Athlete Spotlights

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Watch Rick’s Episode of The Personal Record: The Personal Record: Rick Mathiesen

The Science Behind Change

Rick Mathieson showed up at a CrossFit 310 6am class, two years ago. He was a workout guy,
who hadn’t been working out. He’d spent years in the gym during his football days. Now, he was
a chemistry teacher by day, and a fearsome high school football coach by 4pm. Coach Tiff (Rick’s girlfriend for any Newbies reading this) put it this way: “He ate a lot ‘For Time’ and did AMRAPs of television watching, while giving me a hard time about lifting, and how I was going to get bulky.”

Change is a fascinating thing, but profound change is mysterious and elusive. Physical change
is amazing to watch. Ice to water and water to vapor, these are drastic physical transformations.
Skinny to Muscular and Fat to Thin are equally impressive transformations that we work with at
310. As impressive as it is to see something like that happen, as much as we celebrate these
things, there’s an even more mysterious occurrence.

The New Thing

A chemical change occurs when a substance’s composition is changed. When bonds are
broken and new ones are formed, a new thing is the result. It’s a more rare occurrence, but
sometimes we get to see it at 310, and I think Rick is one of the examples. Physical change was
what he initially signed up for. He was a Triathlete aching for competition, and looking for an
opportunity to push himself, years after his exit from team sports. But as I watched the long,
patient process of Rick the Athlete, to Rick the Leader, to Rick the Coach, to Rick the
Programmer, I saw the makings of change on a deeper level. I watched old bonds crumble and
new bonds form under the force and speed of new friendships and the pressure of competition
in classes; and I watched Rick thrive as he became the new thing.

While we are very intentional about setting the stage for the most profound kinds of change at
CrossFit 310, I am not taking credit for what’s happened with Rick over the years. Yes, we were
an element inside of the cosmic cocktail that combusted, but so were his parents, his high
school football coaches, Tiffany…you get it. I’m just thankful for the football player that got
dragged in by his girlfriend, but couldn’t shut off his quarterback brain or shed his chemistry
teacher badge. On Tuesday, when your lungs feel like bags of hot embers, and your glutes are
numb from reps, thank Rick who lovingly has taken it upon himself to build you into a
superhuman.

Rick, thanks for your support. Thanks for your investment into our people. Thanks for being a
Watchman.

This stuff is fun.

—Koach

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?

Anything short with a heavy barbell

2. What’s on your Suck List?

Anything body weight, especially mother lovin HSPU’s!

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)

I eat alot of food. i am a huge fan of most of the products by Hostesses

4. How did you hear about CrossFit 310?

My girlfriend, Coach Tiff dragged me in.

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?

Just over 2 years now

6. Describe your biggest milestone, achievement, or “A-ha” moment?

When I hurt my back on my VERY first day, I discovered a pre existing issue and have been able to use Crossfit as a way to repair my body

7. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?

Just come in and have fun, dont worry about what everyone else is doing, make this your own journey

Eddie Davis

 

Early in my introduction to Eddie Davis, I can remember putting my hand on his giant cannonball shoulder and internally being impressed with the amount of mass this guy was carrying around. At  the same time I’m experiencing this incredible presence he gives off, I am being told that he is recovering from cancer. He is soft spoken, wears a beanie because his massive frame tends to get  cold to the bone even in southern CA weather, and he takes everything very slow at first. When I meet his daughter Alex, she says “He’s just so small right now,” and that’s when my brain starts  spinning. Over the course of two years, I watch Eddie slowly build himself back. At first it’s incongruent to watch this hulk push around very little weight. But slowly the weight increases, his mobility increases, his technique is honed and energy returns; the beanie is gone. All along my  geek brain is writing this comic book story about Eddie certainly being from another planet. When  he suddenly benches over 300lbs one day, it confirms it: He must have done battle somewhere in  another realm, vanquishing some ungodly evil, and then come to earth to recover… Wow, that’s just  too much, shut your brain off Kris! Then I watch him deadlift 430lbs and squat 375, and it doesn’t  look that hard; it’s like the movie “Unbreakable” with Bruce Willis, he just keeps putting more weight on. I am convinced Eddie has a Clark Kent cover story going on.
From another planet or not, I can tell you that I have enjoyed watching the growth of Eddie as a born athlete almost as much as anything I’ve seen at CrossFit 310. I couldn’t be more proud of  who Eddie is in our place. I am so thankful for his leadership, his camaraderie, and his  persistence.

There are a few people at 310 who know Eddie very well. They know him in and out of the box. Coach Tiff has spent innumerable hours coaching with Eddie, and she writes this:

“Eddie is my mentor, an inspiration and an unlikely role model for a ton of young ladies. Despite all odds he is in our place, banging around with his barely mobile elbow, getting stronger and able to run 800’s without stopping. When Eddie started here we had just started coaching together and he was just about a year clear of battling back from stage 4 cancer. He’s inspired me to work hard, keep learning and to love what I do, it’s a gift he has. He is a role model for hundreds, maybe  thousands of young ladies throughout the South Bay and the country because he teaches them to be  young, responsible ladies instead of just athletes. It’s a trait he brings to our place as well and  I think we are lucky to have his energy and his spirit here at 310!”

Virginia Sylvestri has two daughters who were coached by Eddie, and she writes:
“When I think of Eddie these are the words that come to mind: dedicated, commitment, inspirational,  role model, leader, caring, love of family, respectful, knowledgeable, earns respect…Eddie is  someone that once you are his friend you become a special part of his inner circle. And he then holds a special place in your heart as he does with me and our entire family!!”

Eddie, thank you for everything you put into CrossFit 310. We love you.
—Koach

1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?

  • Fran

2.  What’s on your Suck List?

  • Double Unders

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)

  • Primal

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?

  • Tiffany and Ricky

5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?

  • 2 years

6.  Describe your biggest milestone, achievement, or “A-ha” moment?

  • Tackling Cancer

7.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?

  • Always stay mentally strong and never quit fighting!

 

Read this Athlete Spotlight and more in our August 2014 Newsletter here

 

Tawni Germain

This is an impossible task. I don’t want to make this about me, but seriously how can I sum up the core of my wife, in less than a page? Let’s all just agree that this cannot be the final cut, but simply a trailer, for the epic, sweeping story, coming to a theater near you…

The Queen Mother of Adventure…
“Tawni is always up for an Adventure or Challenge, and when it goes bad, she
finds a way to turn it into the trip of a lifetime.” -Christina Eoff

Adventurous is the most common adjective I keep hearing people use to describe my wife. As I take stock of our life together, plus the aggregate of anecdotes I’ve collected from the Pre-Kris era, I can assure you this summation is appropriate. In life, her sense of adventure manifests itself in massive, coordinated trips to Yosemite with friends, fearless treks to visit family everywhere, and the constant pursuit of experience for our kids. In CrossFit, it’s her fierce, feminist heart that says, “I’ve got 3 kids and less time than most to get to the box, but I’m going after Sean O’Rourke and Tiff Johnson in the Open”. These are things that don’t cross most of our minds. “Stay at Home Mom” does not mean June Cleaver to this woman, more like Ellen Ripley from “Aliens”. Tawni stands poised and ready to deal with whatever obstacles are in front of her.
Champion of Laughter…
Tawni’s agenda is always laughter and fun. This general predisposition is the thing I admire most about her, because it permeates difficult situations where the rest of us might be tempted to brood and complain. It is a form of leadership that may be akin to a Super Power because of its rarity. If you’re close to Tawni, you’ve probably got a story or two about her ability to accept a circumstance and flip the situation; Lemons to Lemonade if you will. While putting this spotlight together, I reached out to a few people to help me fill out this picture of Tawni— to color a little beyond my own perspective. The notes I got back were validating, and the harmony of sentiment was inspiring. When asked to give a couple thoughts on Tawni, Coach Kei wrote, “It’s easy to admire what Tawni is capable of physically, as one of the strongest girls at 310. But what I admire most about her is her attitude: she’s competitive in the most supportive way, bringing out the best in others. She always cheers for everyone around her, even while she’s in the darkest moment of the WOD… I wish I could WOD with her more, maybe some of that would rub off on me!” And finally, long-time friend and former member of CrossFit 310, Grace Lines caps the conversation this way, “Three words come to mind when I think about Tawni and CrossFit: Strength, Determination, and Fun. No matter what the work or WOD is, she is going to do it without complaint, and she will do it well. But what I appreciate the most about Tawni is her attitude towards CrossFit. She genuinely enjoys every challenge, every tortuous minute; it’s actually infectious. I always know if I’m WODing with Tawni, I’m going to have someone cheering me on. She is one of the main reasons I love CrossFit. ”

The ability to push and willingness to suffer make Tawni an athlete to be reckoned with. Her love for CrossFit, her support, encouragement and heart for the underdog makes her invaluable.

I Love you Tawni. Thank you for the trip of a Lifetime.
—Kris

1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?
I really do love everything.  I have to say that body weight movements like pushups and pullups aren’t on the top of my list because they are harder for me, but I still like to do them because I know I need to do the hard stuff too (and I can see how far I have come).

2.  What’s on your Suck List?
Everything.  I have yet to even come close to conquering anything, so everything is always a work in progress.  Even when I think I am getting close to feeling good about something, a coach points out things I can work on inside of that movement which is great.  I want to move correctly and efficiently, so that I can eventually lift more, run faster, play more, and not have any injuries.

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
Better than it was 3 years ago:)  I do focus on meat and vegetables for my meals, but I do tend to snack when I am stressed with the kids or destressing from the day.

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?
I own it:) but let me just take a minute to let you know how much I love this place and everyone in it.  It is so fun to celebrate the big and little things people are doing in here.  I love watching people cheering each other on after they are done.  I love to see friendships form.  I love to see people doing things they did not think they could do.  I love to watch the growth in every athlete.  I love to see people facing their fears.  I love to see people crushing wods just as much as I love to see someone go up into a handstand for the first time.  This stuff is fun. This stuff is playful.  This is the stuff I love.  Thank you for making this place the thing it is, the thing that I love.  I love you people.

5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?
Since the beginning…..4 and 1/2 years ago.  Although just in the past year I was actually consistent, which made the world of difference.

6.  Describe your biggest milestone, achievement, or “A-ha” moment?
-After going through 3 pregnancies and struggling with losing the weight, I was so stoked to get my first strict pullup (weighing 197lbs).  This encouraged me that I was strong enough to do other things and I did not have to lose 50lbs to get to play around.  So much fun.
-Knowing I could make it into the gym with 3 kids, a busy life, and full days.  This was not something I though I could ever do consistently.

7.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
-I think consistency is just so key.  When you are touching on things regularly they become easier and your muscle memory gets better.  It changed everything when I started prioritizing working out, getting consistent, and touching movements frequently.
–Do not be afraid to fail.  I bet about 50% of our gym has not failed a lift.  They have not got to a place of super uncomfortable.  Do not be ok with just easy if you want to go to the next step.
–Find someone to chase or run away from.  Friendly competition is what makes us push harder.   Don’t let your partner put on more weight than you (as long as you can safely move that weight correctly), or run faster than you; as well as, encourage someone who is chasing you to try to catch you……help push each other.
–You don’t want to go long and hard all the time, if you want to stay in this sport for a long time without injury.  The 4 minute wods are just as important as the 20 minute wods, and the technique heavy days are just as important as the heavy cardio days.
–Work on correct movement and mobility.
–Have fun and play, play, play.

Read this athlete spotlight and more in our July 2014 Newsletter here

Shaun Morey

A Lawyer Walks into a CrossFit My first impressions of Shaun Morey at CrossFit 310 are a little deceiving. I remember his easy going demeanor, a generous spirit and a distinct humility. While those things are all true, and still remain, there was something a little Columbo-esque about the unassuming, congenial Lawyer who lived around the corner. There was an edge to him that I couldn’t put my finger on.  Sure enough, the character that would unravel over time stands in stark contrast against that old two-dimensional character I thought I was reading. Like Doctor Jones teaching classes Monday through Friday, and then traipsing across the globe on the weekends with a .45 in one fist and his bullwhip in the other—I would discover the deeper layers of Shaun point to the crucial, defining center: Adventure.  The Fish Story If you did not know, Shaun is a published Author (http://www.shaunmorey.com), Big Game fisherman, and recovering hippie (just kidding Shaun). When you’re working out with him, you’re basically working out with Ernest Hemingway—without the misogyny. Adventure brought him to CrossFit 310 and it keeps him thriving there. There are few things that make me more proud as a coach and friend than to watch serious growth occur over time. In the course of two years, Shaun has consistently grown stronger and more capable. At 50 years old, he and I entertain many strategic conversations about patience and calculated moves towards more and more fun with greater feats still ahead.  We bide our time and dream big. My hope is to turn the final edition of his CrossFit 310 story into such an epic tale that someone would wonder if maybe we didn’t take some creative liberties when telling it. I want it to be a Big Fish Story. Do yourself a favor and grab a WOD or a conversation with Shaun. His energy is infectious and absolutely invaluable to me. If you’re having a hard time finding out what it looks like to have fun doing this stuff, find a class he’s in. Shaun, thanks for your love, loyalty and commitment to both CrossFit 310 and my Family. We love you. —Koach

 1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?
My favorite WODs are the wrecking balls: Restrpo, Murph, Filthy 50, etc.  Favorite skill is repeatedly failing to complete the Jeff Williams Barbell Warm-Up.  Someday!

2.  What’s on your Suck List?
Pistols because I can’t believe I can’t do them, and ring muscle-ups because I get close only to lose the golden ticket for months at a time.

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
My diet is pescatarian with an occasional In&Out Burger (protein style, grilled onions. and pickles). My favorite meal of the day is a breakfast smoothie loaded with everything and anything plus a healthy dose of raw cocoa nibs.

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?
My wife Amanda scoped it out, met Koach Kris, and we were hooked.

5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?
Two and half years.

6.  Describe your biggest milestone, achievement, or “A-ha” moment?
There have been many.  Stringing together 20 double unders after vowing to never attempt another was a great moment.  I now own my own rope.  And learning the importance of mobility and technique.  An injury in my first year due to bad form and poor mobility reset my focus.  Since then I have tried to roll out every day both before and after the WOD.  I pay more attention to form and try and be patient with my strength training.  

7.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
Be willing to embrace failure–it’s one of your greatest teachers. Ber kind to yourself and listen to the coaches. And remember that patience is a muscle too. Oh, and the WOD that leaves you panting in a pool of sweat will also leave you smiling with a new sense of accomplishment. See you at the box!

Read this athlete spotlight and MORE in our June 2014 newsletter here!

 

Kerry Geiger

This month’s Spotlight is a celebration of patience, commitment, and relationship. Kerry Geiger is a model of progress, although you might not know it. She is understated by definition and rarely draws attention to herself. She has a quiet entrance into class and then exits with the same amount of fanfare—a quiet goodbye with a muted wave :).
Kerry’s CrossFit story is integral to our identity at CrossFit 310. She is an archetype of a realistic athlete that we love to train with: the successful business owner, wife and mother. To say that Kerry is short on time is an understatement.  Her consistency looks different then say Sean O’Rourke. For this time in her life it’s impossible for her to give me more than a couple days a week. But we have a sweet unspoken agreement that makes it all worth it. Every time she’s in class, I will give her everything I have as a coach, and she is committed to the same as an athlete. A focus on form and strength and quality of movement, over the course of two to three years, yields benefits!  Incremental change over the course of a long time equals great change in the end, and Kerry is an awesome example! The changes we’ve seen in her squat, push-up, deadlift, run, box jump and bar-path are worthy of celebrating.  Her vulnerability and continual desire to learn keeps things exciting for us both.
My friendship with Kerry mirrors her CrossFit story. It grew patiently over the course of a thousand days and continues to excite me. I am so proud to train with Kerry and cannot wait for more. Thank you Kerry for saving my life with your computer ninja skills, and for your consistent support and quiet leadership in class.
Love you sis.
Koach

1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?
I like lifting weights in general – very quantifiable. I like most of the work – it’s ridiculously challenging for me, but not boring at all, scary, painful, arduous, fast, but never boring.

2.  What’s on your Suck List?
Seriously, most of what we do – I’ve been working on a pull up forever, but seems like things get less sucky all the time in small increments, and that’s my goal.

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
Starbucks. Don’t judge

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?
Heard about this newfangled workout online, and liked the idea of building strength. I came to the class at a time that I was mentally beat up – and Kris said “I’m not going to try to sell you on this, this is what we do…” the “test” workout was hard, breathtaking but engaging – and that’s exactly what I needed.
5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?
2.5-3  years?

6.  Describe your biggest milestone, achievement, or “A-ha” moment?
Showing up is what you give yourself. Life travels around us at chaotic speed, but just show up and see what you can do, revel in it. Oh and also a handstand, never did one my whole life till this year.

7.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?

310ers are positive, supportive, energizing and friendly – and you can get a hell of a workout (or training as Kris makes us say). I’m not sure if it’s the work, the coaches, the place, the time slot, or a confluence of all, but if you want it (or need it) 310 can be transformative.

read this athlete spotlight and more in our May 2014 Newsletter here!

Anthony “T-Bone” Kafouros

Gun Show
I’m not sure, but the rumor is Tony and Manny Serrano were getting some Bro-Reps in on the reverse-curl machine when the conversation of CrossFit came up. Manny, effusive as ever, tells Tony he’s got to check out CrossFit 310 sometime. “Agreed,” says Tony, “let’s stay focused though, I’m losing my Pump”…Tony Kafouros is one of my favorite CrossFit 310 surprises.  A busy work schedule combined with epic hunting trips and what seems like an “ambitious” weekend social life, kept Tony flying under the radar for the majority of his first year at 310.  One thing we knew for sure, his shoulder strength put him in an “other worldly” category. Any pressing move or any day with handstand push-ups in it, had us all wondering what Tony would bring.  However, as heroic as those days were, the days that challenged his mobility and technique brought him right back to mortal. Over the course of the last year though, Tony seems to have planted his flag and begun an ascent to the top of the boards.  A newfound appreciation for mobility and the ability to suffer more than most is a potent combination in our world.
For me, Tony is always great to have in class. His eagerness to learn, to stay healthy, to play furiously, to never take himself too seriously, and to lead by example, are the ingredients I’m looking for in a 310 athlete.
Bone, I’m glad you’re here brother. Looking forward tons more play and a few more jokes about your biceps.

-Koach

1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?
I like anything over head.  If it allows me to use some shoulders to compensate, I’m in!  When in doubt, just muscle through it.  Of course having the shoulder strength of Atlas helps!  Handstand push-ups in a tomorrow’s WOD?  Let’s do it!
I prefer “rounds for time” to “AMRAP’s”.  With rounds for time I can budget the workload a little better and really try to blow through the last few rounds.  You tend to get that second wind when you can see the light at the end of the tunnel…the pain seems more temporary!
I like any WOD that can get me on the all-time top 5 board!  There’s something about the possibility of seeing another “T BONE” in lights that gives me a little extra push.

2.  What’s on your Suck List?
Okay, time to be humble.  This is an easy one.  The number one skill I hate to see in a WOD is pistol squats.  They look easy, don’t take much strength, but they guarantee me a no Rx each time they appear.  I guess a close second would be muscle ups, but that’s more of a love/hate relationship.  I enjoy doing them and working on them.  I’m just not proficient enough to really rely on them during WOD’s.

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
Sporadic with a side of alcohol…next question please!  I guess I focus on protein consumption.  We beat our muscles up pretty good in here, so I focus on replenishing them as much as I can.  Eggs are my friends.  When I’m eating clean, it would be the closest to a Zone diet.  I try to keep it well balanced.

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?
My boy Manny Serano brought me into the 310 family.  I had briefly frequented another box in the Southbay.  Manny spoke so highly of the 310 box that I gave it a shot and was immediately hooked.  Thanks Manny!

