5 Rounds, For Total Time:
20 Pull-Ups
30 Push-Ups
40 Sit-Ups
50 Squats

Rest exactly 3 minutes between rounds.

Post total time and Rx to comments. 
Compare to 1.26.2014 and 2.17.2013

Things are coming together across the street! Join us next Saturday (4/4) from 2-3pm for the grand opening of 608 Degraw Street. All regularly-scheduled group classes that day will also have a special surprise. Get psyched.

News and Notes

  • Scheduling Note for Next Week: Our schedule WLL NOT change for Easter (4/5). All classes will run as normal.
  • Want to work out today at 9am and bring your kid/s? Sign your kids up at the Front Desk for CFSBK Kids Club, and learn more here
  • DON'T FORGET TO RSVP TO CLASS: Click on the Class Schedule and RSVP tab in the left-hand column (under General Information) and select the class for which you'd like to RSVP. 
  • Happy birthday, Lisa C.!

Good Guys Radiolab 


Open Workout 15.5


Open Workout 15.5 

27-21-15-9, For Time:
Row (Calories)
Thrusters 95/65

Post time to comments.

SCALED Open Workout 15.5


27-21-15-9, For Time:
Row (Calories) 
Thrusters 65/45

Post time to comments.

Juan hitting his snatch 

News and Notes

  • Come watch CFSBK's Competition Team take on 15.5! Our gym's strongest will be tackling the latest Open WOD this afternoon. They'll start warming up around 2:15 and the first heat is at 2:45pm. Come cheer them on!
  • Feeling sore or tight from all your PRs this week? Check out Yoga for Athletes at 10am or Active Recovery at 11am or noon today!
  • Want to work out tomorrow at 9am and bring your kid/s? Now you can! Sign them up at the Front Desk for CFSBK Kids Club, and learn more here
  • DON'T FORGET TO RSVP TO CLASS: Click on the Class Schedule and RSVP tab in the left-hand column (under General Information) and select the class for which you'd like to RSVP. 

Netherlands Gym Built In an Old Church (!!!)
Roller Rink Converted to a Gym 


Rest Day

Jacques D. got back from his epic ski touring trip in BC earlier this month. In response to whether CrossFit prepared him for the trip, he wrote: "Ski touring is 90% slow climbing, 10% skiing. We talk about climbing at an all-week pace. The idea is to never stop and never red-line. CrossFit helped a lot with overall conditioning—a lot of wear and tear and muscle soreness. Having strong quads and hamstrings helped a lot to avoid fatigue." If you have questions about ski touring, Jacques would be psyched to talk to you about it! Email him at jacquesdelori [at]

  • Lots of new Lost and Found items up in our Flickr, here and here. Pick up by April 9th or we're giving it away.


OUTWOD is a collective NYC group bringing together LGBT CrossFitters and allies together one WOD at a time to enjoy the virtues of CrossFit and form new friendships along the way. CFSBK proudly supports this diversity within the sport of CrossFit and invites everyone to join this Saturday afternoon WOD and post-event social. Cost is $25, with proceeds going to the Family Equality Council. 

DATE: April 11, 2015
TIME: 2:30pm
WHERE: CrossFit South Brooklyn, 597 Degraw Street, Brooklyn, NY 11217
AFTER WOD SOCIAL: Post-WOD, we will head to a nearby watering hole called Threes Brewing. They will be equipped and ready for us.


We decided to go with The Family Equality Council as our organization of choice, since Ali Forney Center was a recent beneficiary. Thanks to everyone for your input!!

Family Equality Council connects, supports, and represents the three million parents who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer in this country and their six million children. We are changing attitudes and policies to ensure that all families are respected, loved, and celebrated—including families with parents who are LGBTQ. We are a community of parents and children, grandparents and grandchildren that reaches across this country. For 30 years we have raised our children and raised our voices toward fairness for all families.

