Posted by michael stanwyck : Thursday, Jun 21, 2012
I ran into a friend of mine not too long ago, after having not seen her in a while, and we decided that it was time to get together, have coffee and catch up. She was right in the middle of something and asked me if I would grab her phone and put our "appointment" in her calendar. She said "put it in the 'legacy' calendar." I had no idea what she was talking about. I have calendars like "work," "personal," "teaching," and "meetings." I asked her what "legacy" meant and she told me that she categorized things that she did into something she called "domains."
What does that mean? Everything that she does is important with respect to something that she has declared her life is about, and each of those somethings is a domain. "Legacy" is the things that she does that will have an impact in the world after she is gone. "What if you just have an appointment?" I asked. "I don't just have appointments," she told me. "Why would I JUST have an appointment?"
And it occurred to me, why would I do that? Why would I spend my time JUST doing something, not declaring what it means or creates in my life. It's not like I'm not going to do things that would seem to others like "just a appointment," but it is really up to me to declare just how that "appointment" is going to shape the world I am intent on creating. Recently I have been sorting out my own domains. What do I say my life about? What am I up to? What's important to me? What do I want to leave behind?
I've created a few domains for myself that I am playing with -- community, contribution, creation, completion, and health & well being, creating everything that I do as existing in one of those domains. What it does for me is create an empowering context inside of which to take actions. If every action I take is building something -- community, something for others, something that wasn't there before, or something for my physical and mental health -- my context shifts. I'm not just planning a party, I'm strengthening my community. I'm never just meeting a client, I'm seeing what's needed and hopefully putting something in that makes a difference. I'm not simply working on a project, I'm adding something to the world that wasn't there before. I'm not just working out or going to the doctor, I'm ensuring that I'm here as long as possible for the people that matter to me. Everything is inside of a commitment
Is it really worth just doing something? What if your whole life was full of actions that created the world exactly the way you wanted it to be rather than "dealing" with the world the way that it was?
Today's Workout (No CAP)
10 Box Jumps (24/20)
...and coming Friday (CAP)
As Many Reps As Possible in 4 minutes at each station
30 seconds to rotate between stations
10 Wall Ball (20/14)
10 Sit ups
10 Push ups
10 Arch rocks
5 Pull ups
10 Lateral box jumps (20”)
10 Mountain climbers (2 ct)
10 DB Hang power cleans (40/25)
10 KB swings (24/16)
10 Double unders/30 singles
Posted by Becca Borawski : Wednesday, Jun 20, 2012
It's interesting how you don't necessarily realize how stressed you are, or how stressed you have been, until it dies down a little bit. The last couple weeks have been what I consider to be a live enactment of the Chinese curse, "May you live in interesting times." It has indeed been very interesting, and while I won't go into details, it has been quite a challenge on a multitude of levels. Despite being confident throughout it all that "it will all be alright," it has been stressful. And it was not until the precarious nature of things lightened up the tiniest bit this past weekend that both Winslow and I realized just how stressed we've been. I realized my body was hurting in a lot of ways - injuries were cropping up that hadn't bothered me in ages, little cuts weren't healing, I seem to have developed allergies, my digestive system was cranky, and my migraines reared their ugly head. I finally put it altogether...and also managed to finally get a little sleep.
This week, despite the continuing stress I am more aware of it and making conscious choices to care for myself. Remembering to workout, remembering my supplements, and being mindful of finding a few moments of nothingness. I am headed to the gym in a few moments and I will train moderately, around the aches and pains, and I will be grateful for the "moving meditation" that my workout will be for my mind and body. While it may be our body's protective mechanism to keep us NOT present to the stress, we need to have some awareness of it before we grind ourselves into the ground. It is useful to take inventory when the little things in your body add up and ask yourself, "What is at the root of this?"
The truth is, life is exceptionally good at the heart of things and in another few weeks it will all settle down. I am fully committed to caring for myself in the meantime, and I am ready for things to be a little less...interesting.
Wednesday's Workout (NO CAP)
As many round as possible in 13 minutes:
2, 4, 6, 8...
Kettlebell SDLHP (24/16)
...and coming Thursday (NO CAP)
5-5-5-5 (heavy work sets)
As many rounds as possible in 8 minutes:
10 Box Jumps (24/20)
Posted by Andy Petranek : Wednesday, Jun 20, 2012
ATHLETE PROFILE: Rachel Mattila
Hometown: way up north in Ferndale, Washington
Occupation: actress in the upcoming film "Gimme Shelter." Who wants to put me in another movie?
When did you first start CrossFitting?: May 2010
When did you first start training at CFLA?: May 2010
Favorite WOD: Helen. Push-ups, kettle bells, running oh yes please!
