Haters gonna hate, potatoes gonna potate. By Courtney Shepherd
For 20 minutes, every minute on the minute complete:
3 Weighted strict pull-ups (dumbell)
With remaining time, complete as many air squats as possible
Post weight to BTWB
I’m not an enormous fan of running. Yes I see the benefits of it, but I’ve never been one of those people that enjoys just going out for a run. Hey let’s go run a 10K, it’s not something you’ll hear should I call you. Let’s go do some fast exercising, is. That being said I recently read an interesting article on The Poliquin Group’s website regarding sprinting. Now I know it’s not the same as a lengthy distance run, but after reading the article and reading the benefits, I’m convincing myself that running might be more fun than I thought.
I digress. Here are some great benefits to sprinting. Sprints, help you lose fat, build muscle, improve your health, and can come in handy when you need to run away from someone. That last one may be specifically for me only.
Here are some bullet points from the article. For the full article and studies referenced click HERE.
Sprints help you lose fat and not only that, but they do it in a short amount of time. Here’s some facts from a 2010 study. Participants in the study ran 6 sprint sessions of 6 30 second full effort sprints with 4 minutes of rest between. The average waist size dropped by 3 cm in that time.
Sprints help you build muscle by increasing the fast twitch fibers and studies have shown that sprinting enhances protein synthesis pathways by as much as 230 percent. Sprinting can also increase testosterone levels and decrease cortisol levels which is a desired balance when looking to increase muscle and decrease fat. Women won’t see the same increase in testosterone but will see increase in growth hormone levels, burn fat, and help build muscle.
There are many additional benefits to sprint training including; improved cognition and brain function, improved circulation and lung function, improved insulin sensitivity and energy use. Click the bold link above for all the benefits to sprint training.
Here’s my takeaway and one that will be useful for all of us. Add some sprints to your life. With the weather getting nicer, take advantage and find a nice straightaway and just rip it a few times. Curtis Park has a great cut of grass that is perfect for sprinting. Sprint one direction and walk back the opposite direction. Repeat a handful of time and you’ll soon start seeing the benefits that The Poliquin Group article talks about.
5 – 5 – 5 – 5 – 5
Post loads to comments and BTW.
CrossFit Verve Lean and Mean Nutrition Challenge – Are you in?
The CrossFit Verve Lean and Mean Nutrition challenge is a 6 week team and individual challenge designed to teach you healthy nutrition and lifestyle habits in a fun, competitive format that will help you build muscle, eliminate excess body fat and improve your health and fitness.
Why do I need this?
To build healthy lifestyle habits, balance your stress levels, improve your health and continue to improve your performance in the gym. And you’ll likely lose body fat and build muscle while you’re at it.
What should I expect from this challenge?
Over the course of this 6 week challenge, you can expect to build lean muscle and shed excess body fat. But that’s just the beginning. In addition to building a lean and strong physique, you’ll also improve your energy on a daily basis (no more mid afternoon insulin naps), improve your digestion, eliminate nasty food allergies and inflammation, continue to crush your workouts, and gain some control over your hectic and stressful life.
How does it work?
Every day for 6 weeks you will keep track of a couple important things, such as exercise, sleep, nutrition, quiet time and rest days. Each of these activities will have a certain score associated with them. At the end of the competition, the individuals with the highest scores (total points, body fat lost, best team score, most dramatic before/after photos) will be awarded with prizes!
How do I log my score?
You will be given a scorecard prior to the start of the challenge to use to log your scores daily.
What are the prizes?
GRAND PRIZE – Biggest Change in Before/After Photos: 1 month free training, 1 free Foundations membership for a friend, and a gift basket.
Most Body Fat Lost: Gift Basket
Most Points Scored (Individual): Gift Basket
Most Points Scored (Team): T-Shirts and Tender Belly Bacon
What are the rules?
Eat meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch and no sugar. Keep intake to levels that will support exercise but not body fat. Eliminate alcohol, processed foods, dairy, grains and other inflammatory foods. Exercise 5 times per week. Take 2 days off to rest and recover. Sleep a minimum of 7 hours every night. Take 20 minutes of uninterrupted quiet time every day (no electronics allowed).
How do I get started?
- Sign up in person at the gym or e-mail email@example.com
- Your fee will be paid through your account on Mind Body
- Schedule your first body fat test
- Take before pictures (make sure your entire body is in the shot – take one from the front, one from each side and one from the back. And take one flexing – because, why not?). Send these photos to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Identify and write down, on paper, 3 goals that you would like to achieve – improved fitness, decreased stress, a lower bodyfat percentage, better performance in the gym, etc
- Keep score every day
How does the scoring work?
