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Eric Roza Steps Down as CEO -RX

Morning Chalk Up

February 4   |   POWERED BY

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Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up premium subscriber edition.

Wow, we certainly have a lot to go over. Buckle up.

In today’s edition:

  • Roza steps down as CEO, moves to Board Chairman.
  • NOBULL goes to Europe.
  • The CrossFit Games adds a fifth day of competition.
  • Masters athlete Will Powell programs our workout of the week.
  • We’re giving away weekly prizes during the CrossFit Open.
  • How do fats help in athletic performance?
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“Small is not just a stepping-stone. Small is a great destination itself.” - Jason Fried

  Eric Roza Stepping Down, Moving to Board Chairman of CrossFit  

Eric Roza Stepping Down, Moving to Board Chairman of CrossFit

Eric Roza has announced he’s transitioning from CrossFit’s Chief Executive Officer to Board Chairman, a move both Roza and others in CrossFit said was always the plan, but has been accelerated.

“My plan from the beginning was to set an ambitious vision, assemble the right team of executives to achieve it, then step into the Chairman role on the board after three years or so,” Roza wrote in an email to employees. “During my recent time away and in subsequent discussions with the board and our senior team over the past weeks, I’ve decided to accelerate that timetable.”

The big picture: Roza has guided CrossFit through a rocky 18 months, most recently drawing ire from parts of the community when he fired CrossFit’s longtime head of the Games, Dave Castro. CrossFit has begun the search process for a new CEO but didn’t indicate a shortlist of candidates they’re considering. In the meantime, CrossFit will rely on a strong leadership team in place to lead core divisions of the company.

  • Roza: “It is a tribute to this team that, in spite of the pandemic, in 2021 we added more than 1,000 affiliates, credentialed over 15,000 new coaches, and welcomed hundreds of thousands of new members, even as COVID continues to impact many of our key markets.”
  • There are now roughly 13,000 affiliates worldwide, a net increase of approximately 1500 since Roza took over, according to CrossFit.
  • Registrations for training seminars (L1, Online L1, L2, and L3) are up 20% year-over-year according to an email from the executive leadership team circulated to staff.

Some background: Roza bought the company and assumed the role of CEO during one of the most challenging times in CrossFit’s 20-year history. Total affiliation globally was in decline.

  • CrossFits’ revenue streams had suffered tremendously as L1 seminars were no longer operating and affiliates were seeking a moratorium on affiliate payments.
  • COVID-19 had temporarily closed approximately 89% of affiliates globally and 96% in the United States due to local health mandates.
  • The broader CrossFit community was still reeling from the PR disasters in the Summer of 2020, which results in the eventual sale of CrossFit to Roza.
  • Hundreds of affiliates had either disaffiliated or were in the process of disaffiliating before the sale went through.
  • Hosting the 2020 CrossFit Games was questionable at best due to health restrictions. The Games team was eventually able to orchestrate a two-part Games, one online and one in-person, moving the event from August to October.

A brief history of changes and new products since Roza came on board:

  • CrossFit now has a nearly complete board and executive leadership team, including a CFO, President, CMO, CTO, GM of Affiliates, Sport, and Education and Training.
  • May 2021: The CrossFit L1 moved online and hosted in seven languages.
  • June 2021: CrossFit launched CAP: CrossFit Affiliate Programming, proving affiliates daily programming for members.
  • August 2021: CrossFit Affiliate Playbook and resource center launches.
  • October 2021: CrossFit Affiliate Partner Network, an affiliate-only portal that gives gyms access to discount pricing on goods and services.
  • October 2021: CrossFit Precision Care, a new telehealth primary care service.
  • November 2021: CrossFit Nutrition Course launches.
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…20 days until the 2022 CrossFit Open kicks off. Register today.

  • Want to see where you stack up against our Morning Chalk Up peeps when it comes to the 2022 CrossFit Open? You can join our leaderboard here and also compete for prizes each week. 💪

MUST WATCH The Bottom Line episode featuring John Wooley and 17-year affiliate owner of Diablo CrossFit, Craig Howard, give insight into what Eric Roza stepping down from CEO means for CrossFit moving forward, who they should be looking for to fill the new position and their initial reaction to another change in Home Office leadership.

NOBULL has opened a European office in Southwark, London. Sam Kitching, the head of NOBULL in Europe explains the move:

  • “Our European plan is orientated around a key city strategy which will be building the NOBULL brand physically and digitally in cities like London, Paris and Berlin. We are excited to launch the UK office in April and other European countries throughout the year.”

