Tuesday, May 31, 2011

What is Fat

The easiest answer is fuel. Not the only essential fuel, but pretty darn close to it. Most of us used to think that we had to carbo-load for energy, but carbs are a fairly inefficient mode of energy (however, relatively cheap.) Fat on the other hand, is slower burning, adds to DNA replication and aids in joint health. Fats (i.e. nuts, avocados, bacon, mmmmm!) are important throughout the day to keep a steady fuel supply and prevent crashing. Fat will only really store up with the aid of carbs (and insulin response.). Keep the carbs down, the fat up and you'll keep a better fuel tank without putting the reserve tank on your waistline.

5min AMRAP
6 kb clean (53/36)
50m sprint
10 dball slams (20/14)

Rest 2 mins

5min AMRAP
5 burpees
50 m sprint
10 wallballs (20/14)
50 m sprint

Monday, May 30, 2011


So it is that time again to talk about what's coming up this month:

This weekend will be the regional competition for the CrossFit Games. Come join the lot of us cheer on Ashley at the Santa Clara County Fairgrounds this Friday through Sunday. The Gym will still be open for regular class times. To find more info and to buy tickets, click here

The new Elements class will begin next week on Monday June 6th. Please tell your friends that have been wanting to join. More info here

Lastly, next Tuesday, the 7th we will not be having a 7:30 PM class. This is just for that day and that time. All other classes will be in effect.

Hope everyone had a good Memorial day.

All with weights
5 rounds
Fence Run
20 O.H. lunges
15 Sit ups
10 Deck Squats.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Please Remember

There is only one class tomorrow. It will start at 9 AM and will end sometime tomorrow. Bring some water, it is bound to be a long one. Then enjoy your Memorial day and remember why we have it.

Spread the Word

Like every year, we will only have one WOD on the Monday holiday. It will be at 9 AM and it will be long. You will earn your beer and BBQ. Please spread the word so that no one shows up at 4 PM (Jimmy and Kevin)!

Saturday, May 28, 2011


How many of you remember the start of the burpee challenge? 88 days ago a bunch of cfsjers took on the 100 day burpee challenge, starting at 1 going to 100, and like a marathon we watched people try their best, but eventually start walking and then stop all together. With this being said, many people now have a real concept of commitment. Let's back our folks for the last 12 days.

100 back squats 60% of 1RM
Each minute stop and do 4 burpees

Thursday, May 26, 2011

What's Up for the Weekend

Not a whole lot, but there will be a change to the Monday Schedule. Like every holiday, the only class that will run is the 9AM class. Then get out and enjoy yourself. Come ready for a long one.

(if the skill is there move up in weight. If not work on the progression.)

3 rounds of
10 thrusters (135/95)
10 dips (ring or bar)

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


While today's WOD seems like nothing more than 20 rounds of twenty one reps, it is actually a dirty disguise for overload training. To do it right, the wallballs would start at 20 and the kbs would start at 1. This way, as you are hitting fatigue, the weighted movement would increase in repetition thereby putting more stress on you and forcing an adaptation (i.e. increase) in your endurance and strength.

KB Cleans + Presses
3 x 2 x 10 (Mod to heavy weight)

20, 19, 18...1 KB Swings (53/35)
1, 2, 3...20 Wall Balls (20/14)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


As you may have noticed, there have not been any rest days in the past four weeks. We moved from the 3 on 1 off posting for a couple of reasons (but the main one being that we never had a rest day at the gym.) With this being said, we do not expect anyone to come 7 days a week, so, once a week, we'll post something about recovery. If it is not your day to take off, say the advice for that (hopefully, those) days. With that said...

Muscle recovery. Let's talk about the role of protein to recovery and rebuild. With the CrossFit workout, we do a lot of damage (intended and controlled) to our muscles. This influences rebuilding (hence getting stronger), and this is done through the body synthesizing new proteins. Taking in quality, lean protein will aid those muscles in recovering. Do not (if you can help it) use your off day as your cheat day. Fish, chicken, eggs, proteins that are easy to digest will get to the muscles more quickly, getting you prepped for the next WOD. Check out RobbWolf.com for more info on this.

5 Rounds
10 OHS 65/95#

Monday, May 23, 2011

Tabata Training

Reprinted from www.tabataprotocol.com

When you create an Oxygen Debt (read: heavy panting) your body has burned off all of the blood sugar (glycogen) it has and needs to replace all of that energy. It does this by burning fat. You don't want to try and burn fat WHILE you are exercising. You want to burn off CARBS as fuel when you are exercising.

Your body has 2 fuel systems, so to speak. There is Aerobic and Anaerobic.

