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The Emma Tall Situation

Morning Chalk Up

June 26   |   POWERED BY


Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up.

In today’s edition:

  • Last chance qualifier, Nicole Mghenyi, says this is her year.
  • Tommy Marquez takes on the Emma Tall controversy.
  • This Week in CrossFit.
  • FiiT For Life Seeks to have exercise recognized as a medical treatment in the UK.
  • A collegiate study that isn’t about the dangers of CrossFit.
  • Last Chance to Enter: Be treated like a WIT-sponsored athlete and receive new gear drops every eight weeks for an entire year. Join Rx now for $1 to enter the draw.
  • The Morning Chalk Up is hiring a Social Media Manager and Homepage Editor, and Customer Service Representative.

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

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“I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.” - Thomas A. Edison

  “This Is My Year”: Nicole Mghenyi’s Final Push To Qualify For The CrossFit Games 

“This Is My Year”: Nicole Mghenyi’s Final Push To Qualify For The CrossFit Games

At the close of the Granite Games, two well-known Games athletes, Kristi Eramo and Steph Chung sat in the position to qualify for the Last Chance Qualifier. But there was one other name on that leaderboard that many saw for the first time.

One big thing: If you looked at the Granite Games leaderboard and thought “where did Nicole Mghenyi come from,” you weren’t alone.

  • Over the course of the weekend at Granite Games, Mghenyi catapulted herself to the top of the leaderboard within a few events and by the final day, it was looking like she might be a contender to punch her ticket for a rookie year at the Games.
  • Unfortunately, two finishes outside the top ten on day three moved her outside the top five and into sixth place overall behind Caroline Conners by 30 points.
  • However, her sixth place finish earned her one of three spots in the last chance qualifier that would give her one last opportunity to prove her fitness and lock down a ticket to the Games.

Always the bridesmaid…now the bride: While Mghenyi hasn’t stepped foot on the floor at the CrossFit Games, she was the alternate for the prestigious OC3 Black team, which took fourth in 2019.

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Enter to Win Ascent Swag Signed by Katrin Davidsdottir

Enter to Win Ascent Swag Signed by Katrin Davidsdottir

Katrin has partnered with Ascent protein as she prepares to compete at the 2021 CrossFit Games.

The 2x Fittest Woman on Earth has competed seven times in the Games, and placed in the top five the last 5 years in a row.

“I love competing and working hard,” said Katrin. “It’s an opportunity for me to push myself further and see how far I can go.”

Ascent has some sweet swag signed by Katrin to giveaway before the Games.

Just follow this link and fill out your information for a chance to win.


  • Mid-Year Sale: The WOD Life’s mid-year sale is going on now through the end of the weekend.
  • MUST WATCH: Earlier this week, ABC News featured a story on Michelle Duboc, a CrossFit coach and co-owner of CrossFit Unbounded in Miami. She posted a video doing Murph in May at nine months pregnant that went viral, in part at least, because her husband and some male coaches and members strapped medicine balls to their stomachs to experience the workout similarly to her. The videohas 9 million views on Instagram.
    •  Duboc: “It was pretty cool to see them actually want to try it and to see kind of what it feels like.”
  • Dani Speegle recapped the 6K Ruck Runat the West Coast Classic, an event that, due to the extreme heat in Las Vegas, almost ended Speegle’s Games season.
    • Speegle: “I hit that second lap and at the beginning I still felt great — but not too long in I started to feel lightheaded, and I had started to get this weird tunnel vision sensation. I started to tell myself ‘lean into the pain — it’s okay. We’ve been here. We’ve practiced this.’ My body still felt good just my head wasn’t working. Still, I told myself ‘you’re fine: Everything is fine.’ *insert intense narrator voice.* — Everything was not fine.” ⠀
  • The NOBULL CrossFit Games Collection is available now.⠀
  • Blues City CrossFit, based out of St. Louis, MO, qualified for the CrossFit Games in the team division at the West Coast Classic Last weekend, taking the fifth-place spot. Hear all of the behind-the-scenes details on The Blues City CrossFit show.
  Tommy Tackles the Emma Tall Situation 


Tommy Tackles the Emma Tall Situation

I am going to start this week’s edition by stating very clearly that the Emma Tall situation was a lose-lose situation for everyone involved.

