Friday 151127

Everyday Warrior #4
7 Minute AMRAP: Increasing Reps
2 Ground to overhead 115#(75#)
4 Alternating pistols
4 Ground to overhead 115#(75#)
8 Alternating pistols


See full workout details here

Post reps to comments or BTWB

Last Friday's Everyday Warrior warriors battling it out last Friday.

Last Friday’s Everyday Warrior warriors battling it out.

DON’T CHEW GUM!! – Anna Mattson

WHAT?? I love minty fresh breath.  I love gnawing my stress away while freshening my breath on a piece of Wrigley.  How can chewing gum be bad for me?  After a recent visit to the dentist, I was informed of the many issues that can arise from the constant chewing and I was dumbstruck.  I spent some time researching if they were lying to me, and alas, they were not.  Here is an article I found supporting my dentists’ warnings.  Who would have thought chewing gum could lead to tight hips? See the article in its entirety here

#1 – Increase in Suprailiac Bodyfat

Regardless whether the chewing gum is sugar-free or not, it will affect your blood sugar levels and hormones such as insulin and cortisol, which in turn regulate blood sugar.

Why does that happen?

The sweet taste is crucial. What emerges is a neurochemical reaction. If we taste something sweet our brain responds to it by telling the body that sugar is on its way to the stomach, intestines and afterwards to the blood. To taste sugar has less impact than actually eating it but in my experience it´s not insignificant. From an empirical standpoint it´s enough to taste something sweet to slow down the progress in fat loss, especially the bodyfat on your hips, which according to BioPrint correlates with blood sugar management.

#2 – Activation of Digestive Tract

The sweet taste and the chewing will stimulate the flow of saliva. This is the first step of our digestive system. Stimulating digestion has an effect on our autonomic nervous system. It lowers the sympathetic nervous system and activates the parasympathetic nervous system, which means it shuts down the system and relaxes us.

Like the standby mode on our computers. Everyone knows the energy hole following a larger and/or highcarb lunch. Relaxation is important, especially in the evening but during the day, before and during workouts it decreases performance.

#3 – Decrease of Hip Mobility and Decrease in Power Output of Posterior Chain (MIND BLOWN)

The constant chewing causes adhesions and tension in the jaw muscles, especially in the Masseter, Pterygoids and Temporalis. Besides attention and concentration deficits, adhesions and tension in these muscles can also lead to decreased physical performance.

Dr. George Goodheart, an American chiropractor who defined the field of “Applied Kinesiology” more than 50 years ago, discovered a neurological link between muscle performances of the jaw and hip muscles, ie. the more tension in the jaw area, the more tension in the hip area because the nervous system controls these two areas partially coupled together. In strength training and with all sports in which running and sprinting play major roles, the hip muscles – especially the posterior chain – are crucial.

Constant gum chewing can therefore lead to a loss of hip mobility and a reduced power output of the Posterior Chain – which increases the potential for injuries and makes you slower.

#3 – Reduction of Sleep Quality

Tension in the jaw muscles is inversely correlated with sleep quality. Excessively chewing gum can even lead to and/or facilitate Bruxism, which is the clenching of the teeth other than in chewing and is associated with forceful grinding or rubbing the teeth together, mainly during sleep. Bruxism is one of the most common sleep disorders.

From experience, releasing the jaw muscles can increase sleep quality. Not chewing gum is an easy way to keep the jaw looser and ensure great sleep.


  • Yoga at 11am on Sunday with Kacey
  • If you are not competing in the IT TAKES A TEAM CHALLENGE, you can still be involved.  Follow THIS LINK to a sign-up sheet if you are able to volunteer!  Thank you in advance because it takes a team.
  • Please note the abbreviated schedule tomorrow!
  • Body Fat testing truck will be HERE Thursday, December 3rd. Sign up here

Thursday 151126

Partner “Holleyman”
40 Rounds for time:
5 Wallballs
3 Strict handstand push-ups
1 Power clean, 225#(155#)

*One partner works at a time. Partner will complete a full round and then switch.

