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Rest Day

Coach Fox talking to Rob about sliding the bar higher up on his thighs before "jumping" the bar to his shoulders. What's a good cue or pointer you've heard recently?

News and Notes

  • Have you signed up yet for the 2015 CrossFit Open? We're so close to Open Workout 15.1! There will be Rx'd and scaled versions of each workout, so you can only help CFSBK’s team by signing up. Sign up here, and after you complete your registration, make sure to join CFSBK’s team (you can see everyone who has already signed up here). 
  • Want to work out on Sunday at 9am and bring your kid/s? Now you can! Sign them up at the Front Desk for CFSBK Kids Club, and learn more here.
  • LOTS OF NEW ITEMS UP IN LOST AND FOUND! Check the photoz in Flickr, and claim your stuff by 2/26 or we're donating it. 
  • Coach Nick wants you to know about new job opening at Row New York, a great organization that teaches kids rowing and provides college prep. Here's their mission: "The mission of Row New York is to transform the lives of NYC's under-resourced teens through the discipline of rowing combined with rigorous academic and college readiness support." Learn more here.

Stomachs and Eyeballs: The End of the LFPB Challenge

By Chris Fox

I hope you've had a great first few weeks of the year and have learned a thing or two about how the food and lifestyle choices you make affect you personally. Even if you didn't participate in the Look Feel Perform Better Challenge, we hope you’ll find the following notes useful.

Many of the principles that we use to structure the Look Feel Perform Better Challenge come from the folks over at Precision Nutrition. I learned about the work John Berardi was doing years ago through Eric Cressey and have been a fan ever since. Even though nutrition, sleep, and recovery can seem like complicated subject matters (and to be sure sometimes we bring complicated feelings to the game), PN does a really good job of utilizing the K.I.S.S. method (Keep It Simple, Stupid). I found out about Barry Sears and The Zone Diet years ago as well when I became involved with CrossFit. That book taught me that quantifying foods made sense. I mean, we quantify our lifts and WOD times and journal diligently—why not food?

The fact is though that counting calories or blocks can be a nightmare for some folks. It can bring about neuroses about food and generally make some people nuts or worse, depressed when they don't "get it right," which brings me back to PN. I came across this chart that I think really helps with quantifying food/calories using my favorite method of K.I.S.S. You can find it here. It lays out pretty plainly how to eyeball portion sizes when eating either at home or out. If you were freaking out with the Level 2 eating or want to refine Level 1 a bit, you should really check it out to help you plan better. Which brings me back to the title of this post… 

It's been said before that if you don't plan to prepare, you plan to fail. If you think about the times when you are most likely to go "off plan," they are likely times that are preceded by the statement "I'm starving!" You skipped lunch, worked late, and now it's Happy Hour. Or you skipped breakfast and now its lunchtime and a burger with fries and a soda sounds amazing. Your eyeballs become bigger than your stomach and you go for instant gratification. Planning ahead and eating regular meals at somewhat regular times is one of the most important steps you can take toward being lean, fit, and healthy.

If you didn’t do the LFPB Challenge with everyone else, it’s never too late to jump on board and start cleaning up your eating habits. Learn more here.

For those who did participate: Don't forget to submit your post challenge write up here. Please get it in by Monday so we've got enough time to go through them all. The point of this is to help you assess how you did and what your plan is moving forward. I've had so many people come up to me or send me emails about the progress they're making.  The LFPB challenge was just the start of a much larger plan to continue with your progress, refine your approach and keep your momentum. At the potluck we'll expand upon this idea and talk more about how CFSBK would like to support your progress moving forward. 

Come To the Potluck and Awards Ceremony!
On Saturday, February 21nd, at 7:00pm, we'll be hosting our community potluck and LFPB Challenge awards ceremony. If you participated in the Challenge, this is a great opportunity to close it out with all the other folks who joined in over the last 6 weeks. We'll be presenting awards to everyone who went above and beyond with their commitment and consistency and there will be a short presentation about what to do now that the Challenge is over with some ideas to help you keep the momentum moving in the right direction. This event is open to everyone, regardless of participation. 

Who: The entire CFSBK community is invited!
Date: Saturday, 2/21/2015
Time: 7pm-9pm or so
Kid Friendly? Yes! We'll have the bouncy castle back. Sorry, no four-legged friends. 


The U.S. Government Is Poised To Withdraw Longstanding Warnings About Cholesterol The Washington Post

Reader Comments (32)

Saturday's Programming

Front Squat

Fitness: 3 x 3 Linear Progression
Start a bit off where you left off last cycle. Aim to add 5-10 lbs each week.
Performance: 95% x 1, 75% x 10

Post loads to comments.

