Saturday 1-31-15

For 20 mins alternate between solid TnG deadlifts (increasing weight) and 2 wall walks or 5 strict HSPU
Team WOD:
Run 200m each (relay)
150 Thrusters (75/55)
100 Chest-to-bar pull-ups
50 Box Jumps (30″/24″)
Run 200m each (relay)

1 person works
1 person holds 115 lbs (overhead/at shoulders)
1 person rests
* If the bar hits the ground, 10 burpees for each person!

Blue Friday 1-30-15

2 mins banded hip stretch
2 mins calf/shin smash

High Hang Clean + Hang Clean (both full squats.
A) Work to a heavy single in 10 mins
B) Take 70% and do one every 45 seconds for 10 rounds

6 rounds of:
Max Pull-up elements

Every round you break you have to accomplish:
1) 30 KBS
2) 80 double unders
3) Run 400m
4) 30 push-ups
5) 80 mountain climbers
6) Run 400m

Score is reps and time.

Thursday 1-29-15

Lat Openers
Foam Roll Serratus
Throne T-Spine Stretch

Strict Press
3 sets of 5 warmups
5 reps @ 68%
3 reps @ 77%
1+ reps @ 86%

I lied.

Row Sprints (Yep)
6 x 300m with 90 secs

Wednesday 1-28-15


Foam roll aductors and calves
Ankle band stretch – both ways


5 sets
A1) Bulgarian Split Squats (barbell, increasing weight)
A2) 10 Back Extensions


Box Jumps
Air squats (bottom-to-bottom)
Hollow holds


Five reasons why you should do the 2015 Crossfit Open

Yes, this means YOU! If you are unaware of what the Crossfit Open is, here’s a breakdown for you:

It is five workouts, spread out over five weeks. The workouts are announced live, from random Crossfit affiliates across the country, and you then have until the following weekend to complete the workout. People within the gym judge the workouts, and then your score is posted so you may see where you stack up against your region and the world!

Here are the top reasons why you should enter…

#5 Like all of Crossfit, you may now scale it.
This is a new addition this year, and even more of a reason for new people to try it out. We have not seen this in the past, so it is a very exciting year to do your first Open! These workouts will be geared towards newer members, and it will be a great way to start to track your progress over the coming years (more on this in a bit).

#4 Competition
I truly believe this is one of the integral parts of community and Crossfit. When you compete with your friends, it helps to create a deeper friendship, and it shows you what you may truly do. It is very common for people to get their first double under, chest to bar pull up, or other feat, because of the added competitive edge the Open provides.  The Open is a great way to bring out the inner competitor that may have been lost since high school or college level sports.  For many, it is the first time they have been in a true physical competition, and it is amazing what it does to their self-confidence!

#3 Community
As many of you know, Crossfit is a great way to get into shape, but it is also a great way to spend some time with friends and family. The workouts will be posted each week, but on Saturdays, there will be the opportunity for everyone to do it in heats. If you are a morning person, this is a great way to meet and interact with the evening people, and vice versa. You would be amazed at how much a simple 7 minutes of burpees (no joke), can bond you and the person who just did it beside you.

#2 It’s FUN!
The Crossfit Open can be one of the most fun things you will do in Crossfit. We have some members who cannot wait for this annual event to happen, because of what it brings out in them. It is a different type of workout when your score means a bit more, and when you have lots of the gym doing it at the same time. The community aspect of the workouts helps everyone get through them, and the great feelings shared afterwards only add to the day.  Of course, having some food and drinks at the end of the Open is always enjoyable (have to eat!), and it is a great way to socialize and talk about the workouts, Crossfit, the Seahawks, food, or just life in general!

#1 Personal Growth
This is the most important of all, simply because it is in some way shape or form, the reason we are doing Crossfit. Whether it is accomplishing a new PR, seeing where you stack up in the region, learning a new skill or setting a baseline for the rest of your life, it is all growth. We are in the gym to improve our lives in various ways. The Crossfit Open is for all people, and I cannot wait to see all of the accomplishments achieved this year!

