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The countdown is on-One month until Murph!

Der Countdown läuft-One month until Murph!

Hannes Beyer |


The Murph workout has been one of the pillars of your boxing competition ever since functional fitness existed. Even if it doesn't look like a lot of effort at first glance: It will push you to your limits. What started as an idea has now grown into a large industry and is celebrated globally. Every training level and every age group participates, making the Murph Challenge one of the most important benchmark workouts in military fitness and functional sports. We at wodstore tell you a few tricks that you can use in your preparation. We also shed light on where the Murph Workout actually came from and for what purpose it was created. If that's not enough for you: We'll also show you how the challenge can positively influence the rest of your training.

What is a benchmark workout?


Functional fitness is about two, maybe three essential things: The measurability of your movements, your speed and your strength. The strongest athlete falls by the wayside if their stamina is not enough. The trainee with excellent cardio may be terrified of heavy loads. Finally, there is the athlete, who embodies a mixture of both. His mistake? He does not follow the prescribed movement pattern, for example does not stretch his knees or hips far enough. So he loses valuable points and has to work more than he should move with a cleaner execution. So you see, no matter what their insular ability, an imbalanced athlete will always have trouble with functional training.

Consistency is key!

Benchmark workouts were created in order to be able to track how your sporting success manifests itself over the long term. They are repeated at irregular intervals in each program within a box. Benchmark workouts are expressed as having a set number of repetitions or a time limit. This allows you to relate your workload to your most recent attempts. Murph is ideal because the movements themselves are not complex and the number of repetitions can theoretically be divided up as desired.

What is the Murph Workout?

The Murph wokout consists of the following components: two runs, pull-ups, push-ups and air squats. The division is up to you, but the regular process is as follows: You start the workout with a one-mile run (equivalent to 1.6 kilometers). This is followed by 100 pull-ups. Then you do 200 push-ups, then 300 air squats. When you think you've given it your all, a run of another 1.6 kilometers awaits you at the end.

The background: Murph as a hero workout

Murph isn't just a benchmark workout, it's also a hero workout. Confused by the different terms? No problem! As mentioned, a benchmark workout is there to measure your progress using uniform standards. A hero WOD, on the other hand, has more emotional reasons. They are each intended to commemorate someone or to honor someone. Last but not least, functional fitness was born out of the idea of ​​preparing physically very active people for their demanding job context; i.e. military, fire brigade and police. Hero WODs commemorate people who lost their lives during their mission. The Murph workout is named after Michael P. Murphy , who came up with this workout while serving in Afghanistan. At that time it was still called "Body Armor". To keep it short: Murphy died while serving in 2005, but made a lasting impression with his bravery during his service, causing his Body Armor Program to be renamed Murph and commemorated since his death.

How to attack Murph: What to look out for

Before you pull off a Murph, make sure you have a battle plan or your body will fail. Please pay attention to two things:

1. How strong do you think your individual muscle groups are?
Due to the mass of air squats and the runs at the beginning and end, your legs are under constant tension. It can also be difficult to do 100 pull-ups without losing your grip completely.

2. Which pacing is feasible?
As we've already explained, you can split your "Murph Unit" into any number of small pieces. You should work in such a way that you are exhausted but never burned out. For beginners, for example, a division that provides 5 pull-ups, 10 push-ups and 15 air squats as one round is recommended. This keeps you moving without overstimulating any muscles, which will cost you energy in the second half of your workout at the latest.

By the way, there is no shame in not doing this workout RX, i.e. with a given number of repetitions. If you're just getting started with functional training, half a murph might be enough to finish you off. Your limits want to be tested, but not permanently pushed to the limit.

Apart from that, you can expect that all of your auxiliary muscles, i.e. grip strength, core stability and ankles, have a lot of work to do.

Even harder? Try the vest!

Lt. Murphy was a soldier. That means he wore a bulletproof vest day in and day out. An RX Murph, as it was actually conceived, provides the workout of runs, pull-ups, push-ups and squats permanently with a weight vest. Not only does it add weight, it also hampers your mobility and breathing. After a Murph with a vest you know for sure how heavy a few extra kilos can get in the long run!

The wodstore can help

Still looking for a vest for Murph? No problem! The Picsil plate carrier is easy to carry thanks to high-quality nylon fabric, easy to put on thanks to magnetic strips and easy to load thanks to Velcro fasteners. Longevity in a nutshell!

Murph Prep: Inspiration for your hero workout

Below are two key elements that will help you with Murph:

  1. More endurance - more success! You should (especially if you are doing the Hero Workout with a vest) have already done all the exercises with her on your shoulders. That way you won't be held up by an unfamiliar feeling. At the same time, compound exercises like hollow rocks, farmers carries, or deadlifts help improve your posture under heavy weight. Hollow rocks and farmers carries with kettlebells also have the advantage that they prepare you well for the pull-ups through grip strength and hip movement.
  1. Short intervals with many changes
    Keeping moving is one of the most difficult parts of a long workout. So it makes sense to try out the bodyweight movements as tabata or EMOM (every minute on the minute). This allows you to estimate a training rhythm on the key date that doesn't burn you out in the first few minutes!

what does it look like Dare you Murph? Let us know in the comments

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