« Rest Day | Main | WOD 10.10.12 »

WOD 10.10.12

For Time:
Row 2000m

Post time to comments.
compare to 5.20.12

Related Links:
Olympian Nick Peterson reviews his 2K strategy
Olympian Erin Cafaro talks about how to warm-up on the erg
MWOD: Better Compression for Faster Rowing
MWOD: Better Rowing


Underneath The Hoodie: Margie Lempert

Vital Stats:
Height: 5’ 1” and a lil’ bit
Weight: 140 pounds
Born: September 4, 1977, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Skoolin’: Smith College, Psychology Major, but...basically Theater.
Favorite Way to Eat an Egg: Fried duck eggs in bacon grease (!!!)

In 1984, a small indie film took the world by storm.  Hatched in the academic, “Jewy”, suburb of Cheltenham, PA, “An Actress At Seven” was written and directed by its precocious child star, Margie Lempert, a captivating wunderkind of (you guessed it) seven years old, who chose that year to elbow her way into cinematic relevancy.  Buoyed by strong supporting performances from her neighborhood friends and a elegiac, focused, and winning performance by her grandfather (respectfully described as a “More Jewy Mr. Miyagi,” referencing fellow 1984 Oscar nominee Pat Morita)  “An Actress at Seven” was Lempert’s first major film production.  After a promising career as a young actress, involvement in several prestigious collegiate theater programs, and jobs at Roundabout Theater Company and the New York Foundation for the Arts, Lempert has seemingly fallen off the map.  Rumors have circulated about her becoming involved with an underground movement centered around carnivorous barbell routines, raw milk, and breast toughening seminars.  

It’s true, mostly.  Long before the first Tough Titsday or group class WOD performed to a soundtrack of Simon and Garfunkel, Margie was a fledgling thespian, growing up in suburban Pennsylvania.  An only child, from a young age Margie would record herself telling stories.  Whether they were of her own creation, or a recording of the entire script of her pre-K school play (naturally playing all of the roles,) Margie was a born storyteller.  In Cheltenham, a smart, racially mixed suburb, these stories were great entertainment for an only child, but quickly developed into something more.  In the summers, Margie began attending an arts camp, concentrating in theater, and began taking acting classes when she was ten, continuing through high school.  In high school, Margie would always act in the fall play, but skip the spring musical, since she didn’t like to sing.  Like everything in high school, the drama program was shot through with politics and jockeying for status, which Margie largely ignored.  This led to her often being cast as wacky, quirky characters, but rarely the ingenue, despite her peers widely accepting that she was a very good performer.

Margie was a late bloomer in high school, somewhat lackadaisical academically, prone to procrastination, and not yet secure in her self.  This began to change when she had the opportunity to attend the Alexander Muss High School in Israel during her Junior year.  Margie spent 8 weeks participating in a program for American high school students.  Living in a dorm, and attending classes on site while still responsible for her coursework from back home, Margie had her first taste of the intensity and independence of a college environment.  School came alive for her there, aided by spending half of every day visiting the historical sites and landmarks they were studying.  Margie returned to the US inspired, albeit with some very strong culture shock.

Margie left for Smith College better prepared for the pace and rigors of college life, but didn’t anticipate some of the unique issues attending a women’s college would bring.  Freshman year was tough, and Margie seriously considered transferring, but upon returning for her Sophomore year, she found a more comfortable niche in campus, and finally felt like she had a “place” within the greater student body.  This was aided, no surprise, by a heavy involvement in the theater scene.  While Margie enjoyed her collegiate acting opportunities, her real passion was for organizing and developing theater with her peers. She was heavily involved in the leadership of the Student Theater Committee and a member of the “Sikos,” a campus improv group.  

Margie’s first inkling that a life on stage might not be for her came during her Junior year at a semester long program at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center.  Despite being located on beautiful oceanfront property, a trip to Russia and London, and high level instruction, the program was a crucible of critique, self-obsession, and interpersonal drama.  In what seems like a scene from a movie, the program was capped with each student going alone into a room.  Inside, all of the program’s instructors sat around a table, and proceeded to deconstruct the students strengths and weaknesses while the student sat mutely and embraced their shortcomings.  While extremely powerful, the whole experience was also “somewhat horrible,” and changed Margie’s sense of self in regards to theater specifically, and life more generally.