I look forward to seeing what our gym can do this year, and if you have any questions, please feel free to ask myself or any of the other coaches.

To sign up, and for more information click the link below:

For members wanting even more fun during the Open, talk to a coach about how to become a Crossfit Open Judge.

Tuesday 1-27-15

Tricep Smash
T-Spine Peanut

Back Squat (Wendler Week 3)

3 warmup sets of 5 reps
5 @ 68%
3 @ 77
1+ @ 86

12 Thrusters (95/65)
Sprint 200m
Rest 1 min

Monday 1-26-14


Throne T-Spine Opener
Banded Hip Opener


8 mins to review and warm up Power Snatch
10 mins to work towards a heavy triple

Cleans (135/95)
Ring Dips

Friday 1-23-15


T-Spine Foam Roller
Hipmo Cycle
Throne Stretch (Who names these?) T-Spine Opener
Ankle Mob


Snatch Balance technique and review
EMOTM for 12 mins
1 Snatch Balance + 2 OHS


5 min AMRAP (FAST!)
3 Pullups
5 Burpees
10 Mountain Climbers

Thursday 1-22-15

Banded Pec Stretch
Shoulder Angel with Lacrosse Ball



Strict Press
5-5-5 @ 55%
3 @ 65
3 @ 70
3+ @ 80

(Round down)


AMRAP for 17 mins
10 Burpees to a 6″ target (both hands have to touch target)
20 Goblet Squats (53/35)
30 Double-unders (60 singles)

Wednesday 1-21-15


4 Rounds

A1) 8 HSPU or 3 Wall walks
A2) 6R/6L Front Rack Bulgarian Split Squat
(stay light and get used to holding the barbell with good balance)


Review Row Technique
6 x 300 meters with 120 seconds rest between sets

2 mins Couch Stretch
2 mins Ankle mobility



Crossfit and the Military

All across the nation, there are members of the military doing Crossfit as their primary form of fitness. All branches conduct daily physical training, and Crossfit is becoming more and more common within various types of units. While preparing for my deployment to Afghanistan, we would do Crossfit WODs three days a week, and use the other two days for combat specific physical training (IE road marches, tactical movement drills et al). We knew we would be traveling to a mountainous area, and that our physical abilities needed to match this.

One of the primary connections between the military and Crossfit, are the functional types of movements. Properly performing a squat leads to a stronger body, but also teaches how to move up and down in an efficient manner. Kipping pull-ups and other similar movements, teach the body to transfer energy from the center to its extremities. This is important when needing to climb over objects and again, to move efficiently. Kettlebell swings and other hip driven movements, help to train the body to pick up ammo cans, sand bags or other objects quickly and safely.

With the challenge of the workouts, mental toughness quickly comes into play. This is preached throughout the military, and it is no surprise that leaders in the various branches, would want to incorporate something to help facilitate this. Pushing through a grinding workout will help to show a part of what your body is capable, and build confidence in your physical capabilities. When you look over and see your teammates struggle and gut through a workout, it helps to build camaraderie and trust throughout the ranks.

As we have seen, workouts may vary greatly in time and intensity. This helps to simulate what the body may have to deal with in combat situations. Short sprints and very physical movements will need to be completed while the body supports body armor, ammo, a weapon, a medical kit and other items. Unlike the Revolutionary War, our current battlefield is one that travels through the mountains, or through the streets of a city. Compound and explosive movements performed in Crossfit all carryover to this, and help to strengthen the body enough to carryout necessary missions.

There is a definite reason for the close bond between the military and Crossfit, and I believe the partnership will continue to grow. Level I certifications are being conducted on bases stateside and deployed. This is helping members to learn how to properly lead workouts and make necessary corrections during them. Crossfit has continued to grow, and the military has been a major supporter throughout the years.