Post times to comments and BTWB

Just a few of the many Verve athletes that competed at the Turkey Challenge last weekend.

Just a few of the many Verve athletes that competed at the Turkey Challenge last weekend.


Happy Thanksgiving!!!

For several years now it has been in my weekly regiment to do Thursday’s post. Which means for several years I have found myself doing the post on Thanksgiving day. And over the years I have shared with you the things that I am most thankful for, here are a few throwbacks. . . since it is also #TBT.

In 2013 I was thankful for:

I am thankful for my orthopedic surgeon and my physical therapist. I am grateful they understood what activities I was passionate about and provided their care accordingly. I am grateful I am physically capable of doing all the activities I love and then some without pain.

I am thankful I was blessed with sweet, sweet dance moves. I am grateful I am often moved by the music and feel compelled to bust them out for all to enjoy.

I am thankful for James P. Whitmire esq. He can always be counted on to read the WOD blog and leave a comment. The jury is out as to whether or not I am always thankful for his comments, but it is always nice to know the blog is read.

In 2014 I was thankful for:

I am thankful for my work husband Eric Clancy for taking on this big challenge of being business owners with me. I truly don’t think I would have said yes to it without him.

I am thankful for my massage therapist Jason Thompson of MyaTherapy. He is the best at what he does. He keeps my muscles and joints healthy, and he relaxes my mind after I deal with Clancy all day.

And, again, just like last year, I am thankful for a Verve member that I feel I can very consistently count on to read and comment on every blog. It’s always nice to know someone is listening. Thanks James “O.G.” Whitmire, even if I’m pretty sure half the time you don’t know what you are talking about.

What am I thankful for in 2015?

The things that I’m thankful for don’t seem to change much over the years. I am always thankful for the love and support of my family, my boyfriend, and my furry child. But this year, after officially ringing in 1 full year as a co-owner at Verve, I have 3 people I am beyond words, incredibly thankful for:

Anna is one of the most caring, compassionate people I know. It goes into everything that she does. On top of that she is . . . on top of it, like always. She is offering help, she is thinking ahead, she is getting it done. Thank you for helping make my job easier.

Danni is the most heartfelt, genuine, and least selfish person I know. Which, coincidentally, pops up everyday in the work that she does. She is the first to ask “how are you?”, she is the first to ask “do you need anything?”. She constantly puts others before herself, and as a result, she too makes my job even easier.

Clancy is not the most compassionate, caring, heartfelt person I know. But I couldn’t do what I do everyday without him. Clancy is a hard worker, who gets things done when they need to be done, he doesn’t wait on anyone. I’m thankful for our partnership. Plus, whether or not he will admit it, I know he likes me a little bit because I’m the only girl he has seen cry and he didn’t run away. He third makes my job the easiest.

And, as all good things must come to an end, so does James Whitmire’s run of being on my most thankful list. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still thankful for the loud mouth, back talking lawyer, however a new Verve member has taken over the title of person I am most thankful for reading our blogs and letting Verve know whats up from time to time. I’m thankful for Drew Corbett, mostly because he assures me it is completely appropriate to refer to one’s mouth as a pie-hole.

Enough about me, how about the rest of Verve’s trainers, what are they thankful for?

“It sounds sappy, but I don’t care. I’m thankful to have a job that I GET to go to, not a job I HAVE to go to. Seriously, I love that my work can be my happy place, and I’m surrounded by so many people that I genuinely care about. Even Clancy.” -Danni

“I’m grateful for the rivers being full this past summer and El Niño. ” -Patrick

“I am thankful for deodorant, pizza, and the people in my life (past and present) who have led to me to where I am on this exact day!” -Anna

“I’m thankful for all the people that have supported me on my journey from place to place, which inevitably landed me in Denver, doing the thing I love the most.” -Paul

