05 Dec 2013
On Saturday CJ will be competing in her fist competition. It’s a tough one for even an experienced CrossFit athlete. It didn’t even faze her when I explained what it was 4 weeks ago. Battle of The Sexes at CrossFit Lando would make a strong man think twice but not CJ!
CJ needs no introduction! She is one awesome athlete who in less then a year has made amazing progress in CrossFit. I remember the first night she showed up at CrossFit Boston. It was last February. We were programmed to do 11 .1 WOD from the open games because we were preparing for the 2013 Open Games.
The WOD: 10 AMRAP ~ 30 Double Unders & 15 Power Snatches #65 Females
First time CJ had been in a CrossFit box. Coach had her go through the power snatch movement and within 20 minutes CJ hit 75# with form that put my 45 pounds to shame. Let’s fast forward to the end of the WOD~ CJ crushed it and asked if she could join. I told her we were preparing for the Open Games and she asked what it was all about. I explained a bit about CrossFit and how in 3 weeks we would all be competing against other boxes across the world. Her eyes lit up and she exclaimed: “I can compete in this.”
And compete she did. What she didn’t know, she struggled through without a complaint. Over the summer she went home and joined CrossFit Downtown Atlanta to continue her training. Now that school is back in session she’s back here whittling away at the unknowns. I can’t say she has goats because everything that comes her way she tackles with the determination of a champion.
CJ’s a competitor bottom line but what I think is most wonderful about her is her sincerity. When I first met her last year I didn’t realize how young she was. As the Regional Games were approaching I asked her if she wanted to go with us. Still not knowing the reach of the CrossFit competitions she asked what the Regional games were. I explained and she said, “I definitely want to go but I have to ask my parents.” I asked for clarification and she told me she was 17 and had to go back home for the summer. She would have to ask her parents if she could change her ticket to stay for an extra weekend.
Of course curiosity got the best of me and I couldn’t help but to ask her about her life. She is truly an amazing young lady. In her junior year of high school she was bored so she studied for the SATs and took them. She applied to Harvard and was accepted. I asked her if her guidance counselor helped her and she said, “No, he wouldn’t have let me to apply.” Girls got gumption!
CJ is a pre-med student at Harvard in her second year. Her brother is also a student at Harvard studying neuroscience. She has played a variety of sports and obviously enjoys competition. For 8 years she was ranked in the Junior Olympics in archery. Remember that domain we call accuracy! She’s got that one covered.
It’s her first competition and it doesn’t even matter if she does well. I know she will be putting on a great show of athleticism and poise. I look forward to watching her over the years as she matures into a better athlete and someday a doctor. A role model for all girls~ COUGER!
CrossFit Lando~ Battle Of The Sexes ~ WOBURN!! Competition starts at 9 a.m.
02 Dec 2013
It’s that time of year again when the parties, socializing, and shopping are starting to add up. Lucky you belong to one awesome community of athletes and you are going to get through the month of December. Our In-BOX throw down on December 14th “Jingle All The Way” is going to be a blast and that evening we get to share a glass of champagne and toast to the holidays at Daedalus Restaurant & Bar. It’s been a heck of a year here. Mishaps, craziness and awesome training all rolled up into one heaping mound we call community. As I look back I can’t help but to see a future that’s going to be even better at CrossFit Boston.
The New Year is just a around the corner and perhaps you have started to think about resolutions you want to truly keep this year. It’s not too early to start planning and I think you will be interested in our TRANSFORMATION CHALLENGE. We kept it purposely short in duration (6 weeks) because we are not looking to make you starve for 3 months, or train yourself into an injury. We believe CrossFit is a life style and choice and are here to support you as you make the necessary changes to become as healthy as possible.
The Transformation Challenge will start on January 4th and end on February 15th. Here are all the details you need to get started:
Saturday, December 7th COME TO THE TRANSFORMATION CHALLENGE INFORMATION MEETING!!
From 12-1 p.m.
- Pick Up Your Information Packet
- Sign Up For Hydrostatic Measurement
Saturday, January 4th GET TESTED
Hydrostatic Body Fat Testing! Say what? Yup, that’s right. We have an expert in the field of body composition testing coming here to test you on Saturday, January 4th. Hydrostatic (underwater) Composition Testing is considered the gold standard of body fat testing to which all other methods still compare. Whether your goal is to lose or gain, this system gives you the most accurate percentages of your body’s fat and muscle composition.
