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The U.S. Army Assemblies the Fittest Team of Soldiers

Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up. Today’s edition is sponsored by EPIC Provisions.

Throwing it back to celebrate an OG superfood, egg yolks! A quick reminder on what makes egg yolks so epic: they have a higher proportion of vitamins and minerals than egg whites, contain essential fatty acids, and are high in all essential amino acids. Click here to check out more about what inspired EPIC Provisions to launch a new bar line that includes egg yolks.


“Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.” — Henry Ford

The U.S. Army Wants the Fittest People in America


Some backstory.

U.S. Army 1st Sgt. Glenn Grabs had an idea: If the Army wants the fittest people in America, then the Army would need to interact with the fittest people in America. Grabs, an L1 CrossFit coach, knew just where to look.

So last November, the U.S. Army notified servicemembers they were building a competitive CrossFit team, the Warrior Fitness Team.


“Having a functional fitness team in national competitions gives the U.S. Army an opportunity to interact directly with the fittest people in the American population,” Grabs said. “We are looking for dedicated, driven Soldiers. We want Soldiers who are looking for an opportunity to perform, develop and assist in the recruiting mission.”

The Warrior Fitness Team will represent the Army at fitness competitions, Sanctionals and health expositions, helping to bring awareness to the Army and the recruiters at those events.

More than 350 Army soldiers applied for the team. In February, 25 selected applicants came to Fort Knox, KY to try out through three grueling individual workouts, one team workout and a personal interview.

Fifteen soldiers made the cut, many of them already established competitors like 1st Lt. Chandler Smith, who just earned his ticket to the CrossFit Games at Rogue Invitational, and Anthony Fuhrman, an Army recruiter who recently won the World’s Strongest Man competition in his category and placed second on the premiere episode of NBC’s The Titan Games.

A strong start.

In March, seven of the 15 members traveled to Columbus to compete in CrossFit Endeavor, a competition at the 2019 Arnold Sports Festival. The team took sixth place in their inaugural competition. Sgt. 1st Class Anthony Fuhrman also secured a top 10 spot in the Strongman division.

Then two months later, Smith became the first an only member of the team to compete at a Sanctional and earned the Warriors their first invite to the CrossFit Games.

“Having a functional fitness team attend and compete at events like the Arnold has given the U.S. Army an opportunity to interact directly with the fittest people in the American population,” said Grabs.

But it is not only the strength the Army wants to showcase; it’s the mindset and attitude that Army soldiers inhabit. 

Continue reading…

2019-2020 SEASON.

Italian Showdown Revamps Their Qualification Process

Earlier this week, we reported on how the qualification processes for Sanctionals next season are starting to shape up. Now the CrossFit Italian Showdown has recently joined the ranks of revamping their qualification process.

Open registration for all: In an email to the Morning Chalk Up, Event Director Carlo Strati detailed how the event is doing away with a traditional qualification process, and direct entry to the event would be open to everyone.

  • There will be 1,500 athlete slots total for Individuals, teams, and masters, that will be assigned on a first-come, first-served basis. All athletes who register will be admitted to the first day of competition.
  • All athletes will compete on day 1 in what’s being labeled as an “Open division,” and all athletes will face three elimination workouts.
  • There will be Rx and scaled versions of every workout, and athletes will have the choice of which version they choose. Any scaled score will automatically be ranked beneath an Rx score similar to the Open.
  • The field will be narrowed to roughly 300 athletes after day one, and after day three, the top five individuals and five teams will advance to the final showdown.

So far, not a single Sanctional in 2019-2020 season is offering up a wildcard. The only invites being offered are through earned exemptions like top ten at the 2019 CrossFit Games, but there are much more clearly defined rules for exemptions next season. 

For what it’s worth: Last year the CrossFit Italian Showdown had a qualification process that was unique from any other event, and so far it seems they’re keeping that trend going with their new system in 2020.

  • In 2019, the CrossFit Italian Showdown was the only sanctioned event of the season to not have a team competition at their event, but that will change in the 2019-2020 season.

Things To…


WATCH: Pat Vellner Aiming to Overthrow Mat Fraser
Will Edmonds sat down with Pat Vellner to discuss his plans to return to Madison, WI this summer with plans to overthrow Mat Fraser’s long-standing title of the Fittest Man on Earth. Vellner tells Edmonds that “everyone is beatable” including Fraser, and he intends to beat him.


HEAR: The Wild Card Spot with Hunter McIntyre
Brute Strength podcast host Michael Cazayoux welcomes guest Hunter McIntyre to discuss his wildcard to the 2019 CrossFit Games, how he is training to get there and his yearly ritual. Also, there’s a bit of a bet surrounding a belly button ring.


