Hunter McIntyre breaks ‘Murph Challenge’ record, raises money in Memorial Day tradition

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Hunter McIntyre, the professional athlete, television personality and fitness trainer, just broke a record Saturday for The Murph Challenge, the yearly Memorial Day tradition to honor a fallen warrior.

The Murph Challenge is a CrossFit workout consisting of a mile-long run, 100 pull-ups, 200 push-ups, 300 air squats and a final mile run — all while wearing a 20-pound vest or body armor.


Gunning for a sub-30 time, McIntyre did the grueling workout in 34:13 (Björgvin Karl Guðmundsson, unpartitioned, 38:40, the 2015 CrossFit Games. Mat Fraser, partitioned, 35:48, the 2016 CrossFit games. Josh Bridges, partitioned, 34:38, the 2016 CrossFit games.)

He told Fox News: “It’s known as the hardest workout in fitness. I wanted to be disciplined during the hard times we are facing and stay motivated and also motivate others to use this time to better themselves. Partnering with RWB was a huge opportunity to share the experience with the military community through the process.”

The challenge’s namesake is Lt. Michael Murphy. He was a native of Patchogue, N.Y., and a dedicated New York Rangers fan. He was also an athlete and star student from Penn State who turned down offers to attend law school to join the Navy SEALs instead, as Fox News previously reported.

He died in a 2005 firefight in Afghanistan that left three SEALs dead in all. He posthumously received the Medal of Honor — “for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life,” as the official citation read — and was spotlighted in the 2013 movie, “Lone Survivor.” He also was the first SEAL to have a ship named after him — the guided-missile destroyer Michael P Murphy, was commissioned in summer 2011.

McIntyre said: “Memorial Day is all about the veterans and I was never in the military but I do my best to spend the weekend with those who were.  I want to show my appreciation for their service and have a good time with them. This year was the best so far!”

The Murph Challenge has grown every year. It’s also served as a fundraising effort for the Lt. Michael P. Murphy Memorial Scholarship Foundation.

It’s an extra somber weekend in America.

Many men and women are among the untold number of veterans who served and survived during times of war only to die in recent weeks from the coronavirus.

This year’s Memorial Day will pay tribute not only to those who died on the battlefield but more recent fallen soldiers. And in a reminder of the way coronavirus has transformed American lives and traditions, many of the usual Memorial Day gatherings have been either canceled or curtailed — mindful of the pandemic that has already killed more than 90,000 people in the U.S.


In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, McIntyre said it’s imperative for men in America to be leaders.

“I think it’s important for us to stay positive, work hard while leading others to do the same. I told everyone I knew to train hard and complete Murph this weekend because it’s something all of us can accomplish from home. Everyone needs to do the same in their own communities, tough times need tough people.”

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