“I am grateful for all the verve peeps and trainers who have held, rocked, walked, etc. my babies so I can work out. Even Clancy has reinserted a pacifier here and there! It takes a village to lose the muffin top ;).” -Beth

“Friends, family, mentors supportive co-workers and the freedom to live my life as I please.” -Dan

“I am thankful for hugs, my mom’s chocolate chip cookies, the challenges in my life that have helped mold me into the person I am today, and for all the ordinary moments in my life that turn into something special.” -Ali

“All the crazy humans in my life who make it perfectly hilarious, gorgeous, and mine.” -Maddie

“I am thankful for the Orthopedic Surgeons statewide and for the owners of Verve who are too busy with other stuff to think about firing me.” -Zink

“I am grateful for all my friends and family near and far, that I’m able to pursue my new dream, and of course tacos, nachos and booze!” -Robyn

“I’m thankful that after 12 years of higher education, pharmacy school is almost over….and also for booze for helping me get this far.” -Nate

“Pete..that is it..and most times not even him. Actually, there are two other people in my life I’m super thankful for, my amazing, hard working, partner Courtney and my brother from another mother Paul. If I don’t see them or talk to them at least once per day I feel lost. I’m thankful for whatever alchemy brought them both into my life.” -Eric

“I’m grateful for my kids and an amazing wife. In addition, I’m thankful that she lets me hang-out with all you crazy folk at Verve.” -Jay

“I’m thankful for my supportive family, also pizza, ice cream (I think just carbs in general), and for having a job.” -Ryan


**Alright folks, now it’s your turn. Let us know what you are thankful for this year in the comments.



Wednesday 151125

Every 3 minutes for 21 minutes:
20 Jumping lunges, bear hugging a medball, 20#(14#)
100 Meter sprint

*Score = slowest time to complete the the 20 lunges and sprint

Post score to comments and BTWB

A helpful guide to Thanksgiving dining.

A helpful guide to Thanksgiving dining.


Ahhh yes, the holiday season is upon us. The season of work parties, family get togethers, homemade desserts, endless bottles of wine, and a varietable buffet of appetizers. It’s the time of year we love because it brings families together but unfortunately it’s a time of year many of us hate because we fear our inability to say no, our inability to show minor restraint, and our inability to consume in moderation. Here are actual things I’ve heard people say in the past few weeks leading into the holiday season:

“I’m going to stop worrying about my diet. Why? Because it’s the holidays, I already know I can’t keep up with it.”

“I guess we’ll see how my body (speaking about it’s physique) holds up through the holidays.”

And my recent personal favorite, the Facebook call out after announcing the Body Fat Test would be coming to Verve on December 3rd. . .

“The week after Thanksgiving- brutal.”

Brutal? Really? I’m about to lay a truth bomb on you all right now. . . if you have spent a considerable amount of time paying attention to what you put in your pie hole throughout the year, on top of which you come to Verve consistently to get your daily WOD on, what can you possibly think you can do to your body in one evening of consumption that it will all suddenly be undone?

I’m going to drop an additional truth bomb on you. . . stop using the holidays as an excuse. Yes, there will be parties, yes there will be desserts and adult beverages. . . but those things will not be placed in front of your face 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for the next 4 weeks. We are talking about single meals in a day. We can all make plans throughout the rest of the day that set us up for success when we get to the party and want to throw down at the open bar and buffet. Knowing that we may have a fairly hefty, unhealthy meal in the evening doesn’t mean we should just throw caution to the wind and eat with reckless abandon the whole day.  There is no need to say to one’s self “screw it, it’s the holidays.” Unless of course you want to. Maybe “the holidays” is your CrossFit Games. Maybe this is what you have been training for all year. If that’s the case, godspeed my friend, and may the force and all delicious pastries, be with you. 

