Saturday
May032014

Clean and Jerk | Front Squat

Fitness: Clean Segment Deadlift + Clean + Jerk
If you have a hard time organizing the pull off the floor then perform the clean from the mid-hang, after the clean segment deadlift. 

Performance: Clean and Jerk 1-1-1 then, 85% x 1 x 2
Work up to a heavy clean and jerk in 3 attempts, then perform 2 singles from the hang at 85% of today's best lift.

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Front Squat

Fitness: 3 x 5 Linear Progression

Performance:  75% x 6 x 5

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Optional DIY Cash Out
50 Squats
550m Run
50 V-Ups or Hollow Rock

Did you know CFSBK has an experimental dance troupe? Just kidding. Soon.

Welcome CrossFit Prospect Heights to the affiliate community! They've got an open house happening today from 12-3:00pm! Details here.

  • Come get mobile and loose, CFSBKers! Today brings you so many opportunities to become supple, just like leopards:
    • Yoga with Coach Whitney at 10am
    • Active Recovery at 11am and 12pm with Coach DO
  • Good luck to everyone competing in Mayhem in the Meadowlands today at the MetLife stadium in New Jersey. Over half our coaches are competing, along with some CFSBK superstars. Let us know how it goes!
    • Coaches Jess, MeLo, Fox, McDowell, Noah, and Arturo
    • Laura M.Mike F., Dave F., Ryan J., and Ryan F

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Implementing Yoga into your Crossfit Life The Box

Friday
May022014

Rest Day

On Strength Training and Strength Cycle: A Q&A with Coach Jeremy

By Kate Reece

Coach Jeremy has been with CFSBK since practically the beginning. In Margie’s Underneath the Hoodie write-up, we learned numerous fascinating facts about the oft-bearded introvert with three younger brothers, such as that he was run over by a lawnmower as a child, is ardent about guns, zombies, and atheism, and as a third grader, was obsessed with an encyclopedia of Greek mythology. Since everyone in group classes doesn’t always get to interact with him as much as his Strength Cycle members and his PlayStation console, we wanted to solicit his thoughts for the blog about strength training. In pounds? The man presses 235, benches 345, squats 435, and deadlifts 505—so he certainly knows something about being strong. Hopefully the answers to his questions reveal a bit more about what all the cool kids are up to over on the platform. 

CFSBK: Talk to us about how you got into strength training. What has your athletic journey looked like and when did you first find CrossFit? 

Jeremy: I was always active and athletic as a kid. I wrestled and ran track all through high school and ran for three years at NYU. After school I went in-and-out of being in shape, mostly just running and doing stupid lifting when I was in shape. In late 2005 I started looking at how powerlifters trained and since I figured they were fairly strong, I decided that January 1, I was going to start a basic program. After a year of that, I kind of went through the same process with CrossFit—researching and dabbling, and finally jumping fully into it in January 2007. I trained for most of that year on my own before finding CFSBK.  

CFSBK: You're kind of famous in our slice of the world for going to the 2008 Games. Tell us about that experience. What was CrossFit like back then?

Jeremy: The games were different then—much smaller, no stadium. It was at Dave Castro's family ranch in Aromas. There were no qualifiers of any kind. You just signed up and competed. I had thought about doing the first games in 2007 but the timing wasn't right. So when the opportunity came around again, I didn't really think about it, I just signed up. I was pretty much alone the whole weekend. I hung out with a few of the CrossFit NYC crew, but I didn't know them real well. So mostly I just hit my workouts, ate some food, and napped in-between. It was three workouts on Saturday: deadlift and burpees, chest-to-bar “Fran,” and that fucking hill run. Sunday was a heavy squat clean “Grace.” I did alright. I think I placed 33rd out of almost 200. It was a fun experience, I'm glad I competed.  

CFSBK: How did you decide to start Strength Cycle?

Jeremy: Strength Cycle was an idea that David and I had discussed for a while back at the Lyceum. We saw the need for a dedicated strength program, there was interest in it from members, and it fit in well with my previous experience. Unfortunately, the space and equipment just weren't right and it went on the backburner. Once we moved into Degraw, the opportunity was there and the program moved quickly from there.  

CFSBK: How has Strength Cycle evolved since its first iteration? 

Jeremy: It's grown considerably. The first cycle was four people. From there it grew to a group of eight; after a few cycles I saw the need for some of the veterans to move onto more advanced programing and the B cycle was born. It stayed there for a while until I somewhat begrudgingly added the morning cycle which I still have a kind of love/hate relationship with. I love teaching it—for whatever reason the conversations are always a shade funnier in the morning (or maybe it just seems that way) and I really have a great time with the people in it. I do however hate waking up for it. I'm not a morning person by any stretch and I don't miss waking up before 6am on the weeks where we are on hiatus. In terms of what we do in class—that hasn't changed all that much. The beginners progression is boringly repetitive, no getting around that. You hit the same lifts over and over again adding weight each time, which is simple but effective. The B cycle gives me a little more ability to play with programming so it's gone through some different iterations over the years.  

