Scoop: The Return of Greg Glassman, and a Book Coming Out on the Origins of CrossFit

July 21, 2021 by
Photo Credit: Dave Re
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Rumors of the early stage developments of a book telling the story of the origins of Greg Glassman and CrossFit were confirmed by Morning Chalk Up on Monday. 

  • A precursor to its publication, an Instagram account called “The CrossFit Book” launched quietly on April 30, but didn’t post again until July 7 and is now regularly posting stories from the early days of CrossFit’s founding, including quotes directly from Glassman himself. 

So who’s behind this: In a word Glassman, but the Instagram page itself and the writing of the book is being handled by Emily Kaplan, a former journalist and crisis communicator turned friend of Glassman who was brought on during last summer’s PR crisis to run point on communications amid the fallout. 

  • According to the Kaplan, “Defining Fitness,” the book’s current working title, will tell the story of Greg Glassman and his founding of CrossFit through the lens of his contrarian nature and unwillingness to conform to the fitness status quo that led to founding a counter-cultural fitness revolution that would impact millions.
  • “My goal is it to tell the story of CrossFit’s impact on the world and how this disruptive force for good came to be,” Kaplan told us. 
  • Glassman has given Kaplan complete access to his personal archives, records and email communications to assist with the project. 
  • Kaplan has already interviewed more than 60 people for the book and hopes to have it completed by late fall to be released in early 2022. 

The big picture: Glassman has been silent since he sold the company to Eric Roza just one year ago until Tuesday when he made his first public comments since the sale in a New Yorker article profiling CrossFit’s acquisition and Glassman:

  • Glassman: “I ran a gym I would join. Formed an affiliate program that I would participate in, wrote material that, had I seen it twenty years ago, we’d all be a whole lot fitter. CrossFit succeeded because I was willing to tell the truth that no one else would tell. The world’s changed and I haven’t.”
  • Glassman still believes wholeheartedly in the broader mission of fixing the ills of modern health and the unique role CrossFit can play in that arena, but the key question is what role does Glassman intend to play going forward?

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