Returning to school, Margie began focusing more energy into directing theater, as her prior experiences had turned her off the fishbowl world of being an actor.  The behind the scenes work agreed with her more, and upon graduation she left for New York City, and a job at the Roundabout Theater Company.  During this time Margie was directing as well, but began to get even more involved in the administration side of theater, and started to work in production, stage, and company management.  After an amazing but stressful turn as the company manager with a troupe travelling to Romania, Margie landed at the New York Foundation for the Arts, where she worked for eight years.  

It’s in this eight year period where the heroine of this story began to think about exercise, healthy lifestyle, and making changes to a diet that was self-described as “notorious.”  Make no mistake, this was not an overnight change, but a slow march towards self-realization, with many bumps and twists along the way.  Even after Margie began to think that exercise should be something she should try it was “a year or two” before she set foot in a gym.  Every night, Margie would set an alarm, ostensibly to wake herself up in the morning and propel her towards the gym.  Every morning Margie would turn her alarm off and simply not go.  For the sake of narrative, it would be convenient to say that one day trumpets blared, angels sang, and the ghost of Jack LaLanne kicked Margie in the ass, but it didn’t happen that way.  On this one particular day, she just went.  

Slope Fitness was Margie’s new arena, and after getting her feet wet Margie became a fixture, firmly ensconced on the treadmills and hogging 10 lb dumbbells 5-6 days a week.  Margie created programs for herself, culled mainly from magazines, but sensed that there was more out there in the world of fitness that she was missing.  

As her interest in fitness grew, and her interest in theater waned, Margie began to approach food in ways she never had before.  Always a bit on the chubby side, Margie’s classic diet consisted mainly of a mix of pizza, chicken sandwiches, muffins, chinese food, and french fries.  Chicken sandwiches in particular were Margie’s calling card, and became a bit of an inside joke among her friends.  What else would someone who had never eaten fish, ate no red meat, and was basically “half a vegetarian” turn to for sustenance?  Slowly though, as she read more and worked out harder, Margie began to expand her culinary repertoire.  If it all began when she realized she liked broccoli (!!!), the piece de resistance was a meal at Nobu, the chic Tribeca mecca of sushi fusion.  Margie had a meal of foods she had never had before- rock shrimp, lobster, cod, and more.  The meal poked the final holes in Margie’s definition of herself as a picky eater, and she began to harness an adventurous and “cavalier” spirit in regards to trying new foods.  

Still, Margie was looking for someone who could answer her larger fitness questions, and like most searches, this story involves some few dead ends.  Margie met a trainer, a woman with a background in competitive bodybuilding, who agreed to help her improve her body composition.  Starting by having Margie go into the bathroom at Slope Fitness, take her clothes off and pose, the trainer put Margie on a diet restricted to 1100 calories a day.  This began a tailspin of sorts of disordered eating, issues with body image and self-confidence, and a general case of someone getting their “head all fucked up” by someone who should have known better (and saw Margie only once!).

Reeling from this experience, but committed to finding a fitness and diet lifestyle that worked for her, Margie was at Slope Fitness one day when another trainer sidled up to her.  Maybe he recognized a diamond in the rough, a student in search of a teacher, or maybe he just wanted someone to torture.  He taught Margie the elements of an air squat- weight in the heels, proper depth, a flat back.  Soon thereafter, he had her do something he called Tabata Squats.  They continued to train together, although for a while Margie didn’t realize that what she was doing was called Crossfit.  Slowly it became more clear that there was a distinct method to this madness, and after the trainer left town, Margie dabbled in Main Site workouts, then finally made her way to Crossfit NYC.  Through the (well-muscled) grapevine, Margie heard that there was “some guy in Park Slope” and promptly began to investigate.  

