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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Schedule changes for this weekend

Charity and I are off to two Certifications this weekend in California so there are a few changes to the schedule.

Check out the summary of the movement and mobility certification

On Saturday there will be one class at 10am.
On Sunday there will be one class at 1pm.
No kid's class on Sunday.
On Monday morning, there will only be a 7am class. Other than that the schedule is the same.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

artsy folks at flux CrossFit

We have lot's of creative talent at flux. Currently, Tamara has a show at the University of Regina at the 5th Parallel Gallery.

Beth has a show at the sandbox series at the Globe

Lucy also has a show at the sandbox series at the Globe

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

invitation to flux CrossFit friends and family

It is tough for non-fluxers to identify with the strange mix of elation, exhaustion, pride, and humility flux CrossFitter's experience when they confront the daily wod. It happens to all of us. We start talking about our experiences to non-fluxers and our excitement is met with a whole range of responses from mild curiosity, indifference (they get that glazed look in their eye), and once and a while, excitement.

Here's a chance to bring your family and friends out to experience flux. We will be holding another free class on Saturday, Feb 6th at 11:30 am.

More nutrition

Here is a New York Times article that was posted on CrossFit Oakland's website: www.crossfitoakland.com on the paleo trend that a fringe group of New Yorkers are following. CrossFit is also given a shout out!


The other article, which I came across on the CrossFit Football website: www.CrossFitFootball.com takes a critical look at gluten.

Charity and I have been steadily moving towards a complete paleo diet but I still am consuming dairy and oats. The carbs we do eat are from vegetables (including sweet potato, yam, squash, plus spinach, cauliflower, broccoli, peppers, etc) and fruit.

If I do not soon find access to dairy that that comes from a grass fed cow I am probably going to eliminate that as well. "Organic" dairy, just to remind everyone, does not necessarily mean that the cow is treated humanely. It just means that the cow was fed organic grains.

Monday, January 25, 2010

flux CrossFit - January 2010 Outdoor Winter WODs in Regina Canada

In Regina, Saskatchewan our flux CrossFit athletes know how to workout hard and play even harder outside in the snowy, cold, and sometimes imposing outdoors! All you need are some snowshoes, kettlebells, 400lb tires, and some sandbags (25lbs, 40lbs, 50lbs, 80lbs).

Here's a peek at some of our outdoor W.O.D.s from January 2010.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Great Websites

Two more websites to check out. The first one, eat wild, is of particular importance as it outlines why it is unnatural for cows to eat grain and corn, as well as the very harmful impact this human practice has on these animals. Cool Springs Ranch is in Saskatchewan and looks very promising. Anyone up for a trip to visit their farm?


The Back Squat and 2000m Row

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

A Hint for Saturday's WOD

A not-so-subtle hint for Saturday's WOD.

Also, be sure to watch the tutorial on tire flipping from the www.CrossFit.com. If you subscribe to the journal, watch the entire video.

plus a few other surprises

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Warm up sets for strength training

Warm up sets at flux CrossFit tend to create confusion and mild chaos. In the interests of alleviating this chaos and speeding up the time it takes to get through the warm up sets I have put together a couple of examples of what a warm-up set should look like. I draw directly on Mark Rippetoe's wisdom for establishing my warm-up sets.

First of all, the warm-up serves a couple of purposes: to warm up the muscles, tendons and ligaments (soft tissue stuff) and second, to practice the movement before the set gets heavy.

Starting with lighter sets and progressing to a heavier set enables the athlete to practice the range of motion, and to prepare the motor pathway necessary to execute a movement in a mechanically efficient, and hence safe, manner. Here are some examples:

front squats
2x5 x 45
1x5 x 70
1x2 x 85
3x5 x 125

2x5 x 85
1x5 x 120
1x2 x 160
1x5 x 190

2x5 x 45
1x5 x 75
1x2 x 135
3x5 x 160

Monday, January 18, 2010

The skinny on fat

Please, please, please read this intro to the paleo/high fat/high protein/low carb way of life written by Robb Wolf. It is Robb Wolf's contention, along with many doctors and scientists, that the modern western diet of high intakes of starch and sugar is making us sick.


Sunday, January 17, 2010

stretching Thursday, January 21 and January 28

Fran will be instructing stretching class Thursday, January 21 and 28 at 7pm.

Olympic Lifting Class Canceled

There will be no olympic lifting class tomorrow night. Folks can do the regular WOD at 6pm or 7pm.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Gymnastics is Fun!

Who knew fluxers were so ready to embrace gymnastics?

Way to get upside down!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Stay Tight!

Often you will hear me say before a deadlift or a squat or a press, "stay tight." This is a cue to go from being slack to rigid, particularly to maintain midline stabilization. At CrossFit Invictus, they refer to this practice as 'bracing,' and they have a nifty little flowchart that outlines midline stabilization. Take a look.

The following is from CrossFit Invictus, which in turn is drawing on the super knowledgeable Kelly Starr.


flux CrossFit on the affiliate blog

Hey everyone,

Take a look at the affiliate blog to see Traci, Brenda and Beth ploughing through the snow with their sandbags! Just go to www.CrossFit.com and click on the affiliate blog link to the left.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Power Cleans and Push-ups

Friday is Gymnastics

Tomorrow we are going to be working on our gymnastics skills.