By everyone involved I mean Emma Tall (read: athletes) and CrossFit, the two sides of a dilemma that quite honestly stands as a stain in the athlete-sport relations history for the CrossFit Games, and comes at a time when the rebuild process for the most part was going fairly smoothly.

Tall lost a coveted Games spot, one that was declared at multiple junctures to be hers, and one that she privately celebrated before it was rescinded days after the fact to which she had no other recourse than an appeal that everyone knew had zero success.

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  This Week in CrossFit 

This Week in CrossFit

What are we going to do this weekend with no Semifinals to watch?! I’m sure we’ll think of something as we get ready for next week’s Last Chance Qualifier. As we continue to digest how freaking fit athletes have become over the years, let’s also work on putting down the sanitation spray and walk away from the bumper plates as gyms revamp their COVID cleaning protocols.

Games Bound Athletes:

The West Coast Classic

  1. Cole Sager (583) / Bethany Shadburne (632) / Invictus (603)
  2. Noah Ohlsen (548) / Kari Pearce (628) / Invictus Unconquerable (595)
  3. Sean Sweeney (513) / Danielle Brandon (573) / Ohio Brutes (539)
  4. Will Moorad (489) / Dani Speegle (542) / Backcountry Black (530)
  5. Brandon Luckett (481) / Regan Huckaby (528) / Blues City Athletics (528)
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  “FiiT For Life” Seeks to Have Exercise Recognized as Medical Treatment in the UK and Beyond 

“FiiT For Life” Seeks to Have Exercise Recognized as Medical Treatment in the UK and Beyond

Six years ago, a member of CrossFit Deviant in Derby in the UK showed up at the gym “super upset” because his mother was about to undergo cancer treatment

  • “She had gone to her GP and her GP told her she needed to lose weight and get fit or this cancer will come back. And this woman, who was in her mid-50s asked, ‘What do I do? Where do I go?’ And the GP said, ‘I don’t know. Now off you go,’” said Athalie Redwood-Mills, the co-owner and coach at CrossFit Deviant, and a Senior Lecturer in the Sport and Exercise Science Department at Nottingham Trent University in the UK.
  • “It was insane that her doctor said that to her. What do you mean you can’t tell her where to go to get fit?”

Lightbulb moment: Hearing this story was a “turning point” for Redwood-Mills, and is part of what led her to start FiiT For Life, a charity that offers world class training through their CPD (continuing professional development) courses for health and fitness professionals.

  • The second reason Redwood-Mills started FiiT For Life was that she noticed a trend among CrossFit coaches: They want to help everyone but sometimes lack confidence, and the necessary skills when it comes to working with special populations, such as people with cancer, diabetes, heart disease, neuromuscular disease, she explained. “And it can be expensive to get qualified in those specific areas,” Redwood-Mills added.
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  A Collegiate Study That Isn’t About How Dangerous CrossFit Is 

A Collegiate Study That Isn’t About How Dangerous CrossFit Is

The Department of Human Performance and Health at the University of South Carolina Upstate wants to know a little more about the CrossFit community, how it exercises, how often, diet and psychological effects of doing CrossFit.

While CrossFit has a checkered past with collegiate studies (see below), this survey was not funded by an external organization and its purpose is to be able to compare CrossFit athletes to other types of exercises.

  • Fun reassuring fact: The study is being conducted by a CrossFit athlete who works out at a South Carolina affiliate.
  • Even more fun fact: There’s a CrossFit athlete who’s a professor of exercise science at a University. Not likely the only one out there but it’s nice to see CrossFit’s influence in upper academia.

If you want to participate in this 23 question survey, give this a click

So why don’t CrossFitters like collegiate studies? Because in 2013, Ohio State University published a study erroneously concluding that CrossFit was dangerous. They went so far as to falsify the data. If you want to know more you can read this overview.

  • Cliff Notes: The study was retracted for falsifying the data, the author of the study resigned from Ohio State University, a federal judge awarded CrossFit $4 million in legal fees alone. They eventually settled out of court for an unknown sum.
  • The judge’s conclusion: The NSCA (who published the study) “deceived and continue[s] to deceive the public and consumers regarding the safety and effectiveness of CrossFit training.”


