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Rest Day

Frank H. and Coach Jess at CRASH-Bs in Boston a couple of weeks ago. Read on to learn more about Frank!

Better Know a Member: Frank Howell

Welcome back to a newish feature on the CFSBK blog, Better Know a Member! (The name is a play on an old Stephen Colbert segment, Better Know a District.) You all love Underneath the Hoodie and Behind the Desk, and now, in a similar vein, we'll be profiling members from across the CFSBK community. In our previous installment, we introduced you to Maya O. Today it's time to meet Frank H.!

Where were you born and where did you grow up? Born and raised in the suburbs of Detroit. All my family are still there, so I go back pretty often. I have a lot of pride in being from Detroit and think it’s an amazing city if you know how to tap into it. I sometimes flirt with moving back, but then reality sets back in and I remember that Brooklyn is home now.   

How long have you been CrossFitting, and how did you arrive at CFSBK? I think I’ve been coming to CFSBK for about three years or so now. The world of lifting weights was pretty foreign to me before coming here. I’m a runner who never really thought about lifting heavy shit, but as 40 approached I thought it would be an interesting way to help improve my running and try something new. I don’t remember how I heard about CFSBK specifically, but I live on Degraw, just the other side of the canal, so proximity surely had a part in my coming here. The awesome coaches who took time to help a complete novice learn the ropes kept me coming back.    

What are you up to when you're not at 597 Degraw Street? Work wise, I’m in Human Resources in the financial services industry. Yes, I’ve fired a lot of people (but I promise most of them deserved it!), but I also know the right things to say to get you more money if you’ve been laid off, or if you’re interviewing for a new job and negotiating salary. Outside of work I’m a total foodie, cocktail drinker, and traveler. My big trip this year is two weeks in Iran in early May.    

What's the first movie you ever loved? I can’t really remember, but as a child of the 70s, I assume it was ET or Star Wars. However, the movie that I’ve loved the longest has to be Auntie Mame (the Roselyn Russell version, obvi). It’s a bit of a cliché for a gay man my age, but it’s fabulous. It’s all about living life to the fullest.   

You have friends or family coming to visit from out of town. What do you take them to do in NYC? I tell them to go to any of the touristy stuff without me. I’ve thankfully lived here long enough where most of my non-NYC family and friends have been here and already seen the Empire State Building or the Statue of Liberty. If they want to see it again, they are on their own. My preference would be to take them for a bike ride to Coney Island, a trip to the Brooklyn Flea, or for drinks in Red Hook.

Favorite and least favorite lift: Least fave is the Snatch. Its just got so many little pieces to it that I struggle to get organized. I would say that my fave lift is the Low Bar Back Squat, but given the hybrid version I do, lets just leave it at Back Squat.

Any advice for new CFSBKers? Talk to people when you’re lifting! Everyone is pretty cool and it adds to the sense of community when you’re at the gym. Oh, and put your shit away when you’re done using it, nobody likes a sloppy gym!

Yesterday's Whiteboard: Clean | Wall Balls, Double-Unders
Advice for the Newbie Weightlifter Breaking Muscle
Stunning Life-Sized Photos Capture Close Encounters with Whales Wired

Reader Comments (21)

Wednesday's Programming

Front Squat

If you're feeling good then go for the 95%, if not then back off a bit and hit around 90%.

Every 3 minutes for a total of 5 rounds:
5 Push Presses 115/75
10 Deadiftts 115/75
15 Box Jumps 24/20

Score fastest and slowest rounds. Any version of the Box Jump is acceptable today-- Bounding, Stepping, Jump Up/Step Down, Step Up/Drop Down, etc.

March 14, 2016 | Registered CommenterDavid Osorio


A. 3 Rounds
10 Blackburns
5 inchworm to hollow
3 Kick ups

B. Handstand push up

C. 5 rounds for time:
7 pull ups
10 Hand Release push ups
15 sit ups
20 Squats
rest :90

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterCoach Ro

Love the newbie weightlifter article. Very helpful reminders even if you've been after Olympic lifting for awhile!

Also, this might be the best quote I've ever read about the snatch:
There’s no better feeling than flowing through a snatch with the grace and precision of a ballet dancer and the speed of a cheetah.

Sounds about right!

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterAllie B

6am with Jess Fox doing Monday's workout

Hang Clean: Worked up to 231# for my single. Turnover felt fast although I rode the first few down from the top.

