Ben Smith

Ben Smith is known as The Fittest Man on the Earth. He earned this title in 2015, after winning CrossFit Games – one of many awards he’s earned during his accomplished career in CrossFit.

Growing up, Ben wanted to become a professional baseball player. While at first, this seemed like a high possibility, an odd turn of events during college prevented Ben from realizing his dreams. However, this didn’t matter for Ben, as he soon found a new competitive outlet  – CrossFit Games.

Across his career in CrossFit Games, Ben has appeared on the stage four times, placing third in 2011 and 2013, second in 2016, and first in 2015. With the exception of his first CrossFit Games, he’s never placed outside of top 10.

This is his story:


 

Ben Smith showing thumbs up for the picture during a CrossFit event

Athlete Statistics

Full Name: Ben Smith
WeightHeightAgeDate of Birth
185 - 195lbs (83.9 - 88.5kg)5'11" (180cm)28May 16, 1990
NationalityProfessionEra
AmericanCrossFit Athlete2010
Weight185 - 195lbs (83.9 - 88.5kg)
Height5'11" (180cm)
Age28
Date of BirthMay 16, 1990
NationalityAmerican
ProfessionCrossFit Athlete
Era2010


 

Ben Smith doing cardio while shirtless on a bike

Accomplishments

Benchmark Statistics

  • Squat – 480 lbs
  • Clean and Jerk – 335 lbs
  • Snatch – 300 lbs
  • Deadlift – 530 lbs
  • Fight Gone Bad – 520
  • Max Pull-ups – 76
  • Fran – 2:25
  • Grace – 1:51
  • Helen – 7:19
  • Filthy 50 – 16:17
  • Sprint 400m – 0:58
  • Run 5k – 20:20

 

Ben Smith lifting heavy medicine ball during CrossFit training


CrossFit Competitions

Open
YEAR DIVISION OVERALL RANK (WORLDWIDE) RANK (BY REGION) OVERALL RANK (BY STATE) OVERALL RANK (BY COUNTRY)
2018 Men 40th 2nd Mid Atlantic 1st Virginia 22nd
2017 Men 42nd 1st Mid Atlantic 1st Virginia 23rd United States
2016 Individual Men 65th 2nd Mid Atlantic 1st Virginia 39th United States
2015 Individual Men 3rd 1st Mid Atlantic 1st Virginia 3rd United States
2014 Individual Men 3rd 1st Mid Atlantic
2013 Individual Men 11th 1st Mid Atlantic
2012 Individual Men 24th 3rd Mid Atlantic
Regionals
YEAR OVERALL RANK DIVISION REGIONAL NAME
2016 1st Individual Men Atlantic Regional
2015 4th Individual Men Atlantic Regional
2014 1st Individual Men Mid Atlantic
2013 1st Individual Men Mid Atlantic
2012 1st Individual Men Mid Atlantic
Games
YEAR OVERALL RANK DIVISION
2016 2nd Individual Men
2015 1st Individual Men
2014 7th Individual Men
2013 3rd Individual Men
2012 11th Individual Men
Team Series
YEAR OVERALL RANK TEAM NAME MEMBERS
2016 1st Team Reebok Reunited Stacie Tovar, Emily Bridgers, Scott Panchik
2015 1st Team Reebok Classics Paul Tremblay, Emily Bridgers, Stacie Tovar
2014 1st Team Reebok East Emily Bridgers, Stacie Tovar, Scott Panchik
Lift Off
YEAR OVERALL RANK SNATCH CLEAN + JERK WORKOUT
2015 4th 38th (300 lb) 36th (370 lb) 8th (441 reps)

 

Ben Smith doing a heavy overhead press

Biography

Ben’s Introduction to CrossFit

During his childhood, Ben Smith was an avid baseball player. He was introduced to CrossFit by his father, who believed that Ben could improve his performances in baseball through CrossFit training.

“I played baseball growing up, and my dream was to be a Major League Baseball player. CrossFit fit the training I needed to be strong, fast, and have endurance on the field. My dad was in the military and introduced me to it.”

One night, Ben did a ‘Cindy’ CrossFit workout in his room. After 20 minutes, he was lying completely exhausted on the floor. From that moment on, his fascination with CrossFit began to grow.

