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Feb 13, 2019

Mathew Fraser (@mathewfras) is an American professional CrossFit Athlete. With a coined mantra of “Hard Work Pays Off” (HWPO), he has been a dominant force on the CrossFit Games stage since the beginning of his career defining a legacy in the sport. In 2014, his debut year at the CrossFit Games, he claimed 2nd place atop the podium and was awarded Rookie of the Year. In 2015, as the favorite to win, he claimed 2nd place again. Fraser recalls this 2015 moment not as a “win for 2nd” but a “loss for 1st”.

In 2016, Fraser hit the competition floor and took 1st place, it was the first historic victory of his career, winning by the largest margin of victory in Games History. In 2017 and 2018 Fraser repeated not only his overall finish but each year has bested his own set record for winning by the larger margin of victory in Games History. In 2016 he led by 197 points, in 2017 he led by 216 points and in 2018 he led by 220 points. Fraser holds accolades in competitive sport before his time as reigning and defending Champ in CrossFit. He is a 3x Junior National Champion Olympic Weightlifter and a former U.S. Olympic Weightlifting team hopeful. In 2008- 2009 he was a resident Athlete at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, CO. With a return from major back surgery in 2011, he retired from his weightlifting career and has been a CrossFit athlete since 2012.


In this episode of Barbell Shrugged, we talk to Mat about the USO tour, what happens when you cut corners in training, the real reason Mat moved to Cookeville, the power of surrounding yourself with a great team, and much more.



- Anders and Doug


Episode Breakdown:

⚡️0-10: Comedy shows, the USO Tour, and doing Fran with the troops

⚡️11-20: Flying on Air Force Two, trying to shoot guns with special force troops, and why a lot of bases don’t have Crossfit style gyms

⚡️21-30: What happens when you cut corners in training and the real reason Mat moved to Cookeville

⚡️31-40: Why the best athletes work with Hinshaw and the power of surrounding yourself with great people

⚡️ 41-50: No one cares how many friends you have, what Mat would be doing if Crossfit wasn’t around, and why it’s important to always perform at your potential

⚡️51-60: The olympic training center and Mat’s experience of breaking his L5 in two places

⚡️61-70: Mat’s injury history, Mat’s thoughts on the new Crossfit format, and the lasting impact of the legends in Crossfit

⚡️71-80: Trash talking and why competitive Crossfitters can be friends (most of the time)

⚡️81-93: The most abs Mat has ever seen in once place and his training journal



Show notes at:


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Shrugged Collective is a network of fitness, health and performance shows that help people achieve their physical and mental health goals.  Usually in the gym, but outside as well. In 2012 they posted their first Barbell Shrugged podcast and have been putting out weekly free videos and podcasts ever since.

Along the way we've created successful online coaching programs including The Shrugged Strength Challenge, The Muscle Gain Challenge, FLIGHT, Barbell Shredded, and Barbell Bikini.

We're also dedicated to helping affiliate gym owners grow their businesses and better serve their members by providing owners tools and resources like the Barbell Business Podcast.

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