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CrossFit Boston’s very own Renegade Rowing Team has been working hard for eight week now to learn to row together in an eight person crew shell in hopes of crushing the competition at this years Rumble on the River.  Come cheer them on and check out the river!

Get outside, enjoy a walk, and even get some beer!  Check out what’s in store for the Renegade Rowing Team this weekend!

Rumble on the River 2013

Community Rowing Inc. (CRI) is set to host the fourth annual Rumble on the River, a free outdoor music and rowing festival scheduled for Sunday, September 15 from noon to 6:30 p.m. at the Harry Parker Boathouse, 20 Nonantum Rd. in Brighton.

The Renegade Rowing Team will be racing and there are many other activities to check out including live music and a VIP Beer Garden.  Register for access to the Beer Garden here … Rumble on the River VIP Beer Garden Experience!

Hope to see you there!

-Coach Pat

12 Aug 2013

CCP Assessment and Weekend Allstars

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This past weekend we had members competing in two different locations in the area. We had the Crossfit Iron & Grit teens competing at CrossFit New England’s Teen Competition in Natick as well as others competing at CrossFit Avalon. I was only able to see the awesome work at the Avalon Throwdown, but from what I understand and what I saw, ALL competitors represented our gym well. Hannah Pelofsky received the “Sprit of the Games Award” at the teen competition! Congratulations Hannah! Another B.I.G. shout-out to Cori Bernardi and Katie “Labonte” Telepciak for their outstanding performance at Avalon. Unfortunately we don’t know how well they placed because of a last minute change in scoring, but I believe they scored 2nd and 3rdrespectively! Great job ladies!


There’s one more thing I’d like to talk about today. I have enrolled in a Coaches Certification Program with the first section focusing on Assessment of athletes. This will allow me to better understand how to work with athletes in order to get them to move better, faster. There are really two parts to the assessment. One is a caliper body fat assessment (but doesn’t give a %), and the other is a movement assessment. I will need to do this assessment on 20+ members. I am offering up an offer to do this assessment for free to the first 20 members who approach me with interest. All additional members that wish to go through the assessment will be charged $50 for the evaluation and any follow up evaluations. If you are interested or have any questions, feel free to ask me or send me your questions at [email protected]

Who watched the team competition at the CrossFit Games last weekend?  Did you see the Partner Overhead Squats and the Worm (Log) Lift?  Ever wonder what it would be like to have to execute good form in a functional movement and do it at the same time as someone else?

Well now you can!  Above is a video of the Renegade Rowing team performing their warm up before getting in the boat.  In order to row well everyone in the boat must be moving together and doing the exact same thing at the exact same time.

The Renegade Rowing Membership at CrossFit Boston

As a Renegade Rowing Member at CrossFit Boston you’ll enjoy unlimited group classes like a normal membership.  In addition you’ll also commit to improving your training through Renegade Rowing Classes, One-on-One sessions with Coach Pat, and Individualized Assessment, Goal Setting, and Feedback.  Coach Pat will sit down with you every two months to review your progress, provide feedback, adjust your goals, and give you extra work to keep improving.

Renegade Rowing Classes in September!

One of the best parts of being a Renegade Rowing Member is that everyone will learn to row both in the gym and on the water!

Coach Pat will begin offering regular Renegade Rowing classes the week of September 16th.  Classes will take place on Tuesday and Wednesday nights at 6:30pm.  Additional days and times will be added based on demand.  So, if you are interested, sign up now and get Coach Pat to add a class that works for you!  Classes will be held at CrossFit Boston, Community Rowing, the track, and the stadium.  Occasionally we’ll even do a Row-WOD-Row where we row from CRI to CrossFit Boston, do a workout, and then row back to CRI.  Renegades can expect to get teamed up with a training parter for accountability.  Renegades can also expect to see Partner WODs and Team WODs pop up regularly.  It’s going to be Epic!

How do you become a Renegade Rowing Member?

Schedule a free consultation with Coach Pat.  He’ll explain the Renegade Rowing methodology, discuss your goals, and assess your fitness.

30 Jul 2013

Protein Powder Pros and Cons

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Protein powders were once the stuff of pro athletes and ultra meatheads, but have gone mainstream over the past 10 or so years. I first tried it when I was 15. When I told a personal trainer I’d been seeing with my mom that my goal was to get a 6-pack, he recommended I take 2 scoops of muscle milk powder 1-2 times per day. So mom and I dutifully trekked down to GNC and bought the vanilla flavor. And it was AWFUL. I don’t think I took the recommended dose even once, and I certainly never got said 6 pack. I couldn’t get it to dissolve in anything – not water, not milk, not a smoothie. Only now, looking back with educated eyes, do I see how completely ridiculous it was for this bro to tell a 15 year old athlete to take a mostly unregulated supplement! The industry has gotten much better since then in terms of taste and palatability, but it is still mostly unregulated. It’s not all bad, and it can be a good idea for some people. But before you head down to Vitamin Shoppe, weigh the pros and cons first.

On Whey

The most popular form of protein seen in supplements is whey. There are several types, which are:

1. Whey Protein Isolate – this is the most pure form of whey protein and the most available to the body for absorption. It is about 90% protein by weight and tends to be the most expensive kind.

