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Friday, October 30, 2009

Paleo/Primal/Locavore/Zone Challenge

Our feast of gratitude was a smashing success! Lot's of yummy local vegetables and meat.
Now I want to try something else. A month long paleo/zone/primal/locavore experiment. Many CrossFit boxes have been doing the paleo or zone challenge as a way to increase awareness of the food we consume. I would like to take that a step further by not only applying the paleo/zone principles but also considering where the food is coming from. I do not see the point of advocating a paleo diet without also stressing the importance of quality meat. Even if we bracket off the ethical and political concerns of eating meat from CAFOs (industrially grown concentrated animal feeding operations) we are still left with the question of healthy meat. Our ancestors did not eat meat that was saturated in corn, wheat, hormones and antiobiotics. The paleo diet must give consideration to the diet of the animal. Whatever the animal eats you eat too.

Remember that the word diet simply means "way of life." If we keep this in mind we can stop thinking about diet as a gimmick or as the latest fad. Zone and paleo as a way of life is really as simple as eating meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, no sugar, little starch, etc.

Please, please check out the link below to Robb Wolf's blog. Here you will learn all about the paleo and zone way of eating. There is so much valuable information including links to other health related matters. Also, lot's of delicious recipes. http://robbwolf.com/

Here is a link to a fair assessment of the differences between grass fed and finished beef and CAFO factory farmed beef.

So what is the challenge? One month of a heightened consciousness and a re-evaluation of our most naturalized assumptions regarding food.

There is oodles of info on the zone and paleo diet on the CrossFit online journal. If you do not already subscribe, consider doing so. At $20.00/year it is a steal of a deal.

The Evils of Sugar

Please take the time to watch the above lecture. Here Robert H. Lustig, MD and UCSF Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Endocrinology tells a story that fully captures the entanglement of politics, economics, science, American history and food. You will get a historical sense of why the US and Canada moved towards the low fat and high carb diet as well a thorough explanation of the differences between fructose, glucose, sucrose and lactose. Particularly scary is the US food program directed towards inner city kids where kids are served up ridiculous levels of high fructose corn syrup in their fruit drinks.

Gymnastics Certification in Vancouver

Jane, Ryan, Rochelle, Charity and I are all very excited to share out gymnastics knowledge with everyone. One of the most compelling points that Coach Tucker made was his reference to strength as the foundation of athleticism. Tucker's comment really echoed Mark Rippetoe's assertion that strength is the key to improving the 9 other recognized domains of physical fitness: cardiovascular respiratory endurance, power, speed, balance, coordination, stamina, flexibility, agility and accuracy. In other words, if you improve your strength all the other areas of fitness will also improve. To develop competence in the gymnastics movements athletes must develop a strong core. We can go back to our wheel analogy, with our trunk and torso being the hub of the wheel and our limbs the spokes. Strengthen the hub and you get a tighter unit as a whole. The olympic lifts and the slow power lifts are impossible without a strong core and core strength is the absolute foundation of gymnastics.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

flux CrossFit Kids update

Here is an update for all the flux CrossFit kids, parents, and fans ...
Our flux CrossFit Kids are loving the new climbing rope - there are some great competitions going on between parents and kids to see who can get to the top faster. We also have a ton more pull-up stations, and an entire area just for flux CrossFit Kids.

Here are some photos to check out of the kids climbing the rope even out little wee Sam!

Overhead squats with great lumbar curve

Gymnastics Certification in Vancouver

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Sumo Deadlift High Pull

Please watch this video on the SDHP (click on the post title). You will do it on Thursday. Note the slow start and the fast finish in the movement. Also note that the arms do not bend until the athletes have full hip extension (also known as opening the hips). 

Friday, October 23, 2009

Thursday, Oct 22 2009

Here is Theresa with complete control over the 30lb kettlebell. There is no going back now Theresa! 

This is around Gary's 7th workout and the first time he has swung the kb in the WOD. Good job Gary.

Gary has great curve in his lumbar spine.  

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Air Squat

The beauty of the air squat is in its simplicity. It is pure functionality. No weights, no apparatus, yet when executed correctly, the air squat develops explosive power that emanates from the hip drive. Take a look at these athletes as they struggle with the squat. Do any of these faults sound familiar? I know when I fatigue the first thing to go for me is the upright torso and my chest starts to drop a bit.

Click on the post title to view a video.

Today's WOD

5 Rounds
30 air squats
10 ring dips
20 KB swings

For Time

Ted's Milk Journey Continued

Oct. 19
Saturday was a busy day. I drank only 3L and then made up for it on Sunday and drank 5L. I've heard that this is like any other diet. Whatever you lack one day you cannot make up for the next. I should be drinking milk throughout the day. I bring a litre of milk to work for lunch. It is hard to make time to drink anymore than that throughout my work shift. There have been some days that I have half a gallon left to drink at night. I think it would be best to drink most of it in the morning so that it can circulate through my body for the rest of the day while I am working and to make sure there is some left to drink after an evening workout. I was 156lbs when I started this diet. I am now 163 lbs. My belly has protruded a little. I have been struggling with turkish get ups with 40 lbs for a couple of months now. For the first time today I did eight, four per arm.

