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Reebok Gives Affiliate $6000 to Pay It Forward

Morning Chalk Up

April 17   |   POWERED BY


Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up.

In today’s edition:

  • CrossFit Winter Park offers free memberships to human trafficking survivors.
  • Reebok helps CrossFit Illuminati with two $3000 gift cards.
  • Tommy Marquez takes on the future of the Quarterfinals.
  • How would top Quarterfinals athletes fare in a theoretical “CrossFit Games”?
  • Shark Attack survivor uses the Open to raise money for an eight-year-old amputee in need.
  • Hot off the press! Commemorate the 2020 CrossFit Games season with a Morning Chalk Up limited edition print newspaper. On sale now.

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

QUOTE OF THE DAY + Send us a Quote

“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson

  CrossFit Winter Park Gifts Memberships to Female Sex Trafficking Survivors 

CrossFit Winter Park Gifts Memberships to Female Sex Trafficking Survivors

The community at CrossFit Winter Park in Winter Park, FL has always used Christmas as a time to give back to those in need. Until this year, that meant donating all kinds of gifts to a chosen family in need to “brighten their holidays,” explained Stephanie Nickitas, the owner of CrossFit Winter Park for the past seven-and-a-half years. This year, they took a slightly different, yet possibly even more impactful, approach to the holidays.

The details: CrossFit Winter Park members rallied together and donated goods and gifts to Samaritan Village, a local non-profit organization and safe home that offers a holistic, trauma-informed therapeutic program to survivors of human trafficking. Many of the women stay in the program for 12 to 18 months.

  • “Our members really went above and beyond. They always do. I don’t think they thought we’d come up with as much stuff for the women as we did. We gave them everything from pajamas, to slippers and bathrobes, to makeup supplies, gratitude journals, personal planners, calendars…all the way to basic house supplies, like toilet paper and cleaning supplies,” Nickitas said.

What happened next: The feedback, from both Samaritan Village and the women currently living in the safe house who received the various gifts, was so overwhelmingly grateful and positive that Nickitas started to wonder what else she could do.

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  • The newest Rogue Challenge is live now. Athletes can take on the Pump-N-Row Challenge now through April 19 at 8PM ET for a chance to win $5K or other prizes.
  • CrossFit Sanitas, Eric Roza’s box, hired a new head coach. Giancarlo Granziani will join Sanitas on May 3 after coaching at Reebok CrossFit ONE in Boston for the past three years.
  • The European CrossFit Masters Championship is a three-day CrossFit event that will take place in the Storefjell mountains in Norway, February 2022. It will be hosted by Aktivitet Norge in partnership with Prepared Programming and Eleiko Sport .
  • TrueForm was announced as the Official Treadmill for the Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge on May 28-30, 2021. Athletes at the CrossFit Semifinal will be tested in events that include the TrueForm Trainer. ⁣
  • Hafthor Bjornsson will face Simon Vallily, a heavyweight pro boxer with a 17-3-1 record, in a four-round bout in Dubai on May 28.
  CrossFit Winter Park Gifts Memberships to Female Sex Trafficking Survivors 

Reebok Helps CrossFit Illuminati Pay it Forward with Two $3000 Gift Cards

On Thursday, Morning Chalk Up published a heartwarming story about Jason Kessler, owner of CrossFit Illuminati in Houston, TX, who purchased 52 pairs of Reebok Nanos for members who’d supported the affiliate through not only COVID-19 but also a 2018 fire that destroyed nearly the entire gym.

Inspired after reading the story in Thursday’s newsletter, Reebok reached out to offer a $3000 gift card to CrossFit Illuminati to buy additional Reebok merchandise for the gym. Reebok also included a second $3000 gift card to “donate to a different affiliate who appreciates their members as much” as Illuminati does.

The announcement was made on Morning Chalk Up’s Instagram Friday afternoon.

One big thing: Even though they’re no longer the CrossFit Games title sponsor, Reebok’s president Matt O’Toole reiterated their commitment to the CrossFit community back in March: “Make no mistake, Reebok remains committed to supporting the athletes, affiliate partners, and the global CrossFit community.”

  • Reebok also indicated that it would now have more resources to focus on supporting the broader CrossFit community now that their contractual obligation to the Games are over.
  • Today’s pay it forward campaign is another clear example of that.

Good News is our weekly round-up of positive stories around the affiliate community. Are you opening a new gym, expanding a current location, offering new classes, or is your box running a fundraiser? Send us a tip to be featured.