Now, the Aerobic system uses oxygen to burn fuel, and the Anaerobic system doesn't. But one does not replace the other! What happens is you start out by burning fuel with your Aerobic energy system, and once you go past the point where there is enough oxygen in your system to provide Aerobic energy to your muscles, your Anaerobic system kicks in. Think of this as your SUPRA-AEROBIC zone.

To get there, you need to get your heart rate up past what is typically referred to as the 'Target Heart Rate Zone' using common aerobics lingo. You should use a Heart Rate Monitor to measure yourself while doing this program.

You will need to build up your endurance gradually. Therefore, you will not start out doing the Tabata Protocol the way it is typically described.

The original Tabata Protocol requires the following:

5 minutes of warm-up
8 intervals of 20 seconds all-out intensity exercise followed by 10 seconds of rest
2 minutes cool-down

but our WOD
Tabata This Pushups, Pullups,
Air Squats, Situps.
Count lowest rep interval per exercise.
Add all 4 together for final score.

Rest 1minute in between each exercise.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Putting it to Use

Now that you have the strength, speed and conditioning, join a number of us at Tough Mudder in September. It is a little walk through Squaw Valley (10 miles with a few thousand feet of elevation gain.) Nothing like obstacles, hills and length to pull out everything that you have been working on.

Thrusters (95/65)
Double Unders

The Test Wod

So some WODs are meant to strengthen and condition (these are the majority of the unnamed WODs we run), while others are meant to test progress (and yes those strength and condition too, but not as well.) The 300 is a classic test WOD. In fact, it was created by Gym Jones (don't get sucked in, it's easy to do) to measure the progress of the cast of 300 while training. If you have nothing better to do, and you actually read the article, you'll see the training was way more intense, involved and varied than this one workout, but the WOD was a decent measure of multi-modality training. The point is to use a WOD like this to check your own progress against yourself and others (you can fid results posted on beyond the whiteboard.)

25 pull ups
50 deadlififts (135/95)
50 push ups
50 box jumps (24')
50 floor wipers (135/95)
50 kb clean and press (not swinging, 1 arm at a time)
25 pull ups

Friday, May 20, 2011

Make Your Plans

Because if you haven't heard, one of our very own, Ashley Vrieze is going to be competing in the CF Regionals June 3-5. She will be taking on 6 incredible WODs, and we want to show our support. Please check out the Facebook page, or this link for ticket info.

8 min amrap
3 Handstand PU
5 Powerclean (95/65)
10 O.H. Lunge (45/25)

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Sorry for the Delay

I was a little tied up yesterday, so here are the last two WODs. One medium and one long, but both can be taken with intensity. Both are intervals and at a length thank can't be full on sprints. Since both are broken into two movements, if you struggle a bit, choose the stronger of the two movements to push it, and use the other as a bit of recovery. If you suck at the pull ups, push the run. If rowing is not your thing, then tear up the burpees.

WOD from Weds

Deadlift 5x5

5 rounds
400m run
15 pull ups

WOD from Thurs

20 minute amrap
500m row
15 burpees

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

And the Key to Long

Is to push through. Truthfully hitting the shorties as hard as possible will condition everything much better than the long. Well everything but one...the mental aspect. Marathoners and ultra runners don't train by running the distance of their events, however, they need to get one event under their belt to get the mental game down. Now that you know you can push it for 36 mins, see how tomorrows WOD goes for you. No rest day!

6 rounds of the following
2 mins max calorie row
2 mins max push ups (raise hands at bottom)
2 mins max dbal slams (20/16)
=18, 2 min sets

Monday, May 16, 2011

The Key to Short

Is to make it shorter. The short WOD has more potential for changing body composition than anything else. However, you have to push it. A trainer I miss dearly, Erik Hayes, used to introduce new members by explaining Fran. I would always joke that Erik could only do it for 3 minutes while I could do it for 9. I think the work ethic in most would make them take me seriously. Sprints are sprints. All outs are all outs. Make it quick.


25 deadlifts (265/185)
8 x 50m sprint w/ 15 sec rest between.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

The Gas Tank

Or capacity building has to be looked at in terms of short and long (or anaerobic and aerobic, respectively). Yesterday, we did a 5k run as a workout and a test. We always notice when our long range capacity builds (i.e. our time gets faster on these runs), but how many long capacity wods do we really do? The truth is that pushing yourself hard on the short days will increase the size of the tank all tge way around.


4x30 secs of max kb swings (Russian)
1 min rest between

Run 5k (I mean run)

Something New for the Weekend

So it might not be well known that Thursday and Saturdays have a couple of specialized classes. And, while these classes still have the same wods (or very similar), there is a little heavier lifting focus. There is also a little more focus on teaching the lifts. It might not be your regular thing, but check it out some time.