It had only been a month after David had found CFSBK a home at the Brooklyn Lyceum when Margie and he began to exchange emails.  Soon they met, and Margie was surprised to find David to be “small, and nice.”  Margie quickly became a regular- one of the few consistent females.  Margie began to hang out with some of the other “believers” - namely Alumnus Coach Extraordinaire Shane Williams, and some guy named Jeremy.  They all grew close, with each other, with David, and with the community that became the CFSBK we know today.  Margie began to take on some coaching responsibilities, and also acted as an ambassador, making her Crossfit Hajj to California (with Shane and then David) to meet and train with the likes Robb Wolf, Adrian Bozman, Jason Khalipa (reportedly a total bro) and Pat Barber, in an impromptu guest workout in Tony Budding’s infamous shed.  Later, Margie also did media coverage for the International Powerlifting Federation’s World Championships in India and South Africa, contributing commentary and interviews of the athletes and board members.  More importantly, she got to watch a LOT of people from all over the world lift a LOT of heavy weight.

As Margie progressed more and more as a coach and athlete, lifting weights and physical culture spurred an iconic evolution. Margie describes the transformation from a cigarette smoking, chicken sandwich annihilating, theater junkie to a strong and fit athlete, coach, and role model as “a path to self-possession.” As she began to understand more about her body, her physical capabilities, and her community, Margie also began to think more deeply about food quality, yearning for a deeper understanding of where her food came from, and how it was made. She began to visit local farms and thought briefly of farming herself. She dismissed that idea quickly when she realized that she was more interested in animal husbandry (probably because thats where they keep the deliciousness). Margie left NYFA as she became more deeply integrated with the gym, and after a year of “sitting around” had a revelation that she absolutely had to go to school. A year later, and she’s a happy resident of the greatest college town on earth, Madison, Wisconsin, once again chasing a deeper and more nuanced understanding of how the world works, and how to work with the world.

CFSBK is now on Instagram! find us at crossfitsouthbrooklyn
Happy Birthday to the best Coach and Admin in the world, JESSICA M. FOX!!!!! <3

Reader Comments (42)

I find it nearly impossible to picture Margie with ten-pound dumbbells. We miss you!

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterStella

Another fine under the hoodie. Who wrote this one?

A pleasure to read. Philly in the house. Go Birds.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJR

Tomorrow is my birthday, and I'll be having some drinks tomorrow night at Pacific Standard in honor of reaching a milestone birthday! Would love to see you all, especially my fellow 6 a.m'ers.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJoy

Happy Birthday Coach Lady Fox!

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJoy

Happy birthdays Jess Fox and Joy Mele! Woo hoo!

2000m PR today! Or as Ryan Joyce calls it, a "KH".

Nov 2010 - 9:21
March 2012 - 8:37
May 2012 - 8:39
Today - 8:33


October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKH

Oh, and today's WOD suuuuuuuccccckkkkkkeeeedddd! It was cruel of Management to not post it until I had already arrived at the gym. Cruel.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJoy


Happy birthdays, ladies!

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterStella

happy birthday ladies!

jess fox.. my present this year to you was letting you drink my beer during flip cup.

joy mele.. my present to you may be letting you drink my beer when I encourage an inappropriate game of flip cup at the bar. (maybe)


October 11, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterasta

Happy Bday Jess.

This question principally is for current strength cyclers and alumni, though any feedback would be good. Just two classes in, and I am perpetually famished. I know that individual metabolisms differ, etc., but I am en fuego. Already today I had an omelet, and just dusted a respectably large turkey sandwich. And it's not yet 11:00. I've always had a big appetite, but this is different. I am not suggesting I am in the 30+ taco realm, but I wouldn't shrink from the opportunity. Anyone have a similar experience? No change? I am not concerned, merely curious. Tx

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTom


Eat more. especially after your work outs. Throw a sweet potato in here and there. Be a manimal.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJR


I had the pleasure of interviewing, compiling, and documenting the fabulous Ms. Lempert for this piece.

If you liked it now, get ready for when the conclusionary paragraph is added! Should be forthcoming very soon.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNoah

Came in rowed 2 X 14minutes

Pulled a 2:06 Split, 3321m for the first HR at 150
Pulled a 2:10 Split, 3121m. for 2nd at 140ish.

Charmel clocked first hr for me, the 2nd was hard to do and keep track of time.

@jakeL from yesterday symptoms include severely swollen lip, and hives. Not fun. Benedryl has been knocking me out

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDH3


This is so utterly normal that it has approached and entered the realm of dogma.

You will not be merely "hungry." You are likely to experience something closer to what Corbett calls "vampire blood lust." It's a compulsion.

Best advice: listen to it. It's how you recover.