  • Autism MANA CrossFit Class: At Fit Fast Strong CrossFit in Pueblo West, CO, Kevin Blunt created a new nine-week class where athletes on the autism spectrum can find a positive environment to exercise while simultaneously working on peer relationships, social skills and repetitive behavior.
  • Dale King Employs those in recovery in Portsmouth, OH: After returning from two tours in Iraq, Dale King returned to Portsmouth, OH in the midst of an opioid epidemic. He opened PSKC CrossFit to help the community and later brought a natural soap and skincare business to his hometown in Doc Spartan. During the pandemic he also developed a kettlebell manufacturing business. All of his employees are in one stage of recovery or another.
  • CrossFit Orillia pivots during pandemic: In Orillia, Ontario, Canada, CrossFit Orillia made use of a $50,000 business grant and increased its profits by 20% by expanding its online offerings.
  • Four athletes at Vandenberg Air Force created a CrossFit training group and trained for the Open together. All four, Anthony Golembeck, Alexander DeCastro, Katrina Hartman, Gabrielle McClelland made the Quarterfinals.
  • Soccer star, Trish Evangelista, opens her dream CrossFit box. After graduating from college from Farmingdale State College, Evangelista bought and now runs Babylon CrossFit.
  Tommy Tackles The Future Of Quarterfinals 


Tommy Tackles The Future Of Quarterfinals

I had a thought while aimlessly struggling through a set of pistols last weekend.

Quarterfinals have a huge potential to be a community builder in the future.

Maybe I was still getting my wits back after 60 GHD sit-ups, or maybe I was feeling particularly coltish as a result of just being able to compete again, but I couldn’t shake the feeling that this inclusion of an additional round somehow had captured something that I think many people — myself included — had been looking for.

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  A Combined Leaderboard: How Did the Top Quarterfinals Athletes Compare? 


A Combined Leaderboard: How Did the Top Quarterfinals Athletes Compare?

The next stage of the 2021 CrossFit Games season will take place in late-May and June and involve 10 Semifinal events (as well as a “Catchall” event). Some will take place in person, some online. But at the end of this stage, 38 men and women will qualify for the CrossFit in Madison, WI.

If the Quarterfinal leaderboards were combined, how would the top athletes compare to one another?

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  Shark Attack Survivor Uses The Open to Raise Funds for Eight-Year-Old Amputee in Need 

Shark Attack Survivor Uses The Open to Raise Funds for Eight-Year-Old Amputee in Need

Caleb Swanepoel, like many adaptive athletes, competed in his first CrossFit Open this year. But Swanepoel added another element to his competition: a fundraiser. The lower-extremity athlete used the Adaptive Open to raise funds for an eight-year-old amputee, Elijah, who needs a new prosthetic leg.

Swanepoel’s story: Swanepoel, a South African athlete, lost his leg in a shark attack in June of 2015, body surfing with his siblings.

  • “We were catching big waves… and I was slightly ahead of my brothers to go and catch this big wave, and as I came over the crest of one of the waves… I saw a Great White. I turned to my brothers and shouted ‘There’s a shark in the water, swim!” he says. “I had this feeling in the back of my mind that, you know, something was going to happen.”
  • “[The shark] slammed into me, pulled me out of the water, and bit my leg completely off. Long story short, throughout that whole encounter in the water, I didn’t think I was going to make it.”

Typically, a bite like the one Swanepoel suffered severs an artery; normally, he says, victims of this kind of above-the-knee attack bleed out in two minutes.

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Healthy Chicken Pot Pie

This delicious lightened-up chicken pot pie uses dairy-free alternatives to butter and cream, so you don't feel weighed down during your next WOD. For when you just need some comfort food.




Jeans Designed to Move In

"Comfortable jeans can't look good, say" people who don't know what they're talking about. Revtown took Italian milled denim and infused it with the same stuff used in football uniforms to create soft, comfortable, stretchy jeans that still have the designer look.



Your Overhead Shoulder Position

Improper overhead positioning is the most common mistake made in Olympic lifts. Sage Burgener, of Burgener Strength, demonstrates the correct position and shows you how to check if you are there.



Your Free Steak

If meat was in a contest, we think steak would be the GOAT. And right now ButcherBox are giving new members a Steak Sampler (two ribeyes and four sirloins) free in their first box. Morning Chalk Up readers also get $10 off. This deal is only available for five days so grab it while you can.



Spartan Sweepstake for a Trip to Hawaii

Beaches? Yes. Jungles? Sure. Spear throwing? Now we're talking. Win an epic Spartan race escape to the island of Oahu. Relax on the beach, take part in the festivities, and get your workout in with free entry to all of Spartan's races across the weekend.


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.

