Tag Archives: What is CrossFit?

What’s the plan now that the total is 2 weeks away?

8 Jan

Everything works, but only for so long.  – Dan John


Believe it or not, the programming we do is almost never random.  CrossFit is about measurable results and some of the most important results we can create in our members are raw increases in strength.  This increase in strength has the best transfer to life, your sports, your body composition, and even your mood levels!

This past week the volume of reps (metcons were short) and even the intensity (how heavy you went relative to your max) was kept low. The purpose of this is to prime you for the day of the CrossFit Total. If you’d like to know more about how this process works, check out this interview with a few experienced power lifters on how to prepare as a rookie (that’s all of us!) for a powerlifting meet (a lot like a CrossFit Total).

The goal for the week before the week of the total is to give you the chance to still perform your lifts with good accuracy and speed, without fatiguing you so much that you end up peaking your performance before Saturday, January 21st. You simply want your body to remember how to move aggressively – but without taxing your system. What does this mean exactly? Speed is king.

A slow lift will fatigue you but a fast lift executed properly will prepare you. To get the most out of CrossFit Total day, make this your goal in the next two weeks. Stay fast. Stay mobile. Get good rest.  And stay relatively light, but keep training!

The metcons in this week will be intense, because most of them will be benchmarks, but my intention is to have you beat your old times, not kill yourself over attempting everything rx’d so time caps will be in place. If you’re looking to fully optimize your recovery for the Total, try not to attend sessions where metcons take over 10 minutes, OR alternatively, simply cap your time for metcons at 10 minutes for the next two weeks. Of course, if optimizing the Total is not your goal, don’t sweat it.

After the Total a new cycle will be introduced, because, as quoted above, “Everything works, but only for so long.” – until then, finish this cycle out as strong as you can. You won’t regret it later!

Train hard. Have fun! And get excited – a new cycle of lifts is coming – in the meantime – sign up for the Total to set your benchmark!


Friday, 9/16/11

15 Sep

This is your last chance to buy a ticket to the Paleo Seminar that will be taking place this Saturday at CFCC from 9a-4pish. Again, this Seminar is by FAR the best way you can get a step up on to the next round of the Nutrition Challenge set to begin in October.  One lucky attendee will win a free month of membership at CFCC!

Are you looking for a great way to tell your friends about CrossFit?  Send them this link – which includes the video posted below.  Also, in case you’ve been living under a ROCK – the CrossFit Games are on ESPN2!  You can view the available times to watch at the link above as well.

Sean Braun, nursing a bum wrist, finds out that you can definitely get your deadlift's worth out of a single arm sumo deadlift. What's YOUR excuse for not training?

MOBILITY: Band Assisted Hand Behind the Back Stretch, 1 minute each side.  Band Assisted Pec Stretch, 1 minute each side.
POSTURE AND STABILITY: Ring Row assisted Scapular Retraction: 1 minute.
ACTIVATION: Clapping Push-ups, for max power, sets of 2, 5 minutes.  Use a band to create the largest rebound from the bottom position that you can.
SKILL WORK: The Bench Press
METABOLIC CONDITIONING: “Lynne” http://www.crossfit.com/mt-archive2/003092.html or Five rounds for max reps of: Body weight bench press, Pull-ups.

Post reps for both exercises in all rounds.

You may choose whether to do strict or kipping pull-ups.  Just remember to record your score!  In lieu of a bodyweight bench press the skill work portion of today will be spent determining what load you should use for the Workout of the Day.

Monday, 12/5/10

5 Dec

Sessions tomorrow will be at 6a, 8a, 12p, 5p, 6p (running), and 7p.  See you there, friends!

plyo pushups, 5×5.  5 rounds : 2 Turkish getups each side (2/1.5), 20 box jumps, 1m front plank.


Rest is needed. It’s the time you need to get done what you need to get done in CrossFit.

If you can’t lift something heavy (a.k.a you’ve reached failure) you’ll need rest to do it again.

If we give you rest, you’ll take it. But how?

Will you ready yourself mentally for the next 3, 2, 1 go?  Will you speak yourself into defeat?  Will you breathe?  How? Will you sit down? Will you lie down? Will you panic?

Rest is needed, but how much rest? and what kind of rest?

