CrossFit Coal continues Memorial Day Murph Challenge

BECKLEY, WV (WOAY) – On Memorial Day, CrossFit gyms across the country choose to honor Lieutenant Michael Murphy, a Navy SEAL who was killed in Afghanistan as he led a four-man SEAL team in Operation Red Wings.

They do this with a workout called the Murph Challenge.

At CrossFit Coal in Beckley, members of the gym did the intense workout inspired by Murphy which consisted of a one-mile run, 100 pull-ups, 200 push-ups, 300 air squats finished with another mile run all while wearing a 20 pound vest. 

Co-owner Chip Williams kicks things off at each session by telling the story of Lt. Murphy and explaining the “why” of the workout.

“This is a great way to start Memorial Day every year. Even though the workout is named after Michael Murphy it really helps us start the day focusing on what Memorial Day is really about which is remembering the men and women who gave their lives in service to the country,” Williams said. 

Even though the workout sees a large turnout every year, this year they broke it up into 5 workout sessions with 16 athletes allowed at each to follow the distancing guidelines. 

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Anna Saunders is a weekend reporter for WOAY. With a diploma from Princeton Senior High School and a mother from Fayette County, she is no stranger to the area. She received a degree in Media Arts and Design from James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia and wanted to return home to start her career as a reporter.