Squats Oct 21 5 x 220
Squats  Aug    1RM 205

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Reminder of schedule change

Friday noon hour class is also canceled.

No classes Friday night, Saturday or Sunday.

Monday morning we will have 4 new pull-up bars, a new stretching area and flux CrossFit kids will have their own space. 

Wednesday, Oct 21 WOD

Tony and Cory
snatch off!

Another first time snatcher with huge potential

21 power snatches 65/95
2 rope climbs
3 Rounds

Caitie working hard on her rope climbs.

This is Ariane's first time doing the bb snatch.
She is already well on her way to a great snatch.

lovely Brendan

Traci has great speed through the middle.

Heavy Lifting at flux CrossFit

press 3 x 80
squat 5 x 165

press 3 x 140
squat 5 x 275

press 3 x 95
squat 5 x 185

press 3 x 60
squat 5 x 45

press 3 x 120
squat 5 x 225

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

eat your vegetables

Seriously, do you really eat enough fruits and vegetables? I know I don't.  For the next week try and eat at least one serving of vegetables at every meal, snacks included.  I am starting this tonight.  

Monday, October 19, 2009

Schedule Changes for this weekend

This weekend is the CrossFit Gymnastics Certification in Vancouver and 6 of us from flux CrossFit are attending. Also this weekend, Tawny is building 4 more pull-up bars, and the basement is being dry walled.  This means that flux CrossFit will be closed Friday evening and all day Saturday and Sunday.  We have to close the gym completely in order to give Tawny the space she needs to install the bars. We are very excited to have four new stations to work out at in the gym and the basement will now become a post-class stretching area for those of you who are so inclined.  

Also note that there are now Wed noon classes as well as Thursday 6am and 7am classes. Sunday class is at 1pm.  


Tedd's GOMAD Journey

Oct. 11th

Hello. My name is Tedd. I am trying out the GOMAD diet for one month. ( a gallon of milk a day ). The greatest challenge so far is finding enough time to drink a gallon of milk in a day. It's keeping me busy. I've got to stay organized. In adolescence my daily intake would be 2 glasses ( about a litre ). Now I hardly get one glass in each day. The GOMAD diet is suppose to increase strength and muscle mass. 
There is a myth that milk intake increases mucus production. I found two journals that disprove this myth: "Relationship between milk intake and mucus production in adult volunteers challenged with rhinovirus-2" from Department of Community Medicine, University of Adelaide, Royal Adelaide Hospital, South Australia. And "Milk Consumption Does Not Lead to Mucus Production or Occurrence of Asthma" from Allergy Unit, Department of Dermatology, University Hospital (B.W.), Zurich
Agroscope Liebefeld-Posieux, Swiss Federal Research Station for Animal Production and Dairy Products (ALP) (A.S., B.W., R.S.), Berne, SWITZERLAND. I wonder if vice versa is true. If I am going to be gaining any mass it will not be of mucus.
Enough of that disgusting topic. The GOMAD diet is suppose to be with whole milk. I started it yesterday Oct. 10th. Both yesterday and today I made the mistake of drinking 2%. Like any scientific experiment you are suppose to keep all factors constant except for the variables you are experimenting with. My performance might also be affected by the heightend enthusiasm for crossfit after competing in the crossfit games in saskatoon last weekend. I have also been eating abnormally last weekend and this weekend with eating out in restaurants last weekend and having three thanksgiving suppers this weekend. I only got a chance to drink 3L of chocolate milk yesterday but I finished it today and hope to finish my gallon of white milk today. Overall I am excited and interested in trying this new diet. Well I am off to my 2nd thanksgiving supper.
 Oct. 14th
My deallift one rep max was 285lbs. Yesterday my 5 rep max was 275lbs and I lifted 285lbs only 4 times. My hand strength seems to compromise me more than my core.
Today I did Fran @ 85lbs in 8:12. I started crossfit in January and my Fran time was 11:40 with 65lbs on Mar. 7th. I did my first thrusters 21 in a row and then I kind of wimped out and took a break on my 15s and 9s and breaks on all sets of my pull ups. I will look forward to improving my time with more weight at the end of this diet. 

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Reminder- Fran's Stretching Class

A reminder that Fran's stretching class is this Friday at 7pm. I highly encourage all of you to take part in this one hour session. 

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Exciting Certifications

Charity and I are going to two certifications at the end of January in Chico California: CrossFit Movement and Mobility and CrossFit Nutrition. I have attached the link to both below.  I am very excited about both but particularly about the movement and mobility certification as it is being conducted by Kelly Starrett, one of my favourite CrossFitters.  

