“Success seems to be largely a matter of hanging on after others have let go.”- William Feather
Fee Saghafi Programs Workout to Honor Mahsa Amini, the Iranian Woman Killed for How She Wore Her Hijab
When Fee Saghafi’s inbox was flooded with messages from Iranians in the middle of September, she felt immediately compelled “to help be their voice,” said the 2019 CrossFit Games athlete, who grew up in the United States but whose father is Iranian.
The messages were, of course, about Mahsa Amini, the 22-year-old woman who was arrested by Iran’s Law Enforcement Command for not wearing her hijab in accordance with government standards, and later died on September 16 after she was allegedly beaten by police. Her death has sparked ongoing worldwide protests that inspired Saghafi to speak up.
“When you have a full inbox of messages asking for help…I needed to try to help the best way I can,” Saghafi explained to the Morning Chalk Up.
On Instagram, she wrote: “Even though my feet have never walked the life of oppressed Iranian women, my blood and my roots will always be like theirs…Even though most of us can’t understand and feel the oppression they’ve experienced doesn’t mean we can’t stand with them and help be their voice.”
Taking action: To show her support for Iranian women, and to honor Amini, Saghafi did what CrossFit athletes often do. She created a workout called MAHSA, a 22-minute AMRAP of 9 thrusters (135/95), 13 bar-facing burpees and a 200-meter run and posted the video of her tackling it.
“I programmed MAHSA to represent and honor her, the women and men currently protesting and fighting, and the struggle and oppression that women in Iran have been facing for many decades,” Saghafi explained to the Morning Chalk Up.
The workout: Each component of MAHSA has a symbolic component to it, Saghafi explained, even the 22-minute time domain, which represents the age Amini was when she was killed.
Further, the rope climb is symbolic of “a climb to freedom,” Saghafi said, and the thrusters “represent the Iranian people in the fight to lift oppression of the government and their leaders off their shoulders.
“The 13 burpees (represent) the day of (her) arrest and the constant battle of getting knocked down and standing up to fight again,” Saghafi continued. And finally, the 200 meter run represents the protests that continue around the world, “and the battle for freedom happening in the streets of Tehran.”
Saghafi is urging others in the CrossFit community to show their support by taking on MAHSA and to “keep spreading the word.”
The big picture: Even though a workout won’t stop human rights abuses from happening, in Iran or elsewhere in the world, it’s representative of the freedom Saghafi has to pursue the life she wants to live, freedom Saghafi hopes all Iranian women will one day experience. But this won’t happen in silence. That’s why Saghafi is using her social media platform to take a stand against something much bigger than fitness.
“Being a woman that represents Mexican and Iranian culture among this sport gives me a platform to be a voice for those who struggle to be seen and heard,” she said. “Iranian women and all women should be free to show off how proud they are of their strong bodies, minds, talents and passions without the fear of death or punishment being just a moment away.”
She added: “I am an Iranian woman. I stand with Iranian women. I will be a voice for them, and I will keep honoring all of them.”
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Don’t miss it: Today Morning Chalk Up’s Preslie Hirsch is chatting live with WIT Fitness founder Dan Williams at 8AM CT on how to run a million dollar crowdfunding campaign (exclusive to RX members).
Industry update: Foodspring is now part of CrossFit’s affiliate partnership network and you can sign up. 🥦
What does it mean?: The Food & Drug Administration is “proposing to update the definition of ‘healthy’ that’s on food packages.” Is this a good idea, or not?
Event notice: Tickets remain for this weekend’s MFLH Invitational at their gym in Lindenhurst, NY. The Invitational celebrates 10 years of the CrossFit staple and includes a clean and jerk showcase on Saturday featuring Christian Harris, Tola Morakinyo, Matt Dlugos, Elijah Muhammad, Will Carter, Kelsey Kiel, Michelle Basnett and more. Food trucks and entertainment. On Sunday MFLH will host a Pro Day as athletes will go through a series of workouts.
Do We Need Two Rookies of the Year?
Throwing it back to 2014, the CrossFit Games team introduced the Rookie of the Year award for the first time, and quite frankly the award winners every year since then are basically a who’s who of the best modern CrossFit athletes:
Ever wonder what goes into the design of the Reebok Nano? Morning Chalk Up’s Lauren Kalil took a trip to Reebok Headquarters and caught up with the Senior Product Manager, Tal Short. The two discuss the evolution of the Nano, the development to advance the shoe while sticking true to its roots, and even some insight into the next version — the Nano X3 that will launch in 2023.
So You’re Saying There’s a Chance? Tia-Clair Toomey Has Open Invite to Rogue Invitational
In her latest YouTube video, six-time reigning and defending “Fittest Woman on Earth” Tia-Clair Toomey disclosed that she hasn’t completely ruled out competing at this year’s Rogue Invitational on October 28-30 at Dell Diamond in Round Rock, TX. When asked if she had an open invitation to Rogue she confirmed that was indeed true.
