Returning Champs Face New Competition at '18 Turkey Challenge

As Malachi Bennett made his way through the final reps of the 2017 MBS Turkey Challenge, there was a lack of drama that normally accompanies the final workout of a competition. Bennett had surged to such a commanding lead throughout the weekend - he could have sandbagged the final workout and still won.

 Malachi Bennett made quick work of the field in his first MBS Turkey Challenge, cruising to victory in 2017.

Malachi Bennett made quick work of the field in his first MBS Turkey Challenge, cruising to victory in 2017.

Trailing him on the leaderboard was eventual 2018 Games athlete Jared Enderton, who would finish third behind CrossFit Decimate’s Brian Harris. Both names missing from this year’s pro field. While Bennett seeks to repeat as champion in this year’s expanded Turkey Challenge, it won’t come as easy as it did in 2018. Earlier this year, two athletes from Norman, Oklahoma’s KODA CrossFit, made the move to Colorado. With 10 Regional appearances between them, Kevin Schuetz and Casey McCallister are poised to take a crack at Bennett’s crown. Bennett topped off his 2017 title with his first regional trip, finishing 16th in a stacked West Coast division.

 Kevin Schuetz poses the greatest threat to Bennett’s chances at repeating. He finished higher worldwide than Bennett in the 2018 Open, and has 6 Regional trips under his belt.

Kevin Schuetz poses the greatest threat to Bennett’s chances at repeating. He finished higher worldwide than Bennett in the 2018 Open, and has 6 Regional trips under his belt.

Schuetz, meanwhile, has six regional appearances to his credit, five of them as an individual qualifier. McCallister boasts another four trips to regionals, with two of those as an individual. Bennett finished the 2018 Open ranked 214th in the world. McCallister trailed Bennett at 560th worldwide, but Schuetz topped him at 166th in the world.

Without the appearance of these two athletes from Oklahoma, all eyes would have been on the head-to-head battle between former University of Wyoming football player and NorCo CrossFit (Now CrossFit 970) standout Cooper Wise. Wise made a regional run in 2017, finishing 13th in the South West, before making the move to Turkey Challenge host gym, MBS CrossFit in the Denver area. Wise and Bennett have never faced off head-to-head and despite the added names in this year’s field, Wise has a solid chance at battling for a podium spot.

 Casey McCallister joins his KODA teammate Schuetz on the competition floor this weekend, looking to dethrone returning champ Malachi Bennett.

Casey McCallister joins his KODA teammate Schuetz on the competition floor this weekend, looking to dethrone returning champ Malachi Bennett.

While Harris and Enderton are absent from this year’s competition, Enderton citing a long layoff following his first appearance at The Games earlier this year - last year’s 4th place finisher is back. Westy Guill, Bennett’s former training partner, was battling an injury during last year’s event - and while he is not 100%, he says he is in much better shape for this year’s competition.

Guill is no longer training with Bennett and has spent most of his preparation in 2018 as a garage athlete. He says he feels great going into this year - and gave much of his rehab credit to 2018 Turkey Challenge and CrossFit Games sponsor, Pure Spectrum CBD, which he has been using extensively since being exposed to the products this summer.

 Westy Guill enters the 2018 Turkey Challenge looking to improve on his 4th place finish in 2017. He’ll be flying the Pure Spectrum flag all weekend - citing the sponsor’s CBD products as one of the reasons for his comeback from an injury-riddled 2017.

Westy Guill enters the 2018 Turkey Challenge looking to improve on his 4th place finish in 2017. He’ll be flying the Pure Spectrum flag all weekend - citing the sponsor’s CBD products as one of the reasons for his comeback from an injury-riddled 2017.

Men’s Pro Podium

  1. Schuetz

  2. Bennett

  3. McCallister

Podium Contenders: Wise, Guill, Upshaw, Jax

Women’s Pro

 Elisa Schauer returns to the Turkey Challenge looking to repeat her title-winning performance from 2017. She’ll face Regional qualifier and fellow Coloradoan Stine Pinilla as well as Games Team Champ Kristin Reffett.

Elisa Schauer returns to the Turkey Challenge looking to repeat her title-winning performance from 2017. She’ll face Regional qualifier and fellow Coloradoan Stine Pinilla as well as Games Team Champ Kristin Reffett.

