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Top Athletes Making Changes for 2021

Morning Chalk Up

January 12   |   POWERED BY


Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up.

In today’s edition:

  • Elite CrossFit athletes join new training camps for 2021.
  • The 2021 Open may not be as different as you think.
  • How much of your gym revenue should come from group classes?

We love seeing your story tips, quotes and PRs roll in. Keep sending them to [email protected].

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“All mankind is divided into three classes: those that are immovable, those that are movable, and those that move.” - Benjamin Franklin

  New Faces, New Places: Athletes On The Move In 2021 

New Faces, New Places: Athletes On The Move In 2021

The 2021 CrossFit Games season is coming into full view, and we’re less than two months away from the official kick off of the Open. Every year the competitive landscape shifts as athletes evolve and make changes to their regimen including coaches, programming focus, and training environment.

This season is no different and we have already seen some moving and shaking from well-known athletes and podium finishers as they gear up for another round of competitive fitness. With that in mind we’ve compiled a list of the confirmed changes so far in the new year as preparations ramp up for the March 11 start date of the Open.

Flashback: During the Regionals era, physical location changes had major ramifications on the competitive landscape as an athlete’s location dictated their Region, and subsequently which Regional they competed in. This meant a simple change of scenery also meant a change in the athlete field (and relative difficulty) that would stand in the way of a Games ticket.

  • With the 2021 rulebook clarifying that citizenship will dictate your competitive location (i.e. continent) any location changes in isolation will only drastically affect athletes that live outside of the country of their citizenship which could potentially require them to travel internationally in order to compete.
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  • The Trials Finals are happening this weekend and Loud and Live Sports is announcing the qualifiers for each division now.
  • Mat Fraser and Sammy Moniz appeared on the Hybrid Unlimited podcast this week to talk about competition, training and Fraser’s legacy.  On training for the Games, “Creating a conditioning monster, where your body just eats lactic acid…while also building that one-rep max with good technique.”
  • Haley Adams and NOCCO are giving away ten cases of the no carb, BCAA beverage.
  • National Human Trafficking Awareness Day — Mayhem Missions, the charitable arm of Rich Froning’s CrossFit Mayhem has partnered with Rescue: Freedom International and Elevation Church to create an awareness event (more details soon) and fundraising drive to combat human trafficking.
  • 2021 Troop Care Team Row — On February 12, Troop Care is hosting an online, 12-hour team rowing competition to bring awareness to and raise money to help veterans and first responders who are struggling with mental health issues.
  The 2021 CrossFit Open May Not Be As Different As You Think 

The 2021 CrossFit Open May Not Be As Different As You Think

Two weeks ago, the CrossFit Games announced via Instagram that competitors in the 2021 Open would only need a barbell, a box, a pull-up bar, a dumbbell, and a jump rope. They also introduced the concept of an equipment-free open that athletes would be able to participate in from the comfort of their own living rooms.

One big thing: The post pulled in over 500 comments of curious Open hopefuls wondering how this might change the look of the Open. In the past, Dave Castro has been known to bank on the unknown and unknowable. But the truth is, for the past ten years, the Open has been largely predictable.

  • From 2010 to 2020, there have only been 33 unique exercises featured in the Open.
  • Of those exercises, only three* cannot be performed without the equipment that CrossFit has decided to include in the 2021 Open. Those movements are wall balls, muscle-ups, and rowing for calories.

Groundhog day: It seems that the Open tends to favor what’s familiar. With the exception of perennial favorites of Castro that have been featured in the Open since its inception, Castro has only added an average of 2 new movements to each Open.

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  If Your Business is 80 Percent Group Class Revenue, You’re Leaving Money on the Table 


If Your Business is 80 Percent Group Class Revenue, You’re Leaving Money on the Table

The group class is quintessential to CrossFit, and has proven to be a great tool to build community. Heck, it’s the reason many clients say they’re still doing CrossFit after three, five, or even 10 years. But experts in the industry say, from a business perspective, if you’re 100 percent reliant on group class revenue, you’re leaving money on the table and hurting your bottom line, especially during COVID-19.

The details: While there’s no magic formula for determining what percentage of an affiliate’s gross revenue should come from group classes, Chris Cooper, the founder of gym mentorship company TwoBrain Business, who has been mentoring gym owners for nine years, said you should aim to generate significant revenue streams beyond the group class.

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The "Lifter's Wedge"

Great lifts start from a great set-up and in the case of a back squat, the "lifter's wedge" can help you go through a checklist of sorts to make sure that you are set up to exert maximum force. This post from Squat University encourages you to take your time getting under the bar and set the wedge before unracking, even with light weight.




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A 10-minute Pyramid Rowing Workout

Shane Farmer from Dark Horse Rowing is back with a 10-minute workout to help you learn how to exert the most force possible on the rower. Spoiler: there's a surprise finish too.



The Ultimate Keto Bundle From ButcherBox

Through January 18, new ButcherBox subscription members will get early access to ButcherBox's Ultimate Keto Bundle (one pork butt, two pounds of grass-fed/grass-finished ground beef, and three pounds of bone-in chicken thighs) in their first box.



Marinated Tofu with Brussels Sprouts and Farro

The soul of this recipe comes from the ginger and tamari marinade that gives crispy tofu a sweet and savory flavor. Use firm tofu, which will soak up the flavors quickly, then sear it to get those browned edges while keeping it soft and tender inside. And, here's a tip: get a head start by cooking your grains a day or two before. In the spring, try swapping the brussels sprouts for raw cucumbers.


Chalk Up Highlights is our section dedicated to celebrating our community’s wins in the gym. Follow @ChalkUpHighlights and submit your highlight to [email protected] to be featured.

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