If you’ve been training with us for some time now you know the feeling: you are in the middle of the metcon and you put the weight down, not because it’s impossible to lift, but because to do so, will hurt.  Not injure you, but hurt you. You want rest.

You may also know this feeling: you have just finished the metcon and you are fine.  You are breathing again, maybe talking, maybe getting a drink of water.  Your heart-rate is settling in and you have begun to recollect the number of reps, rounds, or points you and your innards have just created.  And in the back of your mind, you want that rest back.

Rest is also what you need to get stronger.  You need it between strength sets. You need it during metcons.  You need it between days of CrossFit, and sometimes, even seasons of CrossFit.

Every athlete rests.  Whether it’s between huge bursts of power or prolonged exertions of effort, your rest can make or break your training…and your performance.

It’s been said before that your training is only as good as your recovery.  How do you recover?  Both immediately and over the long term?  Are you thinking about strategies to do this?  And for those of you who have been in this game for a while now, what are the tricks of the trade?

Stewed Tilapia, another great (and easy) recipe from Whole9. Check it out!

Stuff on Sleep from Robb Wolf – sidenote: I totally met some researchers at Betty’s who were responsible for creating some of the studies in T.S. Wiley’s book (referenced by Wolf).

Saturday, 10/30/10

30 Oct


21-15-9 reps for time of:

Deadlifts (225/185)

Overhead Squats (135/95)


Images and Videos from CrossFit.com

Here are some crazy videos of CrossFitters owning at this WOD:

Chris Spealler mov, wmv

Dave Lipson mov, wmv

Elyse Umeda mov,wmv

Heather Bergeron mov, wmv

Because your own strength is unequal to the task, do not assume that it is beyond the powers of man; but if anything is within the powers and province of man, believe that it is within your own compass also.  – Marcus Aurelius

Workout Logs are officially up!

18 Oct

Ah, yes – workout logs… providing me with memories of a time when all I knew of CrossFit was Annie of “Annie” fame.

Hey, folks –

If you don’t have a CrossFit Message Board Workout Log or are wondering what Grog was squatting in 2008 you really need to pop a squat (hopefully to a chair), grab a cuppa joe and figure out how to record your CrossFit progress!

Workout Logs

If you need help starting a Workout Log, please email us!

Happy Squatting,


P.S. For true comedy at its best check out Caitlin Slattery and Angie Marfisi’s workout logs.

What is CrossFit Endurance?

6 Oct

More strange things to do on Camac Street in the name of sick nasty performance!

This is a re-post of Liz’s excellent write-up!  If you are coming to running classes or even interested in coming to running classes please read!

What is CrossFit Endurance?

CrossFit Endurance (CFE) is first and foremost CROSSFIT.  CrossFit is primary for the endurance athlete and the bulk of the programming for an endurance athlete will be CrossFit wods. As you all know, CrossFit is constantly varied, functional movement, done at high intensity.  CrossFit is broad and challenges all domains of fitness.  CFE, working from the base of CrossFit, allows an athlete to focus on cardio respiratory endurance, or one’s ability to maintain a certain aerobic output for a desired period of time.

You all know what endurance is:  5ks, 10ks, half marathons, marathons, triathlons, ultra-marathons, and so on.  Many of us, myself included, got into fitness through this kind of activity.  Running has always been a passion of mine.  I ran track in high school, 5ks in college, and completed 3 marathons in my 20s.  I loved running and training for marathons, but both started to wear me down physically.  I trained for marathons the way that most people train for marathons, with a focus on quantity, not quality.  The common way to train for most endurance events is to train a lot.  Indeed, the gold standard for most marathon training is the 20 mile run two weeks before the marathon itself.  Endurance athletes program for time and miles, not results.  My training group programmed “junk miles” workouts twice a week, runs where we would just get out and run 5 miles for “time on our legs” without regard to performance or form.

Sound familiar?  Sound like oh too many session spinning away on the elliptical without a clue if you are improving or what improvement really is?

CrossFit Endurance is about quality not quanity.  REST makes you better, NOT more work!  CFE focuses on smart programming and performance.  You will not be doing more work poorly when you start CFE.  You will train smarter and be a better athlete for it.  You will spend less time training and more time with your family and friends!