Yes, you will need a swimming suit to get tested! You will be dunked underwater so bring a towel and your sense of humor. We are going to start scheduling for the Hydrostatic Measurement on Saturday, December 7th after the INFORMATION MEETING.
Transformation Challenge Fitness WOD: This is the fitness WOD we will use to measure your fitness performance. It will also take place on Saturday, January 4th.
6-Weeks To A Healthier You
For 6 weeks you will keep track of six different areas of health. We have made it easy for you to make these changes and incorporate them into your daily life. We are helping you start healthy habits. These changes will be added up daily in a point system. Trust me, it’s not going to take much time to calculate!
There are 6 components to the Transformation Challenge to consider when adding up your points:
During the 6 weeks of the transformation challenge you will be given cards to keep track of your eating, exercise and life style choices. Each week these points will be recorded on the white board.
The Hydrostatic Measurement is limited to 30 spots. There is a December 27th deadline for CrossFit Boston members who would like to sign up. We are participating in this challenge with North Shore CrossFit and Mountain Strength CrossFit! Some of their members may need to come here to get tested so don’t hesitate to sign up!
The Transformation Challenge Packages:
- Hydrostatic Measurement
- Weekly Score Card Check In With A Coach
- Pre & Post Challenge Fitness Assessment
- Circumference Measurement (Waist & Hip Ratio)
- Weekly Score Card Check In With A Coach
- Pre & Post Challenge Fitness Assessment
Need more support around food? Alex Black, owner of Wicked Good Nutrition and our nutrition expert, is putting together a package for you to purchase from her. It will include nutrition analysis and weekly check in. For more details come to the meeting on Saturday, December 7th at noon or contact her directly. We are lucky to have a nutritionist with her knowledge. Taking 6 weeks to make some life altering changes may take more support! Check out her website: WICKED GOOD NUTRITION
The End is The New Beginning
Hydrostatic Measurement will be redone, the Transformation WOD will also be retested and the final points calculated.
There will be 2 winners for this challenge. One man and one woman will take it all. The winners are based on three measurements: body composition, points, and challenge WOD improvement. Awesome prizes for both winners of this Transformation Challenge!
01 Dec 2013
Let’s start with a regret. I wish I had gotten off my ass and joined CrossFit Boston a year ago.
Fitness-wise, it had been a rough year since I got out of the Marines and started at HBS (Harvard Business School). Not that I wasn’t working out at all, but what I was doing wasn’t much more effective then doing nothing. Going to the gym, throwing around some weights, going for a run every once in a while. I had a couple of friends who had joined CrossFit Boston, but I figured they were wasting their money. I thought I didn’t need a class to get in shape. I was a Marine, I could take care of myself.
Well I was completely wrong. I had put on weight, lost muscle, lost aerobic ability and my overall fitness was degraded. I did need CrossFit. The good news is that I finally got off my ass and joined. The instructors, the competitive team atmosphere and the CrossFit workouts have been completely worth it. It’s been 2 months since I’ve joined the gym. I’ve still got a long way to go till I get to where I want to be, but I’m already hitting PRs. Not 2 month PRs but liftime PRs in lifts that I’d been doing my whole life (even the bench press, which it’s not like I was ignoring before). And then there are all those things that I never had done before. I had no idea how to do a clean, snatch or overhead squat before I joined. I really didn’t even have the mobility to do the snatch or overhead squat. Not saying when I do them now they are always pretty, but I can get them done. And then of course there are all the other levels of fitness CrossFit throws at you.
Every day I both dread and can’t wait to get to CrossFit Boston to do the next WOD. I’m hooked.
26 Nov 2013
Snatch High Pull + Snatch 602X3 70 4X3 75 4X3
C&J 70 2X2 75 X2 80 3X2
BS 70 X3 80 X3 85 X3 90 4X2 LOW BAR
Clean Deadlift 80 X2 90 X2 100 3X2 ( % of your clean, slow deliberate movement, mimic clean)
Upright Row to Press 4X8
Hypers 3X10 Abs 3X20
Power Snatch 50 2X3 60 X3 70 4X3
Power Clean to Push Press 60 2X3 70 X3 80 3X2
Front Squat: (70%/5)2, (80%/4)2, (90%/3)2
Hypers 3X10 Abs 3X20
24 Nov 2013
WE NEED 4 MEN TO COMPLETE 2 MORE TEAMS!
Time: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Location: North Shore CrossFit @ 121 Liberty Street, Danvers MA
We have 6 teams so far! We are in need of 4 men who want to show of their incredible talents.