But if you are one of those people that says “screw it” but come January 3rd you hate yourself, you hate your body, and you utter one of my favorite phrases of all time. . .”Alright, now I’m gonna get back on it”, how about you just stay on it. . . don’t leave it. As I said earlier, if you already pay attention to what you eat and you workout constantly, staying as close to on track as possible won’t leave you with nearly as much damage control at the end of this time of year. You don’t need total restraint, a minor to moderate amount of restraint will still leave you in pretty good shape. Here are a few tips/ thoughts:

1) Don’t skip meals. Your body is a machine that must be fueled throughout the day. If you were driving a car and knew you were about to take it on a long haul, would you stop putting gas in it until that time? It needs to run to get you through all the minor trips along the way. So eat, throughout the day, just as you would any other day. Don’t show up to the family dinner starving because you wanted to “save” all your calories for the big meal. It doesn’t work like that.

2) Since you are going to eat throughout the day, the best things to eat are lean proteins. I think we all know that when we get to the party all we want to shove in our faces are all the sweet, delicious, scrumptious carbs. Which carbs? All of them. The alcoholic kind, the mashed kind, the baked kind. . . no one is walking to the dinner table wondering where that delicious side of lean chicken breast is, we want the dinner rolls. So focus on those wonderful protein choices earlier in the day. 

3) Drink plenty of water. In general many of us have a feeling of being hungry when in actuality it’s really us being dehydrated. It helps you feel full and helps with the hang over, so drink up.

4) It would be easy to say those cliche tips like, “keep your hands full so you won’t be able to grab food”, “stay an arm’s length away from munchies”, “eat before you get to the party”, “bring your own healthier food”. . . yada, yada, yada. But none of that is fun and the reason we work so hard to be healthy throughout the year is to allow room for fun. So have fun. . . but keep the fun to one meal a day. Or to one day of the week. Try to avoid the mindset of “screw it”. You work hard, don’t give up so easily. It’s only food. 

Now go forth and enjoy the holidays. 


Tuesday 151124

Run 400 Meters
21 Thrusters 75#(55#)
Run 400 Meters
15 Thrusters75#(55#)
Run 400 Meters
9 Thrusters 75#(55#)

Post time to BTWB

Leslie getting her ring row on. Does she owe me burpees this week though?

Leslie getting her ring row on. Does she owe me burpees this week though?

Schedule Update:  Starting tonight and running until we decide what will replace Hot Dogs and Cupcakes at the 5 PM hour, Skillz Class will have two offerings on Tuesday night only,  5 PM and 6 PM.  This will ONLY be on Tuesday night and will feature Dan’s gymnastics programming.  We’ve had a great turnout for his Tuesday class so hopefully offering 2 classes will result in less people in each class so Dan can have more time to work with you all more closely.  Please sign up for the class that fits your schedule best and please come to the class you sign up for!

With the new year fast approaching and many of us going to be making some changes in our lives, whether, professional, life, or gym related I figured a little inspiration wouldn’t hurt as we move towards making these changes.  From, “Change Your Story to Change Your Life” by LEO BABAUTA

Whenever we undertake a new change in our lives — whether it’s starting a new job or business, or changing a new habit — we tell ourselves a story about it.

We’re the hero of our story. Unfortunately, it’s not usually a very good story — it involves the hero not believing he or she can do it, wanting to give up and give in to the easy route.

Imagine if the great stories of all time went along the lines of our stories:

Harry Potter doesn’t fight Voldemort because it’s too hard and anyway, he just wants to play games and go on Reddit.
Odysseus decides not to make the journey home because he knows himself — he’s just going to give up, and anyway, isn’t the siren’s call of Facebook/Instagram too strong?
Don Quixote never ventures out for adventure on his brave steed Rocinante, because he doesn’t think he can do it, and instead stays home with his books of romance.
Frodo heads back to the Shire, because he believes he doesn’t have enough discipline to stick with something very long.
These would be horrible stories, wouldn’t they? Who would root for these dudes?

The story we tell ourselves goes along these lines. They’re different for each of us, but if we’re not succeeding at something, it’s quite probably because we are telling ourselves the wrong story.

