Clean | Deadlift | WOD 3.22.15

Fitness: Hang (Knee) Clean 1RM
Performance: Hip Clean 1RM

Establish a new 1 Rep Max. Performance: watch this video to familiarize yourself with the hip clean.

Post loads to comments.


Fitness: 3RM
Establish a new 3 Rep Max.
Performance: 1RM
Establish a new 1 Rep Max. 

Post loads to comments.

Tabata Row (for Meters)

Rest four minutes.

Tabata Box Jumps

Post total meters and reps to comments.

Mike B. taking a big breath before his snatch last weekend at the Mock Oly meet

News and Notes 

  • CRUSH WEEK STARTS TOMORROW. Get psyched, and get Zen
  • Kids Club is canceled today, and will resume next week. Email Janelle [at] with any questions. 
  • Happy birthday, Janelle B., Doug M., and Jenna J.! 

Head Over Heels: An Oscar-Nominated Short About the Struggles of an Upside-Down Relationship


Open Workout 15.4


Front Squat: 3-3-3-3-3
Establish a new 3 Rep Max.

Post loads to comments.

AMRAP 8 Minutes:
3 Rounds of,
6 Russian Kettlebell Swings 72/53
3 Push-Ups
3 Rounds of,
12 Russian Kettlebell Swings
6 Push-Ups
3 Rounds of,
18 Russian Kettlebell Swings
9 Push-Ups
Etc., adding 6 kettlebell swings and 3 push-ups every 3 rounds.

Post reps and Rx to comments.  


Open Workout 15.4 

AMRAP 8 Minutes:
3 handstand push-ups
3 cleans 185/125
6 handstand push-ups
3 cleans
9 handstand push-ups
3 cleans
12 handstand push-ups
6 cleans
15 handstand push-ups
6 cleans
18 handstand push-ups
6 cleans
21 handstand push-ups
9 cleans
Etc., adding 3 reps to the handstand push-up each round, and 3 reps to the clean every 3 rounds.

Post reps to comments.

SCALED Open Workout 15.4

AMRAP 8 Minutes: 
10 Push Press 95/65
10 Cleans 117/75

Post reps to comments.

Coach David warming up his snatch last Saturday

News and Notes

  • Come watch CFSBK's Competition Team take on 15.4! 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!
  • Kids Club is canceled tomorrow (3/22), and will resume on March 29th. Email Janelle [at] with any questions. 
  • 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. 

Pre-Teen Girls Shredding Metallica's "Enter Sandman"  
39 People Doing Passive-Aggressive Way Better Than You Distractify 
Timber Creek High's Savannah Braud is SI's March H.S. Athlete of the Month Sports Illustrated   


Rest Day

CrossFit HQ recently released coverage of the 2014 CrossFit Games, and we love the Triple Three event. The workout: For Time, Row 3000m, 300 Double-Unders, Run 3 Miles. The video starts around 7:25. We're still not over seeing Rich Froning walk for part of the run.

News and Notes

  • CFSBK's Movie Night, featuring Fight Club, is TONIGHT after Open Gym at 8pm. Bring your snacks (i.e., takeout from Dinosaur BBQ), drinks, lounge chairs, bean bag chairs, whatever, and come hang! 
  • For the coders among us in the CFSBK community: Remember to get your team together for "Get Fit or Be Hacking" on May 2nd. Register on CrowdRise here. Questions? Send them to Rob at runderwood5+getfit [at]
  • Happy birthday, Uzef G.!

Winter's Articles, Interviews, and Media in Review

It's only March, but 2015 has already been filled with fresh articles from our coaches and staff. In case you missed any of them, we've included this list for your Friday reading pleasure (starting with the latest): 

Chasing Rx: When to Scale and When to Go Heavier Jess Fox and David Osorio 
CFSBK's Competition Team: Open Workout 15.3 Kate Reece
Heavy Thoughts David Osorio 
Stomachs and Eyeballs: The End of the LFPB Challenge Chris Fox
How to Bring CrossFit to Work, Literally Kate Reece
Warming Up a Lift Noah Abbott
Introducing a CFSBK Poet: Jynne Dilling Martin
More Thoughts On Being an Athlete Who Doesn’t Eat Meat Whitney Hubbard
Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail: Planning Your Lifts Before and During a Cycle Noah Abbott
Taking your Gainz Outside the Box Noah Abbott
All The Good Reps, and Only the Good Reps Chris Fox
Using CrossFit for Weight Loss Chris Fox

We also met February’s Athlete of the Month, Colleen Meagher, and the following Behind the Desk-ers:

Camille C.
Janelle B.
Josh S. 
Charlie N.
Sarah M.

