Breakin’ it on down!

CrossFit Oakdale finished 52rd among teams in Northern California.  I am extremely proud of this accomplishment.  We do not have a professional exerciser among us – we have a gym of regular people that work hard, work smart and work on their weaknesses.  We don’t have any weightlifting specialists, former D1 athletes or any such craziness.  What we do have is a bunch of good people that hung in there through the most challenging Open WODs we have seen.  Not only did we, as a gym finish 52, on the first page of the NorCal Leaderboard, but we got better as the WODs went on.  After 15.3, as the Leaderboard was really coming together, we were hanging around in the 60s.  After 15.4, a WOD that hurt a lot of gyms, we had our best showing, finishing in 38th place in NorCal.    After 15.4, we were sitting in 57, and I really was hoping we could finish on that first page.

After 15.5, probably the most painful OPEN WOD I can ever remember, we moved up 5 PLACES!  And we don’t row.  Ever.  We have 3 rowers, so we rarely use them in WODs.  Just off experience and practice on the rower, we should have been behind the eight ball.  BUT…we work hard every day, and are well accustomed to going to the “pain cave” or the “dark place” or whatever you want to call it.

So even with little rower experience, we still made a big jump.  I think the most fun part of the Open for me was watching athletes get off that rower for that last set of 9 thrusters and CFO athletes cheer them on to 9 thrusters to the finish.  Some went UB, some didn’t, but it was a great fight to be a part of and watch.

First, I would want to take the time to recognize our coaches.  Chance, Chris, Christine, Denny, Louis, Micayla, Sarah, Thomas and Tricia all played a huge part in getting our athletes ready,  They are motivated, care, have great ideas on how to make fitness fun and a just generally great people.  THANK YOU for all you do.

Most importantly, THANK YOU for being a part of CFO, and all your hard work.  It takes courage to walk through the doors of a weird warehouse, with people with their shirts off and headbands on, grunting and slapping hands.  Once you get in the mix, and start pushing, it’s like you are part of the team, moving the whole thing forward through effort and energy. 


Workout of the Day

15 Power Cleans

15 Front Squats

15 Shoulder to Overhead

30 Toes to Bar

15 Shoulder to Overhead

15 Front Squats

15 Power Cleans

Men – 135, Ladies – 95

This WOD is shamelessly stolen from Barbarian S&C.  Thanks Johnny!

Our plan amounts to Squat

One thought on programming for the next year – we will likely always Squat heavy once a week.  This means either a Front Squat or a Back Squat Progression year round.  We will mix up the rep schemes through different cycles and progressions, but expect to squat heavy once a week from now until the Zombie Apocalypse.  Overhead Squats should be a staple, so expect to see them regularly, but they require a little less raw stregnth.  We will hit them up differently – more like practice.  Wallballs and thrusters – you just gotta do em – heavy, light, high rep, low rep, whatever.  Mid-line stabilize like a mother grabber, but strong legs will ALWAYS be a priority.  Sore legs are the staple of a CrossFitter.  Sore legs are the new hand tears.

I noticed something last week – 15.5 didn’t have Burpees.  In preparation for a Burpee-palooza, I programmed the -ish out of them in the Open, but pulled them in week 5.  I figured that we would get a healthy dose in 15.5, but it never came.  Well, damn, son!  Let’s make up for it.  

Workout of the Day

How do you do 15.5 in 5:19?  Have really strong legs – but you need an engine that could haul a fire truck.


Back Squat, 5 Rep work, Week 6 of 8

Take 20 minutes to build to a heavy set of 5.  If possible, add 5-10# to last weeks lift.




Kettlebell Swing 53/35*

20 minute cap

If possible, and based on KB availability, you may go heavier.  Guys, you can swing the Pink Lady, although if you have to break it up, you should stick with the Blue.  Ladies, Green or Blue may be a decent challenge if you are up for it.

Open over? Lift Heavy? Sure. But always more fitness

The Open is over!  If you competed and tried your best, congratulations!  If you helped in any capacity, judged, cheered on an athlete, tried one of the WODs, or participated in any way, great job!  We hope you play next year!