If you have not registered your team do it soon or it will close out. Each team needs a team leader to register them. Here are step by step instructions to make it easy!
1. Ask Coach G2 or Tina if you need a team.
2. If you have been designated a team then have your team leader register your team. Here is the link: Not Your Average Joes
3. Come up with a Team Name–It’s easy! I looked at Evan’s t-shirt and now we are the Biscuits & Gravy team!
4. When you have registered your team have your team leader email Tara from North Shore CrossFit with your team name, team mates names, and t shirt sizes. [email protected]
5. Split the cost! It’s $140 per team.
6. We will have a car pool list when the date gets closer!
Hope that helps!!
21 Nov 2013
At the heart of any community I believe is family. Here at CrossFit Boston family’s are celebrated and welcomed with open arms. I love when new babies are born and parents bring the bundle of joy into the gym for all to see and admire. In the past year I’ve been able to hold Sawyer while mom and dad hit the platforms for a quick squatting round. When we have our hero WODs parents such as Michelle and Ziyad bring their daughters and they recently met Jason Sagers daughters! Jay and his wife Germaine always bring Jackson Paul. They brought the little guy for a fundraiser we had for the 3Point Foundation, an awesome program for low income kids.
These are our future CrossFitters but also equally important to our community is that parents feel welcomed with their children.
I recently came across some good business advice from Ben Bergeron owner of CrossFit New England. It is no doubt that CFNE runs one of the most successful boxes in the world. I think what he has to say about building an Emotional Bank Account is extremely important in fostering community. This Video ~ Emotional Bank ~ explains in no fancy way why each member is important to the community. For me it resonates because the community aspect of CrossFit is what drew me to be a coach. If you go to any CFNE events Ben and his wife Heather always have their children with them. At the regionals this year between events I saw Heather chasing after her 1 year old son. It made me smile. She was in the top 10 competing for a spot to the Games but took time to play with her son. Her daughter Maya is always at the competitions and now competing in them as well.
Neal and his wife Jess are due in about 6 weeks. And soon after Adam and Kelly Voci’s baby–can’t wait to hold that bundle of joy. Our community is growing with lots of new members but also with little people who in two shakes of a lambs tail will be scampering about at Paleo brunches!
*Top Right Corner–Neal and Abigail at an Olympic lifting seminar at CrossFit Great Barrington
**Left–Ziyad and Michelle’s daughters, Nadia and Zayna
***Featured Top Image–Finn’s daughter June Mary
11 Nov 2013
CrossFit is a sport I believe everyone can participate in. I especially see this in the kid athletes of CrossFit Boston. Every new kid I have the opportunity to coach brings to our community a new perspective. Ashley is a young lady who at 10 years old is already competing in triathlons and is a competitive swimmer. My job is to help her learn the movements of the lifts and in the process love CrossFit. I consider my efforts a success when kids can’t wait for practice. Ashley is the athlete of the month because she is always an avid learner and excited to try every single movement I throw her way. Power cleans, heaving snatch balance and rope climbs are just the beginning! She also got on the board for the 7 AMRAP Burpee challenge…not easy for the most experienced CrossFit athlete. She didn’t stop once!
This is Ashley’s story….
This is my story and how I came to like CrossFit. Every year I spend my summer in Italy and when I came back to Boston this year in September 2013 my parents told me they met Tina, a great CrossFit coach and asked me if I was interested to meet her. I agreed and the next day I went to CrossFit Boston.
I see Tina twice a week and love doing the WODs she makes me do. When I learn new exercises, Tina calls me “Speedy Gonzalez” because I tend to speed ahead. She also teases me because she says my feet are wobbly (due to swimming) and I am learning to keep them rooted to the ground! Since I started in September, I have been working with Tina to become a better athlete and I feel I am on the right path. I run faster and I am learning to use weights. My favorite exercise is the rope climbing. I can get all the way up to the ceiling panels on the ropes. I love CrossFit, I think everyone should try it (my father first)!
07 Nov 2013
On Saturday we have two awesome athletes competing at the CrossFit Southie Showdown. Let’s all go and show our support!
