The sport of CrossFit has seen perhaps its greatest competitor hang up his training shoes. Mat Fraser announced on his Instagram account that he will no longer be competing. The caption of the post had one simple sentence. “Today I leave the sport older, wiser, fitter and grateful. #HWPO #FRA5ER”
He did go into greater detail in a series of images on the post that conveyed his longer farewell message.
“Like so many others that wandered into a CrossFit gym, I wasn’t expecting to find my best friends, business partners, wife, countless life lessons, and 5 gold medals. Today I leave the sport older, wiser, fitter, and grateful. I’m diving into the next chapter of my life with the same HWPO mentality. From now on, my decisions won’t be solely based on how they affect my performance, but how they affect my family, friends, heath, and happiness. I look forward to remaining a part of the CrossFit community, I just won’t be doing it from the competition floor any longer. HWPO
For those who aren’t familiar, HWPO stands for Hard Work Pays Off. That mentality is what led Fraser to becoming a legend in his sport. He also leaves as its reigning champion. His 2020 victory, which came in spite of many changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic, was his fifth in a row, surpassing Rich Froning’s four wins for the most of all-time. Even more impressive, Fraser never finished below the silver position on the podium in his seven years of competing at the top competition in CrossFit.
He is also a four-time winner of the CrossFit Open, the sport’s international online competition that serves as a kickoff to their competitive season. Among his other titles are the Rogue Invitational and the Strength in Depth UK event. His 29 wins are the most ever in CrossFit. His win total is identical to bodybuilding legend Dexter Jackson, who recently announced his retirement after competing in 2020.
There is currently no word on what the Vermont native’s current plans are in retirement. As for CrossFIt, this means that for the first time since 2015, there will be a new champion on the men’s side of the CrossFit Games. Ben Smith was the last man to win that contest before Fraser started his incredible run of five straight world titles.