5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?
That first stint lasted about six months.  This was back in 2010.  There was a small box in the back of the Boxing Works Gym on 2nd and PCH.  If not the only, it was one of maybe just a few in the area at the time.  I stumbled across it walking down PC and poked my head in.  I gave it a shot the next week and enjoyed it and wanted to continue going. But the box moved up to PV, so i went back to the gun show…24 hour Fitness.  A few years later Manny brought me to 310.  This was March 2012, so exactly 2 years this time around.

6.  Describe your biggest milestone, achievement, or “A-ha” moment?
I’ve been a gym rat since I was 14 years old, so my habits in fitness were built on the foundation of aspiring toward the strongest bench press and biggest guns!  Although that raw strength helped me get through a lot of WOD’s in the beginning there is a whole lot more that goes into being competitive at Crossfit.  I think this really hit home with me when I did my first muscle up.  I suffered countless attempts trying to “benchpress” my way up there.  Finally, one day with a little Koaching I popped up with what seemed like minimal effort.  It’s all about proper technique?…”a ha…this is true for every movement we do in here!”.

7.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
Embrace the camaraderie!  [Cut to: Koach smiling and nodding]
The best thing about Crossfit is the guy next to you pushing you, making you go faster, bringing out that competitive edge from within.  You want to repay him?  Push him right back…a little smack talk doesn’t hurt either! [Cut to: Koach frowning and shaking my head]
Be well rounded!  Try to enjoy working on every movement including mobility.  It’s a good feeling to look at the WOD the night before and know that you have an opportunity to be competitive.  That’s what will get you up at 5:15 if 6 is the only class you can make that day.  The more movements you become proficient in, the more mobile you are, the more strength and endurance you’ve built…the more often that will happen.

Most important…have fun!

read this Athlete Spotlight and more in our April 2014 Newsletter here.

 

Brittny Burford

Brittny Burford is a Force, and participation is her middle name.  Whatever this girl puts her energy behind, you can be sure the thing is going to move forward.  Dedicated Wife, loving mother, entrepreneur, successful real estate agent and CrossFitter; that’s a pretty awesome log line.
I met Brittny over three years ago now.  She has basically been with us from the beginning of our existence, and we’ve both gotten to watch each other grow and move through various arcs of life.  Our common place is in class together, and CrossFit is our native language.  I have sweet coaching memories with Britt—watching her move through the initial growth inside of CrossFit, and working her way up towards the top of our boards.  I can remember being so surprised by her drive and sense of playful competition.  When she first came into our place, I just didn’t think she’d play so hard.  The bubbly edifice she walks around with hides the ferocious competitor and takes a lot of us by surprise.  As a coach, that is always an awesome surprise.
I am so glad to be writing this tiny intro for my friend.  I am overjoyed to be watching Britt and Graham start their family and transition into an amazing new period of their lives.  Britt has made her way back into classes and I am so excited to play with her again.  If you get the chance, WOD with this girl.  She knows how to do this right.  She’s going to have fun no matter what, she’s going to give her best, and she’s going to smile through most of the class.
Love you like family Britt.
-Koach
1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?
Favorite WOD’s of mine are Annie (double unders and ab mats) & Grace (clean & jerks) for quick WOD’s. I am a fan of Fight Gone Bad & Filthy Fifty for the longer WOD’s as they both really test your endurance and wind. I love pretty much every barbell skill especially Squat Cleans and I love Box Jumps!
2.  What’s on your Suck List?
Oh man I got many items on my Suck List now that I am back after pregnancy, but one that has always been on my suck list is running. No matter how much I try and train for running and I have even ran a marathon before (my one and only!), it’s just not my favorite and I don’t feel like I would ever like it. The Snatch is also on my Suck List, that is the one move that just doesn’t feel comfortable for me no matter how much Kris teaches the positions and pulls. Another skill that has been on my suck list forever is the dreaded muscle up which is one goal I had pre-baby and was not achieved and now it’s back on that goal list!
3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
Right now with LiveFit I am definitely eating Paleo-esque, no grains, gluten, sugar, etc. It’s actually a lot easier than I thought it would be, it’s really all about discipline, meal prep at home, and saying no to certain foods that you simply do not need. I have been having more energy these past few weeks, which is so helpful with having a 3 month old. Before I was sleeping in with her and just not having the kind of energy I have recently and I can credit that to eating better and cleaner. I do plan to continue my cleaner eating habits after February as I have a goal to lose the baby weight. I will have to admit before LiveFit I was just eating “healthy” but definitely what I wanted and that usually ended up being a Chocolate Chip Cookie everyday (pregnancy craving!). I haven’t had one in over 3 weeks now and I actually haven’t had a craving to eat one yet but maybe a treat is in my future in March!
4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?
I heard about Crossfit from my husband Graham when he started going right before we got married in 2010.
5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?
I have been doing Crossfit and been a member of the 310 family since January 2011, an amazing 3 years with a wonderful group of athletes and coaches!
6.  Describe your biggest milestone, achievement, or “A-ha” moment?
My biggest milestone/acheivement was in 2012 when I competed in 2 team competitions, WOD Gear & Winter Shakedown, with my husband. To be able to compete with your significant other and represent our gym was an extremely proud moment of mine and the support that the gym brought was amazing. It is my goal is to get back to that level and be able to compete again with our daughter rooting us on!7.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
The words of encouragement and advice I would give to the new people is to try and make your workouts a part of your daily routine, stick with it, and try not to get frustrated as we all have been in your shoes before. Listen, watch, and learn from the veterans. Ask them questions, we love to help and see others grow just like we have!  During every WOD try and chase another person, that will help you stay focused, motivated, and keep going. Most importantly track & post your numbers because you will be able to see how you get stronger and faster. Always remember to encourage each other because you’re all in it together!read this athlete spotlight and more in the March 2014 newsletter here

 

Stephanie Maginnis

Steph Maginnis is an athlete and friend that I find myself crossing my fingers for. She came to our box via the amazing Fleischauers (ask me about our blood drive!). When you first see Steph, the word “Athlete” pops into your head shortly after. You can just tell that she does “something.”  I would learn early on that she played division 1 soccer at USC and sure enough, when she came to class, she demonstrated a fitness level and sense of competition that seemed like it had been refined in the fires of daily competition. And yet, there was more to her. 
Steph’s story is more complex than you might initially think–and much more identifiable.  With her permission, I bring everyone into the common conversation that Steph and I have been having for 2 years. It’s a frank conversation that I’ve had DOZENS of times, and I anticipate having dozens more. The profile I wish to present to you, is that of a talented athlete at war with culture and popular expectations. Her internal war revolves around the fear of being “Too Big”, “Too muscular”.   The conversation involves questions on diet, and social pressures, and common comparisons with others. CrossFit is a revolution of Fitness that we’re all on fire for, but for many many women, it’s very difficult to slip comfortably into this new athleticism while we all look at magazine covers that feature a waifish type of beauty.
Steph looks like she was designed with CrossFit in mind.  She’s tough as nails and capable of tremendous force.  She’s got an engine for endurance and a frame that’s aching to test its powers every day.  The mental wrestling match is palpable though. I can see her struggling with this new athletic perception of Beauty, while every cell in her body is craving the competition and play it’s fully capable of.  And this is an honest place to be.  She is on the front line of a paradigm shift, and so are the rest of us.  
I am so excited to highlight Steph and her story this month as we embark on our 3rd LiveFit 310 competition. Diet and exercise and identity will always be in the same conversation. I am encouraged to watch an athlete and a friend, continue to have breakthroughs, continue to find more things to be excited about, and continue to grow and push against perceived boundaries.  I look forward to seeing steph in class every day.  She has an awesome sense of humor (i.e. she lets me tease her all the time) and it’s a blast to watch and see what she’s going to do next.  I could not be more excited to be playing with Pete and Steph every day at the box.
What a great ongoing conversation and worth having with you Steph. You make our place better.  I’m having a great time with you. 
-Koach

1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?
My favorite WOD’s are the ones that are longer and incorporate running and body weight types of exercises.  But I think most people that know me already know that, ha ha.

2.  What’s on your Suck List?
The Olympic lifts are pretty tough for me.  My suck list would definitely have to include dead lifts, over head squats, pushups and power snatches.

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
Before LiveFit last year my diet was eating whatever I wanted.  LiveFit taught me to make more conscious decisions about what I ate, and it changed a lot about my eating.  For the most part I think I eat pretty clean.  I definitely have a sweet tooth which I give in to a couple times a week.  I would love to eat more Paleo but the preparation is the tough part for me.

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?
When my husband and I were living in Redondo Beach, Erica Fleischauer was our neighbor.  She was just about 6 months out from having triplets and looked amazing.  She was lean and looked really fit.  I asked her what she was doing to look that great and she told me about Crossfit 310 and just raved about it.  Once I looked it up I noticed a friend from high school, Jenny Atkinson, went to 310 as well.  I got in touch with Kris and did my intro and loved it!

5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?
I have been doing Crossfit for about 3 years now.  I took about 7 months off and then realized I missed it too much and started back up again.

6.  Describe your biggest milestone, achievement, or “A-ha” moment?
I’m not sure if I have an exact milestone or A-ha moment.  I like the moments when I can tell that I am improving.  For example, when I start beating my previous times for WODS or my previous weights for the different lifts.

7.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
I think for new people it’s important to just stick with it.  The first week or so is going to be tough and your body might hate you, but it starts feeling better and becoming more fun.  And then it becomes addicting.

Read this athlete spotlight and more in the February 2014 Newsletter: here

 

Kristian Bassilios

Takedown/Reversal

When I talk about Kristian Bassilios in the box, I choose between two different angles with his story.  Frequently, I’ll describe Kristian’s dramatic internal/external  wrestling match in his first six months with us. Ask him to describe his earlier self and he will tell you he was “deceptively” de-conditioned. Despite being thin and “cut”, and having a natural athleticism, Kristian found himself on day one, with almost zero aerobic or anaerobic capacity.  Whatever strength he might have had, was consequently nullified, and the struggle began.
The wrestling match, as I saw it, began with an internal knowledge that his true physical state should be strong and athletic. This knowledge was pit against the reality of his current state.  I can honestly say that there may never have been a greater internal civil war at 310, and the reason Kristian is in the spotlight this month is because of how much admiration I have for his turn around. With a commitment to consistency, Body weight strength came first; Push-ups, pull-ups, Muscleups!! Then some technical strength with the Oly lifts and bar path, and now we’re looking at raw strength this year.
The wrestling match is great to tell, but as I said earlier, there’s another version of Kristian’s story. It’s actually my story too. Kristian is married to Katie, my wife’s cousin. All of us have been friends because of family get togethers, really. We would see each other a couple times a year and not much else. Now, because of CrossFit, we see each other all the time. We get to joke with each other, have another thing in common, and hear more about each others lives because of the box. It has been one of the most surprising blessings, born out of this fun thing we’re all chasing.
Kristian is family, and more than just that, a friend. He’s valuable to me and the box and the culture in a hundred ways that I can’t write about here.
Thanks for everything you do and everything you’re becoming cuz.
-Koach

1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?
My favorite WOD’s tend to be those that incorporate body-weight and gymnastic exercises such as pull-ups, push-ups, ring dips, handstand push-ups, muscle-ups, etc.  They tend to favor folks with slighter builds like me which allows me to make up ground on those that can blast through the really heavy barbell work or are able to run significantly faster than me.

2.  What’s on your Suck List?
Anything that puts a heavy tax on cardio and lungs (can you say burpees, double-unders and running?).  I know that I’m paraphrasing, but after my first visit to Crossfit310, Koach essentially said that I was the most deceptively out of shape person he’d ever met.  By all outward appearances I should have been in decent shape but I don’t think I made it 25 yards doing running jump before I had to take a knee.  For the first several months the warm-up alone was enough to have me completely winded.  Additionally, anything that highlights my poor posterior chain and ankle mobility, such as wall-balls, thrusters and overhead squats, is torturous.  That said, all of these things are vastly better than when I started and I continue to tackle them at every opportunity.

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
Besides Paleo, I’m not sure I even know what the other diets listed really consist of. My wife and I tend to avoid gluten and due to a history of heart disease in my family we try to avoid as much red meat and animal fats as we can.  I’m a creature of habit and have essentially the same breakfast (banana, 1 piece of seasonal fruit, yogurt and some almonds) and lunch (tuna, avocado, 2 pieces of seasonal fruit and more almonds) every day.  Dinner tends to be chicken or fish and a salad or cooked veggie.

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?
My wife Katie started coming to CrossFit310 in January of 2011.  She was getting a lot out of it and consistently would come home and tell me about how great it was and what a benefit she thought it would be for me.  After three months of testimonials I decided to come in and give it a shot.  As I mentioned earlier, it was a real eye-opener to see how poor my conditioning was and it motivated me to start a two day a week routine.

5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?
Since April 2011, so about two and a half years.

6.  Describe your biggest milestone, achievement, or “A-ha” moment?
There are a lot of milestones and achievements that I’m both proud of and amazed by considering where I started.  The absolute top of that list though is double-unders.  It’s hard for me to identify a single moment and I don’t even remember the approximate time-frame when the change came but earlier this year when double-unders ceased to own me was a huge achievement.  Anyone who was around when I was learning double-unders can attest that it was the one thing that was guaranteed to drive me to a mental breakdown in a WOD.  It wasn’t enough that I would wear myself out trying to get them done… slowly… one at a time, but 100% of my failures resulted in a painful, taunting lash of the back of my left hand.  I would wear the brand of the jump rope for days afterwards as a humiliating reminder of my most recent failure.  It was the ultimate aversion therapy and there are more WOD’s than I can count that ended prematurely with a curse-filled screaming rant.  Now don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t consider myself to be good at double-unders but now I know that I can finish a WOD that has them as a component.  Conquering double-unders both mentally and physically is extremely encouraging and makes me realize that incremental improvement may not always be easy to identify and measure but with persistence evolution is possible.

7.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
The first thing I would tell a new member is that the two most important virtues for success in my opinion are patience and persistence.  There may be movements and skills that you are able to pick-up quickly, but likely the vast majority of it will be completely foreign and require you to re-train your body from a lifetime of how you’ve traditionally used it.  It took years for you to lose the mobility to sit into the perfect squat that any toddler is capable of naturally, so what makes you think you can develop that mobility again in a few months?  There is no quick fix, there is only patience and persistence.  Neither of these is easy and I would be hypocritical to say that I have been able to embrace these virtues at all times and never lose sight of them, but they are the key to your evolution.  Track your numbers consistently so that you can see the progress because it is hard to see the progress day-to-day and it’s easy to feel like you are stuck on an endless plateau.  The changes are much more easily measured month-to-month and year-to-year.

The second area I would touch on is to make sure you are spending ample time on mobility and mastering movement.  If the only time you get to mobilize is during the warm-up, progress is going to be very slow.  If you can, get in 15 minutes or more before class and start loosening up tight muscles and connective tissue.  Knowing how limited my mobility is in my posterior chain, I spend most of my time before class rolling out my lumbar, glutes, hamstrings and hips, then moving on to lunge-to-elbow, inchworm, ass-to-grass, pigeon, couch and hamstring stretches.  Usually the mobility item you hate the most, is the one you should be doing the most frequently.  For me it used to be lunge-to-elbow and ass-to-grass.  As those have gotten easier I’ve started focusing more on inchworm.  Mastering movements is also essential.  If your technique for a given movement is flawed it will be inefficient.  At best it will wear you out during a WOD or at worst lead to injury.  Scale things appropriately and focus on mastering the technique. Your progress to moving more weight, doing more reps and doing them faster, will come quicker because you will have mechanical advantage on your side.  Sheer strength will only take you so far.  Don’t hesitate to ask a coach or one of your peers to keep an eye on you during skill work and point out areas to improve on.  Some of the best tips and cues I’ve received were from other members based on their experience and observation.
Last and most certainly not least, listen to your body and give it the respect it deserves.  There is motivation in chasing others’ numbers but there is no shame in moving at your own pace.  For example, I continue to use a relatively light weight for wall-balls due to the limitations of my squat, and will likely never catch up to the barbell weights that some others are capable of due to the difference in how we are built.  The only person I’m judged against is myself and I am getting better every day.  It is very easy to get caught up in the competition and push yourself beyond your limits.  In the end the danger you run is taking yourself out of the race altogether.  In that same vein is knowing how to fail safely.  I hate to break it to you, but you are going to fail.  As a matter of fact, if you are not failing you are not pushing yourself hard enough.  That said, practice ditching the barbell, letting go of the rings during a muscle-up attempt, aborting a high box jump, or bailing out of a handstand.  Working within your limits and knowing how to get yourself out of trouble will save you from an injury.  Recovering from an injury is the ultimate test of patience.  I’ve been nursing a strained Achilles for the last 12 months and previously dealt with a strained lower back for 4 months.  The Achilles started during double-unders in a WOD and I continued to push through.  It eventually got bad enough that it was affecting my ability to walk normally.  Even once you feel better, realize that you may not be 100% so take your time getting back to where you left off and make sure that you give extra attention to stretching and mobilization.  Inevitably, ramping up slowly is quicker than re-injuring yourself.
You CAN do it.  No matter how impossible it seems or how slow the progress is, you CAN conquer it. Patience and Persistence are the keys.
Read this athlete spotlight and more in the January 2014 Newsletter:  here

Jenny Atkinson

This intro is an absolute joy for me to write. I’ve been rummaging through boxes of old moments that are piled high in the 40 year old attic of my memory.  I sit down now to bring some chronology and life to a crucial personality that helped shape what you now call CrossFit 310.

OG
Originally, it was not called CrossFit 310. It was called an experiment. With no legal permit from the government, I began my CrossFit experiments on myself, and with my personal training clients.  Jenny Atkinson was a client. We trained numerous times a week together and pretty soon, she became the CrossFit prototype for our two classes that ran out of Mitchell Fitness in Torrance. She was athletic and strong, and kind of a princess about her hands at times, but she always accepted challenges and would continue to get stronger and more capable, seemingly every week.
Jenny truly deserves her OG status. She supported what would become CrossFit 310 when there were no walls of our own, when there were no stickers or T-shirts, or  computer sign-ins. She helped build the original website with me, she got me on Facebook and Twitter and has been the online voice of CrossFit 310 since the beginning.
Without Jenny’s support and enthusiasm from day one, there’s a good chance that CrossFit 310 would not be here for us to play around with every day. She was the first girl to graduate to the 26lb Kettle (how funny is that!), the first girl to climb the rope, the first girl to get 25 straight push-ups, the first girl to deadlift 225, the first girl to get her strict pull-ups and then Kip.  She was there when we all had nicknames from Top Gun…this girl is OG!
I could write so much more. Jenny’s story is still going–which is probably the most satisfying thing for me as a coach.  She continues to support CrossFit 310, and she continues to grow.
Thank you Jenny, you’re a revolutionary. I love you sis.
-Iceman

1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?
I used to love any WOD with running or double unders, and now that my foot is almost healed I hope to love those things again.  The Smoking Gun was a fun WOD, and another WOD I got to do wearing a weight vest made me feel like a bad ass – ha!  I also like to Deadlift, and I kind of love (to hate) burpees.

2.  What’s on your Suck List?
Pretty much everything, especially after coming back from my injury.  Aside from “everything,” top items on my sucklist include:  overhead squats, kipping pullups and kipping my toes to bar (I struggle with getting the rhythm of recycling the kip), AbMats, and picking up the Heavy Bag which I think has been retired from the gym after it ripped and the stuffing started coming out (oh darn!).

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
Right now my diet is a mess.  I am following the “eat what you want in moderation” diet.  That is not ideal or what I would like to be doing.  I would say that I go through phases of eating that way, vs eating a clean “paleo-ish” diet.  It all depends on my planning and meal prep.  When I am able to get into a good routine I can see and feel the difference.  I have tried so many different things, but I would say what works best for me is to eat clean 6 days a week with a scheduled cheat day built in to keep me sane.

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?
In 2007 I was working out with a personal trainer (one of Kris’ good friends).  He moved away so I started training with Kris.  After awhile Kris started incorporating CrossFit WODs into our training, and a while after that CrossFit 310 was born.  So I guess you could say I am the original and first member of CrossFit 310.