Deadlifts (225/185)

Saturday, May 14, 2011

The Art of the Clean

So while the clean might be one of the two most challenging lifts that we'll ever do, and while many of you might not have goals that included mastering this lift, there is a simple reason to take this one seriously...engagement. To do the lift correctly you need to fire the quads, abs, glutes (not just your back and hamstrings), and an exercise that gets you to utilize all of your muscles at once not only helps you with balance and coordination, but it is also a quick movement to efficiently burn lots of calories.

8 rds
8 kb cleans
8 deck squats
8 lateral jump squats
8 elevated push ups

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Better Lifting through Stretches

We often think of lifting as tightening and contracting. After all, how would loose muscles lift anything? Right? Wrong! The reason we don't lift to our full potential is because of an inability to get into the proper position for a particular lift. The back squat is the lift that readily comes to mind (even though the clean is way more obvious). In the squat, tight hamstrings and hip flexors keep the torso from being able to maintain an upright position (i.e. the proud or big chest.) You lean forward...good luck trying to get that weight up. So, what to do? Stretch and roll. I'll prove a point. The next lift day, do very small increments up. What I mean is on a 5x5 day, take a lot of warm up sets increasing 5-10% each time. You'll end up loosening up into the lift, and your lifts will get better in spite of the fatigue. Then, if that works, do some post lifting stretches. Long, slow stretching.

Back Squat
12 @ 65%, 8 @ 75%, 4 @ 85, 2 @ 90, then back down

KB presses 3 x 5 (heavy)


100 dball (20/16) slams for time

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Wallsballs A'comin'

So there really isn't much vinegar to this post, but you will all be happy to know that if (hint hint) there were wallballs tomorrow, you will not get snoot full of wall popcorn. As for a couple of notes on the last couple of days of programming. There have been questions about how to measure yesterday's wod. My thought is count only the rounds that you were able to complete within 60 secs. If this comes around again, chart progress by the increase in rounds that you completed. This wod is a good change up for understanding your limits because you can't half-a$$ it. You either make the round or you don't (unless of course you cheat, but then what is the point of working out.) Most of us (not me), will push through the point of exhaustion and frustration to gauge our potentials.

KB clean

3 x 5 deadlift @80%

5 min amrap
5 toes to bar
10 lunges
rest 2 minutes
5 min amrap
5 deadlift (155/105)
10 double unders

Monday, May 9, 2011

Standards are Stoopid. N' stuff.

"That's right, why should I give a crap?" "I'm not competing or anything. " "So I cheat my rep a little?" "What's the big deal?" Well, sometimes I would agree (especially with some of the standards with the sectionals), however, around the box there are reasons to opening the hip, contracting the muscles, going to parallel, etc. The reason is that we are making you flexible, fluid, strong, etc. Not opening up at the top the box jump, shorting your sit ups and not going full range on your push ups will give you a short range of motion, which will in turn shorten (but strengthen) your muscles, kinda like a body builder, and we know how flexible they are. So if you want it to be easier to get into a chair, and really hard to get out of it, then short your reps.

100 kbs (russian)

Every minute on the minute
5 strict pull ups
8 (er uh 6) burpee box jumps

Sunday, May 8, 2011

It's Gotta Be the Shoes, Money!

I know I am preaching to the choir, but I need you to do some convincing. Several times over the past week, my beliefs on cushy running shoes have been reaffirmed. Those pillows that some wear under their heels do nothing to stabilize during lifting, jumping and sprinting. After all, you wouldn't wear dress shoes to CrossFit (although they might be better suited than some of these shoes), then why would we wear "running" shoes. And, while these definitely don't help us hit our max potential, my concern is that they might be tweaking the knees in the process. Try this; during the lifting portion of the class, have them take off their Nike Airs and see if they don't become more stable and their squat doesn't improve a little.

5 rounds
100 m sprint
10 Pwr cleans (145/110)

Saturday, May 7, 2011

For your protection

No this is not a picture of when I fell off of the ladder. Today the Cfsj trainers brushed up on our safety skills. Coach V administered the 1st aid training. Best hope nothing happens to you.

TGU (53/36)
Strict pull ups.

Friday, May 6, 2011

When to go heavy

...or when to not. Jill's cheering from the peanut gallery yesterday (and not to make this an "inside" blog) got me thinking. Rarely do we, around the box, tell others to go lighter (barring cases of safety and injury), however, there is a purpose and an expected outcome for everything. So when in a WOD, do you challenge yourself to some extra weight and when do you hold back and still feel that you aren't sandbagging? Well a good rule of thumb is that if a WOD is a work limited (i.e. fran, helen, etc.), and you feel the need, go little heavy for a change. Your time will be off, but you will still do the same amount of work. If the WOD is time limited (i.e. an AMRAP or FGB), then try to stick with the Rx. The point is that you are trying to move as fast and much as possible in the given amount of time. Think about it, how badA.. are you really going to get in an AMRAP deadlift in 10 when you pump the Rx 225# up to 400# and get 2? True, you hit 400#, but how much work did you do, and how well did you really alter your work capacity?

