Along with many others around the country, I completed “Murph” yesterday!  I did this workout last year before I got pregnant (my time was MUCH slower yesterday) so it was fun to see what it would feel like at six weeks postpartum.  If you’re not familiar with this particular Crossfit WOD, “Murph” is so named after Navy Lieutenant Michael Murphy who was killed in Afghanistan 9 years ago.  This workout was one of Lieutenant Murphy’s favorites and he had named it “Body Armor,” but, in his remembrance, it’s now referred to as “Murph.”


[source]  (I can’t imagine doing this with a weight vest on!)

After fueling up with some protein pancakes and coffee, I made sure to nurse Porter so I wasn’t as “full” for the running part (I also doubled up my sports bras.  This running and nursing thing…It’s some serious business).  While I was nursing, Travis hopped in the car and clocked an out-and-back mile for me (that guy…).  Unfortunately we live at the top of a hill so no matter which direction you run, coming back is ALWAYS a struggle.




The first mile was fairly easy considering the running shape that I’m in. I clocked it at 7:58.

Next up, PULL-UPS!

Early yesterday morning, I asked Tina the best way to modify the pull-ups and she agreed that “jumping pull-ups” would be the next step down from bands (which I don’t have).  For about 20 out of 100 reps, I was able to do strict pull-ups but then within each set, I had to modify with the jump and more of a chin up-type form.  This modification was still challenging but not too bad.






I’d read a good suggestion online to divide the work up into sets of 10-20-30 (pull-ups, push-ups, air squats), but Tina said the pushups would trash my arms and suggested a 10-10-30-10 approach.  I was able to save a little juice in my arms by creating a push-up/squat/push-up sandwich.  (Mmmmm..sandwich.)  I think the strategy worked well!


The first 10 out of every set I completed with strict form.


The remaining 10 (after the air squat “break”) I needed to modify down to my knees.  Not one bit sad about that – 200 push-ups is a lot!



The last piece:  AIR SQUATS!



I found these to be fairly easy but 300 was plenty for the day. Winking smile

I kept a tally of all the sets on our whiteboard and before I knew it, it was time for that last mile.


Whoa!!  SOOO thankful for the downhill start!  I finished this mile in 8:48, slower than the first but I was still pleased.



I completed my first postpartum “Murph” in 42:52.


I’ll take it!!

At six weeks postpartum, I’m not yet in a place physically or mentally to start setting huge fitness goals. I honestly don’t have the desire.  But I love doing these types of workouts because now I have a baseline to work off of.  I just want to get faster and stronger…to beat MY times/reps/sets.  That’s why I loved running cross country – it’s you against you.  I’ll probably try “Murph” again in a couple of months.  And now I have something to work towards: less modifications and a faster 2nd mile time.


Post-workout “ice bath”


QUESTION:  Have you ever completed “Murph”?  Who else is working out in their basement right now?


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  1. Murph is brutal. Congratulations. I work out in the garage, we don’t have basements here in central Texas =( That sucks this time of year as it is getting pretty hot in the garage and it’s not even June yet!

  2. aaaaaaaa-mazing! i need to be working out in my basement. i have been managing one 1-mile walk a day… i feel like when william is sleeping i have other things i need to be doing – sometimes i can get in a set of lunges or so…. on that thought, i’m gonna do that right now!

  3. I did Murph last summer in 38:42 with jumping pull-ups (from plates to a very high bar). I can’t wait to do it again now that I can do more kipping and strict pull-ups.

    I partitioned it like this: 20 rounds of 5 pull-ups, 10 push-ups, and 15 pull-ups.

    10 pull-ups is a lot in a row and otherwise I would’ve ended up taking more breaks. Just an idea if you are trying for a faster time.

    We did a hero wod named for Danny Dietz, one of the other member of the Seal team who was from Littleton yesterday at our box, I think because Murph is a little hard to do with so many people on a holiday in our space.

  4. You rock! That’s an awesome time no matter what – nevermind the fact that you just had a baby! I am 30 wks along and I did a 1/4 Murph yesterday. I didn’t have to modify any movements, which was awesome, but I was definitely glad that I only did 1/4 of the reps!

  5. We don’t have a basement, so I’m wondering what it’d be like to complete it on the beach (run, push ups, squats).

    Incidentally my favorite workout to watch is the one where my ex-Special Forces hub does push ups with our daughter on his back. Usually he sings in Afrikaans to her during that time, but other times it’s toddler-friendly cadence.

  6. Fantastic! I have a random question, because I am super jealous of your garage set-up. What kind of set up do you have there for your pullups? It looks like a small-enough, but very effective rack. I am researching to purchase one very similar, but having a hard time finding one.

    1. It’s a Marcy Platinum 10 Power Rack. I watched craigslist for a couple months after we bought our house looking for a power rack and that’s the best I could find for cheap.

  7. Murph is not only one of my favorite workouts but it is also one of my favorite stories. He truly was just an exceptional human being …. as a Seal and as a man. There’s a book out about him and then obviously Lone Survivor but both are an incredible look inside.