So what can we do if our story is working against us?

Change the damn story. Create a song to sing about yourself as the epic hero of your dreams. Sing this song daily, and be proud of it. Go after the dream, fight the forces of distraction and dullness and self-doubt, rise up to be your best self. You are the writer of your story, the composer of your song, and every moment is a chance to rewrite it, a new draft ready to be crafted into something better.

The above is taken from a larger story that is worth the read.  Click the title and check out some of his other great writings while you’re on the site.  

Remember we have an abridged schedule this week and only a few classes on Thanksgiving.  

Body fat testing coming to Verve.  Click here to sign up for a time. Click here to see what the testing process looks like.

Monday 151123

20 Minutes to work to a heavy complex of:
1 Push press
1 Push jerk
1 Split Jerk

Every minute on the minute for 5 minutes
3 Push jerks @ 50% of complex
5 Strict knees to elbows

Post weight to BTWB

Aries working through thrusters during Everyday Warrior workout #3

Aries working through thrusters during Everyday Warrior workout #3

With the holidays right around the corner be sure and double check the schedule as we will have an abridged schedule for a lot of the coming weeks.  We are open 365 days a year so we’ll make sure to offer classes everyday so you have a chance to come in and  get your fitness on.

We are going to take a break from Hot Dogs and Cupcakes.  The attendance has been way down.  We are going to start a new program in the new year.  The program will have an Olympic lift focus and we are going to design the program in house.  We are developing a template for the program now and it will be ready to go by the new year. Right now the tentative schedule will be Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday at 5 pm.  There will be plenty of squatting so we’ll have a plan in place to make sure our squatting isn’t lacking.

A big thank you to everyone that came out to support all our teams and individuals that participated in the MBS Turkey Challenge over the weekend.  The competition continues to get bigger and bigger and we at Verve continue to participate in larger masses each year.   

As discussed above our schedule is abridged this week.  Weds, Thursday, and Friday we will have less class offerings due to Thanksgiving.  Thanksgiving we only have two classes so be sure to sign up and come at the time you signed up for.  It’s a lot  better to eat a bunch of good food after you had your butt handed to you by a good workout.  

Sunday 151122

For time:
Power cleans 135#(95#)
Ring Dips

Compare to:  140626

Post time to comments or BTWB

Jay getting ready to lift some HEAVY weight at the Turkey Challenge at MBS. We will be there again tomorrow if you are looking for something to do!!

Jay getting ready to lift some HEAVY weight at the Turkey Challenge at MBS. We will be there again tomorrow if you are looking for something to do!!

Please grab a kleenex before you read this recipe to clean up all of the drool! See recipe in its entirety here



  • 12 to 14 pound turkey
  • 1 onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, sliced
  • 1 head garlic, halved horizontally
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 pound sliced bacon
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups turkey stock, preferably homemade


  1. Place a large sheet of parchment paper on a work surface. Arrange half of the bacon in strips, side to side to form a square. To form a lattice, working from the left side of the square, fold back every other strip of bacon the width of a slice. Lay a new slice of bacon over the unfolded strips and return the folded bacon to the original position.
  2. Continue weaving the remaining bacon in the same manner, until you have a woven square. Slide the parchment onto a baking sheet and transfer to the freezer for 10 minutes, until the bacon is firm.
  3. Place the turkey on a cutting board and tie the legs together.
  4. Remove the bacon from the freezer and working quickly, carefully lift it from the parchment. Arrange the bacon square so that the 4 corners are at the neck, the cavity and both wings. Tuck the bacon around the bird, covering the breast and legs. Season with pepper.
  5. Place the turkey onto a roasting rack set in a roasting pan and scatter the vegetables, neck and giblets all around. Add 3 cups of water to the pan. Loosely cover the turkey with foil and roast for 1 ½ hours, adding water to keep the vegetables moist. Remove the foil and roast until in instant-read thermometer inserted in the thigh registers 165°, about 1 ½ hours longer.
  6. Carefully transfer the turkey to a cutting board while you make the gravy. Strain the pan juices into a heat-proof cup and spoon 4 tablespoons of the fat into a large saucepan. Discard the remaining fat. Whisk the flour into the fat and cook over moderately high heat until bubbling and nutty, about 4 minutes. Add the turkey stock and defatted pan juices and bring to a boil. Simmer over moderate heat until thickened, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Carve the turkey and serve with the gravy.


