WOD: 4/3/13

Strength: Deadlift
2X3 @ 75%, 2X2 @ 80%, 3X1 @ 95%


2 Rounds For time:
30 Double-Unders
5  Power Cleans (135/85)
30 Wall Balls (20/14)
5  Power Cleans (135/85)
15 Toes-2-Bar

*Post times.

CF Games Open T-shirt orders are in!  Expect them soon.  CrossFit Merced hat orders go in at the end of the week – If you want a hat, fill out the order form – we can make a hat for you in whatever style/color you want.

The FINAL  Friday Night Lights event is going down this Friday at 6:00 PM.  It’s sure to be an epic night and you shouldn’t miss out.  Once again, the 4:30 & 5:30 PM classes will be closed on Friday.  If you can make it on Friday night, we prefer that you come then, but of course, regular morning classes will be available.

It turns out that we’ve done a bad job teaching most of you proper barbell etiquette.  Lately we’ve done some instruction on how to properly load AND UNLOAD a barbell.  If you missed it, be sure to ask a coach.   Our bumper plates are decomposing at an alarming rate and we’d like to preserve them as long as possible.  Here are some tips:

  • 10+10+10+5= 35.  Yep, it’s real maths. (And even though some of you think maths are a fad and they’ll be out of style soon, you’re probably wrong.  I have a feeling that maths will be around for a long time)  Instead of using 4 plates, just grab yourself a 35.  EVEN IF YOU REALLY LIKE 10+10+10+5.  The bigger plates hold up to wear and tear much better than the smaller, thinner plates because the mass is distributed across a broader surface when they absorb impact.
  • If you see anybody doing the “lever-up” unloading technique (leaving the plate on the bar, then lifting the bar up vertically like a sandwich harpooned by a toothpick), kindly tell them that what they’re doing is making Anthony’s hair fall out (and he can’t afford to lose any more) and then show them the proper way to unload:  Straddle the bar, stabilize your midline, lift the bar with one hand and slide the plates off of the end with your other by pushing from the center of the plate.  Simple.
  • Keep collars tight.  Every time you drop a bar and the plate lands at an angle other than perpendicular to the floor (even by a little bit, or even worse: you drop it and it lands awkwardly then shoots itself sideways) a puppy dies – probably a yellow lab.  Don’t kill puppies.
  • Don’t drop the 10# bumpers.  Tenicide is a real thing.


WOD: 3/26/13

Strength: High Bar Back Squat:
3X5 @ 75%, 3X3 @ 85%

Notes: do 5 dead-hang pullups after each set of squats.


For time:

Run 400m
4 rounds of:
5 Power Cleans (155/105)
10 HR Push-ups
15 Air Squats
Run 400m
4 rounds of:
5 Power Cleans (155/105)
10 HR Push-ups
15 Air Squats
Run 400m

*Strict 20 minute cap.

If you’ve been struggling with your CrossFit Merced attendance, it’s ok. We understand that life happens, and it can be hard to get down here for an hour, BUT…
Back Squats are important. They’re so important, in fact, that we do them every Tuesday. Come squat with us. Don’t miss Tuesdays.

Once again, we’ll be doing Friday Night Lights at 6:00 PM on Friday. The pot-luck was amazing last week, so we’re doing it one more time. We don’t know what workout is coming, but we know we’ll be ready.

We just got new CrossFit Merced apparel! We’ve got new t-shirts, tank tops, and hats available to pre-order. Get it while it lasts!

WOD: 9/28

The squat is the key to strength and conditioning.  It is the sine qua non of barbell exercises. I tell many new trainees that if they are not going to squat, they should not even bother to train.  No other exercise changes so many things about the body in so short a time as the squat.  To omit squats because some uninformed fool said they were “bad for your knees” indicates that you probably didn’t want to do them anyway, so it’s just as well.

Squats make knees stronger.  Squats make athletes better.  Squats are good for kids, teenagers, adults, elderly people, and anybody else who can perform them correctly.  Squats are the functional expression of human skeletal and muscular anatomy, and the human body is designed to do them.  The squat is the way that God has made the bipedal human body to lower itself to the ground.  It is the position in which half the population of South Asia spends the afternoon.  And when done weighted, it is the best exercise in existence for strength, power, coordination, joint integrity, bone density, confidence, discipline, intelligence, and charm.

Come to class.  We will discuss and teach the points of performance of the squat, along with instructions for stance, breathing, and body positioning.

Squats are the most important barbell exercise in our inventory of things to do at CrossFit Merced.  Learn to do it correctly.  We need you strong.

Back Squat


*Post Loads.

Comments section: First to post the 4 main points of performance of the AIR SQUAT recieves 50% off their next retail purchase.  Feel free to join the discussion.