WOD: 4 rounds + 20 DU's. Broke up the wallballs as 13/12, 13/12, 10/10/5 x 2.

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterMichael A.

7:30 last night

Cleans : 3@85, 3@105, 3@115, 2@135,1@145, 1@165, 1@185,1@195

Second week in a row I've gotten to 195 on the hang clean which is a PR. Now that I've done it twice I am certain I can get closer to 210 from the hang and I guess a little more if I was pulling from the floor?

Metcon : 3 rounds + some number of wallballs. First 25 WBs went easy enough although I did break the first into 15/10. DUs were a mess. Couldn't get my timing right. I think the first 25 or so were all triples, and doubles. A little better after that but its clear that I need to work on DUs when fatigued more often. As my DUs got better my WBs got worse. I blame all this on repeated attempts at 16.3 over the weekend as my arms and shoulders were as sore as I can ever remember.

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterSean G

7 AM squatting w/Jess. I did HBBSQ instead of FSQ because my wrist wasn't having it in warmups. (Strangely, push press was OK during the WOD.)

OMG, so heavy! I have to readjust my expectations of myself for lifting in group classes vs lifting in strength cycle -- the shorter rest time makes a HUGE difference.

170x5, 195x3, 205x1. I really did not feel like pushing to 95% after how the set of 3 went.

WOD: Rx, although I did step ups for speed's sake and STILL couldn't even come close to Kayleigh's WORST time. (My best/worst: 0:53/1:00; her best/worst: 0:41/0:47.) I can't even wrap my head around that, woman!

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterStella

7am with Jess

Worked up to 185# which is a new PR. Thanks to Jess for letting me give it a go since I was feeling good. It moved fast so there's more here. Just need to, like, take the time to test things every once in awhile.

Metcon Rx
Worst - 1:01 / Best - 0:51
The entirety of the 7am class spent their resting seconds wondering aloud how the ef we could even get to Kayleigh's "worst" round of 0:47.

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterBrendan B

7am with Jess

FSQ worked up to 1 rep at 145, which felt oddly light for being 95% of my 1RM. Realized afterwards that this was my 5 rep working weight- no wonder I was the only one who blurted out "fun!" when asked how squatting went. Now I'm annoyed with myself and itching to get back and go heavier.

WOD@100# 1:12 best/1:31 worst. Fun, will try RX when we see this one next.

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterBen

7 am w/Jess, Wednesday's WOD.

FSQ up to 205. Went a bit light b/c of a rough cycle of squats last time around, but was pleased with how this felt.

Metcon: 1:11 worst, 1:03 best; Rx. I credit that 1:03 round to "Last Nite" by the Strokes coming on at just the right time before the 5th set.

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterChas C.

7 am with Jess: I'm not sure what my maxes anymore because I've been squatting 3x a week with oly so today 165# fs went up like buttah, even though it was toes-y. Working on staying on my heels #quaddominantproblems I'm excited to retest my maxes at some point in the near future. Did the sets of 5 at 135 and sets of 3 at 155. All felt solid.

Then did the workout Rx and like everyone else I do not know how Kayleigh went so fast! You go girl! My slowest was 1:04 and my fastest was :52, went a little faster each round and rebounded the box jumps all rounds except the first. I haven't really been comfortable doing deadlifts super fast in a workout yet b/c they tend to make my low back spicy but today they felt super easy and so far my back is good. Fun morning!

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterNatalie

6am with Jess and McD

FSQ - 195x5, 220x3, 240x1 (92.5%) and back down
Wasn't sure how the heavy single would go since we haven't had a lot of heavy squat exposure this cycle but it moved surprisingly easy. Should have pushed myself to do 95%

WOD - Best 0:59, worst 1:09. Kayleigh was usually finishing her box jumps as I was walking to my box. Fun watching James fruitless efforts to beat her.

For those people who refuse to accept my answer of Peanut Butter Patties and insisting they were Tagalongs here are some facts behind the different names

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterSteve

8am class with Jess and McD. There were only 4 of us!

Worked up to 190# on the hang clean which surprisingly felt really smooth. I've been putting a lot time into figuring out how to get under that bar with my elbows through FAST and it's been paying off. Seeing that my old 1RM was 190# from the floor, I think I have a lot more in me with my cleans. Looking forward to trying heavier weight.

