150601- Excellence


“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” — Aristotle

Above, three excellent movers.



1) 10min to est 1RM Snatch

2) 10min to est 1RM C&J

Strength – E2MOM alt

1a) HBBS 5x@75%, 4x@80%, & 3x@85% of new 1RM

1b) BNCGPP (behind the neck clean-grip pushpress) 3×5@ All 3 sets @ heaviest weight performed on Friday morning’s last set.

***We will doing an ongoing Mon & Fri OH strength cycle for the next few weeks.  It will consist of a variety of OH pressing and shoulder-specific work… even some strict dumbbell presses… oh the blasphemy.  I feel like this is a major limiting factor for many of us. Please keep track of your weight performed. Also, spend a little more time doing some shoulder-specific stretching and mobility work… ask Ana, she’ll line you out.  As usual, Monday’s we’ll be putting a heavy barbell on our back.


“Frun”… get it???  I should be PUNished.

3RFT of…

5x Thruster @135/95#

10x Pullup

200m run

CFV Monday WOD

10 RFT of:
5 pull-ups
5RFT of:
10 sit-ups
10 back ext.
2RFT of:
25 wallball (20/14)
25 box jumps (24/20)
rest as needed between couplets.  score is time for each couplet (3 scores)



150529 – KBS

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The lowly kettle bell.  Easily one of the more incorrectly used tools at the gym and one with the most potential to develop explosive power in the Oly lifts and a great/safe conditioning tool.

I’ve been guilty of this… a new person comes to the gym.  Me “You ever swing a kettle bell before?”  Them “Yeah all the time at the wellness center.”… and then I look up during the WOD and whatever movement they are doing, it AIN’T no KBS.  The KBS per se is NOT a lift… it’s a violent SWING initiated by explosive hip extension.  All too many times I see one of two common KBS faults watching beginners, and experienced CFers alike who refuse to correct their movement.

1) Their KBS resembles a half range of motion sumo deadlift high-pull (SDHP).  The athlete literally attempts to “lift” the KB using their arms and shoulders.  Their elbows are bent and above the KB… and the KB is upright.  It’s not that this is a bad movement, it’s just not a KBS… it’s a SDHP.

2) The athlete excessively bends their knees into a half squat with their chest upright, then basically jumps to get the bell moving.  Again, this is not a bad movement, but it’s not a KBS.

While the traditional (Russian) swing is only brought to eye-level, CrossFit established ROM standards that could be more easily judged and required a greater ROM of the shoulders… hence the OH (American) swing was born.  From a conjugate method standpoint, the KBS is invaluable to any olympic lifter… IF done properly.  Both the Snatch and the C&J have violent hip extension as the core of the lift… if you can’t fully open your hips, you’ll never be a good lifter.

Done properly the bottom of the swing looks like the bottom a perfect “good morning” with the bell sitting behind and under the athlete.  Their spine is hard, lumbar curved, and close to parallel with the floor.  Their head is upright, knees back, and hamstrings tight.  This is essentially the position we want to be in at the top of the first pull of our snatch/c&j.  I’ve had people argue with me that “you’re lifting it with you back!”… yes, but the back is it a strong static position… it’s dorsiflexed and not moving… your glutes and hamstrings are doing the actual dynamic motion.  Also, in this position, because of the KB’s motion backwards, there is no shearing forces placed on the vertebrae… all the force is generated inline with the spine. i.e.. compression.

From this position the athlete merely explosively opens their hips. It’s not a squat.  This explosive extension forces the bell into an arc with significant velocity.  From here it is a finesse movement… controlling the bell’s momentum to bring it into a locked out OH position with the bottom of the bell facing the ceiling.  Only then are the knees locked out.



Notice Martin’s posture above.  His back is bent over but his lumbar curve is intact.  His spine is in as strong of an anatomical position relative to the bell as possible.  The bell is behind him.  Knees back, hamstrings tight, and the look on his face tells you he’s about to drive this freakin’ bell to the ceiling using a violent hip thrust.


Shayna showing a solid finish position.  Knees, hips, and elbows locked out… ears in front of her arms with the bell upside down.