5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?
I guess it’s been since Summer of 2009, although I’ve had to take a few hiatuses due to my work and an injury.

6.  Describe your biggest milestone, achievement, or “A-ha” moment?
I don’t know if there has been one milestone or moment.  I think it’s more of the overall big picture of what I have learned about health/diet/fitness since becoming involved with CrossFit.  Although, 5 strict pullups was pretty cool.

7.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
-Stick with it.  Be patient.  Take the time to learn the proper form and movements.
-Work on the things you don’t like to work on – it will make you better.
-Believe that “you can” (do a strict pullup, Deadlift 200#, run a mile, get your muscle-up, or whatever the challenge is).  If you don’t believe then you never will be able to do it.
-Post your weights and times to the website, or in a WOD book or in an app on your phone.  It will show you how far you’ve come and make you feel good about the things you’ve accomplished!
-Take advantage of the CrossFit community inside 310 and outside.  There is a wealth of knowledge within our box walls and on that thing called the internet.  Want to get better at a movement, or need help fine tuning your diet?  Learn from your fellow crossfitters and google anything else you want to know!  It’s out there for your taking.  Also our people are awesome so make friends and have fun.
-Do your mobility and then go home and do it more.

Read this athlete spotlight and more in the December 2013 Newsletter:  here

 

Pete Maginnis

Thing From the Fantastic Four

This is just the best way I can describe Pete: Strength like a super hero. Made of stone.  Pete Maginnis has an awesome story arch.  The hero with mutant powers of strength and recovery, balanced against the very mortal battle he wages against his immovable tissues and joints.

Pete snuck into classes via his awesome wife Stephanie.  In his Clarke Kent, unassuming style, Pete eased into getting to know everyone with grace, and a bunch of humility.  All the while, Pete keeps his powers of strength a secret, and he continues to build himself up physically. Slowly and patiently he keeps adding weight to his bars, but he also allows me to pull him back and demand better position, and a wiser course at times. If you’ve been in any class with me teaching the need for mobility, you’ll have also heard me reference Pete. The lesson is always the same: mobility is such a crucial aspect inside of this CrossFit discipline, that even Pete, with all his strength, is humbled when asked to go overhead, or hold rack position.  The lesson always finishes though with this true statement: If Pete masters mobility, he’ll be at the top of the whiteboards. He’s that strong. He’s that athletic.
Everything is always awesome, all the time…
The statement above is Pete’s response to my benign question, “How are you man?”  It’s usually following him saying first, “Happy Monday Kris!”…Ridiculous. I’m a pretty positive guy (annoyingly at times), but I don’t even show up to class with statements like these.  I suspect Pete is delivering this tongue in cheek, but he never ever lets on.  If he thinks it’s funny he never tells me, and I’ll be darned if it doesn’t work.  It always makes me feel better. Ridiculous, I know.
Pete is a total joy to have in our place. Like I said earlier, he has set himself up for the most heroic story arch. We’ll all just sit back and watch the tale unfold. Will the hero grow even stronger, more powerful? With great power comes great responsibility, right?
Any way it goes Pete, you are always awesome, all the time. I’m having a great time with you.
 -Koach

1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?
I like the workouts that incorporate body weight movements; pull ups, push ups, ab mats, box jumps, and double unders. I prefer the longer workouts that I can chip away at.

2.  What’s on your Suck List?
My suck list starts with my mobility and everything that follows is because of my lack of mobility or form. Over Head Squats, any kind of snatch, thrusters, and any kind of clean.

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
I just finished eating pizza for dinner. I would say that my diet does not look anything like paleo, primal?,zone?, or clean. I don’t even know what some of those are. The first time I ever even watched what I ate was last February during LiveFit.  I think everything should be in moderation.

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?
Steph (my wife) had been going to CrossFit 310 a few years back and she kept trying to convince me to go. I did not have any time to fit it in at that point. I was able to free up some time and we re-joined together.

5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?
It’s been about a year and a half since my exhausting intro class.
6.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
The advice I would give and that I follow as well is make sure to plan crossfit into your daily schedule. Even if you do not feel like working out make it to one of the classes. You will be able to get in a great workout because of the other people or coaches in the class.

Read this athlete spotlight and more in the November 2013 Newsletter: here

Lauren Janarella

There’s something about Lauren Janarella that makes you want to tease her all the time. She’s small, and cute, and she’s feisty.  She’s like a puppy–a puppy that can do more Pull-ups and Handstand Pushups than you. A puppy that can run circles around you in a WOD.

Fish to Water
Lauren came to 310 a couple of years ago–by accident. She was supposed to be at another CrossFit somewhere, but ended up at our place instead.  The intro session was like pouring a fish from a ziplock bag into a 400 gallon tank.  It looked like she was born to run and play like us.  Looking back, it’s no surprise to me that she is connected everywhere in 310.

In late August, the culmination of Lauren’s time at 310, and her desire to compete, intersected perfectly. Lauren went up to Hollywood to compete in the Lift for Love Competition.  In three furious WODs, the very best of her came out. At the end of each WOD, Lauren laid in a heap of sweat and tape and maybe a little blood; but at the end of the day, she found herself standing on the podium, in 1st place for the intermediate division.

So, that’s the easy part. It’s easy to see and note Lauren’s physical gifts. But the following are the things that I know about this girl, that you should know too.

Working on the Clean
If you didn’t know, Lauren is responsible for keeping the Gym Clean.  She orchestrates our cleaning crew and together they keep our place clean in a way that few gyms even attempt to do. I’ve never announced it publicly, but it should be noted and praised that her brain is compelled to face the med-balls correctly, scrub phantom hand marks relentlessly, and meticulously straighten the kettles. That stuff improves your experience at 310, but It’s a thankless job.

Hangry (Hungry+Angry)
This is going to sound weird but, I love Lauren because of her unbridled emotional responses to nearly everything.  It’s not the responses really that I love, it’s the follow through. This girl has the record for frustration in the box, but she also holds the record for apology texts a couple hours later.  This girl is up for friendship in an old-school way. She wants to hang out and have dinner with families, she wants to know our kids, and is committed to the hard work of friendship. Honestly, one of the best things I could say about Lauren is, I know we could get in a fight and she’ll still love me like a brother. These are things you don’t get to see while she’s racing by you in a WOD, but they’re important.

Love you like a sister Squirt. Can’t wait to see what’s next.

-Koach

1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?

I tend to favor the endurance wod’s with a lot of body weight movements, like pull-ups, running, etc. I like ones with lots of skills incorporated into the wod. I usually like them all especially if I can practice a skill I am hoping to improve, like my hand stand walk or wall balls/double unders, etc. -Those aren’t always my favorite ones though;)

2.  What’s on your Suck List?

I mentioned one, wallballs, in the previous question. I also feel like some of my olympic lifts are on my suck-list but I am learning and hope to continue to gain knowledge in that area. I have several things on my suck list but I am continuing to practice and improve all of them.

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)

I always try to eat as cleanly as possible. I have always been one to read labels and make sure there isn’t anything weird in the ingredients section. I like all natural foods and I eat all of them! I love eating food. I don’t really cut anything completely out of my diet. You learn as you go, just like everything else.

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?

I moved from my hometown of SC, away from my family, to the west coast. I then acquired a new job that had me traveling all over the country. It is hard to make friends when you are so far from home and you travel all of the time. I am a runner, I always went to the gym and I loved Insanity!! Some of you may know Shaun T! Hehe.. I would do it in the hotel rooms when I traveled. I really don’t remember how I heard of CF but I looked up the closest gym to the Riviera village and then I emailed Kris. I thought I was contacting CF Redondo, right up the street from me. I had in fact contacted 310 and I had already made the appointment with Kris and I didn’t want to miss it, so I figured I would check out a couple of places before deciding. When I met Kris and Tiff, who were the only ones there for my mini intro session, I knew I would love it! Tiff was cheering the whole time.. I was like, this is a cool chick! Kris was so into telling be about the philosophy and I loved his passion. I signed up on the spot!

I had a friend visit with me on my first day in, ahhh, I remember it like it was yesterday! We joined a little group of newbies and Coach Max was teaching us kettle bell swings and helped us do a little WOD. I knew I would make friends and it ended up being the best thing that could have ever happened to me. Several things changed for the better in my life, I met people I now love dearly, Max has been an amazingly happy part of my life and I now have a second family here in CA and I am so thankful. All of these positive changes have happened for a reason and the most positive of them all are because I became apart of the 310 family! I love this place, I love the people, and I even love cleaning!! I really do! I like that I can play a part and take care of something that means so much to me and do something to help out everyone there. I am so glad that I met Koach and his wonderful family, Tawni, Peyton, Finn, and now little Deck! I am so happy also to have met every person at our box. We have so many great people who do so much and are all amazing!! I am so glad I met you all
5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?

I am going on year two! It will be two years in February I believe. Maybe January..

6.  Describe your biggest milestone, achievement, or “A-ha” moment?

I feel like those are happening all of the time in this sport. I love it! There are so many times I have been frustrated or thought something was so hard and I may never get it, and then I surprise myself. I work hard on each skill or strength and then I improve. Du’s were one of the first things I never thought I would get, then kipping pull-ups. I always wonder why my brain won’t comprehend a movement and then I get it, and that’s it! It may take some time but practice helps. My muscle-up was another big achievement that I got when I had a calf injury, I am still practicing it to improve.

7.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?

I would tell anyone coming into CF to practice a lot if you want to be good at something in particular, try not to get too frustrated, if you are like me, and always make it fun, no matter what! It comes more naturally for some people and not so much for others but those that put in the time, if you can, and work hard, it will come… eventually. I have gained a tiny bit of patience…it still needs improvement, but it does take patience.

Be yourself always. Listen to your body and do what’s right for you. One more thing, be supportive and be apart of the team. It is competitive and crossfit is a sport, but it is also a community of people linked by a love for it. Be kind to others inside your own box and outside of your box. We are all friends and we should be happy for each other’s accomplishments. We are here together to push each other to be better and help one another. Every person has their own strengths inside of here and outside of CF. Treat everyone well and make it fun. Don’t ever be afraid to ask questions- I always ask question 😉

You can do anything you put your mind to!

   
Read this athlete spotlight and more in the October 2013 Newsletter:  here

 

Carrie Rey

The first thing to be emblazoned across this Spotlight is the fact that Carrie Rey is one of the strongest and most athletic women at 310.  Kei Bullock puts it this way:  “Not that it’s all about the Rx, but honestly she is one of the few who consistently Rx’s WODs and makes it look easy.”  But you already know this about Carrie…   Rewind to last week.  Carrie Rey is Overhead Squatting. She PR’s at 80lbs for three reps and I am absolutely beaming. It’s one of the coolest things I’ve seen in the box and impossible for me to relate to everyone. It’s not the weight that’s impressive (although it should be noted that most humans would not be able to do that); it’s the path to that day that makes a significant impression. 

 
Rewind two years. 
Carrie is doing her best to sit down onto a hard target with a technique bar. It’s got no shot at balancing over her midline. But she continues to work on it.  She does her work and begs her tissues to comply. They are stubborn and disobedient. But she continues to work on it. 
 
Rewind three years. 
 There’s a new girl in class, friends with Celeste, and she looks athletic. Her name is Carrie.  When I call out to the class to sit into an air squat, Carrie folds “like a lawn chair.”   I thought she was tying her shoes at first, but thanks to the incredible likeness it had to my old Squat, I know we are going to have a long, ongoing, challenging conversation. 

What Carrie has done with her Squat over the course of her time at 310 is almost unprecedented. I commiserate with her all of the time over the mobility curse we were both born under. I respect her constant development.

The Mayor
I used to make fun of Carrie Rey and call her The Mayor because it seemed like she knew everyone. She has either taught, fought, or played volleyball with everyone in the South Bay.  Well, it seems like it anyway.  As I took stock of the entirety of our interactions, I realized that she has an unwavering generosity about her. That may sound banal, but I want to underscore that her generosity has been so consistent with me over the course of three years, that I can truly understand the powerful draw to this girl–who plays as hard as she can all the time, and loves the people she’s with. It’s hard to say how many people have told me how much they admire Carrie over the years–a lot. And I’m one of them. 

I love you Carrie, and I’m proud to have you in our place. 

–Koach

1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?
I don’t really have a favorite. I don’t know if I even have a favorite skill. If I had to pick a favorite, it would be the chipper WODs. I know they tend to be longer, but I kinda like doing a lot of different movements, rather than a couplet with two movements that are just gonna kick my butt!

2.  What’s on your Suck List?
That would have to be Toes-2-Bar! I go into T-2-B purgatory every time they’re in a WOD! Many of the gymnastic moves are rough for me, like Muscle-Ups and Handstand Walks. Of course there’s also my mobility, or lack thereof! Just about everything I do in CrossFit is a work in progress.

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
The closest thing to a diet I do would be Paleo. I do try to eliminate most carbs and processed foods. Since our LiveFit challenge here at the gym, I have been cooking more at home and drinking more water. Overall, I pretty much eat whatever I want.

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?
A friend of mine, Celeste Adams, introduced me to CrossFit 310. She knew that I liked doing different types of workouts. I had been doing Muay Thai kickboxing for many years and I was looking for another way to stay in shape other than boxing, and CrossFit fit the bill. 

5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?
I’ve been doing CrossFit for three years.

6.  Who are you chasing in here?  Or, who are you running from?
I chase everyone! I love training with Kei and Jojo in the morning. They always go hard and I enjoy the encouragement I get from them, especially so early in the morning. When it comes to lifting, I’m always chasing the “strong girls”: Katie Lara, Misty, Tiff, Tawni. I think it’s amazing the amount of weight they can move, and I would love to be in their league some day.

7.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
Give CrossFit time! CrossFit is a mindset and you have to allow it time to grow, so you can grow inside CrossFit. Take time to learn the movements, don’t worry about time or weights, and just keep moving!!

Read this athlete spotlight and more in the September 2013 Newsletter:  here

 

Jerome Fraillon

Become Something Else
Jerome Fraillon has something I wish I could bottle and sell to everyone. It’s a perspective really, but that perspective empowers him to do things that most people can’t, or aren’t willing to do: Become Something Else.  This is something we all want, in one way, shape or form, but the word “Become” infers time, growth, even patience. The thing most of us want is radical change, but we want it now and we want a magic wand to do it.  
Jerome has a radical fitness arc that is difficult to measure unless you’ve been with 310 for a while. Over the course of two years, Jerome has experienced a kind of change that is reflective of people like Mag Ping, Graham Burford, Helen Medina and more.  When I look at him now, I can hardly believe how far he’s come, even though I keep witnessing these things over and over again. (See almost every Athlete Spotlight before this.)  For me, this kind of change is the most exciting to witness. Longevity means a lot to us at 310. Change is only real if it lasts.  Otherwise, it’s just a phase.
 
The Frenchman/Jean Luc Jerome
I love Jerome’s demeanor maybe most of all.  For some reason, he just seems to have one of the healthiest takes on CrossFit.  He loves our place, loves our people, is always accommodating, and he plays as hard as he can when he’s here.  CrossFit makes his life better.  If he can’t do something, it doesn’t ruin his life–he just keeps working at it.  He is always ready to laugh, never taking himself too seriously, and is up for a challenge at the same time.  What an awesome list of ingredients that makes a great CrossFitter!
 
JLJ is subtle, but watch out for him–he might be chasing down your numbers.  I know I’m running from him.

–Koach

1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?
I look forward to WODs that include double unders. I have worked very hard to get them, and now I actually like them.

2.  What’s on your Suck List?
Besides getting up at 5:30am for the 6am class???  Bar work has been tough for me. My bar path really needs to be cleaned up, as well as my mobility. I have a hard time getting the coordination of opening up my hips as the bar is moving up.

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
Until February’s Live Fit challenge, my diet was anything that was on a menu. I would eat everything in sight. My girlfriend would have to hide food from me!  During the challenge, I decided to play a little game and cut rice, chips, soda, and bread out of my diet. It was tough the first two weeks, but worth it. The changes were unbelievable. I lost 11lbs, and I feel so much more energetic.

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?
CrossFit Hermosa closed after I worked out with them for 3 months. I ended up doing a Google search of the CrossFits in the Hermosa area. I tried out a few of them, and 310 felt like a better fit for me. The 6am crew was very welcoming and the spirit of the entire gym felt conducive to growth.

5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?
I started doing CrossFit in January 2011 as a New Year’s resolution.  Two and a half years later, I’m still at it!

6.  Who are you chasing in here?  Or, who are you running from?
I feel like I’m always chasing the 6am class. Graham, Tank, Randie, and Miguel are pushing me to go faster, and push harder everyday.

7.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
While I was writing up this interview, I looked at some of my first WODs. My pull ups were done as ring rows. My pushups were on my knees after 5.  The advice I would give to new people coming in is the same one as another member gave me a long time ago: Give it 3 months. After 3 months, your significant other will look at you and say: Wow! What happened?!!

Read this athlete spotlight and more in the August 2013 Newsletter:  here

 

Colin Lambert

I’m not even sure where to start with this.  For some reason I don’t want to craft a sentence, or consider the appropriate metaphor for the circumstance, or juggle alliterative words around for a slick delivery. Something inside of me today isn’t going to let that happen. Honestly, I’m just going to write, and we’ll see if it will ever show up anywhere.    My friend Colin Lambert died a few short weeks ago. It was sudden, and tragic in one sense, because of that. He was just too vibrant and active for it to make any sense to those of us who got to spend a bunch of time around him. He was a constant presence at CrossFit 310. He felt like a piece of equipment that just belonged with us at the gym. I think maybe it still doesn’t register that I won’t see him at the Christmas party. I would give anything for one of his jokes right now.    Colin came into the gym through Jeannie, his daughter. She was very excited to be running around with us–so much so that she dragged her dad in and somehow convinced him to stay. I still love the fact that for them, their beginning was relational.  Jeannie would tell me later that this was the first thing they could do together.


  Despite being active and riding his bike everywhere, Colin’s entry into our realm was slow and cautious. His cardiovascular threshold was lower than almost anyone I’d seen. But he moved pretty well, and he could squat, which was promising. The agreement was simple: He would operate on the sidelines and patiently grow into CrossFit. He understood his level (probably because he would almost pass out after jogging 50 meters), and he began to show up consistently. From the sidelines he would build himself stronger and stronger each week. Over the course of two-plus years, Colin’s consistency, playfulness, and open mind let him build up to a staggering level compared to where started. Double-unders, chin-ups, a pull-up, handstands, running a mile, box jumps, barbell moves, kettles, you name it. He was CrossFitting.    As I was looking through pictures for this thing, I was struck by how many class photos and group shots I saw Colin in. Barbells for Boobs, Christmas parties, Anniversary parties, Potlucks. All of them.

I don’t know how to say this without the risk of sounding morbid, but I absolutely loved Colin’s funeral. I loved sitting there and hearing from so many people in his life. I had a picture of Colin in my head, but only a fragmented picture. I could have sat there hours longer to listen and let people paint the corners and edges of his life in, so I could get a fuller sense of who he was. Inside I grieved the fact that I could have had more of a relationship with him–hearing how much he loved to sit at Starbucks, talking theology and technology. There is definitely a deeper grief I’m pulling from as I consider the loss of my father when I was young, and I would be a liar if I left this out. Losing Colin stings a little in that old wound.  I have a soft spot for fathers and sons and fathers and daughters, running around our gym.  All of this surfaced over the last few weeks.

Relationship Mattered to Colin.  That’s what the tapestry of all my memories, and the anecdotes, and the pictures reveal.  His business was considered a ministry.  The day before Colin died he was trying to connect a friend with CrossFit 310. (Success!) Because of that, he stopped by the gym, and I got to give him a hug and tell him that I loved him. What a gift!

As I’m writing, I am self-conscious of the fact that there’s a lot of me in this rant, but it won’t be edited. I know it’s a smattering of thoughts, but it’ll stay messy.  My desire is to honor Colin and his legacy of friendships, by providing one more story of his impact on lives.