I will do more analysis of the Open over the coming week when all the scores are in. But I will say this – this was the hardest Open ever.  Skill wise, and to a certain degree, weight wise, it was the most challenging.  I do feel like we were prepared in every way – except for rowing for calories.  But that ain’t that hard and now we have 4 rowers – and they all work.  Kind of – don’t ask Denny or Tricia about wonky rowers on 15.5.  It just ain’t funny.

Stand by for more rowing WODs.

I am convinced the Open will continue to get more demanding – and I want us to be prepared – more fit than ever.  That means getting stronger, lifting heavy, working on skills, but most of all training hard with each other and having fun.


Workout of the Day

Clean and Jerk

Max Effort – take the time to warm up, and if it feels good, go for a PR.


Run TL Davis for time

The Open and the EWLB Challenge are in the books for 2015

Another group of well behaved individuals have completed the Eat Well Live Better Paleo Challenge. Congratulations to Gloria, Robin, Nicole, Mike, Rocky, Kirk, Rita, and Dorian for completing 30 days of unprocessed foods, quality sleep, increased water intake and Pure Pharma  (Fish Oil, Magnesium, and Vitamin D). They logged their days into a google document, supported each other on Facebook and share their recipes daily. In the end, our winners are:

Most points earned: Robin 

Most overall inched lost: Nicole 7″

Most weight Loss: Dorian 7.8% of her body weight (12.2#)

Most Improved Baseline: Gloria 

Overall Physical Change: Rocky

Winner will get a choice of $25 Lululemon gift card or $25 Rogue Fitness Gift Card. 

If you haven’t seen it, there is a Eat Well Live Better Challengers page on Facebook. If you look at posts to page you can see how AWESOME these people were for each other during the last 30 days. Make sure you give them a high five when you see them around the gym

Steph M. during 15.5

Steph M. during 15.5

Workout of the Day


Press Complex- Week 5

2 Shoulder Press, 1 Push Press with a 3 second hold

Build to a heavy in 15 minutes



7 Pullups

11 Box Jump Overs 24/20

7 DB Push Press Left Arm 45/35

7 DB Push Press Right Arm45/35

15 min Time Cap

Finish Strong!

15.5, the final WOD of the 2015 CrossFit Games Open is upon us.  Come in on Saturday, work very hard, bring a dish, and we’ll have a pot luck lunch.  June was gracious enough to loan her rower, so we will be able to run 5 per heat.

We’ll do a warm up at 9am and start heats at 9:30.  There are a few good tips floating around the internet, but here is what I think.

- This is the first, and only WOD that is mainly lactic, meaning your pace will be dictated by the acid in your blood and not the endurance in your muscles.  I imagine this one might hurt a little bit ;)

- Because of this, since we are doing it in the morning, I would recommend eating a light breakfast.  Nothing too heavy, make sure you get some good carbs.

- Be hydrated, but not overly so.

- Stretch and warm up, but you will want to really open your lungs 5-10 minutes before you start.  I will have a good plan for this tomorrow, but you do not want the first time you feel out of breath to be after you transition to the thrusters.

- Wear weightlifting shoes if you have them.  This will help on both the row and thrusters.

- You do not need to strap in.  In fact, you probably shouldn’t.  We recommend a hard pull back, and a slow return to catch your breath, somewhere between 20-25 stokes per minute.  You won’t need the straps if you do this.

- For guys, the gold standard is 1 calorie per pull.  For girls, it seems to be 2 for 1, but every once and a while, you catch 1 for 1.  Just find your cal per hour pace, and be smart.

- I don’t know this yet, but I think the row is gonna fall off.  You may feel like you are surviving.

- Ah, thrusters.  I just watched some folks blow up on the set of 21 after strong sets of 27.  Unless you are a thruster beast, you may want to really have a plan for smart breaks.  Like 11-9-7.  Once you get off the rower for the set of 21 thrusters, it gets pretty hazy.  Choose the wrench. Be ready to chew through concrete.