Rower Tips – Length and Power

This is a post from Coach Bill who is in the transition process over to Kuwait. Let’s spend a year improving our rowing, so when he returns we will be stronger than ever.

Featured below is a short video from Olympic silver medalist and CrossFitter Krista Guloien. She talks on working with the erg on a broader level than last week’s video. Her focus here on the erg is length and power.

Think of those things as you work on the rower even in a warmup.

Length begins with your depth in the catch and ends with your lean back in the finish. In this video, Krista leans back farther and pulls the handle higher on her chest than we recommend, but keep in mind how much time she’s spent rowing and on the erg. Your lean should be about 5 to 10 degrees and the handle should end at the bottom of your rib cage.

Power comes almost exclusively in the drive from your legs. The power we develop and use in Olympic lifts like the deadlift and the clean will help you in the drive. And your work on the erg will help you in those lifts.

5 Types of Weightlifting Shoes and Why You Might Need Them

Let’s talk shoes.

I love shoes.

And let’s be honest about why we all got into CrossFit… the gear. Wrist wraps, jump ropes, knee sleeves, minimalist shoes, lifting shoes, deadlift socks, athletic tape, more lacrosse balls than John Hopkins University needs, and of course the never ending supply of awesome t-shirts.

All this from your head coach who loves getting to wear sweatpants and shorts to work nearly everyday.

But I digress. Shoes.

Weightlifting Shoes

Many of you have asked in the past couple of weeks about the differences in shoes that you see at the gym. With the holiday season coming, perhaps you are considering investing/splurging/indulging/gifting a pair of the weightlifting shoes you see around the gym.

First lets talk about what a weightlifting shoe is and how it is different than a regular shoe.

Regular shoes are made of a rubber or synthetic footpad that is designed to absorb your foot strike and movement into the ground, while providing ankle stability, traction, and resistance to scrapes, cuts and bruises say when running in a forest or on the street. It serves many purposes and does them all pretty well.

A weightlifting shoe is designed to do one thing and is defined by its heel. It has a solid wood, metal, or hard plastic elevated heel. Trying to bend a weightlifting shoe will result in only the slightest of flexion in the toes. (Think the Nike Free ad campaign the shoe is nearly in a knot)

This elevated heel will alleviate and enhance some of the ankle flexion needed for a proper squat/catch position. The solid heel provides a firm foundation to being to stand any weight up, from a 65# squat to a double weight snatch. Many olympic weightlifting gyms require their clients to have a pair before they begin to learn, we are a bit different in that requirement, but often as people realize they love doing CrossFit, I’ll encourage them to being to consider purchasing a dedicated shoe to help their productivity in the gym.

That being said let’s look at some of the different brands and styles. Each person will have a different opinion about which shoe they like. Sadly these shoes are hard to find in stores, leaving us to order and return at times to find the right fit for you.

Hybrids – These are a style of weightlifting shoe that is considerably lighter than their more dedicated counterparts. These shoes are typically light enough to be able to do most WOD’s in and were specifically designed for lifters who CrossFit.

Reebok CrossFit Lifter 2.0 ($150-$125) (1.0 might still be around online $65-$85) lifter-2-teal-gravel-blue-web1

This is the first Hybrid on the market, designed by Reebok after their deal with CF. For a long time it was the only shoe that was light and one could reasonably expect to do a WOD in. They fit a bit on the wider side. You can also more than likely find these locally in store at Road Runner Sports or at some CF gyms that carry large inventories.

Inov-8 FastLift 335(mens)/315(Womens) ($150-$100) 5050973770-lime-black-red-web1_3

Inov-8 is a shoe brand that has been on top of the minimalist/light/running shoe puzzle for years. They are very popular in the CrossFit world and their shoe is becoming a popular alternative to the Reebok hybrid. It has a more narrow fit and is apparently more comfortable to run in than the other options.

Dedicated – They have a way less cool sounding name, but these shoes are usually a lot more solid and heavy. I personally wear the Nike’s and they approach two full pounds in weight. Think anchors into the ground. Now imagine doing burpees with anchors. On the platform though, they provide unsurpassed stability.