Canoe of War 
How You Know You Felt at 8pm Last Night 


Crush Week WOD 3.26.15



AMRAP, 20 Minutes:
2 Muscle-Ups
4 Handstand Push-Ups
8 Kettlebell Swings, 32/24kg

Post rounds to comments.
Compare to 10.31.2013


Partner AMRAP, 20 Minutes:
10+10 Calorie Row
10+10 Dumbbell Power Clean
10+10 Dumbbell Push Press 
Partners alternate 10 reps each of each movement for compete rounds for 20 minutes.

Post rounds and Rx to comments.

The new space is opening very soon across the street, so we wanted to post this #tbt video of what our current space looks like with barely anything in it. 

News and Notes

  • 15.5, the final 2015 CrossFit Open WOD, will be announced TONIGHT at 8pm! Follow along here
  • Congrats to Danae on passing her oral examination yesterday and earning her PhD in philosophy!
  • Happy birthday, Steph M.!

All the PRs This Cycle

Last week wrapped up our 8-week cycle of bench pressing, back squatting, snatching, front squatting, deadlifting, and cleaning. Yet again, we saw a landslide of impressive personal records. If you posted on the blog, we recorded it below (in no particular order). Congrats, everyone.  

  • Christian A.: Deadlift at 255#, Back Squat 3RM at 210# and 1RM at 215#, Bench 3RM at 155#
  • Shawn: Deadlift at 315#, Clean at 185#, Hang Snatch at 125#, Back Squat at 225#, Bench at 205#
  • Jason M.: Clean at 286#, Deadlift at 464#
  • Charlie: Clean (from the hang, full squat) at 133#, Front Squat 3RM at 170#
  • Allie B.: Deadlift 3RM at 145#, Bench at 80#
  • Coach K HarpZ: Snatch 120#
  • Lauren S.: Clean 125#
  • Mrav: Power clean at 195#, Bench at 245#, HBBS at 305#
  • Ben L.: Bench at 250#, Squat at 330#, 
  • Sarah M.: Mile run at 8:40
  • Sean: Back squat at 125#
  • Matt K.: Bench at 356#
  • Joel W.: Back Squat at 415#, Bench at 240#
  • Coach Lady Fox: HBBS at 270#, Bench at 155#
  • Amanda Mc: HBBS at 145#
  • Colleen: Back Squat 3RM at 135#, Bench 3RM at 75# (best quote: "3 reps is like a party!")
  • Ruth: Back Squat at 235#
  • KH: Bench at 110#
  • Laura: Back Squat at 195#
  • Kate R.: Back Squat at 225#, Front Squat at 165#
  • Ryan L.: Back Squat at 265#
  • Jenny M.: Bench at 105#
  • Michael A.: Bench at 280#
  • BK: Bench at 210#
  • Michael C.: Clean and Jerk at 215#
  • Coach Whit: Bench at 135#
  • DH3: Back Squat at 375#

If you PR-ed one or many of your lifts last week and haven't posted yet, post in the comments today to let us know!

The Strange World of Felt Presences The Guardian
Science Versus Music Nigel Stanford 

What are you hoping to see revealed as the final Open workout tonight?


Crush Week WOD 3.25.15

For Time:
550m Run
21 Back Squats @ Bodyweight
400m Run
15 Back Squats @ Bodyweight
270m Run
9 Back Squats @ Bodyweight 

Post time and Rx to comments.

Joe getting up during Death by Burpees on Monday night

News and Notes 

  • GET FIT OR BE HACKING UPDATE: We've added a "Scaled" (i.e., no coding!) option for non-coders (or those who won't want to code competitively)! Check out the updated event page for more info and register today on CrowdRise. We hope to see you all on May 2nd!
  • There are still a couple spaces left in Ken's Gymnastics Skillz class, on Sundays from 2-3:30pm, March 29, 2015 through May 3, 2015. Register here before it sells out!
  • Happy birthday, Jared K.

2015 CrossFit Open Leaderboard: Team CFSBK

The results for 15.1, 15.1a, 15.2, 15.3, and 15.4 are in, and here are our team's leaders! Congrats to everyone who has been pushing themselves the last couple weeks with these tough workouts. We can't wait to see the final workout when it's revealed on Thursday...