2. Whey Protein Concentrate – this is generally 29% – 89% protein by weight. While more affordable than WPI, it also contains a little more fat and lactose.

3. Hydrolyzed Whey Protein – this type of protein is predigested. While on one hand it is easier to absorb, there is some debate about how effective it is compared to un-hydrolyzed protein, and it’s more expensive.


  1. It can provide a quickly absorbed source of protein. Generally, liquids are digested more quickly than solid foods. So, by “drinking” your protein, your body is absorbing it faster, which is good for rebuilding muscle after a workout. 
  2. It’s convenient. Because it’s much easier to carry around a plastic baggy of powder to mix with water or milk than a tupperware of lean meat and complex carbohydrates (at least I think so).
  3. It’s a source of added calories. This can be a con, too. But if you’re a guy who is always wanting to gain 20 pounds but just can’t eat all the time, a protein supplement with milk can be a quick, not super filling source of additional kcals.


  1. It’s expensive. Depending on how good the stuff is, it cost anywhere from $20 – $30 per pound. 
  2. There can be unpleasant stuff in there. The front label will say 100% whey protein. Cool. Until you read the ingredients label, which can include artificial flavors. xantham gum, soybean or other oils, artificial sweeteners, sugar (hint: anything with “dextrose” on the end is a sugar), and other ingredients that may be healthy or may not but unless you have a PhD in chemistry, who knows!
  3. It’s a source of added calories. I realize this is in the pro section too. Because this is good for some people but not for others. If you are trying to lose weight, you’re better of waiting an extra 20 minutes to get home and make your next meal OR having an apple and some jerky. The food will obviously also have calories, but it’ll make you more full than the protein powder. When you’re trying to lose weight, staving off hunger is a huge help!
  4. It’s not paleo. Because I don’t care how happy and grass fed the cow is, you cannot tell me you object to processed foods but are totally OK with drinking extracted cow’s milk protein with artificial sweetener and other additives in powder form.

My Advice

If you feel protein powder is right for you, I recommend finding a  brand that has a short ingredients list (I think the brand Neal sells only has 3) and take it once per day following a workout. Take enough to equal about 30 grams of protein. Any more than that and your body won’t use it as efficiently. You’re better off taking 30 grams at one time and eating a nice steak and salad an hour or so later than taking 60 grams of protein in one Blender Bottle. Whey protein is generally the best, and I recommend whey protein isolate, as it’s the most available form.

If you don’t want to take protein powder (I personally always felt it was more of a burden), just make sure you’re still recovering. Bring a snack with protein and carbs like jerky and fruit, chocolate milk, or trail mix for after your workout.

30 Jul 2013

CFB Grappling Seminar Friday

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What Do You Do With Your Fitness?

If you have been around CrossFit Boston for some time you have probably noticed that CFBers like to use their fitness for more than just moving the barbell.  We climb, kayak, race, row and everything in between.

When I started CrossFitting at CrossFit Atlanta in 2007 I did so not to be better at CrossFit but to be better at my sport, which at the time was Thai Kickboxing and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.  Last year CFB introduced a club grappling program which met a couple of times of week to review technique, spar and talk the philosophy/history of combat sport.  The program even produced some competition champions, notably Jo “Big Show” Bernstein who placed 2nd in a local no-gi competition against some sturdy competition.

This fall we will be bringing the grappling program back to CFB.  Days and times are TBD but to kick things off there will be a no-gi Brazilian Jiu Jitsu seminar (BJJ is traditionally practiced in a heavy jacket) at CFB this Friday August 2nd from 6:30pm until 8ish….  Everyone is welcome to attend regardless of experience level.

Where: CrossFit Boston Iron & Grit 114 Western Ave

Time: 6:30pm

What to wear:  Regular training attire, Relatively tight fitting, Compression Shorts & Rash Guards/ Under Armor Shirts Recommended.

What to Expect:  We will be reviewing a number of basic Brazilian Jiu Jitsu positions, concepts and submissions.

We will also have a special guest attending.   2010 IBJJF Pan American Champion and 2010 American Open Qualifier Jacob Hebeisen.

For more information contact Coach Jason :

[email protected]

25 Jul 2013


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Top CrossFit Athletes from around the world kicked off the second workout of the CrossFit Games yesterday by rowing a half-marathon.  That’s 21,097 meters for time!  But it wasn’t just a Half-Marathon, they had to decide if they wanted to row an all out 2k in the beginning, which counted as another workout for the standings.  It took many athletes around an hour and a half to get through it with the top finishers coming in at 1:18 for the men and 1:27 for the women.

CrossFit Boston has a solid group of athletes beginning their rowing career and perhaps one day they’ll tackle a half-marathon themselves.  Tuesday and Wednesday the Renegade Rowing Team had its first practice of the season at Community Rowing Inc. on the Charles River.  They learned how to carry a boat, setup the oars, and row in a barge.  They also tackled a couple of solid workouts including tabata squats and a metcon involving a 400m run, air squats, and push ups.  If you see a Renegade Rower in your class ask them about their experience and what they would hold for a Half-Marthon.

What 500m Split would you hold for 21,097 meters in a row? 1:50, 1:55, 2:05, 2:10?

Hit us back with your thoughts in comments and like this post if you want to try a Renegade Rowing Class!

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