- Eating (up to 8 points a day). Earn 2 points for each 100% real food meal (up to 3 per day). Earn 1 point for each clean snack (up to 2 per day).
- Drinking (1 point per day). Earn 1 point for each day without alcohol, soda, juice or other drinks that taste sweet (no artificial sweeteners). Black coffee and unsweetened tea is acceptable.
- Exercise (up to 3 points per day). Earn 2 points for each day with a CrossFit workout (maximum of 10 points per week). Earn 1 point for each day with a workout outside of the gym, such as Yoga, hiking, biking, etc. Minimum of 60 minutes of activity for these outside of gym workouts. Earn 2 points for each day that you do NOT exercise (limit 2 per week).
- Sleeping (2 points per day). Earn 2 points per day for each day with a minimum of 7 hours of uninterrupted sleep. Naps count towards your total!
- Quiet Time (1 point per day). Earn 1 point per day for taking 20 uninterrupted minutes of quiet time – no electronics allowed!
How do the teams work?
The teams will be selected at random and you will be assigned a coach. Your coach will provide you with accountability and will also be your resource for any questions regarding the competition.
How much does the program cost?
Program Cost: $35
Before and After Body Fat Test: $65
Where can I schedule my body-fat test?
Check out this Google Spreadsheet to register: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0As6SmCm7GOeadDNmU2JMbWVsaTlsNXNIY2VfZUh6VlE&usp=sharing#gid=0
What is the schedule/timeline for the challenge?
April 17th – First Body Fat Test @ Verve (register at the link above)
April 19th – Registration closes and teams are chosen at random. Information packets are sent out Saturday afternoon, containing all the guides and information you will need for the challenge.
April 20th – Go grocery shopping and prepare meals for the first three to four days.
April 21st – Challenge begins. Start filling out your score cards.
June 1st – Challenge ends. Tally your scores and keep with the healthy habits.
June 4th – Second Body Fat Test @ Verve. Be proud of your hard work.
OKAY, WHO’S IN? POST TO COMMENTS AND BE READY TO THROW DOWN!
In a team of two, complete as many push press as possible in 12:00
Partner 1 lunges 100′ while partner 2 does 5 supine ring rows and then as many reps as possible of DB push press (40#/25#)
Athletes switch when lunging athlete gets to rings
Post time to comments and BTW.
Engineering the Perfect Nights Sleep by Colby Knepp
You hear it time and time again – sleep is important! Well, how important is it? Check this out.
During those precious hours of rest, your body releases growth hormone and testosterone – hormones that give us more strength, muscle and vitality, and help to repair your broken down body (assuming your nutrition is up to par). This is ideal for anyone who wants to look, feel and perform their absolute best on a daily basis.
In addition to helping support the recovery process, getting enough sleep will also help you maintain a lean physique by improving your insulin sensitivity. Having high insulin sensitivity is generally a marker of good health. The more sensitive your body is to the storage hormone insulin, the better your body will process carbohydrate (storing carbohydrate in your muscles and liver rather than your belly fat). This is great news if you want to maintain a low body fat percentage.
Who doesn’t want that? But with all the modern luxuries (see: distractions such as Facebook, YouTube and Game of Thrones) that we have at our disposal, chances are you are missing out on the best sleep of your life – every night.
Here’s how to do it.
- Purchase a good bed. Memory foam does the trick for me.
- Establish a bedtime routine. Turn off the electronics one hour before bed. Drink some decaf tea and do some light reading. This is also a good time to work on your soft tissue – pull out those foam rollers and start mashing!
- Sleep in a cold environment (65 degrees) or take a COLD shower. I mean COLD. Turn that handle ALL the way to the cold side – five minutes minimum (or more if you’re a real man). I have no idea how or why this works, but you’ll feel like you’ve been hit with an elephant tranquilizer within about 30 minutes.
- Make your bedroom as quiet as possible. This means no television. Some white noise in the background such as a fan will help shut your brain down, however.
- Make your room as dark as possible. Blackout curtains will do the trick nicely.
- No cell phones or electronics. Seriously. Put them in another room and turn your notifications off. Purchase a plain jane alarm clock to replace using your cell phone as an alarm.
- Do some light reading before bed. Fiction or non-fiction; just be sure to shut it down after about 20 minutes.