You are likely to ignore it only once or twice, because the results are horrific. Namely, you will feel like capital-S shit.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered Commentermichele

Happy birthday J-girls! Loved this under the hoodie--well done taking up the mantle, Noah. We miss Margie.

I write from St. Louis where I did some sad-ass treadmill sprints in the hotel gym this morning. Wah-wah.

Nice work on the 2K, KH!!

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCharlotte

I just emailed David and Chris about this but thought I'd post it in case they didn't read their emails during the day.

@Coaches: I don't think of myself as a wimp, but I have to admit, I want to wimp out of today's 2K row. I did the deadlift/running couplet on Tuesday and then the squat/burpees couplet yesterday and as a result, my legs/hammies are shot and my back is sore. I feel like I would not do at all well on the 2K. I'd still like to do a workout and am happy to work hard. Can I come in today and just do the tabata Angie on the racks in the back? Pullups, pushups, situps sound manageable even though the hundred squats would hurt a bit. I could run my own clock and I'm pretty sure I would not get in anyone's way. I was planning to come in for the 6PM class Let me know if this is possible. Happy to suck it up and do the 2K or whatever else you guys advise.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSamir Chopra

Happy Birthday Jess.

The 34th Birthday is known for:

1) Eating Tacos
2) Bringing it in 34 times
3) Eating Tacos
4) Tequila?
5) Getting Awesome.

I hope you accomplish all those things to day. Happy Birthday!!!

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDH3

Tom - A few of the best pieces of advice from Margie that I've been given thus far re: strength: 1. Eat your face off. 2. Talk to Jeremy about food

Speaking of Margie, I miss her. Fantastic write up - one of my favourites. Thank you Noah!

Happy birthday Jess!

KH I am sad to have missed yet another "KH" so you'll have to do it again for me.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJB


October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLisa F

8:08.03 on the 2K, trying again at 8am tomorrow.

Happy birthday Jess, I'll bring you a belated six pack of home brewed Pumpkin Ale in about 6 weeks

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKrishnan

@Tom Anytime you want to eat 30+ tacos. Give me a shout. Its going down November 1st.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDH40Tacos

Ali Taco and the 40 Heaves

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNoah

unnecessary status update: changed my homepage to CFSBK because F**k fake yahoo news and its seductive headlines. Sucker no more.

And, Jess, I owe you a sizable container of Crack (sauce)... good on just about anythang

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLisaFern

Last Post....

Margie, we miss you. Great write up Noah.

Also @AnderewMigdail has been owning Facebook. Check it out

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterADDH3

Hey gang!

Thanks to Noah for such a nice interpretation of our conversation. Very fun to be on the other side of the process.

All is going well in dairy land. I am awash in grass, cows, co-ops, bicycles and bare feet. There's no shortage of beer and football either. I actually ride my bike here and look forward to cross country skiing and ice fishing in the winter. I've settled in at Ford's gym, a hybrid sort of establishment: half regular gym, half black iron gym. Lots of powerlifters, strongmen and bodybuilders on one side, and stair climbers on the other. Oh yeah, and then there's the boxing ring...

Needless to say, I miss CFSBK lots and look forward to seeing you all on winter break!

And now back to reading about cover crops...

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMargie

About 15 minutes of Foam rolling my legs :)

20 strokes @ 20S/M
20@Cruise Pace

2K Row: 7:48.8

HUGE thanks to JakeL for being my coxwain. I can't emphasize enough how important having a pair of eyes on you and your monitor the whole time is. I was able to stay about :05 faster the whole time because of him.

Did the standard breakdown ala Coach Nick which worked Perfectly. Started with a hard Power 20 at about 1:40-45 and then cruised at 1:58 between power sets until about the 1000m mark at which point my cruise pace started to creep into the low 2's. Kept my power stroked at like 1:55 after that.. was really looking forward to the last 250, really wanted to go to a terrible place which I think I did, I know I was hitting 1:40 towards the end.

I was anxious about this all day. Feel like a weight has been lifted from my shoulders! Great workout!

October 11, 2012 | Registered CommenterDavid Osorio

Happy birthday to my favorite Lady-gal, the fantastic Mrs. Fox! Love you much.