“Proper focus” & WOD: 5/23

“What is Fitness?”   –  We must continually keep the answer to this question in mind.

We define fitness as: Increased work capacity across broad time and modal domains.  This means that we can do more work, faster, at many varied tasks.  It also means that we train to increase capacity across all 10 areas of fitness.

Lately, we have been doing a lot of work for  most of these areas.  Take a look at them:

. Cardiovascular/Respiratory Endurance- The ability of the body systems to gather, process, and transport oxygen.

2. Stamina- The ability of the body to process, store, deliver, and utilize energy.

3. Strength- The ability of a muscular unit, or combo of muscular units to apply force.

4. Flexibility- The ability of maximizing range of motion at a given joint.

5. Power- The ability of a muscular unit, or combo of muscular units to apply maximum force in minimum time.

6. Speed- The ability to minimize the time cycle of a repeated movement.

7. Coordination- The ability to combine several distinct movement patterns into a singular distinct movement.

8. Agility- The ability to minimize transition time between one movement pattern to another.

9. Accuracy- The ability to control movement in a given direction or at a given intensity.

10. Balance- The ability to control the placement of the bodies’ center of gravity in relation to its’ support base.

Looking at the list above, it seems our programming has lacked a STRENGTH component.  This is  for a couple reasons.

First, since we are mostly new CrossFitters, we have been throwing a lot of new movements at you, and have made them relatively light weights so that you can repeat your new skills over and over and over again, ingraining the movement into your muscle-memory.

Second, and more importantly, we have not had the necessary focus.  You see, strength days are no walk in the park.  Strength days don’t leave you gasping for your breath, but they are hard.   They aren’t long in duration, but they are grueling.  They are very few reps, but they are draining.  They are exciting, but miserable at the same time.

Think back to your most “intense” WOD at CrossFit Merced… Remember feeling that “Oh Crap, I think I’m gonna [insert embarrassing outcome]”   You got that feeling because you pushed your limits.  You went harder and farther than you thought you could.  That is the feeling you should get on strength days.

If we are to be more fit, then we must also be stronger, so we will have strength days. A strength day is not a day off.  It is a day that should scare you.

Today, we will keep it simple.  We will pick up a barbell with as much weight as we can handle – over and over.

WOD:   Deadlift      2-2-2-2-2-2


Cash out:   100 KB snatches  (53/35)

*Weights for each set will be posted to comments.

What is Fitness? Part I

With all of the fitness methodologies out there, CrossFit has been tearing up a storm and creating some rifts in the fitness world, if you will.  So what is all this stuff about anyway And just what the heck IS fitness?

Many people whom have maybe heard of CrossFit have tinkered with the idea of looking into it a little more, maybe even looked at the CrossFit website and probably even contemplated going to a CrossFit affiliate to find out more information.  I hope in this post to give you some persective from a coach who has seen and studied many different training methodoliges to come up with CrossFit as being an effective methodology for the development of overall fitness.

Well this brings me to my first point of what is the definition of Fitness?  According to the Mirriam Webster Dictionary it is the “Quality or state of being fit” and according to our medical dictionary it is the ability to perform a certain task.  When one looks at these definitons, we can see that fitness, doesn’t really have a definiton and now becomes an individual purpose.  It also means it becomes a little challenging to define who is fit.
When we look at a marathon runner who can run a sub 3 hour marathon, would we consider that fit?  If they were asked to move a heavy object, could they?

When we look at a Strong man competition, while they could move a fire engine with their teeth and throw kegs over a bar, can they in the event they need to run, get up and move their body for a duration of time?

When you see a “skinny person” on a magazine cover with little to no definition in their body, (also known as Skinny Fat) even though they look good, could they perform a task they were asked to complete without excessive fatigue?

So now, we have to look at how to define fitness and look for the most functional definition.  this definition comes from many sources, but is most brought about more recently by CrossFit.  Fitness contains 10 domains if you will and we have to look at our ability to perform in each one:
Cardiovascular Endurance
And if you wanted to add in “Body Composition” under a health and fitness component we could.

So now, when we look at what it means to be fit, it means we have competence or the ability to perfrom in each of these areas.  this now ties in to a functional and working definition of fitness of:  The ability to perform tasks at hand without excessive fatigue.  Combining all of this information gives us a new look at how to perform for life!

When we start to look at how a Strengthening and Conditioning program should be modeled for overall performance, it has to be geared towards all of those goals.  this in turn means that while bodybuilding definitely has its niche, and endurance athletes have their overall niche, and strongmen have their niche, when we start to look at straight function and health, how can we put people through a “traditional” training program when we know fitness is about PERFORMANCE and not looks?  This in turn is why CrossFit becomes an effective methodology to train for fitness!  We will continue this discussion in a up and comin post, but for now, please answer to comments, what is YOUR definition of Fitness?