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First Box on the Beach in Sri Lanka is Open

Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up. Today’s edition is brought to you by O2.

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Affiliates who can’t make the trip, we got your back! Email [email protected] to get the same promotion and for a chance to win the Hyperice products.


“Everything can be taken from you in a day. Eventually that day will come.” — Brian Kight

First Box on the Beach in Sri Lanka is Open


The story.

Vicky Pester had been living in Asia for seven years, working in the travel industry. After stints in Vietnam, Singapore, and Hong Kong she decided enough was enough.

Tired of working in the corporate world, she packed up and moved to Sri Lanka, to open CrossFit Kalpitiya in Kalpitiya, the first female owned, on the beach, box in the area.


“Having been in the corporate world for many years, I decided to bite the bullet and head to my favorite place in the world to set up a business based on all my loves; fitness, food and travel,” Vicky wrote.

Pester first visited Sri Lanka in 2016 and fell in love with its diversity of people and landscapes. And she thought it would be a perfect match for her other love; CrossFit.

“I was first introduced to CrossFit when I was spending a lot of time training on the Soi in Phuket… in 2017. I then joined a couple of boxes in Hong Kong and loved it. I loved how you could travel the world and find like minded people by visiting a CrossFit gym. I loved the sense of community and support. But mainly I loved how good I felt after a class. I then decided to do my CrossFit Level 1 Certificate and to open my own box. It was all very fast moving as everything felt so right,” Pester told us.

Not just CrossFit.

CrossFit Kalpitiya is housed inside The BNKR. Aside from CrossFit, they also have a strength and conditioning gym, a calisthenics park, group fitness classes, international trainers and a healthy café, where everything on the menu is homemade and helps supports the local community, right on the beaches of the Indian Ocean.

Continue reading…

The Case for a Ben Smith Wildcard is Stronger Than You Think


When Ben Smith made this Instagram post a day ago it sparked an Internet conversation/informal petition around giving Smith a wildcard invite to the CrossFit Games.

  • Adam Klink’s comment — “Like this comment if Ben should be invited to the games” — has garnered just shy of 400 likes.
  • The post also garnered supporting comments from Noah Ohlsen, Jason Carroll, Laura Horvath, Tim Paulson, Kristi Eramo, Cole Sager and others.

While no one from CrossFit HQ has yet to reach out to Smith, there is technically a precedent for this type of invitation.

  • In 2013, Kristan Clever took 4th in the Southern California Regional, one spot out of a qualifying position. Only the top three qualified back then.
  • Clever suffered a shoulder injury during Regionals event 1, hindering her performance throughout the remainder of the weekend.
  • CrossFit exercised its right to offer Clever an invite to compete at the Games.
  • Per the rulebook at the time: “CrossFit Inc. reserves the right, in its sole and absolute discretion, to invite past winners, guest athletes, Teams or others, to participate in any stage of competition.”

Per Section 4.06 in the 2019 Rulebook: “CrossFit Inc. reserves the right to invite four individual athletes to compete at the Games. The means by which an athlete can earn one of the four at-large bids is solely up to CrossFit Inc.’s discretion.”

  • Hunter McIntyre is getting one of those invites.
  • Three invites remain but there’s no requirement that they’re used.

Smith has been recovering from minor knee surgery a good portion of the season.

  • He withdrew from Dubai CrossFit Championship in December, deciding instead to go ahead with the procedure the following month. “Made the decision to go through with surgery to get my knee finally cleared up. Had a meniscus tear, cyst, and tears and wearing away of cartilage under my kneecap.”
  • He finished 4765 in the CrossFit Open worldwide despite being mid-recovery.
  • His best chance of qualifying was at the Rogue Invitational. However, Smith had barely more than a month of hard, dedicated training before the Sanctional. He finished 14th.
  • Smith’s last chance was at Granite Games 12 days later. He improved his finish to 10th but still far short of an invite.

Our take: While there’s a precedent for inviting Smith, given the time frame (1 week before the Games) and the fact that no one has reached out to him, makes it seem very unlikely an invite will be extended. On the flip side, Reebok would only have to spin up a uniform for one of their sponsored athletes and Smith has already stated he’s ready to roll if the invite came. If he did get the invite that would extend his streak to 11 straight Games appearances.

Things To…


WATCH: Rich Froning’s Basement and Third Gym
Armen Hammer spent some time in Cookeville, TN with Rich Froning and Mayhem athletes. Rich gives Armen a tour of his home gym, his office space, and his basement, sharing the story of the one time he almost through all his medals in the trash.


HEAR: Sammy Moniz on the EPIC Meatcast
Feeding the Frasers Sammy Moniz recently visited the Roam Ranch in Fredericksburg, TX. She shares her experience on the EPIC Meatcast along with the genesis of Feeding the Frasers, how she actually feeds the Fittest Man on Earth, and why the role of agents and sponsors are even more critical in CrossFit than other professional sports.