Workout of the Day



Row for Calories

Thruster 95/65


I will have more to say about this in the future…BUT every workout so far has required muscular endurance and some level of skill. 15.5 has almost none of that and all guts. Good Luck. God Bless.


Workout of the Day


27-21-15-9 reps for time of:
Row (calories)

Men use 95 lb.
Women use 65 lb.

Creativity is coming.

15.5 is announced Thursday night.  Our Thursday WODs have been predictable – after the Open, we’ll get some creativity back on Thursdays.  Promise.


Workout of the Day


Parking Lot Run

15 Pullups (or 5 Muscle Ups)

Parking Lot Run

10 Overhead Squats 115/75

End of the Open Potluck

Saturday we will be celebrating the end of the Open post 15.5. If you are cuckoo bananas you can still complete this on Sunday during Open Gym and Monday morning. There is a sign up sheet on the message board as you walk in to the gym. Please sign up for something to bring, and of course your favorite drink. If you are bringing kids, please bring drinks for them too:)

There is an event on Facebook – please mark if you are attending that way we can have a slight headcount. 



Workout of the Day


Press Complex, Week 4

2 Shoulder Press, 1 Push Press with a 3 second hold at the top.

Take 15 minutes to build to a heavy set.  If you did 15.4, use that same push – or extension – as you did at the top of the HSPU.


Against a 12 minute running clock

At the top of every 4 minutes

10 Clean and Jerks 185/115

Rest the remainder of the 4 minutes

10 Clean and Jerks, 165/105

Rest the remainder of the 4 minutes

10 Clean and Jerks, 135/95

Record your time for each set

A Little Headspace

Denny introduced me to this meditation app, Headspace.  It’s 10 minutes  a day of meditation.  I will be the first to admit, I never tried anything like meditation before.  Headpsace can do for meditation what CrossFit did for elite fitness – change the perception for the masses.  The app allows you to sign up for 10 free sessions.  Check it out.

I can’t figure out how to update my player, but I had a sweet video from Headspace…check out the site.

A CFO repeat – from the mind of Coach Louis

Workout of the Day


OTM for 12

Even 6/3 Dips (Rings are ok to use)

Odd 6 Pullups (Strict if possible)



12 Toes to Bar

24 Walking Lunges

48 Doubleunders

Sub for DU is 10 attempts and 8 Burpees

Ready for the Week

Small change to the strength plan this week – we’ve moved the Press Complex to Wednesday.  We will have conditioning WODs on Tuesday and Thursday (with a Pullup/Dip strength session on Tuesday).  The last WOD of the Open, 15.5, will be Friday and Saturday – there appears to be Thrusters, Burpees and Box Jumps left.  Could they somehow add those three into one movement? Do a burpee onto a bar, jump the bar onto the box and do a Thruster on top of the box?  Does this sound safe?  Did I just create something?

Second, let me commend you for being stoic in the face of the new HSPU standard.  If you did any social media surfing, the HSPU standard was reacted to like a turd in a punch bowl.  I have always adhered to the “Doomsday Principle” made popular by the Outlaw Way, but it’s pretty simple.  Basically, when it comes to CrossFit movements, the most strict or difficult version is the default.  All this means full extension on everything at all times, full lock out at all times, and constantly adhering to these standards.  Yes, we saw some (maybe a lot) of no reps on the HSPU over the weekend.  But there was no whining, no complaints, just fighting to meet the standard.  Now that we understand this new standard, we will work to meet it.  I have been around CrossFit for a bit – I was there when they dropped Chest to Bar pull-ups on us, extended the rings beyond our reach for Muscle Ups, and made us touch a target for burpees.  It ain’t going to get easier folks.  And you wouldn’t want it to. 


Workout of the Day


Back Squat, 5RM Work, Week 5

Take 20 minutes to build to a heavy set of 5.  If possible, add 5-10# to last week’s total.


OTM for 16

Even 12 Box Jumps 24/20

Odd 30 seconds of Thrusters 95/65

Rest for 30 after each set of Thrusters.  If you finish the Box Jumps early, you get to rest there, too.  Score is total number of Thrusters completed.