Saturday 151121

For time:
Run 1200 meters
25 Burpees to a 6″ target
Run 800 meters
25 Med ball cleans, 20#(14#)
Run 400 meters
10 Rope climbs

Post times to comments and BTWB

The Body Fat Test is coming to Verve!!

The Body Fat Test is coming to Verve!!


*We have had a lot of folks ask about this, so we got it scheduled. Rosanne is bringing the truck to Verve on Thursday December 3rd for a full day of getting dunked. What does that mean? It means if you have been curious as to what your body fat percent is recently, this is the best opportunity to find out. You will be asked to hold your breath under water for the measurement to take place.

The truck will be parked in front of Verve, we will provide a link to a google doc for you to schedule your time to get tested. Here are a couple of things to keep in mind:

· Bring a swimsuit & towel

· Plan on getting wet (hair too!)

· Water is warm, 90-99 degrees

· Appointments are only 15 minutes long

· Unfortunately they cannot test pregnant women

· The cost for a first time test is $49. Retests are $35 (We will be planning a follow up apportionment in a few months)

· They accept Cash, Checks and Credit

Click here to sign up for a time. Click here to see what the testing process looks like.

*This weekend is the Turkey Challenge!! Verve has 7 teams and 5 individuals competing all weekend at MBS CrossFit in Broomfield. For more information, including location, heat times, and workouts, click here.

*Thursday November 26th is Thanksgiving Day. Verve will have an abbreviated schedule on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. Be sure to check MBO for class times and get signed up.

*Sunday December 6th Josh Wrede at Til Death Tattoos will be hosting the DeVito Strong Tattoo Fundraiser. Pick from a selection of set designs and get inked for $100 by one of Denver’s best. All proceeds go to the DeVito Strong Fund. For more details click here.

*Saturday December 12th Verve is hosting it’s first competition!! The “It Takes A Team Challenge” is an all day team competition. All 32 teams sold out within 27 hours. We will be posting a sign up sheet soon for volunteers to help with the event. Otherwise head on down to watch, have a few beers, and even get in on some fun spectator challenges. For more details click here.




Friday 151120

Every Day Warrior #3

For time:
9 Deadlifts 275#(185#)
28 Box Jumps 30″(24″)
14 Thrusters 135#(95#)
30 Chest to bar pull-Ups

See the full workout description here

Post time to comments or BTWB


This video by Roop contains many new mobility drills to loosen up that upper back.


This weekend is the Turkey Challenge at MBS CrossFit. We have a TON of athletes competing, both team and individual.  Here are the heat times for Saturday and Sunday; if you get a chance to stop by.  First heat times are Saturday, second are Sunday.

Team NANC – Nate – Anna M. – Nicole – Clancy: (11:52am / 3:44pm) (11:00am/2:00pm)

Lazy Has Beens – Ryan Y – Robyn – Trey – Connie: (10:12am / 2:12pm) (9:20am/1:20pm)

CFVerve Purple – Chance – Joe – Ali – Maddie: (10:30am / 2:30pm) (9:40am/1:40pm)

Just the Kip – James C. – Anna D – Kelsey – Adam: (9:36am / 1:36pm) (8:40am/12:40pm)

Unknown – Amy S. – Zink – Blake – Barb!!!: (10:12am / 2:12pm) (9:20am/1:20pm)

