WOD Friday Feb 10, 2012


30 clean and jerks (135/95) for time



Thrusters (95/65)




150 wallballs (20/14) for time

If in doubt, choose Fran.



In today’s WOD we asked you to practice something. A few days ago CrossFit Verve had a good post about what that means, and the difference between training and practice. Good stuff.


There are ten general physical skills that you cannot live without. Cardio/respiratory endurance, stamina, strength, flexibility, speed, power, coordination, accuracy, agility, and balance. A deficiency in any of these areas may play a role in your demise. Alternatively, if you are equally capable in each of these skills, you might just be the poster child for general physical preparedness… a characterization that you should hold very close to your heart.

The first four of these skills (and speed and power) require training, or introducing a stimulus over a period of time that results in measurable change in tissue. For example, to develop more cardio/respiratory endurance, you must train your heart and lungs to deliver oxygen during short, medium, and long durations of effort. Or, if you want to be more flexible, you aren’t going to stay up all night wishing for limber hips and hammies and wake up the next morning able to do a bridge-up. That’s ridiculous – it takes training!

But, the last four skills (and actually speed and power too) – coordination, accuracy, agility, and balance – are traits that simply require practice. For example, if you can jump 3 inches off the ground and spin your wrists, you have the capability to complete double unders. Then why the heck are they so darn hard?!? If I wake up unable to do double unders, but go to the gym and during a workout something clicks and you can routinely get multiple double under in a row… did you get stronger? Did you get just the right amount of stamina? No, you practiced a skill that requires coordination, accuracy, agility, and balance. There is no measurable change in your tissue – you simply put in the time it took to do double unders.

Why am I bringing this up? Because I see frustration on people’s faces in workouts that they are struggling with exercises that require a neurological adaptation in order to get better. These individuals have trained their bodies to be capable of a very productive application of force and they possess amazing heart and lungs, but they haven’t spent the hours practicing skill based movements. There are soooooo many to list too! You’ll never truly know what you’re capable of until you commit yourself to a goal, and then spend the hours necessary practicing to achieve a goal.

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“The World’s Healthiest 75-Year-Old Man”

This is a great article. It’s not really about CrossFit, but it’s close enough to share here. Click the link and read the whole thing.

On any given day, in a private gym above Malibu’s Paradise Cove, a handful of men show up to attempt a workout known as the Circuit, more than three thousand repetitions of weight lifting and balancing and abdominal exercises. If you’re thinking that three thousand is a huge number of times to lift or pull or curl some heavy object, you are right. Which is why the Circuit has developed a reputation for causing some of these men to — there’s really no subtle way to put it — projectile vomit. Its twenty multipart exercises are cycled through six times in a complicated sequence, but the Circuit’s ground rules are simple: Once you start, you don’t stop until it’s done. There are no water breaks, no substituting easier moves when the going gets tough, and obviously no whining.

“We’re starting with thirty reps!”

A deep growl booms out from the center of the room, where Don Wildman, the Circuit’s master practitioner, wearing faded jeans and a Sonic Youth T-shirt, stands barefoot, holding a pair of fifty-pound weights. Muscular, lean, six-two, with a trim beard, he looks like Sean Connery, if Connery had borrowed the body of a U.S. marine. This gym, filled with cutting-edge equipment, occupies a wing of his home. I’ve heard about the Circuit, I’ve heard about Wildman, and I’ve come to see for myself what, exactly, is going on in here.

Behind Wildman, Jason Winn stands at the squat rack. Winn, twenty-six, played quarterback for Texas Tech and now races mountain bikes. And next to Winn, sitting at the neck machine, is Tim Commerford, forty, the bassist for Rage Against the Machine. Sixty-five percent of his body is covered in black tribal tattoos. This makes for a lot of ink, as Commerford is six-two and looks as if he could rip a phone book in half.

Wildman himself is a world-class athlete in several sports. In recent years, he has competed in the Ironman Triathlon nine times, the three-thousand-mile Race Across America bike race, the Aspen downhill ski race, and the New York and L.A. marathons. In the sailing world, Wildman made history by winning all three of the Chicago Yacht Club’s famed Mackinac races in one season. He snowboards the Alaskan backcountry with Olympic downhill champion Tommy Moe. Two years ago, he paddled through the entire chain of Hawaiian islands on a surfboard.

That outing was proposed by Wildman’s friend and training partner Laird Hamilton to raise money for autism research. Hamilton, at forty-four a surfing legend who’s been called the Chuck Yeager of his sport, is famous for his off-the-charts training program, featuring workouts that prepare a person to launch himself onto the face of an eighty-foot wave. His body needs to withstand three g’s of force, pressure that would incapacitate most people. If he falls, he must survive thousands of tons of angry water slamming down on his head. It’s an extreme kind of extreme, which is why, in person, the six-foot-three-inch, 215-pound Hamilton comes across like an action figure sprung to life. In the scope of Wildman’s exploits, it makes perfect sense that he’d be training with the likes of Hamilton, someone equally unfamiliar with the concept of moderation.