We will be hosting an OutWOD again soona CrossFit competition for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender athletes and their allies! Which LGBT organization/s do you like and think the workout should benefit?


Snatch | WOD 3.19.15

FitnessHang Snatch 1RM
Performance: Hip Snatch 1RM
Watch this video to familiarize yourself with the hip snatch. The bar stays in the hips. Note the dynamic nature of the lift, that there is no pause in the hang but an aggressive and immediate extension. 

For both versions of the lift, catch as low as your mobility allows. Don't start to catch higher as the weight gets heavier, get comfy down there! No pressing out. 

Post loads to comments.

At 0:00: Run 1 Mile (at about 85% pace)
At 10:00: Row 2,000m (at about 85% pace)
These should be challenging but not maximal efforts. You should have some rest between the run and the row. 

Post times to comments.

Sarah M. squatting heavy at Iron Maidens

Behind the Desk: Sarah M.

You all love the Underneath the Hoodie series and now we’ve brought back the Behind the Desk series, about our beloved and much appreciated Front Desk staff. These CrossFitters take care of the important duties of checking in our members, handling walk-ins, tidying up after classes, and so many other things that it would take forever to list them. They are the glue that holds this gym together.

A few weeks ago, it was Charlie. And now (drum roll, please), introducing...

Name (and any nicknames): Sarah Mount, Mount, sarahdactyl

Where were you born and where did you grow up: Born in Buffalo, NY and raised between Rochester, NY and Cleveland, OH.  

How long have you been CrossFitting, and how did you arrive at CFSBK? Did Foundations in May of 2014 and started coming regularly around August 2014. I was introduced to CFSBK by my dear, sweet friend Megan Dolce. We worked together at the lululemon in Brooklyn and she was always doing CrossFit all the time and I was intrigued/left out/wanted to know what it was all about. Needless to say, I got hooked pretty quick! I get really competitive with myself and have really enjoyed watching my body change while learning about/improving at the lifts. Even though there are a few CrossFit boxes closer to my apartment, I feel really rooted in this community and I can't picture myself anywhere else.

What are you up to when you're not at 597 Degraw Street: I'm a singer/songwriter so that's what I'm doing mainly, or trying to do anyway. I'm writing/recording/rehearsing and then also nannying for two pretty cool three-year-olds in Prospect Heights! 

First album that you loved: No Doubt's Tragic Kingdom, closely followed by Alanis Morissette's Jagged Little Pill 

"Ask me about that time I...": moved to Spain for a year to pursue a masters, having never left the US before. And then the actual five times I was robbed while living there.

Favorite restaurant or bar in Brooklyn: Barboncino in Crown Heights is dope, but I end up drinking at Boat Bar a lot somehow also?  

Favorite and least favorite lift: My favorite is probably the back squat. Least favorite used to be the snatch but I've been working on it and I kind of dig it now. Can I say my least favorite is nothing? I like all the things. 

Any Front Desk PSAs you'd like to share? The Front Desk staff works really hard and likes snacks. So you can bring us snacks and any other presents if you want to. Kidddding, just keep being a rad community and don't make a mess at the gym!  