Least Favorite WOD: Karen, wall balls are the death of me
Tell us about you sports & fitness background: I knew at a very young age that I was going to be a movie star. I loved (and still do love) acting! I was the actress in the family, always putting on shows, writing plays and letting my imagination run wild. So sports always came 2nd for me. My sisters were sports all-stars. While I was on the varsity soccer, cheer and track team, I was never the star athlete. No matter how hard I would push myself I was always 2nd string. I took on figure skating for a big chunk of my life because I wanted a sport that was mine. It was the first sport where I was actually really good but had to quit because it got too expensive. I moved to Seattle to pursue my acting career further but I got sucked into playing soccer at a junior college, and I quit a year later because my heart wasn't into it (my heart is into acting.) From there I took on a full and half marathons. I never went to the gym because I hated working out indoors. Growing up in the Pacific Northwest, the outdoors is your gym.
How did you first get exposed to CrossFit? Take us back to your first WOD... what was it, and how did it feel? Few years ago I wanted to even further my acting career so I packed my car and moved to LA. I quickly discovered that the outdoors wasn't my gym anymore and I got a membership to LA Fitness and got a trainer. My trainer was great, but he got me on a get quick skinny diet and worked me out to look "Hollywood skinny." Which works for some people, but after awhile I got tired of it. A friend of mine told me to find a CrossFit gym, so I did. I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I was completely humbled and dead after my first WOD. I remember kettle bells being involved but its a blur- not enough oxygen was going to my brain after that WOD... I thought I was fit going into it, but boy was I wrong. Skinny does not mean fit. And I was hooked after that WOD, I was back the next day and haven't stopped since.
What sort of changes have you seen in your body, health and fitness since starting CF (before/after)? "When I first started CrossFit it was quickly discovered that I was not fit at all. I was skinny and weak but determined to change that. I am the strongest I have ever been in my life. I have muscles! I am now rx-ing the majority of my work outs, and I used to struggle picking up the lightest kettle bell. I may not be the best, but damnit I try my hardest and best at each WOD. I don't want to just be strong for a girl, I want to be f***ing strong (and the next tomb raider actress!)
I try to eat paleo the majority of the time, but I love vino and pie. "
What sort of changes in your life have you experienced out of taking on something like CrossFit that were totally unexpected? I have gained a mental toughness that I never had before. Because of never being the best at sports, I used to settle with my WODs. One day coach Kenny told me to bring out my inner animal (which is a cougar) and completely dominate my work outs. From being a deer in head lights to a cougar was quite the transformation. I allowed myself to mentally realize that I can accomplish & conquer my WODs and whatever else in life seems like a mountain to me.
Please share with us any favorite CrossFit / CFLA moments: I was on location in New Jersey for a film and I was at CrossFit Ignite and the coach there would not let me go back to LA still doing banded pull ups. He told me to get rid of the band. Scared as I was, I let go of my "security" band and proceed to do the rest of my pull ups on my own!
I have lots of favorite moments at CFLA: Saturdays during the open doing the cupid shuffle, Murph, being number 1 on the board for double unders!!
CFLA is not just any CrossFit gym, we are a family and with that we enjoy life together and make some pretty amazing memories.
Any advice for people just getting started? Always show up and don't quit. I think of that Nike quote "I really regretted that work out, no one ever." Keep coming. No one said it was going to be easy. There are times during WODs when I want to quit and just lay down but I don't. We are not quitters, we are conquerers who strive to be the best we can be!
What are your hobbies, interests and/or talents outside of CrossFit? Acting, I think I have already made that pretty clear. I love to act. It's what I've done my whole life and it's who I am. It's what I've been called to do. I love the outdoors, I wish I could fly up North every weekend and play in the woods and see my family. I enjoy watching soccer, going to hot yoga, the beach, eating a good steak and I love my husband!
Tuesday's Workout (NO CAP)
Five rounds for time of:
12 kettlebell swings (32/20)
6 bar muscle ups
... and coming Wednesday (NO CAP)
Complete as many rounds as possible in 13 minutes of
2, 4, 6, 8...
kb sumo deadlift high pull (24/16)
Posted by Andy Petranek : Tuesday, Jun 19, 2012
Funny thing about unplugging from Facebook and Twitter... suddenly now I have time to read many of the things that I haven't had time for. One of those things that I never seem to find the time to do is reading other interesting peoples' blogs.
I was reading Stephen Pressfield's yesterday, and came across his post called The Lunch Pail Manifesto. The title comes from the cover art of his book that just came out called Turning Pro, but it was the points of the manifesto that intrigued me the most. He was writing about being a professional writer... but as I read the manifesto, each topic, point-by-point, seemed to me to apply directly to the type of fitness training (life training) that we do at CrossFit LA.
