“It’s all in the mind” for Legacy Gym owner and fighter Ole Laursen

Ole Laursen Legacy_Dojo Drifter_Mike Miguel

It took almost three years and a familiar invitation for Ole Laursen to get back in the saddle.

[mks_dropcap style=”square” size=”52″ bg_color=”#1588db” txt_color=”#ffffff”]L[/mks_dropcap]ast January, Filipino–Danish MMA veteran Ole Laursen successfully returned to action after a very long hiatus. He submitted Kazakh fighter Ansagan Kussainov in Art of War 16: Return of the King.

In an interview at Legacy Gym Boracay, Laursen tells Dojo Drifter how pleased he was with the comeback victory. Art of War Fighting Championship is the organization where Laursen first tasted victory as a mixed martial artist, so when he received an invitation to fight, he quickly took it.

“I haven’t fought in a long time, so when they asked me to come back, I jumped on it right away because I fought in Art of War twice and I’m undefeated, winning by stoppages. I would like to keep that streak going. It’s hard for me to be inspired to really give it one hundred percent in training and there’s so much required so for some reason this Art of War inspired me,” says Laursen.

The owner of Legacy Gym adds, “Art of War has been shut down, closed down for like for four-five years so, and they’re coming back and they’re gonna make it big so I wanted to be part of it.”

“I love Art of War,” Laursen exclaims. “They fuckin’ got like extreme rules and these fighters always fight crazy and the fans are nuts so the show is fucking amazing. It’s just cool man, they’re a super organization, so I was inspired to go in and put my running shoes and train hard.”

Ole Laursen (right) takes pride after Zebaztian Kadestam (middle) defended his welterweight title in PXC 53.
Ole Laursen (right) takes pride after Zebaztian Kadestam (middle) defended his welterweight title in PXC 53.

Prior to his return to the Chinese MMA organization, Laursen had previous offers from other leagues. These failed to reach fruition due to injuries and circumstances beyond his control. On top of those, getting on the road back to fighting is quite tough for him. He admitted the mental aspect is the most challenging part.

In his time outside the cage, he served his team’s motivator. This caused a bit of a struggle to maintain his focus as a fighter but didn’t let it drag him down. Ole Laursen was determined to show everyone he still has what it takes, so he took his preparations up a notch, far from the usual approach in his previous ten fights. [mks_pullquote align=”left” width=”300″ size=”24″ bg_color=”#1588db” txt_color=”#ffffff”]“I knew that I wanted to win with a big W. I really wanted to say ‘Fuck it, I really take it serious.’” [/mks_pullquote] “Well, I’ve done it many times before and where I’ve taken my fights for granted. I (was) kind of floating, thinking that I don’t need to put in that much work, or it’s not too hard, I don’t really need to train too hard and I’ve done that for many fights and I figured because I’m always training with the guys. I have a lot of guys in my team that I’m taking care of,” Ole Laursen describes his past preparations. “I always have to be there; training (with) them and it doesn’t actually push me too much. My job becomes more of a pusher versus I’m the guy telling people what to do so it’s hard to be inspired. But for this fight, I knew that I wanted to win with a big W. I really wanted to say ‘Fuck it, I really take it serious.’”

The approach Laursen took was more personal, like a budding fighter determined to win his fight. “I really woke up early in the morning on my own, went running on my own, I went sprinting on my own, I did all the hard work. It’s actually the hardest that I’ve trained in a long time. I can’t tell it because it was over so quick but I really did put in a lot of work.”

Laursen is glad to regain confidence stemming from all the hard work he put prior to the Kussainov fight. This left another good impression from the people Art of War but more importantly, it set a good example to his fighters. [mks_pullquote align=”right” width=”300″ size=”24″ bg_color=”#1588db” txt_color=”#ffffff”]“You put in the work and that’s all it is, you know?”[/mks_pullquote]“It feels good, you know? You go into the ring and you feel you’ve done anything possible to come out as the winner. If I don’t come out as a winner, it’s because the other guy’s the better fighter and there’s no shame on that. But I came into the fight knowing I’ve put in the work. Mentally, I’m prepared. I’m physically prepared and I’m fast, I’m strong, I’m smart, and I’m good all-around, so I felt confident. You put in the work and that’s all it is, you know? I’ve always preached that, but it’s different when you’re the one that has to do it so I felt good coming into this fight.”

The victory takes Ole Laursen along with the top ranked fighters who vie in for the promotion’s welterweight title. As far as he’s concerned, though, he just wants to be more active as a fighter and compete as often as he can.

“I hope so,” Laursen mentions on fighting more frequent than in the past. “The thing is, you get comfortable sitting back on the sofa and chilling for too long and I don’t wanna chill, I wanna fucking fight.”

“I just gotta stay sharp and keep the mental aspect going because one thing is training, but you also have to be mentally ready, devoted, that’s the hardest thing I think. But yeah, I feel good and I want to keep the ball rolling. I want to see if I can start a whole new chapter. I’ve been doing this for so long, but it’s hard for me to stop. I just like to fight.”

Mike Miguel

If there’s anything MMA related going down in the Philippines, Mike would know about it. With a knack for photography and social media, Mike never misses a beat.
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