Week of 11/25-11/30

CrossFitters,

It’s officially Thanksgiving week! Can’t believe it. Look at all the progress everyone has made since they started, and think about all the potential for growth in the future! So much possibility! I don’t know about you guys, but I’m pumped.

The schedule for this week has been altered somewhat due to the holidays. Please pay attention to the announcements below:

The Monday (11/25) classes will be held at 9:30pm and 12:30pm. Christina has a doctor’s appointment which may run into the noon class, so it’s been pushed back half an hour. Tuesday and Wednesday will run as normal. Thursday (Thanksgiving morning) we will have an 8am Turkey Day WOD. Afterwards, for those who are interested or have signed up, several athletes are running the Turkey Trot over in Magnuson Park at 10am. Should be fun! There will be no classes on Friday. Saturday will be a normal class at 7:30am.

Also, for those who are interested, I’m playing with a potential 7:30am class Tuesday (11/26) morning. Should there be a couple people who commit, the class can become permanent. There’s space both Tuesday and Thursday for a morning class, so email me and let me know if this is something anybody wants!

The topic this week is increasing the amount of weight on that bar! Oh yea! Over the past few weeks we’ve done some PR (Personal Record) work with one rep maximum efforts. Many of you found your 1RM Front Squat and 1RM Power Clean. For those of you in the 4pm Friday class, we’ve spent time on our back squats and deadlifts. Lifting heavy and finding your PR for whatever lift we’re doing is a fantastic way of truly seeing how amazing your body really is. It’s easy to estimate and say, well shucks, I think I can squat 100 pounds. But tell me this, isn’t it an awesome feeling to put 100 pounds on the bar and squat? Of course it is! Continuing with that thought, the stronger you become, the more weight you’ll need to use in our daily WODs. Do you generally just use the bar for everything? Add fives on each side and see how you feel. Sometimes it’s not the right time to move up. Sometimes it is. But you’ll never know unless you try 🙂 Initially when you move up weight, the workouts are going to feel harder, your body more tired. But that’s ok! All part of the process. Soon that new weight won’t feel so heavy, and it’ll be time to move up again.

As always, email me with any questions! Please email me if 7:30am is something you’re interested in, and don’t forget, tomorrow’s formally noon class will be held at 12:30.

Tyler

Week of 11/18-11/23

CrossFitters,

I hope everyone had a great weekend! The weather certainly took a turn for the chilly, but I managed with several layers of long sleeve shirts and my ski jacket. Hopefully the weather warms up soon because we have some running this week, and I know you’re excited 🙂

I’ve been asked this question several times over the past few weeks and I figured it’s high time I put it in an email: what to eat before and after working out. Let me first include what I eat, and after I’ll put forth some recommendations. Again, as with dieting, it’s very personal. What works for someone won’t work for someone else, and visa-versa. The best advice I can give is to experiment. Try it out! Looking at the big picture—our lives—several weeks here and there of new foods won’t harm you in the long run. And hey, if it’s healthy anyway, what could it hurt?

Unless I workout at 6am, I eat a large bowl of oatmeal mixed with almond butter and blueberries. After my workout, I drink whey protein mixed with almond milk. Depending on the day, I’ll also eat an almond butter and jelly sandwich or a protein bar after my second or third workout.

It’s important to have something in your stomach before coming to class. Since our earliest class is 9:30, I’d suggest eating no later than an hour before. If you have a sensitive stomach, push that to an hour and a half or two hours. Most of the energy for your workout should come from the previous day, but the supply of energy to your body is continuous, hence the need to eat, and consistently. After working out, eat or drink something. Some people drink protein shakes, some have a large meal, some have fruit smoothies. There’s some debate as to what’s  best. But, what’s clear is that you need something. Women in general have a fear of protein. “It’s going to make me bulky!” No, it won’t. But it will help your muscles repair, which allows you to become stronger, faster. So, for the next couple weeks, bring a protein shake with you to class and drink it right after. See if it helps! If you don’t notice a difference, switch it up. Time is on your side.

If you have any questions, let me know! Hope to see everyone this week.

Tyler

Week of 11/11-11/16

CrossFitters,

I’d first off like to say a big thank you to everyone who reached out and wished Christina well. She’s doing much better today. We’re going to see a specialist in the next few days and from there, it’s just rest and recovery. It’s definitely a bummer, but her spirits are good and she’ll still be coming in when she can to cheer and motivate 🙂

Secondly, classes will run normal hours this week, Monday through Friday 9:30am and 12pm, with Friday having an additional 4pm and 5:30pm class.

