Archive for March, 2014


Goodbye Open–Hello Strength Bias

March 31, 2014

Thank Goodness the CFG Open is OVER  (The exception being those athlete’s performing 14.5 on Monday).   

Monday 3/31  is the first day of what will be a 12 week shift in the programing towards a strength development phase. Some of what is written below is a direct repeat of the last time we started our strength bias cycle but some is new. Please read all of this posting so you come in to the gym prepared.

The Weekly Schedule is as follows:

Monday-  Back Squat or Front Squat

Tuesday- Shoulder Press

Wednesday-  Strict Pullup

Thursday- Deadlift or Sumo Deadlift or Cleans

Friday- Bench Press or Close Grip Bench Press

Our last 2 cycles of linear progression were pretty successful, resulting in an average of 16% gains across the 3 lifts tested. First timers can expect more than that.  We will keep the same format for the lifts but we will change the way we apply the supplemental action (Strength 2)  and the Metcons.  These changes are detailed below.

First, Some FAQ’s

Why a strength bias? Strength is the critical component of fitness. Your Strength drives your metcons and your metcons drive your Long Slow Distance, but the LSD does not reciprocate and drive your strength. Every one of you will see improved performance in CrossFit workouts as your strength increases. For the newer athletes amongst you, this might be the difference between scaling every workout and completing workouts as prescribed. For our members with competitive ambitions, this format will serve as better prep for the CrossFit Games Open. If you have been following the Open, the Regionals and the Games, you will see that the workouts are getting heavier and harder. In an effort to remain competitive in the CrossFit world we are trending heavier too.

In addition to the strength workout, there will still be a second period devoted to work capacity. This is a format we have used often so it really won’t seem very different to what you have already experienced. Expect short durations, heavy loads, couplets and triplets. Do not expect multi-event chippers.

Hmmm…I don’t know…Wont This make me bulky? Dont I need more Cardio? No and No. It is my sincere hope that the diet contest has made you aware of the following FACT. Your bodyfat is what make you look bulky and the means to address this are best achieved by changing what you eat. Hopefully, some of what you are paying for (In addition to the charm and wit of our staff, the access to equipment and our legendary parties) is our expertise about how to make you as FIT as possible. Not as thin as possible. Sometimes those goals coincide for a while and sometimes they do not. Yes, if you build muscle and remain fat, you will indeed appear bigger/bulky but VERY few among you will not see positive appearance changes by following this strength-bias program IF your food is in line.

That said, if you want more, do more. Miss the old 5k? Waxing Nostalgic for the 60 minute Step Aerobic class you used to take? Feel free to do so, but AFTER your Strength action.

How do I get this most out of this? 

A) FREQUENT ATTENDANCE. I put that in all-caps to emphasize it’s importance. You need to get here and hit these lifts regularly. Much like Rxd is an ambitious standard, we are programming for the athlete who is prioritizing his/her fitness and progress. If that’s not you via circumstance or attitude, your progress will suffer in comparison. To that end, however, I DO recognize that life intrudes in unavoidable ways. Therefore, if you cant get here very often, I would prioritize as follows 1) Squat 2) Shoulder Press 3) DeadLift. That means if you only get here 3x in a given week, you should Squat, Shoulder Press and deadlift. So if you only make it in M and TH in a given week you may want to Squat and Press in that order, despite being the only person doing so that day, then do the work capacity test with the class.   If you have your own personal goals, and your attendance is limited, push those lifts to the front burner.  So if, for example, a bodyweight pullup is your priority and you can only come 1x that week, get your pullups in.

B) Record Your Numbers:  This is absolutely essential!  Having a record of what you did before will make your lifting more efficient and effective. anything else is playing darts blindfolded.  You cant improve on last week if you dont know what last week even was.   You can journal on a blog, in a calendar, or in a good old-fashioned notebook: anything works as long as it’s written down somewhere.  

This sounds complicated.  I kinda wanna just work out and sweat?   Aim higher.  You can sweat almost anywhere.  Get something out of your money and get dramatically stronger.  

I’m down for strength bias, I’ve done it before and it kicks ass,  but what’s different about this 12 week period?  Glad you asked.  Please see the schedule breakdown below

Week 1– Test 1 Rep Max  Perform Target Lift 3×8.  Work capacity.

Weeks 2,3,4 Target Lift 4×8, Supplemental Strength,  Work capacity.

Week 5– Deload.  3×5 Target Lift, No Supplemental, Work capacity.

Weeks 6,7,8 Target Lift 4×5, Supplemental Strength, Work capacity.

Week 9– Deload. Target Lift 3×3 No Supplemental Strength Work capacity.

Weeks 10,11,12 3×3 Target Lift, Supplemental Strength, Work capacity.

Week 13 — Test Out 1 rep max.

