Due to unforeseen circumstances the gym will be closed for the Noon class and will re-open for the afternoon classes. Sorry for any inconvenience. Have an awesome afternoon!
18 Dec / 2013
Performing an appropriate warmup for the workout that is set out each day can make or break a performance. Below is the warmup we use fairly consistently in classes at CrossFit Boston and at the Renegade Rowing Club. It’s a good 10min warmup to focus on control, connection, and recovering to strength. Checkout how slow the Renegade Rowing Club approaches the catch in the beginning. Executing this drill with control will allow you to really focus on putting technique changes into effect and hitting that catch with good timing and connection.
Please share what you do for a warmup when rowing is involved in the workout. What is your focus?
Renegade Rowing Club Warmup:
1min – 1/2 Legs Only
1min – Full Legs Only
1min – Legs and Body Only
1min – Full Stroke
1min – Pause @1/2 Slide Every Stroke
5min – 10 Strokes On/ 10 Strokes Off, 15 On/15 Off, 20 On/20 Off
For most people, a jar of multivitamins on your countertop is a marker of a healthy person. Of course, I have always been convinced that you can get all the nutrients you need from food if you eat the right foods. Looks like science might be proving my point. An article yesterday from Science Daily reported on 2 articles published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, which found that taking a daily vitamin/mineral supplement really has no clear benefit for most healthy people.
What does this mean?
This means you don’t need to spend $17.99 a month for vitamins at CVS. It means vitamins and minerals do the most for your body when they come from food.
Where do I get my vitamins and minerals?
From food, duh. These foods in particular…
- Vitamin A – orange and red colored vegetables like red and orange bell pepper, sweet potato, carrots, pumpkin, cantaloupe, apricots, tomatoes, etc as well as broccoli, ricotta cheese, and black eyed peas.
- B Vitamins (riboflavin, niacin, etc) – green leafy vegetables, fortified grains (but the vegetables are a way better option).
- Vitamin B12 – animal products, including meat, dairy, and eggs.
- Folate – beef liver, green vegetables including spinach, asparagus. brussel sprouts,and lettuce, and avocado.
- Vitamin C – strawberries, citrus fruits, kiwi, broccoli, brussel sprouts
- Vitamin D – fatty fish like swordfish, salmon, and tuna, fortified OJ, fortified milk, sardines, and egg (found in the yolk).
- Vitamin E – sunflower seeds, almond, peanut butter, safflower oil, and boiled spinach and broccoli.
- Vitamin K – green leafy vegetables; the darker the vegetable, the more vitamin K.
- Iron – red meat, dark green leafy vegetables like spinach and kale,
When Should I take a vitamin/mineral supplement?
This study found that in healthy people, daily vitamin and mineral supplements aren’t really necessary. However, it IS a good idea to take a vitamin or mineral supplement in some cases. Some of these include:
- If you have a vitamin deficiency. If the deficiency is low enough, you may be able to correct it by taking a multivitamin that includes that nutrient. If you are very deficient in a vitamin, your doctor may recommend more aggressive supplementation (for example, if you have severe iron deficiency anemia). Of course, while you are correcting the deficiency with a supplement, you will also want to increase your intake of foods high in that nutrient so you don’t become deficient again later on.
- If you are at high risk for vitamin deficiency. Vegans – and sometimes vegetarians – need to supplement B12, because it is only found in animal products, while female athletes are at a higher risk for iron deficiency and northerners (that’s us!) are at high risk of vitamin D deficiency during the winter months due to minimal sunlight exposure.
- If you are pregnant. Since research has very clearly demonstrated the benefits of folate for preventing spina bifida and other neurological disorders in newborns, mothers are encouraged to take folate while they are pregnant.
If you’d like to read more for yourself, here’s the article from Science Daily.
What are your thoughts on multivitamin/mineral supplements?
17 Dec / 2013
The holidays are here and I’m sure as you are reading this you are elbow deep in hot chocolate and and Christmas cookies styled to appear as your favorite CrossFit Boston Coach.
Good, enjoy it.
I just read a blog by a very well respected and very well intentioned fitness expert who was equating the individuals lack of ability to maintain their six pack over the holidays to a lack of self-value.
CrossFit, health and fitness is a big part of our world but so are our families, friends and traditions. So over the next couple of weeks don’t go out of your way to drink a whole gallon of egg nog in one sitting but let yourself feel okay about knocking back some holiday favorites with your favorite people. The grind will be back soon enough and so will your beach body.
13 Dec / 2013
FIRE IT UP! FIRE IT UP!
Whew, lots of 13′s today. Lucky 13 for sure here at CFB. Another week of solid effort, kicking ass, and excelling in general. Way to go and keep it up.