We will begin with some squats 5 5 5 and follow that with presses 10 x 2 @ 65% of your 1RM, focusing on the explosive drive out of the bottom position.

Following that we are going to move into the gymnastics movements. If you are too scared to try some of the movements you will still be expected to learn the proper spotting technique. Remember, everything can be scaled.

Flux CrossFit Kids Cancelation

Charity is in Hawaii so we have to cancel the kid's class tonight. Sorry about this. Class resumes as usual on Sunday.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Habitat for Humanity

Habitat for Humanity is looking for volunteers for Feb 2 from 9am to 4pm. If you cannot commit the entire day you can team up with someone and do a half day. I have emailed the coordinator and am waiting for more information. I thought this would be another great way to show off our flux muscles!

Let me know if you are interested.


The question "What about abs" belongs with the question "What about cardio".

Listen to CrossFit founder Greg Glassman on this question.


Monday, January 11, 2010

Podcast #5 from Robb Wolf

  1. Thoughts on the role of dairy in a Paleo diet
  2. Blood glucose levels
  3. Transition to Paleo Diet
  4. Nut intake and substitutions
  5. Lower carb vs higher carb diets

Robb Wolf Podcast #8

Here is podcast #8.

  1. Ketogenic diets & migraines
  2. Peskin’s thoughts on fish oil
  3. Cheat meals & carb loading
  4. Moving folks to a perfect paleo diet
  5. Contrarian view of paleo diets
  6. Butter & autoimmune issues / Why don’t all folks do well on a low carb approach?
  7. Paleo diet & mass gain for 21 year-old male
  8. Paleo diet & fertility
  9. Junk food cravings during period
  10. Elderly folks gaining weight
  11. MREs
  12. Diet prep for ranger school
  13. Huntington Disease / Broccoli & Thyroid function / Skin rashes / Alkaline foods / Why lean meats?

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Get Outside!

A perfect day for being outdoors...

We did 3 rounds of:

7 kb cleans left 50lb/70lb
7 kb cleans right 50lb/70lb
100m snowshoe sprint
25 sit-ups
100m snowshoe sprint

Brendan and Helen chose to do the sprint with a 70 lb and 50 lb sled pull respectively.
Marc did a 70 lb sandbag snowshoe sprint.

A Bar, a Box and a Kettlebell

Friday's WOD: 5 Rounds
5 push presses (85/125)
7 kb swings (50/70)
9 box jumps (20"/24")

One of the key principles of the CrossFit strength and conditioning program is that it in its metabolic workouts it makes no distinction between 'cardio' and strength training. In this workout we did push presses, box jumps and kb swings. Note the elements involved in the workout: push presses (weightlifting) box jumps (gymnastics) and kb swings (weight lifting). The fastest time was under 8 minutes.

How does an 8 minute workout such as the one above compare to something like a 10k run? Conventional wisdom suggests that the 10 km run is a more effective stimulus for the development of elite cardio respiratory capability. The notion that 'cardio' training is limited to activities such as running, biking and rowing is one of those naturalized assumptions that people simply take as truth. The CrossFit community has, through empirical evidence, proven that CrossFit workouts (such as the one we did on Friday) provide the stimulus necessary for athletes to excel at greater distances (such as a marathon). This is also why fluxer Helen, who is training for the 'death race' has chosen to implement CrossFit workouts into her preparation for this grueling 125 km run.

But take a long distance runner or cyclist and expose them to a CrossFit workout (functional strength, constantly varied, performed at a high intensity) and they will be gassed. Why is it that an elite runner crumbles when exposed to the training stimuli of a CrossFit workout, but a CrossFitter, with little exposure to long distance events will perform very well, even excel in such events? The answer is partially related to the distinction between cardio respiratory endurance and stamina. Dr. Jim Cawley defines cardiovascular respiratory capabilities as "the ability of body systems to gather, process, and deliver oxygen" and stamina as "the ability of body systems to process, deliver, store and utilize energy" (cited in CrossFit Journal, 22: 2004).

Note that both cardio respiratory function and stamina are 2 of the ten criteria that define fitness. And the one element of fitness that is foundational to both cardio respiratory function and stamina? STRENGTH. Long distance runners do not have the strength to handle the load of a typical CrossFit workout and thus are often left gassed. They lack stamina. While CrossFitters, on the other hand, are constantly exposed to training stimuli that develop strength, stamina and cardiovascular respiratory ability. Our cardiovascular respiratory capability does not develop in isolation from strength, so why train as though the two are mutually exclusive?

I hope this is not redundant but I constantly hear people say that they need more cardio, even as they are gasping for breath from a typical CrossFit workout.

Friday, January 8, 2010

snatch at it!

