Sunday 161204

4 Rounds for time:
100′ Right arm kettlebell farmers carry, 53#(35#)
100′ Left arm kettlebell farmers carry, 53#(35#)
10 Right arm kettlebell snatch, 53#(35#)
10 Left arm kettlebell snatch, 53#(35#)
200′ Zercher carry with kettlebell, 53#(35#)

Post times to comments and BTWB

The ladies hitting up some arts and crafts while Brandon supervises.

The ladies hitting up some arts and crafts while Brandon supervises.


Saturday 161203

As many rounds as possilbe in 15 minutes of:

15 Wall balls 20#(14#)
50 Walking lunge steps with medball 20#(14#)
10 Deadlifts 135#(95#)

Pre WOD skill work = Muscle up work from the week

Post rounds and reps to comments and BTWB

Paleo Crockpot Chili

Paleo Crockpot Chili


In honor of Verve’s first annual Chili Cook Off going down today, why not introduce a chili recipe. This recipe comes to us courtesy of  “Trina’s Paleo Newbie: Clean Cooking Made Deliciously Simple”. Click here for additional info and more amazing paleo recipes.

Paleo Crockpot Chili


2 lbs. of ground beef or turkey
1 onion, diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 red and 1 green bell pepper, both diced
1 cup of carrots, finely diced
1 cup of celery, diced
1 jalapeno, minced
(1) 28-ounce can of crushed or stewed tomatoes
(1) 14-ounce can of diced tomatoes
(1) 15-ounce can of tomato sauce
3 Tbsp. of chili powder
1 Tbsp. of oregano
1 Tbsp. of basil
2 tsp. of cumin
1 tsp. of salt
1 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. of cayenne
Garnish (optional but highly recommended!)
About 4 strips of cooked bacon, crumbled
1 or 2 avocados, diced


  1. Sauté onions and garlic together in a large saucepan over medium heat
  2. Add in ground beef (or turkey) to the saucepan and cook just until browned. Drain excess fat
  3. Transfer the cooked onions, garlic and meat to your crockpot/slow-cooker
  4. Add all the above vegetables and spices (except garnish ingredients) to the crockpot
  5. Give the pot a good stir
  6. Set crockpot to LOW, cover, and slow cook for about 6 hours
  7. Spoon into individual bowls. Garnish with crumbled bacon and avocado slices
  8. Serve hot and enjoy!


Adjust jalepeño, cayenne and chili powder to suit your own personal taste. As written, the recipe is moderately spicy in my opinion. You might want to glance through this post’s comment section for more helpful advice from other paleo cooks.

Yield: 8-10 Servings

**Chili Cook Off starts at 1pm and goes to 3pm today.**

Friday 161202

For max efforts
Run 800 Meters
At the 8:00 minute mark
In 5 minutes as many reps as possible of
Burpee box jump overs 24″(20″)
At the 16:00 minute mark
Run 800 Meters

Pre WOD skill work = muscle up transition into
Kipping dip

Post results to comments or BTWB


There are so many different mobility/flexibility/activation videos and guru’s out there; some of them work and some of them don’t.  I am going to now dedicate Friday’s to mobility!  The videos and articles will be from many different sources and my goal is you find things that work for you and that you can incorporate into your daily repertoire.

How to Prep Your Hips for Squatting | Ep. 92 | Movement Fix Monday by Dr. Ryan DeBell

This week I want to share with you a way I got about prepping my hips for squatting.

This is a 4-part sequence consisting of: rolling out, stretching internal/external hip rotation, prepping the adductors, and then locking it in.

I’d do the sequence as shown in the video for 5-8 minutes depending on feel. After that I would do some ramp up or warm up sets with the barbell before going in to working sets.

The 4-part sequence is:

  • Roll out the glutes and quads for 15-20 seconds each (lightly)
  • Hip internal/external rotation stretching (5-10 reps each leg each way)
  • 5 lateral lunges (or cossack squats) each direction
  • 5 slow and controlled goblet squats with a 3 second hold at the bottom in your best squat stance


  • Our 1st Annual Chili Cook Off is taking place Saturday! Even if you don’t cook chili, stop in and judge our creations from 1p – 3p.
  • There will be a Sprint class on Saturday at 9am!!!