Except that it doesn’t make sense. Because Don Wildman is seventy-five years old.

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WOD Thursday Feb 9, 2012

Skill Work: Practice something you suck at. Muscle-ups, handstand pushups, double unders. Front-rack mobility, overhead squat mobility. Hollow-body position. Whatever it is, spend 15-20 minutes working to get better at something.


10 deadlifts (185/135)
15 burpees
200m row

AMRAP in 12 minutes

Note: For larger classes, consider doing this workout in two heats so people don’t get jammed up on the rowers. While one group is working on skills, the other does the WOD. Then switch.


“Lessons Learned”

And a few days ago this must-read article (PDF) was posted on the CrossFit mainsite. Seriously, read the whole thing, it’s great.

Don’t get me wrong … you need to go heavy. It’s a critical part of the programming. CrossFit is not a conditioning program. It is a strength and conditioning program. Yet the fact remains that most people I know, myself included, would agree that Heavy Fran hurts, but nowhere near as much as regular Fran. Why? Because once the loading gets to a certain point, most of us have to slow down or put the barbell down and rest. The clock keeps ticking while the power output (intensity) is going down.

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“8 things a new, and veteran, CrossFitter should know”

Mike Cornista found this excellent article. Here’s one thing, click the link for the rest.

Get good before fast

Even if you can keep up with 90% of the class your first day, it doesn’t mean you should. Our CrossFit drug is potent and it will catch you the 2nd day if you don’t respect it the 1st day.

Forget the clock and the RXD weight for now, it will come. Be patient enough to progress correctly and you will be rewarded with longevity and vitality. Move fast before you move well and soon you won’t move at all.

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WOD Wednesday Feb 8, 2012

Bench Press 3-3-3-3-3


45 seconds hand-release pushups
45 seconds rest
45 seconds kb swings (55/35)
45 seconds rest
45 seconds double unders
45 seconds rest

3 rounds for total reps


A few more thoughts about time limits (and scaling)…

1. A time limit does not imply that you should take the entire time allowed to complete the WOD. The time limit is the outer limit on how long it should take you. I believe very strongly that today’s WOD is much better when completed in 15-20 minutes as prescribed (or scaled down) rather than 30 minutes at heavier than prescribed.

But it’s your workout and your goals, so as long as you stick to the general parameters, you’re free to scale up the weight. Just don’t whine or complain when the trainer writes “DNF” on the board after your name.

2. A longer, heavier workout isn’t necessarily a better workout. In fact it can be just the opposite. More on this a bit later.

3. As always, the trainer reserves the right to stop any athlete at any point during the workout. This would only be done to protect the athlete from injury, but if your form has gone to crap due to fatigue, injury is right around the corner. Remember, always: FORM, CONSISTENCY, and only then INTENSITY. This rule applies in the 3rd round just as much as it does in the 1st.



“If lifting heavy weights for partial squats were of any benefit for sports, Gold’s Gym would be fielding the majority of the 2008 Olympic team.”

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Regarding Time Limits…

When a WOD has a time limit, it’s for a reason. It could be to ensure that the athlete doesn’t stray too far from the time domain that the workout was designed for. It could be to help prevent injuries. It could be to force you to check your ego at the door. It could be all of these things, or there could be another reason altogether. Regardless of the reason, when there’s a time limit, it will be enforced.

It’s a free country, however, and if you insist on finishing a WOD after the time expires, so be it. But you don’t get the RX, even if you did RX weight.

Choose a weight that will challenge you but won’t prevent you from getting the workout done in time.

And if you choose to scale the weight UP, that’s fine, but the time limit applies to you as well.


WOD Tuesday Feb 7, 2012

10 power cleans (135/95)
20 pullups
10 front squats (135/95)
20 knees to elbows
10 jerks (135/95) (push jerk or split jerk)
20 box jumps (24/20)

3 rounds

30 minute time limit

If your hands are damaged or get damaged during this WOD — or if you THINK they will get damaged — substitute situps for the knees to elbows.


WOD Monday Feb 6, 2011

When the clock starts, do 50 kb swings (55/35).

Then move to the pullup bars on the left side of the gym. Do 20 squats. Bear crawl to the other side (where we do wallballs). Do 20 situps. Broad jump back over to the pullup bars. Do 20 squats. Bear crawl to the other side. Do 20 situps.

Continue this progression until you have done 5 rounds (for a total of 100 squats and 100 situps). You are done when you have broad jumped back across after finishing the last set of situps.


1. The start and end point is the pullup bar itself — you need only jump across that threshold, not all the way to the wall on that side. On the other side, you must bear crawl all the way until you touch the wall.