The snatch is the diva of athletic performance - and for good reason. It is scary to hurl yourself underneath a weighted barbell and it takes mad skills to execute the snatch. These fine fluxers are working on their fast twitch muscles, which are necessary to drive yourself under the bar. The snatch, along with the clean and jerk, have been described by Mark Rippetoe as gymnastics with a barbell. Tremendous flexibility and spatial awareness is necessary with these movements as well as coordination, speed and strength.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

The Bison Is Here

Sorry for the short notice but Kevin is bringing the bison down from Rose Valley tomorrow afternoon. Unfortunately I am not able to spot people on their orders so please do your best to come by to pick up your meat and pay. The cost is $4.50/pound. Please try and be at flux before one to pay. If the meat has not arrived by then I will store it for you.

Please make the checks out to Lange's Country Meats.

Flux CrossFit Merchandise

We still have lot's of flux CrossFit clothes available.

And just a friendly reminder to those who still haven't paid for their clothes. Please pay.

hoodies $50.00
long sleeve thermal $35.00
t-shirts $20.00

Robb Wolf podcast #9

Another informative podcast on health, nutrition and athletic performance from Robb Wolf.


Here is an outline of the topics covered.

  1. Dairy vs soy study
  2. Supplementing with amino acids / Too much protein?
  3. Soup / Omega 3 eggs
  4. Symmetry & Paleo Diet / Nuts / High Doses of Vit C & E / Bacon /Tinker well
  5. Thyroid Removal & Paleo Diet
  6. Low Carb / Type II Diabetes / Restless Legs
  7. Chia Seeds
  8. Periodization to improve in all physical aspects

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

More Food Information

Resident fluxer and locavore Katherine introduced me to Farmgate foods, a small, polyculture farm outside of Maclean, Saskatchewan. Here is the website: http://www.farmgatefood.ca/

Check out the photos of the animals! The baby goats are way too cute. These are domestic animals living the way they are supposed to be living.

I also really enjoyed reading the Food For Thought link at the top of the page.

New Link on Website

Hey everybody,

Check out the new page on our website "Recommended Readings"

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

The Anatomy of the Clean

Check out this video of the clean courtesy of Greg Everett's Catalyst Athletics.


Here is a paraphrased summary that I put together of the three pulls of the clean from Greg Everett's book Olympic Lifting: A Complete Guide for Coaches and Athletes 2nd ed. (2009).

The fundamentals are a given and they include the hook grip, the stance and the grip position itself. Stance: the stance is narrower than it is for the squat on the clean and the jerk. The hook grip is used - thumb around the bar followed by the fingers over the thumb. Grip position should be just outside of the thighs. Remember that because the clean is a dynamic lift in which the feet leave the floor there are two positions for the feet: the jumping and the receiving position. This means that after every single clean the feet must be repositioned back to the jumping stance.

The execution: There are three pulls: the pull from the floor, the pull from the mid thigh and the pull from the middle. Most of the time we are pulling from the mid-thigh (a hang power clean) rather than the floor. The reason for this is that the further down you go with the bar the more opportunity for things to go awry.

With the initial pull from the floor to mid-thigh there should be little to no change in the angle of the back. Any excessive shift in the angle of the back will lead to the dreaded leading of the hip. You know you are leading with the hips when your bar bounces off of your thigh and rainbows out.

The Second pull: This pull is all about the aggressive hip and leg drive. It is the work of the second pull to elevate the barbell in order to facilitate the pull under the bar. In essence the second pull is going to suspend the bar in air momentarily and it is your job as the athlete to quickly change direction from pulling up and elevating the bar to then pulling down and getting under the bar. Notice in this video that once the bar reaches a certain height there is a radical reversal of direction on the part of the athlete. The bar is inert when the athlete pulls her or himself under the bar. The second pull begins at mid-thigh as the bar ascends above the knee. At this point the knees are coming forward (also referred to as the scoop). The bar must be kept tight to the body. If it does move away from the body the thighs will slam against the bar as the shoulders move back. If you keep the bar in proximity to the thighs this will be avoided as the shoulders are pulled back.

The third pull: The athlete now must aggressively pull her or himself down under the bar to rack the barbell on the shoulders. You do not drop under the bar passively you PULL yourself under the bar. This pull requires an active retraction of the shoulder blades. You are pulling the bar back into the shoulders. This pull requires patience. The athlete does not pull the elbows back and retract the shoulders until the proper height of the bar is achieved. Prematurely pulling the elbows back will result in 'muscling up' the barbell with the arms.

The elbows must whip around the bar aggressively. An excessively tight grip on the bar will make it difficult to rack the bar on the shoulder. In fact, you release the grip as the elbows whip around to successfully rack the bar on the shoulders.


Jane's OHS

Jane's gorgeous overhead squat.

In this photo you can see that Jane's knees are tracking out in line with the foot. Remember that the further angled the feet the more the knees have to push out to the side.

Here Jane's knees could be pushing out more to track in line with the feet. This could be a result of too wide of a stance or just plain fatigue (she is in the middle of a grueling metabolic workout).

shoulders- Her shoulders are actively pulling up. A good visual cue is the creases in her shirt around the shoulders, which indicate that she is pulling her shoulders up. Think holding the sky up with the bar.

Cindy on Saturday

This past Sunday we did Cindy: As many rounds as possible in 20 min of: 5 pull-ups, 10 push-ups and 15 squats.