This is the last Joke I heard Colin say:
Colin approached his friend Danelle, who he’d brought to class for a visit.
“Do you know what this means?” He said, pointing to the sweat on his forehead, early in the warm-up.
“That you’re working hard?” Said Danelle.
“Nope, it means I can go home!”


Miss you Colin. 

–Koach

Kei Bullock

I always love to tell the story of how I watched Kei come into 310 and bloom patiently over time.  I remember watching her grow into this place via relationship.  She seemed instantly committed to Participating in this CrossFit thing, not just using it.  Does that make sense?  Most of us walk into a CrossFit Box and see it as a tool–like a shovel or something.  I’ll use CrossFit to get something that I want done, we might be thinking.  And don’t get me wrong, that’s a valid sentiment.  What usually follows, over time, is the discovery of something so much more powerful by Participating in CrossFit with others.  The shovel is a great tool, but learning how to use that tool with ten other people around you is infinitely more profitable.  Kei seemed to know the power of Participation from the onset.  She wanted to be part of the experience for and with other people from day one.  Awesome for a Coach to watch!  One day, as we were straightening up after class, I asked her what she does for work.  Human Resources, she said.

Of course she does.

I remember immediately thinking to myself how rare it is to meet someone who embodies the description of their job title.  As far as I can see at this point, God has imprinted Human Resources into Kei’s DNA code, and I could not be more delighted. Kei’s desire to impact people runs in tandem with her desire to be impacted and learn.  She craves understanding and organization and efficiency.  She cannot wait to cheer you on during a WOD, spearhead a rally section for a competition (which garnered us a new Sled last year!), become a commanding voice and reorganize our LiveFit program, and help me develop better communication throughout CrossFit 310–and she has awesome handwriting.

 

Kei Bullock believes in the Revolution.

All of these things above are so much fun for me, but nothing trumps watching Kei having more and more fun moving in classes.  Her consistency and patience and resolve allow her a continual growth that is exciting, to say the least.  Her desire to play hard and push against her own boundaries inspires a lot of people.

I am having a blast with Kei.  I can’t wait to see what she does next.

–Koach

1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?
I love any WOD that leaves me in a sweaty heap on the floor! I’m still building the mental strength to tackle longer WODs – a fancy way of saying I prefer shorter ones.  🙂  Most elements of CrossFit don’t come naturally to me, so I don’t have a favorite skill (yet) – it’s all a learning process.

2.  What’s on your Suck List?
Sometimes it feels like everything! Bodyweight/gymnastics movements that I can’t do are at the top of the list – MUs and HSPUs.  The rest of the list is made up of things I can do but want to get better at – which is why it’s so long!

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
I wholeheartedly believe good food is one of life’s greatest joys, and I have an incurable sweet tooth. But I’ve been Paleo for about a year and a half, and I try to limit cheats to rare special occasions that I plan ahead for and eagerly anticipate. I also incorporate Zone principles such as blocks (for portion control) and combining the right ratios of carbs+protein+healthy fats in my snacks and meals, but I’m not militant about that.

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?
I became interested in CrossFit after seeing the difference it made for a volleyball friend – she could chase deeper shots and jump much higher – and I thought, I want to try whatever she’s doing. I found 310 on Yelp and came in for an intro session with Koach that resulted in the most painful and longest post-workout all-over muscle soreness I’ve ever experienced. After he reassured me that I would in fact survive, I came to my first 6 am class. Now I love starting my day with that crew and I look forward to seeing them every day.

5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?
About a year and a half. In some ways it feels longer (I can’t even remember what workouts in a “gym” were like) but in other ways it feels shorter (it’s already been how long and my DUs still suck?!)

6.  Who are you chasing in here?  Or, who are you running from?
Going into (and during) a WOD my main concern is surviving it, so I’m not really thinking about beating someone else. But, there are so many 310 girls that I admire for different reasons – Helen and Mags because of how hard they’ve worked to get to where they are; JoJo because of her resilience; Tawni and CRey because they can “lift like Lindsey”; Lauren J because she’s so damn fast; Tiff F and Kelly because they make things look so easy…the list goes on. Honestly, I am inspired EVERY DAY by the people whose names are on the whiteboard – it might not feel like you’re doing anything extraordinary, but we chose to show up, we’re pushing ourselves and each other, we’re doing it together. And I absolutely love that.

7.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
The same advice that’s been given to me, repeatedly, and that I’m constantly reminding myself of:

  1. Be patient. Strength and skill take time and practice. For most people, this means coming in consistently and working hard. Especially when that’s the last thing you feel like doing.
  2. Let go of your ego. The RX isn’t everything; some WODs will go better than others. There will always be someone who can do what you can’t do, who can learn a skill much faster, who is just a better athlete. Focus on what you can control and improve. Ask for help when you need it.
  3. CrossFit is as mental as it is physical, if not more. Your attitude, mindset, and confidence dictate how you perform and can differentiate a horrific WOD from a WOD that you’re proud of, regardless of score. Bad days, injuries, stress…we all deal with those, so what can you learn from it?
  4. How we treat each other is a big part of what makes 310 different and special. Encouraging someone else when you yourself can barely breathe, offering a suggestion when you notice technique error or inefficiency, taking a minute to help put someone else’s equipment away, complimenting someone on their effort…the little things go a long way.

.

 

Johana Montano (aka Johana Pat or Jojo)

Johana was the first athlete I had that came to CrossFit via the Paleo diet, rather than adopting the Paleo diet after finding CrossFit. From the first moment that she came into the box, she was positive and funny and up for a challenge. Honestly though, like Helen Medina, I wondered if she would stick around for long…

This just feels like the easiest thing to write.

After three years at our box, I can honestly say that Jojo is a better CrossFitter than she has ever been, and hasn’t come close to peaking yet.  She has soooooo much more fun to get to.  While the list of athletic achievements for Johana keeps growing and growing, there is another thing that differentiates her from the average athlete: the will to persevere.

Last year, during the open WOD, JoJo’s knee lit up with some significant inflammation. It took the better part of a year for us to crack the code with her knee, but she never stopped coming in. Johana is a dream to coach because she always wants to learn more, and is always willing to be challenged.  She continued to work and modify where need be–and she never stopped getting better. Sure, she lost a step on her double under, but she shot to the top of the boards with her pull-up. During that time, she learned so much about pain management, mobility, and longevity. There are very few things that make me happier as a coach than to watch someone blossom into their own coach.

A jack of all trades, JoJo can be seen wearing a number of hats around 310: LiveFit Coach, film editor (I’m indebted to her for the rest of my life!), and designer, are all areas she’s paid into 310 to make it a better place.

JoJo is honestly just one of the people that I want around as much as possible.  She makes me laugh all the time, and I’d rather do that than just about anything else.   She makes our place better and seems intent on making it even more so.

Watch her creep up the whiteboard. It’s fun.

–Koach

JoJo at Snatches for Staches

1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?
I’m definitely a big fan of bodyweight WODs! Wait, let me rephrase, I am of fan of WODs that include pull ups, push ups and T2B because if it has muscle ups or HSPU then I’m toast. I also love barbell work. I’m fascinated by all the technique it takes and trying to make it all “click.”

2.  What’s on your Suck List?
This list likes to stay a bit long. My suck list consists of muscle ups (is it considered “suck list” if you can’t even do one?), HSPU (getting there), squat snatches (stabilizing at the bottom of an OH squat). Let us also not forget about me losing my mojo on double unders PND (post knee debacle). But at the very top of my suck list is running. Running is ridiculous, but an essential part of getting my wind back. We have a love/hate relationship (though mostly hate).

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
I have eaten Paleo/Primal for the length of my CrossFit life, but for the last couple months I have been eating Paleo Zone, which definitely took some getting used to. The biggest pro is that I’m never hungry. Ever. I stuff my face with vegetables. The biggest con is all the planning it takes. But when I indulge on the occasional treat, I tend to go the savory route. I’m not much of a sweets person (I know, big weirdo).

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?
I began eating Primal after reading Mark Sisson’s The Primal Blueprint and when I would search for Paleo and Primal recipes online, I noticed that most, if not all, the bloggers (very few back then) did “CrossFit.” I did a Google search for my nearest location and tried a couple other boxes but everything just “clicked” when I wandered into CrossFit 310. And I haven’t looked back since.

5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?
I just had my three-year CrossFit anniversary on April 1st. It is crazy to think it’s been that long.

6.  Who are you chasing in here?  Or, who are you running from?
Though being an early bird 6am-er, we don’t get the privilege of checking the whiteboard to see everyone’s scores from that day, in turn we have to try and set the bar! But when I do chase people, I chase Carrie Rey (she’s so strong!), Helen (she’s come such a long way!), Mags, Tiff F. and the list goes on.  And who I’m running from? I’m not sure but I’d guess maybe the same girls I listed above, depending on the skills in that WOD – haha.

7.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
To have patience. It can easily be daunting seeing people do crazy, elite things at 310 as a beginner, but remember that everyone started somewhere. Also, to just have fun with it all. I have to remind myself of that when I’m being hard on myself and kicking rocks for not getting that PR or RX’ing that WOD. We’re here because we love it.

 

Jen Dunay

Jen Dunay loves CrossFit. I know because I have never seen anyone wrestle with more soul wrenching moments inside of the box and still stay so committed for so long. It is a beautiful and tragic marriage.  It’s nearly southern gothic, and should’ve been written by William Faulkner. 

That may sound like a bad thing to you, but let me assure you, I wouldn’t be filling up her athlete profile with this stuff if I didn’t think it was something to be elevated. 

Right now Jen is ratcheting up the ladder, going towards the top of the Whiteboards. She is consistently gaining ground, and every month she seems to get another serious toehold to climb higher. There is excitement around her. And yet, if you asked her, she would humbly describe the process as excruciatingly slow.

But that’s exactly how it happens sometimes.

Jen is an archetype, and someone out there will read this and identify.  CrossFit did not come quickly to Jen. She’s had to fight and scrape and claw her way through injury and apathy and a host of idiosyncratic booby-traps.   But she never quits.  She keeps showing up, and keeps collecting weapons for the CrossFit arsenal.

CrossFit does not come easy for me, so I think that’s why I love this Dunay experience I’m having with both Jen and Paul. The relational component is unavoidable, and I’m up for it. That’s how I like to do this.

For a quick study on process and transparency, get a few classes in with Jen.  She’s worth it.

–Koach

1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or Skill(s)?
 My favorite WODs are those that are longer and incorporate lots of skills/movements, especially anything with the barbell.  I love Fight Gone Bad, The Filthy Fifty and Hero WODs are usually pretty awful–and by awful I mean awesome!  My least favorite WOD is Karen–grrr!

2.  What’s on your Suck List?
PULL-UPS with a capital P are numero uno on my suck list.  I have been trying to get a strict pull-up for what seems like a thousand years!  I recently got a chin-up and literally cried in the bathroom afterward. Bodyweight skills in general are a struggle for me as well as understanding good barbell technique.

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
Well, anyone who knows me knows I am a foodie.  Luckily, I have always loved fruits and veggies, been a water addict, and naturally gravitated to unprocessed foods.  My problem is that I have a major sweet tooth.  I can manage to eat clean about 70% of the time, but dessert is my weakness.  I am actually on the Ben & Jerry’s mailing list and get notified immediately about new flavors.

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?
At a party, some friends from Dogtown were telling Paul and I about CrossFit and it sounded intriguing, but going to West LA was out; the following week Paul said he saw the CrossFit 310 sign very close to our home.  I called that same day.

5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?
Since June of 2011. I knew there was something special about Kris and the space he created upon entering the gym.

6.  Who are you chasing in here?  Or, who are you running from?
It’s difficult to single out only one or two women that I am chasing because I feel like I am chasing them all in strength and in skill.  However, because CrossFit is such a mental game, what I admire most are the can-do attitudes of women like Kei, Gandy, and 00Karen.  These ladies are always smiling, are adaptable in any situation, and ready to encourage someone (often me) who is struggling. Having said that, I am running from the part of me who is exactly the opposite of what I have just described.

7.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
As a person who started CrossFit with absolutely zero athletic background, it can seem daunting or frustrating at times, but also the most fun I have ever had.  In order to keep myself motivated I started keeping a journal and recording information that could be measured over time. This allows me to see my progress in black and white when I am having one of those days of doubt.  Also, developing a sense of humor about yourself helps.  That is probably the best advice. 

Read this athlete spotlight and more in the April 2013 Newsletter:  here

Jonny Lee

The best place to start with Jonny Lee is at the beginning. Jonny has the dubious distinction of receiving the Worst Intro Session Ever at 310. There were many miscues and a couple of apologies and a fire marshal walking into the middle of it, muttering something about shutting us down. I can clearly remember walking into my house and telling Tawni it would be clear evidence of a God if Jonny signed up with us.
 
Mark one for theism. 

Cut to the 80’s montage (with Herbie Hancock’s Axel F playing in the background) of Jonny’s arc of growth at 310: It begins with the resurrection of Jonny’s cardiovascular response, the shedding of a few pounds, and the infancy of his strength.  Then a million No-Reps on a million strict pull-up attempts.  Discovering Paleo, and the inverse relationship of the amount of weight Jonny loses, to the amount of clothes he wears in a WOD.  He is branded with the nickname “Topless Jonny Lee!”  His Curiosity blooms and it’s obvious he’s spending hours on end, watching CrossFit videos and reading articles.  The invitation to our Teach-to-Teach program comes, along with the hurdle over the nature of his quiet voice.  There was a plateau… and then resurgence! Hours of Olympic lifting, pursuit of a 275lb Back Squat, and rumors of a back flip…
The music tapers off. 

Jonny has grown into something that I think is important to our box. One of the things I love the most about Jonny is that he is the complete opposite of me. I envy his quiet nature sometimes. It allows him to coach in a way that I don’t. He’s curious, and introspective. I like that he always seems to be mulling something over. Jonny is mischievous, and always playing a game.  He is calculating and always has a plan of attack in the WODs.  We can learn from all of these things.
 
The bottom line is Jonny has about as much fun playing this CrossFit game as anyone that I’ve ever seen. And it makes him better. Every time he WODs, you can bet he’s chasing somebody or something.  He is always growing and I admire that. 
 
–Koach

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?

My favorite is any WOD with Olympic lifting.  Also, WODs with high-skill movements like HSPU, handstand walks, or pistols.

2. What’s on your suck list?
Number one on the list is my dead lift.  All my other lifts are oddly disproportionately stronger than my dead lift.  Second would be muscle-ups.  I definitely haven’t put enough consistent work into improving them.  And I want to be able to do back tucks sometime this year.

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
My diet hasn’t been the greatest lately.  I tend to eat out too much, but when I cook at home it’s about 90% Paleo.  I’d say I cook at home about a third of the time, and hopefully I can move that number closer to two-thirds.

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
I had heard about CrossFit for a while, but I wasn’t quite sure what it was and it took me a long time to actually try it.  I live very close to 310, and I kept driving by.  Eventually I stopped in, and despite what Kris calls a terrible intro session, I’ve been here ever since.

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
I’ve been CrossFitting for almost 2 years now.  

6. Who are you chasing in here?  Or, who are you running from?
I’m always trying to run away from Paul Dunay (figuratively though, he’s a much better runner than I am) and Joe Lyons.  I also look at the board and blog posts everyday, and try to chase the top times.  Before WODs, I will also set goals and times and try and chase those.

7. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
For anybody new, I would really buy into the idea that this is more like a school and it takes time to be “good at CrossFit.”  However, if you come in and work consistently after first learning the basics and getting a good foundation, you can make progress very quickly.  You can make CrossFit what you want, and you really get back what you put into it.

Read this Athlete Spotlight and more in our February 2013 Newsletter HERE

Miguel Delgado

  Miguel Delgado is an Archetype. He is The Example of a marriage between perspective and progress.  Two years ago, when Miguel first came to 310, his approach was cautious and wise.  I noticed and appreciated his willingness to listen and apply the things we were teaching.  He is a master at operating within his current boundaries, but is never satisfied with remaining there. Thus, he grew continuously; it never seemed to stop.  I’m always impressed with this approach to CrossFit or any discipline.  It’s never flashy and it might never turn heads, but after years of coaching and watching athlete after athlete wrestle with their own fitness, I can definitively say that Patient, Wise and Consistent yields the most radical, long-lasting changes (see Magdalena Ping and Sean O’Rourke). The genius of this kind of attack is the gratification of constant growth.  Side stepping large plateaus keeps an excitement and a sense of hope inside of your workouts.  It creates a pattern of success and cements a powerful confidence. 
 
One year ago, Miguel injured his back.  Honestly, I can’t remember what he was doing, but I know that it wasn’t because he was being reckless based on all aforementioned details of his character above.  Unlike most gym tweaks, this strain stuck with Miguel for a long time.  For the better part of a year, he was constantly negotiating WODs around the pain in his back.  During this time, I saw so much of Miguel’s character.  I watched him continue to come in.  I watched him become an expert in mobility.  I watched him lead by example and slowly build himself back–all the while, continuing to be a big part of the community, continuing to connect with people and teach them what he was learning.  Based on all that I saw, I was excited to have Miguel join our coaching team and continue to do what he was already doing: Lead by example.
 
If I could have Miguel in all classes, I would.  I enjoy being around him (even when he’s the Christmas Grinch), and I learn from him.  He makes our place better.  Miguel is currently coaching our Saturday 11am class.  See you there.
 
–Koach

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?

Navy Seal WOD (or Restrepo as it’s known now).  Yeah right, that is not fun…  I don’t know that I have a favorite WOD.  I definitely like the 10-minute ones better than I like the marathon WODs.  As for a skill, I guess I would have to say Oly lifts.  I’m not great at them, so I like that we are getting more touches.

2. What’s on your suck list?
#1 on the list has to be Handstand Walk.  I have about a step and a half right now.  Oly lifts are holding a strong #2 on that list and it just goes from there.  I fight back and forth with my Double Under and my Butterfly Pull-Up is shaky, too.

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
I describe my diet as not as good as it should be.  I don’t know that I can fit into a certain type of diet; I borrow from Paleo and primal.  I try to limit my grains and sugars, but I have my ups and downs with that. 

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
Ryan Peterson got a group of guys together that were interested in CrossFit, or already doing CrossFit at a regular gym, and brought us to 310.     

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
I’m not exactly sure but I think it’s somewhere around three years.  

6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
Oh, I could go on forever here.  Take your time and learn proper technique.  You might be strong enough to get that heavy weight over your head, but if you’re technique is poor you will either plateau, get injured or both.  Don’t worry so much about that RX or that awesome WOD time; just learn how these movements work and the right way to do them.  Don’t disregard mobility, and learn how to take care of your aches and pains.  There are a lot of great resources out there; just ask one of the coaches.  Also, take the strength sessions serious, log your times/numbers, and of course, have fun.

Read this athlete spotlight and more in our January 2013 Newsletter

 

Kelly Spillane

Let’s just get this out of the way:  Kelly has five kids and she looks like a Super Hero.

Two years ago, Kelly Spillane walked through our doors, and she looked like a Super Hero.  Seriously.  We had nothing to do with all those awesome muscles and hard edges.  She had been training before she came to us.  She learned to eat clean and built herself up with physical and mental strength before she ever met us.  Those things are keys to remember when assessing her story.  Kelly is an example to us all in so many ways.  Here are a few:

1.  This stuff is FUN!
I say it all the time.  We have fun doing this stuff.  If I could put that idea into a package and display it, it would be a tiny Kelly Spillane doll, swinging on the rings.  This woman wants to move!  Walking on her hands, box jumps, pistols–watch her bear crawl sometime.  She’s just playing, constantly.

2. Make Time.
You heard me say she has five kids, right?  Five tiny packages of rocket fuel that ignite at various times.  This woman DOESN’T HAVE TIME FOR CROSSFIT.  Yet, I see her more and more.  Why?  Because she loves it.  She loves CrossFit 310, she loves to move, she loves to get better.  She finds a way when there doesn’t seem to be one, and I absolutely love it!