2. You can do your situps on the green mats, but you must return to the wall before broad jumping back across.


MobilityWOD #15

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“Anyone who says that full squats are ‘bad for the knees’ has, with that statement, demonstrated conclusively that they are not entitled to an opinion about the matter. People who know nothing about a topic, especially a very technical one that requires specific training, knowledge, and experience, are not due an opinion about that topic and are better served by being quiet when it is asked about or discussed. For example, when brain surgery, or string theory, or the NFL draft, or women’s dress sizes, or white wine is being discussed, I remain quiet, odd though that may seem. But seldom is this the case when orthopedic surgeons, athletic trainers, physical therapists, or nurses are asked about full squats.”

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WOD Friday Feb 3, 2012


5 pullups
10 pushups
15 squats

AMRAP in 20 minutes



5 handstand pushups
10 pistols (alternating 5 per leg)
15 pullups

AMRAP in 20 minutes


WOD Thursday Feb 2, 2012

Deadlift 5-5-3-3-1-1 reps

We’re not looking for PRs on the last two sets (1-1) here. Instead pick a weight that’s around 90% of your one-rep max.


3 deadlifts (275/185)
6 burpee box jumps (24/20)
9 situps

5 rounds


The CrossFit Games Open: A Plea from Kelie Willson

This is from Kelie Willson (the less crazy one). She speaks the truth below.


So I am going to do my best to convince each and every one of you to join the CrossFit Open this year..(Or at least 50% of you!) This is the second year CrossFit is doing the Open for everyone to have a chance to compete. For those of you who were not around last year, or are not quite sure what the Open is I will give you the down and dirty! Basically you sign up online ( $10 I think ) and then every Tuesday for 5 weeks CrossFit will post a WOD for all 20 million (maybe not quite that many) people who signed up to complete. You will have until Sunday at midnight to complete the workout. Justin had said BHCF will be doing the WODs on Saturdays (and maybe Wednesdays) and we will have judges for everyone (to submit your score all reps and range of motion will be judged by a Level 1 Trainer). Now I know by now you are probably thinking…Yea right! Like I am going to finish any workout CrossFit posts! Running through your mind you are thinking 10,000 burpees for time…20 Lsits followed my 50 Muscle ups..! But NO!!! The goal of the Open is to get as many people of all athletic abilities to be able to compete! The first 3 WODs last year were very doable…and even the ones that got a little harder (enter Muscle Ups) were programmed so you could at least do 1 rep of the WOD, which would get you to stay in the competition for all 5 weeks! So please don’t let your fear of not being able to do one of the WODs stop you from signing up! Every week you log your score and then you can see where you fall in place with the millions of other people from around the world!

Now I am going to be a little selfish and tell you another reason I want people to sign up. Every week the top 3 Men’s scores and top 3 Women’s scores will count towards a team total. If we get enough points to place us in the top 30 teams BHCF has a chance to send a team to Regionals!! So the more people we have to try and get us points the better! You never know when one workout may have all of your strengths and could put up a good score for BHCF!!

All that being said the main reason I think people should show up is because it is a great experience! Going through a WOD with the whole gym cheering you on, encouraging those who are struggling through the same WOD you just finished! No matter your score or where you place I believe the Open will make you a better Crossfitter! The Open is for EVERYONE so please sign up!


WOD Wednesday Feb 1, 2012

Do 3 of the following, in whatever order you want, resting 5 minutes in between.

1. 1000m row

2. Annie

3. 100 wallballs (20/14)

4. 100 burpees

5. 250 double unders

NOTE: If you only have time for 2, that’s ok.


Alternating Grip or Hook Grip for Deadlifts?

Thanks to Rob Southards for sharing this long but informative article. Click the link for the whole thing.

Other trainees opt for the alternated grip from day one simply because it is easier and they can hold more weight. The logic there is that stronger is stronger. However, what these trainees are missing is that eventually, when the alternating grip fails as well, and it will, they will have no alternative other than straps. We must realize also that the alternated grip is not a “stronger” grip but simply an augmented one. Eventually, these lifters will have to play catch up with dedicated grip strength (supporting grip) work. The lesson here is train your grip from day one. Using a regular pronated grip, which means both palms are facing your body, challenges your grip and therefore makes it stronger. Saving the alternated grip for when you really need it provides a padding.

Let’s explain this another way. The alternating grip is not “magic”. There is a simple mechanism at work. Having a stronger supporting grip in general means you can support more not just with a double overhand grip but support more with an alternating grip. Since the double overhand grip trains the supporting grip by forcing us to maintain our hands closed or lose the bar, our grip gets stronger. This simply means, that in the long run we can avoid using straps for longer. And if we do supplementary grip work, we can support some amazing loads! But the alternating grip is not the only game in town. The hook grip can also be used.

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Fish Oil

Thanks to Kelly Bruhn for passing along this article about the benefits of fish oil. Here’s an excerpt. Click the link for the whole thing.

Fish oil is well known for its beneficial cardiovascular and cardiac health effects. In 2004 FDA approved a prescription fish oil preparation for treatment of high blood triglycerides (hypertriglyceridemia) 1. However, recently several studies have shown that fish oil also has other beneficial effects, which might appeal more to the younger population, and especially to fitness and bodybuilding enthusiasts. One of these effects is fat loss.

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