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The Quest for 100 Pull-ups by Chris Spealler - CrossFit Journal

The Quest for 100 Pull-ups

By Chris Spealler

In Athletes, Exercises, Videos

July 08, 2009

Video Article

Chris Spealler got 100 consecutive pull-ups on his first attempt on video with Sevan Matossian and Carey Peterson. Or so he thought.

No one counted for Chris, and when they reviewed the tape, he had only done 99.

Ten days later, at the CrossFit Level 1 Trainer Summit, Chris tried again. His hands ripped so bad, the dripping blood became too slippery and he fell off the bar at 97 reps.

He tried again about two weeks later with his hands taped, but the tape got slippery, and he only got 93. Finally, about ten days after that, he flew through it and recorded 106 straight pull-ups.

This is not just the story of Chris’s quest for 100 pull-ups. It’s also the impact Chris has on his friends, family, peers, and the broader CrossFit community.

There is a short (4min) video of just the final attempt ... [wmv] [mov]

Full version: 22min 17sec

Free Download


50 Comments on “The Quest for 100 Pull-ups”


wrote …

Mental toughness and relentless determination personified, truly inspiring


wrote …

Chris - That was truly inspiring. Not just in the feat itself but in your determination to continue to re-attempt and not be discouraged. Many athletes have all the skill and ability but it seems that you have "the top four inches". What incredible mental strength.


Ps. I was told you listen to a lot of books-on-tape on your infamous headphones. Is that true?


wrote …

Wow, he makes all old wrestlers proud.


wrote …

What an awesome and inspiring video. When I grow up I wanna be like Speal.


wrote …

His hands looked so bad after that 2nd attempt. That must've hurt in the shower.


wrote …

Amazing, absolutely inspiring. I want to train with you!


Katrina Burton wrote …

I'd like to add all the wonderful words everyone said in the video... You are the most generous and approachable person I have ever met in any sport. I will always remember my Level 1 cert for what you trainers made it and taught me. Congratulations on your achievement! I found myself in tears after your attempt at the trainer seminar, not because you didn't quite make it but because your movement was so beautiful and inspiring to watch. To see the kinds of athletes Coach Glassman has produced in the short time CrossFit has be out there is truely amazing. Keep in touch and training hard and I hope to run into you again in our future travels!


PS - if you took a picture of your hands don't allow it to be posted on the website... you'll get eaten alive with critism :)


wrote …

I wish the gym were open right now so I could go try for a pullup PR.

Awesome job - good luck at the Games


EC S wrote …

chris! you rock, brother. congratulations! and good luck at the games!


wrote …

Wow... Speechless... Rooting for you at the games.


wrote …

Unreal! That was inspiring. He personifies what a class act is all about. Well done!!!


wrote …

I love seeing Crossfitters blast past the boundries :-)

What a super cool & awesome dude too!

Congratulations Chris and God bless :-)


wrote …

Amazing work! Chris you are a truly inspiring athlete. Keep up the good work you are pushing the limits and breaking new ground.

Take care of them paws and good luck at the games.


wrote …

that was so exciting!

what were the unplugged headphones for?


wrote …

seems like every person that talked about you mentioned the same words humble and a good athlete, which just makes me want to meet you even more. keep up the good work and keep on breaking the records


wrote …

I don't usually leave comments, but damn, I can't believe I just saw that, it looked to easy, why not 150, great job Chris, I gotta get in the gym asap


wrote …

whole lot of "never quit," in this video.
Speal is bad ass.

...Nicole Carroll is so cool ♥.


wrote …



wrote …

What an inspirational video! I felt it my duty to go PR on pull-ups after watching it.

Best of luck at the games, Chris.


wrote …

Congratulations on an amazing milestone personally and for the community! Thank you Chris for being such an inspiration to so many, in so many varied ways.

(I was almost more in awe of how lackadaisical you were about your GNARLY hands. I recoiled from the screen. No wonder the relative pain of workouts is nothing to you with mental vigor like that!)

Best of luck in the games, and whatever new goals and feats you'll bless us with!


wrote …

Unbelievable....amazing....astonishing...inspiring....moving... You are such a great athlete Chris!
Good luck at the games!


Ross Gilling wrote …

Unbelievable Chris! You are a MANIMAL!!!!! An inspirational performance both physically and mentally.

Congratulations, and good luck for the games...


wrote …

Very impressive, kill it at the games.



wrote …


Superman doesn't seem so special now, does he? I'd like to see Superman do 106 Pull-Ups. In a row. Every 10 days. Before the games. IN ONE SET.


Brad Cogburn wrote …

Strong work, That is just bad ass. Nothing else to say! I wish you luck at the games.


wrote …

Definitely inspirational and great heart..


wrote …

Amazing! Best of luck to Speal and all the competitors this year.


William Davidson wrote …

You are one of my crossfit heroes. I went from 0 to 3 to 5 pullups in two weeks, and I couldn't have done it without seeing examples of such incredible human achievement.

What does that tattoo on his chest say? Is it the secret to his power?


wrote …

I love this community.

I read the intro, so I knew what was going to happen on each attempt in the vid, but I was still on the edge of my seat. Even just the video was an emotionally powerful experience.

Congratulations, Spealler! I'm excited to see how you do at the games - best of luck!


wrote …

Great Speal-umentary! Truly inspiring story and accomplishment and not surprising that he would be the first to do something of this caliber. Congrats! Look forward to watching him at the Games.


wrote …

Wow. Wanted to cheer sitting behind my desk. Best of luck at the Games to you!


wrote …

Thanks so much for all the kind words to everyone. There are some awesome people in this community and it's so cool to be a part of it!


wrote …

thats f'ing amazing..good luck at the games!


wrote …

thats f'ing amazing..good luck at the games!


wrote …

Failure cannot tolerate perserverance. Great heart & best of luck for the Games!


Russell Benedetto wrote …

Chris I miss you bro and someone should have counted I know you could have done the last one YOU ARE A TRUE FIREBREATHER


wrote …

There was close up for a couple secs in Every Second Counts dvd and I think it quotes Romans 1:16, I am not ashamed... If I'm right, then it's very cool!!


wrote …

That would fit with the music I've heard he prefers. That's Power on another level.


wrote …

Congratulations, Chris!


wrote …

What a great video, I was glued to the monitor the whole time. And what a cert to be at; there were some big names there! Congrats Chris, I wish we could have hung out at the Games this year!


wrote …

epic!!! Sets a totally new bar for crossfiters. Whats next?????


wrote …

An amazing attempt for sure. But, am I blind or are many of those reps "short"?
Again, an AMAZING attempt but NOWHERE NEAR 100 crossfit specified reps.


Richard Meurk wrote …



wrote …

I got to meet Chris at my Cert class in Portland Oregon... What a stud! He is a great inspiration and a great advocate for Crossfit. Good job on the 106 man. We are in the process of starting up our own crossfit in Marysville Wa.

Keep up the good work.



wrote …

that was amazing. i got chills watching it. chris spealler is the man and a huge inspiration.

can't wait for cf games 2011


wrote …

Like a "ROCKY"


michael william wrote …

True grit and determination. Amazing!


michael william wrote …

True grit and determination. Amazing!


wrote …

True Inspiring Chris , Mental toughness is my next stage.


wrote …

HOW am i only seeing thus now!AWESOME!

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