3. Stick to it.
Kelly came in strong, but she did not know how to move in all the ways we do in CrossFit.  She has had to work very hard, maybe harder than a lot of you.  Kelly has the distinction of being the second woman at 310 to get a muscle up, but it did not come easy.  Hours of training, week after week (even when she didn’t want to) gave her that accomplishment.

Kelly’s value to 310 goes beyond the aesthetics of her muscular physique.  It supersedes her ability to move, and trumps her seemingly awesome potential.  Her value is all of that, wrapped up in her vision for this place.  That vision is so strong that we asked to her be part of our CrossFit Kids program.  Her vision is so strong that she said yes–impossibly.

I say the word Revolution a lot.  I say it tongue in cheek, yes, but you can be sure that I believe with every cell of my being, that’s exactly what this is.  This is a Revolution, and when I say it to Kelly, I know she believes it, too.

–Koach

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?

While I would like to tell you that I have a favorite WOD, honestly, I can’t remember them. What I do know is that I like to be challenged.  It is my understanding that in order to do things well, one must practice.  I am dedicated to putting in the time to improve my skill work, move more load, and breathe easier.

I have been fortunate enough to work closely with Kris to gain some knowledge and insight into this sport.  He has become a mentor and an inspiration to me.

One of my favorite things about this place is the sense of community.  We are all in it together and I am enjoying the ride.

2. What’s on your suck list?
Let me just say this, I love the concept of the “suck list.”  How can you ever improve if you have not identified where you need to improve?  So, for me, here it is: I would like to find rhythm with the rope, jump so high my head hits the clouds, walk around town on my hands, lift my toes past the bar to the ceiling, crunch my abs like you would a soda can, move a loaded barbell like I am twirling a baton.  This is my kind of fun – it is all play to me.

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
Diet is not easy.  Friends think I have a naturally high metabolism, and maybe this is true, but effort is key.  Deprive yourself of sugar for a few days and your brain will eventually stop asking for it.  Log your intake.  Make yourself accountable. Evaluate your choices.  Ask yourself, how can you manipulate your routine to eliminate times when you typically indulge.  For my hubby, it is nighttime snacking.  The cure: he found things to do in the evening that kept him out of the kitchen.

Avoid the junk. I cook most meals.  I keep it simple.  All I know is that your body runs more efficiently on clean fuel.  I eat veggies, fruit, chicken/fish and nuts daily.  Grains and sweet stuff in moderation.  I am always aware of water consumption. I sound like a broken record to my kids, “Hydrate, Hydrate, HYDRATE!”

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
Unforgettable. My brother-in-law had a 40th birthday celebration in San Francisco. He had been frequenting the Jack Lalane CrossFit gym for a few months and wondered if I wanted to give it a try.  I didn’t know what the hell I was doing, but instantly I knew I liked it.  Boot camp and traditional weight training were ok, but this was raw, this was gritty, this was fun!

It became my mission to find a box close to home.  I popped into the 310 gym and Kris gave me the grand tour.  He was like a kid in a candy shop and his passion was infectious.  How could I not partake in his enthusiasm and excitement over what he and his wife had built?

I wanted to know what he knew.

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
This is a tough one.  Let’s just say, I have been in and out for 2 years and I am just getting warmed up.

6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
Listen, every time I walk through the door, I am like a kid meeting up with his friends to run around at the park. This is my playground.  Absolute fun and pure joy.

I see this as my time, my reward for working hard. Is it mentally/physically challenging? Absolutely.  Is there a learning curve? Absolutely.  Does it require patience? Absolutely. Will you overcome physical obstacles? Absolutely.  Will you feel better? Absolutely.  Can anyone do it? Absolutely.

I like being strong.  I like being able to endure.  I like moving freely.

And the best part…the revolution has started and I am now lucky enough to share this experience with my kids in this gym.

Read this Athlete Spotlight AND MORE in our December 2012 newsletter. 

 


Tiffany “Short Tiff” Johnson

 


Capable
 
Odds are you know Tiffany Johnson.  Odds are, everyone in our gym knows her because she wears so many different hats in our gym.  Maybe you met her in class, where we all did – where she developed relationships fast because of her eagerness to play and her desire to connect to people.  Maybe you’re new and you met her first as a coach, or maybe she called or emailed you to help schedule your intro session.  Maybe you’re 7 years old and you know Tiff from our CrossFit Kid’s Revolution where she teaches you run and jump and squat (Boom!!), and to roll and flip, and to do pullups!
 
Maybe you’re beginning to understand how many hats this girl wears at CrossFit 310.
 
When I met Tiff, I was instantly excited about having her in our place.  She demonstrated the kind of athleticism that I knew would be great for our girls – challenging everyone with strength and gymnastics – and her personality seemed gracious and fun and exciting.  Time would prove that hunch right.  I sat back and enjoyed her introduction to CrossFit.  I watched her absolutely embrace the people and melt into the community.  She just felt like us, there’s no other way to put it.

GodSmack
 
What would an Athlete Spotlight be without a lesson point?  Tiff has one, that’s for sure.  Hers comes in the form of a night of dancing with her friends.  Swing Dancing.  One Crossover, Coaster Step, Jumpin’ Joe or Texas Tommy too many, and Tiff ended her night with a dislocated knee.  What an absolutely devastating event.  If it happened to me, there would be a storm of anger that would include a period of silence, lots of moping and a general air of Grump (charming, I know).  Tiff may have had the seeds of some of those things somewhere, but I didn’t see them.  

I found out about her knee from a Facebook post that seemed almost jovial on that same night. Of course that was impressive, but the thing that makes her story arc such a lesson to us is the fact that she stayed at the gym.  She came in and trained just as often as she had been before.  She continued to improve on things that she could work on, and slowly rehabilitated her knee in the process.  All the while, she was developing relationships, giving as much as she was taking, and growing constantly.  I could not be more proud of how she handled the crisis of injury.  I wish I could prescribe her perspective to everyone.  (Note: Kei, Chivas, Myth, Tina, and Miguel also are living out this magnanimous existence in our box.  Learn from them all.)
 
Tiff has become an integral part of CrossFit 310.  To me, her story begins with play, and continues with play. What a great path. 
 
You must know by now, by the grandiose language I use to describe the happenings at CrossFit 310, that I see all of this as more than just exercise.  This is a Revolution to me and Tawni.  It revolves around movement, but its center is really relationship.  Participation yields more freedom to move than most of us thought possible.  It provides accountability for nutrition, it creates a place to gather with others inside of busy lives that don’t always make room for belonging to something that matters to more than just you.
 
Tiff is a believer.  She is a partner in the Revolution.  She makes this more fun.

–Koach

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?I pretty much like everything that involves lifting heavy stuff. I love, love, love cleans, snatches, kettle bells, wall balls and recently double unders and pull ups… Oh and Toes to Bar, those are my favs!!!

 
2. What’s on your suck list?
Suck list!  Ha! Suck list! My ever-growing and changing list of things I am terrible at and dislike strongly! My #1 sucky thing is the ever-elusive Muscle Up! I swear this was created to frustrate me. I also strongly dislike running and have recently discovered I am very, very awful at abmats, so those have jumped up the list. Squat cleans and squat snatches are up there.  And running.  Did I mention I don’t like to run?!?

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
Diet is a very naughty word! Can we use lifestyle plan?  My diet sucks. I go back and forth with eating clean then not eating clean. I love food and it loves me, but for the next 6 weeks I am doing Small’s 6 Weeks to Sexy Plan, which mainly involves eating clean 6 out of 7 days of the week.  So hopefully that will evolve into every day life!  As a general rule, I try to avoid gluten and a ton of sugar, but cookies are good.  

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
Yelp is the greatest website ever! I looked for a box where the people who reviewed it talked about movement and preventing injury. I knew I had some knee issues and wanted to make sure wherever I went the coaches would look after me. Then I met Kris and Jeff for my intro and fell in love with this place that I now call home! 

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
1 year and 1 month! Woo hoo!!

6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
What advice do I have?  Ooh, I love giving advice! I have a few things:

  • First, don’t care about the RX. Care about your movement and the skill. The weights will come if the movement is right, so don’t stress about it. The best RX is the first one done with a skill you have been struggling to get (i.e., double unders).
  • Second, don’t be afraid to fail or suck. Embrace your failures and let them light that little fire inside you that makes you want to own them. Failures will make you better and will fuel your growth as long as you let them drive you!
  • Last, laugh at yourself. Seriously, sometimes you just look ridiculous and that’s okay! You’re better than you were yesterday just by coming in to the box and trying something new.

Jeff Williams

Epic
 
I see the story of Jeff Williams at CrossFit 310 like an epic Norse tale.  He’s the answer to the question, “What if a Viking stumbled into a CrossFit Gym.”  Jeff’s story is a sweeping tale about strength and humility, and the chasm of experience that lies in between the two.
 
If I’m not mistaken, I think Jeff accidentally came to us. I think he was actually looking for another CrossFit. Whatever way it happened, he came in, went through the baseline workout, threw up in his bush for the first time, and was converted instantly.  On that day, Jeff began his ascent–his slow patient climb towards an understanding of movement, towards the top of the boards and towards coaching others to do the same.
 
Everything is big with Jeff. Big lifts, big voice, big laugh, big heart.  When I say big heart, most people have witnessed it, but I’ll bet they don’t really understand it. When Jeff came in, he was strong of course, but he couldn’t run down to the wall and back without offering his breakfast to the bush. He’s big now, but he was bigger then.  Imagine the courage it takes to come back over and over, knowing there are going to be runs, and box jumps and pullups–and knowing that everyone around you isn’t hauling a 6’4″, 350lb frame around.
 
Seriously, this is a little man’s sport.  It takes an enormous amount of courage to pursue a dream that is fundamentally at odds with your body type. Most people don’t have the guts for that. 

Jeff Williams is my good friend. We have spent many hours together talking theology and literature and quoting copious amounts of “The Big Lebowski” back and forth. And of course, we are always discussing CrossFit theory, application, and future. 

If you watch closely, you’ll see that this big Viking has a quiet, tender side to his personality. He’s got a big heart for our family.  You can see it easiest when he takes time to show someone something he’s learned. I saw it so often that I invited him to go through our coaching program.  After collecting three different CrossFit certifications, and just this month completing our Teach to Teach Program, Jeff officially became a staff coach at CrossFit 310. 
 
Jeff is a model for growth.  He’s a living parable–what to do sometimes, and what not to do sometimes.  Both ways he’s valuable to us.  Just don’t forget: “This isn’t Nam, Jeff. It’s CrossFit. There are rules.” 

–Koach

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?

Olympic lifting, Grace, Isabel, anything short, intense and with a barbell.  

2. What’s on your suck list?
List? I would say it’s more of a Suck Book!  First and foremost: my diet – it needs some work, then running, then most bodyweight movements.  The list goes on, but I don’t want to bore people.

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
As I said before, my diet is #1 on my Suck List.  I would say I’m 50% primal, 50% of the time. One thing I do know is that diet is everything. If I put 1/2 as much energy and dedication into my diet as I do my training, I would be much better off.  

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
While at work one day, I was talking to a Manhattan Beach Police Officer who told me she did CrossFit. I was the classic gym buff who said, “Yeah whatever.”  After about 2 months of going back and forth, I agreed to go to a class.  The only problem was that she went to CFLA, and I told her I was not driving that far to workout. So when I got home, I typed CrossFit into Google Maps. 310 was my 3rd stop.  I did my intro, it took me about 10 minutes, and I was outside dry heaving for about 5 minutes after that.  Then I told Kris to sign me up! 

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
I’m not sure of the exact date, but it’s been a little over 2 years.  

6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
Trust the room and the coaches. We’re all here to get better.  Don’t worry about where you start.  Ask questions.  We are a gym full of leaders and are willing to help.

CLICK HERE to read this spotlight AND MORE in our October 2012 Newsletter!

 

Paul Dunay

 

If you know Paul Dunay, then you probably are already aware of what a great impact he’s had on our place. Paul is a unique combination of physical gifts and personality that can’t help but be recognized. The Dunays (Paul is married to the lovely Jen Dunay) are like a decadent dessert of personality and humor. They are a total delight to me, and I love to see them in the gym.
 
The Gifts:
One of the best things about Paul is marveling at his physical gifts–and more specifically, how those gifts have been cultivated. If you didn’t know, Paul can run like the wind.  He’s got, what we call in CrossFit circles, a great Engine.  And if you didn’t know, he’s got a near heroic level of grip strength. Both of these Super-Gifts were grown and cultivated as he grew his dog-walking business.  Just like Samson, or Conan, building their strength slowly over time.  Imagine Paul wrangling and wrestling five dogs on leashes, in each hand, pulling in all directions, and dragging him through the hills all day.  Paul’s strength was born from function.
 
The Blood:
Paul has the record for blood spilled in our Gym.  I really can’t tell sometimes if he’s courageous, reckless, or just clumsy, but what can’t be denied is his effort. Paul is up for playing hard all the time.
 
The Skill:
This is where I am happy to report that Paul needs work to capitalize on his gifts. As Paul continues to mature his skills, he becomes a greater threat on the whiteboard. I watch his numbers increase week by week.  He never seems impatient. He remains consistent, and gives a lot of effort. These things are a magical combination in a CrossFit box.
 
Paul has a ton of potential with CrossFit, you can be sure of that.  But, none of that matters to me ultimately. I enjoy him in classes. I enjoy WODing with him, and I enjoy hanging out with him.  Do yourself a favor and get into a conversation with the Dunays. Enjoy what they bring to the box.  

–Koach

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?

My favorite WOD so far would have to be the Filthy 50. Maybe that’s cliché at this point, but it was the first one I did and I love the grueling effect produced. I quickly became partial to the “chipper” style WODs. I never knew anything like that existed. My favorite skills however, if you want to call them that, have long been the things that are kind of mindless with limited technique like running, rowing, burpees, box jumps, or farmer carries. Things like the Olympic bar work were a little daunting at first.

2. What’s on your suck list?
THRUSTERS… and hamstring mobility. For some reason my wrists suffer big time during Thrusters. The wraps have helped some; I guess it has to do with mobility in my forearm. Also, on the list would have to be double unders. Even though I recently acquired a decent little number, like 30 PR fresh, it’s mind boggling to me to be able to keep it up while fatigued during a WOD. It’s very different for me when tired. The thought of 100+ double unders mid-WOD seems impossible.

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
I’m not completely familiar with all the buzzwords, but this has been a slow progression for the year or so that I’ve been around. I didn’t get serious about even limiting my sugar and grain intake until about six months ago. This was also the time when I upped my WOD schedule from about 2 or 3 times a week to 3 or 5 sometimes. I don’t know if I noticed much of a change in my energy levels, but I did see more progress in muscle mass and definition. Sugar is a big time vice so it’s been challenging to not have that whole “reward” complex when it comes to food. Now I try to not to have any grain or processed sugars until later in the weekend. I know it’s progress not perfection. I am also trying to limit my dairy intake,  since I love cheese on anything and all types of yogurt.

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
I was working in the building and noticed the signage in the parking lot. I knew nothing about it. I told my wife Jen about it, and she started to rave about how fun it is and how much I would like it. My first real exposure was at a regional competition in Long Beach, as a spectator of course, where I knew I had to become a part of this thing.

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
It’s been a little over a year. I can’t believe it’s already been that long, but I have to remember how much weaker I was on arrival. Don’t want to let the expectations burn me out! It’s tough when you’re both your biggest fan and your biggest critic.

6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
Start out light on the weights. I almost let my ego get the better of me when seeing guys (or girls) physically smaller in stature throwing up a heavy load and thinking “I got it,” to then only do it improperly by muscling it up with no technique and risking injury. Learn it right before chasing that Rx. The more inquisitive I got about CrossFit, the more I needed to show up to learn how to do things properly. I like the saying that “88% of life is showing up!” I was determined to learn how to use my hips instead of ripping from the top with my arms, still a work in progress. Early on I went home sore in different areas because I didn’t how to engage the right ones. Also it was important for me to not try to change too much at once when it comes to diet and exercise. Little steps are more practical for someone like me. I have to remind myself that I can’t get caught up in comparing my body’s abilities to other people’s; it usually doesn’t work that way. I started to get obsessive with WOD times and realized I may have been compromising form; slow and steady wins the race should be a motto for me instead of going off the Richter scale right out the gate.

CLICK HERE to read this spotlight and more in our September 2012 Newsletter

Helen Medina

So this is the story.
 
Long ago, on a day that no one can quite remember specifically, I am standing in front of one of the whiteboards.  A modest size class is gathered and listening to my Braveheart speech before class starts.  As always I am sure that lives will be changed and one or two people may start crying because of the power of my opening remarks in class.  But I digress…
 
My intent that day was to communicate that there is room for everyone who’s willing to actively participate in our culture, despite their motivation.  Some people want to take over the fitness world and emerge as a force to be reckoned with in CrossFit competitions, and others just want to feel healthier and look better naked.  Fine; there is room in our place for both because of these principles:
1. Currency in our gym is hard work and courage to try.
As a result…
2. Anyone can lead.
 
My speech is aimed towards those who might be on the fringe of the whiteboards.  At the moment, they might not be leading the boards, but I wanted to let them know that despite their reason for being in class, the greatest amount of change, and honestly the greatest amount of fun, comes with a drive to get a little better every day.  In my head, I will hammer this point home with a great example from our community: Helen Medina.  “Helen”, I say, “Will probably never compete–“
 
Now, this is the point at which the story turns.  It’s at this point that it becomes folklore at 310.  This is definitely where I believe Helen stopped listening, but also where my assumption would collide with Helen’s amazingly stubborn will, and as a result would alter both of us forever.
 
In defense of my assumption:
Helen came to our box long, long ago.  She was honestly one of the first people to grace our doorstep.  Helen had never heard of CrossFit.  She was getting married in 8 months and had intentionally bought a dress she could not fit into.  I tell her outright that is not the best plan I’ve heard.  She ignores me.
Imagine a 9:15am class comprised of only Magdalena and Helen.
Imagine Helen getting stronger and more fit.  Slowly.
Imagine my shock when she showed me what she was eating.
Imagine the evolution of her 15-20lb drop over the 8 months, a continual and patient increase in fitness, the addition of her fiancé Sean into our mix, and the growth of our friendship.
Imagine Helen fitting into that dress and the beautiful wedding they have.
At no time does she stop improving.  At no time does she indicate that she has an interest in competition.  
I am deceived by her patience.  
To this day, I do not know if she harbored a desire to compete all along, or if it was born inside of her the moment she heard my assumption.  Either way, one thing is for sure.  The desire to compete ignited and it rose like a phoenix inside her.
 
Helen is absolutely a joy to me in the gym.  Every time she comes in, I am genuinely thankful to see her.  She is supportive, encouraging, patient, and always loving with me.  I admire her for the consistency of those traits, as much as I admire the consistency of her physical growth.  I love my friendship with her and Sean.
 
Helen participated in her first CrossFit competition last week.  I defend the sentiments of my speech–that everyone should be like Helen–but, I recognize that my assumption was erroneous.  And I love it.

–Koach

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?

I would have to say that my favorite WOD is Filthy Fifty. Not sure exactly why, but if I see it up as the WOD for the day I’ll try to come in even if its my day off. Perhaps its because each time I do it I see improvements. For almost two years I didn’t have a double under so, no matter how fast I went I couldn’t complete it as RX, but now that I do have my double under I can’t wait to try it again.

2. What’s on your suck list?
Well, I’ve been working a lot on trying to get my HSPU and after that I would like to work on a Muscle Up, so those two are for sure on my suck list…among many others.  

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc.)
About 75-80% Primal. I try to eat well, but I really enjoy sweets and pizza so I just try to limit how often I eat them.

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
I heard about 310 from my husband, Sean.  He saw someone at a Starbucks wearing a CF310 t-shirt and I was interested in trying CrossFit out, so I sent Kris an email and that’s how it all started for me.