Catching Up With CFSBK Classifieds and Travel Gym Recommendations

  • Coach JB's other place of employment, Ithaka S+R, a non-profit research and consulting firm that focuses on higher education, is looking to fill three research positions. Check them out here.
  • Don't forget about Stella Z.'s choir, which will be performing on Thursday, March 26 at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine on the Upper West Side. Tickets and full details available here.
  • If you work for a business that has any documentation needs (or you currently keep all your passwords in an Excel file marked "passwords" and don't want to become the next Sony Pictures), check out Todd C.'s recent post about how his company can help.
  • Bob S. wrote about his recent experience at Lutece CrossFit Paris, and Dave P. wrote about CrossFit Jogo in Bellingham, WA

Have a service you want to share with CFSBK's community, or a need you think one of us could meet? Or stuff you want to give away/animals in need of adoption/tickets for sale/etc.? Post in CFSBK's Classifieds! Our members have found apartments, pets, and jobs through our forum. 

Visited a new affiliate while traveling recently, or forgot to write one up from past travels? Post a recommendation (or friendly warning) now!

This Viral GIF is Destroying Expectations About Women's Strength
Dave Castro Q&A About the CrossFit Games on Reddit
Insane Russian Gymnastics Routine 


Back Squat | 3.18.15

Fitness: 3-3-3-3-3
Establish a new 3 Rep Max. Use spotters
Performance: 1-1-1-1-1 
Establish a new 1 Rep Max. Use spotters. 

Post loads to comments.

Partner WOD
For Time:
100 Pull-Ups
150 Thrusters 75/55
200 Kettlebell Swings 53/35
Break the work up as desired between partners. Have a plan but be flexible with it so you and your partner  don't slow down.

Post time and Rx to comments.

Kate B. getting set to snatch at the CFSBK Oly meet last Sunday 

News and Notes

  • Muscle & Fitness Hers wrote an article about Iron Maidens, called "The Iron Maidens of Brooklyn," and interviewed Margie, Coach Jess, and Serene K. Check it out here!
  • Happy birthday, Front Desk Superstar Camillionaire! (Read her Behind the Desk interview here.)
  • Happy birthday to CFSBK Blog Maven, photog and managing editor, Kate R!


What: Movie Night, featuring cult favorite Fight Club
When: Friday, March 20th, after Open Gym at 8pm

Bring your snacks (i.e., ice cream sandwiches from Bierkraft), drinks, lounge chairs, bean bag chairs, whatever, and come hang! Just remember... The first rule of Fight Club is: you do not talk about Fight Club… But feel free to talk about watching Fight Club this Friday. That's totally okay.

2015 CrossFit Open Leaderboard: Team CFSBK

The results for 15.1, 15.1a, and 15.2 are in, and here are our team's leaders! Congrats to everyone who has been pushing themselves the last couple weeks with two tough workouts. We can't wait to see what's on deck this Thursday...


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

1. Coach MeLo
2. Coach K HarpZ
3. Coach Lady Fox
4. Coach Whitney
5. Lauren B. 
6. Ellie M. 
7. Steph M.
8. Steph P. 
9. Kate R. 
10. Lauren S. 

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


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

Diagnosis Radiolab
The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly of CrossFit Tim Ferriss 


Rest Day

Rio tackling 15.3's muscle-ups on Saturday

Chasing Rx: When To Scale and When To Go Heavier

An interview with David Osorio and Jess Fox, edited by Kate Reece

If you don’t know why workouts are named after women, Greg Glassman, the founder and President of CrossFit, explained it like this: “I thought that anything that left you flat on your back, looking up at the sky asking ‘What just happened to me?’ deserved a female’s name. Workouts are just like storms, they wreak havoc on towns.” 

Regardless of whether you welcome or abhor that feeling of being wrecked (particularly when it doesn’t happen in your bedroom), we all know what it’s like to approach a nasty WOD from the mindset of wanting it to be over before it even starts. But sometimes, the desire to cruise through a workout can cause us to take shortcuts, maybe not go as heavy as we could, and ultimately sacrifice our long-term strength goals on the altar of feeling like a beast in the moment. Hopefully, we all do want to get stronger. In that case, it's important to realize that the lifting segments of group classes are not your only opportunities to achieve your goal. You should aim to get stronger through the conditioning portion of class as well.