Thursday 161201

For time:
Double unders
Strict handstand push ups

Post times to comments and BTWB

Mick and Nicole on their dueling assault bikes.

Mick and Nicole on their dueling assault bikes.


Speaking of duels. . . 

Who’s ready for Verve’s first EVER chili cook off this Saturday?!?!

This Saturday, after open gym from 1pm-3pm, Verve will have several members bring in their home cooked chili for your tasting pleasure. Following the tasting votes will be cast for the best chili in the house, and a winner will be crowned. . . or rather aproned. 

Here are the rules of the cook off-

For the cooks:
1) Chili must be made in advance and brought to Verve by 12:45pm for set up. Please have a crock pot full. (croskpots and/ or heaters can be plugged in at Verve)
2) Chili needs to have a name (one that does not give away it’s maker), hotness level (mild, mediun, hot), and any allergy concerns listed in an email to by Thursday 12/1, 7pm.
3) Chili maker’s identidy needs to be withheld during tasting.
4) We will have some fixins for the chili, however, if there is something specific that goes with yours, please bring it and have it set up next to your chili.

For the tasters:
1) We will provide small tasting cups to sample all. After sampling is complete, tasters may enjoy a bowl of their favorite.
2) You will be provided a card as you enter, this is to cast a single vote for your favorite chili. *One vote per person*
3) Cooks may also be tasters.

*If you would like to be a cook and have not yet emailed me, please do so STAT! (

To help wash down that delicious chili, we will have water and beer. 

To help keep the kids busy while you are boozing and snacking, we will have tables set up with arts and crafts.

So be sure to get to Verve at 1pm, hang out, mingle, talk about macros and if chili fits them, if you are a morning person talk with an evening WODer and vice versa. Enjoy a few hours away from home, judging other people’s cooking. 

Wednesday 161130

5 Rounds on a 3:00 clock

Round 1
15 Toes to bar
12 Cleans 135#(95#)
Round 2
15 Toes to bar
10 Cleans 155#(105#)
Round 3
15 Toes to bar
8 Cleans 185#(125#)
Round 4
15 Toes to bar
6 Cleans 205#(135#)
Round 5
15 Toes to bar
4 Cleans 225#(155#)

Rest remainder of 3 minutes

Post Results to BTWB.

Brandon and his wonderful family.

Brandon and his wonderful family.

This week on our Athlete Highlight we are featuring Brandon Gouker, one of our most faithful afternoon class attendees – please read up about your fellow exerciser!

Aurora, CO


Commercial Real Estate Broker

What do you like to do in your free time?
Spend time outdoors with my wife and our kids. Cook, golf, bike and snowboard.

How long have you been a member at CrossFit Verve?
A little over a year.

What is your background in sports and fitness?
Played football and wrestled in high school, wrestled for two years at a Junior College in Iowa.

What changes have you seen in your body, health and fitness since starting CrossFit?
Overall I just feel much healthier and more energetic. I’ve lost 25 lbs. (with the help of The Paul Buono nutrition program) and am stronger than I’ve been in years.

Has CrossFit influenced your life outside of the gym? If so, how?
Definitely. I find myself trying to make better “lifestyle” choices so that I can perform up to my full potential in the gym.

What’s your favorite benchmark workout?
I had to look this up and I’m glad I did because I was going to say Murph. Isabel looks fun. That being said, I really like workouts with a run or row component that are super long and vomit inducing.

Any advise for someone just starting?
Be patient, be consistent, push yourself but work within your constraints, don’t worry about how much weight everyone else has on the bar. Just do you, scale appropriately and eventually you’ll be where you want to be. Oh, and take guidance and suggestions from the coaches, they know more about this shit than you do.

Tuesday 161129

15 Minutes to build to a 1 rep max bench press


5 Rounds with 1 minute of rest between
5 Bench press @ 50% of 1 rep max
30 Double unders/60 Single unders

*1 Burpee penalty for each break in jump rope portion

Pre WOD skill work = Ring Muscle Up transitions

Post weights to BTWB

It pains me to post photos of those shirts, but they just keep winning. Good thing it's only November.

