Ben here, and today I want to discuss having a sense of PURPOSE!
So Strap in and Hang on, because we are about to get all sorts of “moto” up in here!
When I was discharged from the military in July of 2006, I was high on the fact that I was able to walk my sister down the aisle on her wedding day (a goal that I had set, when I was still in the hospital)! It gave me such a sense of accomplishment since the Doctors told me that I would not be able to because of my injuries. However, I was not about to let that stop me, so I charged forward till I accomplished my goal!
Fast forward a couple months and I found myself not only without a goal, but also with the feeling of worthlessness and lingering depression. Couple that with my nightmares and anxiety and I was a mess. I honestly didn’t know what to do. I did drink quite a bit to numb the embarrassment and pain that I was experiencing in my life.
This living aimlessly continued for about three years. Then one day, I heard a guy speaking about goals as a way to guide your life, and I decided I would give it a try. So, my first goal I set was go to the gym 5 times a week. So I set up a “plan of attack,” of making time and went after my goal. The sense of accomplishment and purpose I got in return was incredible. It was so rewarding I decided to apply it other aspects of my life, bother professional and personal.
As I progressed I found that setting little goals were nice, but I found myself losing momentum. What I found was I was setting goals I KNEW I could reach, and not setting a goal to reach something that was outside my comfort zone and seems a little crazy! So I decided to set HUGE goals! Goals that will require me to step outside of my comfort zone, learn more and really make me stretch and push myself as a person and that is what I want to challenge you guys to do.
I want you to set some small goals, but also a HUGE goal, something that requires you to “stretch” and to get a little uncomfortable. My big goal is by December I want to give a motivational speech to a big corporation. Does it scare me? YES!!!! In order for me to grow, I must step outside my comfort zone, as do you too!! I dare you to set a goal and COMMIT to it!!!!!! Write it down and review it every day, closing your eyes and visioning it every day! Then you will believe that it is POSSIBLE!!!!!!
I hope you guys are have an outstanding day!!! Holla back!!!
Here is a quote to think about, when you are setting your goals.
The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark.
Just a reminder, we still have a few of the discounted 10-3 student memberships available for $60! And to accommodate those folks (and everyone else), we’ll be adding some new classes toward the end of next week.
Beginning 8/15, we’ll be adding a class at 1030 am and a Foundations class at 1 pm, Monday - Friday.
Question for you all: would anyone be interested in opening up a morning session for the Olympic Weightlifting class? Please comment below or contact Ken if you would be up for it.
We would like to offer a hearty congratulations to Sara, competing in the World Police and Fire Games in Northern Ireland over the weekend. She won the Hammer Throw Gold Medal with a WPFG World Record throw! She’ll compete later this week with her brother in the Toughest Competitor Alive competition. We’ll keep you updated as we hear results.
Member's Only Weightlifting Meet and Potluck 8/17/13
We needed an excuse to have a barbecue, and everyone likes to pick up heavy things! So, we are going to have a mock weightlifting meet on Saturday, August 17th. We’ll plan to start about 11, but final schedule will depend on the number of competitors.
This marks the end of the first 4 week cycle for the Olympic Weightlifting class, so it will be a perfect opportunity to establish new 1 RMs before we start our next cycle.
We also have people who have expressed an interest in competing in Olympic Weightlifting. This event will give you an opportunity to experience a competition. We will be following USAW rules.
Please note: this is a FUN event! You DO NOT need to be actively competing (or even interested in competing) to register!
Come out and compete (and win prizes!)! Come out and support your friends! Come on out and grill something!
Competition is limited to CFSW members, but anyone is welcome to join us to watch and BBQ.
$10 to compete, free to spectate. Registration is online only, deadline is 8/15. To register, click here. You must be be signed into your Front Desk profile to be able to register. It is listed under the ‘Plans and Passes’ tab.
Call or contact us with questions or for further details.
BRING A DISH FOR THE POTLUCK!! (Or just scrounge off of your friends…)
Some of you have already guessed the identity of our mystery man from a few days ago. Ben and his lovely wife trained with us previously (before moving to the far side of the world), and Ben has coached off and on at CFSW for the last few years. We’re pleased to let you know that he’ll be back coaching, starting next week.
For those who haven’t had the pleasure, I’ll allow Ben to introduce himself:
I am a proud Marine, and I served in Ramadi, Iraq in 2005-06’. During my tour, a Humvee I was riding in, was struck by a roadside bomb killing two of my fellow Marines and leaving me with a right-leg amputation. Needless to say, the incident changed my life forever.
