Friday 170210

Shoulder press
1 x 8 @ 65%
1 x 6 @ 70%
1 x 4 @ 80%
1 x 4 @ 85%

Then, every minute on the minute x 12 minutes, alternating:
1) 20 Double unders + 1 legless rope climb
2) 20 Double unders + 2 wall walks

Post results to comments or BTWB

FLEXIBILITY FRIDAY – Cracky Shoulders! (that is a technical term)

The preceeding was a great video that gives you a new shoulder mobility drill AND some great tips at the end.  The key to any of these mobility tips is to do them more than once, perhaps several times a week.


  • Revised schedule tomorrow, plenty of Open Gym!! Check out MindBody for the details.

Thursday 170209

5 Rounds for time:
20 Front rack lunge steps, 95#(65#)
15 Hang power clean, 95#(65#)
10 Bar facing burpees
Rest 1 minute

*Score is total time, including rest.

Post times to comments and BTWB

Clancy leading a full house. And with the exception of two people, it's like 50 shades of grey all up in here.

Clancy leading a full house. And with the exception of two people, it’s like 50 shades of grey all up in here.


Who’s got two thumbs and is ready to crush the Open?!?! I hope it’s all of you. Every week we’ve been posting about the Open, trying to get you ready for what those 5 weeks will be like. But there’s a piece we have yet to really discuss, during the Open we will be required to judge each other during the workouts. That’s right folks, you will be counting the reps and possibly taking some away, to make our scores official. I think this is the hardest part of the Open for some people, for several reasons. First we don’t like to give our friends “no reps”. They look like they are working so hard and plus, it’s close enough, let’s count it. Unfortunately that’s just not something we can think about during the Open. The Open is the test of the hard work put in throughout the year, and in the test “close enough” is not good enough. Don’t think of it as failing an athlete during their test either. You are holding them to the standard they worked at for an entire year, and this could be the feedback for them on how they handle their training in the next year. Second, we are not sure what an athlete is doing that deserves a “no rep”, we are not comfortable knowing movement standards and/ or seeing when those standards are not met. That’s when taking the judge’s course comes in to play.

By Brittney Saline
How to manage judging during the Open.

“No rep!”

In less than a month, CrossFit athletes everywhere will echo the two most famous words of CrossFit Games judge Adrian “Boz” Bozman.

We test our fitness in the gym every day, but once a year we keep score on a worldwide whiteboard. The best advance to Regionals and eventually the CrossFit Games, but for most of us, the Open is our Games: a chance to measure our growth, see where we stack up and note what needs improvement.

But how do affiliate owners turn accountants and nurses into Bozmanites fit to scrutinize the squat?

It’s not that athletes don’t try hard in regular classes—CrossFit is not known for attracting people who give less than 100 percent—but rather that having every rep judged can alert athletes to issues they didn’t know were there. For example, Update Show host Pat Sherwood needed a check-up himself back in 2013.

“I think sometimes people don’t know necessarily that they are cheating range of motion,” said Erica Folk, owner of CrossFit Warrior RX in Crystal City, Missouri.

Of course, good coaches point out movement faults every day in class, but they usually work in a group setting and don’t see every rep. But the constant eyes of a judge and five consecutive no-reps will definitely make you get below parallel during Karen.

“You get a little soft with people sometimes during classes,” said Todd Seabaugh, owner of CrossFit St. Louis in Missouri. “You say, ‘Get deeper, get deeper,’ but you don’t really no-rep them in a class. But (being judged in the Open) causes them to think a little more about full range of motion in regular class, and so you see everybody step up their game in classes as well.”

It’s a lesson that benefits both the judge and the judged, said Motier Haskins, an athlete who trains at CrossFit Beyond in Albany, New York. He’s done the Open for the past three years and has been a judge for the previous two.

“I have learned a lot from being a judge,” he said. “I have had to remind and no-rep someone on movement standards, and within those moments I realize that I, myself, do the same thing.”

So how do you train a judge?

Dan Murdock, of Process CrossFit in Oneonta, New York, encourages all his athletes—whether they plan on judging or not—to take the online CrossFit Judges Course. Process is the only CrossFit affiliate in a 60-mile radius, so Murdock said the course helps his members realize they are part of something bigger and gives context to the Open.

“I like to let (members) know that our programming is part of the whole CrossFit picture, the bigger picture,” he said. “It kind of reinforces what they’ve learned, and they understand the standard is across all CrossFit. It’s not just me being a prick.”

