ago, um, or maybe like two years ago. But my dad’s been in the pool industry since, uh, he was in South Africa. So my mom’s dad had a huge pool business. My dad worked for him, came over to the States. Um, and then he recently started up another pool company with my two brothers. And so they’ve been killing that the last two years.

Sevan Matossian (17:17):

Digging pools or maintaining pools.

Michelle Basnett (17:20):

Um, digging, building, designing. So they’ll do it start to finish. Wow. They do that whole process? Yeah. Yeah. Okay. And then I’ve like started the design side of it a little bit, like kind of part-time.

Sevan Matossian (17:33):

Hey, um, uh, what about taking, what about taking car of Pools? Is that good business? Is there good money in that?

Michelle Basnett (17:40):

I think, yeah, I think it can be. It’s like a, it’s like another division we’ve like looked at, but it’s a bit of a startup and the scheduling and getting someone in there, it’s um, it is good, but it’s not as big as the designing and the building and stuff like that.

Sevan Matossian (17:56):

And if you’re gonna be good at it, it’s kind of crazy, right? Because although there’s like the general filters and the general process that pulls work, it’s, it’s like, it’s the technology. It’s like fucking car stereos, right? I mean, like, they’re like changing every fucking month. There’s, they’re updating, there’s just new shit happening. But I think I have, I have a gardener here at my house and him, and, and he’s, he, he has a bunch of sons and I think they fucking murder just maintaining people’s shit. And I thought about that too. I was like, wow, someone I bet you have pulled business fucking kills, but you kind of have to have really competent people.

Michelle Basnett (18:29):

Yeah. Yeah. It’s

Sevan Matossian (18:31):

Screw up someone’s people

Michelle Basnett (18:32):

On schedule and stuff.

Sevan Matossian (18:33):

Yeah. Or blow up someone’s filter or put the wrong chemicals in and burn a kid or just do anything, uh, crazy.

Michelle Basnett (18:39):

Yeah. You don’t wanna mess that stuff up. So you gotta have someone that knows what they’re doing. But

Sevan Matossian (18:43):

Look, Mike can do it where

Michelle Basnett (18:44):

Parents come from.

Sevan Matossian (18:46):

Pool. Boy, look at this guy. Can do can be the first guy in <laugh>. Do you need

Michelle Basnett (18:49):

A pool?

Sevan Matossian (18:49):

Boy? <laugh>? Yeah. Do you know this guy?

Michelle Basnett (18:52):

No, I don’t think so.

Sevan Matossian (18:53):

Oh, you should? Do you have a boyfriend?

Michelle Basnett (18:56):

I don’t have a boyfriend, no. Okay.

Sevan Matossian (18:57):

Well there he could be Pool boy and a boyfriend is a dual. You dual citizenship? Dual occupational, uh, something. My parents are, um, um, I’m Armenian. I’m a hundred percent Armenian. Uh, my, my, oh, okay. Mom’s family grew up in Turkey. And then my dad’s family, well actually my dad’s family’s from Turkey too. And then there was a war and a genocide, and so they fled and Armenians kind of fled all over the world. And my mom’s family came to the United States and my dad’s family was taken, um, to, uh, Lebanon.

Michelle Basnett (19:26):


Sevan Matossian (19:27):

And then from there, my dad, um, went to, uh, Chicago where my mom was. He went to school there in Northwestern. My dad was, uh, 10 10. I think there were 10 kids in my dad’s family. And then he met my mom there in church. And then, um, my dad was kind of like the kind of gross scummy Armenian, foreign Armenian. And my par mom didn’t want mom’s parents didn’t want him marrying like, you know, like a, like a, like a dirty immigrant Armenian. But she wanted to, so they eloped. And then like any dirty immigrant, my dad opened up a liquor store and bought some real estate. Here I am.

Michelle Basnett (20:01):


Sevan Matossian (20:01):

Reaping, reaping, bouncing.