Thirdly, since tomorrow is Veteran’s Day, we’ll be doing a Hero WOD. CrossFit is known (in part) for their named workouts. In class we’ve done a few: Annie, Fran, Karen. These women workouts are named in honor of some of the original women in CrossFit, the ones who helped Greg Glassman (CrossFit founder) build and grow the sport into what it is today. I also like this quote from Glassman, which succinctly sums up those female workouts as well: “Anything that left you flat on your back, looking up at the sky asking ‘What just happened to me’? deserved a female’s name.” Funny, and for those who’ve done Fran or Karen, incredibly true.

Along the same lines, Hero WODs are named as well. CrossFit began the tradition of naming intense, grueling workouts after fallen soldiers who used CrossFit to prepare themselves for combat. I’d tell you the name of the solider we’re honoring tomorrow, but I know some of you who’d rush online and look it up. So instead I’ll keep everyone in suspense 🙂 Hero WOD’s aren’t done often, but when they are, it’s important to think about why we’re putting ourselves through the pain. Tomorrow we’re doing it because we’re patriots and we’re honoring the life of a man who gave everything for us to have the opportunity to CrossFit day in and day out. I’ve lived in a third world country and rest assured, those opportunities don’t exist. So when tomorrow comes and you’re tired and spent and ready to quit, keep that thought firmly in your mind. It helps.

Looking forward to a great week! Thanks again for all the well wishes. It means a lot to Christina.

Tyler

Week of 11/4-11/9

CrossFitters, We’ve arrived at the beginning of another week! I love Sundays because, for me, they signify opportunity. It’s a new week, a new day, a new chance to work on something that maybe needed fixed, or to begin that project that you’ve been putting off. You have seven days of opportunity ahead of you. So get to it people!

This week I want to expand on something I touched on briefly in an email many weeks ago: rest. We all need it! There comes a point in everyone, from the CrossFit newcomer to the best athlete in the world, where their bodies need a small (or large) break in order to maintain their fitness. For some people, this is half a day. For others—the vast majority of human beings on this planet, in fact—it’s a full day if not more. Now the big question . . . What exactly is rest? Bear with me, because the answer is not as obvious as it first appears.

Rest varies from person to person, depending on a lot of factors not limited to age, fitness level and number of days of continuous exercise. There’s also this term “active rest” that gets tossed around. I personally suggest one full day of rest per week. One day where you don’t go to the gym, don’t run, don’t sprint. One day where you go for a light walk (under a two hours continuously on your feet), maybe toss the baseball around with some friends. I wouldn’t consider a three and a half hour backyard football game rest, nor would I consider an eight mile roundtrip hike up and down a mountain rest either. I would consider yoga as a rest day (for the yogis who consider yoga a ‘workout’ I don’t disagree, but it’s not a CrossFit workout by any stretch).

What’s more, rest is mental. You need to rest your mind. Go out and have some fun, go to a party, have a few drinks (key word: few). The more you do CrossFit the easier it is to fall into the trap of never wanting to eat bad and feeling guilty for missing a workout. But it’s ok to eat bad and to miss a workout on occasion. Don’t fret! As they say in Spanish, tranquilo. As for me, I rest one full day per week. I sit on my keester, watch a couple movies, and veg out. Usually that day is Saturday but it’ll vary depending on my schedule. I also allow myself one cheat day, which usually ends up being Friday evening. And you best believe when Friday hits, I’m all over it. Pizza, ice cream, cupcakes—it’s all fair game. It allows me to relax and let down my guard and not worry about if something is Paleo or not Paleo or what have you.

I used to not rest, thinking every day not spent in the gym was a wasted day. But I hit a point where my fitness stopped improving and so I changed. Having one full day of rest, for me, is magic. I’m excited to hit the gym on Sunday and it reminds me why I love CrossFit so much. So see what works for you! If you’re new to CrossFit, start with a couple days of rest per week to allow those sore muscles to heal. If you’re more experienced, take a day. But please please please promise me that you will rest. You need it, especially those of you out there who think you don’t. Looking forward to seeing everyone this week! Tyler