The course can also help athletes connect the dots between their movements and a coach’s directives, said Sean Mast, owner of Average Joe’s CrossFit in Navarre, Florida.

“Because then when we cue them on specific faults, they are better able to understand what we’re cueing them for or faulting them for,” he said.

CrossFit St. Louis has sent a team to the North Central and Central Regionals every year since 2014, and for Seabaugh, the Judges Course is the best way to make sure the right athletes make the cut.

“We want to make sure that the judging is pretty pure, because you don’t want somebody in the gym who really doesn’t deserve to make the team … disappoint when they get to Regionals,” he said.

If you are participating in the Open, you will be judged. And you will more than likely be asked to judge someone else. Do you want to make sure you are comfortable making the game day call? Do you want to feel comfortable knowing the person judging you is making the right game day call? Then everyone needs to take the judge’s course. It has several pieces to it and it can be saved along the way, so take 10 minutes a day for the next 5 days and work through it. Or sit for an hour and take it in one shot, but please take it. When you are done, please print your certificate of completion and bring it to me, Courtney. Plus, completing the judge’s course gets your Open Team Cup team 2 points!!

Click here for the judge’s course. 


Wednesday 170208

10 Rounds:
Row 500m @ 2k pace
Rest 2 minutes

Post results to comments or BTWB

Katie T and her adorable kids Arne and Annika!

Katie T and her adorable kids Arne and Annika!

VERVE MEMBER SPOTLIGHT – Katie Tollund (a Verve member for almost 8 years!)
What is your hometown? Barrington, IL
What got you into CrossFit and/or Verve? I started Crossfit  when my neighbor, Leslie Smith, told me about this awesome new gym that opened up down the street on 38th (old, old Verve!) She had so many great things to say about Crossfit and Verve I decided to try it. I wasn’t really sure what I was walking into, but a couple weeks later I had finished my elements and I’m very thankful she talked me into it! 
Favorite workout / movement? Anything with rowing or squats and some sort of built in rest! 
What is the wallpaper on your phone right now? A picture of me, Arne and Annika from right after Annika was born. 
What was the 1st CD you ever owned? AC/DC Back in Black. No, I’m not kidding!

Tuesday 170207

Back Squat
1 x 8 @ 65%
1 x 6 @ 75%
1 x 4 @ 85%
1 x 4 @ 90%

Front Squats
1 x 5 @ 70%
1 x 4 @ 80%
1 x 3 @ 85%
1 x 3 @ 90%

Post weights to BTWB

Until next season!


Time for another local business shout out.  This time I’ll be featuring KinetikChain Denver and Dr. Ed Le Cara. Recently I had the opportunity to visit with Dr. Le Cara and his facility located at 3595 Wynkoop Street.  The office is located about 1/2 a mile from CrossFit Verve.    

I made an appointment with Dr. Le Cara three weeks ago because I was having some low back issues and I wanted him to take a look and see if anything looked out of place.  He was traveling out of the country so I made the appointment for the first day he was back.  I had first heard about Dr. Le Cara from Courtney and then from an athlete at Verve that had glowing reviews of the time he’d spent with Dr. Le Cara.  When I went in this past week, my back issues had gone and I actually felt pretty good.  

I told Dr. Le Cara that I was feeling much better and that my back wasn’t giving me any problems.  Knowing this, Dr. Le Cara put me through in initial screen to check for any imbalances and see if he could find anything that looked a little off.  My left shoulder has always given me issues in certain positions and during the screen Dr. Le Cara noticed that I was tight on my left side.  He wrote down all the things he noticed during the screen and then one by one went through each of the issues and addressed them for me.  He showed me a few at home exercises that I could do that would help with the tightness.  I enjoyed my visit with Dr. Le Cara and will continue to see him for monthly check ins and maintenance.  His facility also has compression boots and other pieces of equipment that can help with recovery.  

Given that the Open is around the corner and we want to be at our best, I wanted to meet with Dr. Le Cara so that I could then in good judgement recommend him and his facility.  I highly recommend scheduling an appointment with Dr. Le Cara if you have any lingering issues or just want to have a screen done that may reveal any issues that you weren’t aware of.  His website and online scheduling are available HERE.  We also have his card at the front desk with all his contact information.  

Below is a little information about Dr. Le Cara as far as his experience and education.

