Wednesday 170104

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

Post results to comments or BTWB

Caroline and her trusty pup Roman!! Say hi when you see her around.

Caroline and her trusty pup Roman!! Say hi when you see her around.


#1 – What is your HOMETOWN?
Denver!  (WOW, don’t find many natives!!
#2 – What do you do in your free time? Hobbies?
I love having fun! Whether it’s with friends, family, or new people! Playing games, going out on the town, joking around and being silly. You know – all that fun stuff! I also love hanging out with my puppy Roman, running my side business – a women’s clothing boutique called Hanger Apparel (shameless plug ;), finding new music, cooking and/or baking, and I also really enjoy spending quality time with my couch. 
#3 – What changes have you seen both physically and mentally since you started CrossFit?
Being a collegiate lacrosse player, I thought I was in the best shape I could ever be in. But since finding CrossFit in 2011, my body and overall outlook on what “being in shape” meant has changed dramatically. I am conscious about what I eat (most of the time) and make getting to the gym a priority in my daily routine. For me, that 1 hour of activity and hanging out with friends (aka pissing Paul off) is the key to my sanity. I view the gym as my sanctuary. I am pumped to have found a type of fitness that spikes my interests and challenges me on a daily basis. CrossFit is an integral part of my life and I don’t see that changing any time soon. 
#4 – What is your favorite workout or movement in CrossFit?
Favorite movement is power cleans; Favorite workout is Grace. I also like anything gymnastics or running related. 
#5 – Any advice for someone new to CrossFit or Verve?
Be patient with yourself and keep an open heart/mind. You’ll have days where you feel like a superhero, followed by days where you feel brand new. But that’s all part of the game. It ebs and flows just like the rest of life. So, embrace the unknown (I promise you will survive that workout), compete with yourself (if no one else), and most importantly – keep it fun! 
#6 – Favorite movie quote /  joke:
Motto I live by: Wake Up. Kick Ass. Be Kind. Repeat.   

Tuesday 170103

5 Rounds for time:
20 Wallballs, 20#(14#)
50 Double unders
5 Muscle-ups

Post time to BTWB

Rowers for sale after the Mile High Sprints competition.

Rowers for sale after the Mile High Sprints competition.

On January 21st we are hosting the Mile High Sprints for the second straight year.  The sprints are used as a qualifying competition for the World Indoor Rowing Championship and last year it was pretty impressive to see some of the times that were put up on the screen for the different distances.  It’s always humbling to see someone make something that you consider very difficult, such as a 2K row, look so effortless.  

The organization putting on the Mile High Sprints is looking to sell the C2 Rowers that are used in the competition.   The rowers will be Model D with the PM5 Monitor in Black.  You can check out the specs by clicking the link HERE.If you are interested in purchasing a rower that will be used for one day in the Mile High Sprints, you can email me directly at and I’ll pass your information along to the organizers.

The rowers are priced at $850.  New, these rowers are $900 plus $50 in shipping costs so you’ll be buying a rower that is less than a day old for a $100 discount.  The rowers are shipped to Verve and then assembled by the organizers the day before the competition.  You will have to arrange pick up for the rowers, but they break down very easily and can fit in most cars.  

If you are interested in buying one, email me and I’ll put you on the list and send and then send a count over to the organizers so they know how many to set aside for Verve members.  There is no negotiation on the  price so please don’t email me and ask, but if you do have questions that are not price related please feel free to send me an email.

We will be having classes after the competition much like we did last year so stay tuned to the blog and check MBO for schedule updates.  I also recommend coming by the competition to watch.  It was pretty exciting last year and I expect more of the same this year as the local college teams show up and put on quite a performance.  

CrossFit Level 2 Certificate Course – January 28-29, 2017

Date: January 28th and 29th, 2017

Time: 9 am – 5:30 pm

Location: CrossFit Verve
3545 Larimer St., Denver CO
Note our new location)

Course Description

The Level 2 Certificate Course (formerly the Coach’s Prep Course) builds on the concepts and movements introduced at the Level 1 Certificate Course. The course is ideally suited for all CrossFit trainers, emerging Affiliates, and anyone serious about developing quality in coaching techniques. Attendees will enhance their understanding of the CrossFit methodology, program design and implementation, and advance their coaching skills.