- First thing in the morning, get 10-20 minutes of sunlight as soon as possible. Because sunlight is awesome. If your schedule allows it, go for a quick walk outside.
- And gosh darn it; wash your freaking sheets! Once a week, minimum.
The bottom line is this – you can train 5 days a week, eat clean most of the time and make some good progress towards your goals. But why miss out on recovering faster, having more energy throughout the day, and making GREAT progress towards your goals? Make ONE of these changes tonight and let us know how it goes.
Questions? E-Mail Me – email@example.com
Five rounds for time:
20 Dumbbell snatch, alternating
30 Ab-mat sit ups
Post time to comments and BTW.
Upcoming Athlete Interest Clinics:
As many rounds as possible in 6 minutes:
2 Squat cleans, 225# (135#)
4 Burpees over the bar
Post rounds to comments and BTW.
Free Intro Class 8am at Verve. Come meet some of the best CrossFit trainers around! Next Free Intro Class Saturday April 26 at 8am.
Next Foundations Program begins this coming Monday, April 14 at 7pm. This program is for active healthy individuals that want to ramp up into our fast paced group CrossFit classes. This class will meet Monday, Tuesday and Thursdays during each week, with a limited number of people per class. There is a total of six (6) classes that will need to be completed to sign-up for membership.
During the Foundations course we are going to want to know a little more about you. We will be conducting assessments in order to understand you, your personal goals, current health, concerns or up and coming competitions. Once we have some understanding of your needs, we can help you achieve your goals. Additionally, you will receive a comprehensive understanding of the CrossFit program.
Through the end of May, CrossFit Verve is offering a special 6 Weeks to Summer Getting Started package to new athletes. For $250, you can complete our Foundations Program and 1 month of Unlimited Membership. Upcoming and eligible Foundations start dates are April 14, April 28, May 12, and May 27. This includes a savings of $25-$75 off our normal rates. Please join us on these start dates to sign up or email firstname.lastname@example.org with questions. We look forward to meeting you and helping this summer get started off right!
6 Intervals of:
2:00 of the following work:
12 Medball cleans
6 Hand stand push ups
As many reps as possible of Muscle Ups
Post reps and rounds to comments or BTWB
“I’m good enough, I’m strong enough, and gosh darn it, people like me”
I had the opportunity to attend the Crossfit Competitors Course this past weekend. First let me say, I HIGHLY recommend attending that course if you have any interest in competing, coaching, or just motivating you to achieve your goals. Second, the topic of positive self-talk and the power of thought was discussed. I am an admitted culprit of mentally abusing myself like a red-headed step-child if a workout isn’t going my way, so this topic was of great interest to me.
During the discussion, Matt Chan mentioned having a personal mantra to keep you focused when things are going haywire. Example: When you are in on your fifth round of a 400 meter run just after doing 20 over-the-bar burpees and all you want to do is walk around the last corner, a personal mantra can snap you back to reality and keep you focused on your ultimate goal. After looking online and researching this topic, crossfit979 had some great information on setting and using your very own personal mantra. Here are some details on setting your personal mantra:
What is a mantra? A mantra is a sound, word, or phrase used to aid in meditation or to snap you back into focus at any point in time.
Why create a mantra? This is a great tool for reminding us why we are diving into the suck of a workout and pushing ourselves beyond a level we think we can achieve. Mantra’s can influence our subconscious to keep us moving on. By repeating your mantra over and over, in some cultures hundreds of times a day, you program your subconscious to always have your intentions in your head and it begins to influence the actions you take throughout each day.
We encourage you to define and utilize a personal mantra for yourself. Think about the stresses in your life, the goals you have to overcome them, and the things you want to achieve and create a phrase you can use to focus your intentions. Remember that your mantra should be personal, it should be 1-5 words that are meaningful to you. Your mantra should be written in a manner that is similar to your own verbiage; if you’re not a Greek philosopher and don’t speak latin, your mantra probably should not have that in it. Your mantra should be a motivator, or a reminder of who you want to be or what you want to accomplish this year or could define your dreams, goals and passions. The key is that it has meaning, it defines you and expresses the things you are going after.
“Create your mantra, program your mind, and get ready to be the best you’ve been in your entire life! The power of a mantra is immense!”
Here are some great examples of of some mantra’s that you can feel free to claim as your own:
“I am enough”
“I have come this far, I can go all the way”
“Yesterday I did, today I do, tomorrow I will”
“I am stronger than I was yesterday”
“I will beat Clancy”
Take a second to write your personal mantra in the comments below.
