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An Historic Year for Canada at the 2023 CrossFit Games

Morning Chalk Up

August 11   |   POWERED BY


Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up.

In today’s edition:

  • Canadian athletes posted their strongest ever showing as a group at the 2023 Games
  • Five ways to improve your gymnastics skills for CrossFit
  • A life-changing surgery led John Prescott to invest even further in adaptive athletics
  • Get an inside look into what it’s like working with Wild Health
  • Review of the Week: 247 Line by Represent
  • And, Moritz Fiebig’s Workout of the Week
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“I’ve proven that I belong. We’re just getting started.” - 17-year-old Olivia Kerstetter, the 2023 CrossFit Games Rookie of the Year, after her first career test win as an individual in the Echo Thruster Final

  Oh Canada: How Canadian Athletes Outperformed Country’s Population, Open Registration at the 2023 NOBULL CrossFit Games  

Oh Canada: How Canadian Athletes Outperformed Country’s Population, Open Registration at the 2023 NOBULL CrossFit Games

The 2023 NOBULL CrossFit Games were a historic one for Canada, as the country from the north with a total population that is just 11 percent of the United States, managed to snag three out of six individual medals in Madison, WI last week, as compared to the United States whose only podium finisher was bronze medalist Arielle Loewen.

On top of Jeff Adler’s gold and Pat Vellner and Emma Lawson’s silvers, Brent Fikowski and Emily Rolfe—fourth and 12th respectively—also had impressive showings. Further, Canada picked up six additional medals in the age group division, including 64-year-old Susan Clarke, who won her sixth title.

Remind me: Canada has always been a force at the Games, especially on the men’s side, however, this is only the third time in history they have won gold in the individual division. The other two Canadians to stand atop the podium are James FitzGerald in 2007 and Camille Leblanc Bazinet in 2014.

  • Further, the only other times Canada has had multiple athletes on the podium was in 2021, when Vellner and Fikowski were second and third respectively, and at the first Games in 2007, when FitzGerald won and Brett Marshall was second.

What they’re saying: Vellner and Rolfe both said they felt Canadian pride all week in Madison as Canada had what can only be considered their best performance in history.

  • “I think we all want to succeed, but I want those guys right behind me. And if it can’t be me, I want it to be them. We have a lot of national pride and have a lot of fun together, especially the PB&J crew,” said Vellner about Adler and Fikowski, who he competed with on the team that won this year’s Wodapalooza in Miami, FL.
  • Rolfe added: “I think we (Canadian athletes) feel connected because we are always lesser in numbers than the USA. But we hold our own even though we were fewer.”

Vellner’s long-time coach Michele Letendre, a six-time Canadian Games athlete herself, said she couldn’t have been more proud watching all of the Canadian athletes excel against the world last week: “With Brent (Fikowski) leading the PFAA and Patrick (Vellner) being heavily involved, their legacy will go way beyond just Canadian athletes. Emma (Lawson) is level headed, focused and so so talented. The future is really bright,” Letendre said.

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The Fifth Fittest Man on Earth, Dallin Pepper, is getting on the Games test recap train and wants your suggestions about his approach. Hit him up now.

Bjorgvin Karl Gudmundsson, who competed in his tenth CrossFit Games this year, did so under pretty tough circumstances, nursing an ongoing back injury. In a five-part series on Instagram, he explains what happened and why he decided to lift just the minimum required weight during the Olympic Total. 

The Madison State Journal published a cool photo essay from the Games. Check out all their great images!

Local Love: Winner of the boys 14-15 division, Jeremie Jourdan of Denair, was featured in the Turlock Journal. Jourdan is the second CrossFit Turlock to win the CrossFit Games, following Cindy Kelley who won the women’s 50-54 division in 2015.

ICYMI: A look back at what we learned from the 2023 Team Division.

  Five Ways to Improve Gymnastics for CrossFit  


Five Ways to Improve Gymnastics for CrossFit

Bodyweight movements (also called gymnastics in CrossFit), are often the limiting modality for everyday athletes training in affiliates. Most athletes have 60 minutes per day to get warmed up, workout and cool-down before going back to their busy lives outside the gym.

With most affiliates writing their programming for general fitness development, it can be difficult for individuals to navigate their personal journey within the mold of a group template. Our goal today is to provide a blueprint for you, so that you can make small changes within your training routine to aid in progressing gymnastics.

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  How a Life Changing Brain Surgery Led John Prescott to Double Down on Working with Adaptive Athletes  

How a Life Changing Brain Surgery Led John Prescott to Double Down on Working with Adaptive Athletes

Gym owner John Prescott has always been passionate about coaching adaptive athletes. This passion led him to connect with leaders in adaptive athletics like Kevin Ogar and help found WheelWOD, a company that offers programming and hosts the popular WheelWOD Games for adaptive athletes.

Factor in that one of his coaches has a neurological impairment, while his business partner Kristy Hagan, is missing her arm below the elbow, and his gym—Neuse River CrossFit in Raleigh, NC—has long been a hub for adaptive athletes of all kinds, from wheelchair athletes to amputees to short-statured athletes.

Despite his heavy involvement in the adaptive community, Prescott himself was able-bodied.

Until he wasn’t.