Come prepared to be heavily engaged. Peers and instructors will provide coaching, evaluation, and feedback as you actively participate in lectures, small group work, and workouts.

Course Schedule

  • 9 AM to 5:30 PM each day with a 1-hour lunch break.
  • Arrive at 8:30 AM on Day 1 to check in at the registration desk.


  • One must have a CrossFit Level 1 Trainer Certificate (CF-L1).
  • It is also strongly recommended participants have:
    1. At least six months of experience training individuals and groups using CrossFit methods.
    2. Completed the Online Scaling Course.

Requirements for the CrossFit Level 2 Trainer Designation

To receive a Level 2 Trainer Certificate, one must:

  • Hold a valid and current CrossFit Level 1 Trainer Certificate.
  • Attend and participate in all parts of the Level 2 Certificate Course.

If you do not meet these requirements, you are issued a Certificate of Attendance.

Click here for more information and to register.

Monday 170102

For time:
21 Russian KB swing, 32kg(24kg)
21 Box jumps
400m Run
15 Russian KB swing, 32kg(24kg)
15 Box jumps
400m Run
9 Russian KB swing, 32kg(24kg)
9 Box jumps
400m Run

Post times to comments and BTWB

The future Mr. & Mrs. Schmidt prepping for their strong marriage ahead. Congrats again on your engagement, you two!!

The future Mr. & Mrs. Schmidt prepping for their strong marriage ahead. Congratulations on your recent engagement, you two!!

What’s Happening?! 

*Please remember that today we will have an abbreviated schedule in observance of New Year’s Day. All morning classes will be cancelled with the first WOD taking place at 9am. Please check out the MBO schedule for details

*January 7th (Saturday)- Bring your friend to Verve Day!! Have a friend or family member that is interested in trying out CrossFit? Bring them to one of our 3 classes that day and let them workout along side you. The WOD is easily modifiable/ scalable to meet the needs of everyone. Please be sure to have your friend sign up in MBO so we can continue to have an accurate head count for classes.

*January 21st (Saturday)- We will be hosting Mile High Sprints. This is a satellite indoor rowing competition to qualify individuals for the World Indoor Rowing Championship. Anyone can compete in this event, as long as they are over 14 years of age. The event will be a 2,000m row for time. While this event brings out all the local crew teams and rowing specialists, it also brings out anyone interesting in seeing how they fair next to these people. Have an interest in competing, click here to register. This event will take place in the morning, class times will be moved to 4pm and 5pm Saturday evening.

*January 28th & 29th (Saturday & Sunday)- Verve will be hosting a CrossFit Level 2 Certificate Course. This engaging seminar will teach current Level 1 holders how to proficiently coach athletes. If you currently hold your Level 1, and interested in coaching classes, this is a seminar that you want to take advantage of. For details and registration, please visit the CrossFit Training page here.

For athletes not attending, we will have morning classes and be looking in to off site swimming WODs. Please stay tuned for more updates.

*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!
If you are a Verve member and are interested in attending the seminar, we’ve worked out a deal with the TrainFTW team.  Email to find out more information about discounts offered for Verve members.


Sunday 170101

Open gym only today, from 11am-12pm!!

Happy New Year!!!

Happy New Year!!!

Saturday 161231

Working in teams of two, accumulate as many calories on the rower as possible in 20 minutes

While one partner is rowing, other partner must complete the following before switching on rower:
12 Burpees
12 Wallballs, 20#(14#)
12 Medicine ball cleans, 20#(14#)

Post results to BTWB

Recipe: Overnight Slow Cooker Breakfast Casserole Makes 12 servings 12 ounces (1 package) breakfast sausage roll (hot and spicy recommended) 1 cup green onions, chopped 1 cup fresh mushrooms, thinly sliced 1 sweet red bell pepper, finely chopped 1 green bell pepper, finely chopped 30 ounces (1 package) frozen shredded hash brown potatoes 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese 12 eggs 1 cup milk 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/8 teaspoon pepper In a skillet over medium heat, cook and crumble sausage until done. Drain, and set aside. In a bowl, combine green onions, mushrooms, red and green pepper, and set aside. Spray the interior of a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker with vegetable cooking spray. Layer one-third of the hash browns, then sausage, then vegetable mixture and then cheese into crock. Repeat layers twice. In a large bowl, beat the eggs, milk, salt and pepper, and pour over layered ingredients. Cover and cook on low for 7-8 hours or until thermometer inserted into the center reads 160 degrees.