Experience: I have over 16 years experience of successfully treating musculoskeletal injuries for a variety of different types of athletes and patients. I held a hospital appointment at the Veteran’s Administration, Northern California Health Care System in their Brain Health and Wellness Program alongside neurologists, physiatrists, physical therapists, and psychologists while providing treatment for my fellow Veteran’s. I have been the Head Athletic Trainer for various Professional, Collegiate, High School, and Youth Organizations including the San Jose Stealth of the National Lacrosse League. I proudly served in the US Army as a Combat Medic. I was the VP of Sports Science and Human Performance at 24Hour Fitness at their corporate headquarters where they built me a clinic to serve their executives, employees and families. Many health and fitness companies consult with me to develop education around their products. Some of those companies are RockTape, Stroops, OptoGait, and TRX training, just to name a few.

Education: I earned a PhD in Athletic Training and had original research published in a peer reviewed journal on the topic of motor control of the lumbar spine. I am regularly published in trade journals around the topic of corrective exercise and movement assessment. I am Board Certified in both Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation. I hold a clinical Doctorate of Chiropractic which allows me to diagnose conditions and refer for lab work and diagnostic imaging (like x-ray and MRI’s). I hold a Master’s in Business Administration with an emphasis in Transglobal education. My undergraduate degree is in Exercise Science with an emphasis in Exercise Physiology.

Monday 170206

Open workout 15.4
Complete as many reps as possible in 8 minutes of:
3 Handstand push-ups
3 Power clean, 185#(125#)
6 Handstand push-ups
3 Power clean, 185#(125#)
9 Handstand push-ups
3 Power clean, 185#(125#)
12 Handstand push-ups
6 Power clean, 185#(125#)
15 Handstand push-ups
6 Power clean, 185#(125#)
18 Handstand push-ups
6 Power clean, 185#(125#)
21 Handstand push-ups
9 Power clean, 185#(125#)
*Continue adding 3 reps to the handstand push-up each round, and 3 reps to the clean every 3 rounds.

Coach RKB putting in hard work

Coach RKB is getting ready for the CF Open!

Hope all you athletes had a wonderful weekend, and enjoyed the Verve gathering at El Jefe!

This weekend, February 11th & 12th (Saturday & Sunday) Verve will be hosting Matt Chan and Eric O’Connor for their Train FTW Open Prep Camp. Participants will spend two days training, enhancing movement efficiency for CrossFit Open movements, eating, having discussions related to CrossFit competition, and downtime.

Participation is limited to 60 – all levels are welcomed.
Lunch is provided both days.
Cost is $349/pp, including lunch.
Time is from 9am – 5pm

Go to to register today!

*We are adding in an Open Gym after the seminar on Saturday.  From 5:30 – 7:00 PM we will have Open Gym hours so feel free to come by and get your late night fitness on.  

Coming up this summer…

July 8th & 9th (Saturday and Sunday)– CrossFit Verve will be hosting the CrossFit Kids seminar. Further your education and expand your credentials by teaching kiddos the proper methods of CrossFit. For details and registration, please visit the CrossFit Training page.

Have a great week!

Sunday 170206

5 Rounds for time:
50′ Overhead walking lunge, 45#(35#)
21 Burpees

Post time to comments or BTWB

Such a fun night! Thank you to everyone who came to hang out at El Jefe! Thank you to Brendan for hosting.

Such a fun night! Thank you to everyone who came to hang out at El Jefe! Thank you to Brendan for hosting.

YOGA TODAY!! 11AM!! Come and spend some quality time with Kacey and the rest of the supple group.

Saturday 170204

Partner “Tiff”
On a 25 minute running clock,
Run 1.5 miles (in alternating 400m)
Then perform as many rounds as possible of:
11 Chest to bar pull-ups
7 Hang squat cleans, 155#(105#)
7 Push press, 155#(105#)

*Only one partner may work at a time, completing a full round before switching.

Post results to BTWB

United States Army Capt. Benjamin David Tiffner, 31, of West Virginia, died Nov. 7, 2007, when his vehicle was struck by an improvised-explosive device in Baghdad, Iraq, while he was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. In 1996, Tiffner was nominated by Senator Robert Byrd to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. He graduated from the Academy in 2000. After six years of service, Tiffner graduated from the Special Forces Qualification Course and was assigned to the 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne). Tiffner’s mother, Judith, said her son always wanted to serve.