A newer face to the Colorado CrossFit scene, but a familiar one to fans, will also attempt to walk away from the Turkey Challenge with some hardware in the women’s Pro division - 5X Regional qualifier, 3X Games qualifier and 2X CrossFit Games Team Champ Kristin Reffett is back. Injuries and fatigue kept Reffett sidelined for the 2018 Games, but the athlete who helped Rich Froning win two affiliate titles at the Games, has to be looked at as a podium contender this weekend. Reffett will have to contend with CrossFit Evolve’s Stine Pinilla, who enters the Turkey Challenge after her second trip to Regionals as an individual this year. Pinilla will be challenged by returning champ Elisa Schauer. Schauer and Pinilla were razor close in the 2018 Open - with Pinilla holding a slight advantage, 524th in the world to 598th.

 Stine Pinilla looks to build off her impressive 2018 Regionals performance at this year’s Turkey Challenge.

Stine Pinilla looks to build off her impressive 2018 Regionals performance at this year’s Turkey Challenge.

Women’s Pro Podium

  1. Pinilla

  2. Schauer

  3. Reffett

Podium contenders: Van Dyne, Stone,

With a 60+ athlete roster for the Pros this year, as well as the expanded divisions we are seeing in 2018 - organizer and 6X Games athlete Pat Burke is working hard to show CrossFit that the Turkey Challenge has a foothold in the region, and would be a great addition to the list of qualifier events for the Games. A number of athletes referred to the event as “The New South Regional” because of all the changes with the formatting of the CrossFit Games. Looking at the field of competitors, it appears many in the region feel the same way. It remains to be seen if Pat Burke and the rest of those behind the Turkey Challenge, can expand the event, add an online qualifier and become a Granite Games or Wodapalooza type event.







Final Note from the Editor:

It is unfortunate that so many athletes in the Colorado area, choose to place a high level of importance on out-of-state competitions, when an event this size and with this quality of athletes, is taking place right in their backyard. For the Turkey Challenge to become a larger event on par with those I mentioned, the Denver CrossFit community and all those along the Front Range, needs to show their support in spades. We have an opportunity to put Denver on the map - to have an event like The Granite Games right here in Denver. Before you support others, support your own.








Challenged

chal·lenge

ˈCHalənj/

noun

  1. an objection or query as to the truth of something, often with an implicit demand for proof.

    "a challenge to the legality of the order"

    synonyms: test, questioning, dispute, stand, opposition, confrontation

The word challenge comes from the Old French chalenge which meant to accuse or dispute. Further back it stems from the Latin calumnia, meaning slander or false accusation. With these roots, it’s no wonder that the natural human reaction to being challenged is to become defensive. Despite this, saying you want to be challenged - whether you mean physically, emotionally, spiritually etc. has become a trendy phrase that flows off the tongue with such ease, that you may say or hear it often - but do you or anyone saying it, really want it? How will you react to it when your views, beliefs, or world view is challenged by someone? How will you react when your brother, your woman or your friend challenges you to be better, to change a behavior, or to defend your beliefs?

IMG_7208.jpg

We say we want to be challenged - but our behavior indicates otherwise. All we need to observe to see this pattern is social media. When someone challenges what you’ve written, do you react the way the majority does? I see people talk about being challenged all the time - but when I see those same people have their posts or beliefs challenged - the reaction is usually swift, defensive and visceral. I say this with such certainty...because I am as guilty of it as anyone else - perhaps even more so.

I have often said I want people in my life who challenge me to be better, to think about things differently, to see the world through a different lens. Then I look back at times when people in my life have done that - and my reaction has not always matched my words. Recently someone challenged something I posted - going so far as to call it “ignorant.” My immediate reaction in my head was very negative - and I was on the verge of lashing out at this person - instead, I called on something I had meditated about earlier in the week, about being more receptive to other’s opinions and acting kinder to those around me. I bit my tongue (literally) and I let this person finish what they were saying. Instead of going with my instant, and very emotional reaction - I gave myself time to process what this person said. The perhaps not so shocking result? A positive conversation that lead to more positive conversations. I may not change my mind about what I wrote. I may not see what I wrote in the same way they did - but I did walk away from the conversation with a deeper respect for this person and a deeper understanding of how they see the world based on their own experiences - the same as I have come to view the world based on mine.

