Thursday, February 28, 2008

Two Things To Notice About This Photo

1. Your coaches train very, very hard. Their capacities to suffer are incredible. They test drive your workouts. And they get, very, very sore. Just ask Adrian about the state of his arms in this photo.

2. Did you notice the six new squat stands? This brings our total to eleven. Most Crossfit facilities don't even have ten. But ours go up to eleven. Sniff the glove?

Don't forget to ask Coach Boz.

Coach K

Book Review: Skinny Bitch

There are many reasons America is full of the unfit, the latest contribution hurting forward progress is the book Skinny Bitch. A New York Times Bestseller and "secret diet" of the stars, Skinny Bitch is an emphatic endorsement of veganism. Militant veganism.

Now, as Crossfitters we strive to eat only what is necessary to fuel the body for performance and recovery, typically through a hormonally intelligent nutritional plan (Zone, Paleo, Natural Hormonal Enhancement, Metabolic Diet). That being said, in order to efficiently perform and repair the body, one must consume an adequate amount of protein, the most effective and available source is animal protein.

Skinny Bitch will have you believe that eating (more like not eating) for any reason other than being skinny is unhealthy and immoral. Wow. They even suggest some wonderful ways to stave off your hunger and lose weight; "If you're hungry, drink a big glass of cold water. It should keep you full for a few more hours before you have to eat. Or, my favorite, "Donate blood. You'll lose weight AND help save a life."

I understand that the delivery method of their completely unfounded nutritional advocation is meant to cause a rise, it gets attention. But, it is also dangerous. Condoning veganism to be skinny is sentencing their disciples to a myriad of nutritional deficiencies and probable osteoporosis by their mid-30s. You can't stress the body when you're too tired to get out of bed.

I respect everyone's personal nutritional choices; vegetarian, carnivore, omnivore even veganism. What I cannot understand and what most folks who decide to become Skinny Bitches or Bastards underestimate, is the tremendous dedication and vigilance a vegan lifestyle requires in order to be nutritionally balanced. You cannot choose a harder dietary path (if done correctly) than veganism. Don't be a vegan because some British import endorses a book. I'm sure she can't do pull-ups. Or push-ups. Or Fran.

Read the book (on a rest day, it only takes 45 minutes). Post thoughts to comments.

Think about what you're eating.

Coach Kevin

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Fight the good Fight

Know this: When one of your coaches is asking for perfection (or damn near it), there is an unwritten agreement that it may not happen immediately. We understand this, but believe (truly) that over time you are capable of developing beyond your current standard. The coach's job is to re-inforce the things you know that you know, remind you of the things you forget you know, and teach you the things you didn't know you didn't know...all you have to do is fight for it. The process is the important part of this journey, and part of that process is fighting for perfection. None of us will ever attain perfection in many of the skills we practice, but merely get closer to mastery. The struggle is where the learning is and shouldn't be approached or dismissed lightly. It is your responsibility to truly want to improve no matter what your current skill level. So enjoy the process, enjoy the road, but most of all enjoy the struggle! Even if it's not perfect, fight for it!

See you at 6,

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Squat With a Loved One

As if you needed yet another reason to Crossfit, it turns out that we constantly hear from happy couples that they get to spend quality time together while training

Now, for your average Globo-gym going man, being able to drop off you wife at the "cardio pump" room means more alone time at the cable cross over station. And that's fine. But a Crossfit man gets to simultaneously go for max effort body weight squats at the same time as his honey! (And vice versa of course but you tend to see more women ditch their men so they can spend more time on the ass blaster, not cable cross-over)

Check out SFCF originals Hellinor and Ollie spending QT on a Saturday morning.

Coach K

Saturday, February 23, 2008

The 415

It is happening again. An athlete shows up, works as hard as he can, changes how he eats, and becomes the monster he is.
Ladies and gentlemen, Stephen.

And, it's official. Stephen can now deadlift all five of his children at the same time!

Coach K

Friday, February 22, 2008


Why do we focus on good movement and complicated weightlifting techniques? Recall the 10 physical skills we use to define fitness:

Cardio-Respiratory Endurance

In a nutshell, the development of complete movements augments our capacity across the ten physical skills. By taking technical practice out of our movements, we limit or blunt the involvement of many of these skills (namely the 'bottom five'). Comparing an athlete with a typical gym-rat will quickly demonstrate the superiority of the former in all areas concerning body-awareness, co-ordination and in most instances, mobility and flexibility. They are simply more integrated. It is a little known fact that competitive weightlifters (as shown in the photo) are only second to gymnasts in hip and shoulder girdle flexibility. That is not a co-incidence or a mistake...good movement and good technique breeds good fitness!