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
A little over 2 years, I started in March of 2010.

6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
Be consistent and patient. Personally, I found that by being really consistent in coming to class and working on skills, it allowed me to grow and get stronger which makes WODs a lot more fun. I’ve also needed to be really patient.  As I mentioned earlier it took me almost two years to get my double under, but it finally happened. In that same way I know that with time and hard work I can improve on all other skills.  After all, I did pass out during my intro session with Kris and I feel like I have come a long way since that first day. I’m excited to continue improving.

CLICK HERE to read this spotlight and more in our August 2012 Newsletter

 

Reiley Bender

The Example
There are few things as exciting to me as watching someone achieve something they thought they could never do, or become something they were told they would never be, or reclaim something they once were, and thought they had lost forever.  Those three ideas are themes inside of CrossFit 310.  Whether you know it or not, the energy from those ideas fuels classes.  It is in those things that our teaching is rooted.  When I talk with people about what they’re looking for at CrossFit 310, it is these things that empower me to look someone dead in the eye and tell them “Change is possible.  It’s hard, but we can do this.”  Reiley Bender is one of the reasons I know this.
 
Squats are hard for Reiley.  Really Hard.  No, seriously.  You think they were hard for you to get, but almost no one has had to work as hard (unless your name is Elliot, Carrie or Brook).  🙂  At one point Reiley came up to me and asked, “Will I ever be able to do this?”  I looked her dead in the eye and said “Change is possible.  It’s hard, but we can do this.”  The reason I knew this was because it took me a year and a half to learn to squat–seriously.  When I look at Reiley now, and watch her sit into a back squat with no target, it’s hard for me not to start cheering.  When I look at her in the base of an Overhead Squat, all of my beliefs surrounding the potential for human movement are affirmed.  Reiley is The Example, and all of that is awesome, but there’s more.
 
Lady Bender.  This girl is one-part Wit and two-parts Sassy, with a scoop of No-Nonsense, topped with a Tender Heart.  I love this girl.  She is not only an example of how to progress with movement, she is also an example of how to approach the culture of CrossFit 310.  If you can’t tell already, we are eager to have fun and laugh.  We want to work hard and play hard, but not take ourselves too seriously.  Reiley is all of that.  Reiley is a willing leader in classes.  She is married to Scott but has her own identity, her own path, and her own friends in the gym.  This makes our place stronger, and we love her for it.
 
I will personally miss the Benders so much at CrossFit 310, but I am thankful for their influence on our place for a time.  I cannot wait to watch the Bender Clan grow with the arrival of Baby Bender.  We love you guys. 

–Koach

*I’m going to answer these questions as if it was December 2011 and I wasn’t 7.5 months pregnant.  🙂

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?

I don’t really have a favorite WOD because I can’t keep track of them…  The only one I know is Karen (150 wall balls for time), and that’s because I nearly died completing it. But my favorite skills (aka, the skills that don’t make me want to cry) are: running, followed by kettlebell swings and any lift that doesn’t involve a squat. These are my faves because I’m a fairly decent runner, I can swing a kettlebell pretty well, and I like learning the lifts. I didn’t say I was terribly good at them, but I like learning them.  A few moves that have grown on me simply because, when I started CrossFit I either couldn’t do them at all or was just awful at them, are: double unders, dead lifts, wall balls, and back squats. In my case, practice hasn’t made perfect, but it sure has made improvements.

2. What’s on your suck list?
What’s on your suck list? I’m going to take this question to mean, “what have I made the least improvements on and therefore dislike in my 2 years of CrossFitting,” because otherwise everything except maybe running would be on my suck list. So, pull-ups, push-ups, burpees, air squats and overhead squats are on my suck list (and I’m sure I’m leaving out a few). Although I’ve come a LONG way with my pull-ups, push-ups and especially my squat since I started, there’s still much room for improvement. I will, however, never like burpees. Never. Ever.

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)
80% Paleo, 20% realistic. I’m pretty darn good on the weekdays and I try my best on the weekends. I say 20% realistic because if I’m at a party or out to dinner with friends, you better believe I’m having a glass (or two) of wine, and it would be rude to not try one of Helen’s amazing cupcakes, and I want to meet the person who can order the fish or a salad every time they go to an Italian restaurant. That said, I definitely feel the effects of having even a little sugar or wheat (they zap my energy and increase my allergies), which actually makes it easier to eat more strict. Eating clean also really helps my energy level and performance in my workouts. 

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
My husband (Scott) saw an ad in the South Bay Monthly. He was burnt out of his regular gym routine so he went to check it out. It took him 3 weeks of convincing, but I finally broke down and came. And I’ve never looked back.

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
Two years in July. (I can’t believe it’s already been two years!)

6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
Oh man…  I could go on and on. But to try and keep it brief, I’d say first and foremost: Don’t let yourself be intimidated. When we’re intimidated, we tend to make excuses for ourselves as to why we can’t or shouldn’t do something. Don’t let that happen. Yes, the workouts are tough, and yes, you’re going to have to work hard, especially if you’re just starting out, but–and this brings me to my second point–YOU CAN DO IT. I don’t care what your athletic background is or what shape you’re in, you can do it. That may sound like a huge cliché, but it’s true, and I’m living proof of it. I tell anyone who will listen how much CrossFit and the people in this gym have changed my life. In the past two years, I’ve pushed myself to limits that I didn’t think I was capable of, and it’s all because of the fantastic motivation that this gym provides. Finally, get yourself to the gym on a regular basis – that’s the only way you’ll start seeing results. Once you’re here, let the workouts, amazing coaches, and pure energy of the gym take it from there. Don’t be intimidated. You CAN do it – there’s no reason why you can’t. Get yourself to class and let CrossFit do the rest. That’s my two cents. 
 

Scott Bender

Value
What Scott Bender brings to a community would be hard to quantify, but impossible to deny.  From my standpoint there was infinite value in watching Scott’s growth inside of our place.  Initially, he seemed to just be trying to wrap his mind around everything CrossFit.  Over time, his desire to excel with us prompted the question, “What should I be doing outside of this place to get better in here?”  “Strength,” I said (as I say to most everyone).   Six months later, Scott had been diligently working on his strength and climbing to the top of the whiteboards everyday.  A couple of months later he shed his 24-Hour Fitness status and bumped up to Unlimited with us.  And he continues to grow.  He affixes himself in the community and we all get to know Bender.  We make him better; he makes us better.

Although I use the paragraph above to teach athletes about progress at CrossFit 310, Scott’s value to our gym, and to me personally, supersedes the whiteboards.  In my mind, the perfect expression of CrossFit is having the desire and ability to work out crazy hard with people, and yet not take yourself or CrossFit too seriously.  That may sound like CrossFit heresy to some of you, but mark my words: the most growth in CrossFit will come from a constant pursuit of excellence with your friends, and a lot of laughter on the way.  Scott Bender is part of that avenue for me.

If you don’t know, Scott and Reiley are moving to Denver, CO in July.  I will be losing a good athlete and a potentially great coach.  Most of all, I will lose out on a buddy to WOD with in the afternoons, tons of laughter in between, and the chance to watch his family grow with ours.

We love you guys.

–Koach

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?

That would have to be any WOD with a variety of movements.  I get bored doing 150 wall balls or seven minutes of burpees.  When I see bodyweight movements (pullups/pushups/squats) in a WOD, I breathe a sigh of relief.

2. What’s on your suck list?
I don’t really have a suck list.  Having conquered all things CrossFit last year, I just like to see if I can improve upon perfection.  I guess that would be on my suck list: “improving upon perfection.”  Not as easy as it sounds, trust me.  That said, fellow CrossFitters would probably say that I have issues with going overhead.  My shoulder mobility has come a long way, but still gives me problems locking out overhead, they might say.  Also, my wind comes and goes.  As of late, my wind has taken a sabbatical, but I hope to reunite with it soon.

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)
My diet is 100% Paleo…when I’m eating Paleo.  I kicked dairy and bread about a year and a half ago and never looked back.  Before that, I pretty much lived off of cereal and foot-long Subway sandwiches.  I read a bunch of Robb Wolf and Gary Taubes stuff and drank the Paleo Kool-Aid.  Anyone thinking about doing it, should.  It’s not the easiest thing to do, especially when you have an affinity for beer and Los Muchachos burritos like I do, but if you can commit, the benefits are well worth it.

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
South Bay Monthly.  Saw an advertisement for 3 free sessions and thought, “I like free stuff.”  Went in super skeptical because I was already entrenched in my mind-numbing 24-Hour Fitness routine on M/W/F and jogging T/TH.  Did the baseline, checked-out a class a day or two later, and was sold.

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
Two years, but feels like eight.

6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
Pace yourself.  Fitness is a long-term project.  The results are coming.  They come slow but they last a long time.  Also, ask for help.  I had never done 90% of the movements before starting CrossFit.  The coaches are there to help, your fellow CrossFitters are there to help.  Third, keep an open mind and trust the process.  As a new CrossFitter, the workouts are different than what you are used to.  This is a good thing.  Finally, don’t forget to sign in and clean up your sludge.

CLICK HERE to read these spotlights and more in our July 2012 Newsletter. 

Karen Wickline


Karen Wickline’s influence on CrossFit 310 is difficult to encapsulate. If I were to put it into one word, it would be Hope.  Karen brings a message of Hope in all aspects of her life.  Give her five minutes sometime and she’ll tell you where that comes from.  In the gym, that message of hope most frequently comes in the form of me pointing Karen out.  “That woman thought she’d never run again,” I say on many occasions, “now she can run a mile in the middle of a grueling WOD”.  Seriously, so many people come through our doors, and cannot fathom what is possible for them.  “I’ve always had a weak upper body,” someone might say hopelessly.  I point across the room and say, “you know that woman you met earlier, Karen?  She’s in her 60’s and has an awesome strict pushup.  We can teach you,” I say this with absolute conviction and complete confidence.  If you train like Karen.  If you take advantage of the coaching.  If you discipline yourself with consistency and temperance.  If you are courageous, but not reckless,  you will grow like Karen grows–consistently and safely.

On a personal level, I can say without any doubt in my head that God has sent Karen into my life, to give me hope on so many days.  On more than one occasion, she has selflessly bypassed her workout to spend some time talking and praying for me.  What’s more, she is sincerely interested in the individuals that make up CrossFit 310.  She’s eager to participate in lives.  She’s a mentor.  She’s an encourager.  She loves to laugh and is fearless in her pursuit of more than just a bunch of workout partners.  She reminds me of my Mom, and I love her.

My own hope is that I would be more like her.  Thank you Karen Wickline.
–Koach
1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?

I really had to think about this! I used to hate squats, but now I react, “I can do this!” when I see squats on the board in the WOD. I like sit-ups too.

2. What’s on your suck list?
Without a doubt, running! But I had to think a little about that too, because when I first started CrossFit, my knee joints hurt.  I thought because of my age, I could never do running again. But Kris said that wasn’t true and I am happy to say, he was right! With proper warm up, foam rolling, stretching and time, I no longer have knee pain when running.  That’s been “true” for over a year now.  Yay! But running is not my most accomplished skill and I hate having people pass me all the time, which they do.  🙁  I say “hi” as they pass.  Lol.  Push-ups used to be on my suck, too. But now I can do men’s push-ups for some of the WODs. (Wednesday’s WOD I was able to do all men’s push ups – happy me!)  I like wall balls now too, which was at the top of my suck list a year and a half ago.  Burpees suck, but that’s getting better too, thanks to Max’s instruction.  🙂

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)
My diet is gluten, and dairy free. I also food combine, per the Dr. Hays diet. I don’t mix certain foods together at the same meal.  Protein and carbs are never eaten together. Fruit is eaten separate from all other food groups. It is nearly impossible to gain weight, so I eat about 3000 calories a day, including protein shakes, to keep the muscle on. I feel great on this diet!

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
I was weight training at Mitchell Fitness with Dr. Liz Cannan (personal trainer and personal friend) before she moved out of state. Koach Kris was training clients there also. Since I was totally bored with traditional training, Liz recommended I train with Kris Germain. Liz had already been watching Kris train his clients, and liked and began incorporating the “CrossFit” moves he was using at Mitchell Fitness for my work-outs! (Kris has an intensity and joy in training that makes you want to do exercise.) It was totally a God thing. I am so blessed with much better health and overall fitness. And I am never bored at CrossFit! Yay, again!!

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
2+ years now! Working on 3 years.  I love it.  This stuff is addictive for the person looking for results.

6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
Don’t measure yourself by others’ levels of fitness! Start where you are and accept it. As I said, I couldn’t run when I started. But now I can! I also couldn’t do a handstand. But now I can! I measure my success by what I have accomplished since I began and I am amazed and humbled by it all. (Thanks GOD!) I don’t take it for granted that a worthy coach, who understands and constantly teaches techniques that strengthen and protect the body, is an important component. (Thanks Kris, Max, Brit, Tiff, Jeff!!) CrossFit 310 has the tools for any level trainee. Just suit up and show up, and don’t give up! If a mature woman, 62 years old in two weeks, can get results, so can you!

The supervision for each CrossFit 310 class and the amazingly positive attitude of all those training together, plus the constant words of encouragement (“well done,” “almost there,” “don’t stop,” “you can do this”), all helps to make the daily/weekly experience rewarding and, yeah, dare I say it, “FUN.”

CLICK HERE to read this spotlight and more in our June 2012 Newsletter

 

Rey Lara


Rey Lara loves CrossFit.

You hear that, and you say to yourself, “Yeah, duh, we all love CrossFit”.  But you might not understand.  You might see Rey as a Coach and one of our leaders in class.  You may be new to our community and think that he was always near the top of our leader boards, that he could always work out 5-6 days a week, and that he always knew how to move that well.  If that’s the case, then you don’t understand where he’s come from.   How much growth he’s achieved.  That he loved CrossFit and had to learn how to do it.

I don’t know where he got it, or how long ago it started, but Rey has never lacked anything in the Effort Department.  Way back when he was just beginning in our place, when he was at least 20-25lbs heavier, before mobility and nutrition and new movement patterns, Rey still had a big heart.  It is my favorite thing about him — his eagerness to give his best every time.  His unwillingness to be satisfied with Effort alone is what separates Rey from most people.  For Rey to be as good as he is now, and to keep getting better, he needed to be a ninja with mobility — which he absolutely became.  He needed to understand movement mechanics–which he is constantly pursuing.  And he needed to focus on some of his weaknesses — many of which he has totally overcome.

Rey has fun with CrossFit, and he loves our place.  He is committed to making this place better for everyone.  He sincerely cares about the people he coaches, and he’s always looking to invest in helping someone.  He makes CrossFit more fun for me.

I am so thankful for Rey and the entire Lara family.  They make us better.  Whether you know it or not, you have more fun because of them, too.

–Koach

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?
My favorite WODs are the grueling hero WODs or the “Navy Seal” WOD. I like the fact that they push you beyond your physical limits and you must rely on mental toughness to push through. I also like anything with Kettlebell Swings, Double Unders or Barbell work.

2. What’s on your suck list?
My suck list is always growing. Some movements that are on the top are: Handstand Pushups, Pistols, Ring Dips, Rope Climbs and Squat Cleans.

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)
My diet is pretty much a little bit of everything in moderation. This is probably my suck list #1, for sure. I was Paleo for a while and still try to stick to it as much as I can. It definitely shows in my performance some days.

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
I heard about 310 from Ryan Peterson. I was following US CrossFit at work, which gave me a base to go off of.  Then Ryan introduced 310 to me and a couple of guys from work, and we have been hooked ever since.

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
I have been doing CrossFit for about a year and a half, and feel as if I’m just getting into the groove of things.

6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
My advice to new people is to be open-minded and not afraid or embarrassed to scale things down. If you want to get better at something, practice a little every time you step into the box. And lastly, do mobility because it will help you get into better positions, which in return will lead to stronger gains.

CLICK HERE to see this spotlight and more in our May 2012 Newsletter

Max Delgado



I was introduced to Max via the Chivas Fujimoto/Lynzee Richmond connection.  Like Chivas, Max came in as an accomplished athlete.  He had been training with CrossFit, and already had a good physical base, mental understanding, and appreciation for CrossFit.  What stuck out the most to me, was Max’s instant appreciation for what CF310 is philosophically trying to do with the CrossFit Discipline.  Like every one of our Athlete Spotlights, Max is constantly trying to better himself.  From day one, he was focused not only on going fast and lifting heavy, but primarily with executing the movements correctly.  (As I write this, it strikes me that this is the most common trait with our leaders on the whiteboards.)   If you were to look at the whiteboards over the last year, you would see a slow, steady climb to the top.  His discipline-produced technique has finally caught up with his athletic ability.  The great news is, he hasn’t even scratched the surface yet.  He can get much stronger.  His technique will continue to get better.  His times can get faster, which means he can have more fun.

Max is a thoughtful and patient guy.  I know this because of his ascent in our place, and more recently because we’ve spent time together in our Teach To Teach Program.  His focus and desire to get better as a Coach has rivaled his climb on the whiteboards.  And despite all of these awesome qualities and accomplishments that I’ve listed here, my favorite new insight into Max is his covert Sense of Humor.  Patient, thoughtful, and a little ridiculous. 

If you’re new, keep your eye on Max and emulate his climb.  If you’ve been here for a while, watch your back; he’s still getting better. –Koach

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?
My favorite WODs are the heart-in-your-throat type of WODs like Fran, Filthy Fifty, or anything with running and body weight exercises in it. Although, the strength WODs are becoming fun since I have been able to do many of them RX’d now and chase the big guys’ numbers.

2. What’s on your suck list?
My suck list is pretty much everything. I look at the suck list as a technical improvement list. We are never going to perfect everything and become all-knowing inside of CrossFit.  Our overall success and growth will come with continued work on our technique. But if I had to pick one, I would say double unders.

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)
I would describe my diet as paleo/clean. I still allow some cheat meals once or twice a week, but I make sure I work hard in the box so I can reward myself sometimes. Also, I gave up soda almost a year ago and have never looked back.

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
 I heard about CrossFit 310 from Mr. Chivas Fujimoto, aka Fuji, aka Kristan Clever.

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
I have been doing CrossFit for about 2 years now. I have been at 310 for 14 months, and before that I was CrossFitting with Chivas, Lynzee, Dr. M, Wes (Beibs), and our friends Diane and Daniel Wu from Code 3 at 24 Hour Fitness.

6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
I would advise any new person coming in to have an open mind and not be scared of the movements. I would let them know that everything is scalable and can be changed to fit their level. And finally, to come in with a positive attitude. I wake up every day telling myself that attitude determines altitude.  It sounds cheesy, but if you have the right attitude, there is no limit to how much you can grow inside and outside of CrossFit.

CLICK HERE to see this spotlight and more in our April 2012 Newslettter

Cammy Atwater

Cammy Atwater has been an absolute joy to watch for the past three months.  The scene started with an intro session that ended with the evacuation of a meal… yup… and plays through a slow, but steady beginning in classes.  Weeks pass and Cammy comes to classes consistently.  She grows exactly the way we advertise it at the beginning.  She does what she can in each class, and looks to get a little better each time.  She moves with intention.  She shows up consistently.  The threat of losing a meal at the box gets pushed farther and farther back.  She shows up consistently.  She starts to move differently.

Enter the LiveFit 310 challenge.

Nobody knew besides Cammy, but she had been drinking a perfect cocktail of Former Frustration, mixed with New Discipline and a dash of both Preparation and Opportunity.  By the time we handed her a LiveFit 310 score sheet, she was resolute.  She was prepared mentally, and ready to attack.  You can’t imagine how much fun it is as a coach to get surprised like this.  Only Cammy knew it was time.