1. Coach MeLo
2. Coach K HarpZ
3. Coach Lady Fox
4. Coach Whitney
5. Lauren B. 
6. Ellie M. 
7. Steph M.
8. Coach JB
9. Lauren S.
9. Kate R. (tied with Lauren)


1. Alex B.
2. Coach McDowell                
2. Alex N. 
4. Matt K.
5. Coach David
6. Coach Noah
6. Pierre D. (tied with Noah)
8. Zach H. 
9. Bob S. 
10. Jason M.


1. Joy M.
2. Mare L.
3. Asha B.
4. Colleen M.
5. Christina L.
6. Micheline D. 
6. Barbara K. (tied with Micheline)
8. Shawn C.
9. Francine D. 
10. Bree P.

1. Pierre D. 
2. Bob S.
3. Peter M. 
4. Coach Fox
5. Michael R.
6. Andy M. 
7. Chris P. 
8. Carlos G.
9. James K.
10. Bjorn B.

The Physics of Droplets The New York Times 
What It's Really Like To Be a Male Ballet Dancer Shape 
How To Voodoo Floss Your Own Shoulder 


Rest Day

Congrats to DH3 who PR-ed his squat on Sunday at 375#! 

  • Happy birthday, Rebecca GC and Betsy S.!

All The Good Reps, and Only the Good Reps

By Chris Fox 
Originally published on 1.12.2015 

We’ve almost all been there before. You’re tired, it’s your 50th pull up, handstand push up, power snatch, or whatever. You sort of, kind of, maybe executed full range-of-motion—but then again, maybe you didn’t. Then, you maybe even tried to squeeze in another (no) rep! Coaches see this, your fellow athletes see this, and you see this.

With a judge in front of you—whether it’s a regular group class, during the Open, or at a local throwdown—you’ll have a harder time getting away with garbage reps. I’d suggest that you shouldn’t let yourself off the hook in your daily training either. Your continued progress over the long haul is the ultimate goal. You want your movements to be truly quantifiable. If you count reps where sometimes your chin gets over the bar and sometimes it doesn’t, then you’re left comparing apples to durian fruit.

At CFSBK, we strive for virtuosity—the principle that you should aim to perform even the simplest movements exceedingly well. With effort and practice, your 300th squat in “Murph” can and in fact should be a mirror image of your first. Be honest about your reps and if you’re not 101% sure, then don’t count them. It sucks, yeah, but don’t be that person who moves really fast but really poorly. Don’t be the person who the next class coming in looks at and says “Uh uh... that’s not a rep.” Be the person with whom you’d be impressed, even if it slows you down a bit. Consider that you may need to scale WODs sometimes. The Rx isn’t for everybody, and even if you do some or most of our WODs Rx’d, there may be some that you should scale load and/or volume. Then, even when you really, really tried to do a good rep but didn’t, resist the urge to count your effort as execution. Only count the good ones.

Crush Week began yesterday. Remember: all the good reps, and only the good reps!

Tonight at 7:30pm: Pilates with KH (a.k.a. Cage)

Have you ever been told by a coach or PT that you have a weak core? Are you not sure what "keep your ribcage down" means? Do you suffer from a tweaky lower back after lifting heavy weights? Help is on the way! The Pilates Method can be great "accessory work" for a Crossfitter, not only because it improves flexibility and strengthens the abdominal and back muscles, but mainly because it can help you figure out HOW to use these muscles properly. Come join Kristin Hoesl (KH) in CFSBK's first ever weekly Pilates class. We'll go over neutral pelvis, engaging the transversus abdominis (say WHAT?), stabilizing the rib cage, and finding good shoulder girdle positioning. So if any of this sounds intriguing to you, come drop in on!

Schedule: Tuesday nights at 7:30pm upstairs in the CFSBK Annex
Price: Individual classes and 5-packs can be purchased here, or you can use your regular CrossFit group class membership to attend 

Learn more about KH in our interview with her, called "'Mad Abs, Yo!' How Pilates Complements CrossFit, and Getting to Know Kristin H."

