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Morning Chalk Up

December 1   |   POWERED BY


Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up.

In today’s edition:

  • Shawn Ramirez is back, 2.0 style
  • Why CrossFit affiliates need strongman programming
  • Who to keep an eye on at the Dubai Fitness Championship
  • What is life like in Dubai for an American?
  • Day 1 of the 12 Days of CrossMas Giveaway is here! Get in the holiday spirit and enter for your chance to win 12 amazing prizes from our partner brands
  • How to watch the Dubai Fitness Championship
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“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.” - Theodore Roosevelt

  Shawn Ramirez is Back– “2.0 Style” – After Serving Four-Year Sanction  

Shawn Ramirez is Back– “2.0 Style” – After Serving Four-Year Sanction

When four-time CrossFit Games masters champion Shawn Ramirez received a four-year sanction after a positive drug test at the 2018 CrossFit Games he thought he would walk away from the sport for good.

He spent the next little while appealing the positive test, which “was not cheap,” as it involved having the seven supplements he was taking at the time tested for contaminants.

Sure enough, the sixth supplement he had tested—VitaminB12 droplets he was taking for recovery—was contaminated, which explained the metabolites of GW1515 found in his sample.

Though he appealed, and then took legal action that was eventually settled in court, CrossFit LLC maintained the four-year ruling against Ramirez.

“It was clearly contamination and I proved that, and CrossFit never came back and said it was proven,” said Ramirez, now 48. Instead, they told him his appeal “went over the time (limit).”

“They wanted to stick to their guns no matter what I revelaved,” he added.

As a result, Ramirez was exhausted from trying to prove his case, exhausted by people on social media “slinging the mud” at him, and also exhausted from the sport in general.

“It was a lot. I was tired of it. I just wanted to be a dad. I was mentally and emotionally exhausted from competing all those years…it just wears on you,” he said.

At that point, he thought he was done.

Continue Reading...
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Rocking in the UAE: The Dubai Fitness Championship is upon us and Morning Chalk Up’s Lauren Kalil and Preslie Hirsch are both in the United Arab Emirates. They will be giving us on the ground coverage from Dec. 2-4 on our website, social media and YouTube so stayed glue for regular updates throughout. 🇦🇪

Also, in case you missed it: Kalil spoke to sports analyst Joey Adduci and emcee Bella Martin to reveal their podium picks for the elite women’s field in Dubai.

Dream sponsorship: Two-time reigning CrossFit Games champion Justin Medeiros now has a deal with Chipotle and we’re not sure we could get anymore jealous of this one.

Interesting reads: Should you workout with a cold (paywall) and how to work out like an astronaut (paywall).

  Programming Strongman Workouts “Critical” Says CrossFit Games Athlete Rob Orlando  


Programming Strongman Workouts “Critical” Says CrossFit Games Athlete Rob Orlando

Strongman implements have been a mainstay in elite CrossFit competitions.

From pig flips and snail pushes to Yoke carries and sled pushes and pulls, but it feels like, at least for strict strength elements, Strongman has taken a front seat.  The 2022 CrossFit Games featured a sandbag ladder, while the 2022 Rogue Invitational featured a log press.

It seems like the Strongman modality is being featured in CrossFit like never before. And for those mere mortals hitting class at local affiliates, Strongman experts say it’s time they start implementing it into their weekly training too.

  • “It’s not just necessary, it’s as important and critical as everything else that you do across the gym,” says Rob Orlando, a fixture in the sport of CrossFit and owner and head coach of Hybrid Athletics, a CrossFit Strongman gym with locations in Bridgeport and Stamford, CT.
  • “Any gym owner or programmer who is not, whether it’s intentional or not intentional, plugging this stuff into their program it’s a huge missed opportunity,” he continued.
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  Programming Strongman Workouts “Critical” Says CrossFit Games Athlete Rob Orlando  

Athletes to Watch Beyond the Podium: Dubai Fitness Championship

Ahead of the kick-off to the 10th annual Dubai Fitness Championship, we’re now looking at athletes that will potentially be just outside the podium to watch. Morning Chalk Up’s Lauren Kalil brought on sports analyst Joey Adduci to give an inside look at which men and women athletes he’ll be keeping an eye on to make a breakthrough in Dubai.