GET: Free ButcherBox Bacon For Life
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GIVE: Your Knees Some Love
These compression knee sleeves will be your new BFF, pre-curved to offer full knee coverage to keep your knees warm, improve blood flow, and reduce strain and swelling. Now available in their new lightning bolt design, these microbial neoprene sleeves will hold up during the toughest WODs and never smell funky.


EAT: Lobster Salad with Chives and Lemon
Lobster rolls make for an epic summer meal, but the truth is, you don’t really need the split top hot dog buns or all that melted butter. Lightly dressed with mayo and finished off with a big squeeze of lemon juice and freshly chopped chives, lobster salad tastes incredible on its own.


Today’s edition of the Morning Chalk Up is sponsored by

Chalk Up Community

  • SWISS TEAM CHALLENGE — This Saturday, June 22, the Swiss Team Challenge will take place in Switzerland. Affiliates can register and compete at their own box at a time most convenient for them.
  • CROSSFIT COMING SOON — Construction is underway at the Holdrege YMCA to include CrossFit in Holdrege, NB. They hope to open around Labor Day.
  • OPEN HOUSE — Axle CrossFit in Carson City, NV is holding a grand opening this Saturday. There are door gifts and a raffle as well as snacks, beverages, shopping, massage, games, and more.
  • BENEFIT COMPETITION — On Saturday, July 13 The BeneFIT Challenge will take place at Murray State University. All proceeds will be donated to three non-profit organizations: St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, Sleep in Heavenly Peace
    and Soup for the Soul.

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

Bear Komplex just released new grips • 2019 CrossFit Games athlete Katelin Van Zyl has joined VERVE FitnessJosh Bridges, Rich Froning and Dan Bailey’s Good Dudes Coffee has launched • You can head to Bali with Jen Smith and Jessica GriffithBradley Williams back squats 265 poundsDaniel Kunitz clean and jerks 243 pounds • Nathan Damron hang cleans 418 pounds for two • Mia Akerlund jerks 265 pounds

…and Tommy Hackenbruck shows us all how quickly one can fade.

Take a Rest Day — How important are rest days and how often should you take them? The answer is different for every athlete, but the importance of rest days stays the same.

CrossFit French Throwdown Released Event 7– 

For time:
30M Handstand walk
50 Alternating one leg squats
50 Box Jump overs
50 Box jump overs
50 Alternating one leg squats
30M Handstand walk
Time cap: 15 min

Talking Elite Fitness on PED News — Sean Woodland and Tommy Marquez discuss the recent news that CrossFit Mayhem Independence’s Elly Kabboord tested positive for Clenbuterol. They offer four theories on why and how Kabboord would have tested positive: 1.) Spiked drink, 2.) Got caught at the end of a cycle, 3.) Ate contaminated meat, 4.) Tainted supplement.

— Marquez: “Elly Kabboord tested positive for a substance called clenbuterol….it’s used as a cutting agent for bodybuilders to help stimulate lean muscle growth and burn fat…Outside of the U.S. and Europe, it is also used as a growth agent in livestock.”

— Marquez: “It doesn’t kind of jump off the page as something you would use for CrossFit. And this is only the third time that it has shown up in a positive test in the history of CrossFit.”

— Sean Woodland: “I am going to come into this believing that she is telling the truth. That she didn’t knowingly put this in her system.”

Adrian Conway on the Pregnant Athletes and Brand Sponsorships– Adrian Conway, co-owner of FNX, posted his thoughts on the news that Nuun had recently added pregnancy clauses to the contracts of athletes like Annie Thorisdottir, protecting them should the decide to  become pregnant.

— “To me this is a no brainer. I’ve never thought about having this as a clause or something that needed to specifically be present, because the relationship I’ve always envisioned to have with an athlete is much more than performance based or performance biased….but really it’s a partnership, at least that’s how we view a sponsporship style relationship.

— On other brands: “I think if there are brands out there that are not supporting these women when it’s time to make that choice to build their family or support their family, shame on you.”


“First Davidsdottir, Now Toomey Exits Reebok,” by Justin LoFranco, Morning Chalk Up 

Last week, when NOBULL announced they’d stolen one of Reebok’s star athletes — Katrin Davidsdottir — from their lineup and it couldn’t have come at a worse time: the announcement came the day before Reebok was set to launch the Nano 9.0, their first update in nearly a year and five months.

Since the announcement, rumors have been circulating that Reebok would lose another headliner — Tia-Clair Toomey. Yesterday, Reebok confirmed that Toomey has left.