When I was first discharged I was lost. I wasn’t sure what to do with my life; so I floated around from job to job, and drank A LOT to help me cope with insecurity and my loss.
In 2009, I moved to Seattle, WA and that’s where I was introduced to Crossfit Northwest. The community was surprisingly receptive and supportive to me participating in the programs. I loved it! So I kept going back, and found that it was helping me cope with my nightmares and emotional symptoms associated with PTSD. It also rekindled the love I had for lifting weights that I discovered when I was in Iraq.
When I moved down to Tempe, AZ in 2010, I found another great community of people at CrossFit Southwest. What surprised me was the way that people here were also motivated and inspired by my story of recovery. I loved the fact I could inspire people to live better and overcome obstacles.
As a result, I wanted to increase my knowledge about the science behind lifting so I could improve my coaching abilities. Over the last couple years I have aquired several fitness certifications; such as, Crossfit level 1, and USAW Olympic Weightlifting
I look forward to blasting steel with you and assisting you in reaching your goals!
The link in the email that was sent out is not working correctly, please use the one below, or copy and paste from the email.
We’re upgrading our business systems to a member management system called Front Desk. This includes our website and the online tools that are available for you to manage your schedule at CFSW. With Front Desk you can log in from your smartphone or computer to see your account details, update credit card information, sign our electronic waiver, and manage how you want to be notified about appointments, classes, courses, and events.
You’ll receive a verification email with another link to the site to set your password.
You’ll receive a second email asking you to sign our electronic waiver. Electronic waivers are an integrated component of our new system, which is a huge improvement on our old paper waivers. Unfortunately, we can’t transfer your current waiver.
3. If your membership is automatically charged, you will need to update your method of payment.
If you have any problems confirming your account or are unsure of the email address we have on file for you, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We’re excited about these changes—especially that the tools are mobile so you can check your schedule of services at CFSW and manage your membership anywhere, anytime.
Please let us know how you like our new Front Desk, and thank you!
We are pleased to introduce a new student membership option:
With the budget-conscious student in mind, we will be offering a limited number of “10 - 3” memberships at a discounted rate! For $60/month, you will be able to attend any weekday (Monday-Friday) class from 10 am - 3 pm.
Beginning on August 15th, among the new classes we will be offering will be classes at 10 am, and 1 pm, and the plan is to begin offering additional classes in September (subject to demand).
These memberships will become available on Monday, July 21st, and will activate on August 15th. We are only offering 40 of these memberships, on a first come, first served basis.
Keep an eye out for further information to be posted Monday!
We’ll be starting an Olympic Weightlifting-specific class time next week. Initially, we’ll be meeting from 5 - 7(?) pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and 930-1130 am on Saturdays. We may end up extending that to 730 or 8 pm in the future. The plan would be to expand that schedule to Monday-Thursday as interest warrants.
If you are interested in attending, please talk to one of us either next time you’re in the gym, or email@example.com.
This is an open time slot, intended to be for those of you who would like to work specifically on improving your Olympic lifts. There will be a workout provided, or you can bring your own, and you will be able to show up and receive instruction and supervision. You should be at least moderately proficient at the Olympic lifts (e.g., this is not intended to be a ‘learn how to’ class).
Many thanks to everyone that came by Saturday to help move the entire gym in about 4 hours!
Our new address is 1848 E. University Dr (University just east of McClintock). We share a wall with Napa Auto Parts on one side, and our friends at Gustavo Dantas BJJ on the other. We hope that you are as excited about the move as we are.
We will be holding classes as normal beginning Monday, 6/3, but please bear with us over the next few weeks as we continue to settle in. It’s likely to be a summer-long process, but we’ll be able to train around a lot of the activity.
We will have no changes to the schedule for Saturday May 25. Monday (Memorial Day) we will have an open gym from 9 am -11 am only. There will be a workout provided, or you may choose to work on something of your choosing. Please note that we will be closing down at 11 am, so plan accordingly.
Pardon the lack of recent postings, things have been a bit stressful lately, and I’ve been pulled in many directions. We’ve been a bit better about the Facebook page, so please check us out there.
What have we been up to? Well, among other things, I am pleased to Officially Announce that we are moving!
We’ll be located at 1848 E. Unversity Drive, Just east of McClintock on University—right next to Napa Auto Parts and GD JIu Jitsu.
We officially take possession today, and we’re hoping to complete the build out and have things ready to move in by the weekend of the 18th of May. Keep an eye out, we’ll keep you posted as the timeline develops.
Here are some results from a few of the workouts last week or two.
