Happy Friday 818ers! Today's blog is written by CF 818's first member, Chris Abramian, who you probably know around the gym as CA. Unfortunately, Chris will be leaving CF 818, but before that he wanted to share some thoughts with his friends and extended family at the gym. Check it out!
All good things must come to an end…
….and as such, I am announcing that, unfortunately, I will be leaving CrossFit 818 as a coach and member.
I spent some time thinking about what I wanted to say to all of you. First it started as a list of what I've achieved at the gym, I’m proud of all of them but in the grand scheme of things not that important. Then I started thinking about my favorite moments at the gym; each year at the CrossFit Total, early morning training, watching members compete in competitions and others showing up to my meets just to show support, honestly the list is too long to write. My thoughts started to drift to all the lessons I've learned at 818; what it means to truly work for something, the dedication and discipline it takes to reach your goals, how to be honest with yourself and be accountable.
I’ve come to realize that the only thing I really wanted to say was thank you. Thank you to every member, every coach, everyone who has contributed to make 818 my second home. It truly has been a pleasure and I will never forget the amazing people I’ve met, one in particular, Molly. For those of you who don’t know Molly and I first met at 818 three years ago, and we will be getting married this December.
When the gym first started their coaches development program Zareh and Armen asked each of us , “Why do you want to coach?” My answer then and still is now, that during my journey through fitness I have had the support and access to the knowledge of countless people whenever I needed it, and I wanted to give back. I wanted to be a resource to help others as a way of showing my appreciation. I would like to thank both Zareh and Armen for giving me that opportunity to give back, and thanks to all of you who let me coach you in one way or another.
I’d like to leave you all with a little advice, and no it’s not lift heavy things often (which you totally should do always) but if I could just share one thing that I learned through my time at 818 is that whatever you choose to do, whether it is in fitness, relationships, or career put some passion in it. It might sounds cliche but truly put your all into it and let it become part of you. In the end for anyone to be successful in what they do it must be part of who they are, not just something they do. CrossFit 818 will always be a part of me, and I will never forget it.
Time…3 years 10 months
Fare thee well, CA!
A. Static Funtimes
*rotate through the movements
*15 seconds on, 15 seconds rest for a total of 24 rounds (8 total rounds of each)
B. AMRAP 17:
30 snatches (75/45)
30 snatches (135/75)
30 snatches (165/100)
max snatches (210/120)
*burpees terminate with a 6" touch above reach
Posted by Commish
So it looks like we've got the makings of a CF 818 Ragnar Relay team! Thus far our team is composed of Nima, Armen, Katie and Yvette. We will be participating as a 12-person team, so we're going to need a few more able bodies to join us before this awesome event becomes a reality! Having a team of 12 is beneficial for two reasons: first, it reduces the cost of participation, and second, it helps spread the mileage around which gives everyone more rest. Events like this are a lot of fun because you get to experience the team aspect of a challenging undertaking and you get the satisfaction of a job (awesomely) well done once you finish!
Questions? Check out the blog (link) from last week for more info.
Interested? Sign-up on the whiteboard by the power platform!
TBT to when CF 818 did another test of physical endurace - the Tough Mudder!
10 rounds for reps:
40 seconds max knees to elbow
rest 20 seconds
40 seconds max double unders
rest 20 seconds
40 seconds max db thrusters (45x2/30x2)
rest 20 seconds
Posted by Commish
The 2015 Reebok CrossFit Games season is nearly here and I think every one of you should sign up for it.
The Open is a huge online competition in which everyone who chooses to participate completes a specific workout every week for 5 weeks starting at the end of February and running through March. After finishing the workout, everyone submits their scores to the leaderboard where you're ranked in your division, region, state, or any other group you want to look at.
The workouts are tough, fun, and provide a great opportunity for you temporarily change the focus on why you show up to the gym and put yourself in a position to do things you've never done in the past. In years past, Open workouts have included movements like double unders and chest to bar pull ups and many of you who have participated can remember not only how you first got those movements in the middle of those Open workouts but also use those memories to motivate you to further develop over the rest of the year.
Even better, this year the Open will feature a scaled division for people who want to participate but don't have the skills or strength necessary for certain barbell movements or gymnastics movements. Given this new scaled option, it's a no-brainer that everyone should participate.