CFSBK: It seems like the people who have done Strength Cycle all become proselytizers on its behalf. But for those who haven't encountered one of the platform's devotees and are curious, what should they expect if they were to join? 

Jeremy: The best way to describe Strength Cycle is that it's a lot like the lifting portion of your typical group class. You're paired up with some people on a rack and you lift. There are some differences—you lift with the same people each day, you have more time per lift (since that's all were doing), you don't have to think about your numbers, and you work with the same coach every time. I think what people like about Strength Cycle is the fact that it's slowed down, simplified, and more predictable compared to group class.    

CFSBK: What if they're scared they'll miss group classes? I'm asking for a friend. 

Jeremy: Well, you'll get to see group class every day, from the comfort of the bench you're sitting on.   

CFSBK: What are some misconceptions about lifting heavy weights (or about Strength Cycle) that you'd like to dispel?

Jeremy: People are too afraid of losing their conditioning. Being stronger makes you better at CrossFit. If you look at high-level CrossFit athletes, the thing that jumps out most is how strong they are. You can't have high-level strength endurance without first being strong.   

CFSBK: I'd imagine you've read almost everything every written about strength training. Give it to me in a no-bullshit elevator pitch. Why should people do this?

Jeremy: There is no training adaptation more important than strength. Without strength the other physical attributes are useless, or severely limited. Endurance without strength? Have fun doing boring shit for long periods of time. Mobility without strength? Hope you enjoy competitive stretching. Strength is about force production. Without it, power and speed are impossible, and how can you have fun in the absence of those qualities? 

CFSBK: There are some pretty awesome photos of you curling babies and eating enormous chicken drumsticks after lifting. I also heard that you hang out with kids at the Park Slope Food Coop when you're not at CFSBK. Tell me a bit about how you spend your days when you're not on the platform.

Jeremy: I'm no longer a member of the Coop. I'd rather just go to Whole Foods where they simply let me exchange money for goods and services without me having to sweep up a couple hours a month. I have three brothers with eight kids between them so I still have plenty of opportunities to hang out with kids. When I'm not at the gym, I'm fairly boring. I read a lot—books, Interwebs, comics. I put in quality time with the PlayStation and watch a fair amount of movies. Nothing that exciting.

If you have any questions for Coach Jeremy about Strength Cycle, shoot him an email at Jeremy [at] CrossFitSouthBrooklyn.com, or really, just ask him. 

  • Happy belated birthday, Jake L.!
  • CFSBK’s softball team, Las Calaveras, has their second game tonight at the Red Hook ball fields. Come cheer them on at 6:15pm! There will most likely be tacos to follow.

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Pump Iron—Bob Couch YouTube
Carbohydrate Confessions: Stories (and Data) from a Low Carb Convert Precision Nutrition
Should You Wear a Lifting Belt? CrossFit Invictus

Thursday
May012014

Muscle Up 101 | WOD 5.1.14

Fitness:

AMRAP 12 minutes

15 Kettlebell Swings
10 Ring Push Ups

Performance:

AMRAP 12 minutes
1 Muscle Up
3 Thrusters 115/75
2 Muscle Ups
6 Thrusters
3 Muscle Ups
9 Thrusters
4 Muscle Ups
12 Thrusters
5 Muscle Ups
15 Thrusters
6 Muscle Ups
18 Thrusters
7 Muscle Ups
12 Thrusters

And so on...

Post Rx as well as total reps and rounds completed to comments.

Assistance Work:
Handstand Practice

Our coaches beasting it out for Murph last May #tbt

Current Programming Cycle

You may have noticed that there is a nifty new link in the nifty new left-hand column, called Current Programming Cycle. The page includes the dates of each component of the cycle, the template, the programming plan per movement (such as the percentages or whether fitness is doing a linear progression), and any competitions or athletic events happening during the cycle. Many of you requested that the information on that page be more readily available and here it is!  

  • Save the date for our annual Memorial Day "Murph" WOD and BBQ on Monday May 26th! More information coming soon.
  • Today is Dean S.'s last day training at CFSBK. He is leaving us for a job opportunity in Baltimore. Dean, you will be missed. Best of luck! 

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The Knees-Out Cue Catalyst Athletics
How (and Why) to Flex Your Hips Outside
How Loving My 300-Pound Body Keeps Me Thin Huffington Post
Ice Age Melting: Rice May No Longer Be the Treatment of Choice for Injuries Guardian Liberty Voice

Wednesday
Apr302014

Snatch | Back Squat

Fitness: Snatch Segment Deadlift + Snatch
If you have a hard time organizing the pull off the floor, perform snatch from the mid-hang.

