“Sweat is magic. Cover yourself in it daily to grant your wishes.”- Unknown
Kevin Koester: Finding Flexibility In Fitness
Kevin Koester may be in the 55-59 division, but watching him in the gym, you would never know. The 56 year old father, business owner, and three times CrossFit Games masters champion can perform 48 strict handstand push-ups in under a minute, burpee backflips, and snatched nearly 200 pounds at the 2021 CrossFit Games.
In 2022, balancing two businesses, Invictus Seattle and his steel erection company, as well as a family and fitness, Kevin decided it was time for the Games to take a back seat.
“In 2022, I had aged up into the next category,” said Koester. “It’s no secret that most of the workouts are scaled from the Rx version. To be 100% honest, I just wasn’t that interested in doing jumping pull-ups instead of bar muscle-ups.” he continued.
“I thought, maybe it’s the end of the road for me with my CrossFit journey and I’ll do some other things,” he concluded.
While Koester may have taken a step back from winning the CrossFit Games, the 56 year old refused to let fitness take a back seat. In 2022, Koester completed an odyssey race in Portland, Maine requiring athletes to swim and run from island to island and complete eight miles of running and six miles of swimming.
“The kicker was that I was tethered to my partner, who happened to be a 6’5” triathlete,” laughed Koester.
“We had a three meter tether that we were tethered together for almost five hours and swimming was not something I had done a ton of,” he continued.
“You’re talking freezing cold, open water with currents. But we never stopped once. We powered through the whole thing.” Koester added.
Finding his why: With a year of challenging fitness adventures under his belt, Koester soon realized that his love for the sport of fitness couldn’t keep him away forever. By the end of 2022, he decided it was time to lace the shoes back up. But this time, he would go beyond just working out for the love of fitness. This time, more than ever, Kevin Koester decided he needed to find his why.
“The goal this year is to dominate. And that’s not being cocky,” Koester declared confidently.
Those who know Kevin would agree. The word cocky, wouldn’t even be in the lexicon to describe the 56 year old business owner and father. Beyond the fact that Koester absolutely dominated the Age Group Quarterfinals, taking first place by 50 points. Koester’s humility and generosity are present in nearly everything he does.
The Seminfinals are backfilling, currently (at the time of publication), Oceania men and women are full, North America West men is full, Europe men is full, but there are still spots being filled in North America East men and women, Europe women, and Asia men. And Morning Chalk Up favorite, Jessica Androsik, is headed back to Semifinals!
How Kaiden Hogan's Two Year Bulk Earned Him a Quarterfinals Championship
In August of 2021, a 15-year-old, Kaiden Hogan cartwheeled across the finish line to celebrate his event win in the opening event of the CrossFit Games. At 5’2” and 125 pounds, Hogan finished the weekend in an impressive eighth place worldwide but faced an uphill battle as he turned his attention towards the 16-17 division.
An already difficult jump with heavier weights, higher movement standards, and the unreliability of growth spurts (not to mention the cutback from 20 to ten athletes qualifying in 2022), Hogan would face an extra challenge with his short stature. However, with 2022 as a decided building year, Hogan was determined to return to Madison in 2023.
Now, as he gears up for Age Group Semifinals after a win in Quarterfinals, he says the wait and nearly two-year bulk were well worth it.
CrossFit-focused O2 Recovery has announced a rebrand to O2 HYDRATION™, to raise awareness around healthier, better-performing options in the sugar-fueled sports drink market.
One big thing: The change from “Recovery” to “Hydration” is part of O2’s mission to take on “Big Sugar,” which founder and CrossFitter Dave Colina defines as the “corporations that have long dominated the market with drinks high in sugar content and bottled in single-use plastic.”
“Hydration is a massive $10B category that’s dominated by sugar water in single-use plastic bottles. We think that’s ridiculous — we have supercomputers in our pockets, electric cars, AI everything, and hydration has to advance as well,” Colina said.
“Athletes and people with active lifestyles deserve more when it comes to something as vital as hydration. Our goal as a company is to have the biggest positive impact we can, and we feel we can achieve that faster by directly calling out the Gatorades, BodyArmors, and PRIMEs of the world for their B.S. products and marketing.
Remind me: Colina founded O2 in 2014, and since then, the brand has been a major champion of the CrossFit community.
Colina and his team have spearheaded several initiatives directly supporting small affiliates, including a profit-sharing program at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
O2 is also a carbon-negative sports drink, meaning the business model — from production to shipping to consumer purchase and recycling — reduces the global carbon footprint. The company achieves this through sustainable shipping partnerships, low-waste packaging, and putting its drinks in 100% recyclable aluminum cans.
“Part of having the biggest positive impact possible isn’t just about a superior product people can feel good about drinking. It’s also about operating a company in a way that’s in line with our values,” said Colina.
“We feel all companies should be trying to minimize their impact on the environment, and becoming certified carbon neutral was the logical extension of operating a company people are proud to support.”
O2 Hydration: This rebrand reflects, as Colina says, what their customers have been telling them for years — that O2 is more than a recovery drink, but a healthy alternative to popular hydration drinks, like Gatorade.
“People are searching for a healthier sports drink and have been very limited in their options: by bad flavor, high amounts of sugar, and poor environmental stewardship, which we feel people care about as much as we do,” said Colina.
“O2 tastes amazing, only has 1 gram of sugar, has twice the electrolytes as Gatorade, and is carbon negative. We’re excited to more clearly communicate these benefits through our rebrand; to arm people with better knowledge of their hydration choices.”
This Back and Hip Stretch Routine
Want to stretch your hips and back but not sure where to start? Use this easy routine as your guide to get a great stretch in before or after a workout.
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Celebrating a PR, hosting a fundraiser, this, that, or otherwise. Send us a tip.
Congratulations to 15-year-old Sophie Prater from CrossFit Cessnock in New South Wales on the 154 pound/70kg snatch PR.
Pending leaderboard finalization this week, Sophie will be advancing to Age Group Online Semifinals at the end of the month in the Girls 14-15 division.
Jenn Dancer (owner of QTown CrossFit and wife of CrossFit Games athlete Sam Dancer) shares an insightful look into her mindset while parenting a toddler.
Congratulations to Julia Kraus on taking second place in her first ever powerlifting competition last weekend in Milton Keynes, UK, including two PRs in squat and deadlift.
Congratulations to CrossFit Games teen and PRVN athlete RJ Mestre on the 317 pound/143.7kg clean PR.
Kathy Dexter from Hamilton, MT is fundraising for her 545-mile AIDS/LifeCycle Bike Ride from San Francisco, CA to Los Angeles this June.
All proceeds benefit the San Francisco AIDS Foundation and Los Angeles LGBT Center in support of counseling services, screenings, and other life-saving services for individuals with HIV. “These services mean the world to those who need them. And your support means the world to me,” said Kathy.
As a Primary Care Provider, Kathy wakes up at 4:30am to train before a full day of patient care at Bitterroot Health. Whether on her indoor bike (during Montana winter) or at Corvallis Athletics CrossFit, she is working hard to prepare for June—the longest ride she’s ever attempted.
Donations can be made here. Those in the area are also invited to an in-person fundraising event at Imagine Nation Brewing in Missoula, MT on April 15th from 5:30-7:30PM.
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