IMG_7129.JPG

Next time you talk about wanting to be challenged - challenge yourself to be more open-minded. Being kind and receptive to others opinions is not a sign of weakness. Calling people names on the internet as a way to defend your stance, is. You show yourself as insecure and unable to defend your own beliefs- a rude, thoughtless toddler who understands only their emotions and whose actions are all based on the same. Running around social media using hilarious, hypocritical terms like “snowflake” (usually used by someone who freaked out when Nike cast someone they didn’t like in a new commercial, or who posts 18 times a day about whatever political story is causing them anxiety that day.)

My younger brother wrote a tremendous piece on the topic of being rude - it was an Instagram post from earlier this year.

“People who mistake being rude with being tough or some kind of badass - lacking manners and acting in a way that shows no respect or courtesy to those around you doesn’t make you look tough, it doesn’t make you a “savage”...it makes you an asshole.”

To read the entire post (and you should) check out @operationwerewolfofficial and find the post from August 17.

IMG_7698.PNG

One thing I have done in the last few months, is to try my best to simply be less rude, both on social media and in real life. I have a reputation as being sort of an asshole (I know a lot of people will more than likely laugh at my use of the term “sort of” here) and I know that I will always have a quicker tongue than a brain. I know that I will always say things that a lot of people may be thinking but might be too afraid to say. These traits do not have to mean that I am rude to people I know or to complete strangers. If your beliefs and worldview prevent you from being kind to other people - you might want to take a hard look at those beliefs - you might want to challenge yourself to look inside, to take an introspective look at why this is the case - or just do what you’ve always done and type “fuck you, you libtard snowflake” the second your opinion is challenged - and continue to live an unremarkable life filled with wasted time and missed opportunities.



The Best CBD Products for CrossFit (and how to use them)

If you CrossFit, it has been hard to avoid coming across CBD in your social media feeds since the Games. Athletes like Brooke Ence, Kara Saunders, Bethany Shadburn and more have been posting about using it, either for themselves, their pets or both. CBD is here and it appears to be here to stay. With all that exposure, the questions come every day - but the number one question I get from my CrossFit friends about CBD, is either, “how much do I take?” or “Which product should I use?”

I am an avid CrossFitter, I compete with some regularity, and I use CBD every day. I am not a doctor (which should immediately tell you, you should listen to me more, because only 13% of medical schools even teach about the endocannabinoid system, (Colorado University is one of them, I got you Dan Levy!)

First, let’s be clear: You can’t overdose on CBD. Overdosing on CBD would be, I guess, you took a lot and feel really relaxed? The horror!

But you also don’t want to be using an unnecessary amount, because good CBD is not cheap (If your CBD is what you would consider “cheap” it’s probably because it’s trash) So I am going to break down what I take, how much I take and when I take it. This has worked extremely well for myself and a good friend, as we both have come back from injuries that basically shelved us for almost a year. We are both now back to training and competing, pain-free.

I use Pure Spectrum products because I know the hemp is grown right here in Colorado, at the largest USDA certified Organic Hemp farm in the United States. Getting that label from the USDA is not easy - and it covers everything from their growing practices, to how they harvest the plants and make the product. Pure Spectrum is big on their “Seed to Sale” transparency. In an industry where hustlers are always looking to increase their profit margins and are increasingly looking to places like China to import cheap, polluted, low quality CBD - I like knowing what I am putting in my body, is pure, organic hemp. They also post third-party lab tests of their product on their website. In the health and fitness industry or the supplement industry, that’s pretty rare.

Brooke1.jpeg

So to make things easy for you guys, I broke down exactly what I take, when I take it and how much I take. I also have a list of my favorite products below, ranked in order of importance, to me. I hope this helps answer some of your questions.

Here is my daily CBD calendar:


Morning: Pure Spectrum 1250 Tincture (1 full dropper)

  • Honestly, if you only buy one product and only use it once a day, this is what you should have on deck.

Pre-workout: Pure Spectrum 99% Isolate powder (Ill just use a key to measure out my dose, cover the tip of your house key liberally. Figuring out white powder dose sizes on the tip of a key is a skill you may or may not already have :)))))

Afternoon/Post-workout: Pure Spectrum 1250. I refill old THC cartridges for my vape pen with the Pure Spectrum tincture. Lifehack. You’re welcome.

