CrossFit gym opens early for Memorial Day workout honoring fallen heroes

Local News

CENTERVILLE, Ohio (WDTN) – A CrossFit gym in Centerville reopened Monday, one of the first gyms in the Miami Valley to do so. The owner of CrossFit 937 said it was extremely important they did it in time for Memorial Day.

Every Memorial Day, CrossFit gyms honor our fallen heroes with an intense workout called the “Murph.” It’s a tradition that CrossFit 937 owner, Mike Burnett, said they couldn’t let COVID-19 stop.

CrossFit 937 opened back up after an Ohio judge ruled gyms could reopen ahead of Governor Mike DeWine’s order if they followed proper safety guidelines.

“It’s pretty brutal but it’s so much fun to be back in the gym and back with everyone that we’ve been doing it with and just be sweaty in a gym again,” said Kayla Stephensen.

Burnett said the reopen date was not coincidental. He said they haven’t missed a Memorial Day or a “Murph” since they opened seven years ago.

“We made sure that we did everything we could planning-wise to make sure that everybody was safe, that all procedures were met and then from there, we knew we were absolutely still going to host it,” said Burnett. “It was really well received, really neat to see how many people actually wanted to go and partake in this because of what it means.”

The “Murph” is a nationwide Memorial Day CrossFit workout in honor of Lt. Michael Murphy who passed away in Afghanistan in 2005, but it’s dedicated to all who have given the ultimate sacrifice.

“It starts off with a mile run, 100 pull ups, 200 push ups, 300 air squats, then another mile run,” said Burnett. “As everyone was sweating, and huffing and puffing, they were still pushing themselves as hard as they could knowing what this was in honor for.”

Lance Weston said this year was his first “Murph,” and said it was pretty rough.

“I didn’t get to finish the run because I ended up throwing up because I went a little too hard,” said Weston.

But he said the sweat and suffering had special meaning.

“It’s especially important to me considering I was in Air Force ROTC, I’m going into the Air Force Academy,” said Weston. “Being able to do that in a way that dedicates some effort to them is something I’m always up for and willing to do.”

Burnett said starting Tuesday, May 26, they will be back to normal class times.

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