Road to Combat Challenge

Hello Cross fitters!

First of all thanks for all the response I have gotten from those of you who want to see Justin go to the World Finals! 

After watching Justin dominates at the local Firefighter Combat Challenge, Jared and I asked Justin if he was going to go to the championship since he qualified, he of coarse said no that it would cost a lot of extra money that he did not have right now to spend on something like that.  After talking to Jared and a few other people who also wanted to see Justin go, I decided to email Justin.  I asked him if the trip was paid for would he want to go to the Worlds.  Of course it is hard for any of us to accept money, but he put his pride aside and said Yes, well actually he said “Hell Yes” and was very , very grateful and told me he would make the Gym proud (which I am sure all of us believe he will)!

So right now we are looking to raise $1,500 so send him, which for one person is a lot of money, but not much for a group to raise, and maybe we could even make a little extra for him, since I am pretty sure he is figuring on eating PB &J the whole time to save some money!  Here are my thoughts so far. Maybe a BBQ at the Gym and sell some food ( Paleo I am sure J) also Yanni has some pizza coupons people could sell and we could make about $10 a piece on those.  Also any one who is creative could make up a flyer to put at the fire stations and any other ideas would be great!  We have some time and with all the people at the Gym I think we have a lot of connections that will make this goal easy! 

So  right now, if you want to email me with any ideas or connections you may have and hopefully in a few weeks we can get our efforts going.  I will try and be at the gym  a few times next week  if anyone wants to talk with me about ideas, and maybe next Saturday we can have a meeting.

Thanks everyone! I know Justin is very grateful for this opportunity and I told him I am looking forward to seeing him lying on the floor after every workout!! I was even thinking we could get him to do a burpee for every dollar we raise J although he has not agreed to that yet!  



Jared and Kelie Willson

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CrossFit Games

There has been a lot of talk around the gym about participating in Crossfit Games in 2011. Crossfit Games 2010 is this weekend. They will be streaming the event live on the internet. I am not sure how it works, but I am guessing that you can go to the main site and their will be a link to the live feed. If you are thinking about doing the games then this would be a great thing to watch, in order to give you an idea on what you are getting yourself into. Most have been talking about doing the Affiliate Games, while a few want to try the individual section. For those who have never heard of Crossfit Games, I will try to explain.

CrossFit Games was invented to find the “Worlds Fittest Person”. The CrossFit Games are the ultimate test of fitness. It’s a grueling three-day competition in which the world’s fittest athletes compete in a variety of workouts. What are the workouts? Each year they change, and the details of them are not announced until a couple days before the event. This means that all year long, the athletes are training for a competition whose format is almost completely a mystery. Most athletics have the luxury of knowing exactly what they are training for. CrossFit games you have now idea what you are going to be doing.

Crossfit Games workouts are designed to bring out athletics strengths and weakness. I like to compare CrossFit Games with UFC Fighting. Most of us have watched UFC fighting on TV. If you watched the fighting 15 years ago, it was a whole different type of fighting. Back then fighters would show up knowing only one thing, it might be that they were good at wrestling but didn’t now anything about boxing. I remember watching a match were a guy came out with one boxing glove on. He was hoping to hit the guy once and drop him. But they put him against a wrestler, the wrestler took him to the ground and the boxer was defenseless. Nowadays the fighters still have their strengths, but all show up being able to defend against anything that is thrown at them. You might have a fighter who is an excellent stand up fighter, but if he gets taken down he knows what to do to defend himself.

This is the way the Games are. You will always have your strengths that you depend on, but you should be able to get through any task that is set before you. For example, I have been struggling with double-unders. Last week I took one day and kept working on them until I got it. I’m not as good as Will, but I can do 6-8 at a time. Double-unders might not be one of my strengths, but if I am asked to do them in a workout I can at least get through them. If you are considering training for the Games, then know is the time to start working on your weakness. Pick something that you know are not good at and start working on it. Come in early and work on muscle-ups or stay a little later after the workout and work on your technique for clean and jerk.