This Aerobic Capacity Running Workout

Summers here, and it's time to get outside. Hit the road (or trail) and give this 30-minute endurance workout from Chris Hinshaw a try. Pace yourself to start, or your easy, moderate, and fast paces will look awful similar by the last round.




Which Omega-3 is Right For You

Omega-3s help build muscle, reduce inflammation, and speed up recovery. But if you're performing high-intensity exercise regularly (sound familiar?) you need a fish oil built to handle it. Take this quiz and see which Omega-3 product is the perfect fit for you and your lifestyle.



The Kneeling Squat

Add this into your workouts so you learn to use your hips when you squat and stop relying on your lower back to take all the heat. Get on your knees and make a conscious effort to keep your spine neutral and your torso upright to get the full effect.



Your Aerobic Engine

Train Your Weakness has a new course to improve your aerobic endurance in just three easy-to-follow workouts a week for eight weeks. Make this the summer you crush those summer runs, swims, and bike rides.



Just Icing an Injury

Tried and tested it may be, but the results are in...just icing an injury isn't going to help. Learn the P.O.L.I.C.E method of injury rehab and get back to full fitness faster than a speeding cruiser.


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.

9/29 - 10/25: Fittest of the Coast Coastal Qualifier powered by Victory Grips (Charleston, SC)
9/30 - 10/1: Iron Anchor Throwdown (Batavia, OH)
9/30 - 10/2: October Challenge (Fiuggi, Italy)
10/1 - 10/2: Fittest in the Fall (Indianapolis, IN)
10/1: Guava Games (Tampa, FL)
10/1: Masters Mayhem (Kilgore, TX)
10/1: WODtoberfest 2022 (Saint Clairsville, OH)
10/1: Battle of the Vikings (Frederick, MD)
10/1: North Dallas Rumble (Dallas, TX)
10/1: Warrior Games 2022 (Suffield, CT)
10/1 - 10/2: Southie Showdown (Boston, MA)
10/1: West Town Throwdown (Chicago, IL)
10/1: Legends of the Falls 2022 (Gadsden, AL)
10/1: Lansing’s Strongest 2022 (Lansing, MI)
10/2 - 10/16: CHLKDUP Box League – Chattanooga (Chattanooga, TN)
10/2: The IronWorkz Gauntlet (Medina, OH)
10/2: IronWorkz Gauntlet (Medina, OH)
10/2: Battle in the Berg (Newberg, OR)
10/7 - 10/8: Koda Iron Games (Lafayette, CO)
10/8: The X Games (Brooklawn, NJ)
10/8: Nightmare On Wod Street (Spring Lake, MI)
10/8: Rua Rumble II (Frankfort, IL)
10/8 - 10/9: MACC FEST (West Friendship, MD)
10/8: Fall Brawl at CrossFit Lehigh Valley (Allentown, PA)
10/8 - 10/9: Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge Festival (MACC FEST) (West Friendship, MD)
10/8: Mayhem & Massacre @ Infinite Fitness & Health (Wharton, NJ)
10/14 - 10/16: 3F Throwdown (Poreč, Croatia)
10/15: Girls Gone Rx Belleville (Belleville, Canada)
10/15: Diamond K Classic (Birmingham, AL)
10/15: Girls Gone Rx Dallas (Dallas, Texas)
10/15: Girls Gone Rx Omaha (Gretna, NE)
10/15: 7th Annual Kilo Crushfest (Hampton, VA)
10/15: Ragin Games (Lafayette, LA)
10/15: PAINKLLR Nashville (Nashville, TN)
10/15: Wodtoberfest (Owosso, MI)
10/15: Ragin Games 2022 (Lafayette, LA)
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)
10/15: Girls Gone Rx Richmond (Richmond, Canada)
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: 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: Festivus Games – Teams @ Crossfit Clan (Parsippany, NJ)
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: Festivus Games Pairs – Same-Sex or Mixed-Sex (Savannah, GA)
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: 2022 Arsenal Throwdown (Pittsburgh, PA)
10/29 - 10/30: Chi-Town Throwdown (Elmhurst, IL)
10/29 - 10/30: The Vanguard (Lakeland, FL)
10/29: Heartland Games (Kearney, NE)
10/29 - 10/30: Mayhem & Massacre @ CrossFit Black Hive West (Jacksonville, 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)

See all upcoming events

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