Nike Romaleo 2 ($189-$175)


This is Nike’s entry in the dedicated line, they will be launching their CF line of shoes in spring of 2015, so we’ll see if they release a hybrid. As I said before these shoes are heavy and solid. They are good for people with wider feet and/or those who like the security of two straps.

Adidas Adipower ($199-$125)


These are Adidas top of the line shoe and are fantastic if you have a more narrow foot. They are lighter than the Nike’s and provide a lot more stability than the hybrid’s. If you ask people around between the Nike and Adidas, it is a 50/50 split based on feel and preference. Both are fantatic.

Adidas Powerlift 2.0 ($95-$75)


This is Adidas entry level weightlifting shoe. It isn’t a hybrid and still weighs as much as the more expensive Adipower. This is likely the best price option if you are curious to try them and can’t find the older style of Reebok Hybrid’s somewhere. Perfect entry level shoe.

Can Deadlifting Increase Your Vertical?

Squats, box jumps, double-unders and even push presses are well known to develop and increase your vertical jump. As a previous collegiate basketball athlete, I can attest that each of the previously listed movements works really well at increasing the vertical jump. There is one HUGE movement that is missing from that well-known list, DEADLIFTS.  

The NSCA (National Strength and Conditioning Association) did research on the overall benefits of barbell deadlifts.  One of the many benefits that resulted in this research was the increase in vertical jump performance.

The focus of the study was to analyze the relationships between training-induced changes in rapid torque in the hip/knee and vertical jump performance.

Results of the test:

  • Increases of 18.8-49% for rapid torque with in hips and knee extensors and flexors
  • Increases of 20cm – 11.3cm (7.87in – 4.44in) in vertical jump

These findings show that a proper barbell deadlift training program was effective at enhancing rapid torque capacities in both the knee extensors and flexors, which in turn increased height of the vertical jump performance.

If one of your goals in the gym is to increase your “vert,” deadlifts are imperative to achieving that goal.  We haven’t installed a rim yet at the gym, but you will learn how to deadlift correctly to improve your power, strength and explosiveness. If you are more of a sideline type of fan and increasing your vertical isn’t one of your explicit goals, you’ll still receive the same benefits mentioned in this study!

Can Good Foods Cause Bad Sleep?

Sleep is a beautiful thing. When we are rested, we perform better – in life and at the gym! However, with busy lives, most of us are not afforded 8 to 10 blissful hours of slumber each night. So, shouldn’t we make the most of the sleep we do get?

I happened upon an article about foods that may be negatively impacting sleep quality. Apparently, what we put in our faces in the hours leading up to bed affect our shut-eye potential. Intrigued (and always looking for a way to wake up feeling awesome), I did some additional research on the topic.

Some things to avoid before hitting the sack make sense:

  • Sugar – causes blood sugar levels to spike and fall rapidly, which may lead to waking up during the night.
  • Alcohol – disrupts REM (dream-stage) sleep, resulting in decreased feeling of restfulness and lowered concentration, memory, and motor skills (all of these are no good in the gym!).
  • Caffeine (including chocolate (especially dark chocolate!), coffee, caffeinated tea, etc.) – no-brainer here!
  • Heavy, high-fat foods – take longer to digest (an unnecessary energy tax on the body when trying to rest and repair) and can cause discomfort that makes sleep difficult.
  • Spicy foods – can lead to heartburn and wakefulness as a result.