Want To Improve Your Gymnastics Skillz? 

Join guest gymnastics coach Ken H. as he takes you through four weeks of gymnastics strength training. This 1.5 hour long class will incorporate different facets of body weight strength training and movement. Specifically, each class will be composed of three to four distinct areas, such as: warm-up and active mobility, rings skill work (muscle ups, levers etc), body weight strength conditioning, balance (on hands and feet), and flexibility. Students will be asked to have a goal or intention to focus on for the next six weeks. Students can then focus on that goal outside of class.

When: Sundays from 2-3:30pm, March 29, 2015 through May 3, 2015
Price: $120 for 6 Weeks
Cap: 8 Participants
Pre-Req: previously attended rings class, or 1 pull up for women, 3 for men 


Fastest Star in the Galaxy Got an Unusual Start The New York Times 
How CrossFit Became a $4 Billion Brand Forbes 
An Open Letter From Your Horrible Facebook Friends The New Yorker 


Crush Week WOD 3.23.15

NFL Combine Bench Press Test

Max Reps at:
RX - 225/125
Scaled - A) 185/95, B) 155/75, or C) 135/65


Post loads to comments

Death By Burpee

At the call of "GO", perform 1 burpee. Every minute on the minute thereafter add 1 burpee until you can no longer keep up with the clock.

 Your score is the round that you cleared plus any burpees you completed before the start of the next minute. 

Post rounds to comments.

Underneath The Hoodie: Arturo Ruiz

By Kate Reece

Vital Stats
Height: 5’11’’
Weight: 185 pounds
DOB: September 19, 1975
Born and raised: Born in Puerto Rico, raised in Antigua
Place of higher learning: Alfred University

It all began in the Caribbean, on a tiny sun-drenched island called Antigua. The island stretches only 108 square-miles, the blue sky a vast dome disappearing into the kind of water that is clear as glass. Arturo Ruiz was raised in the 70s and 80s in Antigua mostly by his grandmother Rose, a strict Catholic woman, whose own parents emigrated from Lebanon at the end of the nineteenth century. He was born in Puerto Rico but when he was still a baby, his Antiguan mother divorced his half-Italian, half-Puerto-Rican father and moved Arturo back to the house where she had grown up. In 1981, when Arturo was five or six, his mother decided to move to New York. She considering taking him, but decided along with Rose that he should remain in school, at an all-boys Catholic school called St. Joseph’s Academy.

That house, where Arturo lived with just Rose and his uncle Bernard, was minutes from the beach. As he grew up, he became responsible for mowing the acre of grass that made up the backyard. He pushed the heavy mower around an old guesthouse and crumbling bandstand, where bands from around the island used to play into the late hours of the night. The government would occasionally shut water off due to shortages, and Arturo was also responsible for carrying rainwater that had collected in their underground cistern back into the house.

Rose, whom Arturo’s family called Granny, woke up early on Sunday mornings to begin cooking a large spread of Lebanese food—cabbage rolls, kibbe (crushed wheat, minced onions, and beef she’d ground herself), and stuffed grape leaves. She packaged it into containers that everyone in the family picked up after they’d had breakfast at his aunt Bernadette’s home, and they would all go the beach afterwards to windsurf or wakeboard. Arturo’s closest friends were his cousins—Yusef, Raymond, Stephen, Maurice, Toufik, Phillip, and half a dozen more—and living on an island meant that he saw them almost every day. His cousins always seemed to be running around and getting into trouble, but not Arturo. Rose was a kind woman, but she was strict: he didn’t get to play until his work was done, no questions and no exceptions.

That’s not to say he didn’t have fun. After studying and finishing his chores, Arturo passed the time dreaming about the annual Carnival, hanging out with his girlfriend Monique (she attended a neighboring all girls’ school), and riding motorcycles on Antigua’s long dirt trails with his cousins. The bikes offered them independence, a way to get around the island without their parents. Yusef and Raymond had a Yamaha Big Wheel, with fat knobby tires, three-gears, and no clutch, which was the first bike Arturo ever rode. He loved the euphoric feeling of freedom he experienced alongside the adrenaline that came from riding fast. As the boys grew older, that bike was exchanged for a CR80, then a 125, and eventually a 500. They were riding road bikes by his last couple years of secondary school (Antigua’s version of high school). Arturo also loved to draw—mainly graffiti and various figures. He drew every paper sign that needed to be made for his family or in school.  