Performance: Snatch 1-1-1, then 85% x 1 x 2 from the mid hang
Work up to a heavy snatch in 3 attempts, then perform 2 singles from the mid-hang at 85% of today's best snatch.

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Back Squat

Fitness: 3 x 5 Linear Progression

Performance: 75% x 6 x 5
Rest about two minutes between sets.

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Gracie D. practicing handstands with Coach Ro. Welcome back, Gracie!

Veggie CSA - Sign Up Now!

Are you ready for a summer filled with gorgeous local vegetables? Time is running out to sign up for the annual vegetable CSA with Sol Flower Farm. The deliveries are weekly and begin in June! 

Sign-up directions, pricing, and FAQ can all be found here. They also offer a separate flower share. If you want to split a share with someone, post to the blog to find a buddy!

Questions? Email mignyc at gmail dot com. 

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How Far Fitness Has Fallen Outside
Huayhuash: A Mountain Bike Adventure in Peru Bike Magazine

Tuesday
Apr292014

Rest Day

  • Happy birthday, Daniel B. and Carolyn H.!

Starting Class with Introductions 

The original version of this article appeared on Coach David’s blog Inside the Affiliate. 

A longstanding tradition at CFSBK is to start classes with introductions and a short Question of the Day (QOD) while we do our general movement preparation. We’ve been doing this since the 2007 days when were still meeting in a park and over time, it’s become a staple of our class template. Initially, I just thought it was a nice way to start classes and get people acquainted, but it has since proven to be a valuable tool for setting the tone of the class, learning peoples’ names, and showcasing the personality of our members and coaches. The QOD reflects the importance we place on both having an on-going, continual conversation with our members and creating opportunities to foster a sense of community.

Tone
Especially for newbies, CrossFit group classes can be really intimidating. By adding some light introductions and silly banter at the beginning of class, we simultaneously break the ice and get everyone to relax and laugh at themselves.

Names
Intros are a great opportunity for people to help learn each other’s names, especially for regulars who often share a bar with the same few people each class. 

Multitasking
A lot needs to be accomplished within a group class and there isn’t much time to spend trying to create the warm and fuzzys. This is why we always couple intros alongside basic movement prep. You’ve probably noticed that class usually starts with the coach having everyone circle up to start some dynamic range of motion movements (DROMs). We also do this during ground-based mobilization. As folks are hunting around looking for tight positions, we go through names and questions. 

You may have noticed that in some larger classes, the coach will skip the QOD. We know this makes you sad, but completing the QOD sometimes becomes difficult since it will take longer to go around the circle and people might not talk loud enough for those across the circle to hear. (Talk louder!! We all want to know your answers!) It also makes it harder for our coaches to stay within the time budgeted for movement prep. Take these classes as an opportunity to ask questions of your bar partner or get to know a person you’ve never met before. 

Testimonials
We asked for our members’ thoughts on the Question of the Day and we’ve included some of their responses below:

Two people said the QOD was incredibly helpful when they came out of our Foundations program, in terms of getting to know the coaches and other members, and another wrote that it “makes us closer in a weird way.” Peter M. said that “knowing the names of the people you're working out with and a little something about their personalities is a part of what makes CrossFit special to me.” Lauren B. wrote that she’s a “big fan of introductions and hearing bizarre bits about people. When you're new it makes you feel part of what's going on instantly. Over time it builds community. Discovering your own strange habits and opinions is a nice bonus.” Richard G. wrote, “Of all the reasons I keep coming back to CFSBK (health, fitness, varied workouts), one of the main reasons has been the community. And learning names facilitates those encouraging hoots and cheers during the workouts.” 

We don’t underestimate the power of creating a novel and interesting experience in your day. We hope these are the kinds of little things that keep people coming back to CFSBK. We want to make space for you to put some names to new faces and have a laugh, and for us, it’s an opportunity to learn your names and have informal face time with everyone who takes classes at the gym.

We also love occasionally posting QODs on the blog. So tell us: What is your favorite piece of art?

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Mobility for People Who Hate Doing Mobility Catalyst Athletics
First Day of 2014 CrossFit Regionals Announced CrossFit
When You’re Just Learning to Walk, Every Step is a Personal Record CrossFit NYC
Weight Gains New York Times 

Monday
Apr282014

Bench Press | WOD 4.28.14

Fitness3 x 5 Linear Progression 
Add 2.5 to 5 lbs to last week. You should be making all of your reps at this point. If you missed reps last week, either redo the same weight or back off a few pounds. 

Performance: 75% x 6  x 5
Rest two minutes between sets. 