Some questions came up this week regarding the prescription and how to approach the workouts. I want to address this for everyone so that all has a better plan. Keep in mind it is not absolute. There are many ways to go about this. What I am offering is ONE way.
First begin with MECHANICS. You first need to look at how well you move for EACH movement. Where are there opportunities? What can you rock out like crazy? If you have poor thoracic and shoulder mobility, then don’t think about adding heavy weight to a snatch! You are only going to get yourself injured. Pushing through with really bad form is NOT being BADASS, its being UNINTELLIGENT. Remember, this is about long term success. Bottom line scale back the load you are using to first prioritize moving better. The same can be said for volume as well. Reduce the exposure in a stressful environment until you have developed proper mechanics. While performing 100 pull ups in a WOD may sound really cool, you probably would have gotten a better training effect with 30-40. This is what you are being taught during Fundamentals Training. If you joined the gym pre-fundamentals, then set up a time with a coach to go through some private sessions. You will gain a great deal of insight from the one on one attention.
The second part goes hand in hand with MECHANICS and that is CONSISTENCY. Once you demonstrate competence in a particular movement, what is the next step? Becoming consistently better at that movement. Demonstrate that you have really developed the hardware for the movement pattern. If you are training in class 3-4 times per week you may not get regular exposure to certain movements that you are struggling with. This means you need to take it upon yourself and get some extra PRACTICE on your own time. This could be as simple as 10 minutes before or after class time a couple days during the week. It doesn’t mean you have to spend hours and hours each and every day.
Last you are finally ready to add INTENSITY. Weight, volume, speed, etc. These are all components of intensity and it is where the magic of CrossFit occurs. Don’t rush to this phase. You will still be partaking in excellent training and development while you focus on the first two steps while setting the table for a long term path of health and fitness.
There are quite a few changes to the schedule as we go into the final weeks of 2013. Please take some time to familiarize yourself with them to avoid confusion and frustration.
Saturday 12/14 – Holiday Throwdown & Holiday Party at Daedulus
There will be NO regular classes. The throwdown begins at 9am with 30 minute heats with the final heat ending at 12pm. Later that evening we will be gathering at Daedulus from 6-9. Come socialize, enjoy some fine drinks, and celebrate another year in the books with the CrossFit Boston Community. The gathering will continue past 9pm to whatever destinations the crowd chooses.
Sunday 12/15 – Class Canceled
Tuesday 12/24 – 8:30AM – 10AM One WOD with Coach Tito. Come with your festive spirit and rock it out! Prize for best costume determined by all in attendance. Extra consideration for those dressed as elves!
Wednesday 12/25 – CLOSED
Thursday 12/26 – CLOSED
Friday 12/27 – Limited Schedule: 7am, 8am, 4:30pm, 5:30pm The gym will be closed in between 9am and 4pm.
Saturday 12/28 – Normal schedule
Sunday 12/29 – Normal schedule
Monday 12/30 – Normal schedule
Tuesday 12/31 – Limited Schedule: 6am, 7am, 12pm, & 4:30pm
Wednesday 1/1/14 – CLOSED
Thursday 1/2 – Resume regular schedule with a 7:30pm class
NEXT WEEK’S PROGRAMMING
Saturday – 12/14
Holiday Throwdown WOD TBA
Sunday – 12/15
Monday – 12/16
1. Position 1 Clean – 6×2
2. AMRAP 12
30 Double Unders
15 Overhead squats, 95/65
7 Toe 2 bar
Tuesday – 12/17
1. Deadlift – 3×5
2. Tabata – 8×20/10
Push Press 75/55
Alternate the movements, scoring both.
Wednesday – 12/18
1. EMOM 20
ODD – 2 Snatch @ 70%
EVEN – 8 Pull-ups
2. Dip Holds – 8×20/10
ODD – Hold at the top
EVEN – Hold at the bottom
Thursday – 12/19
1. Heaving Snatch Balance – 12 minutes to find your max for the day
2. 3 x AMRAP 3
10 Box jumps, 20″
10 Russian Swings, 32/24
Rest 3 minutes between each AMRAP
Friday – 12/20
1. Push Press – 7×2
Three Rounds for time of:
30 Cleans, 95#
Run 800 meters
Saturday – 12/21
1. Row 30 Rounds for max distance
:30 Active recovery
2a. Strict Pull ups – 3 x max
2b. Dips – 3 x max
11 Dec / 2013
From time to time it can be beneficial to look at yourself on camera. No we don’t care about the aesthetics or the fashion. We’re looking to gain feedback and a mental picture. We’re looking for just one or two cues that might give us a smoother, more powerful stroke. What’s going right? What’s going wrong? What can we do better?