Michelle Basnett (20:02):

Do you ever see your <laugh>, do you ever see your extended family? Like,

Sevan Matossian (20:08):

Uh, I, I used to my family kind of. Uh, um, I used to. I don’t anymore. That’s a, that’s a, that’s kind of sucks. Thanks for touching on a, a wound. Sorry. Uh, do you see yours? Yeah. I don’t, I used to grew up with like cousins and aunt uncles and shit. I don’t anymore. Yeah. I, I don’t,

Michelle Basnett (20:25):

Well wait. Your dad had, you said 10 brothers and

Sevan Matossian (20:27):

Sisters? Yeah, I think he was one of 10. Yeah. Two of ’em died like as kids, but yeah, the other one of them I see one of my aunts is in Fresno and I see her periodically probably four, four times a year. But the rest I don’t see at all. At all. Zero. Well, it’s kinda hard. But I grew up with them. I grew up playing with them and shit. That’s, that’s weird. I don’t have time for that shit anymore. Do you see your extended family?

Michelle Basnett (20:50):

When I go to Africa, I get to, and then I have some, uh, my mom’s family is in the States, but I don’t see them too much when I can, I guess.

Sevan Matossian (20:59):

Yeah. How often do you go back to Africa?

Michelle Basnett (21:02):

I’ve gone back like once a year. The last, since 2018 for competition. So that’s been pretty nice. Um, cause I love going to cave town. It’s like one of my favorite spots, especially in the summer. Like, that’s so nice.

Sevan Matossian (21:16):

I feel like my life has become kind of fringe too. This is gonna sound fucking like horrible, but like most of the people I knew are still caterpillars and I turned into a butterfly.

Michelle Basnett (21:30):

That’s fair. That’s not, I mean, that’s not a bad thing.

Sevan Matossian (21:32):

Like, they still think they’re gonna go to the doctor and the doctor says eat canola oil and that’s good for you. And I’m like, now I’m gonna exercise and eat, um, some meat and fruit and vegetables.

Michelle Basnett (21:42):

Yeah. I feel like that’s like most of America though,

Sevan Matossian (21:44):

<laugh>. And I feel like that’s

Michelle Basnett (21:45):

Just, you can’t really convince them otherwise.

Sevan Matossian (21:46):

I feel like that’s just separated me from them. They’re like in the machine.

Michelle Basnett (21:50):

Mm-hmm. <affirmative>.

Sevan Matossian (21:52):

They, they, they think, they think drug addicts need shelter <laugh>. I don’t, I

Michelle Basnett (21:58):

Don’t think that they’re just about your people then.

Sevan Matossian (22:00):

Yeah, it’s weird. It’s, I’ve completely, I I I’ve gone off the, I’ve gone off the deep end, but I like to think of, I’ve just evolved.

Michelle Basnett (22:08):

Yeah. Yeah. I would say that you’re leveling up.

Sevan Matossian (22:11):

I’m a I’m an accounta personal responsibility, accountability person. My 18th girlfriend has cheated on me in a row at some point. It’s like my fault. I’m choosing the wrong bitches.

Michelle Basnett (22:24):


Sevan Matossian (22:25):

It’s like, wait a minute. Exactly. Wait a minute, wait a minute here. Right.

Michelle Basnett (22:31):

I’m doing something wrong.

Sevan Matossian (22:32):

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. I keep bringing, I why is my house full of dog hair? Well, because I keep bringing dogs home.

Michelle Basnett (22:40):


Sevan Matossian (22:42):


Michelle Basnett (22:42):

Like, but most people don’t wanna take their own accountability, you know?

Sevan Matossian (22:45):

Yeah. Um, are your, is your, so, so you’re, you come to the United States, you got two brothers. Are you, are you tomboyish? Are you pretty tough? Are you tough girls since you have two, two older brothers?

Michelle Basnett (22:55):

Yeah, a little bit. I would say. So like me, we like grew up messing with each other and joking with each other, wrestling, all that stuff. So, um, we still do that. But yeah, a little bit, but I’m also kind of girly. I think it’s like a bit of both. Just depends.

Sevan Matossian (23:12):

You ever do and, and you’ve uh, you have an interest a little bit in boxing?

