Mat Fraser’s HWPO Boot Camp Prepares Contenders for the 2023 CrossFit Games

These elite athletes know how to work hard.

The HWPO (Hard Work Pays Off) team is one of many arms of the growing organization of five-time Fittest Man on Earth® Mat Fraser. Based on an inside look at a recent training camp, Fraser appears to be using his experience and resources to prepare the top contenders for the 2023 CrossFit Games, which will take place August 1-6.

On July 13, 2023, Buttery Bros posted a video on their YouTube channel. where they visited the HWPO team during camp preparation. Under Fraser’s guidance were CrossFit Games veterans: two-time Fittest Woman on Earth® Katrin Davíðsdóttir, top-10 finalist Jayson Hopper and Christine Kolenbrander (making her second appearance as a women’s singles competitor).

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Here’s a rundown of the dynamic exercises Fraser and company are practicing at their camp ahead of the 2023 Games.

handstand practice

The day’s training began with the assembled team performing a variety of handstand exercises. The path included a handstand walk up and down a ramp, a push-up, a pirouette (performing a 360-degree turn while holding a handstand), a second push-up, and a final ramp up and down.

Fraser also participated in this practice and soon developed a friendly rivalry with Hopper to the point of betting five dollars to see which athlete could complete the course in the fastest possible time. Hooper notched a win over the winningest champion in Games history. However, when the pair attempted to go for “double or nothing”, both elite competitors suffered technical failures and neither completed the course last.

Scarecrow snatch, power clean and back squat

Hopper had the Buttery Bros join him for some scarecrow bits. The athlete worked up to 84 kilograms (185 pounds). Hopper revealed that he is relatively new to Olympic weightlifting and his technique apparently leaves a lot to be desired. Fraser, a national champion powerlifter before his CrossFit training, has been helping him with that aspect of his training.

Davíðsdóttir and Kolenbrander took Buttery Bros through power cleans, eventually finishing at 95% of their respective one-rep highs. To close out this segment of the strength element of the session, everyone performed squats, working up to a five-rep max, taking three seconds to lower the first rep followed by traditional speed with the next four reps. Several participants reached the 300-pound (136-kilogram) range.

Echo Bike Race Interval

The next part featured the team rolling through 12 sprint intervals and Echo Bike every 90 seconds, a variation of the EMOM workout. The women’s goal was to burn eight calories in 15 seconds. The goal for men was to burn 12 calories in the same amount of time. They closed out this intermediate and functional morning portion with 15 legless rope climbs.

Sprint Metabolic Conditioning

Once the athletes had eaten and recovered, they returned for an afternoon session focused on an AMRAP (as many rounds as possible) format. There were six series with a work period of 2.5 minutes, resting 2.5 minutes after each series:

  • Erg Standing Bike — Women: 12 calories | Men: 16 calories
  • 12 burpee box jumps
  • four squat starts Women: 61 kilograms (135 pounds) | Men: 93 kilograms (205 pounds)
  • Max Ring Muscles

According to Fraser, the goal was to get the athletes’ heart rates up on the bike, tire them out with burpees, perform a technical move in the squat snatch, and then push to fatigue with muscle-ups.

game style training

After apparently “chilling out”, Fraser has his group go through a workout reminiscent of something that would happen at the Games. They went through four rounds of two handstand ramps, barbell thrusters, and 400-meter dashes. The boosters increased in weight and reps each round. They started with five reps at 95 pounds (43 kilograms) and finished with 11 reps at 125 pounds (56.7 kilograms).


Finally, to close out the camp day, Davíðsdóttir and Hopper took the feats outside. They started with a 300-meter (984-foot) lake swim, followed by 21 reps of double kettlebell snatches, 21 reps of double kettlebell front squats. The next round required another swim with 15 repetitions of each exercise, then a third swim with 9 repetitions per exercise, and a final swim.

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Fraser’s group appears to be ready and willing to work hard to capitalize on their upcoming Games appearance. At the very least, from a training perspective, they seem up to the task.

Featured Image: @butterybros on Instagram

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