Watch Superhuman And CrossFit Games Athlete Rich Froning Crush An Off-Road Triathlon - Men's Health Magazine Australia

Watch Superhuman And CrossFit Games Athlete Rich Froning Crush An Off-Road Triathlon

Once again we find ourselves asking the question: Is there anything this man can’t do?

Rich Froning is a man of superhuman strength and fitness. As a four-time CrossFit Games champion – and by extension, a man crowned the ‘Fittest in History in back-to-back victories – Froning is well accustomed to the gruelling nature of physical pursuits that test the human body to its limits and involve a great amount of suffering. Now 33-years-old, you might have thought Froning would be kicking his feet up, perhaps granting his body the rest and idleness it deserves in the CrossFit off-season. Instead, Froning cast his eye on a new challenge: an off-road triathlon. 

The star athlete recently competed in the MOTUS Duck River Off-Road Triathlon in Cullman, Alabama, and said it was “one of the hardest things I’ve ever done”, which, given some of the challenges Froning has tackled in terms of his fitness pursuits, is saying something. Sharing some footage of the race in a new YouTube video, it’s safe to say that it does look particularly challenging. 

The video starts with a mountain biking session the day before the big race at Noccalula Falls, something Froning described as being his “new obsession”. With the stunning views and the kind of trails that don’t just test you physically but also mentally, it’s easy to see why something like this would captivate Froning. Still, even the fittest man on earth isn’t immune to a stack or two, as Froning revealed he fell twice “because I couldn’t get out of my clips.” 

Froning only manages to get five hours and 23 minutes of sleep, but race day arrives and the man is energised and alert. He and his team arrive at the race, which consists of a 500m open water swim, 18 mile mountain bike ride and 3.5 mile run. Despite not being a triathlete, Froning fools most viewers and is one of the first competitors out of the water. He quickly transitions to the bike and hits the trails, before transitioning once again for the run. Incredibly, Froning finishes in third place, even earning a spot on the podium with a final time of 2:43:14. 

“Full quad cramp. I had to stop and just start punching my quad,” explains Froning. “That was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.”

As for post-race fuelling, Froning sucks down a Cherry Coke and talks with other competitors. “I’ve never been happier to get third [place] in my life,” he admits. Taking stock of the stats on his WHOOP strap, Froning burned a staggering 2,714 calories and had an average heart rate of 169 bpm, with a max heart rate of 208 bpm. He also learned that he spent 36 minutes at 90 to 100 per cent of his maximum heart rate. Hopefully now that grants him a day off. 

By Jessica Campbell

Jess is a storyteller committed to sharing the human stories that lie at the heart of sport.

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