The Affiliate Games works a little different. You still do not know what the workouts are, but you do them in teams. The teams consist of 3 men and 3 women. But during the workout you only use 4 people. You can pick and chose which 4 people you want to use for each particular workout. This way you can use your strengths for the workout.

You need to start working on your nutrition now. Stop shoveling crap into your mouth. We are going to start having a nutrition class on Saturday after class. It won’t matter how hard you train if you don’t have your nutrition dialed in. Remember “Ferrari don’t run on pump gas” and neither does an athletic. If you expect your body to perform at a high rate of speed and power then you need to feed it accordingly. Getting your nutrition plan together will be one of the hardest things you do. But once you get it dialed in it will also be one of the most rewarding.

Crossfit Games are getting bigger every year. A couple of years ago it was a small competition that only had about a 50 competitors. Now it has evolved into a massive competition. This year you had to go to a sectional competition and place in the top 20. Then those 20 went to a regional competition where only the top 4 move on to CrossFit Games. This year the top male and female will win $25000.00 and numerous other prizes. I predict that in a few years the prize purse will be double and you will see it on ESPN. The time to start training for the Games is know.

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A week of Firsts

Wow what a week.   Congrats to everyone this week i know that is was hot and the wods were tough.  Good job.  This week I watched  some goals reached.  So just a shout out to this clients for raising the bar to that next level. Katie great job on Rx ing the WODs and doing this while going to paleo diet.  Andy with the heart of a warrior is now not only doing full pull-ups now but climbed the rope 10 time, jumped the 25″ box and is doing double unders what a week man great job. Susie did her first pullups today and continues to learn and challenge herself.  Yanni and Ave who walk in and learned Double unders and now are well on there way to setting goals to do Double unders unbroken.  Justin who texted me and stated he did 25 Du in a row, granted he didn’t do this at the gym and used his cheater rope lol.  To Will who in his personal goal to do 100 DU is now up to 74.  What a week of firsts great job.

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WOD 7-06-2010

Deadlift 135lb men, 95lb women
Box jump 24in men, 20in women

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WOD 7-02-2010

50 Squats
1 lap
40 box jumps
1 lap
30 pushups
1 lap
20 situps
1 lap
10 pullups
1 lap

2 rounds

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Wod 6-30-10

For Time:

25 Double unders (100)singles

20 Parallette push-ups

15 Walking Lunges (m25,w10) lbs over head

10 Knees 2 Elbows

5 rounds

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The N Word


I would like to start a nutrition log with willing cliental. My goals are to meet on pre determined days throughout the mouth EX: Saturdays after class. During this time the active members would share success stories and tips for those of us that struggle. So for the interested parties please fill free to stay a little after 1200 this Saturday. Also any and all suggestions are welcome after all we have to ad bided by it. Trojanowski

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Congratulations to Andy

Congratulations to Andy on getting some of his first pullups without using any bands. Andy came to us about 3 months ago. He started out using two bands together and doing jumping pullups. Andy has make some tremendous gains in a very short amount of time. If you see him, give him a ” atta boy” and remind him that he is no longer allowed to use the bands. No matter how many pullups are in the WOD.

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WOD 6-29-2010




Do deadlifts with 75% of your max, keep rest between sets to a maximum of 2 minutes


4 laps around building

10 burpees

15 pullups

20 situps

3 rounds

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WOD 6-28-2010

50 box jumps
50 wall balls
40 box jumps
40 wall balls
30 box jumps
30 wall balls
20 box jumps
20 wall balls
10 box jumps
10 wall balls

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What are your goals?

What are your goals? Not just at the gym but in the rest of your life, too. I think everyone should have some sort of goal in and out of the gym. People without goals can lack focus, which eventually leads to lack of motivation and determination. Goals can give you the extra push you need to stay on track.

Justin and Keith set up small goals for each one of us to reach our full potential as well as provide additional skill we may not get from a WOD. Those goals could include being able to do one double under or reaching a new max in your deadlift. Overhead squats, pushpress, learning to master on kipping pullup, a butterfly pullup or even the dreaded handstand pushup are all attainable goals. There have been other kinds of goals — usually harder ones — that have included 1,000 burpees in a week or running 25 miles in a week.

