Top Tips to Train for Murph this Memorial Day

Top Tips to Train for Murph this Memorial Day

4 minute read

Every year for Memorial Day, thousands of CrossFit athletes (including our owner Kelsey) participate in the Murph workout.
This is his story, and how you can be a part of it.


Lt. Michael P. Murphy was a Navy SEAL who was killed in the line of duty in 2005 in defense of his team while they were caught under heavy enemy fire. He loved CrossFit, and one of his favorite workouts consisted of the following:

1 Mile Run.
100 Pullups.
200 Pushups.
300 Squats.
1 Mile Run.
All in a 20 lb vest.

Shortly after his passing, the workout took on Lt. Murphy's namesake, and has been one of the toughest challenges as well as a humble reminder ever since.

Now that you know who and what Murph is, participating in it may seem daunting even if you're a regular in the gym. But of course, Lilac Market's got you covered (as usual). Here's some workout tips and ways to scale at home that will get you in the right head space to join in on this amazing event.

Actual photo of Kelsey finishing Murph in 2020


Set yourself up for success by treating Murph like a marathon: preparing properly. With Memorial Day 13 days away, you can start light training if you're a beginner or add the moves to your regimen if you're a seasoned vet (but you can do Murph any time!). Stretching out those tight spots on a regular basis will get things loose to prevent injury. Hydration and sleep massively affect workouts, so make sure you're getting plenty of both in the days leading up to Murph. If you struggle with a fear of failure, keep in mind that Murph is intended to remind you of the cost those soldiers paid, and the difficulty is intense for even athletic pros. Give it your all, and you've given enough.

Scale Strategy

There are lots of methods out there, but the most successful Murph tip to accomplish it at home is scaling! Scaling the workout makes it much more accessible depending on your abilities. You can scale volume (the amount of reps you do), movements (walking, rowing or biking instead of running), and partition reps (shown below). You can get creative by using bands or even soup cans. Can't do pullup? Instead try bent over rows holding a gallon of milk! Whatever looks like the motion and adds weight safely can do the trick.

Here is one scaled version of Murph that you could easily do at home:

Scaled Murph at home:

Walk 1 mile

100 bent over rows with a gallon of milk

200 knee or box pushups

300 air squats

Walk 1 mile

Below is one of the most popular ways to partition the workout so you can avoid burnout:

Partitioning Murph with 20 rounds of:

5 pullups

10 pushups

15 air squats

You also don't have to use weights - body weight works just fine. Make sure as you train you are keeping track of your rounds. A good way we have found to do so is making tally marks on your arm with a sharpie, or you can even use your headbands to help by tossing a headband into a basket after completing each round!

Remember Your Why

This workout is considered one of the hardest in CrossFit, and it can feel easy to consider tapping out. Focusing on the reason why you're doing it in the first place will help in the times you'll want to quit (and trust us, you will). Whether it's completing all the reps or beating your own time, here's the main reason why Murph is so special - not only is it in honor of Lt. Murphy himself, but the Navy SEAL creed for which he gave his life:

"If knocked down, I will get back up, every time."

Finally, as tribute to Lt. Murphy and his sacrifice, we're honored to release the unique print "Murph" for our Honor the Fallen Collection.


If you would like to learn more about The Murph Challenge and the man behind the mission, go to The Murph Challenge to read Lt. Murphy's full story and more about the Murphy Foundation. 




In honor of Lt. Michael Murphy, this print was designed with the MURPH CrossFit workout in mind. You can learn more about Lt. Murphy's story here. You should expect your headband to give you confidence without sacrificing function. Lilac Market Headbands… Read More

Murph (Men's)

Murph (Men's)


In honor of Lt. Michael Murphy, this print was designed with the MURPH CrossFit workout in mind. You can learn more about Lt. Murphy's story here. You should expect your headband to work as hard as you do. Lilac Market Headbands… Read More


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