One of the most beautiful parts of CrossFit is that it's changed the way we motivate people to improve their health and fitness. While everyone wants very similar things (look better naked, earn that cheat meal each week, have more energy to play with the kids, etc), those are goals not motivations. Between the community of people involved in a common task (how much fun is it to finish a tough workout and then talk to everyone in the class about how tough it was?) and the competitive aspects of CrossFit (you vs you, you vs the clock, you vs your fellow CrossFitters), participating in the Open is a really simple way to turn up the motivation to get into the gym, eat cleaner, move better, and therefore will get you better results.
We're also going to be changing up the way CF818 members experience the Open. In years past, we've put the Open workout into the regular class on a specific day each week and allowed anyone who wants to do it to come and get it done there. This year we'll be running what is commonly known as "Friday Night Lights": regular classes on Friday will end early during the Open and in the evening we'll be opening the gym up for a weekly mini competition.
We'll have heats you can sign up for, everyone participating will have judges, we'll have prizes at the end of the Open for top finishes in the workouts and overall, as well as prizes for the people who participate in every Friday Night Lights event. On top of that, we're working with sponsors to put together some free stuff for everyone participating in our Friday Night Lights events, so it's definitely going to be a good time for everyone.
These events will be open to whoever wants to come, so if you want to bring your friends or family to check it out and cheer you on, please feel free to do so! Remember that Friday Night Lights is just an extension of our regular fun workouts, a chance for you to flex your competitive spirits, and a good opportunity to hang out and workout with your fellow 818ers. It won't be the same without, so be sure to join up and keep your eyes open for more details.
Sign up for the Open HERE.
A. Kipping pull up practice
B. 4 rounds for time:
20 back squats (135/95)
*rest 3 minutes after each round
Posted by Armen.
The CrossFit Open is rapidly approaching. Have you signed up? If not, why not? The Open is for everyone, in the past we've scaled the workouts just like we would any other workout. This year, things are different. For the first time ever, the CrossFit Open will have a scaled division. The Open isn't just for Games athlete hopefuls. It's for the CrossFit community in it's entirety. We're going to be doing some fun stuff this year at 818 for the Open so it's definitely not something you're going to want to miss. If you've ever considered doing the Open, but shied away for whatever reason, now is your time. Sign up. I promise you won't regret it.
In case you need a little bit more encouragement, the CrossFit Games website posted this great article the other day about a young man who will be participating in his first CrossFit Open this year. Check it out here. Like he says, "it's not just the Fronings of the world that can do this...it's everyday people."
From the vault: Julie tackling one the WODs from the 2013 Open
A. Every 2 minutes for 6 rounds
2 Paused no handed front squats
*5 second pause at the bottom
*use the same heavy weight across the last 4 rounds
B. AMRAP 3
*every time you stop, complete 10 jump squats
rest 2 minutes
*every time you stop, complete 10 push ups
Posted by Megan
Happy Monday! Eric Thomas is one of my favorite motivational speakers. You may recognize his galvanizing voice and pointed message from the "How Bad Do You Want It?" videos that have been posted on this blog before. Every time I listen to this guy speak I want to run headlong through a brick wall. I don't think it's possible to not get excited by this stuff. The message in the video below is to focus on the reason why you get up in the morning. There's something that lights a fire in all of us. What's your reason why?
A. Every 30 seconds for 12 minutes:
1 power clean
Add weight every 4 minutes
B. For time:
50 lunges (1-count)
40 toes to bar
30 box jumps (24/20)
Posted by Commish
What do you see when you look out the window? I see a big playground full of places to walk, hills to climb and things to look at. We spend so much of our time indoors at the office, at home or in some other box that we may forget just what lies beyond the four walls of the current room we are in. Get outside once in awhile. Walk down a path that is new. Try something different. The world is waiting for you to experience it!
Yvonne and her friend on a recent rock climbing trip at Red Rock Canyon in Nevada!
5 Wall Ball (20/14)
3 Handstand Push-ups
1 Deadlift (275/185)
Posted by Commish
There are a bunch of great events designed to test physical ability that take place throughout Southern California. We've got something like ten months of summer, so why not throw your hat in the ring at a local CrossFit competition or obstacle course? Your fellow 818ers have been participating in the NLI circuit for years and we've even done a couple Tough Mudders. It's also pretty cool to see your fitness outside of the gym in action.
Nima, our resident endurance event expert, brought the Ragnar Relay event to my attention and wanted to spread the word about the Southern California race that is coming up on the weekend of April 10-11.