Easy Peasy overnight breakfast casserole

National Hangover Day is approaching. For most of us, we can’t make it past 10pm without crashing on the couch, fighting to keep one eye open to ring in the new year. However, there will also be those that can stay out, and party like a rock star. No matter which category you fall into, here is a recipe that will allow you to prep the night before, relax your first morning of the New Year, all while keeping your nutrition on point. This recipe is originally created by Against All Grain‘s Danielle Walker, and zoned for your enjoyment by Verve’s own RKB!



  • 1 TBSP palm shortening, softened ghee, or other fat for greasing slow cooker (9F)
  • ½ pound breakfast sausage (5 ⅓ PRO)
  • 7 strips thick cut bacon, chopped (3 ½ PRO)
  • 194 g yellow onion, diced (2CHO)
  • 143 g red bell pepper, seeded & diced (1CHO)
  • 143 g orange bell pepper, seeded & diced (1CHO)
  • 630 g white sweet potato, peeled and shredded* (14CHO)
  • 16 large eggs (16PRO)
  • ½ cup Almond milk (1.5F, check the brand for equivalent fat content/amount)
  • ¼ cup full-fat coconut milk (8F)
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ¾ tsp dry mustard
  • ¼ tsp cracked black pepper



  1. Grease a slow cooker insert well with palm shortening, softened ghee, or other fat
  2. Cook the sausage, bacon, and onion in a skillet over medium-high heat for 10-12 minutes, until the sausage is browned and the onion is softened. Drain off the excess fat.
  3. Place the shredded sweet potatoes in the slow cooker, packing then down slightly
  4. Add the meat and onion mixture and the bell peppers
  5. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milks, salt, mustard, and pepper. Pour into the slow cooker.
  6. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.


Recipe makes: 24 PRO, 18 CHO, 18.5 FAT (2300 g total)(8 – 3blk servings)

95.8 g = 1 PRO, ⅔ CHO, ⅔ FAT

287.4 = 3 PRO, 2CHO, 2 FAT


*Feel free to substitute different veggies for some of the sweet potato. Just be sure to choose vegetables that will stand up to long cooking time and not get too soggy, like mushrooms, asparagus, broccoli, or winter squash. Also using celeriac instead of sweet potato is a good idea. For my first go around I tried to stick to the recipe as written, but I will definitely be making some veggie adjustments next time.


Have a safe and Happy New Year, Athletes :)


Friday 161230

Take 15 minutes to establish heavy shoulder press

Then, 10 x 3 reps push press @ 65% of today’s heaviest + banded resistance

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FLEXIBILITY FRIDAY – Foam rolling AFTER a workout… WHAAA?

***The following is an article by Dan Pope from his blog FITNESS PAIN FREE.***


One phenomenon that occurs throughout a single game and over the course of a season for a baseball pitcher is a reduction in their throwing arm range of motion (total arc and internal rotation).  Where I work at Champion Physical Therapy in Boston MA they see a ton of pitchers.  My boss Mike Reinold, has a saying for these guys.  The goal of therapy and exercise is returning the pitcher back to their “normal.”

What that means is that we know that if they’re throwing then they’re most likely tightening up due to the forces associated with throwing.  It makes sense, throwing makes the musculature around the shoulder tighten up.  With this population we generally spend time with soft tissue work to help regain their lost range of motion and it works pretty well to restore motion.

One of the biggest limitations I see in crossfitters is a lack of overhead mobility.  I’m constantly trying to regain lost range of motion with these athletes.  Trouble is, I think that some of the movements utilized in their programming is leading to their stiffness.

So the major muscles that can limit our overhead mobility are:

  • Lats
  • Teres Major
  • Pecs

Now what muscles are worked when we’re doing pullups, rowing, pressing and handstand work?  The same muscles we just listed.  For the competitive athlete they’re fighting a losing mobility battle.  The movements they’re training could also be creating stiffness overhead.

So what do we do?  We don’t want to stop training.  I’ve been recommending athletes add in some foam rolling on days following a tough upper body workout.  In my mind this should help mitigate some of the stiffness that is created through exercise, just as in pitchers.