Heavy Back squats, followed by a quick metcon (1:00 Pullups, 1:00 rest, 5:00 AMRAP 10 pushups, 20 situps, 30 Double Unders, 1:00 rest, 1:00 pullups)
800 m run, 20 HSPU, 800 m run, 20 HSPU, 800 m run
Weighted Pullups to a heavy single, followed by 21-15-9 reps for time of HSPU and Toes to Bar.
Heavy triples of Deadlifts and Presses, followed by double unders and burpees.
Snatch work, followed by 800 m run, 50 situps, 25 pushups, 400 m run, 50 situps, 25 pushups.
And Friday’s partner workout. 400 m run with a med ball, 40 each partner wall ball, 40 each medicine ball situp (pass to partner over 24” box), 400 m run with med ball, 40 total partner pullups, 40 “high five” pushups, 400 m run with med ball, 40 partner burpees (one partner holds plank, other partner jumps over them at the top of the burpee), 400 m run with ball. Everything must be completed with your partner (no running ahead, etc.)
There’s a reason that I quote and refer to and invoke the name of Dan John with regularity. This captures it as well as anything he’s written.
Reasonableness Let’s just get this out first: I believe that a Reasonable Way of Eating and a Reasonable Training model trump insanity all the time. So, in my last few workshops, I have gone to the whiteboard and scribbled illegibly in my scrawl that earned “D’s” in handwriting at St. Veronica’s School and asked these questions:
What’s a tough workout? Dozens of hands go up, dozens of answers. I truly enjoy this part as we swim from totally random training programs to sports (“Run a Marathon!”) to a multitude of DVD programs and the like. There are programs that can kill and programs that have from 16-50% injury rates in six weeks. Remember, this is a roomful of fitness pros and we still all think we need to kill you to make progress.
What’s a reasonable workout? A few hands go up, a few shy answers like “Even Easier Strength” I discuss “hand waving” again and again in my writings. It is this side-to-side handshaking wiggle we do with both hands followed by our mouths saying “You know” and our shoulders shrugging. With reasonable, sadly, we seem to NOT know. I argue that reasonable workouts cover all the basic human movements in a repeatable repetition scheme and appropriate load while providing plenty of time and energy for corrective work in any and all areas. Reasonable seems repeatable.
What’s a tough diet or way of eating? Most hands go up with everything from pure fasting, protein drink only diets to sheer lunacy. I had a girlfriend who had a three-day diet. Day One she ate seven eggs. Only. That was it for the whole day. Day Two, she had seven oranges and Day Three was seven bananas. She would lose seven pounds doing this. That, my friends, is a tough diet. I would probably find a three-day fast easier as my blood sugar will go crazy on the fruit days and turn me ravenous. Oh, on Day Five? She put on nine pounds.
What’s a reasonable diet or way of eating? Crickets. Nothing. Blank uncomfortable stares. As a classroom teacher of over 34 years, my one fear has always been passing gas out loud during a lecture. As the group stares back at me, I have one of two thoughts: either I farted or we have a problem. I checked. It wasn’t me. Seriously, some of the biggest names in the fitness industry won’t raise their hands and tell me what a reasonable way of eating is in this age of one million diets. Years ago, at the Olympic Training Center, we were told to focus on these three things: Protein Veggies Clear Water
Is there anything stunning there? Later, Robb Wolf summarized the most complex eating program (dozens of books by the same author promising all kinds of things and the problem is always that you don’t do it right) in the world with these three memorable lines: More Protein More Fiber More Fish Oil Please note: I have stolen both of these concepts and I now claim them as my own. Remember, the first time I say something: I am quoting someone. The second time I say something :I say “My good friend, fill in the name, always says….” The third time I say something, I say “As I always say…” This is what I remember from my ethics class on the topic of Intellectual Property. As I argued in Mass Made Simple, I think we know how to eat: Honestly, seriously, you don’t know what to do about food? Here is an idea: Eat like an adult. Stop eating fast food, stop eating kid’s cereal, knock it off with all the sweets and comfort foods whenever your favorite show is not on when you want it on, ease up on the snacking and— don’t act like you don’t know this— eat vegetables and fruits more. Really, how difficult is this? Stop with the whining. Stop with the excuses. Act like an adult and stop eating like a television commercial. Grow up. Now, let’s get back to the point: Eat like an adult!