Evening: Pure Spectrum face and hand lotion. If it was a hard training day or I can just feel some soreness coming on, I’ll use the pain salve or muscle lotion topically as needed but I use the face and hand lotion every day.

 CrossFit Games athletes Brooke Ence and Logan Ewing (Center and Left) with Mile High CrossFit owner Bekka McCoy.

CrossFit Games athletes Brooke Ence and Logan Ewing (Center and Left) with Mile High CrossFit owner Bekka McCoy.

Bonus

The CrossFit “Hibernation” Dose:

This was something my good friend and training partner Westy Guill and I coined after playing around with dose sizes and different methods of ingesting CBD. Any day we train more than once, or get under heavy weight, this is the go-to. You will go directly to sleep and you will sleep like a tiny baby and awake feeling refreshed and ready to, as Brooke Ence says in the Pure Spectrum commercial, “do it all over again.”

Scoop the 99% isolate powder on to the end of a popsicle stick. Use enough to cover the entire curved end. Put the powder under your tongue, hold it there. While holding it under the tongue, take a full dropper of the 1250 tincture and squeeze it under your tongue as well. Hold both there for at least 60 seconds if possible. Enjoy - this has also been referred to as “The Hangover Dose” - so if you want, use it after hard training or hard drinking apparently.

Your shopping list:

I put these in order of importance to me personally. If I could only have one product it would be the 1250, if I could only have two, the 1250 and the powder, etc.

Pure Spectrum 1250 Hemp Oil Tincture
Pure Spectrum 99% Isolate Powder
Pure Spectrum Invigorating Pain Salve
Pure Spectrum Face and Hand Lotion

Pure Spectrum boasts an 80%+ customer retention rate, which is unheard of in most industries. This is because their products work. I have spoken with numerous people who told me they tried CBD a while back and did not notice any benefits. I always encourage them to give it one more chance and to use a reputable company like Pure Spectrum. Nearly all of them contact me a month later and can’t believe the difference. They were using ground beef and saying they didn’t like red meat - I got them to try some filet mignon, and their view changed.

 CrossFit Games athletes Logan Ewing and Brooke Ence flex-off during the Pure Spectrum CBD commercial shoot at MBS CrossFit. Both Games competitors trust Pure Spectrum for their recovery needs.

CrossFit Games athletes Logan Ewing and Brooke Ence flex-off during the Pure Spectrum CBD commercial shoot at MBS CrossFit. Both Games competitors trust Pure Spectrum for their recovery needs.

Follow any of the links in this story to check out Pure Spectrum’s full product line. Find out why Games athletes like Brooke Ence, Emily Bridgers, Dani Horan, Logan Ewing and many, many more, let Pure Spectrum be their advantage. wild/STRONG readers get 10% any order, just use the code: WILDSTRONG at checkout.

Local CrossFit Competition Programmers: Your Strength Events Suck

Local CrossFit competitions are not The CrossFit Games, and I understand that. What I will never understand, is where in the hell these folks come up with some of these complexes. If you are one of the programmers out there throwing one-reps in your comps - kudos to you. Go spread the gospel to some of these goofs elsewhere. -SW

 

Christian Hines of CrossFit Sua Sponte, Raleigh, NC - hitting a backflip celebration after hitting this smooth complex PR - oh wait, nobody celebrates like this after hitting a 12 rep PR.

Dear Sir/Madam,

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for all the time you spend every year putting on your annual CrossFit competition. You help thousands of athletes every year be able to experience the joys of competing, gain all the valuable knowledge about themselves that competing brings us - and most of us know how much work goes into these events. So again, thank you.

One thing I would like to ask you about, respectfully of course, because of how much time you spent on the event - what in the holy fuck were you thinking about when you programmed your “strength” event?