Perhaps you don’t know Carla. She’s fairly new to the gym. I met her last year during the Open Games when she came in to get her WOD done and scored by Neal. She was in Boston on business. We were all amazed by her strength. She relocated in the early fall and joined CrossFit Boston. Her smile is beautiful and she is a wonderful person. You wouldn’t know she’s such an amazing athlete because she’s incredibly humble but every Saturday morning you can see her pushing the sled up and down the street. I think she has even talked CJ into joining her. One of the members has a muscle crush on her…he said her muscle swagger is amazing to watch! If you haven’t had a chance to WOD it out with Carla come cheer her on! We will make an announcement on Facebook about her heat times…stay tuned!
Carla recently turned in a Fran time of 3:42.
The next athlete needs little introduction. He’s our very own favorite Boston Symphony Orchestra trumpet player…Coach Tito! He has been a long time member of the CrossFit Boston family. Since 2010 he has been learning under the tutelage of Neal. In the spring of 2012 he started coaching. He plays full time in the Boston Symphony Orchestra and loves to wear his bright orange NERD socks! He’s also a writer for the Boston Pops.
Clean & Jerk 215
Back Squat 300
Front Squat 265
All PRs he plans on breaking this year!
06 Nov 2013
Top 10 Reasons To Do A CrossFit Throwdown:
10. You’re a sadist and like to see people suffer in pain; except you will be suffering with them…which brings us to 9.
9. You’re a masochist and like to put yourself through pain; except it’s not the kind of pain that makes you antisocial. So we have to disregard 9 and 10. CrossFit is most definitely social and it’s a great place to meet some awesome people…sorry I gave away 8.
8. It’s an incredibly social event where you meet all kinds of people, from all walks of life.
7. You may even meet the person of your dreams—most likely not, I’m a romantic so I had to add it.
6. But you will make new friends. I met Liz Mellen the owner of CrossFit Medusa last year at CrossFit Southie. In the mile run I caught her and passed her only to have her catch me and pass me as we neared the finish. This got us talking afterwards and now I consider her to be a dear friend. Pretty damn awesome!
5. You will connect on a deeper level with the athletes from your box. As they cheer you on you will feel your community pride. It’s a great feeling and it’s what makes CrossFit so frickin great. Community!
4. You will test out new skills and conquer PRs that have been taunting you for some time.
3. You will fail a rep or a lift and find out that the world still goes round and round. Your community will still be standing cheering you on and backing you up. In other words, it’s ok to fail. In fact it’s what makes us better in the end.
2. You will do better then you think. Yes, you will. I go to competitions without knowing how I will do and I’m always amazed that I got through it, kept my cool under pressure and had a blast.
1. You will feel like a beastly person who can get through anything. Resiliency is a quality I believe CrossFit teaches. Bad things happen in life and bad people happen…you have to keep going. You have to know you have a community of people who back you. If you put in an honest days work great things will happen. There will be foolish people who creep in to your surrounding but because you have high standards of integrity and character you will be fine.
All that from one little competition! Who would have thought you could get so much? So, come on, try it. If I can do it, you can. Here are a few competitions to consider competing in or going to cheer on your fellow athletes:
CrossFit Southie Showdown
November 9th and 10th
It’s this weekend and we have Carla Bezold and Coach Tito competing. It’s a fun one to watch!
Go to the following site for more details: CrossFit Southie Showdown
CrossFit Lando –Battle of The Sexes
This is for the serious competitor! They have standards you have to meet in order to compete: Clean and Jerk (Grace weight), Toes to Bar, Handstand Pushups (Regionals “box” standard), Pullups, KB Swings 53/35, Double Unders, Squat Snatch (115/75, low reps)
We have a few CrossFit Boston athletes attending this one. So far we have Nigel and CJ signing up! If you think you can hang with this group then consider signing up.
Go to the following site to register and let Coach G2 know you are participating!
North Shore CrossFit ~ Not Your Average Joes Team Competition
This one is a must because North Shore CrossFit is a great place, with awesome people. We went out there this summer and had a great time.
Join North Shore CrossFit for our 3rd Annual “Not Your Average Joe’s” Team Competition! This is a FUN event that is strategically programmed, allowing most “average joe” crossfitters to participate! Bring your A-Game for this challenging competition!
Teams of 4: 2 Males/2 Females (team members must train at the same gym)
Three workouts! Basic standards to be announced, and WODs will be announced 24 hours prior to the event!
Registration link will be active this weekend!
PRIZES AWARDED TO THE TOP 3 TEAMS!!!
CrossFit Boston ~ In House Throwdown
December 14 ~ Saturday
This is our Holiday Throwdown. Instead of morning classes we will have heats that go off at 9 am. Scaled divisions first, followed by our Rx athletes. You can bring a friend from another box if you want to get a little more social.