CFE can be applied to lots of endurance sports, including running, rowing, swimming, and biking.  For now, CFCC is focusing on running (but let’s talk if you want do a tri!).  The first thing that we are going to look at is your running form.  Remember, it’s about quality, not quantity, and quality will obviously suffer if your form is bad (bad form also leads to injuries).  During the classes, we will break apart the way you run now and put it back together again so that you are a more efficient runner.  Drills will be key to reinforcing proper movement patterns.

Warning: this is not just people who want to run marathons!  This class is for everyone!  This class, and CrossFit Endurance in general, benefits more than just the endurance athlete.  It also helps athletes who want to work on their running form or athletes who want to work on their met-con.  Athletes who want to work on form only are welcome to come and just do the drills with us.

At CFCC, endurance athletes should hit the major lift days: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday.  Go to the morning class on Tuesdays if you are coming to the running class in the afternoon.  It would be great to rest on Wednesday.  Remember that rest makes you better!

We will talk more about programming for endurance events that you want to race when appropriate.

You can read more about CrossFit Endurance here!

Sunday, 10/3/10

4 Oct


All classes cancelled!

So I’d like to write a little love letter to the day, to our gym, to the people in the above photo… but since this is the blog, I’ll try not to gush too much.  Promise.

There are a lot of reasons that I, as a CrossFit Coach, love the idea of roping (yes, roping) someone into competing for the first time.  The biggest of all the reasons I have however is that you can attend session after session of CrossFit and still not really understand what sets it apart from many other communities.

You can kind of get the idea of what it is, who the people are, how the method works, why it’s so much cooler than fending for yourself on a creaking treadmill in some lone corner of a globo gym… but without competing you’ll be missing out on what makes CrossFit unique.

As many of you already know, CrossFit is about more than just a good workout.

CrossFit is not about being alone, and it is not about looking suavemente as you cross the finish line (although you just might some days, or if you’re Sammy).  Sometimes you look God-awful.  Sometimes you foam at the mouth (REID?).  In short, sometimes you just have to be willing to be humbled.

Not everyone is up for the unexpected.  Not everyone enjoys a challenge every. single. freaking. day.

But for those amongst us who do, CrossFit is for them.

You waltz into the gym every day and prepare to do battle with more than just your body, you race against your mind, you challenge your senses (HELLO, INDIAN FOOD RESTAURANT SMELLS during FRAN!).

You do all of this.  Weekly.  According to schedule.  You rise and you fall.

But do you put yourself on the line for others?  Team Workouts change the way you train.

The pinnacle moment for me as a coach and as an athlete yesterday was watching our second team compete.  CFCC Team 2 consisted of Reuben, Adam, Ezra, Karis, Caitlin, and Liz.

You all know these six to be incredible athletes and exceptional individuals.  What I saw yesterday however, was what makes me love my job: at the end of the day, CrossFit is about realized potential.

At the start of the first heat, Caitlin and Karis, with great fear and trembling – or maybe just with a little sleep-deprivation – found me and told me that they had never overhead squatted 65lbs. before.  “Hmm”, said I, and gave them a few last minute pointers before they were called to set for the start of the competition.

What I saw next was nothing short of gorgeous.  Like pros, Karis and Caitlin overhead squatted like they had done it a million times, Liz flew through each station and gutted it out on the row (as we all knew she would), and the men of the team crushed the chest to bar pull-ups in quick succession and with outstanding form.

I can tell you that I knew the team would do well and that each one of these athletes was fully capable of performing as they did.  I can tell you all that.  But really, it is another thing entirely to see it.  That is to say, if they hadn’t put their names on the board, folks, it would have never happened.

I suppose what I want to say most of all is how very proud I am to have the immense privilege of coaching all of you.  You are all capable of so much and never cease to amaze me.

If you are willing to explore your potential as an athlete here at CFCC there is great reward on the other end; there is the irreplaceable camaraderie of a collective job well done, there is fun, and there is the great satisfaction of doing a thing you thought you could not do.

I really do believe that strength anywhere is strength everywhere.  When I train and compete with you all, you make me stronger – as an athlete and as a person.  I’m thankful for that… and I hope to be able to guide as many of you as possible through the same experience.

If you are on the fence about throwing down with the rest of CFCC in a team or individual competition, don’t be.  There is nothing to lose, and everything to gain.  Join us next time, ok? 🙂

Stay strong,


PS – In case you were wondering, every second does count.