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Emma Cary is On The Comeback Trail

Morning Chalk Up

January 20   |   POWERED BY


Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up.

In today’s edition:

  • Breaking down the training camps at TYR Wodapalooza
  • Is two more than four? Looking at the workloads for individual and teams at TYR Wodapalooza
  • Emma Cary details her 2023 comeback plans and risk taking
  • The bumpy road to perfection for Reebok’s Nano X3
  • Elijah “EZ” Muhammad’s workout of the week
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“The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places.” - Ernest Hemingway

  Training Camps Represented at 2023 TYR Wodapalooza  

Training Camps Represented at 2023 TYR Wodapalooza

The presence and popularity of training camps was made very clear at the 2023 TYR Wodapalooza this past weekend. The rise of training camps for elite individual and team athletes has been a topic of much discussion in the CrossFit community as we see elite athletes jumping ship or making decisions to join competing camps.

Below is a breakdown of the representation each training camp had at Wodapalooza. The analysis is as comprehensive as possible, however it is not a complete list of athletes or camps.


One of the highlights of the weekend was witnessing longtime Invictus athlete Sam Dancer hit a two-rep-max front squat at 435 pounds, while competing with his teammates Joshua Al-chamaa and Jorge Fernandez. The team placed tenth overall and gave the audience a serious show. On the women’s side, fan favorite Dani Speegle looked ready to compete, hitting a 255 pound clean and jerk and winning the final elite individual event “Dirty Isabel.” Speegle finished on the podium in second place.

Brittany Weiss held her own as an individual finishing 11th overall and then as a teammate, alongside Devyn Kim and Jessi Smith. The team finished in 9th place with their best event being “Start Fast, Finish Faster” where they got fifth place. Also on the women’s side Invictus represented Team Invictus Chicks, which included Lauren Stallwood, Emily Rethwill and Allison Weiss.


Mayhem Athlete’s monster list of athletes represented well across all divisions, including Masters 45-49 winner Jason Grubb, who had zero finishes outside the top four and ended the weekend with a 164-point lead. Paige Powers also had an impressive top-place finish with a 28-point lead over second place Dani Speegle. Powers’ weekend may qualify as a breakout performance, showing great improvement over her Games appearance. Also in the women’s field, Andrea Nisler showed up as an individual, though she’s usually a regular on team Mayhem Freedom. She placed lower than 20th in multiple events, but pulled through at the end of the competition for an 8th place finish overall.

On the men’s side, new Mayhem athlete Roman Khrennikov fought for a silver medal at the end of two days of competition behind only Ricky Garard. Khrennikov had four top-five finishes, all of which were event wins. Only a few weeks into training in Cookeville, Khrennikov’s potential under new coaches and programming is endless. Gui Malheiros had a lackluster start to his competition, finishing three of the four events of day one in the bottom half. However, he predictably brought the thunder for the heavy lifting on day two, setting the record for the heaviest clean and jerk ever recorded in CrossFit competition.


The ladies of HWPO ran the show in the team division, with Mal O’Brien leading the show. O’Brien, who placed second at the Games in August, looked steady, focused, and confident on team “The Dottirs and MOB,” a deadly combination with the 2023 NOBULL CrossFit Open around the corner next month. Audiences got their first look at new camp recruits Katrin Davidsdottir and Amanda Barnhart since their switch from Comptrain. With such a strong background in swimming, Barnhart easily won her team – All American Girls – Chasing Waterfalls. Davidsdottir, along with O’Brien and Barnhart, showed massive improvements in weightlifting technique with the help of Aimee Everett.

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Grab a cup of joe: Join us for today’s Coffee Break Conversation with nine-time CrossFit Games athlete, CrossFit Seminar Staff and coach, James Hobart. He and Morning Chalk Up’s Preslie Hirsch will talk about how to improve your coaching, approaching your gym’s programming and more.

Athlete update: Snorri Baron Jonsson has a lengthy Instagram post detailing why he is no longer representing Roman Khrennikov.

Interesting: What does your Fran time say about your ability to crush the CrossFit Open?

Interesting read: Which states have the healthiest people, and which states have the least healthiest people?

Collab: Move Fast Lift Heavy and Rx Smart Gear have teamed up for two shirts and a new rope.