CrossFit Boston ~ Renegade Rowing Crash Bs Testing!
This event will follow the regular scheduled classes for any one interested in testing their skills for the Crash B’s. Coach Pat will be running the show. Members from other boxes will be participating.
And did I mention yet that there is something BIG, very BIG coming to CrossFit Boston on January 4th. It will be announced in the next few weeks…stay tuned!
That’s all for now athletes. And remember your mobility everyday. It makes the difference, keeps away the injuries and helps restore your youthful muscles to a supple state!
30 Oct 2013
By October of my first year in Boston I’d begun to feel somewhat underwhelmed by the changes college had brought. The binge drinking and pizza eating provided no satisfaction. I struggled with the distinct sense that I had not yet found my place. While my dorm mates seemed to thrive on the insular culture of group living, I felt stifled. I couldn’t have articulated what was missing, but looking back I was longing for a sense of community and purpose. During this time I was following CrossFit’s main site and doing their workouts independently, mixing in weightlifting with my existing running routine. While the workouts were challenging I was bored, lonely and increasingly over-trained as I continued to increase the volume in search of greater gains (because more is always better, right?).
Finally, at the end of October I decided to give CrossFit Boston a call. At my uncle’s urging I called Neal and scheduled my intro session. I remember walking into the gym and immediately feeling that I had made an egregious error by agreeing to this. My thought was that they would immediately know that I didn’t belong. Someone would take one look at me and smell my fear and that would be it: exile to the island of the unskilled and untrained. To my great relief the opposite was the case- I was welcomed in with open arms and more positivity than I can begin to explain. I was hooked immediately, so thrilled to be learning new things and to once again be in an environment that was both supportive and competitive. I remember well, Jon Gilson in my face, stridently informing me that I had more in me, that I didn’t need to put the bar down yet. And honestly, everything was really hard.
When I began I had no concept of where my body was in space and absolutely zero ability to integrate coaches cues into my performance of movements. I flailed. I struggled. I hit myself in the face with a barbell more than once. My arms were so weak they were useless. I finished last every single day but just kept showing up. I’d wake up at 5:30 four days a week to make it into the 7:00am class at CFB and hustle back to BU for 9:00am lecture. As the months passed I steadily improved. I gained muscle and learned for the first time how to use my upper body. I learned to lift things and reveled in the newfound skill.
But the most noteworthy change wasn’t in my strength, endurance or coordination. The big transformation was all in my head. CrossFit provided the basis for a complete shift in how I viewed my body, my value and myself. Not long after joining I found myself thinking not in terms of inches or sizes but rather in terms of pounds lifted and sprints run. With this new metric for assessment, my thoughts began to change. I berated myself less often for the size of my thighs and thought instead of how heavy I could squat and how far I could jump. My confidence soared even as I had to buy larger jeans to accommodate my new muscular quads. I cannot possibly overstate what a huge change in perspective this was. Today I’m strong and it shows. My shoulders, which I once would have called ugly and too big, are my favorite body part. I relish the fact that I am strong, I look strong, I feel strong. It’s awesome.
I’ll share one other anecdote about my CrossFit experience before I wrap this up. A few years ago, after a flare-up of an old injury, I started to focus on Oly because it was one of the few things that didn’t bother my back. I took a step back from CrossFit and focused my efforts on learning the complex lifts. Over the months the movements began to click and I was thrilled by the progress I made. I put the work in, drilled my form relentlessly and eventually became proficient in the lifts that had previously been the absolute bane of my existence. I went on to compete at lifting meets, winning my weight class on a few occasions. What was previously a major weakness is now something that I identify as one of my greatest strengths. Again, cue major shift in perspective. Olympic lifting allowed me to understand that excellence isn’t something that just happens to people. Skill and strength are the hard-won result of dedication, attainable if you are truly willing to pursue them. I feel so lucky to have grown up at CFB, having had the opportunity to learn so much about sport and about life. It’s been an incredible gift.
So here’s a big thank you. Thank you to CFB for helping me to lay the foundation for a healthy, happy and strong adulthood. Thank you to Neal for creating a gym where respect, compassion and encouragement are paramount. Thank you to the coaches for inspiring excellence. Thank you to the whole CFB community for being my friends, my training partners and my acquired family. While I’m excited to begin a new chapter in Denver, my next gym Front Range CrossFit has some serious shoes to fill. I love you fiercely and am so fortunate to call you all friends.