Seventeen months ago, Prescott was diagnosed with a cavernous malformation in his brain, which led to a brain bleed requiring surgery that left his motor functions severely diminished to the point that Prescott had to learn how to walk, eat, and even talk again.

Doctors told him they didn’t think he’d be able to do anything physical a year post-op, but Prescott has exceeded all expectations.

Though he’s still only what he estimates to be 65 to 70 percent better, he’s hoping within three to five years he will be closer to 100 percent.

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  I Tried Wild Health’s Precision Medicine Service – Here Are My Thoughts  

I Tried Wild Health’s Precision Medicine Service – Here Are My Thoughts

“Elevate Your Athleticism.”

If you watched the 2023 NOBULL CrossFit Games this weekend, you most likely saw that phrase in an ad for Wild Health, a genetics-based Precision Medicine program run by a “bunch of CrossFitting physicians.”

But what does “elevate your athleticism” actually mean? What does it mean to level up with Wild Health as a CrossFitter?

I’m here to give you an inside look into what it’s like working with Wild Health and how they can not only help you elevate your athleticism and fitness, but optimize your overall health.

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  Review of the Week: 247 Line by Represent  

Review of the Week: 247 Line by Represent

You may have seen Christian Harris and the Move Fast Lift Heavy 247 team rocking the 247 line by Represent all season long. They looked sleek and comfy, so we had to do some research.

Represent is a luxury streetwear brand, which has a mass following and attracted a celebrity fan base (Machine Gun Kelly, Justin Bieber & many more) with its high-quality materials and relaxed designs. The brand is now making moves within the CrossFit and functional fitness spaces with their 247 range – notably Christian Harris’s CrossFit Games team, CrossFit Move Fast Live Heavy 247, has an ode to the brand in their name (Chris is a Represent 247 athlete himself).

We snagged a few pieces of the 247 Line and here are our key takeaways:

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  Moritz Fiebig’s Workout of the Week  

Moritz Fiebig’s Workout of the Week

Today’s workout is programmed by German athlete Moritz Fiebig, a two-time CrossFit Games qualifier and third-place finisher in the 2023 Europe Semifinal. At the 2023 Games, Fiebig took 21st place, narrowly missing the top 20 and a chance to compete on Sunday. His top finishes at the Games included fifth-place in Test 2: Pig Chipper and fourth place in Test 9: Olympic Total where he lifted a combined 642 pounds.

Moritz Fiebig

For Time:

500-meter Row
30 Power Cleans, 132.2/99.2 pounds (60/45kg)
10 Burpee Box Jump Overs, 24/20 inches
500m Row
20 Power Cleans, 132.2/99.2 pounds (60/45kg)
20 Burpee Box Jump Overs, 24/20 inches
500m Row
10 Power Cleans, 132.2/99.2 pounds (60/45kg)
30 Burpee Box Jump Overs, 24/20 inches

Time Cap: 18 minutes

Scaling Options: Athletes can reduce weight on the barbell, adjust the calories on the rower, and/or jump over a shorter box.

Advice from Moritz: “Always fight to keep moving. You can either do small sets of touch-and-go or quick singles to get through the power cleans or mix both strategies.”
To inquire about submitting an upcoming workout of the week, shoot us a note.



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Celebrating a PR, hosting a fundraiser, this, that, or otherwise. Send us a tip.

CrossFit Leixlip in Kildare, Ireland mourns the loss of Michael, a 9:30am class regular.

  • “Michael always made everyone feel welcome and at ease, especially any newbies to the Crew.”
  • A Memorial WOD is in the works to honor the long-time member.
9/23: Ladies of Power: Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh, PA)
9/23: Warrior Games 2023 (Suffield, CT)
9/23: Thrive Throwdown (Lynchburg, VA)
9/23: Warrior Games 2023 (Suffield, CT)
9/23: The Gulf Coast Games (Pinellas Park, FL)
9/23 - 9/24: Madrid Fitness Challenge (San Lorenzo del Escorial, Madrid, Spain)
10/6 - 10/8: Marbella Championship (Marbella, Spain)
10/7: Battle of Branded One at Redstone CrossFit (Littleton, CO)
10/13 - 10/15: Midwest Championship (Rochester, MN)
10/13 - 10/15: Midwest Championship (Rochester, MN)
10/14: Strength and Speed (Feasterville, PA)
10/14 - 10/15: The Vanguard (Lakeland, FL)
10/14 - 10/15: 059 Classic (Modena, Italy)
10/20 - 10/21: AAYMCA CrossFit Throwdown (Anderson, SC)
10/20 - 10/21: AAYMCA CrossFit Throwdown (Anderson, SC)
10/21: Festivus Games – Pairs (Savannah, GA)
10/27 - 10/29: Oslo Throwdown (Oslo, Norway)
10/29 - 11/19: CHLKDUP BOX LEAGUE – NASH (Nashville, TN)
10/29 - 11/19: CHLKDUP BOX LEAGUE – BHAM (Birmingham, AL)
11/4 - 11/5: Costa Barcelona Fitness Challenge (Vilanova i la Geltrú, Barcelona, Spain)
11/4 - 11/5: Hold Fast Competition Individual (Gerenzano, Italy)
11/11: War of the Masters (Elkton, MD)

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