I can’t say I’ve fully mastered or completed any of these yet, but they have planted the seed. Goals help you get to your full potential regardless if you meet the goal or not. Goals push you to dig from deep within and try your best. You will only improve and your WODs will come faster, you will get stronger, and you will gain the confidence and persistence to becoming a better athlete.

One of my biggest fears at CrossFit was that 18 feet of rope you see hanging in the gym. I set a goal for myself to climb the rope. It didn’t matter how pretty or quickly I did it. All I wanted was to overcome my fear and conquer the damn thing. I did it with persistence, practice and determination … and with a little added competition, I climbed the rope — not once — but twice. It took me nearly eight months, but I did it.

Set goals for yourself, follow Justin and Keith’s goals, learn to love them and you WILL succeed. It will make you stronger, faster and have more confidence in and out of the gym.

What are your goals? Post them in the comments.

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What Is Fitness and Who Is Fit?

Outside Magazine crowned triathlete Mark Allen “the fittest man on earth.” Let’s just assume for a moment that this famous six-time winner of the IronMan Triathlon is the fittest of the fit, then what title do we bestow on the decathlete Simon Poelman who also possesses incredible endurance and stamina, yet crushes Mr. Allen in any comparison that includes strength, power, speed, and coordination?

Perhaps the definition of fitness doesn’t include strength, speed, power, and coordination though that seems rather odd. Merriam Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary defines “fitness” and being “fit” as the ability to transmit genes and being healthy. No help there. Searching the Internet for a workable, reasonable definition of fitness yields disappointingly little. Worse yet, the NSCA, the most respected publisher in exercise physiology, in their highly authoritative Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning doesn’t even attempt a definition.

Crossfit’s Fitness
For CrossFit the specter of championing a fitness program without clearly defining what it is that the program delivers combines elements of fraud and farce. The vacuum of guiding authority has therefore necessitated that CrossFit’s directors provide their own definition of fitness. That’s what this issue of CrossFit Journal is about, our “fitness.”

If you haven’t already, read the whole article by clicking here.

What is your definition of fit? What makes you fitter than the next person? Comments are now open for discussion.

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The Chalk Conundrum

Written by Mike Hom from CrossFit Invictus

It began as an off-handed joke. It progressed into semi-serious statements. It evolved into full-blown declarations.

“Chalk is overrated.”

I used to be pro-chalk. I used to believe dusting up my hands to a coat of pearly, bleached white would ensure victory in my workouts and help bring about improved performance. I would clap my hands and kick up white dust to provide self-encouragement. My “breaks” would give me an opportunity to re-chalkify. I avidly thought chalk was the reason I could do more pull-ups. I thought chalk was the reason I could pull more weight. Chalk was the driver to help me press more weight overhead. Running with chalk on my hands would get me in and out the door faster. Chalk was the hero of my work out. Chalk drove me to success.

Then something happened. My hands started tearing more. I spent more and more time letting my hands heal. Chalk slowed me down from the constant re-application. A friend gently told me I was using chalk as a crutch to rest more. After hearing that, I tried my hand at a few benchmark workouts while forgoing chalk. My times improved. I tore my hands less. I attributed my success to giving up chalk. Thus, this began the

No-Chalk Era.
I used to be no-chalk. I used to think chalk was unnecessary. I would avoid using chalk at all costs, even if there was a legitimate need for it. I thought chalk was something newbies used as a means to sneak in more rest. Chalk made people tear and bleed. Chalk was a downright detriment to performance gains.

Then something happened. With sweat coming down my forearms to my wrists one day, I was performing muscle-ups in my workout. Just another set until I was back out the door. Just another rep. Roll my shoulders over the rings, dip, and lock out. And then my right wrist slipped and my armpit met the ring. I lost control and let go of the left ring. Bless my moderate reflexes for saving me from any permanent damage to my limbs. After some rapid introspection, I chalked up my wrists (and just my wrists) and finished my workout. But, I began to re-think my position on chalk. Thus, this began my most pragmatic era, the Some-Chalk era.

Chalk is great when used responsibly.