Michelle Basnett (23:17):

Yeah, I, um, picked that up a bit. A few years ago. I met, um, Steffy Cohen. She’s a powerlifter boxer.

Sevan Matossian (23:26):

That was a few years ago.

Michelle Basnett (23:29):

That was like 2019 maybe.

Sevan Matossian (23:32):

I remember that video.

Michelle Basnett (23:33):

This is, yeah.

Sevan Matossian (23:35):

I thought you were a real boxer when I saw that video.

Michelle Basnett (23:38):

No, I do. I didn’t even know we were filming that day. I just, I just messaged her and was like, Hey, can I work out with you? And she was like, sure. <laugh>, there was, we did that. It was like the first time I boxed and then there was like a YouTube video. I was like, oh wow. Um, but yeah, I, I liked it when I did it with her. And then last year when I was super burnt out and I just, like, I didn’t wanna step in a gym, but obviously I still wanted to work out. So this was like another thing to, I mean, I don’t know if you’ve ever boxed, but like the cardio fitness side of it. I mean, skipping rope for like five minutes and like jumping around and it’s hard, it’s tiring. And I was, the coordination from my hands to my feet, I was really bad at that.


So it just challenged me in another way. Um, I liked it and there’s a lot of technique to it, so I didn’t get super far with it just cuz I, I did like a couple sessions. Um, this is my friend Akeem. I worked with him. He’s local and um, but yeah, it’s pretty fun. I just don’t, I like for a second there I was like, yeah, I think I might wanna do a fight. And then my brother was like, no, like you, you can’t be getting hit in the head <laugh>. And he was like, don’t, don’t do a fight. And I was like, okay.

Sevan Matossian (24:41):

So hey. Um, uh, I know, are you still friends with Hakeem?

Michelle Basnett (24:47):

Yeah, I haven’t talked to him a while, but

Sevan Matossian (24:49):

He, he kind of looks like, um, uh, Al Jermaine Sterling. Do you know who that is? I didn’t realize that until, I just saw from this angle he kind of looks like a yoked version of Al Joe. And I mean, Al Joe’s pretty yoked too. I should show

Michelle Basnett (25:02):

You picture. I think he does. He’s like part bodybuilding, part, um, boxing. He does a bit of both.

Sevan Matossian (25:08):

Sot tell me about how, so, uh, Steffy Cohen, 25 World Records, uh, million followers on Instagram. Uh, you’re just this podunk CrossFitter from the Carolinas two years ago. How do you, um, how do you, do you have to, how do you, you just like DM her and you’re like, hi, can I come punch with you? Yeah,

Michelle Basnett (25:28):

<laugh>, I was literally like, Hey, can I come work out with you? Yeah. And she was like, yeah girl, that’s fine. We’re gonna be at the her gym, her hybrid gym at the time. And um, I think I might have, I think our boxing coach had messaged me a few times and so we just kind of linked up that

Sevan Matossian (25:45):

Day. Like, like, like he was court. Like he was courting you?

Michelle Basnett (25:49):

No, maybe, maybe not. But he was just like, you should come box. I don’t even

Sevan Matossian (25:53):

Remember four more like ago, but more like recruiting than courting. Courting has romantic implications. Recruiting is like more for like, hey, he saw you had potential.

Michelle Basnett (26:01):

Yeah. I mean, you never know <laugh>.

Sevan Matossian (26:02):

Yeah. Well again, very good point. You’re very smart. You understand men. That’s it. You just, you just figured men out.

