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NEWS | June 8, 2021

JBLE does the “Murph”

By Senior Airman Alexandra Singer 633rd Air Base Wing Public Affairs

Members of Joint Base Langley-Eustis took on the Murph Challenge at Shellbank Fitness Center, June 4, 2021. U.S. Navy SEAL Lt. Michael Patrick Murphy created the Murph workout to prepare for the physical demands of war.

In 2005, Murphy was killed in combat when he exposed himself to enemy fire to radio air support for his team. In recognition of his sacrifice, he became the first member of the United States Navy to receive the Medal of Honor since the Vietnam War. Service members across all branches continue to honor is heroism by taking part in the workout that now bears his name.

Participants completed the rigorous workout consisting of a one-mile run, 100 pull-ups, 200 push-ups, 300 squats and an additional one-mile run. Members could also opt to wear a weighted vest if they were up for an even more significant challenge.

“We have individuals who do these types of events for fun and others who compete to be the best,” said U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Sean Sirl, 633rd Force Support Squadron intramural sports director.

This event comes a month before the official return of physical fitness tests for U.S. Air Force Airmen in July, following an 18-month cancellation of testing due to COVID-19.

“Physical fitness is a standard to uphold and it is rewarding to have an event that can bring members [together] from across the base to compete against one another,” Sirl said.

The Murph Challenge motivates Airmen to work out and stay physically fit for duty.

“Due to the COVID guidelines, each squadron has had to adjust, [and] many members have not had the opportunity to truly focus on physical fitness,” Sirl said. “As a result, the 633rd FSS fitness team wants to bring as many fitness challenges as we can to boost morale in a competitive and fun setting.”

Although a challenge, the event was also a competition. The top male and female to complete the event earned trophies and medals were given to second and third place as well.

“I have friends that didn’t get to come back [from deployment],” said U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Edith Espinoza. “Every year I do the Murph to remember those that didn’t come home. My quads started hurting, I started to lose feeling in my legs, and I just kept thinking ‘Why am I doing this?’ I do it for them.”