If you’re one of these people who “lift” the KB with your arms… or try to keep your chest up and “squat” the bell up, please stop immediately. If you don’t know if you are, ask a coach.  Save those movements for SDHP and squat-day.  Learn to use your posterior chain… i.e. your hamstrings and glutes, the biggest and strongest muscles in your body.  Don’t be scared to bend over with a weight in your hands, but learn what a hard/proud spine feels like.  Be safe.  Be efficient.  Embrace the lowly KB.

“Improve your quality of life.  Frequently get seriously out of breath.”

Outlaw BBG

1) 5x 2 Snatch from blocks (just above knee).  Work up to a max double for the day.  Rest as needed.

2) 5x 2 Clean from blocks (just above knee) + 1x Split jerk.  Work up to a max double for the day.  Rest as needed.

Strength – E2MOM alt

1a) Front squat 3×3 @ 1RM C&J

1b) BNCGPP (Behind the neck Clean-grip push press) 3×3 AHAP



30x C&J @135/95#


150527 – Scooter Weather


Time to put some wind on it.

Outlaw BBG

EMOM for 7min each.

*When doing these Power Snatch and Power clean Sessions, really focus on a violent second-pull then driving your head through during the turnover.  Also, ideally a “miss” constitutes having to go to rock-bottom to receive the bar… THIS is what we’re striving for… going to rock-bottom as our “go to” when our pull isn’t powerful enough to get it to power-position height.  If you find yourself going into a split or sumo stance, STOP IMMEDIATELY and take off weight.  Drill in going to the bottom when things get hard or else you are being counter productive.

1) 3x T&G Power snatch.  Start @60% and add 5-10# each set until a miss occurs, then take off 5-10# and finish the 7min.

2) 2x Power clean + 1x Jerk.  Start @60% and add 5-10# each set until a miss occurs, then take off 5-10# and finish the 7min.


“Tommy Mac” – 30min cap

2RFT of…

12x Burpees
12x Thruster 115/75#
12x Burpees
12x Power Snatch 115/75#
12x Burpees
12x Push Jerks 115/75#
12x Burpees
12x Hang Clean (full squat) 115/75#
12x Burpees
12x OHS 115/75#


150526 – Needs to Die

5 Fitness Terms That Need to Die

How to Hydrate Your Functional Core Cardio Muscles


  1. People worry too much about “core training” – a term that’s abused and overused. Stop it. The body is one piece.
  2. As the word “functional” increased in popularity, so did the people doing the most dysfunctional things you can think of in the gym.
  3. Throwing around the term “cardio” is often an attempt to make exercise sound more pretentious. And saying “hydrate” instead of “drink” is just silly. (continue reading)


3mi tempo run (10k race-pace)



Deadlift 5, 5, 5, 5, 5




150525 – Memorial Day & Burpees

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Have a great Memorial Day Weekend

Outlaw BBG

1) 5x 1 Snatch @80%

2) 5×1 C&J @80%

Strength – E2MOM for 3 sets

HBBS 5x @75%, 4x @80%, & 3x @85% of new 1RM


“Tommy V”

21x Thruster @115/80#

12x rope climb

15x Thruster

9x rope climb

9x Thruster

6x rope climb

And congratulations to the finishers of this year’s Burpee-Challenge.  I’ve always said it takes a “special” (aka insane) kind of person to teach middle school.  It definitely takes a special kind of person to do 5050x Burpees.  Jammie needs to see a doctor.  Great Job!


Jammie, Doug, and Heather.  Burpee Aficionados.


150522 – Fotjik


Big week for Em.  She Rxd “Fran”, got her first rope climb, and… what was the other thing???

Outlaw BBG

1) 7x 2 Snatch from blocks (just above knee).  Work up to a max double for the day.  Rest as needed.

2) 7x 2 Clean from blocks (just above knee) + 1x Split jerk.  Work up to a max double for the day.  Rest as needed.

Conditioning – 15min cap


10/7x HSPU

400m ME run (unless it’s raining… ME 90sec row or AirDyne)

60sec rest