This means using the minimal amount of chalk necessary to help with certain exercises–mostly pulling exercises. Some people, however, take chalk-use to the extreme and use it for EVERY exercise, which is completely unnecessary and creates additional clean-up work. Is it really necessary to chalk up when doing push-ups? How about squats? Push presses? The fact is, some people view chalk not as a tool but as a habit. These are the ones creating a dust storm around them by over-chalking and then clapping their hands to get rid of the excess. This not only accelerates the consumption of chalk for those that genuinely need it, like those who sweat excessively, but it also simply annoys those around you. A crime scene is not a look we’re going for at the gym. I know the rebuttal is that we at CrossFit Invictus are not a globo-gym and chalk usage is one of the appeals for some people. But let’s be candid for a moment. If you don’t get sweaty hands, how much chalk do you need to get through your workouts?

How To Chalk
Chalk serves the purpose of drying hands to assist with grip issues. It is not magical fairy dust that will make your grip hulk strong. A little bit can go a long away provided you understand where the chalk needs to go. The only part of your hand that needs chalk is the part that will be in contract with the bar, ring, or other apparatus you are utilizing at that moment. The back of your hand does not warrant chalking. The next time you chalk up, understand where your hands are making contact. Take a bit of chalk and rub it in that area. You don’t need a lot, just a light coating. Take your other hand and rub it against the chalked one. Carry on with your bad self.

An Alternative
If you are part of the population that depends on chalk, let me present an alternative: wrist bands. You may see some people in the gym using them already. They are great for the primary reason of soaking up sweat that would otherwise run into your hands. Barring the obvious swagger you gain from wearing them, the wrist band will help control your chalk usage and possibly eliminate your need for it.

In closing, let me reiterate that chalk is a great tool when used responsibly. Over-do it and you run the risk of doing more damage to your hands than good, as well as annoying your fellow CrossFitters. Do yourself and your CF family a favor, use the chalk responsibly.

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Rx and Hydration

Some of you may have noticed that lately that we have started putting an Rx symbol by peoples name on the board after the workout. The Rx symbol stands for “as prescribed”.  To get the Rx by your name you must do the workout with the weights and reps that we put on the board.

Also to get the Rx you must go through with “Full Range of Motion”. Some examples of FRM is, when doing wall ball getting the ball above the line, not hitting the line,  and doing the full squat, or doing the jump and clap overhead when doing burpees.

I would rather see somebody have a slower time but do every rep with FRM, then have the best time on the board and only do the reps half assed. Don’t be offended if we don’t put an Rx by your name, just try to be better the next workout. To get a RX by your name the coaches are going to be very strict with your workout. Take it upon yourself to call a rep no good, we as coaches can’t watch everybody do every rep.

There has been a lot of talk around the gym about doing Crossfit Games next year. Those who are thinking about participating should defiantly start doing every workout and every movement Rx. I will write later about participating in CrossFit Games.

The next thing we need to talk about is “Hydration”. Last week many of you experienced what it’s going to be like in the gym this summer. It is going to be very warm in the gym, we are going to purchase some large fans to help move the air. It is going to be very important that people show up for their workouts well hydrated. Everybody should be pushing for a gallon of water per day.

We now have a small refrigerator in the gym that we have been putting the water bottles in. We are going to start charging $.25 for each bottle. We are not looking to make any money off the water, just basically cover the cost of the water.  And you don’t have to pay for each bottle every time you take one. There will be a can on top of the refrigerator for you to drop your money into when you have it.

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Oh for fun

I had a recent revelation of sorts while reading Mark Sisson’s “The Primal Blueprint.” I reference Sisson’s blog, MDA, a lot because I like his approach and his common-sense advice. Although he is zealous about primal eating, he is not fanatical. In a health industry run amok by fitness nazis, it’s refreshing to find someone who admits that hey, life happens. You can’t be 100 percent perfect all of the time, and honestly, why would anyone want to?

At the conclusion of his book, there’s a page or so about fun. In fact, fun — more specifically the element of play — is part of his primal blueprint. But this passage in particular talks about the importance of fun and how it’s ill advised to not consider that aspect of your eating and exercise.