10/7 - 10/8: Koda Iron Games (Lafayette, CO)
10/8: Mayhem & Massacre @ Infinite Fitness & Health (Wharton, NJ)
10/8 - 10/9: Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge Festival (MACC FEST) (West Friendship, MD)
10/8: Fall Brawl at CrossFit Lehigh Valley (Allentown, PA)
10/8 - 10/9: MACC FEST (West Friendship, MD)
10/8: Rua Rumble II (Frankfort, IL)
10/8: Nightmare On Wod Street (Spring Lake, MI)
10/8: The X Games (Brooklawn, NJ)
10/14 - 10/16: 3F Throwdown (Poreč, Croatia)
10/15: Girls Gone Rx Belleville (Belleville, Canada)
10/15: Ragin Games 2022 (Lafayette, LA)
10/15: Wodtoberfest (Owosso, MI)
10/15: PAINKLLR Nashville (Nashville, TN)
10/15: Ragin Games (Lafayette, LA)
10/15: 7th Annual Kilo Crushfest (Hampton, VA)
10/15: Girls Gone Rx Omaha (Gretna, NE)
10/15: Girls Gone Rx Dallas (Dallas, Texas)
10/15: Diamond K Classic (Birmingham, AL)
10/15: Girls Gone Rx Richmond (Richmond, Canada)
10/15: Girls Gone Rx San Diego (Alpine, CA)
10/15: Girls Gone Rx Iowa (Des Miones, IA)
10/15: Girls Gone Rx Southern Illinois (Highland Robinson, IL)
10/15: Girls Gone Rx DC (Alexandria, VA)
10/15: Girls Gone Rx Charlotte (Charlotte, NC)
10/15: Girls Gone Rx Newport News (Newport News, VA)
10/15: Mid Atlantic Masters Classic (Abingdon, MD)
10/15: Bridgetown Throwdown (City of Industry, CA)
10/21 - 10/23: Battledrome Championship (Milan, Italy)
10/22: 8th Annual Crossfit Pittsfield Fall Brawl (Pittsfield, MA)
10/22: Doomsday 2022 (Palm Springs, CA)
10/22: The Humble Games Fall Throwdown (Hanover, MD)
10/22: Festivus Games Pairs – Same-Sex or Mixed-Sex (Savannah, GA)
10/22: Goblin Gauntlet – CrossFit Sandy (Sandy, UT)
10/22: 8th annual fall brawl (Pittsfield, MA)
10/22: Festivals Games – CrossFit 906 Ishpeming, MI (Ishpeming, MI)
10/22 - 10/23: Rep It Out (Sheffield, England)
10/22: Clash at the Creek 2022 (Knoxville, TN)
10/22: 2022 Arsenal Throwdown (Pittsburgh, PA)
10/22: Ironclad (League City, TX)
10/22: Festivus Games (Waukesha, WI)
10/22: Scream and Clean 2 (Danbury, CT)
10/22: SE TEX Masters Fall Classic 2022 (Cypress, TX)
10/22: Black and Brewed (Huntsville, AL)
10/22: Festivus Games – Pairs (Savannah, GA)
10/22: Dreamland Games 3 (same sex pairs) (Portsmouth, OH)
10/22: Festivus Games – Teams @ Crossfit Clan (Parsippany, NJ)
10/29 - 10/30: Mayhem & Massacre @ CrossFit Black Hive West (Jacksonville, FL)
10/29: Heartland Games (Kearney, NE)
10/29 - 10/30: Chi-Town Throwdown (Elmhurst, IL)
10/29 - 10/30: The Vanguard (Lakeland, FL)
10/30 - 11/20: CHLKDUP Box League – Nashville (Nashville, TN)
11/1 - 11/21: MFLH X FFTF Partner Series Online Qualifier (New York, NY)
11/5 - 11/6: Reignited Games (Wilmington, NC)
11/5: Fall’s Fittest Partner Throwdown (Amherst, OH)
11/5: Best of the Wurst (New Braunfels, TX)
11/12: Girls Gone Rx Salt Lake City (West Salt Lake, UT)
11/12: Girls Gone Rx Mesa (Mesa, AZ)
11/12: CrossFit Exodus Throwdown (Bridgeport, TX)
11/19: Babes & Beasts TURF Games 2022 (Port Saint Lucie, FL)
11/19: Cactus Classic 2022 (Phoenix, AZ)
12/2 - 12/4: WheelWod Games (Raleigh, NC)
12/3 - 12/4: Torino Challenge (Moncalieri (TO), Italy)
12/3: Reindeer Rumble (Ocala, FL)

See all upcoming events

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