Here is the manifesto. Try substituting the word "training" in for "work". Let me know what you think.
The Lunch Pail Manifesto by Stephen Pressfield
1. We must find the work that brings our lives meaning.
2. We must strive to make our work purposeful, truthful, and authentic, a pure offering to our Muse and fellow human beings.
3. We must wage a lifelong war with Resistance and accept that instant gratification is an oxymoron.
4. We must not speak of our work with false modesty or braggadocio.
5. We must not debase our work for short term gain nor elevate it above its rightful station to inflate our ego.
6. We must not covet the fruits of our work, or the fruits of others’ work.
7. We must respect others’ work and offer aid to fellow professional laborers.
8. We must accept that our work will never be perfect.
9. We must accept that our work will never be without merit.
10. We must accept that our work will never cease.
Squat Clean and Jerk - 5 x 5 (185/125)
- start each set of five at the 2:30 mark on the timer
- in the fifth round at the 11:30 mark and after completing your five clean & jerks...
Run 1 mile for time
...and coming Tuesday
Five rounds for time of:
12 kettlebell swings (32/20)
6 bar muscle ups
Posted by Andy Petranek : Saturday, Jun 16, 2012
If there is one thing that I have learned after CrossFitting for 8 years, it's that taking myself, my life, and my workouts too seriously is usually a big mistake. Go ahead... I give you permission... lighten up. Loosen your belt. Relax the purse strings. Take part of this weekend to do something that you've always wanted to do. And when you're taking a class at CFLA, remember also to lighten up. Check in with your face... does the expression on it make you look like you actually want to be there? Smile. Make eye contact with someone you don't know - and share a little piece of yourself with them. Make a new friend. Don't worry so much about what you're supposed to get from the workout... it will deliver, as will your life, whether you worry about it or not.
Um... really, Zach?!
Friday's Workout (NO CAP)
In 20 minutes, complete:
a) 50 GHD extensions
b) following, complete as many rounds as possible of:
5 Deadhang Pull-ups
10 Jumping Lunges
15 Hollow Rocks
At the end of the 20 minutes, complete 50 push ups for time.
...and coming Monday (CAP)
5x5 Squat Clean and Jerk (185/125)
Each set of 5 starts on the 2:30 mark
1 mile run for time
Starting at 11:30
Posted by michael stanwyck : Thursday, Jun 14, 2012
Recently I made some changes in my training (some of you may remember this post) and I had a lightbulb moment around the changes a couple of days ago. I was coaching a deadlift workout, and as I was watching people bang out some pretty heavy lifts I started to get really excited about the idea of being strong. Being strong is a really good feeling!
I started thinking about my workouts and realized that because I said I was going to do more running, outdoor and gymnastic stuff, I had been resisting including weights in my programming. Like ACTIVELY saying "no" to including them in my workouts. Which is funny because all I really said was that I wanted to have FUN!
I started thinking about why strength training might not have occurred like fun. And then it hit me -- I had been creating lifting programming for myself from the idea that I wasn't strong enough! I was DOING the lifting to FIX a "problem" I thought I had. I was making it a REQUIREMENT every week that I cycle through some heavy lifts to make sure that I was increasing my strength numbers, when all along I actually was strong enough! Strong enough for what? Well, certainly for anything that I might need to do in my life! Because I was operating with "not strong enough" in the background, my strength training had an air of obligation to it. You know, you can kinda smell it but you don't really know what it is.
The truth is I LOVE lifting heavy stuff. It feels good! So now I'm doing it, not because I'm trying to make linear progress, but because I love being strong. I wanna be strong! I love my programming now, I'm doing the gymnastics stuff I talked about and I'm getting outside and running and sprinting more. Now I'm throwing in some creative lifting workouts that don't have anything to do with linear gains, but just doing the kind of thing I love -- picking up heavy things!
It's kind of fun putting all the pieces together. It doesn't happen all at once. Shift things around, bring things in, push things out, bring some of the pushed out things back and streamline it all so there's nothing extra. Everything there is something that I want there, and there's nothing in there that doesn't make a difference in what I'm up to.
Today's Workout (CAP)
Turkish Get Ups - 1-1-1
Deadlift - 1-1-1
As Many Rounds As Possible in 5 minutes of:
10 Bodyweight Good Mornings
...and coming Friday (No CAP)
You will have 20 minutes to complete:
50 GHD extensions
Then, perform As Many Rounds As Possible in the remaining time of:
5 Deadhang Pull-ups
10 Jumping Lunges
15 Hollow Rocks
Immediately following AMRAP, complete 50 push ups for time.