It pains me to post photos of those shirts, but they just keep winning. Good thing it’s only November.


You’ve probably noticed that there has been an addition to our programming lately.  We’ve been adding in more skill work before workouts.  The goal is to give us extra time with higher skill movements that we see often in workouts, but sometimes don’t have quite as much time to review given everything else that’s programmed in a WOD.

This week we will be focusing on Ring Muscle Ups.  We are going to use a few days this week to go over drills that will help us break down the muscle up and provide drills that will focus on building our muscle up in pieces.  Yesterday we worked on getting comfortable swinging on the high rings and then using momentum to pull up in a good hollow position.  Each time we focus on a new drill it will build on the what we did previously.

Today we will be working on the transition of the muscle up.  The point at which the pull turns into the fast sit up that puts us in the bottom of the dip.  We have programmed drills for all skill levels, from beginner to advanced.  The goal is to have everyone focus on a drill that will make them better at muscle ups or work towards getting their first muscle up.  

The days we program skill work won’t interfere with the actual workout.  An example would be a day that we have a bunch of pull up bar work, toes to bar, pull ups, etc., we won’t do skill work on the muscle up because we’ll have enough pulling in the workout and we don’t want the skill work to be taxing and make the workout more difficult.  

Take the drills slowly and stay within your comfort level.  We are trying to reinforce good body position and mechanics so that when we do get muscle ups or increase the number we can do, we can repeat them.  It’s great to get that first muscle up, but really we want to be able to do the higher skill movements consistently, even if it’s just one each time we attempt one.  

Hopefully these 5 – 15 minute skill sessions help us develop competency in the higher skill movements so that when they pop up in workouts, we’ll have a good knowledge and skill base to know what we really need to work on or at least feel more comfortable knowing we worked on proper mechanics that will lead us to being better at those more advanced movements.  

We’ll continue to post the skill on the WOD blog so you have an idea what we’ll be working on that day and can use what you worked on the previous session.  

Monday 161128

With a 20 minute clock:
Row as many meters as possible,

On the 2 minute get off the rower and perform
5 Dumbbell thrusters 40#(25#)

Pre WOD Skill Work = Ring Muscle Up Swings

Post Results to BTWB.

All smiles for these boys at the Turkey Challenge.

All smiles for these boys at the Turkey Challenge.

The ability to adapt and make positive gains in your fitness is entirely congruent with your ability to recover from stressors. When we introduce the stress of working out, the body goes into a state of excitement to accommodate the stress. Systems in the body compensate and need time to return to normality and homeostasis. Allowing proper time to recover and applying the right amount of stress is an art that, when optimized, can give you the greatest return on the work you put in the gym.

Hormonal levels are essential for providing good results in the gym. We can manipulate them with the right levels of stress in exercise. For instance, after a heavy weight-training session, there will be a drastic drop in growth hormone and testosterone. The degree of the drop is equivalent to the load and intensity of the session. Likewise, there will be a huge rebound of these levels hours later, followed by a leveling off before the next session … hopefully. But, if not enough time to recover hormonal levels between sessions is allowed, athletes can end up in a constantly depleted state of anabolic (muscle-building) hormones, leading to such disorders as adrenal fatigue and overtraining. Here are some tips to maximize recovery:

  1. Keep sessions short and intense Try to limit sessions to 45 minutes of hard work. Train hard and train fast. After 45 minutes the central nervous system is fried. Any high weight or skillful lifting movements will be greatly diminished. Also keeping sessions short and intense provide a large hormonal response.
  2. Restore your fuelMake sure to feed the machine. Strength athletes should try to get roughly 1 gram of protein for every pound of bodyweight to maintain and build lean muscle mass. Your muscles are composed of almost 70 percent H2O. WATER IS THE GREATEST ANABOLIC!!Being dehydrated is catabolic. Make sure to always drink water before and after training sessions. Glycogen stores fuel metabolic activities like most CrossFit conditioning workouts and long strength-training sessions. Consume good fats and clean carbohydrates to fuel these activities.
  3. Sleep is where you grow! Get enough sleep. That means eight to 10 hours straight. Sleep is when the body truly heals and recovers. Extra points for an afternoon one-hour power nap! Use supplements like melatonin to get deep restorative sleep.