United States Army Capt. Benjamin David Tiffner, 31, of West Virginia, died Nov. 7, 2007, when his vehicle was struck by an improvised-explosive device in Baghdad, Iraq, while he was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
In 1996, Tiffner was nominated by Senator Robert Byrd to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. He graduated from the Academy in 2000. After six years of service, Tiffner graduated from the Special Forces Qualification Course and was assigned to the 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne).
Tiffner’s mother, Judith, said her son always wanted to serve.

Here’s a paleo-zone twist on your traditional lasagna brought to you by Paleo Nick

Paleo Nick’s Butternut Squash Lasagna 

Ingredient List:

  • 4 pounds butternut squash (shaft portion of approximately two squash), sliced to ¼” thickness
  • 28 oz. crushed tomatoes
  • 15 oz. diced tomatoes
  • 2 cups onions, diced
  • 1 pound Italian sausage
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves, chiffonade
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Black pepper, to taste
  • Red Chile, to taste

Preparation Instructions:

  1. Prepare a meat sauce by heating an 8 quart stock pot over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the olive oil and garlic and stir until garlic is toasted, then add the onions.
  3. Season the beef with kosher salt and pepper, then push the onions and garlic to one side of the pan and place the beef, seasoned side down, in the other half of the pan.
  4. Season the top side of the beef with salt and pepper and add the Italian sausage to the pan. Break up beef and sausage into large chunks and fold the onions and garlic into the meat.
  5. Cook for approximately 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. When the meats are about 85% cooked, add the diced tomatoes and tomato sauce and stir to incorporate. Bring to a simmer.
  6. While the sauce is heating up, prepare your basil leaves by stacking them, rolling them and slicing into a chiffonade.
  7. Once meat sauce reaches a simmer, cut the heat and fold in the basil. Season one last time with salt and pepper keeping in mind that the sauce needs to be strong flavored because the squash is unseasoned.
  8. Add ground red chile if you prefer a bit of spice.
  9. To assemble the lasagne: oil the bottom of a 9” x 13” pan and add two cups of meat sauce.
  10. Spread sauce into a uniform layer, then top it with a layer of the sliced butternut squash.
  11. Add 2-3 cups of meat sauce, and then another layer of butternut squash. This time, alternate the direction of the squash “noodles”.
  12. Repeat steps one more time so that you have 3 layers of meat sauce and noodles. Then, top the lasagne with the remaining meat sauce.
  13. Place lasagne pan on a foil lined sheet pan and place in a preheated 375° oven for approximately 90 minutes, or until a butter knife easily inserts into all areas of the lasagne.
  14. Remove from oven and allow to rest for 15 minutes before serving.
  15. Portion out into 8, 3-block portions and refrigerate for up to one week or freeze for up to 6 months. Buon Appetito!

  “Keep It Paleo!”

(Zone Breakdown can be found in the video)

You can check out the full video and directions here .



Friday 170203

Shoulder press
1 x 8 at 65% of 1 rep max
1 x 8 at 70% of 1 rep max
1 x 6 at 75% of 1 rep max
1 x 6 at 80% of 1 rep max

Every minute on the minute x 6, alternating:
1) 10 Burpees
2) Pull ups

Every minute on the minute x 6, alternating:
1) 10 Calories on assualt bike
2) Handstand push-ups

Post results to comments or BTWB

FLEXIBILITY FRIDAY!! – Minimizing back pain in the bottom of the squat.

Flexibility Friday’s don’t have to be all about mobility, they can be about strengthening drills to help you in particular positions.  Clancy turned me onto this video series by The Active Life.  This video gives you some drills to work on to help yoube pain free while in the bottom of the squat.


  • Verve BRING ON THE NEW YEAR outing is tomorrow @ El Jefe (2450 West 44th Avenue
    Denver, CO 80211
    ) from 4p to ????  Feel free to stop by any time, enjoy a margarita and some guacamole and show off your non-workout clothes.
  • YOGA with Kacey, this Sunday @ 11am!!  For those of you new to the gym, this is a beginner-friendly class but also challenging for those more experienced yogies.

Thursday 170202

With a 3 minute running clock x 5 rounds:
2 Rope climbs
10 Deadlifts, 225#(155#)
10 Anchored ab-mat sit-ups
Rest remaining time

*Score is slowest round.

Post times to comments and BTWB

Non weight bearing foot. Non problem. Phoebe coming to the gym and getting after it anyway she can.

Non weight bearing foot. Non problem. Phoebe coming to the gym and getting after it anyway she can.

Let the CrossFit Games 2017 Open updates continue. . . 

