Emma Roberts

Crossfit Highlight: Hero WODs

If you are familiar with Crossfit, then you know that WOD stands for ‘workout of the day’. But whether or not you are familiar with Crossfit, you probably do not know the significance of a Hero WOD. A Hero WOD is a specific workout created to honor a fallen member of the military or first responder. These workouts are known for being especially challenging, and one of the most rigorous Hero WODs to exist is Murph, a grueling workout created to honor Michael Murphy, killed in action in Afghanistan in 2005.


1 mile run (20 lb. weighted vest)

100 pull-ups

200 push-ups

300 air squats

1 mile run

MODG student Thomas O-Brien has completed the hardest version of Murph twice–which is an incredible feat–and he shared some information with MODG News.

 1. Why is the Murph important to you?

The Murph is important to me, because just like every CrossFitter, you do special workouts every once in a while to track your progress, but also because it’s always good to find some way to commemorate what your soldiers have done for you. It’s just really important to me, because I do what I love, and at the same time, I am honoring our soldiers.

2.What was the experience like?

The experience wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. Of course, the Murph, just like any other hero workout, is really long and really tough, but both times (he says “both times” here because he’s done the Murph twice) I have done much better than I thought I would. So if anyone’s about to do the Murph, they should try not to sell themselves short, because they can probably do more than they think they can.

3. Did you do the workout Rx’d* both times, or did you scale?

The first time, I did not use a weight vest. The second time, I did wear a twenty pound weight vest, and I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to do the pull-ups and the push-ups, but I broke it up into twenty sets. It worked out pretty well, I finished in much less time than I thought I would. Just don’t kill yourself on the run.


*Rx is the hardest version, the one that is in the article. If you compete at R, you run half a mile and do half the reps for each movement.

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