Post loads to comments.
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For Time:
100 Double Unders
then,
3 Rounds
25 Wall Ball 20/10, 14/9
7 Hang Power Clean 155/105
then,
40 Calorie Row

Yesterday's 10:30am Prospect Park WOD-ers 

  • Regular programming resumes today! We hope you enjoyed the outdoor WODs and yoga and AR.
  • In case you missed it yesterday, CFSBK's Endurance Program coach Michael O. shared some running training tips on the blog. Check it out!
  • There's a new post over on Inside the Affiliate about how to manage large group classes in an efficient and professional manner. It's only Part 1 since David had so much to say about it, so stay tuned for next week's too!

Help End Homelessness in Brooklyn 

CFSBKer Richard G. is a volunteer and board member of an organization called Brooklyn Community Housing & Services (BCHS). BCHS’s mission is to end homelessness in Brooklyn, and the organization is highly regarded for its work providing supportive services and housing to the mentally ill and homeless who might otherwise be living in our streets, subways, parks and armories.  Their annual gala is this Wednesday afternoon, April 30, at the Green Room right around the corner at 452 Union Street. There will be a cocktail party and silent auction, and music by Jean Rohe with special guest emcee Wesley Stace (John Wesley Harding). Richard would love for you to join! Purchase tickets here.

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A Life Saved by CrossFit CrossFit 
The Search for Our Inner Lie Detectors New York Times 

Sunday
Apr272014

Red Hook Running Track WOD

Do you smile while you run? CFSBK's Endurance Program coach Michael O. does!

  • CFSBKer Eric L. is competing in Strong Like Beast 2014 today. Get after it, Eric! Let us know how it goes! 

Sunday Alternative Programming

We are hosting Mark Rippetoe's Starting Strength Seminar and all normal in-house group classes are cancelled, including open gym. We are offering three track workouts located at the Red Hook running track. If you are not already signed up, please check the availability of each class HERE

Your group class membership will apply for any of these classes.

10am Track WOD
11am Track WOD
12pm Track WOD

Running Training Tips from CFSBK's Endurance Program Coach

Last Sunday, Michael O. and the CFSBK Endurance Program crew tested their training by running the Brooklyn 15K. This was a well-timed event with the Brooklyn Half Marathon only a few weeks away. Michael shared a few notes about how their training has progressed, and we’d love to share those notes with all our runners, especially since he's co-organizing the Track WOD today with Coach Arturo!
  1. Trunk Posture and Mobility: One of the initial things that the program tackled was making sure everyone was set up for success from pelvis to ribcage. Too often runners get obsessed with when their foot strikes the ground and the positioning of their arms (which are both also important to focus on eventually). But Michael says that if you first are picture-perfect in your trunk, everything else falls into place. The most important part of consistent running form is great pelvic and spinal stability, so the team worked for a few weeks on getting that all aligned.
  2. Shorter Intervals with "Open" Form: “Before we start running big 800s and miles, we need to first make sure all the running muscles work and work together,” Michael explains. An often overdone mistake of endurance training is stacking miles on a 70-80% active muscular system. If you increase volume from 30 to 40 miles in a week, the increase usually comes with less muscle activation and thus overloads the imbalance. By letting runners hit a bunch of short "sprinting" type efforts with a big and open form (hills, neuromuscular efforts, shuttle runs), Michael’s crew did their best to get a 90-100% muscular activation for any muscle that helps you run... so, ALL OF THEM!!
  3. Learn the True Meaning of Low-Intensity: Michael believes the most important piece of training is understanding that going all out plays a very small role in increasing one’s endurance (unless you’re heading to the Millrose Games next year). “When I ask our athletes how their run was after one of our full sessions and they say ‘not too bad,’ that's a great feeling as a coach,” he says. The idea is that not every run should leave you gassed and starving for air. Just as in CrossFit, you shouldn't walk away from every workout feeling like you blacked out. Michael encourages his endurance crew to hit their longer runs slowly but with great form, which improves their posture over time. If a runner spends all their time in a redline zone relative to capacity, that runner is much less likely to notice or have the strength to improve their form.
  4. Slowly Integrating More Refined Skills: “About two to three weeks ago, our group was looking good enough that we could start thinking about smaller components of the running form,” Michael reports. Those pieces involve ankle placement and application, and hamstring usage and synchronization with the hip flexor. The group is now integrating some intricate drills into their training, which will slowly meld into their form.

Have questions for Michael about running or about joining CFSBK's Endurance Program? Hit him up at michael.olzinski [at] gmail.com or at the Red Hook running track today. And good luck to all our Brooklyn Half runners on the remaining weeks of your training!
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13-year-old 142kg Clean and Jerk hookgrip
Dogs Annoying Cats With Their Friendship tastefully offensive
Boz vs. Ro CrossFit
The Light Therapeutic Intelligent Life