4 rounds + 9 reps for the WOD. For me this was a wall ball slugger. Break downs on the wall balls were 15/15, 10/10/5, 9/8/8, 10/10/5...totally not consistent. All the double unders were broken into 2 sets of 25 except for the last one which was all 50 unbroken.

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterAdam

Front Squat: 145x5, 160x3, 180x1, 160x3, 145x5. These felt heavy.

WOD: Best was my last round of :41, worst was my first round :47. This is my wheelhouse, clearly. Was definitely pushed hard by James at the end to keep up the speed - it was a serious race in the end.

Thank you for the clarification, Steve. Very important issues.

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterKayleigh R

Frank is always fun to talk to and quietly funny. Super chill guy to be around, and one of those

Noon class
Did hang cleans yesterday (up to a few at 242) so did deadlift triples today.
In KGs since they were there and I'm efficient:
Happy with a triple at 352lbs, being how my back has been feeling.

3 Rounds + 25 Wall Ball
This attacked my weakness (gas) immediately. Did the WB as 15/10, then 10/8/7 in an effort to stay below redline but the doubles got me anyway. Then left my med ball and jump rope out like a jabroni from Broville, USA.

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterFox

6am with McDowell

Partnered with Steve (Huntsman) on the f squats
195, 220, 235, 215, 195. Steve made 240 look the way 195 moved for me. Using the excuse that my legs felt it some from yesterday's cleans.

WOD Rx: my times got progressively faster as all I wanted to do was take the gold one time. Started at a leisurely :59 and ended at :42. Rounds 3,4&5 were all bounded box jumps but alas, all efforts were indeed fruitless. My hopes and dreams of entering the games were crushed yet again. Bravo Kayleigh.

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJames A

Can someone explain AG HSPU 1-1-1-1-1
Please hang me if its in the FAQ section I haven't
Discovered it yet. Thanks

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJoseph

@Joseph-- that's the programming for tonight's Anti-Gravity class. If Ro or another coach sees this, he or she can elaborate, but those are single HSPU attempts.

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJosh S.

Rough couple days at work, but finally made it in at 6:30 for Monday's work.

Hang Clean: Knew a new PR was coming after I matched my old PR with a high hang clean last week. Just a question of how much. Old PR was 235.

245 (PR)
265 (PR)
275 (PR... but pretty ugly)

Metcon: 4 rounds + Wall balls + 5 double unders.

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterBrad D

Today should have been a rest day but I'm not able to make it in tomorrow. Went a little lighter on the front squats because everything felt heavy and my knees were caving in.
115x5 (~72%)
125x3 (~77%)
135x1 (85%)

WOD Rx'd
Fastest: 56s
Slowest: 1:01

Box jumps slowed me down. Jumped up, stepped down. Need to test bounding.

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterKLove

6:30pm class tonight with Whit doing Monday's work.

Hang Cleans
113x3, 123x2, 133, 143, 153, 163, 173, 183
-my best clean ever is 185 which I hit in a complex at Hail to the Queen last year. Haven't come close since but today felt good. 183 didn't look as clean as 173 did but still happy to have finally hit this again!

10min AMRAP: 25 wallballs, 50 du's
5 Rounds even.
-Everything unbroken except the very last du's when I tripped up 2x and then had to break once because I couldn't breathe. Really wanted to get back to the wall but just couldn't push anymore.
-My goal was to see if I could go unbroken and I planned about :15 rest after each movement. This seemed to work for me.

Did a little handstand kickup/walking practice then...

Assault Bike with the hubby:
40 rounds total of :30 on/ :10 off
-We alternated during the rest so we each did 20 rounds. Hit a total of 334 calories and I averaged around 65rpm. That wasn't fun. I'm tired now.

Thanks Steve for clarifying the Girl Scout cookie debate!

And yay Frank!!!

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered Commenterlady fox

I made it to the gym two days in a row!!

Yesterday. Hang cleans: worked up to 123# and failed twice - couldn't stand it up. Hit 118# though! WOD: let's just say AMRAPs are not ideal for undisciplined people like me ;) 2 rounds + 25 walls.

Today. FSQ: 93x5, 103x3, 113x1, 103x3, 93x5. Happy to have the opportunity to work on these today (see above). WOD: 53# and 20'' step-ups. Didn't track times.

March 15, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterKMo

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