Look Feel Perform Better Capacity Test

AMRAP 10 minutes:
5 Kipping Pull-Ups
10 Push-Ups
15 Air Squats

Rest 2 minutes, then:

AMRAP 3 minutes:
Max Calories Rowed

Post rounds and Rx to comments.
Compare to 1.1.2015.

February 10, 2015 | Registered CommenterDavid Osorio

6am with McDowell and Mr. Nick.

Partnered with Dan G. on the front squats. Still working off my 290# 1RM, so did 265# x 1 for my single and then 185# x 10. I've started using a belt again for front squats higher than 225 since my back has started to feel like the weak point (vs. legs or mid-section).

For the WOD, BK and I did a modified workout to mix it up a bit. We did:


3 MU's
5 HSPU's
15 Squats

Hit 8 rounds plus 1 MU at the buzzer. Did all of the MU's unbroken (thanks to Brad for some tips last week on my kip), and all of the HSPU's kipping + unbroken except for one round where I lost balance and fell.

Cash out was a lot of walking around and talking while panting.

Stay warm friends.

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterMichael Affronti

There have been a ton of great cues over my time at CFSBK. Some that really helped were:

1. Pretend there is a light switch half way up your thigh. When you are pulling from the knee it should be slow and controlled until you hit that light switch and then explode the hips forward. I think that was a David cue.

2. Frankie found a good way of stressing "elbows up" during clean. He said to imagine your elbows could go so high that your shoulders actually spin them right back around. I tended to only push my elbows up when I felt they were dropping. This was his way of telling me to never stop pushing them up.

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterMattyChm


February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterLindstar

6am with McDowell & Nick

FSQ: Parterned w/ Elliott. 225x1, 175x10 Everything moved well.

Modified Metcon w/ Michael:
3 MU
15 Squats
I counted 9 rounds, everything unbroken. Michael - I think you missed counted. This was a fun WOD. In the future I'd change it to a 10 AMRAP to avoid sandbagging the air squats. I definitely could have transitioned faster and moved quicker on the squats. I say this because Michael and I had more than enough gas to finish the last round in less than 1 minute.

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterBK

Awful training day yesterday. Just couldn't get shit together.

385 x 1
305 x 10
Felt good, good speed.

245 F

Couldn't get low in 225, so Ro encouraged me to go heavier. I kept getting the bar at 245 to "nipple height" according to folks watching me, but barely dropped under it.

Got 2 muscle-ups, RX
Whoo boy. I'm still mad about this one. This is some of my worst muscle-up performance in about a year.
Finished the burpees in about 5 mins, got through the overhead squats quickly and got to the rings just before 7 mins. Then I spent three minutes completely dicking around. For some reason, I couldn't get a good grip on the rings and kept failing on my left side. Don't know what happened, but I know I can do better than this.

Thanks to Ro for the encouragement. Will do better next time.

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterMatt Katz

Also thanks to Pierre for encouraging me to work on muscle-ups when I'm fatigued. He suggested a 1 minute ride on the assault bike followed by muscle-ups for 5 rounds, and I'm going to start doing that at OG.

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterMatt Katz

6am. FSQ: 135x5 / 165x4 / 195x1 / 227.5x1 / 180x9. Failed the last rep here. I just couldn't hold on to the rack position. I felt like I had the power left in my legs but I knew going into that rep that I was going to have trouble holding on.

WOD: 10 rounds + 1 pull-up + 59 cal. I was dreading this test when I woke up but I am really happy with my performance here. I hit 9 rounds + 9 pull-ups + 58 cals when we tested this on Jan 1. I wanted to hit 60 cals on the rower and I really should have, I just didn't turn it up at the end early enough. Anyway, good progress here so I am pleased.

@Matt Katz - Just have to say that I always enjoy seeing the crazy weights you post. Keep it up :)

February 13, 2015 | Registered CommenterElliott

8am lifts

Front Squat

Bench Press
Today was the 100% x2x2 day. It did not go as well as I would have liked.
260x1, F
260x1, F
The first rep of each set was smooth, but the 2nd fell flat. Wah, wah. I test next on Wednesday, we shall see.

Clean and Jerk

Clean Pulls

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterFox

Last night at 7:30

(95x2, 115x2, 135x2), 145x2, 150x2, 150f
150 is a PR for me, so that was chill. Third time I tried it the pull was definitely high enough, I was just too slow to get under it. Good cue for yesterday was that I was definitely pulling before my shoulders got behind the bar, causing me to go forward. I still need to put in work here to smooth that out.