Run 2k
5 rounds of
10 burpees
20 wallballs (20/16)
30 abmat sit ups
Row 2k

Just get done before the next class starts.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Work vs. Intensity (or the misunderstanding of going heavy all the time)

So Weds WOD was a smoker. I actually felt like throwing up for the first time in a long time (and trust me, this is not something that I brag about.) In addition to many of the specifics of my performance that I focused on (i.e. I spent way too much time off of the bar,) I can say that I hit it Rx’d, which was 75# thrusters for men. I felt I did okay at 8 rounds and 8 thrusters, but I hardly put myself in the league as many of our firebreathers. I came in to teach one of the later classes and I saw some of these athletes doing the same WOD but with 95#. Their results were down by 20-25% over mine (i.e. they hit in the 6’s), but hey, they went heavier, that means they worked out harder, right? No! Greg Everett has a great tool called a power calculator, and without going into it too much, it doesn’t take too much to figure out that if you increase the weight by 27% and the total reps go down by 60% you are doing less work over more time. There are cases for going very heavy in short time to push your anaerobic capacity, but 15 minutes is long past that, and a lot of your time will be standing, doing no work.

193.04 cm
76 in

90.72 kg
200 lb Movements

Thruster @ 75#
Reps - 128
Travel, Body - 0.53 meters
Work, Body - 44924.89 joules
Travel, Weight - 1.2 meters
Work, Weight - 51240.96 joules
Total Work - 96165.85 joules

900 seconds Work Performed
96165.85 joules
9806.03 kg-m
70931.93 ft-lbs

Power Output
106.85 watts
0.15 horsepower
78.81 ft-lbs/sec

193.04 cm
76 in

90.72 kg
200 lb Movements

Thruster @ 95#
Reps - 128
Travel, Body - 0.53 meters
Work, Body - 44924.89 joules
Travel, Weight - 1.2 meters
Work, Weight - 64905.22 joules
Total Work - 109830.11 joules

900 seconds Work Performed
109830.11 joules
11199.38 kg-m
81010.69 ft-lbs

Power Output
122.03 watts
0.17 horsepower
90 ft-lbs/sec

193.04 cm
76 in

90.72 kg
200 lb Movements

Thruster @ 95# (lower reps)
Reps - 78
Travel, Body - 0.53 meters
Work, Body - 27376.1 joules
Travel, Weight - 1.2 meters
Work, Weight - 39551.62 joules
Total Work - 66927.72 joules

900 seconds Work Performed
66927.72 joules
6824.62 kg-m
49365.89 ft-lbs

Power Output
74.36 watts
0.1 horsepower
54.85 ft-lbs/sec

Kb cleans (70/53)

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

What if I don't sweat enough

Does it mean that I'm not getting a good workout? The answer is yes. Mainly because it means that your not putting good work in. Let's face it, if there is a short WOD with 100 m sprints and it is taking someone 60 secs to run the 100, that ain't the WOD's fault for the lack of sweat. Intensity can get more out of a short WOD than most will get out of a 4 mike run.

5x5 strict(weighted) pull up
15 min AMRAP
15 Thrusters (75/55)
21 du

Keep the weight as prescribed and let this one smoke you. See how quickly your hope of 13-14 disappears.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

How do you know it works

This will not be for everyone, but we will be posting our wods on beyond the whiteboard, starting in about a week. We will try to make it available to everyone that wants it. This way the proof will always be there. But for now, here's today's WOD.

Plyo box jump variations

5 rounds of
30 secs burpees
30 secs plank
30 secs burpees
30 secs of superman hold
Count max burpees (but deduct a burpee every time you break a plank or superman hold)

Btw Kevin came to the cancelled class tonight. He did a little reading and a little rowing.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Was this your WOD?

If you came in on Monday, then for the first time, it was. As you have heard, we are going to a single WOD for all classes. This doesn't mean there won't be scaling, but your results will be the same as the other classes. Together we'll all get better, faster, fitter, (and I'll get a couple of days of posts out of this.)

Kb cleans
Shoulder press 3x5
3 rounds of
400m run
21 kb swings (53/35)
12 pull ups

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Every Second Counts (part 2)

So the point is goals. I seriously doubt any of you got into Crossfit for a strictly better Fran time. Think, would you allow 20 secs to be taken off of your Fran time if the trade off was no fat loss for a year. Well, bundling these moves more "efficient" you might be cheating yourself out of real gains when it counts. So, every rep to perfection so that you will make big gains (or losses) that really count.