Army Ranger veteran Brandon Tucker did 1,300 muscle-ups in well under 24 hours, setting a new world record in the process. 🇺🇸

  • “He tried to pace himself for the first few hours, doing two muscle-ups at a time, with a short break after each set. As the windows darkened and Tucker neared hour 11 of the challenge, the fatigue — and blisters — started to hit him…”

WHOOP will be joining up with Battle Cancer to support cancer survivors via The Battle Cancer Program, a free, 12-week program that will start in March across the planet.

Should you take melatonin as a sleep aid? A fierce debate is raging right now as the use of the supplement is on the rise. 😴

  2022 CrossFit Games to Start on Wednesday, Adding Fifth Day  

2022 CrossFit Games to Start on Wednesday, Adding Fifth Day

CrossFit has announced the 2022 CrossFit Games will now start on Wednesday, August 3, a day earlier than originally planned. The announcement was sent out in The Hopper, a Games-focused newsletter from the CrossFit Games team.

One big thing: Individual athletes will once again start on Wednesday (August 3), and in all likelihood, have a break on Thursday before resuming Friday through Sunday. This Wednesday through Sunday schedule has been utilized frequently in CrossFit Games over the past ten years, especially in Carson, CA.

  • It’s worth noting that all 27 divisions will have a chance to compete inside the coliseum similar to last year, according to CrossFit LLC.

Reading between the lines: With 27 divisions competing over a handful of days, organizing livestream coverage, judges, equipment and adequate competition floor space is a logistical nightmare. With individuals competing on all the same days, it also draws a lot of attention away from other divisions. Adding Wednesday to the calendar should help ease the logistical burden while maximizing the visibility of all divisions.

2022 CrossFit Games Season Calendar: 

  • Feb 24 – 28 – Open week 1
  • Mar 3 – 7 – Open week 2
  • Mar 10 – 14 – Open week 3
  • Mar 24-27 – Quarterfinals individual
  • Apr 7-10 – Quarterfinals teams
  • Apr 21-24 – Quarterfinals Age Groups
  • May 24 – Semifinals week 1
  • May 26-29 – Age Groups Week 1: Teens + Masters 35-39, 40-44, 45-49
  • May 27-29 – Semifinals week 2
  • June 2-5 – Age Groups Week 2: Masters 50-54, 55-59, 60-64, 65+
  • June 2-5 – Adaptive Semifinals
  • June 3-5 – Semifinals week 3
  • June 10-12 – Semifinals week 4
  • Jun 29 – Jul 1 – Last chance qualifier
  • August 3-7 – Games

  Will Powell’s Workout of the Week  

Will Powell’s Workout of the Week

Every Friday, we’re bringing you an exclusive workout challenge programmed by a CrossFit Games athlete or coach that you can take on at home or the gym. You can post your times or scores in the comment section.

Today’s workout is programmed by eight-time CrossFit Games Masters athlete Will Powell. Powell has the distinction of being the first athlete in Games history to win titles in three different divisions. He won titles in the 50-54 (2014), the 55-59 (back-to-back in 2015 and 2016) divisions before winning his fourth overall title this past season in the 60-64 age group.

In his eight Games appearances Powell has an average placing of 3.6 with all but two of his finishes in the top-5. Among his highlights include winning all three stages, the Open, Age Group Online Qualifier and the Games, in 2016. In 2017, Powell competed with a cantaloupe sized benign tumor on his left lung. With less than half lung capacity in that lung he still placed 12th at that year’s Games.

4 Rounds:
5 back squats 75% 1RM
24 dumbbell walking lunges (heavy)
40 unbroken wall balls (20/14)
*Rest 3 minutes between each round.
Time Cap: 20 Minutes

Scaling Options

Be prepared to adjust loads between sets if needed. If you’re not able to go unbroken on the wall balls, keep the movement going by switching to wall ball squats and finally to air squats if needed to hit the 40 reps. This workout is designed to recruit the full spectrum of muscle fiber types in lower extremities in the same giant set. If you need to, reduce the weight loads but keep the rep scheme intact. This is designed to be both leg isolation and a metcon.

Some advice from Will: “​​Attack this workout as a leg isolation power, strength, and endurance move and take advantage of the incidental metabolic effect.”

To inquire about submitting an upcoming workout of the week, shoot us a note.

  Win Weekly Giveaways on the 2022 #morningchalkup CrossFit Open Leaderboard  

Win Weekly Giveaways on the 2022 #morningchalkup CrossFit Open Leaderboard

With the 2022 CrossFit Open only weeks away, we have partnered with three different brands in the CrossFit community to celebrate your participation in the Open with prizes each week. Compete against Morning Chalk Up readers across the globe, and submit your scores for a chance to win.