You should be asking yourself, “What do I look like now? How do I move now? What could use some extra focus and improvement next time?” Don’t dwell on to many things at a time, just find one or two things that might make your life on the erg or in the boat a little better. Go work on them. Then reassess in a couple of weeks.
The Renegade Rowing Club has agreed to help everyone by taking a look at their strokes. If you’d like feedback similar to this, post a 20 second clip of you rowing to YouTube and share it with us in the comments of this post. I’ll do my best to give you a couple of things to work on!
For each of the following videos I’ll be ranking each rower on their posture, control, and connection. I’ll use a five point scale where 1 = poor and 5 = perfect. When dealing with posture we’re looking for the torso to be stacked and strong at all times. When talking about control we are looking at the smoothness of the recovery and how the seat moves toward the catch. Does it rush forward for the next stroke? Is there control in the last few inches of the slide to change direction without pushing the boat backwards? Last and most important, connection, are the seat and handle connected and moving together into and out of the catch as if connected by a belt.
Take a look and share what you might focus on next time you row!
Posture: 3, Control: 3, Connection: 2 – video
Feedback: Nice job getting the body over. Don’t let the seat stop at the catch. Be ready to push with the legs the second you hit the catch and keep the seat and hands connected.
Posture: 3, Control: 3, Connection: 4 – video
Feedback: Nice horizontal hands. Don’t let the handle pause at the finish. Focus on quicker hands away as if there were opposing magnets on the handle and your chest trying to push those hands away out of the finish.
Posture: 4, Control: 3, Connection: 3 – video
Feedback: Great posture and nice job getting the body over. Try not to be so rigid and don’t break the elbows as you initiate the drive. Relax a little on the recovery and make everything smooth.
Posture: 3, Control: 2, Connection: 3 – video
Feedback: Nice job getting the arms extended and ready for the catch. Try to not be so robotic and rigid at the finish. Focus on quick and smooth hands away. The handle should always be moving.
Posture: 4, Control: 3, Connection: 2 – video
Feedback: Good posture and nice horizontal hands. Don’t let the shoulders and torso reach for more at the catch. Focus on staying connected as you approach the catch. See if you can get the body over and find that reach earlier in the recovery, before you get to half slide.
Posture: 3, Control: 4, Connection: 2 – video
Feedback: Great work getting your body over on the recovery and getting prepared by half slide. Don’t let your posture go as you approach the catch. Focus on bringing the handle with you as you push the knees down. The first inch or two of the drive you are shooting the slide, so keep a big chest and solid abs/back as you push.
Posture: 3, Control: 3, Connection: 2 – video
Nice power and push on the drive. Try to keep your hands on one level plain and don’t let them drop coming into the catch. Focus on pointing the toes as you finish and then getting the proper sequence of arms away first, bodies over, and then knees come up during the recovery. Everything blends, but that’s the order of firing in terms of sequence.
On Saturday I talked about the nutrition piece of the Transformation Challenge, but if you missed it, here’s a recap.
Qualities of a Healthy Diet
1. Unprocessed foods. Eat what came from nature – vegetables, fruits, quality meat and dairy (I’ll elaborate on that in #3), nuts and seeds, beans, etc. Avoid things that come in a box like processed wheat, crackers, cookies, chips, sweets, etc.
2. Dominance of fruits and vegetables. Fruits and vegetables are high in nutrients (vitamins, minerals, fiber) but low in calories and mostly low in carbohydrates (except for the starchy ones). That means they are unlikely to cause sharp rises in blood glucose, leaving you with stable energy levels.
For the challenge, all common vegetables are included except for white potatoes – but sweet potatoes, butternut squash, pumpkin, etc are all OK. We’re keeping white potatoes off the OK list because sometimes it can be easy to eat them in place of green vegetables, and they are higher on the glycemic index. I explain more about white potatoes in this post.
3. Quality meat and dairy. I’ve said before that you want your food to come from happy cows, chickens, and pigs, not sad ones. A lot of meat in the US is made in factory farms, where animals are fed “all vegetarian diets” (don’t let that fool you – chickens should actually be eating insects too) of corn and soy and pumped full of antibiotics to prevent diseases rampant in the close quarters they’re kept in. Choose organic, grass-fed cows and free range chickens and eggs. Bison is also a good option, as they are naturally grass-fed (thank goodness we haven’t put them in factories yet!).
4. Fat +fiber = fullness. Both fat and fiber keep food in your stomach longer, keeping you full longer. This is an important part of avoiding hunger.
5. Avoid “starvation hunger” or “hangry-ness”. Aside from eating fat and fiber regularly, try to eat every 4 hours or so and avoid skipping meals. It’s easier to make healthy decisions when you’re just a little hungry and a packed lunch is in the kitchen ready to be heated up, than when you haven’t eaten in 7 hours and you are dreaming of cheeseburgers and Chipotle burritos.