GET: Chicken Wings For Life with ButcherBox
From now until July 29, all new ButcherBox customers will receive three pounds of free-range organic chicken wings in every order for the lifetime of their subscription. ButcherBox chicken is USDA Certified Organic, never ever given antibiotics or added hormones, and free-range (not pasture- raised).


KNOW: The Science Behind Probiotics
Did you know that probiotics can actually promote a leaner body with less fat? Jetson’s new summer probiotic formulation “Fit” does just that thanks to six specific strands of probiotics for a leaner body and improved performance. Use code “JETSONFIT30” for 30% off your first order. Code expires 8/1.


EAT: Good Morning Coffee Lover’s Smoothie
This delicious, easy coffee smoothie recipe has a hint of chocolate flavor from cacao powder, a boost of protein from collagen peptides and peanut butter, and makes a great morning pick-me-up or post-workout breakfast.


Today’s edition of the Morning Chalk Up is brought to you by

Chalk Up Community

  • WEIGHTLIFTING FOR A CAUSE — Behemoth CrossFit in Cypress, TX is holding a silent auction, donation collection and in-house Olympic Lifting meet July 27 to help raise funds for Elijah Rising, a nonprofit that helps combat human sex trafficking in Houston.
  • ALL DAY ROW — Trident CrossFit in Alexandria, VA is hosting a row fundraiser on Saturday, August 10 in honor of Recon Marine Clint Trial, who was seriously injured in an explosion while deployed overseas.
  • GRAND OPENING — CrossFit Fernley in Fernley, NV is having their grand opening party on Saturday,  August 10. There will be a community class and a potluck following. Everyone is welcome.

CHALK UP IN 2 MINUTES (a highlight reel around social media of CrossFit pros and average joes)

Andy Rosenbaum back squats 435 poundsAJ Davis does a snatch + 2 overhead squats at 330 pounds • Carole Castellani does a clean + squat clean at 205 poundsSam Briggs is in Madison Happy birthday Paige SemenzaHappy birthday Sean Sweeney • Ben Smith cleans 330 pounds for two • Cody Stenberg gets his first muscle up • Rob and Shaella-Lee Forte on the birth of their son, RyanJacob Heppner gets a 360 pound jerk PR. 

Games Watch: 7 days until the CrossFit Games.

— To watch the CrossFit Games live, subscribe to our YouTube channel.
— The West Coast Classic and Madrid CrossFit Championship will provide coverage of the 2019 CrossFit Games in Spanish.
— The Buttery Bros and Talking Elite Fitness are on their way to Madison, stopping first in Cookeville to see Rory McKernan.
— See what athletes get in their goodie bags.
— Bookmark our 2019 CrossFit Games Leaderboard.
— Alexander Anasagasti Roman got his visa and will be in Madison.
— Video: See how McKenzie Flinchum is training for the Games.

Around the Alliant Energy Center:

On Wednesday, July 31 FITAID and RPM will be running a special class from 4:00 until 6:00 with adaptive athlete Logan Aldridge at Big Dane Collective.
Reserve a spot to drop-in at the spectator workout area at the Alliant Energy Center.
— You have options to  drop-in when you’re in Madison.
— Get your tickets to the 2019 CrossFit Health Conference, held Wednesday, July 31 at Monona Terrace in Madison, WI.

Mishka Murad On NOBULL Sending Shoes to National Champs — Mishka Murad, the national champion of Pakistan, shared her thoughts on getting NOBULLS for the CrossFit Games.

— I don’t think anything has made me feel that my victory as a National Champion was as significant as what @nobullproject has done for me.

— “I’ve seen those videos for years, where sponsored athletes get showered with free shit, while many others remain invisible, unheard, unnoticed. Because it’s not JUST about hard work. It’s about the platform you have access to, to showcase your hard work and the privilege you need before that. I was never going to be that person who companies cared for but …NOBULL has taken all that and flipped it. Here I am, with no chance at winning and yet, I check my mail, and already feel like a winner.”

Giving CrossFit a Try — Two local reporters from a Harrisburg, PA station, Amanda Peterson and Brett Thackara, visited CrossFit Condor in Mechanicsburg, PA to give it a try. They documented their experience as new CrossFitters. 


“Keeping it in the Family; Braydon Brus Competing at Games with Cousin Rich Froning,” by Jessica Danger, Morning Chalk Up 

Fifteen-year-old Braydon Brus will compete in the CrossFit Games for the first time this year. But Braydon’s arrival to Madison has a twist; he’ll be heading there with his cousin, Rich Froning.

Braydon has been watching his cousin, Rich Froning, since 2011 when he watched from the stands as he took first place in Carson, CA. The next seven years, Braydon and his family visited Carson to spend time with family, cheering Rich on through the CrossFit Games.

