A Day in the Life: American Ninja Warrior Josh Levin

The Northeastern senior will compete in the finals this summer.

Josh Levin

Josh Levin. Photo by Brandon Hickman/NBC

Ever wondered how people who eat, sleep, and breathe health spend their days? We did. So in this series, we’ll take you behind the scenes and show you a day in the life.

Josh Levin, American Ninja Warrior 

Josh Levin is remarkably unfazed by his success on American Ninja Warrior.

“It wasn’t anything too crazy,” he says. “There’s a lot of cameras and everything, but you don’t really think about the fact that you’re on TV. I was more looking forward to the experience and getting a chance to play around on the obstacles.”

Maybe Levin’s California upbringing is to thank for his chill. Or, maybe his side gig as a professional rock climber explains his nonchalance. Either way, the Northeastern University senior, 22, is doing something right.

In an episode broadcast Monday, Levin was the only contestant to finish the grueling Los Angeles qualifying course. (If you’re not sure what that entails, watch this clip.) That performance earned him a spot in the finals, which will be televised later this summer.

The season may have wrapped—Levin has already completed his finals run, though he’s not giving any spoilers—and Levin may have returned to his mechanical engineering courses at Northeastern, but we asked him to walk us through what a day is like when you’re training for American Ninja Warrior.

Breakfast: Levin geared up for busy days with granola, yogurt, blueberries, and peanut butter.

9 a.m.: Levin had to balance his training with a full-time internship at Apple’s California offices, so he spent his days at work.

Lunch: A big salad topped with avocado, chicken, quinoa, and plenty of veggies.

5 p.m.: The work day is done.

Dinner: Levin changed it up frequently, eating things like pasta or chicken.

7 p.m.: Time to start training. Levin’s usual routine included:

  • An full warm-up, since he injured his shoulder a couple years ago and underwent surgery in December 2014.
  • Rock climbing exercises, to practice skills like finger strength and endurance. For example, he might climb the same route three times, going faster each time. “[Rock climbing is] much more of a problem solving approach,” Levin says. “It’s both physical and mental, and that is probably the biggest advantage we have as climbers.”
  • Weight training, body weight exercises, core exercises, and rope climbs.
  • On some weekends, he’d also squeeze in obstacle practice at the American Ninja Warrior training gym in Concord, California.

10-11 p.m.: Levin finishes up at the gym, and heads home to sleep.

Watch for Levin in the finals later this summer. He’ll be competing for his coach, who is in need of a double lung transplant, and to raise awareness for organ donation. “If you have one minute to say something to 8 million people, what are you going to say?” Levin asks. “Maybe I can spread some positive social change and make a positive impact on the world.”