ROCKFORD – Navy lieutenant Michael Murphy died on June 28, 2005 while serving in Afghanistan. On Memorial Day, CrossFit gyms here at home and across the country perform the “Murph” workout in his memory.
“The hour I take out of my day to do this is a remembrance for me to really appreciate everything that they do for us everyday,” says CrossFit trainer and Murph participant Heather Baier.
The CrossFit Supercell gym in Rockford hosted dozens coming together on Memorial Day. After a warmup, a pause to hear the military Taps, and getting on the necessary gear, the “Murph” workout begins.
“One mile run, you come back in, 100 pull ups, 200 push ups, 300 air squats, finish it off with a one mile run,” says CrossFit trainer and Murph participant Dina Duy. “All while wearing a 20-pound weight vest for men, 14-pound weight vest for women.”
Competitors empty the tank and leave everything on the floor after a lot of training.
“High volume of air squats, we have 300 coming at us…getting used to wearing the vest with that. We’ve been practicing for about three weeks,” Duy says.
Murph is for everyone – some do it in partners, others without the vest, others scale to their ability.
“You can make it as difficult or as adaptable as you want,” says Murph participant Kirk Swanson. “It’s fun that everyone does it together, everyone is at different levels, everyone is still exhausted at the end.”
The buy-in to Murph is communal – they’re all in it together.
“Everyone pushes each other to finish it,” Baier says. “No one will leave that floor until everyone has finished. If we need to run another mile to help that last person finish that last mile, that’s what we’ll all do.”
If you’re interested in CrossFit Supercell, you can visit their website here.