It’s the end of an era. We almost don’t believe it.

In the world of CrossFit, Mat Fraser has set record after record — most recently, with his fifth consecutive win at the CrossFit Games.

While his reign as the fittest man on earth very likely would have continued, Fraser shocked the community by announcing that he’s officially retiring from the sport.

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A post shared by Mathew Fraser (@mathewfras)

In an article he penned for Morning Chalk Up, Fraser went into more detail, writing, “For eight years, every day has been roughly the same: wake up earlier than I’d like, sell my soul to the Assault Bike and the swimming intervals and the 40-minute AMRAPs, eat, sleep, repeat.”

Now, he’s moving into a new chapter of life — one more focused on happiness and less on winning. A lot more friends and family, and probably a lot fewer burpees.

He’s going out on a high note, without a doubt. During the 2020 competitive season, the critics came out, certain that this would be the year that someone finally beat Fraser at the Games. It goes without saying that the critics were wrong. Fraser won, again — by a landslide.

And we have no reason not to believe that if he continued his training, nutrition, and lifestyle in the same manner, his trajectory would continue being victorious.

That might make it hard to understand why Fraser would ever want to retire, considering the success that he’s seen, but we have to remember that since his entrance into the competitive world of CrossFit, every waking — and sleeping — minute has been dedicated to winning.

Even the most minute of his decisions has been determined by one question: Will this help or hurt my training?

And as Fraser says, hard work pays off. Everything he’s done has put him on top of the podium again and again (and again and again and again).

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A post shared by Mathew Fraser (@mathewfras)

Here’s the thing: The life of a competitive athlete isn’t an easy one. The life of the five-time fittest man on earth certainly isn’t an easy one. But because Fraser makes it look so easy, we think that his victories have been effortless.

They haven’t.

It’s time for this champion to hang up his competition shoes.

While Fraser is moving onto the next stage of his life, we have no doubt that he’s changed the world of CrossFit, the world of fitness. His competition days might be ending, but his legacy continues on.

Main image: Mat Fraser/Instagram