Watch Now...
  Life In Dubai From An American Who Lives There  

Life In Dubai From An American Who Lives There

Various stereotypes surrounding Dubai are typically tied to the weather, religion, and riches. And while the emirate boasts beautiful skylines including the tallest building in the world and pristine ocean-front views, there are still major misconceptions surrounding life in Dubai, including for fitness professionals and the fitness community.

Between watching Netflix’s Dubai Bling and scrolling through Google’s responses for Life In Dubai, anyone who hasn’t visited the emirate would be dreadfully confused about what to expect.

Real Dubai life is somewhere between those two extremes. This might not show much during a competition like Dubai Fitness Championship, but hopefully, some of these highlights will help.

Continue Reading...
  Life In Dubai From An American Who Lives There  

12 Days of CrossMas Giveaway

To spice up your holiday season, we have 12 straight days of fun fitness giveaways to get you in the festive spirit.

From Thursday, December 1st to Monday, December 12th we’ll be drawing a lucky winner daily to receive a special prize pack from one of our partners.

Click to enter!
  How to Watch the 2022 Dubai Fitness Championship  

How to Watch the 2022 Dubai Fitness Championship

The tenth annual Dubai Fitness Championship kicks off tomorrow and we’ve got everything you need to know to stay up to date on the action all weekend long. Across three days of workouts programmed by HWPO, 40 athletes in total (20 men, 20 women) from 17 countries will take the competition floor in Dubai, UAE for a chance at some serious prize money.

Who to watch: Competitors from around the world have made the trek to the City of Gold for their chance to earn some shiny hardware on their own to take home. We’ve done a deep dive into the roster:

Schedule: The events, which have not been announced yet at the time of publishing, will be live streamed on YouTube and Dubai Sports TV. As the workouts are released, you can find the details and schedule of events in your local time zone on our Dubai Fitness Championship competition hub.

  • We do know that Friday is off-site in the morning, but no other information is available at this time
  • Saturday and Sunday will take place in the afternoon at Coca-Cola arena

Stay tuned: As the official media partner for the competition, the Morning Chalk Up team will be providing in-depth coverage on the ground, including exclusive athlete interviews and daily recaps on our YouTube pagewebsite and Instagram.



Are You Setting Up Your Bike Properly?

Many of us are assaulted by the Assault Bike regularly. But setting up your bike properly can be the difference between having a good workout or the jelly legs taking over.




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Honey Cinnamon Almond Energy Bites

You’ll love these little bite size energy boosts! Packed with protein and full of fiber, you’ll be happy you tried this easy recipe.



A Pair of Grips That Don’t Require Chalk

What if we told you that you never had to chalk your hands again on pull ups? Element 26’s IsoComp Gymnastic Hand Grips are made to stick to any surface (whether it’s a speal bar, powder coated, plain steel, or if someone’s blisters are still on there) and help you save precious time in workouts without taking a break at the chalk bucket. Use code “MCU” for 10% off!



These Three Stretches For Your Back

If you’re sore from heavy deadlifts, backsquats or even sitting in a chair for too long, your back might be tight! These three simple stretches are easy to do and a great way to loosen up the muscles surrounding your spine.