Arturo had visited his mother in Brooklyn a number of times over his summer breaks from school. She’d had another son, named Anwar, when Arturo was eight, and the two had become fast friends during his visits. When Arturo graduated in 1993, he knew exactly where he was headed. Soon after arriving, the culture shock began and lasted for the greater part of the next couple years. Arturo doesn’t remember anything notable about the five tattoos he accumulated that summer at a shop called Kaleidoscope in lower Manhattan, but don’t ask him what they mean. He got them back when you didn’t get tattoos because they “meant something.”

He soon left the city for a design university in Alleghany County where he began his degree in graphic arts—which means upstate New York is where he first encountered snow and what people mean by the word “freezing.” He spent time hovered over the washing machines in the dorms, trying to put his mother’s crash course in doing laundry to good use. He ate more Ramen noodles than he cares to remember, and would look askance at his friends when they tried to coax him out of the library to party. How many times did he need to remind them that he was paying for his entire education? It was the mid-90s, when AOL was a big deal, and he laughs now when he talks about studying HTML and Photoshop.

It took him five years to graduate, and as soon as he did, he bought his first motorcycle, a Suzuki GSXR—the kind of bike that’s meant to be noticed. It was 1998—the year of the Jonesboro shooting, Michael Jordan’s last game as a Chicago Bull, and Monica Lewinsky’s blue dress. Arturo says he went “a little bit nuts.” He took to racing in Loudon, New Hampshire and Bridgehampton, on Long Island. One day, the guy who had painted his bike asked to use it for a photo shoot at the Sound Factory Bar. Arturo came to the photo shoot, and the club’s owner asked him to ride his bike—through the club. Arturo blinked a few times, shrugged, and hopped on. He left that night with his bike, and a job as a bartender. So at age 22, in the early hours of the morning in the city that never sleeps, he started slinging cocktails under bright lights behind the bar of one of the hottest clubs in Manhattan, music playing at decibels that made his stomach vibrate. He only worked Friday and Saturday nights, pulling in a minimum $1,000 cash. “I thought, Who’s better than me?” he says. “Nobody.”

One of Arturo’s co-workers began telling him about Muay Thai, a combat sport that originated in Thailand. Arturo had grown up fighting with his cousins and he was intrigued. He soon started training three to four hours a day, six days a week, at various gyms around the city. He fell in love immediately. He particularly appreciated that Muay Thai wasn’t a team sport, that it was just him against one other person, and the best person always won. All the aphorisms that summarized the lessons he soon learned through fighting aligned perfectly with the way he approached life, and with what his grandmother had taught him: The work you put in is the work you’re going to get out. You are in control of your destiny. For every action, there’s a reaction. Get out there and execute, or bad things are going to happen. No excuses. The punches that hurt the most are the ones you don’t see coming.

A kru (Muay Thai coach or teacher) he was training with soon approached him and invited him to start fighting. Arturo didn’t hesitate. His first “smoker” was at Chok Sabai Gym, a historic Muay Thai gym in Manhattan. Arturo says he was nervous as hell, his stomach aflutter with butterflies. His headgear drowned out the sound of the audience and when the bell rang, he began pacing around his opponent. He still remembers that first time getting punched in the face—all his nerves melted away. “People can look good hitting pads,” he explains, “but shit changes when you get punched in the face.” For Arturo, shit changed for the better. He was undefeated throughout his amateur career. He also participated in a few amateur MMA fights out of Club Abyss in New Jersey (the cage stuff), and won each of those.