“I couldn’t decline my invitation,” commented Toomey. “I actually was like, ‘Hey I’ll do Legends. I still want to physically be a part of the Rogue Invitational weekend.’”
She has also stated she took a month off after the Games and just recently got back to training three weeks ago with her focus being training for November’s Down Under Championship in Wollongong, Australia. Her training for that event has been more team-focused as she will partner up with Brooke Wells and Ellie Turner.
Though absent from the Rogue list of confirmed athletes, Toomey has said she would be at the Rogue Invitational in some capacity. That is no surprise given that she is a Rogue sponsored athlete and her and husband Shane Orr’s close friendship with the Bill and Caity Henniger, the founder and owners of Rogue.
Ellie Turner’s Visa Issues Puts Rogue Invitational Appearance in Jeopardy
Two-time CrossFit Games athlete Ellie Turner could miss her opportunity to compete at the 2022 Rogue Invitational at the end of October due to an ongoing issue with obtaining a United States Visa. The 24-year old Australian is currently residing in Squamish, British Columbia, Canada through her Visa she obtained through Canada prior to this year’s Games season.
Remind me: Turner originally obtained her Visa through Canada because at the time she had traveled to Quebec prior to Wodapalooza in January to train with Michele Letendre, her coach at the time. In April, she traveled to Vancouver, Washington to train with Justin Medeiros, his coach Adam Neiffer and Chris Hinshaw. She soon after she left Deka Comp and remained in the United States to train at CrossFit Fort Vancouver with Medeiros.
Due to her Canadian Visa, Turner can only stay in the United States for a maximum of six months before having to return to Canada. Including her time competing in Miami for Wodapalooza she reached that six month period soon after competing at this year’s Games.
With the intention of training full-time and making the United States her home she has applied for a US Visa. However the process has made the prospect of her competing at the Rogue Invitational an unknown.
Currently she cannot re-enter the United States until her visa application goes through processing and eventually approval.
Part of the process includes an interview with the U.S. Customs office as part of the application.
She stated on the Sevan Podcast on September 25 that the interview is scheduled in the upcoming weeks.
“I can be anywhere in the world apart from America,” said Turner on the Sevan Podcast.
After the interview the approval process begins, which Turner says could take an additional week putting the timeline near the start of the Rogue Invitational.
Turner also stated she has retained legal counsel that specialize in helping people with Visa issues.
The bottom line: Turner’s appearance at the premiere offseason event could come down to the 11th hour, but she says she has every intention of competing in Texas on October 28-30. The Rogue Invitational women’s field is already lacking some of the top names, such as Tia-Clair Toomey, Mal O’Brien, Haley Adams and Brooke Wells. Having one of the top up-and-coming stars in Turner not competing would be another blow to the event.
Turner is coming off a 18th place finish at the Games which capped a banner year where she finished seventh in the Open, third in the Oceania Quarterfinals and repeated her third place finish at the Torian Pro Semifinal to qualify for the Games for the second-straight year.
Jayson Hopper’s Workout of the Week
Today’s workout is programmed by two-time Games athlete Jayson Hopper. The current seventh “Fittest Man on Earth” burst onto the scene in 2021 when he came out of nowhere to win the Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge Semifinal, punching his very first ticket to Madison for the NOBULL CrossFit Games.
The then 23-year old placed 19th as a rookie at the Games before switching over to HWPO Training resulting in a 19th place finish both in the worldwide Open and North America Quarterfinals, setting career highs in placement in both stages respectively. The former Clemson University wide receiver will be competing at the Rogue Invitational for the second-straight year at the end of October.
3 rounds for time
9 Bar Muscle-ups
12 Calorie Row
18 Kettlebell Hang Snatches (53/35 LBs – 24/16 KGs)
Kettlebell snatches and thrusters = lighter weight
Bar muscle-ups = burpee pull-ups
Chest-to-bar pull-ups = regular pull-ups
Some advice from Jayson: “Plan for the kettlebells to be very grippy and to affect your bar muscle-ups. So maybe 2-3 sets on the kettlebell snatches. Find a good and smooth pace on both machines. The workout is going to be won on the transitions to and from the kettlebell snatches and the chest-to-bars so be strategic in those two implements”
To inquire about submitting an upcoming workout of the week, shoot us a note.
Stringing Together Toes to Bar
Struggling to string together your toes to bar? Still doing a little mini kip in between each rep? See if this common toe to bar fault could be what is keeping you from hitting multiple reps at a time!
When it comes to benching, everyone has their own style. Regular grip, close grip, narrow grip, incline, decline… you name it. But regardless of what type of benching you are doing, this simple coaching cue can help you put up some more weight.
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