It doesn’t have to be very long.  I recommend just 5 minutes after you finish up training.  I designed the list to hit the muscles that normally take a lot of heat during training.  Improve motion, decrease some soreness, I’ll take it.

Thursday 161229

4 Rounds for time:
Calorie row, 15(12)
15 deadlift @ 50% of 1RM
Run 400m
Rest 2 minutes

*Record slowest round

Post times to comments and BTWB

Short shorts and squats. Every CrossFit athletes dream??

Short shorts and squats. Every CrossFit athletes dream??


It’s been too long since we got personal up in here. So let’s do this. By Courtney “I got my short shorts on” Shepherd

Well folks, today’s blog post picture is a first of it’s kind. In 35 years of life on this Earth I have never worn short booty shorts. . . until today. And this photo is your official proof that it happened. Now I already know what is going through most of your minds right now. . . so the f**k what. Is she really about to do a blog post about booty shorts?? Well, yes and no. It’s not the booty shorts per say but more of what they represent. Allow me to take a step back in time. Before I take that step, I want to give the disclaimer that this blog post is not a way to seek compliments or boosts of self esteem, because as you will soon enough learn, I don’t need them or want them from you. This post is an attempt to explain the benefits of CrossFit and the CrossFit community that can not be talked about enough.

From an age when I was old enough to know better, let’s roughly put that around 13 years old, I hated my body. I hated everything about it. I hated my skin, it’s super sensitive and breaks out all the time, I felt like I could never show off my legs. But that’s okay because I hated my legs. They seemed chunky and had visible cellulite. I hated my stomach, it was never flat, I always had a pouch below my belly button. I hated my love handles, because I effing had love handles. I swam from the age of 9-18. If I wasn’t in the pool then I was covered up. We had to take swim team photos every year, in just our swim suits, the level of anxiety that existed that day was always piqued. Because I hated my body, I hated wearing clothes other than sweat pants and baggy shirts. I actually had full panic attacks if there was an event that required I dress nicer. My mom would sit with me while I cried because there was nothing I could wear, I did not look good in anything. I often opted to not go out. I did not wear shorts unless I was at the beach and they were men’s basketball shorts or men’s board shorts. Since we are on the subject of the beach, unless I was in the water (with my shorts on), then I had a shirt or towel on. I never had an eating disorder, my illness was self loathing, of the highest order.

Sound ridiculous? Who has panic attacks about what to wear? To me now, it definitely sounds ridiculous. It makes me sad to think of how much of my young life was effected by my poor body image issues. Where my negative body image came from is not important, what’s important now is how I learned to not hate myself. That journey began the day I started CrossFit. They say CrossFit is a hedge against sickness. Well, for me, CrossFit was a hedge against self hatred. Over the course of my 8 years of doing CrossFit the pendulum has swung from crying about wanting to change every part of me to overhead squatting in booty shorts.

When I started CrossFit I never thought of it as a program that I would use to lose weight and look a certain way. I started CrossFit to help me be successful at my job as a Firefighter. But much like many of you, after a period of time I started to see some changes. Especially after I started to address my diet. But the only reason I started to address my diet was because I was told it would help my performance in the gym. When I started CrossFit I found myself doing things I had never done before but also things I never imagined for one second that I ever could do. I was lifting weight, lots of it. I was doing pull-ups, sometimes strict. It was the most empowering feeling ever to discover I could deadlift twice my body weight, I could do pull-ups without assistance. I wanted more, more of that feeling of being strong and capable. I stopped thinking about what my body looked like and became completely focused on what my body could do. The pendulum started moving, the hedge was being built.

When I turned 31 years old, I bought my first pair of Lulu lemon tight pants. It took approx 2 weeks for me to actually wear them in public. When I was 32 years old I bought my first pair of Lulu lemon shorts, the ones with a 4″ inseam, definitely not the speed shorts with only a 2″ inseam. Those would not get purchased until I was 33. I’m not sure when I first took my shirt off in a workout, but now that thing comes off during the warm-up some days, Nate style. When I was 34 years old I went on a vacation to a beach and walked around, for the first time ever, in just a swim suit, no cover up. I even let myself get photographed in the swim suit. Several months ago I was talking with some Verve members about something vain and trivial when it hit me, like a brick. I don’t hate my body anymore. I love my body. I’m proud of all the things it does. That love and pride was being expressed over the years by me wearing less and less clothing, by me covering less and proudly showing more.

