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What's Next?

Classic post Murph pose... Photo: Oscar Bravo

Hey team,

It's time for a new focal point, and there's one on the fairly near horizon that is both inspiring and anxiety inducing... and that is the MURPH Challenge. Every year, CrossFit gyms around the world do this infamous workout on Memorial Day (last Monday in May) to honour the memory of Lt Michael Murphy as well as front line heroes both past and present.

The Murph workout is a toughie, consisting of a 1 mile run, 100 pullups, 200 pushups, 300 squats, and another 1 mile run. Not for the faint of heart, and even more so since the "Rx" version involves wearing a weight vest for the whole thing.

The workout can be done a bunch of different ways. The first two are full Rx and are different only in how you tackle the gymnastics work in the middle. Most people do the workout "partitioned" meaning that they break the 100, 200, 300 into multiple sets of smaller reps. The most common is doing 20 rounds of 5 pullups, 10 pushups, 15 squats. A few intrepid souls will do the workout "unpartitioned", meaning that they will do the reps for pullups first, then move to pushups, then to squats. This approach is a LOT more damaging and draining!

We also have usually groups of people doing half murph (cut everything in half), murph with no weight vest, and partner murph (alternating runs and rounds of cindy- a really fun way to do it).

We don't know what the end of May will look like right now for Covid, but I'm hopeful that we can take this challenge on in some form. We will pencil in Sunday May 30th as our event day, during which we would run heats of the Murph workout throughout the day. Since the workout is so long, it doesn't run well in classes, so we'll do it a day early! We also do this event by donation, with all proceeds going to the Soldier On Organization, which supports personnel injured in the line of duty access fitness, sport, and health programs.

So how do you prepare for this behemoth? By attending class... and then getting in an extra run and a lot of extra pushups and pullups in! We'll program one wod a week as a murph prep workout, but for most people, the pullups or pushups are the crux of the challenge... so getting more reps in will go a LONG way!

One more thing is that this workout really MEANS something... which is to say that the standard of movement must be very high to do full honour to both the challenge and the men and women endangering themselves for our protection on a daily basis. So practice your movements and make sure they are up to a high quality!

One major range of motion standard that we use for Murph is a "chin to ground" pushup. This is especially useful when people are wearing weight vests and prevents the saggy "belly to ground" reps that are pretty common in this workout. Practice this standard to get used to it so you are ready on Murph day!!


Another update for programming is that we will be working strength in three key movements over the next 5 weeks. We will deadlift on mon-tues, front squat on wed-thurs, and push press on fri-sat (generally). The goal with these three movements is to build up to a heavy single in each one at the end of the 5 weeks. So track your numbers, bump up a little bit each time, and aim for some big numbers!!



WARM UP: 3 rounds - 40 single skips or 20 jumping jacks, 10 air squats holding pole, 30 sec per side front rack stretch, 10 barbell presses


For max load: 4 rep max Front Squat

Time cap: 20 mins (try to use less time to have enough time to get the next event done!)

Challenge yourself but be safe!


For time:

120 Wall Balls, 20/14 lbs, 10/9 ft

120 Row Calories

Time cap: 15 mins

Get a taste of the quarterfinal competition!

Men go to high beam, not the 9' one!

FG3: 90/90 @ full weight

FG2: Scale wallball weight

FG1: 70/70, scale wallball as needed


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