So it made perfect sense when Braydon told his mom what he wanted for his 13th birthday. He wanted to head to Cookeville and train with Rich. Mary, Braydon’s mother, packed him up and shipped him off to train with Rich and friends.

“Rich was so awesome with Braydon and included him in his normal training. Braydon was hooked,” Ms. Brus told Morning Chalk Up.

Braydon came home from his summer in Cookeville with purpose. He told his mom he wanted to qualify for the CrossFit Games while Rich was still competing. At 13, he was too young to qualify through the Open, missing the birthday cut-off by one month. So Braydon trained for the year, preparing for his next chance.


7/26 – 7/28: CanWest Games (Coquitlam, BC)
7/27: The Mountain Meltdown (Arapahoe Basin, CO)
7/27: 7th annual Dog Days of Summer Competition (Roswell, GA)
7/27: The CF Summer Circus (Des Moines, IA)
7/27: 2019 Summer Meltdown (Birmingham, AL)
7/27: Masters Tour (Travelers Rest, SC)
7/27: The WoDer Games (Ontario, Canada)
7/27: Girls Gone RX Waco (Waco, TX)
7/27: Rock the Ages at CrossFit Templum (Carrollton, TX)
7/27: The Meshugge Melee (Overland Park, KS)
7/27: All Gave Some, Some Gave All (Whitesboro, NY)
7/27: EVF “Stronger Together” Challenge (New York, NY)
7/27: X’s and Y’s (Lilburn, GA)
7/27: Elijah Rising Weightlifting Meet (Cypress, TX)
7/29 – 8/4: The 2019 CrossFit Games (Madison, WI)
8/2: Pirate Supporters Friday Night Light Kick Off (Lefors, TX)
8/02: OUTWOD Amsterdam at CrossFit ZeeBurg (Amsterdam, Netherlands)
8/3: OUTWOD Kansas City at CrossFit FIF (Kansas City, MO)
8/3: War of the WODs Summer Series (Greensboro, NC)
8/3: Riverport Rumble (Louisville, KY)
8/3: 31 Heroes (Norfolk,VA)
8/3: G’Town Throwdown – Chapter 3 (Georgetown, MA)
8/3: Brawl in the Burbs (Bridgeport, PA)
8/10: CFE’s Sugar & Spice Co-Ed Partner Competition (Burlington, MA)
8/10: Best of the Midwest Team Series at CrossFit 9 Degrees (Brownsburg, IN)
8/10: OUTWOD North Brunswick at Iron CrossFit (North Brunswick, NJ)
8/10: OUTWOD Phoenixville at CrossFit Lock 60 (Phoenixville, PA)
8/10: Sparrow Classic 2 Scaled Partner Competition (Pearland, TX)
8/10: Summer Battleground 2019 (Farmingdale, NY)
8/10: Goddess Games (Charlotte, NC)
8/10: All Day Row (Alexandria, VA)
8/10 – 8/11: No Surrender Survival Games (Wooster, OH)
8/11: The Rise of The Resilient (Hopkinton, MA)
8/16: OUTWOD Charlotte (Charlotte, NC)
8/16 – 8/17: WodFest 2019 (Joplin, MO)
8/17: Fittest in the Fork (Ft. Sill, OK)
8/17: Barbells For Bullies at CrossFit QDA (Buffalo, NY)
8/17: CrossFit Sua Sponte’s Summer Slam (Raleigh, NC)
8/17: The Fossil Games (Denver, CO)
8/17: Warhorse Games KC (Kansas City, KS)
8/17: CrossFit Shatter Summer Slam (Albany, NY)
8/17: The Syndicate Series Presents The Battlegrounds (Columbia, MD)
8/17: Poore Beer and CrossFit Benefit (Hendersonville, NC)
8/17: Unbroken Series Adaptive Games (Marion, NC)
8/17: 6th annual Babes and Bros (Grand Rapids, MI)
8/17: The Battlegrounds at 12 Labours CrossFit (Columbia, MD)
8/18: Red Raider Backyard Brawl III (Coatesville, PA)
8/24: Battle For the Badge (Vestal, NY)
8/24: OUTWOD Miami at Move.Lift.Live (Miami, FL)
8/24: OUTWOD Las Vegas at CrossFit Social City (Las Vegas, NV)
8/24: Deadlifts for Kids (Lilburn, GA)
8/24: The Southern Games 2019 (Louisville, KY)
8/24: 2019 Koda First Timer’s Open (Oklahoma City, OK)
8/24: Rumble on the Bay (Green Bay, WI)
8/24: Ragin’ Games (Lafayette, LA)
8/24: The 10th Annual Iron Belle (Austin, TX)
8/24 – 8/25: Oregon CrossFit’s Best of the West Summer Event 2019 (Bend, OR)

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Is there something we missed? Email us at [email protected].
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