[Sparked by a discussion in the gym, regarding the CrossFit Open workouts. Just some stream of consciousness, and perhaps a more complete expression of where I stand on the subject of CrossFit Competitions]
Another CrosFit Games Open Workout is upon us. Are 17 minutes of Snatches and Burpees healthy? Should you sacrifice form for a faster time, or one more rep? My personal take on it is this:
If you want to do the Open workouts, by all means do it. It’s a cultural experience for many people, to be doing the same thing as literally thousands of other people who share their interest. It’s fun to see how you stack up against the rest of the CrossFit Nation, and it’s a way for you to test your mental and physical capacity.
But decide: Are you doing CrossFit as a Sport, or are you doing it to be healthier and get in shape?
Much has been made of the potential for injury in CrossFit. I’ve beaten that drum a time or two myself. I’ll wager a fair amount that I’ve been around CrossFit longer than just about any (or all) of you reading this, and I know people who have sustained injuries through their participation in CrossFit.
But, I know a lot more who have been injured playing soccer. I personally have had knee and ankle reconstructive surgery, fractured an ankle and several toes, torn a hamstring, separated a shoulder, suffered more sprains, strains, and contusions than I can count and at least 1 concussion (that I can remember), all from playing soccer. Oh, and a torn labrum and rotator cuff, and another shoulder separation from playing flag football.
And yet, I’ve never discouraged someone from playing soccer or flag football.
Injuries are an accepted part of Sport, and I would argue that as the level of Sports performance increases, that risk of injury also increases. Athletes routinely put themselves into situations where they can be injured, or worse, and we applaud them for it. ”Playing hurt” is a badge of honor for many.
And that, I think, is what needs to be acknowledged—if you approach CrossFit as a Sport, you have to accept the potential for repercussions. In the quest for a faster time, or a heavier weight, or more reps, it’s possible to push yourself to the point of injury.
This is where common sense and a dose of reality need to come into play. I’ve said this before , but if you aren’t physically capable of performing the movements with appropriate range of motion and control, you probably shouldn’t be attempting to do them quickly and with intentionally compromised form. It makes no sense from a ‘health’ standpoint.
In the end, it should be looked at as a risk/reward relationship. There will always be a risk of injury anytime you move. Some activities increase the potential for injury—although these are often the same activities that provide the greatest potential for reward. The key is to establish basic competencies and strength before pushing boundaries.
To paraphrase a conversation I had with Ido: Don’t be afraid of something because it might hurt you. Ask yourself, ‘what can I do to prepare myself so that it won’t hurt me?’
Most of the people who train here at CFSW are not planning to compete in CrossFit competitions. They want to look better, feel better, and move better. That said, one of the hallmarks of CrossFit is and always has been the competitive aspect of the workouts. In many ways, competition is the driving force behind CrossFit’s growth and popularity, and it can’t be removed without fundamentally changing things.
How do you reconcile the two? Understand the difference between training and competition. Realize that even professional athletes don’t compete every day. Understand the basics of how to move effectively and safely, build a foundation of skill and capacity, and then make decisions based on an assessment of risk/reward. Recognize where you can charge forward and where you need to scale back.
By all means, COMPETE. Never quit, never take the easy way out. But also don’t intentionally take the path to injury.
Those of you who are Facebook followers of our page will notice that we post a lot of things there that don’t make it to the blog. Articles, videos, etc., that we find interesting or just want to share. Go ahead, take a look!
We did kind of a twist on the “Annie are you ok?” team workout and Fight Gone Better. 5 stations: wall ball, power clean (75#/55#), box jumps, push press, row (for calories), in a 21/15/9 setup.
Each team member starts at a different station, and completes 21 reps (or calories). Teams rotate when everyone is finished at their respective stations. Once you finish your station, you get to rest until it is time to rotate. Once everyone has completed all 5 stations at 21 reps, you would do the same thing for 15 and 9 reps, respectively. Score was total time to complete.
And I came across the video of the first “Annie are you ok?”. It was done at a 2006 CrossFit certification in the original Santa Cruz HQ gym. You’ll notice current CF Games stud and workout namesake Annie Sakamoto prominently featured. And if you look closely at around the 0:57 mark, you’ll notice a handsome youngster, with nary a grey hair to be seen starting the burpees…
Feeling like your fitness is lacking direction? Interested in learning new strategies to achieve your goals?
Come to the CFSW Goal Setting workshop Tuesday, February 19th, 630-800 pm.
We will cover basic principles of effective goal setting and provide worksheets and reference materials to help you develop a plan of action to achieve your goals. These are life skills, and can be applied not only to fitness and nutrition, but also school, business, or just personal development.
Please preregister by 7 pm on Monday, 2/18, to ensure that we have enough materials and space. Call us at 480.329.8484, or email to firstname.lastname@example.org