What you could win:

  • UNBARD Coffee – one case of their brand new, cold brew pre-workout that we got to try at Wodapalooza
  • KNOW ZERO Training Gear – a clothing brand by PAINKLLR
  • JUNK Brands $50 Gift Card – the perfect headband for your WOD with no shortage of design optionsBut first: In order to be eligible for prizes, you must register for the Open and join the Morning Chalk Up leaderboard. Here’s how:
    1. Register for the 2022 CrossFit Open, or Log in if you have already registered.
    2. Under Your Competition Dashboard, find the section “Your #hashtag leaderboards.”
    3. In the “Add your own hashtag” box, type morningchalkup and click the morningchalkup leaderboard to add. When you have properly selected the leaderboard, it will show up in dark blue below.
    4. Lastly, follow @MorningChalkUp on Instagram.
Continue Reading...
  How Do Fats Help in Athletic Performance?  

How Do Fats Help in Athletic Performance?

The macronutrient super stars of athletic performance are, unsurprisingly, carbohydrates and protein. Where protein is used to build and retain lean body mass as adaptation to training occurs, carbohydrates are used as the preferential fuel for that training.

Glycolysis is the conversion of stored carbohydrates into usable energy and muscle protein synthesis is the process by which new muscle tissues are formed from circulating amino acids. Glycogen depletion is the most common cause of fatigue and output decline in athletes and muscle protein synthesis can only occur in response to an appropriately difficult stimulus. Meaning an athlete must be properly fueled (with carbohydrates) in order to output at a high enough level to elicit a muscle building response from dietary amino acids. To use an analogy, carbohydrates are like the construction workers and protein is like the lumber. It requires both labor and raw material to build a house.

Carbohydrates spent many years getting shamed as the root cause of the obesity problem in the US. And frankly, they still do – sometimes by prominent members of the CrossFit community. On the whole however, CrossFit athletes and community members have embraced the many positive benefits of carbohydrates as part of a balanced diet, both for athletic success and happiness. Protein has never been too big of an issue for the CrossFit community (thanks to the Paleo diet) and the combination of the two macronutrients yields generally positive results.

Continue Reading...


How to Dominate High Intensity Interval Workouts

HIIT style workouts often come up in competitions as they're: A. fast tempo and exciting to watch, B. fit very well into a weekend long schedule. Listen to Chris Hinshaw explain how you can gain a huge step on your opponents in these workouts, without doing any extra work.




The 2022 Open Guide

You own your gym. You own your fitness. Now it’s time to own the Open. Check out the 2022 Open Guide from SugarWOD, UpLaunch, and Zen Planner for event planning advice, checklists, sample communications, and more.



To Cheat Meal, Or Not To Cheat Meal?

If it's good enough for Dwayne still might not be the best idea for you. Cheat meals are often debated in CrossFit but usually without much evidence on either side. Check out this explanation from Dr. Mike Israetel to see if you're going to continue with the cheating.



A Free WHOOP Strap 4.0 And First Month's Membership

Gain unparalleled insight into your body and training with a free WHOOP Strap 4.0 and first month's membership. WHOOP measures your body's data over 100 times a second to provide personalized feedback on your recovery, strain, and sleep.



This Common Kipping Mistake

So you have some pull ups in your locker. You're even getting the hang of kipping. But however hard you try, you just can't string more than one together. Don't despair, you could be making this very common mistake in your kip. Here’s how to set yourself up for the next rep and start stringing big sets together in workouts


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

  • 🎉 Happy 12 years to CrossFit Local in Chapel Hill, NC (Chad and Kelly Edwards).
  • Jennifer Jasper from Ocean State Crossfit North in Smithfield, RI hit a 225 pound/102kg split jerk PR.
  • Congratulations Emily Tanner from CrossFit Greater Heights in Houston, TX on the 300 pound/136kg back squat PR.
  • Nader Issa from Kawi CrossFit in Austin, TX hit a thruster PR of 290 pounds/131.5kg while competing at The Fittest Experience.
  • Danielle Brandon put up a 250 pound/113.5kg push jerk.
  • Sophie Shaft back squats 300 pounds/136kg for a new 4 rep max (along with 3 more sets of it).

CrossFit 819 owner, Shane Miller, of Gantineau, Québec has filed a motion for a Charter Challenge with the goal of having gyms acknowledged as an essential service by the Canadian government, to avoid future coronavirus lockdowns. Shane has started a GoFundMe page to help with legal fees.

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