But, to my surprise, otherwise healthy foods may be culprits of truly restful sleep. Check these out:

  • Celery, cucumbers, watermelon, radishes, and the like – with a high water content, these foods act as natural diuretics, which may require a trip to the bathroom during the night.
  • Tomatoes, eggplant, soy sauce, bananas, avocado, beans, liver, MSG, aged cheeses (e.g., brie) and fermented dairy and soy products  – these foods contain tyramine (an amino acid), which stimulates release of the neurotransmitter norepinephrine in the brain. The result: increased brain activity and sleep delay.
  • Broccoli, brussel sprouts, and cauliflower – these seemingly benign veggies are packed with slow-to-digest fiber, which keeps your body on overdrive during the night.
  • Steak (yes, I consider steak a healthy food!) – high in protein and marbled fats, steak (and its kin) digests slowly, leading to unneeded energy depletion during sleep.

Scientific truth or malarkey, I cannot say. But, it’s food for thought…and possibly better sleep! Maybe try limiting these foods to daytime hours and see if you notice any changes. What have you got to lose…besides, perhaps, some tossing and turning and a few seconds off your WOD time?

What to do about wrist pain

A couple of you have pointed out that your wrists are in pain when you come into the gym. Exercises like pushups, cleans, front squats, or snatches will all put various kinds of strain or stress on your wrists. Although wrists are pretty consistently indicators of something larger being really restricted, it does feel good to take the stress of the localized area in the mean time. This is an article from Olympic Weightlifting Guru, a blog dedicated to helping people learn the more difficult lifts we do at SCF.

I broke one of my wrists in college. A guy got mad that I beat him in the air for a catch, so he clipped my feet out from under before I landed. Ended up in the ER with both the radius and the ulna broken a centimeter below the wrist joint. Everything healed up nicely and although PT wasn’t very much fun, it was soon over. Fast forward seven years and I walk into my first Crossfit class featuring this thing called an Overhead Squat. Soon it began to feel like someone had jammed a knife into my stretched and hyper extended wrists.

I quickly learned my PT and doctor were more concerned with basic functionality, not solid movement to help me stretch and get stronger. I had some work left on the table. Lots of stretching, lots of upper back, shoulder, scap and forearm mobility. Much of what I recommend to people with the same issues. Wrists so often become the catch-all for anything else “upstream.”

The videos on the link offer some good, easy to do stretches that should help out. Also you might consider looking at a nice pair of wrist wraps. A couple of good styles are here and here. These will mostly offer support to the wrist, but they also cloud the bodies pain response by spreading out the feeling. Hear that I did not say make things better. Mobility and stretching will be necessary for any long term results.

Happy lifting


Tuesday 1-20-15


Warm up and review Snatch technique.

Then work up to a heavy weight you hit successfully three times

Tabata style: 20 secs of work/10 secs of rest for 8 full rounds then rotate to the next movement, no rest between exercises.

Ring Planks
American KBS
Sit-up with OH press
Ring Support


Peanut on T-spine (3mins)
T-spine and pec stretch on foam roller (2mins)

Monday 1-19-15

“The picture up today is of Coach Carrie. She is awesome (no really!) However, she is also a Packer’s fan. At 4:30pm today she will be fulfilling her end of the bet she made with me. 500 burpees for time. Come cheer her on and help her see the err of her ways, because remember it’s not how you start a game, its how you finish. (Although technically, if we look at the opening game of the season, we see the same result)” – Coach Jared


Back Squat
3 – 40%
3 – 45%
3 – 50%
3 – 60 %
3 – 70%
3+ – 77% (going for max reps, let that barbell crash on the ground!)

WOD: (20 min cap)

50 Air Squats
35 Pullups
Row 750m
40 Box Jumps
25 Pushups w/HR
Row 500m
15 Thrusters (heavy)

Seahawks Sunday 1-18-15


5 Rounds

A1) 5 Front Squats (increase each set)

A2) 3 Wall walks




Squat Clean


Wind Sprints

Saturday 1-17-15


5×4 @ 85%

Partner WOD

25 Heavy deadlifts while partner holds bar in deadlift position

Run 800m together

50 Front Squats (155/115) while partner holds front rack position. (Use axle’s for holds)

Run 400m together

75 pullups while partner hangs from bar

Run 200m Together

100 situps while partner holds plank position

Anytime your partner breaks from their hold, all work has to stop. You may continue to work once the hold position has been regained.