Here’s what we hope you have already done:

  1. Gone to the Games site and registered to be a part of the 2017 Open. (Haven’t done this yet?? No worries, click here.)
  2. During the registration process, you chose CrossFit Verve as both your “Team” and your “Affiliate”.
  3. You have started taking the judge’s course. (Haven’t done this yet?? No worries, click here. Please print your certificate of completion when finished.)
  4. Signed up on one of the 4 teams involved in the 2017 Open Team Cup. 

**If you have not done any of these items, are not sure what any of these items are, and/ or do not understand the whole process involving both the CrossFit Games Open and Verve’s Open Team Cup. . . don’t be shy. Email me or come find me at Verve, I will be happy to sort it all out for you AND get you super pumped to get involved in all of it. (By “me”, I mean Courtney) :)

Let’s talk schedule for the 5 weeks of the CrossFit Games Open, starting Thursday February 23rd:

  1. Just pior to the start of the Open, we will begin following the main site programming. We will of course make any needed adjustments based on equipment and time. 
  2. We will be programming the Open workout on every Friday as the Verve’s WOD. So every class throughout the day on Friday is the Open workout. Which means if you workout on Fridays you might as well sign up for the Open. 
  3. We will be canceling the 6pm Friday night WOD and in it’s place we will be simply running heats for the workout from 6pm-8pm. The heat times will obviously vary depending on the Open WOD.
    • There is no formal class from 6pm-8pm. You will be signing up for a heat time. It will be first come first serve. If a heat time is full, you may not simply pop in and join anyway. The only exception to this is anyone NOT signed up for the Open. These people will not need a judge and therefore may join any heat they want. 
    • You will need to warm-up on your own and be present, ready to go on time for your heat. We are starting the heats at the posted time, if you are late, then you will need to sign up for another heat. 
  4. Can’t workout Friday? Not a problem. We will be providing two additional times to complete the Open workouts:
    • Sunday “Re-do”- 11:30am-1:30pm. This will be listed in MBO, please sign up so we may prepare accordingly.
    • Monday “Last chance”- 2pm-3pm. Please do not show up at 2:55pm and start warming up. Please be at Verve before 2pm or at 2pm and get ready to roll, we will be done judging at 3pm.
    • If you cannot make one of the three opportunities we are providing, you MUST email us at to request an additional time that does work. ***I WILL NOT validate any score for a workout performed outside one of the 3 times listed without an email. ***
  5. You, the athlete, need to make sure your score is submitted to the Game’s site for validation by 5pm on Monday. I would suggest you submit it as early as possible and check your email throughout the day Monday. I am often hunting down people to fix scores on Monday. If your score is not submitted correctly, I cannot fix it myself and I cannot validate it until it is fixed. 
    • Again, you are responsible for your score. Verve does not submit scores for athletes. 

That’s the schedule thus far. I will be sure to post the times available to do the Open WOD throughout the gym. Please let me know if you have any additional questions.


Wednesday 170201

For time:
150 Double unders
750m row
75 Push press, 75#(55#)
750m row
150 Double unders

Post time to comments or BTWB

Anahita taking her fitness outside of Verve and having fun!!!

Anahita taking her fitness outside of Verve and having fun!!!

What is your HOMETOWN? Louisville, CO – yep one of few Colorado Natives
What do you do in your free time? Hobbies? I have pretty limited free time between working full time at a school for kids with autism and going to school full time for a doctorate in school psychology (you’re prttey amazing Anahita!). But….with what free time I do have I spend it snowboarding, hiking, camping – really anything outdoors and in the mountains. When it’s nice out I love going to parks and throwing around a frisbee or kicking the soccer ball. I also love going out in Denver and checking out breweries or hitting up the dance floor wherever there’s good music playing. 
What changes have you seen both physically and mentally since you started CrossFit? Physically – I’m definitely in the best shape I’ve been in, but I’d say the changes I care more about are mental… Nothing feels out of reach anymore, just requiring determination, passion, and patience. This feeling has also transferred to my life outside of CrossFit, and because her article for WOD nation resonated strongly with me, I’ll reference Maddie – I feel like I take up space. 
What is your favorite workout or movement in CrossFit? Grace !!!!!
Any advice for someone new to CrossFit or Verve? Use other people to motivate you, not to compare yourself to. Listen to your body. Rest. Eat well. Stop when something hurts (in an injury way). Focus on the movements you care about (and even those you don’t). But not everything at once. Don’t over-analyze. Your body isn’t the person’s next to you. 
Solid advice Anahita!  Happy to have your positive energy here.