I’ve come a very long way in the past few years but there was one thing left on the list that I wanted so badly to wear. Something that would just kick that self loathing straight in the teeth. . . shorter than short booty shorts. I see CrossFit girls wear them all the time, why not me. Well, because I still have bigger legs with visible cellulite. I bought several pairs of shorts several months ago and almost everyday I put them on before I leave for work. And everyday, right before I walk out the door I change. But not today. Today was a go. Today I said f**k it. I’m 35 years old, and I’ve wasted too many years caring too much about how I look.

I have never walked into Verve and heard a single person say something negative about how someone else looks. In fact, it’s always the opposite. Every day I am at Verve, at least one person comes up to me to share an accomplishment. You got your first pull-up, you PRed your back squat, for the first time in your life you ran a mile without stopping once. I hear about the accomplishments outside of the gym, you hiked your first 14er, you finished an Ironman, you stood up off the couch without assistance. There is an overwhelming amount of pride in what you can physically do, that is makes worrying about a little visible cellulite seem insignificant. Doing CrossFit has physically changed my body. The CrossFit community has changed my attitude about my body. Verve is a safe place, free of judgement, and overflowing with support for accomplishment. 

My sense of self worth came from CrossFit and the people that make up this community. That’s why I don’t need your compliments, you have given me more than that in the form of support and inspiration. So thank you, it’s because of you I proudly wear so little clothing. 😉


Wednesday 161228

Tabata mash up:
Sumo deadlift high pull, 95#(65#)
Rest 1 minute

Tabata mash-up:
Hang power snatch, 95#(65#)
Ab-mat sit-up
Rest 1 minute

Tabata mash up:
Push press, 95#(65#)
Ring dip

Post reps to comments or BTWB

Andrew in his element doing what he loves to do.

Andrew in his element doing what he loves to do.


#1 – HOMETOWN – Westport, CT
#2 – HOBBIES –  I rock climb outside 3-4 days a week. Also backpacking, mountain and road biking, fly fishing, and of course CrossFit!
#3 – CHANGES SINCE STARTING CROSSFIT – I’ve become way stronger particularly in bodyweight / gymnastic movements which has helped my climbing immensely. Also I’ve seen huge gains in metabolic capacity and that has helped me do things like climb 14ers fast and carry heavy backpacks full of climbing gear. And when you’ve made it through this week’s chipper without quitting it makes you more determined in all aspects of your life!
#4 – FAVORITE WORKOUT – “Helen” is definitely my favorite benchmark workout, I’ve probably done it ten times over the years. Favorite single movement is rope climbs.
#5 – WORDS OF WISDOM FOR NEWBIES – Ask lots of questions. Focus on your squat – if you can squat well everything else is easy. And be scared if a workout lasts less than ten minutes!
Those are solid words of advice Andrew, excited to have you as part of the Verve family!  


Tuesday 161227

Take 15 minutes to establish a heavy back squat

10 Back squat @ 80% of today’s heaviest
Rest 3 minutes
10 Back squat @ 70% of today’s heaviest
Rest 3 minutes
10 Back squat @ 60% of today’s heaviest

Pre WOD skill work = Ring Muscle Up transitions

Post to BTWB


We’re excited to announce the TrainFTW Open Prep Camp hosted by CrossFit Verve in Denver, CO on February 11-12, 2017.  Matt Chan and Eric O’Connor are hosting the camp and participants will spend two days training, enhancing movement efficiency for CrossFit Open movements, eating, having discussions related to CrossFit competition, and downtime.

We’ll discuss nutrition for athletes, recovery techniques, competition mentality, and strategizing CrossFit Open Events. We will practice breathing techniques to prepare for and recover from training. This will not be in “lecture” format, rather an informal discussion where you’ll get the answers that you need.

You’ll walk away from the TrainFTW Open Prep Camp with more efficient movements, a better understanding of how to structure your week during the Open, how to prepare your mind and body before you attempt an Open workout, and heck of a lot of fun in a great training environment.

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!
If you are a Verve member and are interested in attending the seminar, we’ve worked our a deal with the TrainFTW team.  Email to find out more information about discounts offered for Verve members.