Fallen soldiers honored through Murph Challenge at CrossFit Central

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Memorial Day is a time to honor and remember the brave men and women who died serving our country.

There are a number of ways to remember our nation’s finest, and over at CrossFit Central in downtown Austin, athletes spent their day competing in the Murph Challenge.

“One hundred pull ups, 200 pushups, 300 air squats, 1 mile,” said CrossFit Central Co-owner Jeremy Thiel, as he broke down what the challenge looked like.

The challenge honors fallen Navy Seal Lt. Michael Murphy, and as the years have gone by, more and more people have joined in on the challenge.

“We are here to honor not only Lt. Murphy, but all the men and women that have sacrificed and served for our country,” said Devon Kiernan, who completed the challenge.

American flags and even patriotic singing could be heard as participants knocked out their workouts.

“It is just a tradition, you know,” said Elijah Quartey. “We’ve got a soft spot in our heart for our veterans, and we love getting after it and remembering them.”

These workouts took place as Austin has seen heat advisories over the last few days. Some participants are newer to Austin and not as used to the heat as others.

Gavin Thomas and Felicity Moxon are from England and tell KXAN that the Murph Challenge is starting to gain more popularity across the pond, but it’s a little cooler there.

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“I think the first workout I did here, I had to reign it in a little bit because I was thinking back in England, then I had a moment and was like, ‘Oh, I am feeling it,’ so I had to reign it in and slowly build back up,” said Moxon.

Thomas says the heat plays a roll in anyone’s workout, but if you train properly and stay hydrated, you should be good.

“What CrossFit Central do amazingly well is they built us up to Murph,” said Thomas. “So they scaled it to start with and got us prepped for it, and we have climatized to the heat,” said Thomas.

The heat did not hold back any athletes on Monday though.

“We could see anywhere from 150 to 200 athletes and doing the Murph Challenge,” said Thiel.

Thiel says staying hydrated and knowing what time of day to workout is very important for these athletes. He says if you are working out in the Texas heat, make sure it is during a time when the temperatures are a little cooler, like early morning or late in the evening.

With Austin growing fast and so many people moving from all over the nation, Thiel says making sure to ease into your workouts is very important, especially if you were used to cooler temperatures.

“What is great is acclimating to the heat when you are coming from different regions in the country and really getting yourself exposed over a period of time,” said Thiel. “Then, you are naturally going to progress.”

CrossFit Central’s event raised money for the Michael Murphy Foundation.

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