WOD - Made it through 25 OHS rx'd. This is essentially a burpee workout for me with a sprinkling of OHS at the end. Last year, I only made it through 15 OHS at 75#, so this is for sure a marked improvement. I just need to stop bs'ing on burpees to get them done faster to leave more time for other stuff.

Been putting in time alternating work on muscle up stuff and handstand push-ups. Last night I worked on HSPUs for a while, and I was finally able to successfully lower my head to an abmat without falling off the wall. Doesn't sound like much, I guess, but that is major progress for me. Been struggling with that for a while, as I think subconsciously I've been worried about losing control and crashing down on my neck. Now to figure out how to get back up once my head is on the ground...

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterMichael C.

Best Cues:

Four-way tie:

(1) Think of driving you head up into the ceiling when HBBS'ing (Noah)
(2) The snatch is the road and the bar is the car (Frankie)
(3) Stop crying! (Adele)
(4) Really, stop crying! Do I need to call the Waambulance you little baby. (Adele)

@BenWit - just saw your comment yesterday re noone posting on the blog at your new gym. Let me know how I can help out. I have written several deeply personal essays that I think people will find both inspiring and offputting. Also, I am looking for an outlet to distribute my Mean Girls fan fiction (my shrink finds it grotesque, macabre and very concerning - I prefer the term "alternative").

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJay-Star

Front Squat: 215x3x3

WOD with strict pull-ups: 7 rounds + 5 pull-ups + 1 push-up.

I'm really digging my new 8AM on Fridays schedule.

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterSamir Chopra

Can Jay and Ben please have a standup show together?

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterStella

d'awww thanks Elliott.

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterMatt Katz

Arturo told me to start jerking from my strength stance instead of my power which really helped

12:00 class with mcdowell

3 rounds
15 squats
5 chin-ups
5 slow push-ups

45x5, 135x3, 185x3, 185x2)
Hard but made it. Do better warmups and redo next exposure

5 Kipping pull-ups
10 push-ups
15 squats

10 rounds + 21 reps
(+51 reps)

Rest 3:00

Row 3:00
52 cals (-2 reps)

February 13, 2015 | Registered CommenterDavid Osorio

Stella: I could never hang with the Jay-Star. That guy is VIP legend.

When I look at this blog now, I feel like I did when I was younger and had just parted ways with a lady friend. It felt good at first, time to move on. But a few weeks later, I'm wondering what she's up to and driving by her house to take a peek.

I felt bad for complaining about my new box yesterday as I had my best session yet there last night. The coach was engaged, getting around to everyone, and offering good cues. The WOD was well designed and the people were friendly. Maybe I just can't make the transition to mornings?

Anyway, I'm thinking that instead of complaining, I should BE THE CHANGE I want to see in my box. My plan:

Start posting on the blog and demand that people follow suit.
Introduce myself aggressively to everyone.
Ask my own QODs at the beginning of class.
Offer alternative programming with actual strength work.
Get D Fung to stud Benson and take a puppy to class.
Point out other people's form errors to the coaches.
Paper the walls with ITA articles.
I will reform that box!

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterBen W

Thanks Fox!

QOD: I have a million cues swimming in my head... Here are 2 good ones that were directed at me recently:

Extend to toes at the top of the jerk dip (Frank) -- this helps me pull under somehow

Enough with the negative self talk (Everyone) -- this is a work in progress

No working out for me. I'm really sick :(

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterLauren

Also, QOD. I've had tons of helpful cues from coaches and colleagues but a few recent ones stand out.

Via Frankie
"Smooth Pull, Rhythm"
"Weight Balanced"

Via Arturo
"Shoulders Back"

Side Note---

When I first started CrossFitting (mostly by myself at NYSC) I stuck to most of the stuff I was good at for a while. Then when I started taking classes at SBK that was no longer an option, I had to get better at things I sucked at like: double unders, kipping pull ups, the snatch, rowing, etc...David was my man at that point and gave me many cues that are now buried somewhere deep in my cranium but were obviously extremely helpful at that time. I also remember pretty early on, before Nick was "Coach Nick", him spending some time after a class to help Jess and I with rowing technique and it really made it click. When I'm on the platform under Frank's eye it brings me back to those times where I just had to be a learner instead of a teacher, which has so far been simultaneously frustrating, humbling, and enriching. I'm trying to focus on the latter :)

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterFox

Ben W I like that, be the change! I do want to see what aggressively introducing yourself looks like though. I assume a hug and a high-five is involved somewhere.

