Your Coffee is ready.

What the 2018 CrossFit Regionals Can Teach Us for 2021

Morning Chalk Up

February 1   |   POWERED BY


Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up.

In today’s edition:

  • Looking back at the 2018 CrossFit Games Regionals, part one of a four-part series.
  • Affiliate owners report mixed results for January business rush.
  • CrossFit Wonderland is embracing the Open, from home.

We love seeing your story tips, quotes and PRs roll in. Keep sending them to [email protected].

QUOTE OF THE DAY + Send us a Quote

“To ensure good health: eat lightly, breathe deeply, live moderately, cultivate cheerfulness, and maintain an interest in life.” - William Londen

  What’s Old is New Again: How the 2018 Regionals Provide Insights for 2021 

What’s Old is New Again: How the 2018 Regionals Provide Insights for 2021

Editor’s Note: This is the first in a series of articles that look back on the 2018 CrossFit Games Regionals.

The 2018 CrossFit Games season was a high watermark for the sport for several reasons. That year, 416,000 athletes competed in the Open. Media coverage at the Games peaked and CBS was interested in expanding even further. And, the Regionals fields were stacked with talent that has continued to dominate the sport of fitness.

Sweeping changes in 2019 shifted the landscape and replaced Regionals with the Open/Sanctional qualifying system. Now, the tide has turned again and the 2021 season format once again offers a multi-stage, funnel system — Open-Quarterfinals-Semifinals-Games.

One big thing: The 2021 season very closely resembles the 2018 season; so taking a look back offers an opportunity to prepare for what’s in store this year.

Remind me: In 2018 there were nine Regionals, five of those were in North America, two were in Europe, one was in Australia, and one was in South America.

  • While the details for this year’s Semifinals are still somewhat unknown, we’ve been told there will be 10 and that they will be based on geography (“Continents” to be more exact).
Continue Reading...
SPONSORED Element26_1578929880
Try The Best No-Chalk Grips on the Market - Risk Free.

Try The Best No-Chalk Grips on the Market - Risk Free.

With the Open upon us, every rep counts. The Element 26 IsoGrips give you that unique advantage to PR your unbroken pull-ups with their insane stick-to-the-bar. No chalk breaks to slow you down between sets means they’re designed for faster transitions to destroy your PRs, not your body.

Element 26 is so confident that you will love our IsoGrips insane stick-to-the-bar, we’re offering a full 30-day refund, no questions asked. Give them a try and if you don’t like them for any reason, simply return them for a full refund.


  • Alexis Johnson, three-time Games athlete who is working her way back into competition shape after suffering an Achilles tendon tear in early 2020, suffered a setback last Saturday. Johnson tore her right UCL while receiving a snatch and had surgery to repair it.
    • Johnson: “Just another bump in the road — onward and upward.”
  • Katrin Davidsdottir announced her new partnership with Super Coffee. She became a fan after finding their low sugar creamers and is now an investor and partner.
    • Davidsdottir: “I love my slow mornings. It’s really important to me that I get sit down with my coffee.”
  • Flashback: One year ago yesterday, January 31, 2020, we published our first story on the coronavirus, “Coronavirus and CrossFit: Everything You Need to Know.” At that time there had been approximately 200 deaths and 11,000 cases attributed to the virus worldwide.
  • The CrossFit Games released the first part in a three-part interview series with Director of Sport, Dave Castro. In this video, Castro breaks down some details about the Open and Quarterfinal stages of the 2021 season.
  • ICYMI: The owner of CrossFit Sine Pari in Buck’s County, PA participated in the January 6 storming of the US Capitol and on Friday was arrested after a federal warrant had been issued. After learning of the arrest, CrossFit LLC reached out to her, and when she didn’t deny the allegations, terminated her gym’s affiliation.
  • Over the weekend: Athletes descended in Austin, TX to compete in the Fittest Experience. Roy Gamboa and Andrea Nisler walked away with the top spots.
    1. Roy Gamboa – 520 | Andrea Nisler – 650
    2. Travis Williams – 500 | Danielle Brandon – 580
    3. Phil Toon – 460 | Samantha Pugh – 510
    4. Hal Fisher – 430 | Paige Semenza – 490
    5. Josh Woodhull – 415 | Christine Kolenbrander – 480a
  Affiliate Owners Report Mixed Results on New Year's Business Rush in January 2021 


Affiliate Owners Report Mixed Results on New Year's Business Rush in January 2021

2020 was anything from normal, and gym owners took a collective sigh of relief as it ended. But, how will 2021 unfold?