Significantly, for the first time we will be repeating our work capacity metcons at the same point in every 4 week cycle.  So for example if you perform HELEN on Day 3 week 2 during the 4×8 block, you will again perform HELEN on Day 3, week 6 which is during the 4×5 and a final time on day 3 week 10 during the 3×3.  You still get 20 WODs between similar efforts, so variety remains high, but we’ll see how your strength gains affect your metcon capacity.


Get excited kids.  You’re about to get very strong!


Close Out the Open with 14.5 9 to 1 pm. Food at noon. Closed Sunday. Strength Bias Starts MONDAY

March 29, 2014

Athletes, our doors are open at 9am tomorrow and stay that way until 1 pm.  Come and get your 14.5 score verified.  Open gym is concurrent BUT, please be advised that if turnout is high, we may be short on space and equipment.

Food is at noon the forecast is for 70 degree, so come on out!


Strength bias, and what to expect from the next 12 weeks will be detailed on Sunday RIGHT HERE.  So please check back before you wander aimlessly in on Monday and make me repeat myself.




WOD for Friday 3-28-14 CFG Open wod 14.5 and an alternate

March 28, 2014

StrenhFirst off, please note that you can perform this WOD Friday at all the regularly scheduled times OR you can attend our affiliate social  on Saturday from 9-1.  Saturday there’s food, and not just burgers and wonder bread.  No indeed.  Matt R. is slinging a paleo feast with like, 4 courses, so factor that in your decision.

The Open WOD is as follows

21-18-15-12-9-6-3 of Thrusters @ 95/65,  Bar Facing Burpees

Thats 84 reps of each action.  It took the champs 8:30 to 11 minutes, so count on 15-20.  

Now, if the above seems intensely familiar, that because we did a very similar workout with identical thrusters and OTB burpees JUST MONDAY.  So Open Athletes, you should be ready for the suck.  This one will run longer, but the impact will be similar.  Everyone else, I’m going to cap this at 15 AND (because Thrusters and Burpees are bad enough on their own, worse when combined and unbearable when done 2x in a week) give you the option of skipping this entirely in favor of our alternate WOD.

Strength – 30 Bench Press for time.  Guys Bodyweight/ Women .66 bodyweight. 7 Minute Cap.

Strength 2- 50 Sumo Deadlift  for time.  Guys 1.25 Bodyweight/ Women Bodyweight. 7 Minute Cap

Work- 3 Minutes of Plank Hold.  For time.  




WOD for Thursday 3-27-14 Saturday’s Local Affiliate Gathering.

March 27, 2014

This Saturday, we will extend Open Gym and host an unpredictable number (could be large or quite small)  of other CrossFitters who will be closing out the CFG Open with workout 14.5.   While we actually wont know what the wod is until thursday evening, I am hoping that you all will come and join in the festive atmosphere.  All experience levels and abilities are welcome, and you dont have to be registered for the open to participate.  Food served at 12 Noon.

Please rsvp in the comments section if you are able to attend.  And just to head off anything like ” Saturday is the day I devote to my kids” type of babble,  take it from me,  Your kids would   L O O O O V E   to get you out of their hair for a few hours Saturday morning.  Let them play some Xbox and drink some Mt. Dew, for crap’s sake!   What are you, Tiger Mom?

WOD for Thursday

Complete all elements against a running clock.  

Run 1 mile

Row 1600 m

Airdyne 100 Cals

Row, Bike and run in any order, but you must complete any given element before moving on to the next one.  So no 800m followed by 50 cals etc.




WOD for Wednesday 3-26-14

March 26, 2014

Strength-  Shoulder Press 10-8-6-4-2  for load.

Work-  Alternating Tabata Intervals

1- a) Situps  b) Air Squats

rest 5 minutes

2-a) Hang Power Clean  b) Shoulder to over head  95/65


WOD for Tuesday 3-25-14

March 25, 2014

STRENGTH 5×5 Strict Pullups for load.

TECH- 10 minutes Split jerk  work to a heavy single.

AMRAP in 8 of 50 Double Unders 25 KB Swings.


WOD for Monday 3-24-14

March 24, 2014

This is the last week of the Open, the last week of the narrow tool box and the last week before we start up our strength bias.  Hallelujah!  I dont know about you, but all this metcon jumping around has outlived it’s fun.  

That said, this Open has been the most interesting of the 4 years to date, with one work/rest interval WOD, a heavy element (sort of) and, for the first time, a multi-event chipper with the c2 included.  So, what have we NOT seen?  Burpees (a staple in both 12 and 13) and Thrusters (the last event every year).   I’m guessing one or both may appear in this final week and therefore we’ll prepare as follows:


Strength 1-  4×5 High Bar Back Squat.  tempo controlled at 1-5-1-?.    So that’s a 5 second pause at the bottom and as long as you like at the top. 

Strength 2- Weighted Step Up.  3×5 R and L.   Lock the grounded leg and try to work ONLY from the leg on the box.  

Work-  8 Minutes, Ascending 3’s  (3,3  then 6 and 6, then 9 and 9 etc.)  Thrusters 95/65  OTB Burpees.