Mat Fraser: 5-Time CrossFit Games Champion & Author of HWPO: Hard Work Pays Off

Jan 05, 2022, 11:00 AM

The CrossFit lifestyle – that’s the ultimate description of this week’s incredible guest - Mat Fraser. Mat is the first athlete in history to have won five consecutive CrossFit Games titles. He is an amazing specimen of an ultra-fit man. What a never-quit story he has to tell – suffering two breaks in his L5 vertebra and still competing in the Junior World Weightlifting Championship in Bucharest, Romania. That injury required him to wear a plastic brace on his torso for four months, but it failed to heal properly. Instead of spinal fusion surgery which would have certainly ended his athletic career, Mat elected instead for experimental surgery to have his back re-broken, inserting a protein sponge to help heal the bone with two plates and six screws attached to his lower spine. The silver lining in this seemingly insurmountable circumstance was finding CrossFit, which helped him achieve different, yet impressive athletic goals.

In this episode you will hear:

• I’m gonna learn what I don’t know, I’ll fuckin’ hammer it till I’m great at it.

• There’s no road trip too long if you have a fun person in the car.

• I wasn’t the most naturally gifted athlete. I always had incredible body coordination. I was always the strong one in the group.

• Anytime there was something I wasn’t proficient in, I would seek out a professional, seek advice – show me how to do this.

• If your outcome is determined by one person that isn’t as dedicated as much as you, it fucks up everyone’s effort.

• Absolute max effort today allows me to train tomorrow & the next day.

• My mom is 66, and she goes to CrossFit every morning.

• [Markus] “Every morning you get down to do 1 pushup – eventually, you’ll do 2.”

• Not every time I drank I got in trouble, but every time I got in trouble, I had been drinking.

• When I told my coach I hurt my back, he said “there’s a difference between pain and injury.” He assumed I was just young and being a pussy.

• Thank God I hurt my back because I would’ve never found CrossFit.

• When I was broken & hopeless, I remember thinking, “What good is gonna come of this?”

• If you can’t explain it to a six-year-old, you don’t know it well enough.

• I’m a good coach because I didn’t pick up on things naturally.

• How you do anything is how you do everything.

• The most valuable thing is learning how to learn.