“At the end of the 20 minutes, I was lying on the floor, breathing really heavily and I thought, ‘This is awesome!’ After that I read and read, following the website and researched whatever I could online about the sport.”


 

Ben Smith climbing rope shirtless


Transitioning From Baseball to CrossFit

After a few years of training in CrossFit, Ben’s physique improved significantly. He became stronger, leaner, and more explosive.

He then joined LaFayette College, hoping to enter a professional baseball team and begin his career there. Unfortunately, his plans didn’t come to fruition.

After just one semester, Ben had to transfer schools, preventing him from entering the baseball team he wanted. It was at this point, he decided to pursue CrossFit instead.

“I transferred schools after one semester to Old Dominion University in Virginia, right near home. Turns out by that time I couldn’t try out for the baseball team, so I started getting into CrossFit.”


 

Ben Smith lifting a heavy barbell while being shirtless


First Competition

Ben first thought of competing in CrossFit back in 2007, when he read about the Games. Two years later, his thoughts became reality.

He took part in his first CrossFit contest at the 2009 Mid-Atlantic Regional in Virginia Beach, which was held right next to the street where Ben lived.

“I figured why not go for it, give it a shot and try to compete with these guys at the Games. Going into the last Regional event, I was in 9th place.”

Ben ended up taking 1st place, which qualified him for the Games. He said; “It was 21-15-9 squat snatch at 95lbs and chest-to-bar pull-ups. That was hard for a lot of people in 2009.”


 

Ben Smith doing intense pull-ups while being shirtless


Becoming the Fittest Man on the Earth

Ben made his CrossFit Games debut in 2009. He entered the contest as the youngest competitor, at only 19 years of age. Ben said; “The first year, I competed just for fun.”

Since 2009, Ben has competed in CrossFit Games every year. He took third place in 2011 and 2013, second in 2016, and first in 2015 – becoming the ‘Fittest Man on the Earth.’

To this day, Ben’s records in CrossFit have been matched by only a small number of people. He’s the only person to make nine consecutive appearances at the CrossFit Games Individual category – a feat matched only by Rebecca Voigt.


 

Ben Smith performing the Snatch

Training

Ben Smith has between 3-5 workouts per day. These include strength training, conditioning, mobility work, high-intensity cardio, and other forms of exercises which help Ben stay in top condition for CrossFit Games.

Ben’s typical day of training looks like this; He wakes up early to coach the CrossFit classes. Depending on how he feels, he’ll do some endurance work to get him going. After coaching, he’ll train with his friends, doing MetCon and some strength work.

After lunch and a quick mid-day nap, Ben heads back to the gym to coach another CrossFit class. He’ll train in between classes, doing lifting and MetCon.

In the evening, he’ll have his last workout of the day. Which is usually something quick and intense, such as sprints or burpees.


 

Ben Smith doing an overhead press with a dumbbell during a CrossFit event

Nutrition

Ben’s Daily Meal Plan

Ben eats mostly clean foods, but his evening meal is usually less restrictive. As he says; “I eat clean during the day, but come dinner after a long day, anything goes…even pizza.”

He typically has bananas, eggs, and bacon for breakfast, along with a whey protein shake.

This is an ideal pre-workout meal in Ben’s eyes, as it gives him the energy and nutrients for his intense workouts. His lunch meal consists of chicken, guacamole, and sweet potatoes.

Supplements Ben Smith Takes

  • Recovery supplement
  • Whey Protein
  • Fish Oil
  • Magnesium

 

Ben Smith flipping a big and heavy tire

Idols and Influences

Early in his life, Ben was influenced by his father who encouraged him to try CrossFit to improve his performances in baseball.

Other influences in Ben’s life are his friends, training partners, and other members of his family who all support him on his journey in CrossFit.


 

Ben Smith jumping over a barbell

What we can learn from Ben Smith

Ben Smith is an accomplished CrossFit athlete. Ever since he started competing in 2009, he’s become one of the household names in the sport.

Like all successful athletes, he’s taught us that hard work is an integral part of achieving greatness. With the same discipline and work ethic as Ben, you too can realize your any goal you set for yourself.

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