The big picture: Affiliates had it rough as the fitness industry has been one of the hardest hit by COVID-19 regulations. After a year of business under the weight of a pandemic, affiliate owners had high hopes for the post-New Years rush that occurs most years. We spoke to several and learned that some gyms have experienced the rush, while others have not.

Continue Reading...
  Why the CrossFit Wonderland Community is Embracing the Open, From Home 

Why the CrossFit Wonderland Community is Embracing the Open, From Home

A closed gym and a government-mandated 8 PM curfew: That’s the current pandemic-related reality for the members of the Montreal, Quebec-based CrossFit Wonderland.

This grim reality, however, hasn’t stopped owners Caroline Lambray and 2020 CrossFit Games finalist Jeff Adler from successfully promoting the Open to their clientele this year. Just like any other year.

  • Even though their members will be relegated to the equipment-free, at-home version of the Open, Lambray and Adler have promised to “make the experience worth it no matter what situation we are in,” said Lambray, whose gym has been closed for eight of the last 12 months.
  • The reason: Lambray is adamant that even bodyweight workouts from home will be able to give her clients what the Open always does: inspiration and motivation, and a sense of achievement and appreciation for their overall health. It also “helps put everything in perspective,” she said.

The details: After losing clients due to being closed for so long, CrossFit Wonderland currently has 70 members. Lambray is hoping to get at least 40 people registered for the Open. They’re not quite there yet, but “people often pull the trigger in the last two weeks,” she said.

Continue Reading...
  Why the CrossFit Wonderland Community is Embracing the Open, From Home 

Get the Morning Chalk Up App

Download Today...


A 30-Minute Advanced Rowing Challenge

Are you up for a challenge? Give this 30-minute, "step-up, step-down" rowing workout a try. Shane Farmer from Dark Horse Rowing takes you through a warm-up, workout and cool down, but get ready, it's a burner.




Dial in Your Nutrition

Tired of killing yourself in the gym and kitchen and still not seeing the results you’re after? With WAG’s one-on-one nutrition coaching, you’ll get in the best mental and physical shape of your life, so that all of that hard work pays off. Join the 25,000+ on TeamWAG to start looking, feeling and living at 100% you.



Annie Thorisdottir On Her Training Post-Partum and the 2021 Season

In case you missed it, last week two-time Games champion, Annie Thorisdottir joined Justin LoFranco to discuss training through her pregnancy and as a new mom, her approach to the 2021 Games season and her thoughts on the new season format. Thorisdottir likes that it will bring back the feel of regionals, saying “we need that in-person event where you’re competing against the athletes that are trying to qualify for the CrossFit Games.”



Your First Pistol Squat

This simple program from the team at Train Your Weakness will help you develop the strength and mobility to get your first pistol squat in just six weeks.



Instant Pot Carnitas Like a Pro

Typically, the pork in a carnitas recipe is slowly braised on the stovetop or oven, but this instant pot method is faster, easier and just as tasty. Cut the pork shoulder into cubes first and make sure that the seasoning is coated on all sides. The pressure cooker with infuse the meat with all the delicious spices while keeping it juicy and tender.


Chalk Up Highlights is our section dedicated to celebrating our community’s wins in the gym. Follow @ChalkUpHighlights and submit your highlight to [email protected] to be featured.

12/9 - 12/11: Fall Series Throwdown (Desio, Italy)
12/17: The Midwest Championship (Warrensburg, MO)
1/15 - 1/31: Athens Throwdown Qualifiers (Athens, Greece)
1/21 - 1/22: Modena Challenge: Beginner and Master (Modena, Italy)

See all upcoming events

Your Coffee is ready.