Maintaining excellent technique should always be your priority, but if you want to close in on the Rx-ed loads for a WOD, you need to gradually increase your base numbers—which might involve surrendering a bit of the metabolic stimulus of some workouts. ("Rx" refers to the prescribed, standard weights for a workout, or those scary numbers written after each weighted movement on the blog and whiteboard.) Simply put: you need to lift heavier and go slower so that you can eventually lift heavier and go faster. 

I sat down (i.e. emailed a lot) with Coach David and Coach Jess to ask them everything you wanted to know (but were too scared to ask) about chasing Rx in workouts. The bottom line: don't be complacent about the weights you choose for any given workout. Getting stronger is a process. Here are David and Jess's experiences with exactly that.

CFSBK: When did you start Rx-ing all the WODs? What did your journey look like to get there?

David: When I started CrossFit, I was self-teaching myself the movements, so I did what I could and then practiced the movements that I didn't know how to do yet. It took me about a year before I was doing almost everything Rx-ed. I definitely was biasing a heavier weight and slower times in the beginning, which helped me develop the requisite strength to be able to eventually move the Rx-ed weights faster. I still occasionally scale some of the weightlifting loads in WODs when appropriate 

Jess: I'd say the first things I could Rx fairly quickly were workouts with deadlifts, double-unders, box jumps, and kettlebell swings. I knew my road to Rx-ing weights in the Olympic lifts would take some time, and honestly we weren't doing as much of those when I started. So, I chose to target kipping pull-ups as my first big goal, since they tend to come up in so many WODs—and what girl doesn't want to do pull-ups! My road to getting them meant practicing them EVERY time I was in the gym. I started out with thick green-band but over the course of a few months, I was able to get my rhythm down enough to get a few unassisted kipping pull-ups in spurts. They weren't consistent enough though so I always resorted back to the band for workouts.  

However, that changed when I visited my other “home” CrossFit in Ohio. The WOD was “Cindy” and although I knew that I could get a few rounds Rx-ed, I still set up a band. During the workout, when I started to slow down on pull-ups, I reached for the band. The coach there stopped me and just told me it was okay to move a little slower. Sure, I didn't get a high number of rounds but it allowed me to continue to work on that skill and it gave me a baseline for “Cindy” Rx-ed. After that experience, I got rid of the band. That didn't mean I did every pull-up workout Rx-ed right away though. Until I got better at them, scaled volume was my friend. 

CFSBK: If I'm moving fast and getting a good workout in the WODs, why should I worry about what weight I'm doing? 

David: The balancing act between performing workouts with their intended metabolic stimulus, versus going heavier or sticking to a calisthenics version that slows you down considerably, can be somewhat nuanced. Ideally, you want to be able to keep moving at a somewhat reasonable pace. If you're shuffling your feet, looking at the pull-up bar for a minute, you're probably not getting the most out of your time on either end. But if you're not at the Rx-ed weights and want to start pushing toward them, you'll just have to accept that you're going to be slower and the workout probably won't be as spicy. In my opinion, that's fine. Recently, I told a member that would have rather her go with a heavier dumbbell and get capped versus going lighter and getting a good time. As long as you can perform about 3/4 of the workout before getting capped, you should be fine. If you want to get stronger in the WODs, you're always going to have to bias a little heavier and slower, technique permitting. 

Jess: As CrossFitters, we're all a little Type A and want to move fast through workouts. However, our training should include different stimuli and heavier weights—higher skilled movements can provide that. As I mentioned before, it took a little nudging from coaches, and a little/lot of swallowing my WOD pride to not scale those pull-ups in “Cindy.” Looking back though, I'm so grateful for that intervention. Not just because it was my first Rx-ed “Cindy,” but because I didn't really realize that I had the strength and skill to do it. I see this a lot with push-ups in workouts as well. Though I see many of you work your strict push-ups like a boss in our warm-ups and even start a workout with strict pushups, as soon as the going gets tough, the knees drop down. Sometimes you just have to gut it out (provided your movement is technically sound), knowing that you might need to scale volume and accepting that you might be the last person to finish.   

CFSBK: How do I know when to go heavier during WODs?