Comp update: HYROX’s World Series of Fitness Racing will have its European Championships this weekend, hosted at the MECC Maastricht.

  By The Numbers: How Two-Day Wodapalooza Gave Athletes as Much Volume as Four Days in 2022  


By The Numbers: How Two-Day Wodapalooza Gave Athletes as Much Volume as Four Days in 2022

When TYR Wodapalooza announced the individual competition would be just two days long this year, compared to four in 2022, skepticism arose:

  • Will a two-day competition provide enough tests to find the truly fittest male and female athlete?
  • Are two days enough to create a well-rounded and complete competition?

More generally, there was an assumption that the 2023 TYR Wodapalooza would be a whole lot easier than in years of the past.

In reality, this couldn’t have been further from the truth, as the two-day competition last weekend managed to pack in nine scored events, compared to eight in 2022, and put athletes through a balanced competition featuring as much volume as ever.

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  By The Numbers: How Two-Day Wodapalooza Gave Athletes as Much Volume as Four Days in 2022  

Taking Risks to Get on the Podium: Emma Cary Discusses Comeback Season for 2023

Morning Chalk Up’s Lauren Kalil sat down with Emma Cary and Matt Torres on the TYR Wodapalooza podcast stage after Cary placed 3rd in the Elite Individual Division. As her first live competition since returning from a back injury, the three discussed the process of returning to the competition floor, how Cary is learning to take more risks in her strategy, and even the importance of finding a passion outside of CrossFit.

Honorable mention to Morning Chalk Up’s Preslie Hirsch for subbing in mid-interview while Kalil had to excuse herself during an acid reflux attack.

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  Endless Testing and Learning From Mistakes: The Pursuit of Perfection Highlights Reebok’s Road to the Nano X3  

Endless Testing and Learning From Mistakes: The Pursuit of Perfection Highlights Reebok’s Road to the Nano X3

Reebok officially unveiled the Nano X3 on January 20 which marked a major moment for the apparel company. It celebrated the 13th version of the longtime functional fitness shoe, and it highlighted a continued emphasis on supporting the customer base.

Let’s first look back: Creating a shoe that can hold up to the most grueling CrossFit workouts for years on end is a monumental task. So is continually releasing shoes that appeal to the design sensibilities of top-level athletes and everyday consumers alike.

How does Reebok achieve this? The company takes an unorthodox approach. It actually gets the shoes out to key people very early in the process so that they can put them through the paces, so to speak.

  • “That’s one [factor] that we always look at is durability,” said Tal Short, Sr. Product Manager of Performance Footwear at Reebok. “So when people do test it, we get their shoes back and we check them out.”
  • “We have a whole testing team that looks at it, and they do a full analysis. This is what they did like, didn’t like. Here’s what their shoes… here’s where the wear and tear is. What are we gonna update?”

Testing the shoes every day in the gym is a major part of the process. Reebok’s team needs to know that the latest Nano can hold up to rope climbs, box jumps, and sprints while also providing stability in weightlifting events.

  • A fitting example could be 31 Heroes, the workout that honors 30 soldiers and 1 military K9 that died when a helicopter was downed in Afghanistan on August 6, 2011. Thousands of community members do this workout every August to raise money for the 31 Heroes Project.
  • The workout itself is a 31-minute partner AMRAP. One partner does a 400-meter run with a sandbag while the other works on eight thrusters (155/105), six rope climbs, and 11 box jumps (30/24).
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  Elijah “EZ” Muhammad's Workout of the Week  

Elijah “EZ” Muhammad's Workout of the Week

Today’s workout is programmed by Elijah EZ Muhammad, a two-time CrossFit Games veteran and co-founder of Project Onyx with Patrick Ford. This is the benchmark workout for the non-profit organization Project Onyx and is inspired by the journalistic work, “The 1619 Project”.

“The 1619 Project is a long-form journalism endeavor developed by Nikole Hannah-Jones, writers from The New York Times, and The New York Times Magazine which ‘aims to reframe the country’s history by placing the consequences of slavery and the contributions of Black Americans at the very center of the United States.’”