He spent a couple years fighting at Friday Night Fights and more-or-less being paid to party like it was (wait for it...) 1999. He took trips to UltraFest in Miami that turned into staying up for a week straight, and cruised to the desert for Burning Man in a well-stocked Winnebago. But soon, he was closing in on 30, and he started to feel like maybe it was time to grow up. He’d met a lot of people from his vantage point behind the bar at the Sound Factory, and one of his regulars, a car wholesaler, invited him to put his degree to use and become the Internet Manager of Bay Ridge Automotive Group. Arturo said yes.

As he often did in new situations, he spent time quietly assessing how he could add value, and then mastered his role quickly. It was now early 2000, and Arturo knew the Internet was beyond “You’ve got mail!” and had become a more nimble tool for doing business. He started by installing a number of computers at the Lexus dealership where he was stationed, and was soon soliciting and conducting business almost entirely by email. He sent dozens of photos to his clients, facilitating the sale of around 30 cars each month. Lexus was so successful that Arturo was asked to visit dealerships in the city in order to install computers and teach their employees how to use the Internet. He stayed in this job for almost seven years but eventually left out of frustration with how much the company was making off his work, without compensating him in a way he thought was appropriate.

Arturo had been dating a bartender he’d met at a club in the city for a few years, and his whole world shifted when their daughter, Chloe, was born in 2006. But it wasn’t just Chloe’s birth that changed things—when she was 18 months old, for various reasons, Arturo suddenly became a single parent. His own father had vanished after the divorce, and Arturo was determined not to make the same mistake. He and Anwar decided to get a three-bedroom apartment together, and they both began raising Chloe. Arturo has no complaints about the fact that he had to give up his daily training regimen and nights out for the new responsibility. He’ll tell you the easy truth that she’s the best thing that ever happened to him.

Since he’d recently left his job, he made the choice not to work as a single father for a little over a year. He’d always been frugal and saved money, so the uninterrupted time became a sweet gift as he hung out with his toddler. But one day, after yet another phone call from a friend, or friend of a friend, who asked him to help them train, he decided it was time to make some money off his experience and intelligence as an athlete. Anwar and their mother helped with Chloe as Arturo began training private clients. He was soon working 160 personal training sessions a month out of a 24-Hour Fitness in Manhattan, sometimes leaving at 7am and not returning home until 10pm. It was hard work but just as he’d loved developing relationships with regulars at the Sound Factory or customers at the car dealership, he loved helping his clients change their lives through exercise.

He figured he would train people for a short time before moving on to something else. But then, in 2011, he found CrossFit, and soon after, CrossFit South Brooklyn. He earned his Level 1 shortly after finishing Foundations at a gym in Manhattan (ask him how he feels about the fact that the gym made him take the classes), and trained at a few gyms before poking around online in February 2012 to see if there was a gym closer to where he was living on Bond Street. “Get outta here—Degraw Street?” he said to himself. “Between 3rd and 4th Avenue?” As soon as he walked in, he immediately felt comfortable and welcomed. He quickly became one of the gym’s top athletes, and David approached him a few months later and told him they were looking for a new coach. Arturo easily said yes. (It’s worth mentioning that he knew he was home after the Anniversary Party in 2012.)

Of course, nothing is ever only one thing. Despite the serendipitous shift in his career, the last few years have not been easy. Two years ago, Arturo traveled back to Antigua for the first time in 20 years to join the rest of his family in saying goodbye to his grandmother. Then, last July, his life changed again, in the middle of another trip to Antigua, when a cousin called to tell him that Anwar had died in a car accident. Arturo had seen his grandmother’s death coming, but his brother’s death was one of those punches he couldn’t have anticipated, and he struggles to wrap his mind around it. He will be 40 years old this fall—still a son, and in the thick of being a father. He doesn’t fight anymore and while he continues to carry the lessons that crystallized for him in the ring, those lessons have been tempered a bit by life’s mystery, and unfairness. And yet: You get out of things what you put in. No excuses.

Parting Shots
How he likes his eggs: over medium
Favorite lift: snatch
Something he’d like CFSBK members to know: He doesn’t purposely match his outfits.  

Five Year NFL Combine Averages ESPN
The Toxins That Threaten Our Brains The Atlantic