MURPH – Completing Every Last Rep

As I mentioned in a previous post, challenge, humility, and a boost to the next generation can be found when you join the Memorial Day Murph Challenge and donate to the scholarship fund. What a great way to honor those who have died while serving in our military. We’ve donated and registered 5 to perform Murph at the studio on Saturday. Murph Challenge Website.

But you can also get a lot out of this Crossfit WOD regardless of your level of conditioning –those who have joined us over this past year prove it!

Take the opportunity this Memorial Day weekend to challenge yourself; there are many ways to scale the Murph, giving you steps to take toward completion. I’ve come to see this WOD as a baseline for fitness. It’s never easy, but completing it in any form is an achievement.

Scaling Murph

The prescribed (Rx) is: 1 mile run, 100 pull ups, 200 push ups, 300 air squats, 1 mile run, all wearing 20# vest. You can perform the exercises as 5/10/15 reps for twenty circuits. That is the highwater mark, so don’t expect to do Rx until you’ve trained for it. Some of us will never do the Rx, and that’s fine too.

Most often we scale our clients with:

  1. Modified pull ups (Jumping, Band, Suspension Pull ups)
  2. Reduced reps (Half Murph)
  3. No weight vest (Body weight only)

Half Murph: 1/2 mile run/walk, 50 pull ups, 100 push ups, 150 air squats, 1/2 mile run/walk performed as 5/10/15 reps for ten circuits

Regardless of your conditioning, you’ll feel this one for days. I don’t see this WOD as an actual work out to build either strength or conditioning because it’s so high volume and high intensity. Doing it often (like weekly) will leave you in overtraining recovery mode, while doing it less frequently (like bi-weekly) won’t give you enough volume to see the kind of progress other work outs will give you.

But doing it occasionally (like every 6-8 weeks) will tell you whether your conditioning is improving. Plus, repeatedly performing it will challenge your discipline, as well as your body. To me, that’s the best part of performing Murph: developing the self discipline to finish what you start: even when you realize you have hundreds more to go and your mind whispers that shaving off a few won’t hurt anyone and no one is even looking, you still manage to complete every last rep.

See you on the other side of this Memorial Day weekend!



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