Chalk Blocked – Mike C – Meghan – Lillie – Andy: (9:54am / 1:54pm) (9:00am/1:00pm)

Snatch Golbins –  Walter – Stan – Danni – Liz: (9:54am / 1:54pm) (9:00am/1:00pm)

Joel S: (9:30am/2:12pm) (9:21am/12:42pm)

Josh W: (9:30am/2:12pm) (9:21am/12:42pm)

Patrick Sc: (9:10am/1:58pm) (9:09am/12:28pm)

Mick L: (9:10am/1:58pm) (9:09am/12:28pm)

Thursday 151119

Take 10 minutes to build to heavy a 1 rep max back squat
Then, 20 reps @ 60% of 1 rep back squat

Take 5 minutes to build to a heavy 1 rep back squat
Then, 15 reps @ 65% of 1 rep back squat

Take 5 minutes to build to a heavy 1 rep back squat
Then, 10 reps @ 70% of heavy 1 rep back squat

Post loads to comments and BTWB

Jay and Eric, heads down, mid grind.

Jay and Eric, heads down, mid grind.


I chose Prego over Ragu. . . I wonder what other bad decisions I’ve made?

So this post is not necessarily about CrossFit but I think we can all agree there is a mental component to CrossFit and this post is about our brain. . . so there. We make decisions every day, just so I can make this post be more related to CrossFit, think about all the decisions you make when you walk into the gym. What weight will I use for my workout? When it gets a little too hard do I want to quit or do I want to push through? What shoes best match my Lulu pants and tank top? You get my point. I think we can also agree that some of our decisions are better than others. Unfortunately we don’t know the decision is a bad one until after it’s been made. So what goes into our bad decision making paradigm? It turns out, a lot. I would now like to introduce you to “Twenty Cognitive Biases That Could Be Helping You Make Bad Decisions”, courtesy of Tom Hale at I F**king Love Science. 

The human mind is a beautiful thing. Our ability to perceive, manage and express our individual experiences has been a huge reason for our success as a species. However, let’s not get too narcissistic. As rational as we like to think we are, our brain is riddled with ingrained patterns of thought which can lead us to be very irrational.

Cognitive scientists and psychologists call these blips “cognitive biases.” Simply put, cognitive biases are mistakes made by the brain when reasoning, evaluating or other cognitive processes. They are usually caused by an association with previous emotional memories. We experience and perform these deviations on a daily basis, even if we are utterly unaware of it. In fact, in the business, political and marketing worlds, these little shortcomings of the brain are regularly used and abused against you.

Here are just a few of 20 of these cognitive biases that make us realize how irrational and malleable our little meat-bag brains can be:

1) Availability heuristic- People overestimate the importance of information that is available to them. A person might argue that smoking is not unhealthy because they know someone who lived to 100 and smoked three packs a day.

2) Bandwagon effect- The probability of one person adopting a belief increases based on the number of people who hold that belief. This is a powerful form of groupthink and is reason why meetings are often unproductive. 

3) Confirmation bias- We tend to listen only to information that confirms our preconceptions. One reason it’s so hard to have an intelligent conversation about climate change.

4) Conservatism bias- Where people favor prior evidence over new evidence or information that has emerged. People were slow to accept that the Earth was round because they maintained their earlier understanding that the planet was flat. 

5) Ostrich effect- The decision to ignore dangerous or negative information by “burying” one’s head in the sand, like an ostrich. Research suggests that investors check the value of their holdings significantly less often during bad markets.

6) Stereotyping- Expecting a group or person to have certain qualities without having real information about the person. It allows us to quickly identify strangers as friends or enemies, but people tend to overuse and abuse it.

7) Survivorship bias- An error that comes from focusing only on surviving examples, causing us to misjudge a situation. For instance, we might think that being an entrepreneur is easy because we haven’t heard of all those who failed. 

8) Zero-risk bias- Sociologists have found that we love certainty. Even if it’s counterproductive. Eliminating risk entirely means there is no chance of harm being caused. 