Friday 1-16-15

Strict Press
We are starting another section of the same cycle we worked on last month. Add 5lbs to your previous max and use that for your totals.

Three warm up sets of 5
5 – 60%
5 – 68%
5+ – 77%


AMRAP for 5 mins
10 Unbroken Wallballs
15 Double Unders

Rest 3 mins

AFAP 5 Rounds for time
12 Wallballs
24 Double Unders

Thursday 1-15-15


5 Rounds of:
A1) 6R/6L Bulgarian Split Squats (Increase the weight once, comfortable by using  KB’s in the front rack position)
A2) Pick a shoulder mobility exercise. (Rotate through 3 unique ones)


Run 400m/Row 500m
10 Power Clean (135/95)
10 Front Squat (135/95)
10 Push Press (135/95)

25min cap



Hang Power Snatch and OHS Technique

5 rounds of
A1) 5 Hang Power Snatch
A2) 10 pull-up elements


Open WOD 11.4

Complete as many rounds and reps as possible in 10 minutes of:
60 Bar-facing burpees
30 Overhead squats (120/90)
10 Muscle-ups

Tuesday 1-13-15

Today is a special (sad) day here at Slate. Today is Coach Bill’s last day. At the end of last year he took a job working as a leadership director overseas with the Army. He flies out this week. We asked him what he wanted to coach one last time here and he instantly said Helen. This is a slightly modified version of that. Come in tonight at 5:45 to wish him luck, safe travels, and good time as he works with our troops overseas!


Warm up 2 Squat Cleans + 1 Split Jerk then

EMOTM for 10 mins at 75%

42 Pushups w/HR
21 KBS (70/53)
25 cal Row
30 Pushups w/HR
15 KBS
25 cal Row
18 Pushups w/HR
25 cal Row

Monday 1-12-15


Back Squat

18 mins to test for a new 1RM


2 rounds
60s Max Wall Balls
60s Max Power Snatch 75/55
60s Rest
2 rounds
60s Max Burpees
60s Max Shoulder to Overhead 95/65
60s Rest
2 rounds
60s Max Push Ups
60s Max Double Unders

Sunday 1-11-15


Push Press 5-5-5-5-5
increase each round


100 Double Under Buy-In
30 KBS 70/53
30 Double Unders
30 V-Ups
30 KB Walking Lunges (53/35 in each hand)
30 Calorie Row

Saturday 1-10-15


Front Squat 85%
Add 10# if you did this last week. Otherwise, 6 sets at 85%
10 Chest to Deck Push Ups beween Rounds

With a partner, alternating rounds:
3 Burpees
3 Hang Power Cleans 75/55
3 Thrusters
3 Shoulder to Overhead
–2min rest–
3 Burpees
3 Hang Power Cleans 95/65
3 Thrusters
3 Shoulder to Overhead
–2min rest–
3 Burpees
3 Hang Power Cleans 115/75
3 Thrusters
3 Shoulder to Overhead

Friday 1-9-15

Warm up and review Thrusters
2 Thrusters
**Heavy, but not a max. You should be warmed up but not fatigued for the WOD

Open 11.6
as far up the ladder as possible:
3/3, 6/6, 9/9 etc..
Thruster 100/65
Chest to Bar Pull Up
**No PullUps: 1 Burpee + 1 Ring Row = 1 Pull Up

Thursday 1-8-15

Deadlift 5×3 85%

Air Squats
Russian KBS 70/53
Wall Balls

Wednesday 1-7-15

Strict Press Deload: 40%x5, 50%x5, 60%x5
12 KB Snatches after each round

25min Cap
50 Wall Balls
40 Box Jumps
30 Pistols
20 HSPU (Sub Heavy Push Press)
600m Run
30 Pistols
40 Box Jumps
50 Wall Balls

To Scale: Half the reps and do a 20min AMRAP (the run is still 600m..)