Happy Friday and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up. We are following up on several stories that have come out of Wednesday’s town hall and our exclusive interview with Eric Roza. Check out the town hall recap, Tommy Marquez on the future of Sanctionals and the sport, and Emily Beers on Roza’s thoughts about gym metrics.
Also, the Master’s Fitness Collective Championship kicked off yesterday in Fort Wayne, IN. Patrick Clark has a full recap.
“If our yesterdays are in a state of good repair, they provide strength for today. If not repaired, they create havoc.”– Gordon Macdonald
CrossFit CEO Eric Roza Lays Out Bold Agenda in First Town Hall
“If we are successful, I think that when we look back five or ten years from now, I think 80 or 90 percent of CrossFit gyms are going to be outside the U.S.” That was one of the first bold statements that new CrossFit CEO Eric Roza made in the 80-minute Town Hall session he co-hosted with Director of Training, Nicole Carroll. Going forward, Roza plans to hold a similar Town Hall event every quarter.
One big thing: In answering questions from the global CrossFit community, Roza began to frame a long-term vision for CrossFit LLC, introduced several developments at the top of the company and revealed some of his top priorities.
A new mission statement: CrossFit’s mission “is to be the world’s leading platform for health, happiness and performance.”
In his discussion of the new mission statement, Roza highlighted health (which he defined as being “pain-free” and living a long life), performance (being able to do the things you want to do and get better at them) and happiness (“it’s gotta feel good”).
Importantly though, he also talked about the fact that this is a global mission, which is why it includes the word “world,” and that he purposefully chose the word “platform.”
Roza: “Here’s what’s important about ‘platform’ is people build shit on top of CrossFit, right?” He noted that between nutrition, apparel, publishers, equipment manufacturers, box owners and event operators, there are more than 100,000 who make their living in the CrossFit space.
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CrossFit CEO Eric Roza Says Client Acquisition and Growth are Key Metrics
The price is wrong: When it comes to membership prices and average client value, CrossFit’s new owner and CEO Eric Roza said, during an exclusive interview with the Morning Chalk Up, that there’s work to do in the affiliate community.
“I’m highly confident that a lot (of gyms) are undercharging and a lot are overcharging. I’m highly confident of that,” he said, adding that he has come across some gyms in developing nations who are charging members as little as $23 a month.
“(And they’re) paying a $3,000 affiliate fee, and they’re not very big boxes,” he added.
Eric Roza on Sanctionals: “That’s going to be a bigger and bigger ecosystem.”
Eric Roza’s declaration Wednesday during his first Town Hall live stream that the Open would be returning to its original home in February was met with a warm reception and also included news about the likelihood that the date for the CrossFit Games will also be moving further back in the calendar year.
One major development that was talked about, but not in great detail, was the middle portion of the season — currently inhabited by 28 independently owned Sanctioned events in 19 countries — and what changes if any will take place under the new regime moving forward.
A seat at the table: Roza made it clear that the Sanctioned events would have a place in the future of the CrossFit Games season stating that “event operators, that’s going to be a bigger and bigger ecosystem,” and “we like the grab bag of crazy events operated by partners” when discussion the future but stopped short of providing a timeline of how they would fit within the revised time frame outlined by the Open and CrossFit Games.
Justin Bergh, General Manager of the CrossFit Games sent out an email to all of the Sanctioned event organizers 16 minutes prior to the Town Hall notifying them of the Open date change along with additional details mentioned during the town hall in addition to the assurance that more meetings would be scheduled to address timing and format of 2021 along with COVID-19 contingency plans.
Bergh: “ We are working to ensure that the 2021 calendar of events builds on our existing event partners, as our goal is the success and growth of the entire CrossFit ecosystem.”
It’s unclear if CrossFit HQ will add another qualifying step between the Open and the Games in addition to the Sanctionals that stick around. Timing-wise and from a storytelling perspective it would make sense if most Sanctionals fit somewhere in between the two on the calendar.
Masters Fitness Collective Championship Day One Recap
The opening day of the Masters Fitness Collective Championship featured a little bit of cardio and strength. The 93 athletes who competed on Thursday took on three events, the opening event called “Muddy Waters” featured three rounds for time of 20 single-arm kettlebell snatches followed by a 100 meter swim, event two and three were combined and included four minutes to establish a 1-rep max snatch followed by a 1-mile run and concluded with the athlete establishing another 1-rep max snatch.
Men: Four-time individual Regional athlete Kyle Ruth ended the day with a 29-point lead thanks to two event wins and a runner-up finish in the 1-mile run. Matt Kallai denied Ruth a clean sweep of the day’s event, finishing the mile run with a time of 5:22. Kallai also added a runner-up finish in “Muddy Waters” to put him in second on the overall leaderboard. Ryon Anderson sits in third, just six points behind Kallai.
Women: In what was expected to be a close division didn’t disappoint after day one as Samantha Stine holds a one point lead over fellow Regional athletes Briana Gaipa and April Payne who are tied for second. Stine won two events, “Muddy Waters” and the one-mile run. Gaipa had two runner-up finishes and Payne recorded three top-four finishes. Five-time Regional athlete Shannon Zimmerman won the snatch event with a combined weight of 355 LBs. Rachel Green is in fourth just 16 points out of the lead.
Many people may not know this, but the reigning Fittest Man on Earth, Mat Fraser, is an avid investor. Check out this episode of the SimplFinance podcast with Shaun White to learn more about Fraser’s career and get some deep insight into his investing strategies.
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Proper meatballs seem like they might require too much prep for a post-workday meal, but this recipe strips them down to the most essential elements. The key is making the meatballs larger so they actually have time to brown in the oven without overcooking.
Congratulations to Nathan M., who was the first to correctly answer how many Individual Games podium medals has Iceland won. The correct answer was Twelve: Annie Thorisdottir – Five, Katrin Davidsottir – Three, Sara Sigmundsdottir – Two, Björgvin Karl Guðmundsson – Two. This was the third time that Nathan was the first person to correctly answer the trivia question.
Today’s question: Which two athletes have the most Games Top Ten Individual finishes?
Here a couple of cool podcast episodes and fundraisers to check out:
Dr. Stacy Sims: On the most recent episode of the Mind Muscle Project, Dr. Stacy Sims joined the team to talk about harmful practices in women’s sports. The main topics covered include female gymnastics, concussions and menopause training.
Cole Sager: In this episode of the Pursuing Health podcast with Julie Foucher-Urcuyo and Dani Urcuyo, the hosts talk with six-time CrossFit Games athlete, Cole Sager. One of the biggest takeaways is that Sager wants to be known as the kindest person anyone has ever met, even more than the fittest.
Barbells for Bullies: The competition “As Many Rescues as Possible,” aimed at helping rescues and leveraging fitness as a force for social good will be held online and in-person in select locations. It’s only $20 to enter and the net proceeds go to rescue facilities in Colorado, Pennsylvania, New York and Florida.
Barbells for Boobs: The first 100 individuals who raise $1200 on their Barbells for Boobs fundraising page this year will earn a 2020 Special Edition BFB Elieiko Performance Weightlifting bar. Learn more and get started!