Michelle Basnett (26:10):

That’s fair. But yeah,

Sevan Matossian (26:13):

John Wick

Michelle Basnett (26:14):


Sevan Matossian (26:15):

John Wick is here. Uh, Keanu Reeves is in the house. She’s single as fuck. Uh, hey dude, there’s no reason to scream that from the mountaintops. Be cool. It’s chill. Uh, an African Carolinan. Uh, yes. Mason Mitchell. Uh, very well said. Okay, so so you go there. Are you intimidated by her at all? I mean, she’s, she’s she’s, she’s as big as you get in kind of in this fitness space. Like name wise, uh, uh right. Intelligence, uh, prestige, um,

Michelle Basnett (26:42):

Yeah, I mean maybe to a degree, but I feel like you have to walk into those situations as like you’re just as much as a, a presence as her, you know what I mean? Like, it was awesome to work out with her and have that. And um, I also like meeting other females in the fitness industry and just kind of connecting through that because like in my day to day or like my friends from high school and stuff, like, we don’t have that in common at all. So anytime I find another female that’s like into fitness or has something going on or whatnot, like I really love that. So it was more so just kind of like connecting with her. And um, I would say we were both kind of shy at first. Like it was like she, I would say she was pretty shy too. Um, she’s really sweet and we just kind of did the session together and it was nice. It was fun, but I also didn’t really know what was going on cuz I’d never really been filmed before. So I was like, what <laugh>.

Sevan Matossian (27:33):

Oh, you did great. I didn’t know that. I thought the video turned out good, don’t you?

Michelle Basnett (27:38):

Yeah. I thought it was awesome. So, and like I liked the boxing, like it was, it was cool.

Sevan Matossian (27:43):

Yeah. Um, what about, um, uh, did that, um, did that get you a lot, garner you a lot of attention? Like, did you put on a lot of followers? Did people start reaching out to you for other things from that? Cuz she’s so high profile. Um,

Michelle Basnett (27:55):

Not too much to be honest. No. Um, maybe a little bit, I think around that time, uh, that must have been before bp. So my following was maybe around like 30, 40, 50. So I started my Instagram back in high school. Like this was my high school Instagram, like typical just like posting like any high schooler would. And then when I got into CrossFit I would start posting like PR videos or this or that. And then over the years it kind of just like picked up and stuff. Um, and then I would say it really picked up when I started working with bp. I did my first like shoot with them What’s

Sevan Matossian (28:29):

Bp? And then

Michelle Basnett (28:30):

I with born primitive. Oh, oh

Sevan Matossian (28:32):

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Oh I love their, I I have some of their sweats. Ariel Lowen sent me some of their, I think they’re called joggers. Oh that’s man, that, are you still with them?

Michelle Basnett (28:40):

No, um, we recently, my contract recently ended, but we’re kinda, I’m in talks of maybe courtship,

Sevan Matossian (28:46):

Re-upping or that’s some courtship. Yeah. Or as they say negotiations. Yeah, exactly. I really like their stuff.

Michelle Basnett (28:55):

Yeah. But yeah, so then when I, um, their stuff is good. I like it as well. I’ve been with them for two years. But when I shot with Danny and Josie, cuz they were, we were all, um, in the same or

Sevan Matossian (29:08):

We were. That’s Jo, that’s Josie in the middle.

Michelle Basnett (29:11):

That’s Josie. Josie Aming. Yeah. Sweet girl. Really good

Sevan Matossian (29:15):

Friend. You guys make her look tiny. Look how small her head is compared to your guys’ head

Michelle Basnett (29:19):

<laugh>. Yeah, me and Danny got some potato heads. <laugh>.

Sevan Matossian (29:22):

Yeah. That’s awesome. I love a potato head. I’m a huge fan of a giant head.

Michelle Basnett (29:26):

Same <laugh>.

Sevan Matossian (29:27):

Okay, sorry, go on. So that, so that this got you more attention than the Steffi Cohen video is what you’re saying?

Michelle Basnett (29:34):

Yeah, cuz

Sevan Matossian (29:35):

They’re point mean Danny’s got a fucking time. Danny has a crazy active account.

Michelle Basnett (29:40):

Yeah. And I think they, they’d been in this space much longer than I had as well. Um, so then between that and then that same year I made the games. Um, and then my page has just kind of been growing since then. So you

Sevan Matossian (29:55):

Don’t tag them in this, is that, is that on purpose?

Michelle Basnett (29:59):

I think they, they should be.

The above transcript is generated using AI technology and therefore may contain errors.

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