Share Your CrossFit Story


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

  • Andrea (Andy) De Beni from NOMA CrossFit in Turin, Italy takes leg day to the next level with these single-leg deadlifts at 243 pounds/110kg.
  • Fittest in Cape Town athlete Richard Wollboldt shares his journey back to the gym since rupturing his ACL 6 months ago.
  • Congraulations Braden Footer from CrossFit Krypton in Chesapeake, VA on the 315 pound/143kg clean.
  • Convgratulations to Julia Hannaford from Ocean Fitness in Wollongong, AUS on the 198 pound/90kg snatch PR during the Down Under Championships.
9/30: 15th Anniversary and Birthday Brawl (York, PA)
9/30: Barbell Brawl VIII (Kennett Square, PA)
9/30: No Weak Links: Cuff Links (Marcy, NY)
9/30 - 10/1: Southie Showdown (Boston, MA)
9/30 - 10/1: Sango Games 2023 (Clarksville, TN)
10/6 - 10/8: Marbella Championship (Marbella, Spain)
10/7: KJ Classic (Longmont, CO)
10/7: Babes with Barbells (Huntington, WV)
10/7: Pitness At The Mill (Canton, GA)
10/7: 2023 KJ Classic (Longmont, CO)
10/7: FitoberFest (Prairie Village, KS)
10/7: Battle of Branded One at Redstone CrossFit (Littleton, CO)
10/13 - 10/15: Midwest Championship (Rochester, MN)
10/13 - 10/15: Midwest Championship (Rochester, MN)
10/13 - 10/15: Crash Crucible (Spartanburg, SC)
10/14: Triple Threat Terror 2023 (Forney, TX)
10/14: Oscar Mike Challenge (Lakeville, MN)
10/14: T-Town Throwdown (Toledo, OH)
10/14: Babes and Barbells (Asbury Park, NJ)
10/14: Scream & Clean III (Danbury, CT)
10/14: Girls Gone Rx Canada: Belleville (Bellevile, Canada)
10/14: Best Babes West Fargo (West Fargo, ND)
10/14: Best Babes Columbus GA (Columbus, GA)
10/14: Best Babes Illinois (Byron, IL)
10/14: 8th Annual Kilo CrushFest Competition (Hampton, VA)
10/14 - 10/15: 059 Classic (Modena, Italy)
10/14: Strength and Speed (Feasterville, PA)
10/14 - 10/15: The Vanguard (Lakeland, FL)
10/14: Girls Gone Rx Mesa (Mesa, AZ)
10/14: Girls Gone Rx DC (Alexandria, VA)
10/14: Girls Gone Rx Sedalia (Sedalia, MO)
10/14: Best Babes Massachusetts (Beverly, MA)
10/15: Kares CrossFit October Showdown (Georgetown, Guyana)
10/20 - 10/21: AAYMCA CrossFit Throwdown (Anderson, SC)
10/20 - 10/21: AAYMCA CrossFit Throwdown (Anderson, SC)
10/21: Festivus Games – Pairs (Savannah, GA)
10/21: Barbells For Bullies: Portland (Hillsboro, OR)
10/21: 401 Fall Throwdown (Smithfield, RI)
10/27 - 10/29: Oslo Throwdown (Oslo, Norway)
10/27 - 10/28: Star City Fittest (Roanoke, VA)
10/28 - 10/29: The Ghostly Games (Fayetteville, GA)
10/28: Wodtoberfest (Owosso, MI)
10/29 - 11/19: CHLKDUP BOX LEAGUE – NASH (Nashville, TN)
10/29 - 11/19: CHLKDUP BOX LEAGUE – BHAM (Birmingham, AL)
11/3 - 11/4: Florida Grid League Championship (Orlando, FL)
11/4 - 11/5: Costa Barcelona Fitness Challenge (Vilanova i la Geltrú, Barcelona, Spain)
11/4 - 11/5: Hold Fast Competition Individual (Gerenzano, Italy)
11/4: Sunshine SmackDown (Bedford Hills, NY)
11/4: Witch City Throwdown (Salem, MA)
11/4: Barbell Babes Lorton (Lorton, VA)
11/11: Freakin’ Gauntlet (Pembroke Pines, FL)
11/11: The Meadowlands Classic (Carlstadt, NJ)
11/11: Barbell Massacre 8 (Dahlonega, GA)
11/11: War of the Masters (Elkton, MD)
11/11: War of the Masters (Elkton, MD)
11/18: Best Babes Dallas (Dallas, TX)
11/18: Best Babes Philly (Philadelphia, PA)
11/18: Best Babes Iowa (Mason City, IA)
11/18: Girls Gone Rx Salt Lake City (West Haven, UT)
11/18: Teams Of The Midway: 2 Person Teams (Cary, IL)
11/18: Friendsgiving (Ambler, PA)
11/18: Turkey Bash (Chatham, IL)

See all upcoming events

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