As many rounds as possible in 20 minutes:
8 Good mornings, 135# (95#)
8 Bent over rows, 135# (95)
Post rounds to comments and BTW.
The Protein Balance
There seems to be a protein pendulum today. On the one side, you have people who focus their diets on calories, as opposed to macro-nutrients. The idea is, limit your calories, and weight loss ensues. So, the person eats whatever they want, so long as a certain ceiling of calories isn’t reached. Often, this strategy is carb-rich. To be fair, I get it. I don’t want to be overweight, either. People are to be commended for at least trying something to improve themselves. But a low protein/high carb diet will force the body into a high-insulin, low-glucagon state. Bottom line, this is state of body that lends itself to obesity, and diabetes, among other things, regardless of caloric intake.
On the other side, you have individuals who are so pro-protein, you’d figure that there is no other food on this planet. They have found the latest, greatest protein supplements. They drink egg-whites out of the carton (Gross. Though I have done this.). Protein is king because they want to gain muscle. It’s all about muscle. And hey, I get it. I want to be huge too. I then want to buy shirts that are one size too small, and contort myself into flexy poses throughout the day to show off my hugeness. But eating too much protein with few carbs does us no good at all. Excess protein in converted into fat. So… you go off on protein to get your hugeness on, but your body says to you, “Sweet mother this is a lot of protein. Whatsoever shall I do with this?” It responds to itself in kind, “Ah. I shall store it as fat. For later. Cuz who knows, right?”
Obviously, these extremes don’t cut it. Number one, they are not practical, number two, they often don’t work. So something must be missing here. If limiting protein in the name of calories doesn’t make me lose weight, and eating protein in excess doesn’t make me gain muscle the way I want, then what’s the answer?
You probably could guess, it’s somewhere in the middle.
We prescribe the Zone Diet. The Zone prescribes a protein intake as being 30% of your daily munchiness. It also prescribes not eating protein by itself. Protein, carbs, and fat, all eaten in ratio’d quantities, which leads to hormonal balance, which leads to the body being able to accept and process the food you eat the way you want it to be accepted and processed. Which means the protein you eat will actually go to muscle building and restoration. BOOM! Moderation leads to a better existence.
Please join us Wednesday evening 7pm for a Free Nutrition Workshop by Matt Chan. We’ll be discussing Zone and fine-tuning your diet to improve your performance. RSVP on MBO. This event is free and open to the entire community.
People ask us all the time, “What do I eat? How should I eat?” It always comes back to how you are fueling your body. If your performance stinks or plateaus, think about what’s going into your mouth. If you aren’t happy with your body composition, think about what’s going into your mouth. You know that saying about “Not being able to out-train or out-exercise a bad diet.” Well, it’s true.
World Class Fitness in 100 Words:
“Eat meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch and no sugar. Keep intake to levels that will support exercise but not body fat. Practice and train major lifts: Deadlift, clean, squat, presses, C&J, and snatch. Similarly, master the basics of gymnastics: pull-ups, dips, rope climb, push-ups, sit-ups, presses to handstand, pirouettes, flips, splits, and holds. Bike, run, swim, row, etc, hard and fast. Five or six days per week mix these elements in as many combinations and patterns as creativity will allow. Routine is the enemy. Keep workouts short and intense. Regularly learn and play new sports.”
Also, please join us for monthly Happy Hour this Friday at 5pm at Jake’s patio up the street at 38th and Walnut. We’ll be celebrating the awesome weather this week and getting the weekend started off right!
5 Rounds for Time:
30 Bench Press 95#(65#)
3 rope climbs 15′
Post time to BTWB.
Many of you that have been coming to Skilz class have noticed we do a lot of strict pull up work. I’ve been making it a priority to add in more strict movements to help develop strength in the pull up, whether it’s a few max sets of strict pull ups or ring rows, the goal is to develop overall pulling strength. I’ve also talked to a lot of individuals during workouts and used strict pull ups as a modification in workouts to better build strength and hopefully make us stronger overall. After all we all want pull ups, right?
So what do you think? Do you think strict pull ups should come before kipping pull ups? I have my feelings and thoughts but it’s not about me, it’s about you. What are your thoughts?
Here is a great video with some well known CrossFit personalities that have an educated conversation about pull ups and the importance of both the strict version and the kipping version. Take a watch and hear both sides of the argument.