Broccoli is a 'gateway food'? Margie FTW


I can't hear this now without thinking of you. Kick ass and eat cheese.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterFox

Happy Birthday Jess!

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCharmel

I also realized a huge error! I posted that I did a 29 minute tabata Angie when I really did a 24 minute Tabata Angie. Please update your paper work at home

Jess Fox RuleZ!!!!!

October 11, 2012 | Registered CommenterDavid Osorio

@ everybody - thanks for sharing your thoughts, which I think can be summarized as "eat!" "Manimal" it is...

@ Dan - it's on! I am guessing that if each of your personalities has a few tacos, you hit 40 handily.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTom

Did this WOD at like 3pm.

This was my first 2K for time so I wasnt sure what to expect. I planned on following Coach Nicks advice. The first 1000m felt good. The second is where the pain really sets in... when you realize you have ANOTHER 1k to go and your body is already beginning to scream. However, I found Coach Nicks strategy to work perfectly. Its really important to break it up into manageable, smaller units.


It was awesome being Davids coxwain. Never underestimate the power of helping someone else succeed. It feels good. Great job David! Way to suffer.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJakeL

Happy Birthday Jess!!

Samir - Had I read your post ealier, I would have joined your movement!

That is just a kick ass picture of Margie!

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDmak

Great write-up on Margie. We miss you!

Happy Birthday, Jess!

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKMo

Happy b-day, Jess!

GIANT 5pm class with Josh! (There were all of 4 of us there...)

Haven't done a 2k at CFSB before so I said "to hell with my destroyed legs, lets do this" just to get a time on the books for future comparisons. Was just aiming for sub-8. I pushed it pretty hard going out, but somehow managed to hang on all the way through before really redlining it for the final 250.


Ended up surprising myself with that, super happy with it.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTodd

Happy birthday Jess and Joy!

I totally chickened out of a 2k row. F---------- that.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCrystal



Last 400 was terrible. Started feeling ill. Thanks to Aileen, meLo and Jess for staying on top of me. Considering how not fresh my legs were from yesterday I'm kinda thinking I could do better? Heh.

October 11, 2012 | Registered CommenterSarah la Rosa





October 11, 2012 | Unregistered Commentermichele

Also- I didn't want to come tonight. And those are the nights that I always make myself go.

And then I'm always happy I did. The end.

And happy birthday Jess, again. Xoxox

October 11, 2012 | Registered CommenterSarah la Rosa


It's probably late enough at night that no one will see this and I need to post it again tomorrow, but...


You know the drill: Sunday, we gather at 7:30, quiz starts at 8. Pacific Standard, 82 4th Avenue at St. Mark's.


October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterStella

DIY press: 105x3x5. Starting to get heavy. Used a belt and that helped. Would love to get up to 115# which would be a PR at 3x5. We shall see.

2000M row: 7:15.1

First time rowing 2000m and I am super happy with this time. A little surprised considering how sore I was today (really, really sore). Tried to stay at 25spm with a split of 1:45 - 1:50. The power 20 at 1000 really gassed me and I struggled to get back up to my target pace. Tank felt totally empty at the final push at 250.

And on a personal note: I have noticed at lot of "go eagles" nonsense in the comments. Lets not forget where we are people - GO G-MEN!

October 11, 2012 | Registered CommenterDoug Jones

Thanks for the love guys! Great writeup Noah! We miss you Margie.

Did yesterdays workout today.
21-15-9 squats at 145lbs
30-20-10 burpees strict
Time- 12:26 ish
-did the first set of squats as 14-7, 2nd set as 5-5-5 and last set as 5-4.
-burpees were slow and hard and while I kept them strict I may have started to snake a little as I fatigued.
-thanks to the hubby and la Rosa for getting me through this!

Also props to the few and the brave who came to classes today. Yes a 2k row sucks and we seemed to have a lot of folks who purposefully skipped today. Note to self, next time you all won't know in advance we're rowing a 2k... ;)

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterlady fox

Jess- your burpees were super strict and clean, definitely impressive.

October 11, 2012 | Registered CommenterSarah la Rosa

Did the break down and it worked out great!

2000m row: 7:03

Was happy with the result, didn't really know what to expect for a 2K, haven't done one in a while. Shout out to the huge 5PM class and GO GMEN !

October 12, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLiam

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>