If you find yourself curious about the rest of the biases. . . click here.  

Wednesday 151118

As many rounds as possible in 12 minutes of:
3 Snatches,  135#(95#)
6 Clean and jerks, 135#(95#)
9 Chest-to-bar pull-ups
54 Double-unders

Post rounds and reps to comments and BTWB


Fructose is a poison.

Powerful and profound words, but it’s not a statement of an opinion. It’s a statement made by Dr. Robert Lustig followed by medical proof that, once ingested, the impact fructose has on our bodies is the same as that of a poison/ toxin. The above video is one I HIGHLY suggest everyone watch. I know, once you open it you may notice it’s an hour and a half long, who has that kind of time? Should you find yourself sitting around getting a pedicure, or waiting at the DMV, or you’re the passenger in a vehicle sitting in I-70 weekend mountain traffic, perhaps you can pop this video on to pass the time. Now that I’ve watched it, I’m going to say something cliche here, I can not un-see or un-know what I’ve seen and learned. The information was impactful and dare I say it, mind-blowing. When Verve and CrossFit became a part of our lives there was an additional path we began to follow with regards to understanding nutrition and a greater appreciation for what is healthy eating. This video will aid us in our journey of really understanding what we put in our pie hole and how that translates to a long, healthy life.

Dr. Lustig starts off with a general premise most of us may be thinking: calories in, calories out. Meaning that if I want to lose weight I simply need to burn off the calories I consume. The truth is we as a society eat more than ever before, “we all weigh 25 lbs more today than we did 25 years ago.” Compared to 20 years ago men are eating approx 180 more calories/ day and women eat approx 330 more calories/ day. The question is, why are we eating more? We have a hormone called Leptin, it comes from our fat cells and tells our brains, “hey, I’m all full up. I don’t need to eat any more.” The fact that we are all eating more tells the scientific community this negative feedback loop in our bodies is no longer working right. The next question then is why? I can’t answer that for you, well I can because I watched the video, but I don’t want to spoil it for you.

Where are all these extra calories coming from? They are coming from the increase in carbohydrates we consume. In 1982 the FDA recommended a low fat, high carb diet because at the time fat consumption was associated with heart disease. Well food that was cooked without fat and void of fat did not taste as good as it’s high fat counter part. So in order to make low fat food palatable sugar was added. The fat content decreased, carbohydrate content increased.

Let’s talk sugar, specifically glucose, sucrose, and fructose. On a sweetness scale glucose sits at 75, sucrose sits at 100, and fructose sits at 120. Well if we were talking adding these sugars to food to improve taste because fructose is sweeter than glucose we would possibly believe we would not need to add as much of it. Unfortunately the opposite is true, we use even more. Hence the eventual development of high fructose corn syrup, an incredibly cheap, and easy way to enhance food.

Drinking 1 can of soda per day equals out to 15#/ year of added weight. This is not because of the calories, it is because of the sugar and our bodies response to it. We have another hormone in our body that tells us we are hungry. Fructose does not allow this hormone to be suppressed, meaning we continue to believe we are hungry. Fructose does not allow for the stimulation of Leptin, the hormone telling us we are full. So we always believe we are hungry and we never getting the feeling we are full. With that in mind exam the following picture:

The evolution of Coca-Cola

The evolution of Coca-Cola

Over the years our serving sizes of sugar have increased. In certain convenience stores in Texas you can get a 60 oz. soda, candy bar, and a bag of chips for 99 cents.

Average sugar consumption

Average sugar consumption

In a study shown in this video Dr. Lustig makes a comparison to chronic ethanol consumption (alcohol) to that of chronic excess sugar consumption. The are 12 major health risks that are linked to alcoholism, 8 of those 12 health risks are the same for people chronically consuming high levels of fructose. Fructose is a poison.

This is only the tip of the iceberg of information to be gained from watching this video. If you like getting your world rocked, this 90 minutes will do the job.