Here's what you need to know:
- The Ragnar Relay is an overnight (24+ hour) race.
- You can field a team of 6 or 12 participants.
- The race is long (Huntington Beach to San Diego) and is broken up into different legs of varying distance and difficulty.
- The cost per participant is between $125 and $165 (although prices will go up in early February).
While the Ragnar Relay is very difficult, it is not unlike any other physical event in the sense that you will need to dedicate some time, money and effort to the cause. If you think you have what it takes, check out the Ragnar page (link) for a more detailed look at the map, the race legs and other important information. If you have any questions or want to get in on this awesome adventure drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Nima after completing the Cozumel Ironman event in Mexico!
A. In teams of 2:
400m sandbag carry
B. In teams of 2 AMRAP 20:
100 calorie row
150 kb swings (70/53, USSR)
200 double unders
Posted by Commish.
Quit comparing yourself to other people. All you'll get from that is heartache because there will always be someone stronger, fitter, faster than you, and the important thing is that you are becoming and being the best version of yourself.
If your main source of drive and motivation is from comparing yourself to other people, you're going to very quickly start falling short of your expectations and lose motivation. Look within yourself, keep track of your progress, and use that as a measuring stick of your success.
A. Every 3 minutes for 4 rounds:
5 back squats
*use the same weight across
B. AMRAP 18 minutes:
30 push ups
20 box jumps (24/20)
10 thrusters (115/83)
Posted by Armen.
Yesterday marked day 1 of a challenge I gave myself to go strict Paleo. I normally try to stay away from processed foods, grains and gluten, and refined sugars. But the holidays are always a tough time for me, there's a lot of treats going around, yummy beverages (hot cocoa, anyone?), and plenty of other not-so-healthy food stuffs that I usually end up eating despite my best intentions. Although treating yourself every once in a while is totally okay, I let myself off the hook a lot these last few months. Part of it was poor food planning and time management. My schedule has been nuts since about mid-November so making it to the grocery store and prepping meals took the backseat, especially if it meant losing precious hours of sleep. I ate what was convenient despite the hit my wallet took.
Why am I going strict Paleo and not just cleaning up my diet back to the way it was? Straight up, I want to be leaner. I've done the WLC, I've been Paleo + dairy, and I've been gluten free but I've never been 100% strict Paleo. I've seen results with all of those, but I wanted to experiment with something I haven't done before and see what comes of it. A lot of my motivation to do this is based on aesthetics, but I also know how addicting processed sugars are and I boarded the sugar train back in October. So I'm also looking to break that dependency and get my energy levels more consistent throughout the day versus cycling through highs and lows. It will be interesting to see how my performance in the gym improves since I won't have any processed crap running through my system. If any of you have thought about switching up your diet and have questions about it, shoot me an email or talk to me between classes, I'd be more than happy to help and answer any questions you may have.
P.S. If you see me reaching for a chocolate chip cookie KC bar, feel free to smack that sucker right out of my hand.
Elie demonstrating the post workout AM-NAP
A. EMOTM 10
8 Pull ups
B. Every 2 minutes for 10 rounds:
5 Power Cleans (75/53)
10 Push press
15 Back squats
Posted by Megan
The CrossFit Open is right around the corner so I want to share a story about Matt Chan, a perennial Games competitor who placed second in 2012. This past summer Matt was mountain biking with his wife when he fell unexpectedly and got his leg caught in the handlebars. What followed was not the kind of fall we experienced as kids that ended up with a skinned knee, or at worst, a broken arm. Matt's fall partially severed several of the arterial branches that spread out into the leg from the femoral artery - this was a serious injury that could have claimed his life. His wife was able to find help and about an hour and a half after the fall Matt was flown by helicopter to a hospital where he underwent surgery to repair the damage. The doctors were able to save Matt's leg and his life, but they told him that it would probably be difficult to return to 100% of his athletic ability. Well, the body is quite an interesting machine... Five months after the incident he has matched some of his previous numbers, set some new PRs and now has his sights set on getting back to the CrossFit Games - proof that with determination and willpower you can conquer anything.
Note: The video below is mostly interview footage of Matt and Cherie Chan but there are a few images from the hospital stay that are graphic.
A. EMOTM 5:
3 hang squat snatch
2 hang squat snatch
1 hang squat snatch
*use the same weight across each five minute segment
*add weight from one segment to the next
B. For time:
50 burpee pull ups
Posted by Commish