The story of Hugo

When naming CrossFit workouts after girls, CrossFit founder Greg Glassman said it best.
“I want to explain the workout once and then give it a name. I thought that anything that left you flat on your back, looking up at the sky asking ‘what just happened to me?’ deserved a female’s name. Workouts are just like storms, they wreak havoc on towns.”

A similar ideology was used in March of 2009 when No Excuses CrossFit was just a few months old. It was time to come up with a birthday WOD for then-owner Kyle Maynard and the coaches wanted it to be something special, something that left you feeling like you were wrecked by a hurricane.

“We knew a lot of the girl WODs were named after Hurricanes, so we wanted our own,” Kyle said.

While Hugo isn’t a female’s name, it was the name of a 1989 hurricane that hit the Carolina coast. That’s the name given to this grueling workout:

5 RFT:
400m run
21 pull ups
21 KBS
21 box jumps

Since then, the ‘Hugo’ WOD has become a No Excuses CrossFit staple and has been turned into a team WOD at previous events. In fact, you may have noticed that we also use the Hugo name as the title for the No Excuses CrossFit annual in-house competition, the Hugo Open.

The character in the No Excuses CrossFit logo (the X is a person) is named Hugo, and it’s a rendering of Kyle from the attached photo. The photo is from Palm Springs, California, on Kyle’s first mountain summiting trip, before he ever went on to climb Mount Kilimanjaro.

In many ways, Hugo has become the mascot for No Excuses, and we hope that sharing the origin of the name and symbol helps tie our current No Excuses membership to the awesome legacy of our gym’s past!