 Malachi Bennett during the 1rm snatch event at the 2017 Turkey Challenge at MBS CrossFit

Malachi Bennett during the 1rm snatch event at the 2017 Turkey Challenge at MBS CrossFit

I have competed in 37 CrossFit competitions. I’m sure there are thousands of people who would laugh at that number, while others may see it as large. What it is, is a number that shows you I have at least a decent amount of experience with local CrossFit competitions. I am by no means a great athlete or CrossFitter, just an older dad who likes to spend the occasional weekend exercising for time. I would say about 15 of those events, as well as another dozen I have attended over the years, featured what my friends and I now refer to as “Creative Strength Programming,”

 Brooke Austin celebrates a PR at the buzzer during the 2018 Wyoming Open at CrossFit Frontier. August 2018.

Brooke Austin celebrates a PR at the buzzer during the 2018 Wyoming Open at CrossFit Frontier. August 2018.

"Creative Strength Programming" is when you, the organizer or person in charge of programming the events, decides that what the people really want to see, and what the athletes really want to do, is a weird, confusing, high-rep complex, rather than a one rep max. One programmer who decided that instead of a one-rep max clean, he would make athletes perform an L-Sit for max time, then clean, but only two attempts, with a miss counting as zero, told me he would “never program a straight one-rep max” for his event. Cool, I’ll pass on coming to watch amazing athletes forced to play it safe and lift less weight. I’ll be across town at the comp with a 1rm snatch event - because it will be far more enjoyable to watch.

Two weekends ago, I attended a competition in Fort Collins, CO. The “strength” event was:

  • 1 hang power clean
  • 1 hang squat clean
  • 1 front squat
  • 2 shoulder to overheads

On it’s own that is a six-rep complex for a strength event. That’s cardio bruh. Nobody wants to watch strong athletes struggling to stand up 185 pounds. It’s fuckin' boring. Further more - this event wasn’t simply one time through - it was THREE TIMES THROUGH WITHOUT DROPPING THE BAR! Athletes were getting confused by the third round, skipping movements, with a few failing the final jerk at 175 pounds, after 17 reps - for a no rep. It was by the far the silliest event I have ever seen programmed at a local event - but it does not stand alone when it comes to the concept and thinking behind these events.

 Seth Waggener during the 1rm Snatch event at 2017 Tuff Love at CrossFit Sanitas. Photo: Scott Brayshaw.

Seth Waggener during the 1rm Snatch event at 2017 Tuff Love at CrossFit Sanitas. Photo: Scott Brayshaw.

There is a reason we don’t see these type of events at The Games. Mostly because they are boring - and people want to see big weight getting thrown up, PR celebrations. How many times have you watched someone stand up their 18 rep “silly fuckery” complex PR and the crowd went crazy? Yeah, me neither.

You want to test the athletes - you want to see them perform under stress, under fatigue - fine, do a ladder. Run a sprint event before the 1rm with a set remaining time to establish a 1rm like the Open does sometimes. Running strength events that are actually just cardio, doesn’t test across different domains. You are seeing endurance, ability to perform high reps - just skip the strength event and run another metcon if you are gonna throw 18 reps at someone. Hell, you are only 12 reps shy of Grace or Isabel.

Your “creativity” is harming your event, is not creative at all, is boring and in some cases, if it’s above 6 reps or so, potentially dangerous to the athletes.

Take pleasure in knowing you have one less event to program for your competition next year. Just throw a 1rm snatch, clean, clean and jerk, whatever - give the people what they want. We want to watch guys and girls clout chasing out there - not doing some high rep, low weight foolishness that would be better off left to crowd at Curves or Planet Fitness.

I look forward to attending your event next year, and screaming encouragement to all the athletes as they fight to stand up 1rm PR’s. Please note in your event announcement next year if you will be creatively programming your strength events, so I can plan to get a haircut or run errands that weekend - because either would be infinitely more entertaining than your competition.

Sincerely,

Seth Waggener

 

P.S. Hire a decent DJ. Your cousin’s playlist sucks, doesn’t have any lit bangers on it, and if I have to snatch for load to Evanescence one more time, I might go to his job at 24/7 Heating and Cooling and either smack him in the face or steal his phone and just download my playlist to it so we can throw some weight around to 6ix9ine.