I get countless good cues especially from Ro... and always so nonchalantly like why would you do it any other way?
One that always sticks in my head for jerks is to track your knees out like you're about to squat and then push up and push your head through your shoulders... total a-ha moment for me!
Second one which helped me hit my last snatch PR was from Fox and it was simple... "That looked easy, what's your PR? 175? Throw 10lbs on that you won't even feel it."

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterBen Lock

8am lifting session:

(45x5, 135x5, 185x3, 225x2, 255x1)
-video shows I got the 3rd one more than halfway but just kinda gave up on it. dammit. Coach says to still go up next week so I'm looking to hit 280 next Friday.

(45x5, 75x5, 95x3, 115x2, 125x1)
-pause on the first rep, felt good.

(135x5, 185x3, 225x2, 265x1)
-switch grip and touch and go. felt really heavy today and my back is feeling pretty fatigued. Can't wait until rest day on Sunday.

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterlady fox

6am with NickDowell

FSQ: 145lbsx3x3

Crash-b's: 3x2000m/5'
These were not fun. I almost turned my alarm off this morning and went back to bed but glad I did these with other people around and got it over with. The bike ride home took twice as long as usual between the cold, wind and my legs being tired.

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterLinda

Lindstar wins… 'TRAP DOOR!'

Very simple, but "Hips Through" when coming up from the bottom of a front squat or clean has been very helpful. I think McDowell was probably the first person I heard that from. I always want to shove my hips back and up, and this keeps me where I need to be.

Really like that Precision Nutrition site, the infographic, and easy hand measurements. I think it's a very doable, realistic way of keeping tabs on food quantity and macro balance.

Bummed to miss out on the potluck next weekend, as I'll be away!

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterWhit H

135 x 5
185 x 4
215 x 3
240 x 3
260 x 3
280 x 3
300 x 3 (PR for reps)

Very happy with this!

Ben W- I like your attitude. Good energy is contagious. But please keep posting here too :)

QOD- so many cues... One that really helped me with wallballs was when Noah told me to think of High Bar Back Squats. Also- from Frankie re: snatches- comparing throwing the bar to throwing a baseball. You have to release it first; so throw and catch. And on jerks- fast feet, fast hands and imagine the ceiling is falling down and push it away.

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterCharlie

Also did a drop set of 3 at 280. That almost felt heavier.

Another cue, this time from Cage- think about knitting your ribs together... This works well for me when bracing.

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterCharlie

Oh my god, if nobody claims that shirt with the cat riding a unicorn from Lost & Found, I WANT IT SO MUCH.

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterStella

[i]Another cue, this time from Cage- think about knitting your ribs together... This works well for me when bracing.[/i]

This is one of the best ones i've gotten too, and think about it all the time now! I thank her because this helped me PR my overhead pressing the other week :D

haha i def know whose cat riding a unicorn shirt that is! (not mine but i wish)

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterCam

wow my html is terrible today!

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterCam

Stella and Cam-I believe Lindstar got there first lol, but I am sure the owner will appear, I mean, come on!

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterCharlie


Muscle Up practice - Strict, banded from the floor:
I must've done 30-40 total
Bands: blue, red, orange, none(fail)

Top tips from Coach JB: a) Pull up with your hands close together to a position where you're mimicking ripping open your shirt (like Clark Kent/Superman). b) Don't worry too much about throwing your head/shoulders forward thru the rings. This kept me focused on pulling tight to my torso, and my hand positioning where it needed to be. Thanks JB!

Deadlift switch-grip practice:
135x9, 185x9, 225x9, 255x9 (alternating switch-grips)
This still feels so weird...

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterChris Yun

OG tonight to try to redeem my squats from Wednesday.

170# for 3x5 using a belt for the first time. I love the belt already :)
1x5 deadlifts at 195#. Round round round. I hate heavy deadlifts.

I definitely rely on cues from all the coaches but sometimes the really basic ones like "Hips through" or "stand it up" during a squat are the things that help most. Arturo's cue to push differently through my feet instead of straight into the floor was also a game changer to my bench press.

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJenny M


Snatch, Max
**Both good, close misses

CJ, Max
**Neither were very good. Missed the clean on both.
300KG total. Ill take it

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJakeL

"C'mon you SUNUVABITCH!!"

Great Cue.

February 13, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJakeL

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