Cammy edged out Jason Tank (who’s like the Terminator of discipline when he sets his mind to something) by a point and a half in the challenge.  She has encouraged so many people with her before and after pics and what can be done in 30 days.  Best of all (for me), she’s getting stronger and looks like she’s having more and more fun when she’s running around.  If you haven’t met Cammy, do yourself a favor and ask her how she grew inside of our place.  Then sit back and enjoy the show as it continues.  I’m excited to see what’s next for her.
–Koach

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?
Haha! I’m not sure because everything is so hard.  But if I had to pick one thing, then maybe running because that is what I can do best out of everything and catch my breath while I jog.

2. What’s on your suck list?
I’m horrible at pull ups and pushups and only hope I can do one pull up with in a year at CrossFit.

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)
The diet was the hardest thing I have ever done. I am a sugar-holic. Without the support at home from my boyfriend and CrossFit, I never would have finished CrossFit LiveFit. This was the hardest thing I have ever done, but seeing results only pushes me harder.

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
I heard about CrossFit from Brook. I would see her posts on Facebook. I wanted to know more about it and what she was doing.

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
I have been doing CrossFit since December, and I wish to continue.

6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
With new peeps coming in, I would say stay with it. Kris guides you to the perfect form, and with that you will succeed in the RX weight with time. Push yourself and try to catch people that are ahead of you. It’s fun and it pushes your body even more. This whole experience has been so awesome, watching my body change and get stronger. With 25 more pounds to go, I am more determined than ever. Thank You!!!!!

CLICK HERE to see this spotlight and more in the March 2012 Newsletter 

 

Brook Epperson

What an honor to introduce Brook’s profile, specifically at this time.  For those of you who don’t know, Brook is my sister-in-law.  She’s family.

Brook has been CrossFitting with Tawni and I since we were over at Trent Mitchell’s place in Torrance (The Mitchell Fitness Mafia includes Tawni, Jenny, Liz, and David Teichman).  Brook is one of the most active people I know–athletically and socially.  It is very tough for her to sit still.  Consequently her time is split between many different focuses.  I need to be clear when I say this is not a bad thing.  I love a well-rounded athletic and social life, but when something different happens inside of a few people – when they drink the kool-aid, or catch the bug, or however you want to describe it – it’s a fun thing to witness.

About four or five months ago something changed in Brook’s approach to CrossFit 310.  Working out changed for her.  It became that thing that many of us have experienced.  It became a game for her.  And Brook is good at playing games.  She is tenaciously competitive, she has a strong mind, and she can endure a lot of uncomfortable. (It’s an Epperson trait!)  All of these things make her a good CrossFitter, but it’s other things that inspire me when I watch her.  I love to watch her connect to people.  I love the joy she gets when she’s part of someone else’s CrossFit quest.  I love her new approach to mobility and the pursuit of her weaknesses.  I love to watch her find joy in nearly every corner and moment of the box.  That girl cannot wait to get to her workout.

Let me make it clear again, that I do not need that to happen with everyone.  I also don’t need to have Brook feel this way forever.  But you can imagine, as the guy who owns this place, how much fun it is to watch this season of her life.  I’m glad to be part of it.  I feel lucky to have family inside of my CrossFit Family.  And I’m glad she loves me enough to endure and forgive me being tough on her (No Rep!!).

Love you, Brook.
–Koach

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?
Favorite WOD: Grace.  Favorite Skills: Clean and Jerks and handstand walks. I like them because I am better at them then other skills. Once I was able to finally get my hip thruster in the cleans it became a much easier skill for me. I obviously have a lot of work to do, but I love it.

2. What’s on your suck list?
Everything . I have a tremendous disadvantage of immobility. I have always had tight hamstrings and hip flexors my whole life. As a matter of fact, just 4 years ago I tore my IT band, TFL and gluteus medius in a middle of a soccer game and was in extreme pain and out of sports for 5 months. So, it has been an everyday battle to stretch and work on mobility. I have to tell you though, because of CrossFit, I am the most mobile I have ever been. But that being said, anything with a squat below parallel or anything that includes weight overhead into squats, such as OHS, are on the very top of my suck list. But I do try and work on it everyday! Also, pull-ups have been tough for me. I am heavier than people think, so it is a lot of weight to throw around on the bar. I officially have my strict pullup, and am very close to kipping in fluid movements soon. I can kip one at a time for up to 30 (which I did in the OC qualifier WOD), but it is a challenge everyday.  I will get there, though! I love conquering challenges and that is a large part of why I love this stuff!

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)
I try to eat clean 80% of the time. The 80% clean is both Paleo and Zone. I don’t do well with complete restriction on anything. I also have issues with portion control at times. I have to tell you, though, throughout the year when I have eaten clean, it directly correlates with my great workouts.  I can always tell if I eat clean when powering through my workouts. It is amazing how much what you eat effects your workout.

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
Well, Kris is my brother-in-law, so I have known about CrossFit 310 before it ever opened. I used to train with one of Kris’ best friends. Once he moved, I started working out with Kris at Trent Mitchell’s gym. So, we started doing CrossFit stuff about 2 years ago.

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?

I would say 2 years. However, because I play beach volleyball, basketball and soccer; I only saw it as an additional workout twice a week. It wasn’t until I saw Sarah Money in a team competition and went to the CrossFit Games that I decided I wanted to compete at some point. So, it was in August when I started coming 5 days a week and immediately saw huge gains. I told Kris in August I was ready to be serious. So, even though I have a lot of work to do, I have come a long way in a few months.

6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
I would say take each day and workout one at a time. It gives me warm butterflies when I see people do things they never thought they could. And, the support each one of us gives to one another to complete each workout. I would also say that if it is at all possible try different classes. I used to only do 6 am for over a year (of which I love everybody in that class); however, I didn’t know a lot of the other people because of this. So, I consciously made an effort to meet others and get to know more people in our gym. I am glad I did that! I love everyone at our gym, we have an unbelievably awesome group of people! If there is someone I don’t know, I immediately introduce myself and try and make them feel comfortable. And I also want to say how much CrossFit has changed my life. The CrossFit family are my second family. I love them very much and they have become my best and greatest friends. The love and support this gym gives me is something I have never experienced before. It also gives me the confidence and strength to do anything in my personal and professional life too. I started my own business this past year, and a large part of that was because of the confidence that CrossFit has given me. I also ran a trail marathon with other fellow CrossFitters: Graham, Brittny and Matt. This I did with little training outside of CrossFit. I knew going into the marathon I would do well thanks to CrossFit. It is the greatest thing that has happened to me in many years. I am blessed and honored to be a part of this gym and family! I love you all!

CLICK HERE to see this spotlight and more in the February 2012 Newsletter

 

Sean O’Rourke


Number One.

When your friends give you “Number One” as your CrossFit nickname, you can go a couple of different ways with it.  You can laugh it off and stay humble (which Sean did).  You can think you’re better than you really are (which Sean didn’t do).  And you can make it true…which Sean is doing.

Three things stick out the most when I consider Sean’s rise inside of our box.  The first is his inability to do so many of the things we assume he was born being good at.  He will be the first one to tell you that he needed some major work on everything from squat work, to double unders, to muscleups, to even standing on his hands–let alone staying upside down to perform handstand pushups.  To Sean’s great credit, his suck list continues to shrink.  He is systematically going through his CrossFit toolbox and addressing things he knows he needs to improve (see interview below).

The other thing that really stands out with Sean is the manner in which he leads.  He is not a verbose leader.  He’s not the guy who commands the room with a dynamic presence when he walks in.  On the contrary, sometimes you hardly know when he’s come in.  His numbers are verbose.  He makes his “presence” known by shouting “TIME” while most of us are looking at two to four minutes left.

The third thing also deals with leadership, and speaks volumes to me about his character.  His willingness and eagerness to approach a new athlete or visitor, no matter who it is, and introduce himself to that person–effectively erasing any barrier between our elite athletes and our newest people.  Sean believes in our people and he’s inclusive.  He’s eager to be pushed to excellence and absolutely willing to bring people with him.  He makes our place more fun.  As a coach, it’s fun to watch him grow.  As a friend, it’s awesome to have him around.
–Koach

1.  What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?
My favorite WOD’s are the hero workouts. One of the great things about this community is we recognize people who have died protecting our way of life, whether it be people overseas in the military or our cops and firefighters who have given their lives protecting the communities they serve. When doing these workouts we have an opportunity to say thank you to these heroes in our own unique way.
My favorite skills are pull ups and box jumps.

2.  What’s on your suck list?
I have a long list, but what I have been working on lately is handstand walks and pistols. I’ve also been working on anything involving strength. I want to get a lot stronger in my Olympic and power lifts because this will ultimately make my Metcon times faster.

3.  How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, Etc.)
In December of 2010 I tried Paleo for the first time. After approximately 2 weeks I noticed a significant difference in my WOD times. Shortly after, Crossfit 310 had the 30-day Paleo Challenge which I took part in. Within the past 6 months I have switched to Primal and started to drink milk again, which I feel helps my strength and recovery.

4.  How did you hear about CrossFit 310?
In March of 2010, Helen (my wife) asked me about Crossfit gyms in the area and I told her there was one in Redondo Beach that she should look into. I had been doing Crossfit on my own since July or August of 2008 and I saw Crossfit 310’s link on the Crossfit main site. Helen joined up and shortly after that Ryan Peterson contacted Kris and Copfit was born, at which time I joined.

5.  How long have you been doing CrossFit?
I started doing Crossfit at 24 Hour Fitness in Carson in July or August of 2008. A co-worker told me about a workout called “Murph” which he said was really hard. In my head I was thinking, “Really, that doesn’t sound that hard.” The next day I went to Cal State Dominguez Hills and thought I was going to die from the workout. Since that day, I have been doing Crossfit and haven’t stopped.

6.  What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
I would tell them to understand that everything in Crossfit is going to take time and hard work, but that’s what makes it fun. The ability to learn a skill and remove it from your suck list is an awesome feeling.

Graham Burford

Graham Burford is the 2nd head atop the 6am Two Headed Pain Monster (also commonly referred to as Tank and Graham).  Graham, like his sadist twin Jason Tank, came into the Box with a bend towards the uncomfortable.  He was an endurance athlete who was looking for something to supplement his training when he found us.  As you can guess, he was satisfied with the amount of uncomfortable that we have on tap here, but I think he discovered more.  I can see this in his absolute dedication to being a participator.  Whatever we are doing at CrossFit 310, you can bet that he (and his awesome wife Brittny) will be a part of it.  And he’s usually spearheading it.  He is an amazing source of energy that helps fuel our box.

Graham is absolutely one of my favorite stories in the gym.  I love to use him as an example of how to self-correct.  His attention to his own mechanics and inefficiencies has certainly caught my eye.  He is constantly growing.  His endurance has increased!  His strength and quality of movement have absolutely improved.  His arsenal continues to grow.  One of the most admirable traits I see in Graham is his quiet, unrelenting drive.  If he is not good at something, he begins to work on that thing.  He focuses on and trains for the things he can’t do, but relishes the things he does well.  That is the perfect expression of what to do with CrossFit.  It is the reason Graham has slowly been bubbling to the top of the whiteboards.  I don’t see any signs of him slowing down.

If TankenGraham doesn’t kill itself first, the 6am Two Headed Pain Monster will be a force to reckon with.  Watch your back…it bites.
–Koach

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?

There are none that stand out ahead of many others.  Nancy is always fun, and Fran.  I like anything with a run, row, or squats.

2. What’s on your suck list?
Muscle Ups, Handstand Push Ups, Pistols, Double Unders…  Everything is on there, as I know I can get better at everything.

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)
Clean; 75 %  Paleo –  I am really focused on that since mid-November and want to see what 6 months of the best eating I have ever done can do.

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
I heard the word CrossFit from some friends and wanted to vary my training and get in shape for our wedding.  So, I Google searched to see what CrossFits were in the area, wanting to learn more.  I just connected with Koach and have gone from there.  I hate missing days now.

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
A year and a half.

6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
Don’t worry about what you can’t do, worry about what you can do and get better at that.  More will come in the end if you are consistent and keep working at what you can do.

 

Chivas Fujimoto

Where do you begin with Chivas Fujimoto?Leader.  Unlike most people, Chivas came into our community already familiar with the language and the culture of CrossFit.  He was already an accomplished athlete, already had a toolbox full of skills, and was already adept at getting uncomfortable and staying there when others would be retreating.  Chivas is a natural leader.  You don’t need me to tell you that.  His work ethic and his gregarious personality have already influenced most of you who are reading this.Student.  Just like everyone who comes through our doors, Chivas didn’t have all the skills and all the strength available to him.  His constant pursuit of these things and his willingness to be coached is a model for everyone.Friend.  Chivas is an absolute joy for me to have around.   I am happy to call this guy my friend, and feel lucky to have him as a coach–we all are actually.  One thing you may not know is, Chivas lives about two minutes from another CrossFit in Torrance.  He knows those guys and likes them, but 310 is where he calls home.  That is both flattering and inspiring at the same time.  He is invested in our place.  He’s invested in you.Chivas isn’t done.  I personally think he’s just scratching the surface, both physically and as a Coach.  If that’s true, we’re all in for a good time.  I’m excited to watch this guy grow even more.
–Koach
1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?
My favorite WOD is “The Chief”: 5 rounds of AMRAP 3 min. work, 1 min. rest: 3 power cleans 135#, 6 pushups, 9 squats…it’s killer every time! My favorite skill changes often because a newly-acquired skill becomes my new favorite skill! I also prefer any WOD or skill that I am better at than Chris Miretti.

2. What’s on your suck list?

Yikes! The ever-growing suck list…Here’s the top sucky on my suck list: MOBILITY. That is why CrossFit 310 is a fit for me. Kris has helped me immensely with my mobility, which in turn, has helped my overall CrossFit (and overall progression as a normal functioning human being). And….I hate rowing!

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)
My diet is horrible. I love to EAT — sandwiches, Spam (my family and I are originally from Hawaii), candy, ice cream, burritos, Frosted Flakes, chocolate chip cookies, brownies…ay ya yaa..I can go on forever. But, Lynzee makes us somewhat clean-mostly healthy-quality food dinners. I know, I know…change is necessary. I’ll start tomorrow…;) Just kidding.

4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?

Ryan Peterson, who lived across the street at the time, invited me to try it out. I think it was about 1 1/2 years ago. Thanks, Ryan!

5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
I started doing CrossFit about 3 1/2 years ago. For the majority of that time, however, I did it at a globo gym, which obviously did not provide me with the necessary equipment or space. I also realized that I needed a coach…After crossfitting at several different boxes, I found my home at 310.

6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
At first, just learn how to become “comfortable with uncomfortable.” Then, once you’ve gotten the basic movements down, gobble it all up and drink the proverbial KOOL-AID…go wild with CrossFit. Then, once you’ve been labeled an addict, you will learn the most important thing: REST DAYS….

 

Chris Miretti

Chris Miretti -28 years old/6’1”/205lbs

Chris Miretti is a great example of passion and progress in our community.  He came into our box already having lost 70lbs or more.  He was familiar with CrossFit and had been working out and playing with CrossFit for some time.  I can remember him telling me how badly he wanted to get better at his pullups.  I can remember an eagerness to get into class and play hard all the time.  Chris is willing to beat himself into a shallow bowl of soup on a daily basis because he wants to get better at this stuff.  How much fun is that for a coach?  Ironically, I spend most of my time coaching Chris to work smarter, not harder.  It is so fun to watch him rise steadily in the ranks.  His consistent progress encourages me as a coach because I get to point towards him and tell people to go and do likewise.  I look forward to having him in class because of his sense of humor (reader should note his specific brand of humor is frequently administered to Chivas), and his ability to encourage others.  He’s got a ton of potential that I can’t wait to get to, and every time I see him kipping away on the bar, I smile.
–Koach

1. What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?
My favorite WODs are anything that will put me on the ground gasping for air and begging myself not to throw up.  I enjoy WODs with gymnastic movements, just because they’re fun to attempt.  But my favorite WODs are the grinders that just ruin you physically and mentally to the point where you become delusional and begin to think to yourself “I cant do this, I need to drop down on the weight”.  Those are the ones that make you stronger in more ways than one.

2. What’s on your suck list?
My suck list is big.  If it was up to me, I would put every lift and movement on to my suck list.  As of right now it consists of muscle ups, pullups, hand stand push ups, snatches, heavy squats.  I guess you can say everything is on my suck list because I want to get better at all my lifts and every movement that I do.

3. How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)
I don’t really have a label to what my diet is.  I do occasionally consume alcohol, grains, sweets, but I try to keep it to a minimum.  It takes a good diet to keep looking as good as I do; bodies aren’t born looking this good, they’re created that way. (That’s humor for you folks that don’t know me)
4. How did you hear about CrossFit310?
I heard about CF310 through my friend Chivas Fujimoto.  It took some talking into to going but as I walked through the doors, met Kris and did my first real WOD, I knew that this was going to be my home.
5. How long have you been doing CrossFit?
I’ve been doing CrossFit for about 2 years off an on, but that was while being at a “globo gym” with no bumper plates or sufficient places to do WODs and workouts. It was a disappointment.  We got yelled at by the staff and the people “working out” for doing our makeshift WODs.  It’s much better to be at a real box.  The first WOD I ever did was Fight Gone Bad. Fujimoto was bragging about these new workouts and how cool he was and how nice his hair is, so he dragged me into the gym to get one done.  I also have to mention that I broke my left big toe 2 hours before during jiu jitsu training, but I didn’t think it was broken at the time, so I did FGB  anyway.  During the first round as I was doing the box jumps (never having done any before) I got to about 6, and my toe gave out and I ended up falling and landing under the makeshift box we made out of plastic aerobic steps.  It was a disaster.  I kept at it still with the broken toe and I never looked back from there.
6. What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
A lot of the people that as me about CrossFit are highly intimidated by it.  They’re scared of that high intensity and not being familiar with the movements.  We have all been there and we all took the step to becoming better competitors in the race of life.  Also,  I used to weigh about 290lbs and never thought it would be possible to be doing the things that I can do now.  So the advice I would like to give is, set goals for yourself and make them challenging but obtainable. If you want something in life you’re going to do whatever it takes to get it.  Make that suck list, tape it to your fridge and practice whatever you’re bad at. Stay after the class time and make time to work on whatever it is you want to become better at.  There’s a lot of advice I could give because I’ve been there and I’ve done it all, I’ve made the same excuses and mistakes you have too.  So keep your head up and NEVER not finish.  I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul.

Sarah Money

Sarah Money came into my office eight months ago with an absolute fire in her eyes.  “I want to compete” she said, and that’s basically all I remember from the conversation.  I know that we made plans on how we would attack that goal, and how her training would need to evolve, but the only real memory I have of that short talk was all that blazing light coming off of her.

Sarah came into our gym already a competent athlete, but eager to learn more and attack her weaknesses.  She is a personal trainer who’s background included CrossFit in the past.  Sarah is fun and likable, and I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like her.  She is a leader in our gym, and she leads in the best way.  She leads by example.  She cares deeply about moving the right way.  She wants to be the strongest and the fastest sure, but she also wants to be the most impressive, I think.  She seems to crave doing things the best way (that craving is, ironically, her achilles heal too), and she takes almost a sadistic joy in suffering through hard things.

Sarah is competing this weekend at the Next Level Invitational, and we are very excited and proud of her.  I can’t wait to watch her grow even more.
-Coach Kris


[Crossfit 310]:
What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?
[Sarah Money]:
  Favorite WOD/skill: honestly hard to say. I do love me a “Nancy”, or anything with the barbell (especially overhead skillwork), and moving awkward heavy things up the stairs or through a run. But really I feel anything could come together as a “perfect storm” and become one of my favorite WOD’s. It’s the uncomfortable that as much as it IS uncomfortable, I welcome. There is absolutely nothing like the feeling of testing your limits.

[Crossfit 310]: What’s on your suck list?
[Sarah Money]:
  What’s not?! Ha. Most definitely the bodyweight or gymnastic skills.  Read the full post:  click here

[Crossfit 310]: How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)
[Money]: 
I would best describe it as 80/20 “clean”. I stray from grains and dairy. Mostly meat (mmmmm), fruits/veggies and cooking oils. My struggles are with sugar, dun dun dun. Hello, my name is Sarah, and I’m a chocoholic.