There is still room in both certifications if anybody is interested! 

Ted the Guinea Pig

Mark Rippetoe is a big advocate of consuming milk for the purposes of making considerable gains in strength and stamina.  The GOMAD (A Gallon of Milk a Day) diet is his recommendation for hard gainers. Ted and I are embarking on a little experiment for the next 4 weeks. Ted has agreed to try the GOMAD diet and he is already about a week into it. We are going to measure Ted's performance in Fran, Grace as well as take his CrossFit total (1RM for squat, press and deadlift) at the beginning of the month and then at the end of the month and see what happens.  

Wish Ted luck! 


Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Raw Milk

As of late I have been doing research on raw or unpasteurized milk.  It is illegal for farmers to sell raw milk but the demand from consumers in Canada is indeed growing. Right now I am looking for a source. In many European countries citizens have the choice to buy raw or pasteurized milk.  Check out the Weston A. Price Foundation website below for info on raw milk.  


Also, here is a link to a story from CBC on dairy farmer Michael Schmidt. 

A hint for today's WOD

2009 CrossFit GamesCoach Burgener on the Snatch Event - video [wmv] [mov]

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Locavore/paleo/primal feast of gratitude Oct 17

I believe that the key to ethical and healthy eating is gratitude. Supermarkets are not arranged to inspire gratitude in the consumer but rather tend to generate a sense of entitlement and indifference. Westerners tend to be very far removed from the food they eat with little awareness of the time, knowledge and effort that go into either hunting and gathering or animal husbandry practices that do not follow the industrial model of CAFOs (concentrated animal feeding operations).

Flux CrossFit is going to hold a feast of gratitude. This will be in the tradition of folk culture and the celebration of the abundance of harvest. We will celebrate the simplicity of food in its finest and purist form. To also gain awareness of the ethics of eating meat and dairy products we will make a concerted effort to buy local products that meet some ethical and political standards. These standards are not set in stone and you will have to decide for yourself what your ethical/moral barometer is. Gratitude, perhaps even an awe for nature, develop when we take the time to ask questions about the source of our food.

Charity and I will be hosting this feast. We will be serving moose that was given to us by a friend. Please come any time after 6pm. We will eat at 7pm. Please respond on the blog if you will attend. Friends and family are most welcome. Each fluxer will be responsible for preparing some sort of food.
Please comment on the blog about your experiences preparing for the feast. What difficulties did you face? Did your relationship with the supermarket change at all?


Thursday, October 8, 2009

Understanding Intensity

Those of you that participated in the games undoubtedly increased your level of intensity for the duration of each workout. Likewise, those of you that were there supporting fluxers also probably recognized the high degree of intensity that each athlete demanded of herself or himself.

Intensity is CRITICAL to the CrossFit prescription, which is "constantly varied, high-intensity, functional movement."

Coach Glassman writes: "Power is the definition of intensity, which in turn has been linked to nearly every positive aspect of fitness. Increases in strength, performance, muscle mass, and bone density all arise in proportion to the intensity of exercise"

To understand intensity one must break down physical activity into two categories, aerobic and anaerobic. Most people are more familiar and subsequently comfortable with aerobic activity. Aerobic activity is usually greater than ninety seconds and involves a low to moderate power output or intensity. Some examples of aerobic activity are long distance running, swimming and biking. Aerobic refers to the presence of oxygen.

Anaerobic activity refers to the absence of oxygen. Anaerobic activity requires moderate to high power output or intensity. Examples are doing push-ups, sprinting 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m, squatting.

The energy systems of aerobic and anaerobic interact together and in reality the two do not act separately. Aerobic activity aids in improving cardiovascular function as well as a decrease in fat. And that is great. For our purposes here however, it is worth noting that while anaerobic activity will greatly improve cardiovascular capabilities, decrease muscle fat as well as lead to vast improvements in speed, strength and power, the inverse is not true. Aerobic activity actually leads to a decrease in strength, power, speed. Coach Glassman writes: "Perhaps the aspect of anaerobic conditioning that bears greatest consideration is that anaerobic conditioning will not adversely affect aerobic activity! In fact, properly structured, anaerobic activity can be used to develop a very high level of aerobic fitness without the muscle wasting consistent with high volume aerobic exercise."

CrossFit's prescription for high intensity workouts translates into daily W.O.D.S that are often short in duration but that require tremendous power outputs from the athlete. My advice is to try and increase your level of intensity in your workouts. This is about being comfortable feeling uncomfortable. I am not talking about bragging about puking from working so hard, or working so intensely that your form falls apart; but rather taking less rest in the workout. Give yourself a goal for next workout, say, 5 breaths and you will continue to chip away at the reps. Or, maybe give yourself 3 seconds and attack the movement. At the end of the workout ask yourself: "Could I have pushed it further?" Of course, on some days, we just feel more 'on' than other days, but the goal should be always be intensity.


Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Additional Classes

Starting this Sunday there will be a 1 pm workout.  

There is no class on Thanksgiving Monday. 

Starting next Wednesday there will be a regular noon hour class. 


Tuesday, October 6, 2009

flux CrossFit performs well at the Saskatchewan CrossFit Challenge

What a weekend for flux! Tremendous performances by each athlete and so much heart! I came back to Regina completely invigorated and ready to get to work.

The fluxers were lucky enough to have a rowdy gang of supporters that were there from the early morning to the very end. I know the cheering helped me get in a few extra kettlebell swings and snatches.

Helen and Courteney came in first and second respectively in Division Three. They even lapped the men on the sandbag run. Almost everyone PR'd on their presses. Ted gave a strip tease during his burpees. Debbie came in fourth in the third event. She devoured the sdhp and the kb swings! Don muscled up a PR with a static press! Jane came in 6th in division two. She placed third in the first event, 5th in the second and 11th in the third. Rochelle and Charity both PR'd on their push jerk, tying for 7th place in the second workout. Rochelle gets bonus points for keeping a smile on her face throughout each event. Points for style as well! Charity rocked the swings and the sdhp. Impeccable form by all fluxers. Ryan killed the first workout. He came back from the 800m run in second place and pounded out over 30 sandbag thrusters in a row. Ryan handled the 70lb kb with grace. And me, well, I managed to make it into the top 5 for division one, earning a spot in the 4th workout.

Post flux commentary over dinner proved to be most entertaining, accompanied by riotous laughter and witty insight. Congratulations to all athletes and a big thank you to all of the supporters - Theresa, Joan, Traci, Cory, Ariane, Jacinta, Verne, Crystal, Neil, Karen and Chris.


flux CrossFit Kids this Thursday's class is at 4:00pm

flux CrossFit Kids Class this Thursday will be at 4:00pm!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Saskatchewan CrossFit Challenge WODs

Hello to the flux CrossFit Team and all you faithful flux CrossFit fans:

Here are the WODs for the Saskatchewan CrossFit Challenge: 

WOD 1 - modified Jackie

Videos are uploading to our YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/crossfitsaskatoon) right now. We will embed them here once they are uploaded.

Div 1

For time:

800m run

50 sandbag thrusters

30 burpee pull-ups

Div 2

For time:

800m run

35 sandbag thrusters

25 burpees

Div 3

For time:

600m run

25 sandbag thrusters

20 burpees

WOD 2 - Shoulders to overhead anyhow

Get the weight overhead in any of the following ways:

i) Press

ii) Push Press

iii) Push Jerk

iv) Jerk

WOD 3 - 1 minute madness

Videos are uploading to our YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/crossfitsaskatoon) right now. We will embed them here once they are uploaded.

Div 1

3 rounds for total reps of:

1 min row for calories

1 min 65/95# power snatch

1 min Double Unders (DU’s)

1 min 24/32 kg kettlebell swings (KBS)

1 min rest

Div 2

3 rounds for total reps of:

1 min row for calories

1 min 65/95# sumo deadlift high pull (SDLHP)

1 min Double Unders (DU’s) or 5x skip rope singles

1 min 16/24 kg kettlebell swings (KBS)

1 min rest

Div 3

3 rounds for total reps of:

1 min row for calories

1 min 55/75# sumo deadlift high pull (SDLHP)

1 min Double Unders (DU’s) or 5x skip rope singles

1 min 12/16 kg kettlebell swings (KBS)

1 min rest

WOD 4 - Bonus WOD

This WOD is for the top 5 men and top 5 women in each of the three divisions.  The WOD will not be announced until moments before it starts.

For more info and to see the videos posted go to the following link: http://www.crossfitsaskatoon.ca/challenge

Remember to layer up for the first 800 meter run - it's going to be early and probably on the cooler side. 

flux CrossFit competitors should meet at 7:30am to register, begin our warmup, and talk it all through. Opening remarks are at 8:30am and the first WOD begins at 9am.

Now go flux yourself!


Tuna Burgers

I got the idea for my tuna burgers from Coach Brendan who is a very creative cook. 

I like to use a pesto sauce in mine. This consists of a bunch of basil, couple cloves of garlic, about 1/2 cup of pine nuts, olive oil and some grated parmesan cheese, and salt for flavour. 

I mix the ingredients up in a blender and then add it to a couple cans of tuna. Add one or two eggs. I then chop up a couple of peppers, red, yellow, orange for colour (inspired by Brendan) as well as some finely chopped spinach leaves. Mix it all up, make small patties (about 6-8) place on a baking sheet and cook for about 10 min.  Goat cheese on top of the burgers is delicious!