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Gym-goers honor fallen soldiers with intense workout

Posted at 10:07 PM, May 31, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-01 00:38:38-04

LA VISTA, Neb. (KMTV) — Some may have been sleeping in this Memorial Day, with BBQs and boating planned for their afternoon. But at Edge Body Boot Camp, over 100 gym-goers were up bright and early, challenging themselves to complete the exhausting Memorial Day Murph.

The workout consists of a one-mile run, 100 pull-ups, 200 push-ups, 300 squats, followed by another one-mile run. Add on a 20-pound vest and the grueling workout definitely becomes a test of willpower.

“It makes one of those things where its a head down, do it, because you’re really realizing what you're doing it for," said Missy Henry, owner of the gym.

The workout is named in honor ofLt. Michael P. Murphy, a Navy SEAL who was killed in a firefight in Afghanistan in 2005. Through quick thinking and bravery, he was able to relay the position of his unit while facing an overwhelming attack, ultimately leading to the rescue of Marcus Luttrell, whose story was told in Lone Survivor, and the recovery of the remains of the three soldiers who died in the fight.

Adding to several other honors given throughout his time in the service, Murphy posthumously received the Medal of Honor and was only the third service member to earn that highest national honor since US. forces entered Afghanistan in 2001. He is also the first Navy recipient of the honor since the Vietnam War.

Those who remembered the man began sharing his favorite workout, and it quickly became a tradition in gyms across the United States.

“Body Armor was one of his favorite workouts, so it got renamed for him," Henry said. "And then it really just kind of caught fire where that particular hero workout just became synonymous with Memorial Day."

As they pushed themselves through the roughly 45-minute workout, the gym-goers remembered the sacrifices not only of Murphy but all others lost on the battlefield. Henry recalled her grandfather who served in the Korean War as she donned his medals on her weighted vest through the workout.

Others like Marine veteran Shawn Kellis said the memory of those who sacrificed pushed him to the finish line.

“That’s constantly going through my mind the whole time, when I start getting tired, just remember that there are people that aren’t able to do this today," Kellis said.

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