[Crossfit 310]: How did you hear about CrossFit310?
[Money]: 
Totally googled the closest CrossFit to where I was living at the time. Dropped by one day, Liz was coming out of the gym and walked me down to meet Kris and life immediately changed. You are lucky to meet one influential person in your life, but 2 game changers within 5 mins of the same day?!

[Crossfit 310]: How long have you been doing CrossFit?
[Money]: 
I started with 310 in Oct of last year. I dabbled with CrossFit back in ’08 for a little bit but lost touch for almost 2 years until I found the 310 family.

[Crossfit 310]: What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
[Money]:
 
Use it as your own personal lab and have fun. Each person has their own reason and mostly likely a different reason, but we are all there to grow, no matter how big or small. Some days are better than others but there is always SOMETHING you can take with you (hopefully at some point Liz’s “paleo” coconut/almond/chocolate cube of goodness).

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Heather Moe

If you didn’t know, Heather Moe, 5:30pm mainstay and occasional 6am interloper, is leaving us to pursue another career opportunity in Virginia.

I can remember Heather sitting across from me in our intro.  She had a noticeable energy and sense of excitement.  She came in strong and athletic, but missing some tools that relegated her to the middle of the pack on most WOD’s.  Over time though, her determination, curiosity and diligence would seemingly start to free her in a number of different ways.  She is such a great example of what it looks like to blossom into more and more fun.  In fact, if I could give everyone one thing from Heather, it would be her sense of play.  This is the thing that lets her connect with so many people in class.  It’s the big secret to success in our place.

There’s an old CrossFit tagline that says, “It doesn’t have to be fun, to be fun,” and that’s the silent agreement that we’re all operating under.  There are moments when this stuff can be absolutely miserable…but for most of us, that challenge to endure is kinda fun.

Heather, we will miss you.  You are a great example, a great encourager, and a great addition to whatever family you’re going to.  Keep us informed on your adventures.

–Coach Kris

[Crossfit 310]: What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?
[Heather Moe]:
The Clean & Jerk and any gymnastics skills.  I fell in love with the clean and jerk when I first learned it last Fall.  If done right, the movement can look so graceful with the added benefit of giving the lifter the ability to move some quality weight. As for the gymnastics skills, as a little girl my sisters and I were always vaulting off something, up a tree or turning handstands and cartwheels.  Getting to “play” again as an adult harkens me back to the fun I had as a kid.  I never thought I’d get to play like that as an adult and I absolutely love it!

[Crossfit 310]: What’s on your suck list?
[Heather Moe]:
Hands down, squat cleans.  Love the clean part, hate the squat part.  My squat is still inconsistent and unstable at times, making this movement super hard when I try to move any kind of weight.

[Crossfit 310]: How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)
[Heather Moe]:
Just 3 months ago I would have looked at you cross-eyed and said “Whaat??”  My journey with food started when I became annoyed that Crossfit was not yielding any significant weight loss.  This brought me to Kris who introduced me to the Paleo and Primal “ways of eating” (the diet word has weird connotations associated with it, so I’ll stick with “way of eating”).  Before, my way of eating was not bad, just horribly imbalanced w/little protein and lots and lots of carbs.  Now, I follow a mostly Primal diet.  I don’t eat grains on a regular basis, make protein a main part of my meals, eat a lot of fruits and veg and still struggle with not giving into that wonderful, but deadly, sugar craving.  It’s still a journey, but I’ve seen results, feel great and have sustainable energy to do what I want and need to do.

[Crossfit 310]: How did you hear about CrossFit310?
[Heather Moe]:
A lot of my military friends participated in Crossfit, especially during their deployments, and highly praised its effectiveness.  When my older sister deployed to Iraq a few years ago and took on Crossfit, she came home for her wedding looking amazing.  She was a very unlikely Crossfit convert and I figured if she could do it, so could I.  When Jeannie introduced me to Crossfit310, I jumped at the chance to try a class and, now, there is no turning back.

[Crossfit 310]: How long have you been doing CrossFit?
[Heather Moe]:
Since October 2010

[Crossfit 310]: What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
[Heather Moe]:
Crossfit, literally, is for everyone.  For people of all ages, sizes and skill levels.  While the work will look intimidating and overwhelming at first, realize your coach is interested in growing and increasing your skill and ability, not breaking you the first week you arrive.  You might feel broken the first several weeks there (and believe me, I did), but the coaches will not push you beyond what you are physically able to do.  Trust them and listen to their advice.  Also, listen to what your own body is saying.  If something doesn’t feel right or feels like you might hurt yourself, stop and listen!

Last piece of advice, increasing physical ability is a process.  This means it will require time and dedication to see improvement, but this is the best part.  Enjoy the journey and celebrate the small successes and met goals.  You will certainly have a lot of other people who will be celebrating along with you.  Crossfit will help you lose weight, become stronger and more capable, and, in general, give you a better quality of life.  It will change your life forever if you let it.

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Matt Chavez

The Matt Chavez love continues. An appropriate athlete spotlight before he jets off to another CrossFit up North and they get all the credit for his awesomeness.Matt is without a doubt one of the most tenacious competitors I’ve been around. Many of you know that when he came to us he was really struggling with mobility in his ankle (which had recently had surgery). You’ve probably also witnessed his shoulder mobility issues…and oh yeah, his hips and hamstrings are made of stone. Now, all of this might seem like I’m being harsh in my description of him, but I do it for this reason. Despite a huge struggle with nearly every movement (except barbell curls), Matt is still up in the front of the pack all of the time. His tenacity overcomes a mountain of adversity. Sometimes I can’t believe how hard he fights. If he ever conquers those mobility issues, he is gonna be scary good.Matt is an awesome force in our community. His sense of humor and playfulness will be a huge loss for us. He has absolutely embraced the spirit of our box, and there will be a gaping hole where this crazy kid used to stand…sleeveless…dancing…trying to make me nauseous.We’ll miss you brother.-Coach Kris

Q & A with Matt
[Crossfit 310]: What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)
[Matt]:I love anything with running. Coming from a soccer background I enjoy having the familiarity of the run allowing me to recover. The workout Helen comes to mind as a favorite. There are many skills I hope to master soon (snatch, thrusters) but I really like cleans. Hang cleans and power cleans are fun for me at the moment. I believe this is due to not have ANY rack position when I first came to Crossfit310. Now everytime I clean I see how far I have come. Have a WOD with cleans and a run… I am in heaven!

[Crossfit 310]:
What’s on your suck list?
[Matt]:I think the only thing that was not on my suck list when I began was bicep curls. The problem with that was we never do them! Kris used to call me ‘glamour’ due to the constant request for curls. I have come a long way since. I have my double-unders and they are up to 33 but my jump is too high. I get burnt out very quickly. My wall balls are a suck list staple. I think they like being on that list and just bought a home there. And finally snatch is due to not being able to try it yet. Mobility issues with my shoulder. Hope to keep progressing and tackle that soon!

[CF310]:
How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)
[Matt]:Paleo. But have been toying with chav-leo. It’s paleo with my twist. Paleo with the following added… oatmeal, rice, black beans and potatoes. These carbohydrate sources are to support anaerobic training. Getting all your carbs from fruits/veggies is good to a certain extent. Sugar is in fruit, natural sugar but it’s still sugar and too much is no bueno. I am extremely active. I do 2 workouts a day minimum. Crossfit in the morning and usually soccer in the evening. Surfing, running, weightlifting and biking usually creep in during week to make 3 activities somedays. I feel I can not have the perfect paleo meal before/ after each of these. It’s true that these few starchy carbs stick and are harder to burn through but that is what I need. I have a very high metabolism along with being constantly on the go. As I said I am toying with it. I will keep you posted!

[CF310]:
How did you hear about CrossFit310?

[Matt]: In early May (2010) I went to wedding in Cancun and saw a friend I had not seen in 4 months. I noticed a good change in her body and the passion in which she was talking about this crossfit thing. I came back from Cancun with an interest and desire to find out what this whole thing was about. I was recovering from ankle surgery in January and the gym was becoming a burden. I could not run yet so all I did was stationary weightlifting… Hence my obsession with bicep curls when I joined. I looked up where my local crossfit gyms were and up popped Crossfit310. I went in for my baseline workout and was hooked. Being a coach I appreciated Kris and how he relayed the information. I loved how you could scale the workouts due to injuries or mobility issues. And what I was most excited about was that no day is the same! I mean I didn’t even know what I was going to do until I showed up to the gym. Which I have a love/hate relationship with now.

[CF310]:
How long have you been doing Cross Fit?

[Matt]:I have been doing CrossFit for about 8 months. I want to become a beast. An all around athlete. I want to push my body to see what it is capable of. Mobility with my ankle and now my shoulder has held me back but I believe good things are to come.

[CF310]:
What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?

[Matt]:First, listen to your body. Even if you have never done CrossFit, your body talks to you. Learn to understand the language.Second, diet is more important than you think. You can put all the effort an time into your workouts but if your diet is lacking, you’ll never reach your potential. Think of it this way. How many times a week do you workout? Now how many time a week do you eat?Third, push yourself to be better and find your niche. If it’s cardio you want, then light weight and go for your best time. If it’s heaviest weight you want, then load up that bar as much as you can. No matter what you want to accomplish, you can scale it to achieve it.Forth, keep correct form. Above I just said you may want to load up that bar. But just think if you compromise form, you will be picking up nothing. Form is the most important thing to accomplish about a skill before adding load.Last, use the people around you. Your trainer. Soak up Kris’s knowledge. Use him whenever and however you can. Fellow classmates. Their experiences with workouts, movements and injuries. Talk diet with everyone and use people to help you. And finally use everyone for motivation and encouragement. If someone is in front of you… catch them! If someone is behind you, encourage them to catch you!

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Magdalena Ping

Todays spotlight is very special to me because no one knows how different Magdalena Ping was 4 years ago in comparison to what she is now.   When you see mag now, she is deadlifting 200lbs or more.  She is working on swinging that 53lb Kettle.  She has Double-Unders, she can leap over 24″ and she’s Running all over the place.  What you don’t know is that Mag and I have been friends for a long long time, and we trained together years ago.  You don’t know that she suffer’s from Exercise Induced Asthma.  You don’t know that she couldn’t walk on a treadmill for more than a minute without almost collapsing.  Her shoulder hurt her so she couldn’t lift things overhead.  Her wrists hurt, so she couldn’t do very many pushups (even from her knees), and she weighed 29lbs  more when she first started classes with us!
With one of the most amazing transformations I have ever witnessed across almost every spectrum, Magdalena is a walking, talking, thrivingendorsement for the new mom:  Strong.  Beautiful.  Capable.  Inspiring.-Coach Kris
Q & A with Mag[Crossfit 310]: What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)[Magdalena]:My favorite WOD is any one that has a bar exercise in it. I never would have said that before I started cross fit. LOL.
[Crossfit 310]: What’s on your suck list?
[Magdalena]: To name a few items on my suck list.. Pull Ups, Push Ups and Cross over Jump Rope
[CF310]:How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)
[Mag]: My diet is very clean. Low carb, High Protein.  moderation.

[CF310]:  How did you hear about CrossFit310?
[Mag]:
From Kris.  He trained me after both of my children were born and one day I called him to let him know I was in need of something to get me back in shape! So he brought me in to his cross fit gym and a year later…  here we are! He is a dear Friend!

[CF310]: How long have you been doing Cross Fit?
[Mag]: I have been doing cross Fit for about 13 months. It has changed my mind, body and spirit about being fit, healthy and strong.

[CF310]:What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
[Mag]:
I just want to share with everyone about how positive this is for me! I could barely walk at an incline after my first child was born and now able to Run a 8:13 mile and still have some air left, Dead lift 205lbs

And the list goes on and on. It’s amazing what you can train your body and mind to do if you are determined and dedicated.  There are different commitments you have to make such as diet, lifestyle and consistency. For me this was the easy part because I was searching for something to change me and the way my body felt and looked.  At first I ran into some obstacles with my knee hurting because of my movements being wrong but after I learned how to correct that, my knee pain disappeared! If you come in and you are new… just know that we all got to where we are by putting in the work and wanting change and growth in our ability to be fit. Start at your own pace and work up to be the best you can be! Now that is encouraging isn’t it? I owe my success to you Kris/Crossfit310! My heroes!
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Jason Tank

Jason Tank
Jason Tank lacks the mechanism most of us have inside our brain that lets us know when something is startlingly difficult. More precisely, I think he has it, but long ago he hacked into it and diffused any warning system that comes standard in the human mind. Consequently, Jason displays less fear than might be appropriate in many circumstances. Which is something I of course find most valuable in him…
Jason loves CrossFit, and he is fearless. What you don’t know is how much that affects the rest of your experience in the gym. His passion and zeal is contagious inside of the down and dirty 6am environment. On many occasions you have Jason (and his evil twin Graham Burford) to thank for the 2pood as RX, or the extra 800 meters inside of your run, because Jason frequently asks for more work just to see if he can do it. Sick, I know, but it makes us all better.Jason is not the strongest guy in our gym (yet), but he may be the most daring. He is an invaluable friend to me. He inspires me all the time.You will see much more from him.-Coach Kris

Q & A with Tank
[Crossfit 310]: What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?
[Tank]:
Favorite WOD would have to be Filthy Fifty just for the sheer amount of work and how much room for improvement there it. My favorite Skill is Deadlift, I like picking up heavy things.

[CF310]:
What’s on your suck list?

[TANK]:
Running jump rope, ring dips, muscle up and pretty much all squats.

[CF310]:
How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)

[TANK]:
I eat Paleo/Zone for the most part. I don’t measure my food but I try to eyeball portions to get that 40/30/30 balance. Sunday is off day, also known as “Sunday Funday”.

[CF 310]:
How did you hear about CrossFit310?

[TANK]:
Met Kris at church and a few other people that go to church were going. It sounded like something I would enjoy, and I was right.

[CF310]:
How long have you been doing CrossFit?

[TANK]:
Started April 7th 2010.

[CF310]:
What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?
[TANK]: No matter how hard the work looks, do it, you can do more than you think you can, and you will be successful if you do it.
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Christine “Small” Galligani

Chris was the first athlete to join our ranks when we moved into our new space. She had been CrossFitting at a great Box down in O.C. (Next Level Performance), so she came in knowing the language, knowing the culture, and already knowing her numbers—sweet!

Chris is an absolute joy to have in classes. Affectionately known as “small” (1/2 of the dynamic duo known as “Tall and Small”), Her attitude towards the difficult tasks set before her is what makes her stand out. If size were measured by determination, she would be a giant. Her eagerness to be better is crucial to her success. Her eagerness to help and encourage anyone who happens to be next to her is crucial to your success—even if you don’t know it yet.

Stand next to her if you can. See if some of that determination will rub off on you. And if I haven’t already, tell her to pick up something heavy.

-Coach Kris

Q & A with Chris:
[Crossfit310]:  What is your favorite WOD(s) or skill(s)?
[ChrisGalligani]: Hmm… I don’t really have a favorite WOD. As long as I have put everything I had into it, I feel good about whatever it is that I just accomplished. That said, I can rock a good squat – front, back or air (Tania loves to tease that I should use a tennis ball as my target), I love me a good Abmat sit up, and I will admit to having fun with the tire flipping. I am so enjoying my progression on the pull-up bar. I will get there and I will kip; mark my word

[CF310]:
What’s on your suck list?
[Chris]: I always feel like it’s easier to talk about what ISN’T on my suck list! That’s the thing about CrossFit: even the things you do well are always becoming more challenging because you are adding more weight or distance or speed or some other way to grow your strength. That said, pretty much anything with the med balls (cleans or wall ball) is a mental block for me. Also, the more gymnastic skills we do, think handstands and L-sits, are not strength areas for me. And, you can ask any of the three people who coached me through them last time we did pistol rolls… This is not a strength area for me in the least.

[CF310]:
How would you describe your diet? (Paleo, Primal, Zone, Clean, etc)

[Chris]:
My diet is what I would call “Everything in Moderation.” I don’t eat 4-leggeds (cow, pig) with the exception of an annual hamburger and hot dogs at baseball games, so I’m a lean meat only girl and have been for years. That is simply a preference for me. I’m usually pretty strict with my eating during the week: a lot of salads, fruit, chicken, turkey, fish – repeat. I prefer to cook at home instead of going out, and I don’t like fast food. I’m a big water drinker and have a big mug of green tea daily. I am addicted to raw almonds and I try to avoid grains. That said, on weekends and special occasions, I tend to allow myself to indulge here and there; it’s just a matter of balancing those choices with a lot of other good ones for me. Being as small as I am, the bad choices show up on my body pretty quickly. I have been reading up on and starting to experiment here and there with some paleo-friendly food; I think this is where I am headed. I’m learning a lot from Jojo and Liz’s great recipes, so keep them coming!

[CF310]:
How did you hear about CrossFit310?
[Chris]: I was shopping for CrossFits! I was moving from Orange County up to the South Bay, and I did baseline classes at three different CrossFits in the area. Kris was such a great coach and had the most awesome attitude that I was sold almost immediately. I loved the size of 310 and the people are amazing. It was just the right combination of team camaraderie and individual performance for me. I am a little bit of an addict!

[CF310]:
How long have you been doing CrossFit?

[Chris]:
I was at CrossFit No Limits Performance in Mission Viejo before I started at 310. (You guys call me Small; they named me Shorty. I’m picking up on a trend here.) I have been a CrossFitter since October 2009. After the first three months of CrossFit training, I no longer needed to wear the knee brace I had used for ten years while running because the core training had strengthened me in a completely different way. From that point on, I was hooked.

[CF310]:
What encouragement or advice would you give to new people coming in?

[Chris]:
Small’s helpful hints for newcomers:• Don’t be afraid to try. EVERYTHING is new when you first come to CrossFit, even things you think you’ve done before. We do skills in a completely different way, so be open to the changes and come to the gym to learn. It’s the skill work and correct form that help get you through the most grueling WODs. And, it’s the practice and positive mindset that push you to a whole other level of performance.• Talk it up with people! Just don’t do it when Kris is instructing the group… Our group is friendly and outgoing. People are very supportive of each other and will help walk you through any skill you feel is tough for you. You will always learn something from the people you spend that hour with and it will really help when they are cheering you through the toughest WODs.• Along with that one, get yourself a buddy. I usually try to find someone who is just a little bit stronger than I am in the skills we will be using during the WOD. I set up my station near them and keep an eye on their progress. This helps me motivate to try to keep up with them when I am struggling and I have to rely on my competitive nature to push me through. (This is one of the reasons that Helen and I are always 1 second apart when we finish a race!) It also helps me gauge which skills I am doing well and which I need to practice more often. Since there are no mirrors at CrossFit, I learn by watching everyone else and trying to incorporate the good things they are doing into my own skill work. This is why times and weights used are logged on the boards; use them to help you set goals for yourself and find someone to chase.• Write it down. Get yourself a notebook the next time you are at the store and start logging what you do. Some people write what they eat every day, others just the WOD, some track their weight. Whatever is helpful for you to know is useful information. I really like to know my numbers so I can set a realistic goal for myself. So, I track how much I lift, how many reps, etc. Before I start a workout, I look at my last numbers for that skill and set a challenge for myself so I can have a target to accomplish. It really helps me to have a purpose for the workout.• Listen to Kris. There will be days where the whole WOD is your suck list, and there will be days when he has moved you to a new weight on something and you are nervous about it. You might not like him very much right at that moment, but trust your coach. He has watched your progress and knows what you are capable of, probably more than you do. I’m not going to lie, those days will still suck. But, in the big picture, they help you get to the next goal.•Stretch, soak, roll out and stretch some more. The recovery is always hard, but it is especially tough when you are first starting. I remember having days of not being able to walk and feeling like I could never go down a flight of stairs again! Help yourself recover by getting enough rest, drinking a lot of water, and making sure you are stretching and rolling out as much as you can. It does make a difference.