I think about fun in kind of an abstract way when it comes to fitness. There are physical activities that I find fun — walking, hiking, kayaking, rock climbing, biking, etc. But when it comes to my weekly workouts, I definitely don’t approach them from the fun angle. I work out because I Have Goals. Sisson’s point, roughly, is that goals are fine, but if you’re so focussed on achieving your goals that you’re not enjoying the journey, then what happens when you meet those goals and you’ve nothing left to strive for? Yes, you can always set new goals, but if you’re not enjoying the process of reaching those goals, then it’s just going to be this constant cycle of up and down. Set a goal, work toward it, reach it … and then do it all over again.

Life is not a giant task list where we just check off to-do’s as we complete them. And I don’t think fitness should be either. Life is messy and fluid and flawed and beautiful and horrible and amazing and frustrating, and if fitness is just one component of all of that, there’s no reason it shouldn’t mirror it.

Recently, I switched around my CrossFit schedule so that I could start going to open gym on Saturdays. It’s been one of the best decisions I’ve made in a while. On Saturdays, I get to do what I want and don’t have to do what I don’t. Essentially, I’m there to have fun. I talk to the other members and lift heavy things and climb the rope and try for the 40,000 time to do a stupid kipping pull up. I might do the WOD, and I might not. I always get in a good workout and feel like I’ve accomplished something (it’s hard to get out of the “Must. Do. Something. Productive.” mentality, but I’m trying.) I might be there for an hour and a half or more, and honestly, it’s probably one of the highlights of my week.

I’m going to try to incorporate that same attitude toward my other CrossFit workouts. Instead of viewing the WOD as something to be endured, I’m going to enjoy it — the sweat, the straining, the breathlessness — all of it. So, yes, I’m going to set a goal to have more fun. But I think that will be a goal I won’t mind striving toward.

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May Schedule

The rest of the schedule for May is complete. There are a couple of days that we are going to have to be closed. Please check the schedule on a reqular basis, in case it changes. Again i apologize and we will soon get back to our regular schedule.

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Why do you workout


Before the age of physical maturity at about 25 years, our body is continually growing and developing and during this phase muscles and the entire body stays strong even without specific exercise. After we reach the age of 30, we basically have two options available to us. We can either begin the long process of becoming weaker or we can work to maintain our strength for the rest of our life.

After this point, if the body does not receive the necessary stimulus to trigger muscle growth, a slow process of muscle wasting begins. This loss of muscle tissue hastens the degenerative processes and conditions that characterize the dreaded aging process.

Muscles and the bones they are attached to become weaker, joints deteriorate without strong muscles to support and cushion them; the metabolism slows (the rate the body burns fuel) allowing body fat to accumulate; body shape and appearance change. All body systems weaken including the immune system leaving one exposed to life threatening disease and illness.

Anti-aging remedies and procedures are increasingly in high demand to stave off the ravages of aging but before we complain too much we should remember getting older is a privilege denied to many.
This privilege does not come without its challenges though.

Superficial changes on the outside may help one look and feel better, but aging youthfully really requires enduring methods that improves one’s physical health on the inside. It has been well proven that the elusive fountain of youth that we all desire is actually found in maintaining or rebuilding muscle strength.

It is important that the right exercise is performed if you wish to reclaim your youth. Recreational type activities like walking, jogging or cycling etc will not challenge the muscles sufficiently to rebuild lost strength. Proper exercise means strength training exercise using the right exercises, at the right level of intensity, at the right duration and the right frequency. Anything less is unlikely to give you the results you are looking for.

The really good news is that it does not matter how old you are when you start, 60 year old muscles respond to strength training in exactly the same way 20 year old muscles respond – they get stronger. It is easily possible to become 100 to 175 percent stronger, even stronger than you have ever been in your life.

Imagine the possibilities; imagine having this new strength and energy to pursue hobbies, start new careers, and travel. Become or stay highly active and pack each day with so much more living. The opposite is not to be considered, do nothing and experience less and less and less till finally there is no more.

Start your Crossfit journey now, you will never regret it. It is all there for you, just reach out and take it and make it yours.

So I leave you all with this knowing when I come back in few weeks or so you will all be stronger, faster and in better heath.

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