So those are the major ones. Literally eat, sleep and train! If you can nail down the big stuff, you should have everything starting to move in the right direction, and you can refine the details from there.


Sunday 161127

For time:
21 Toes to bar
21 Box jumps, 24″(20″)
3 Rope climbs
15 Toes to bar
15 Box jumps, 24″(20″)
2 Rope climbs
9 Toes to bar
9 Box jumps, 24″(20″)
1 Rope climb

Post time to comments or BTWB

Steak Fajita Sweet Potato

Steak Fajita Sweet Potato


This recipe comes to us courtesy of PALEOMG. You can see the full recipe here.  These went down for dinner at the Mattson household and they were AMAZING!

  • 3 sweet potatoes
  • 4 tablespoons ghee, divided
  • 1 sweet onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 orange bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 – 1½ pound hanger steak, pounded slightly thinner to tenderize
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 lime
  • freshly chopped cilantro
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Poke holes in sweet potatoes with a fork then coat all in about 2 tablespoons of ghee and sprinkle with a bit of salt on top. Place on a baking sheet and in the oven for 45-50 minutes minutes until soft and tender.
  2. When sweet potatoes have about 20 minutes to go, place a large cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons of ghee then add sliced onion. Cook for about 5 minutes then add all the bell peppers. Let these onions and peppers cook down for about 15 minutes, tossing every couple minutes, until they are somewhat browned and soft. Remove and set aside. Keep cast iron skillet over medium heat and add more ghee, if needed (just to coat the bottom of the skillet).
  3. Pound meat with a meat tenderizer until about ¼ inch thin. In a small box, mix together all the spices. Pour spice mixture over both sides of meat and press into the meat. Place meat on the hot cast iron skillet and cook on both sides for about 3-4 minutes, until browned by medium rare-medium in the middle. Remove and set on cutting board. Let meat rest for 5 minutes before thinly slicing against the grain.
  4. Place the peppers and onions back in the warm skillet and toss, scraping the bottom of the pan. Place thinly sliced meat in the pan with the peppers and onion then squeeze ½ lime on top to coat meat and veggies.
  5. Cut sweet potatoes open and use a fork to smash the sweet potatoes. Then place the fajita mixture on top along with some freshly chopped cilantro and a little extra lime juice!


  • -Yoga is this Sunday at 11am
  • Mark your calendars for the First Annual Chili Cook Off on Saturday, December 3rd.  Keep your eye on the blogs for more details

Saturday 161126

Take 20 minute to find heaviest complex of:
1 Shoulder press + 1 push press + 1 jerk (push or split)

Pre-lifting skill work:
Bar muscle-ups

Post loads to comments and BTWB

A few of the many fine products made by Masterpiece Doodle

A few of the many fine products made by Masterpiece Doodle


Verve’s own Edie Frylings will be at Verve today with a display of her many fine products created under her professional title, Masterpiece Doodle. She specializes in ceramics but she has been known to dabble in the painting world, bringing artistic immortality to your four legged furry friends. 

Masterpiece Doodle will be at Verve from 9am-11am. There will be a variety of items ranging in price from $10-$125. Christmas is just around the corner, and if there is a Star Trek fan in the family. . . you will need to check her stuff out!!

Here are a few links for additional samplings of her work:

Masterpiece Doodle

Masterpiece Doodle Instagram

Etsy- Masterpiece Doodle


Friday 161125

As many rounds as possible in 15 minutes of:
100′ Walking lunge
400m Run
400m Run with medball, 20#(14#)

Post results to comments or BTWB

New member Leah getting some high reps on the power cleans!

New member Leah getting some high reps on the power cleans!

We hope you had a great Thanksgiving!!!  We only have 2 classes plus open gym today to get your post-Turkey Day calorie burn in, 9am – 10am Class / 10am – 11:30am Open Gym / 11:30am – 12:30pm Class.


  • Edie with Masterpiece Doodle will be here Saturday showing/selling her amazing crafts! If you have a chance, check them out because the Holidays are right around the corner.  You can preview some of the items she will have on her website Masterpiece Doodle.