1619 Project: Powered by Project Onyx

  • 16:19 AMRAP
  • 16  Push Jerks (135/95 lbs)
  • 19  Ring Rows
  • 16 Overhead Squats (135/95 lbs)
  • 19 Barbell Jump Overs
  • 16 Explosive (Hands off the Ground) Push ups
  • 19 Cleans (135/95 lbs)
  • 16 Toes-to-bar

Scaling options: Athletes can modify the load to a weight that is mentally comfortable to do in unbroken sets, even if they choose to break up the sets, mentally, they should be comfortable. For the barbell jump overs, athletes can jump off one foot instead of two or  use a lower height. For the explosive push-ups, athletes can scale to regular push-ups where hands stay down or even do the reps with knees on the ground. Finally, for the toes-to-bar athletes can modify to knee raises or alternating V-Ups.

Some advice from EZ: “Try to get through the first round comfortably while maintaining a steady pace. After that,  decide if you can push the pace and where you feel you can add more intensity.” To inquire about submitting an upcoming workout of the week, shoot us a note.



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Why Every Gym Needs Performance Tracking

We recently wrote an article on the importance of retention at your gym and how it's something most affiliate owners struggle with. This is why performance tracking is crucial. It keeps your athletes engaged, motivated, and accountable.



This Toe To Bar Modification

Getting sick of hanging knee raises? Try this modification/drill to get you closer to the T2B of your dreams.



NOBULLs in Neon

Is your workout wardrobe black mixed with other shades of black? Get a POP of color with the neon collection by NOBULL. They’ve got trainers, runners and tons of swag to ensure you are the best dressed at the gym, because we all know swag helps you get fitter.



Sausage Stuffing

Butcher Box’s official recipe of the week is giving us Thanksgiving flashbacks. This sausage stuffing will be your new favorite. Don’t forget to use ButcherBox’s ground sweet Italian sausage.

JOB BOARD Jobs from Gym Jobs

Evansville CrossFit | CrossFit Coach - Array

Tradewinds Fitness | Group Fitness Coach and Personal Training - Array

Get Fit EGV | CrossFit Elk Grove Village | Part Time L1 CrossFit Coach - Array

District H Strength & Fitness | Full-Time Trainer/Coach - Array

Quantum Fitness | Group Fitness Coach/Nutritionist - Array

CrossFit TYL | CrossFit TYL for sale (profitable and turn key) - Array

CrossFit 925 | 925 Coach and Personal Trainer - Array

CrossFit CE | Part Time Coach - Array

Move. Lift. Live. | Performance and Group Fitness Coach - Array

CrossFit Dartmouth | CrossFit Coach - Array

OP CrossFit | CrossFit Coach and Personal Trainer - Array

Power Plant CrossFit | Group Fitness Coach - Array

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

  • 🎂 Happy birthday, Hope Murray (Saturday) and Andie Farias (Sunday).
  • Congratulations to Stella Wexler from CrossFit DBP in Ocala, FL on her first deficit handstand push-up. #trynewthings
  • Congratulations to Steve Hoover from Terminus Strength & Conditioning in Atlanta, GA on the 5RM deadlift at 500 pounds/226.8kg.
  • Congratulations to Nicole Quilliam, also from Terminus S&C, on setting a new marathon PR with a time of 2:52:00 at the Houston Marathon this past weekend.
  • Jason Grubb is on a winning streak in the Masters Men’s field, adding another first place finish this past weekend in the 2023 TYR Wodapalooza Men’s 45-49 division.

CrossFit Morgantown in West Virginia is hosting the third annual Giosi WOD this weekend in honor of owner, Jeff Giosi, who passed away January 23, 2021. This year, proceeds will go to the Forgiven Warrior Startup Fund—a non-profit organization that Jeff and his wife Sarah dreamed of together, and that she is continuing to build. Register for the WOD here, or donate directly to Forgiven Warrior here.

12/16: Masters Mania 6 (Oklahoma City, OK)
1/13 - 1/14: The 615 Throwdown (Nashville, TN)
1/14: Battle Cancer Miami (Miami, FL)
1/20 - 1/21: Masters N Minors II (Beachwood, OH)
1/20: FrostFit Team Challenge (Colorado Springs, CO)
1/27: REPS AHEAD Switch Winterfest (Broomfield, CO)
1/27: GOAT Youth Fitness Competition (Olyphant, PA)

See all upcoming events

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