2022 Murph Training Plan

Murph is coming!  

Read the post and get ready for the biggest work out of the year in Rochester, MN. 

As a Progressionite, you love to hate Murph.  One of the longest Hero WODs and arguably the hardest.  If you have never participated in our Murph event, You should plan on it this year.  May 30th is the date.  Save it!  It is easily our biggest group workout of the year and probably the biggest group workout in Rochester, MN.  With up to 150 people completing the Work out in a 2-hour span of time.

Here is the workout:

I highly encourage you to read the story of Murph here: Lieutenant Murphy

You can also watch the movie “Lone Survivor” which tells the story.

Not sure what Murph is like at the gym?  Check out this video!  Here!

We do program some Murph prep in the weeks leading up to the event.  But if you want to excel, there is more you can do.  Participate in the Murph Prep challenge!  

Chris Hinshaw is a Reebok running expert and endurance coach to the CrossFit community. Here are a few of his tips.

Train for Volume

Most athletes need more than 40 minutes to complete Murph, and few show up prepared to work for that amount of time. “They underestimate the volume and the fatigue that will be created within that volume,” Hinshaw says. To get through Murph in one piece, you need to make sure your training addresses endurance, not just strength, and speed. “Your one-rep max is not going to help you in Murph,” he says.

Similar to how a runner trains for a marathon, you should prepare for Murph by practicing the individual movements, gradually increasing the number of reps so that your body becomes accustomed to longer periods of time under tension. In other words, the first time you attempt to do 300 air squats should not be this Memorial Day.

Use Rest Strategically

Facing reps in the triple digits is intimidating, even for experienced CrossFitters. Hinshaw initially incorporates generous rest periods to help build an athlete’s endurance and confidence. So, for example, he may have an athlete chip away at 100 pull-ups by doing sets of five followed by 30 seconds of rest. Even though his pace is slow, the athlete knows they can accomplish the total amount of work. Over time, Hinshaw slowly “squeezes out” rest by upping the number of reps per set, eliminating rest periods. Eventually, he’ll ask for sets of 10, then 15, and so on.

Plan for a Conservative Opening Mile

After underestimating Murph’s volume, running the initial mile too fast is the second most common mistake Hinshaw sees CrossFitters make. And, based on his own personal experience with Murph, he knows that it’s nearly impossible to recover from it. “I have a five-minute mile. I did it in six minutes, and I thought it was easy. My second mile took me eight minutes and 32 seconds. It was way too fast, and I suffered the whole way,” he says. “I wish someone told me that you can’t go out hot.”

Bottom line: Resist the urge to PR your first mile. Instead, use a pace that you could realistically sustain for a 10K race.

Make Sure the Vest Fits

If you plan to wear a weighted vest, a tight fit is crucial. In the past, Hinshaw has even resorted to using Goat Tape to adhere vests to athletes’ bodies. “If that vest doesn’t stay in a consistent location, it’s going to be incredibly uncomfortable,” he says. “It’s going to be a distraction, and it will ultimately cause you frustration that will lead to a bad experience.” Find a vest that feels like it’s a part of you during every movement.

Know Your Weakness

Murph is brutal on the body, but it’s just as tough on the brain. While building endurance is essential, self-awareness and mental fortitude is just as important. According to Hinshaw, this means knowing your weakness and at what point in the WOD it will begin to work against you. It’s not enough to simply “embrace the suck.” You need to understand and anticipate it.

“If you underestimate the amount of difficulty that you’ll be in at that particular moment, your brain is going to shut you down and start preserving energy because it’s afraid that you mismanaged your energy,” he says. “But if you assess the difficulty that you’re going to be in at that most difficult point, then yeah, you’ll still be suffering, but you’ll have a much better experience because you’re not surprised.”

Here is some additional Murph prep.

Run.  Every day you are at the gym.  Go for an extra 400m jog before and after class.  Not a big challenge?  Go 800m, still not enough run a mile!

We recommend that everyone do their first Murph partitioned, and we also recommend you do your 2nd, and 3rd and 4th Murph partitioned as well.  Ha!

Also, vests are for those who have completed Murph in under 40 mins without one.  If you plan on using a vest for Murph, start wearing it now.

As always we will have plenty of scaling options for Murph.  Anyone can participate in Murph.  This is also a great day to show off your REV fitness!


How to Attack?

Murph is one of the rare CrossFit WODs where you can choose the rep scheme that works best for your fitness type.  Knowing your weakness and planning your reps scheme based on that knowledge can save you a ton of time and help you finish this one faster than someone of similar fitness who does not plan well.  Here are some options.


The 5-10-15 scheme is probably the most common pattern people succeed with. This mirrors the rep scheme of the CrossFit benchmark workout Cindy:
20 rounds of
5 pull-ups
10 pushups (If you are new to Murph, be smart and shake out your arms after five reps, from the very beginning).
15 squats


If pushups are a particular challenge for you to consider the following scheme
20 rounds of
5 pushups
5 pull-ups
5 pushups
15 squats


If Push-ups and squats are going to be an issue, try this one.

Similar to the 5-5-5-15
20 rounds of
5 pull-ups
5 squats
5 pushups
10 squats
5 pushups

The time to start prepping is now!  Go in with a plan!

See you on Memorial Day!

Super secret Murph training plan link.  Click!

Joshua J. Grenell. Endurance Specialist
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