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5 Hero WODs for a Memorial Day Workout

Memorial Day happens this year on Monday, May 29th.  We seriously need to make sure the next generation knows Memorial Day is not just an extended weekend, a beach trip, or a backyard barbecue fest.  To military families all over the nation, the meaning of Memorial Days runs much deeper.  It is when we take one day to honor the brave men and women in the United States Military who have given their life in service.  

We need to make sure on Monday, we do a little more than just celebrate the victories with burgers and hot dogs.  

Take 1 hour on Memorial Day or during the weekend to do a workout aka WOD that is in memory of a fallen hero.  These men and women were trained soldiers and the things they had to endure lead to the sacrifice of their lives.  The very least we can do is keep their memory alive and earn our afternoon barbecue by getting in a WOD in their name.  

These workouts are more than just a WOD, it is a chance to push yourself, humble yourself, and dedicate a bit of pain and sweat to honor those who gave everything they had.

The “Murph” Hero WOD

1 Mile Run

100 Pull-ups

200 Push-ups

300 Squats

1 Mile Run

...with a 20lbs weighted vest or body armor

Michael P. Murphy

United States Navy (SEAL)

May 7, 1976 – June 28, 2005

Michael P. Murphy (SEAL) was the officer-in-charge of a four-man SEAL element in support of Operation Red Wings, tasked with finding a key anti-coalition militia commander near Asadabad, Afghanistan.  A fierce gun battle ensued on the steep face of the mountain between the SEALs and a much larger enemy force. While continuing to be fired upon, Murphy made contact with the SOF Quick Reaction Force at Bagram Air Base and requested assistance and continued to fight while the enemy forces were closing in.  He drew fire away, allowing one member of his team (Marcus Luttrell) to escape before Murphy was killed in action.

The Murph is considered one of the hardest WOD’s out there.  You can either do this WOD on your own or there is an official website with leaderboards that you can join and contribute to the LT. Michael P. Murphy Memorial Scholarship Foundation. (https://themurphchallenge.com/)


2 Rounds For Time

12 Burpees

12 Thrusters (115/75 lbs)

12 Burpees

12 Power Snatch (115/75 lbs)

12 Burpees

12 Push Jerks (115/75 lbs)

12 Burpees

12 Hang Squat Clean (115/75 lbs)

12 Burpees

12 Overhead Squat (115/75 lbs)

Sgt. Thomas R. MacPherson

United States Army Ranger (Sgt)

July 20, 1986 - October 12, 2012

Sgt. Thomas R. MacPherson, 26, was killed by enemy forces during a heavy firefight while conducting combat operations in Ghazni Province, Afghanistan. He was leading an assault against an enemy position when he was mortally wounded by small arms fire.  MacPherson was a team leader assigned to Company D, 2nd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. He previously served one deployment to Iraq and this was his fourth deployment to Afghanistan.

MacPherson has been added to the Army Ranger Lead The Way Fund and you can donate to their group here.  Donations go towards helping retired Army Rangers. (https://www.leadthewayfund.org/product/donate-in-honor-of-an-army-ranger/)



5 Rounds For Time

30 Kettlebell Swing (2 pood)

30 Burpees

30 Glute-ham (GHD) Sit-Ups

Staff Sgt. Daniel L. Hansen

United States Marines

August 20, 1984 - February 14, 2009

Staff Sgt. Daniel L. Hansen, or Tracy, California died while supporting combat operations in Farah province, Afghanistan.  Tasked with defusing a roadside bomb, Hansen was killed in action saving the lives of his brothers, Marine Wing Support Squadron 171, Marine Wing Support Group 17, Marine Corps Air Station.  He leaves behind family including his twin brother Matthew, also a Marine, and his fiance.

Hansen was added to the EOD Warrior Foundation, for more information visit his memorial site at http://www.eodwarriorfoundation.org/memorial/warrior/daniel-l-hansen

The “War Frank” Hero WOD

Three rounds for time of:

25 Muscle-ups

100 Squats

35 GHD situps

Captain Warren A. Frank

United States Marines

Mar. 4, 1982 - November 25, 2008

Captain Warren A. Frank, 26, of Cincinnati, Ohio, died while supporting combat operations in Ninewa province, Iraq. He was assigned to the 5th Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company, III Marine Expeditionary Force, Okinawa, Japan. He died while participating in a food distribution mission north of Baghdad.  His team came under small arms fire by an attacker in an Iraqi soldier’s uniform.


The “Badger” Hero WOD

3 rounds for time of:

95 pound Squat clean, 30 reps

30 Pull-ups

Run 800 meters

Navy Chief Petty Officer Mark Carter

United States Navy Seals

Died December 11, 2007

Carter was assigned to Tactical Development and Evaluation Squadron 2, Virginia Beach, Va.; died in Balad, Iraq, as a result of enemy action while conducting combat operations in Iraq.  The facts behind his death and earlier service in Afghanistan and Iraq are undisclosed due to the nature of his mission.  Like other special forces units, the SEALs keep a tight hold on their identities and the facts behind their missions.

Of course, there are hundreds of Hero WODs you can do, find one that you can get done and that pushes your out of your comfort zone.  We’ve added a Pinterest board with a collection of some of the most noted Hero WOD’s for a Memorial Day workout.  Click here.

Or you can even create your own if there is someone in your own family you are honoring this Memorial Day.  Create your own Hero WOD by including a challenging cardio set, upper body, and lower body set.  Put it in writing and have an accountability partner time your efforts to honor your fallen hero.  

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