6. Be prepared and DIY. Making your own food at home is the best way to be assured that it is healthy. In addition, keep snacks on hand in case you need them. Almonds, dried fruit (with no added sugar), fresh fruit that keeps well (apples are good), plain yogurt, etc are all good snacks to keep on hand. If you can’t refrigerate, though, nuts are usually easiest.
Transformation Challenge Nutrition Package
During the challenge, I am offering some extra help. For $75 you will receive:
- A 3-day meal planning template for 1800, 2300, or 2800 calories to help you plan meals
- Recipes and quick, easy meal ideas
- 5 group sessions – nutrition lesson and open discussion (meeting Saturdays throughout the challenge, except 1/18 when myself and others will be competing)
- Weekly email check ins.
In addition, if you’d like to drop in to one of the group sessions without buying the whole package, you can do so for $15.
If you’d like to purchase a nutrition package, email me at [email protected]
08 Dec / 2013
The year is quickly coming to a close and we still have so much to do!
Keep up the great training…no substitute for training dirty and eating clean.
Saturday, December 14th HOLIDAY PARTY
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Where: DAEDALUS Restaurant & Bar
If you plan on having dinner at Daedalus please make reservations. Call: 617-349-0071
Champagne Toast & Desserts around 7:30/8 p.m.
Can’t wait to see everyone!
Friday, December 27th is the deadline to sign up for the Transformation Challenge if you are having hydrostatic measurement. The hydrostatic measurement will take place on January 4th. Please let Tina or Jason know if you are interested. If you can’t make the Saturday, January 4th hydrostatic measurement we can set you up to get tested on Sunday, January 5th.
The Transformation Challenge is a great way to kick off the New Year and start some healthy habits. It’s only 6 weeks and you will have a group of people supporting you while you make some changes to sleeping, hydration, mobilization, nutrition, & better choices!!
06 Dec / 2013
As you all know Coach Julie will be going to CrossFit Lando to coach CJ in her first throw down. Below is the programming for Olympic Lifting class for those who will be training. Please use common sense and help each other out.
If you get an opportunity to get out to CrossFit Lando in Woburn after training please come cheer on CJ!
Hang Snatch + Snatch Warm up to 75% then 5 Sets @ 75% Focus on high elbows on 3rd pull
Power Clean + Push Press
70% 2X2 75% 1X2 80% 1X2 85% 1X1 90% 1X1
70% 1X3 75% 1X2 80% 3X/2
06 Dec / 2013
Fire It Up! Fire It Up!
It’s been a great week of training. Tons of new personal bests in the clean and snatch. A quick shout out to Sophie with a 20# plus PR on both her clean and snatch. This after nearly setting the gym record last week in the “Mary” WOD. She is on fire indeed.
How about you?! Where did you see improvement? Post to comments.
This Saturday is the CrossFit Lando competition in Woburn. CJ is participating in her first competition. If you have the time and means of travel, go and cheer her on. She will definitely appreciate it.
Also on Saturday at the gym during the 12pm hour, Coach Jason and Alex B will be discussing the upcoming Transformation Challenge that will begin on Jan 4, 2014. This is a perfect time to get more details about the challenge and ask any questions you may have.
Next Saturday is The Holiday Throwdown. You must sign up in advance for a heat time in the gym. The WOD will be announced the morning of. THERE WILL NOT BE NORMAL CLASSES. Later that evening come out for the holiday social at Daedalus.
What’s On Tap
This week’s programming will focus on interval training and couplets. Keep the intensity high!
Saturday – 12/7
1a Handstand push ups – 6×2
1b Pistols – 6×2 each leg
2. AMRAP 12
10 Push Press, 115/75
10 Pull ups
Sunday – 12/8
3 x AMRAP 5
10 DB Snatch (alternate each rep) (AHAP)
20 Double Unders
Rest 5:00 between circuits
Monday – 12/9
1. Jerk – 5×2
2. 5 rounds for time
10 Overhead squats, 145/125
15 Knee to elbows
Tuesday – 12/10
1. Bench Press – 3×5
2. 3 Rounds for max reps
1:00 Airdyne (cal)
1:00 OH Swings, 24/16
1:00 Pull ups
1:00 Push ups
Wednesday – 12/11
1a Skin the cats – 3×5
1b L-sit hold – 3xmax
2. EMOM 15
2 clean @ 90% of weight moved last week
Thursday – 12/12
1. Position 1 snatch – 6×3
2. Run 3 x 2:00 (500M)
rest 1:00 between efforts
Friday – 12/13
1. Back Squat – 5×3
Run 1 mile
Run 1 mile
Saturday – 12/14
Holiday Throwdown (sign up in the gym for your heat)