David: When you feel like you "own" a weight that is below Rx-ed, then it's time to bump it up. Don't get complacent with certain loads. For example, if you're a guy and you always do 65-pound thrusters, even if it still feels difficult, you need to start gradually adding five to 10 pounds to push your strength and comfort level with the movement and load. If you always swing the 16 kg kettlebell, start voyaging out to heavier territory. As long as you feel confident in your technique, which might mean going a bit slower or breaking up reps more, then the weights or your modification should feel heavy.

Jess: This is where logging your workouts comes into play. Early on in your CrossFit life, you will and should start lighter than you think. Use the warm-up time to pick a load that you know you'll be able to move consistently well through. Then, take note of how that felt in your logbook so that you know what to aim for next time. Also, listen to the advice your coaches give you. I think we do a pretty good job of talking about the intention of the workout and providing scaling options or percentage markers to help guide you in determining an appropriate weight. If it's ever not clear, just ask! 

CFSBK: If I want to set a goal to get to Rx or heavier weights (and I know I should!), what should my battle plan or strategy be?

David: As Jess mentioned, make sure you're logging and writing down both qualitative and quantitative data! You'll never remember to go heavier on that barbell if you can't refer back to previous experiences. Focus on writing notes specific to how heavy things felt and if you think you could have gone a bit heavier and kept your technique together. You'll have to dip into loads or movements that intimidate you a little if you want to get better.

Jess: Be consistent in your practice. If it's barbell lifts, then aim to make each rep at lighter weights perfect and slowly increase the weights from week to week or from WOD to WOD.  If you did the past three thruster workouts at 75 pounds and flew through them, then go for 80 next time. If you're training a skill, then lay out a specific plan to help you get there.  Also, tell a buddy and have them help keep you accountable, or better yet, have them join you! Note though, that skill is singular. Don't be the person that has a list of 10 skillz and can never really devote enough time to any one of them. 

CFSBK: Any parting thoughts?

David: Use your coaches as a resource! We want you to improve and always will let you know how a movement looks and whether you should scale up or back down. Let us know you're trying to get stronger and we can give you some thoughts about how to modify your workout intelligently.

Jess: Know that for most of us, this stuff doesn't come naturally and that some of us might never hit Rx-ed weights. We’re now in the CrossFit Open season, so now you can compare your WOD scores to people around the world. But just remember that ultimately you're competing with yourself. In the beginning, focus on establishing your baseline. Keep a good logbook, set realistic goals, set time aside to practice, and then use your training to beat yourself. 

(An important caveat: Rx is not an advisable goal for all athletes. It can serve as a point of reference to make the process of choosing your weights easier, and enables our coaches to help you scale appropriately at the whiteboard.) 

Kevin Ogar 15.3 (1 rep)
Kara Webb 15.3 (624 reps) 


Bench Press | WOD 3.16.15

Fitness: 3-3-3-3-3
Establish a new 3 Rep Max. Use spotters
Performance: 1-1-1-1-1 
Establish a new 1 Rep Max. Use spotters. 

Post loads to comments.

10 Rounds, AMRAP:
:30 Burpees
:30 Rest

Post highest and lowest reps to comments.

Molly and Tucker came to cheer on their dad, Coach Fox, yesterday. Congrats to all the lifters that participated in Frankie Murray's Olympic Lifting Program Mock Oly Meet! Photos from the snatching portion of the event are up in Flickr.

News and Notes

Community News

  • Congrats to Samir C., who just released his new book, Eye on Cricket: Reflections on the Great Game. Check it out!
  • Rachel H. is our resident handstand whiz! Check out this cool video she posted on Instagram!
  • Stella Z.'s choir, the Oratorio Society of New York, will be performing the Verdi Requiem with the Manhattan School of Music chorus and orchestra on Thursday, March 26 at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine on the Upper West Side. It's an epic piece of music and a really gorgeous space, and she would love it if some SBKers showed up! Tickets and full details available here.
  • Happy birthday, Lauren B.!

The Time You Have (in JellyBeans)
The Australian Meat Pie, with CFSBKer and Owner of Sheep Station, Jason C. Tasting Table