Reebok in a statement to Morning Chalk Up: “Tia is no longer under contract with Reebok. We were unable to reach agreement on terms of a new contract. We wish her the very best in the future.”
“We are fortunate to have some amazing CrossFit athletes on our roster such as Annie Thorisdottir, Camille Leblanc-Bazinet, Rich Froning and Patrick Vellner, among others.  And, we’re always looking to partner with athletes who fit with the Reebok brand.”

What’s at stake: Davidsdottir and now Toomey’s departure is just another major blow to the brand who once dominated the upper rungs of the sport of CrossFit. Reebok’s contract as marquee sponsor only lasts through the 2020 CrossFit Games, and in the past few years ceded a lot of ground to Nike and upstart NOBULL.

What we’re hearing: Tia-Clair Toomey is also moving to NOBULL, though NOBULL declined to comment.

For what it’s worth: A week ago, she was pictured wearing a pair of NOBULL’s knit runners.


6/21 – 6/23: The Bacon Beatdown (Daytona Beach, FL)
6/21 – 6/23: The MiHi Games (Glendale, CO)
6/22: The Brethren Throwdown (Morgan Hill, CA)
6/22: Strength in Our Streets (Indianapolis, IN)
6/22 – 6/23: Clash on the Concrete (Miamisburg, OH)
6/22: Femme Royale (Fort Atkinson, WI)
6/22: OUTWOD (Winter Garden, FL)
6/22: Flower City Throwdown – Men’s Division (Rochester, NY)
6/22: Barbells and Beer at CrossFit Electric City (Anderson, SC)
6/22: 2019 Midsummer Melee (Houston, TX)
6/22: Girls of Summer Competition (Katy, TX)
6/22: Asbury Park Games (Asbury, NJ)
6/22: New Wods on the Block (Lubbock, TX)
6/22: Trained to Go Summer Series 2019 (Raliegh, NC)
6/22: Fifth Annual Box Crawl (Torrance, CA)
6/22: Barbells For Bullies Detroit (Farmington Hills, MI)
6/22: Barbells For Bullies Raleigh (Wake Forest, NC)
6/22: Big Orange Brawl (Knoxville, TN)
6/22: Gut Check at Unfinished Athletics (Pottstown, PA)
6/22: OUTWOD (Sunnyside, NY)
6/22: The Rookie Rumble at CrossFit PowerHour (Lebanon, NJ)
6/22: CrossFit Wicked (Middleton, MA)
6/23: Third annual Bro Royale (Fort Atkinson, WI)
6/28: Boomtown Summer Throwdown (Burkburnett, TX)
6/28 – 6/29: The NorCal Classic (West Sacramento, CA)
6/28 – 6/30: CrossFit French Throwdown (Yvelines, France)
6/29: Master’s Of The Midway: Team Edition (Lake In the Hills, IL)
6/29: Girls Just Want to Have Fun (Raeford, NC)
6/29: 2019 Chattanooga Classic (Chattanooga, TN)
6/29: Partner Throwdown Part Deux (Apple Valley, MN)
6/29: Unicus Athletics Summer Slam 2019 (Denton, TX)
6/29: 2019 Soul Games (Miami, FL)
6/29: The Freedom Games (Greenwood, SC)
6/29: OUTWOD (Collingwood, ON)
6/29: The Mountain Meltdown Twin Cities (Afton Alps, MN)
7/5 – 7/6: The UG Games (Collingwood, ON)
7/6: The Guardian Games (Lebanon, OH)
7/6: 2019 Rex Rumble 8 (Ocala, FL)
7/13: Warrior Affiliate League Barbellas (Anaheim, CA)
7/13: Wods For A Cause Nova Scotia (Bedford, Nova Scotia)
7/13: The Mountain Meltdown Wilmot (Wilmot Mountain, WI)
7/13: Battle of the Beasts (Hudson,NY)
7/13: The Freedom Fitness Festival (Gainesville, FL)
7/13: River’s End Rampage 2019 (Sharpsburg, KY)
7/13 – 7/14: The BeneFIT Challenge (Murray, KY)
7/20: The CFB Gymkhana (Burlington, VT)
7/20: Masters Mayhem (Kilgore, TX)
7/20: Belmar Beatdown (Belmar, NJ)
7/20: Battle at the Falls (Granite Falls, NC)
7/20: Old Timers Classic (Williamsburg, VA)
7/20: 2019 McCall Throwdown (McCall, ID)
7/20 – 7/21: Battle of the Barbells (Nashville,TN)
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)

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