 

Six-Time CrossFit Games Veteran Lauds CBD as Cure-All

The 2018 CrossFit Games will be remembered by Dani Horan as a week where one thing after another seemed to go wrong. It didn’t take the six-time Games veteran long to realize this was going to be a tough week - she had just gotten her period and as an athlete suffering from endometriosis, this in and of itself can be a struggle. Then she had a cyst rupture on the second lap of The Crit event on day one. Horan did what CrossFit fans have come to expect from the former gymnast and competitive equestrian jumper - she dug in and went to work - ultimately she finished 33rd, her worst finish at the Games. I met Dani when she came by the Pure Spectrum booth at the Games, then had the chance to meet her mother as well, when she came by on day three just to say thank you to the Pure Spectrum team. Dani and I were able to catch up last week to talk about her performance, CBD and her future in CrossFit.

When were you first introduced to CBD, was it at the Games or before?

I am always looking for natural cures and I had been reading about CBD for a while - but WADA didn’t allow it which I thought was crazy. Vermont has medicinal marijuana, and I had asked about getting a therapeutic exemption from CrossFit - but was told it would more than likely not be granted.

We have a large dispensary here in Vermont that sells CBD and as soon as WADA removed it from the banned list in January of this year, I started taking it. The biggest thing I noticed right away was the sleep. I normally would wake up four to five times a night - and it helped with that a lot. When I started taking Pure Spectrum’s products I really started to notice a difference not only in my sleep but my gut health and acne as well.

Since Midol is banned by WADA, I never had anything I could really take that would help with my cramps either - with Pure Spectrum’s topical and tincture, I was able to get rid of really bad cramps in about 40 minutes. This is the first product I have ever used that has worked for my periods.

That’s quite a laundry list of things you are using it for, with success. Do you see CBD as a product that will continue to gain traction with CrossFit athletes?

I see it as the new fish oil, apple cider vinegar - one thing you can take that fixes almost everything. One thing athletes need to be aware of though is there are a lot of crappy CBD products out there - the difference I saw using Pure Spectrum’s products tells me that the purity and potency matter.

I can see that, because of all the uses - but with it being produced from the cannabis plant - even though Pure Spectrum and other companies have a THC-free product - did you encounter any negative reaction from other athletes at the Games when you discussed CBD?

I got some weird looks from people, you know those looks like they are thinking “what are you doing, are you doing drugs?” - a few of those, some curiosity but there was also a lot of positive reaction and curiosity as well.

The 2018 Games. What’s the takeaway from your experience this year?

I haven’t really processed what happened this year. I had adrenal fatigue after the Games in 2017. I took four months off, just did some really basic conditioning during that time, took a huge off-season and just really focused on healing my body. I tried a new coach, it wasn’t a good fit. Three weeks before the Open I took over my own programming. I think I just started too late - I was able to get healthy and heal - but I just don’t think I had enough time to get ready. I had a rough go of it at the Games. Stabbing pain from the cyst rupturing didn’t help. The events this year were very different as well - there was not a lot of “CrossFit” events if that makes sense. I tried my best - but like I said, I’m still trying to process it all.

The recovery after a week of Games events has to be unreal - especially when things don’t go your way, or events are not in your wheelhouse. What was your experience afterwards, and did you use CBD to aid in that recovery?

I thought I was gonna be ungodly sore this year - I used CBD consistently - and while my muscles were certainly very fatigued, but the level or soreness was not nearly what it has been in the past.

The average age on the women’s podium this year is about 23. Is that something you think about when you are out on the competition floor trying to go head-to-head with these athletes as a 30 year old?

I’m definitely older in this sport. As an athlete I know I am in better shape than I was last year, but everyone is getting better every year and I’m not getting better as fast as I did when I was younger. I ask myself “was this just an off year?” The Games were really hard for me this year. Everything that could go wrong seemed to go wrong, but I just wasn’t good enough. I wasn’t in good enough shape.

So what does the future look like for Dani Horan. Will you be back in 2019? Is that even a goal for you?

I know that I want to compete this year - I am planning on competing this year - and I will just leave it at that for right now. Like I said, I am still trying to work through everything, so l’ll just say that - I plan on competing this year. One thing I can say is, that my goal for the future is to become more involved in the community. I know other people out there experience the things I experience - female athletes who suffer from terrible periods, adrenal fatigue, acne, gut issues, sleep, all of those things - I know they want a way to cure them. I want to spread the word about CBD - I want to help people through programming, nutrition, information - that is one of my goals regardless of my future as a competitor.