See you at 6,


Thursday, February 21, 2008

Athlete Profile: Katherine Basbaum

Full name: Katherine Basbaum

Sign: Libra

Occupation: Research and Creative development-
TV/infomercial production

Nickname: Kitty (or Kat Power if you ask Josh C or

How long have you been Crossfitting? It'll be 2
years in April

Favorite exercise or workout? deadlift, push-jerk

Least favorite? overhead squat because I hate bringing the
weight back down (and of course burpees)

Any goals for 2008? more consistent pull-ups (quantity and quality)

One thing that people don't know about you? I was an
actress for 5 years after college and I have the VHS
tapes to prove it ;)

Theme song? Eric Clapton "It's in the Way that You
Use It"

Thank you, Kat Power! Those of us who have had the pleasure of training (or drinking) with you, thoroughly enjoy and appreciate both your hard work and your humor! Keep up the strong work!

Coach Kevin

Monday, February 18, 2008

Zercher, Buuuudy.

The Zercher Squat is old school to be sure, and part of a collection of lifts called the "Odd Lifts". But, there is actually not anything weird about squating something that you are clutching to your chest. It turns out that while we typically train with barbells to overload functional movements, how we hold the barbell isn't really based in much reality. The Zercher squat is an attempt to bridge the divide between the lifting up of say, a heavy car transmission, and the beautiful functionality of using the modern barbell. Simple right? Definitely not easy.
Check out Saturday's crew practicing "old man strength".

Coach K

Thursday, February 14, 2008

FGB aka Valentine's Day Massacre

Team 7pm took on Fight Gone Bad this evening and lived to tell about it. Great work gang, hope you found more love at home!

Coach Kevin

Wednesday, February 13, 2008


As a thought experiment, see if you can come up with 3 workouts using items you have at home (or no equipment at all). Often you will find that some of the most effective workouts are born of neccessity, not abundance. Post your favourites to the comments.

Here's a good all round ass kicker, the burpee, in action. Note the absence of anything fancy...

Also, a reminder that the Saturday open gym is cancelled this week (Am classes are still on however) so spread the word!

See you at 6,


Elephant on Your Back

We often forget that basic body weight movements can be made much more difficult with the addition of a little mass. While we normally adhere to the high volume, high repetition iterations of movements like the pullup, dip, and pushup, there is something very satisfying about knowing that you can still do a pushup with the likes of say, all of your little cousins on your back.

Check out Carl and JD this Tuesday night.
By the way, Carl in the hood is using "bodyweight".

Coach K

Monday, February 11, 2008

This House is Clean

The SFCF Box is all cleaned up, swept out and has been stocked with even more dumbbells for your fitness pleasure. Please be sure to put your weights back where you found them and help keep the container as tidy as possible. Thank you from all the coaches for your help in making this house a home.

Coach Kevin

Sunday, February 10, 2008

SFCF to Host POSE Running Clinic-March 15th.

San Francisco Crossfit is very pleased to have the uber-running master coach, Brian McKenzie of Genetic-Potential for our very own running seminar.

Who is this guy?
Brian Mackenzie is an expert in strength and conditioning for endurance athletes as well as a coach for Multisports Orange County. He is a Level 3 CrossFit Certified Trainer and is a Level 3 POSE Certified Running Coach. He is the co-creator of CrossFit’s Run Technique and Endurance Certification, and is greatly involved in further education with CrossFit. Along with various training methodologies (many quite unorthodox) Genetic Potential uses CrossFit as the cornerstone to their training.
Brian is a competitive Ultra Runner and Ironman Triathlete. He has competed in Ironman Canada along with several ultra marathons ranging from 50k to 100 miles including the Western States 100 and the Angeles Crest 100.
In addition to owning Genetic Potential, Brian founded and operates one of the only internship programs for professional trainers in California.

The Pose Method is a system for teaching of human movement developed by a 2-time Olympic Coach Dr. Nicholas S. Romanov. The name of the method comes from the word "pose" or "body position".
If you analyze the movement of any body through time and space, you will clearly see that the body passes through an infinite number of positions. Most of the positions (or poses) are transitional movements and are the result, not the cause, of proper positioning.
The ability of certain poses to integrate the whole chain of preceding and subsequent movements into one whole, wasting no energy on inconsequential movement laid the foundation of the Pose Method.
The Pose Method® can be applied to ANY human movement. In sports, application of the Pose Method can dramatically improve training and racing performance, help prevent injuries and give a competitive edge.
Imagine training and racing without fear... no fear of not knowing what you're doing, no fear of injuries, no fear of not being good at your sport, no fear of overtraining...
The first Pose Technique available to general public. Published for the first time in Russia in 1981 and available to general public worldwide from 1997, the Pose Method of Running was the first official and complete running technique on the market. With a number of running styles available today, the Pose Method of Running is currently the only method for teaching running technique and the only running technique in the world scientifically proven to reduce impact on knees by 50%.

Saturday March 15th.
Clinic limit: 18 athletes
Cost: $100 includes full day of coaching, video analysis, amazing lunch by Chef JD.
Payment holds your space.

Friday, February 08, 2008

New Beginnings

Diane and Ricardo, longtime friends of SFCF, are planning on opening their own facility in Burlingame in the near future. Best of luck guys!

Also, we are hosting a POSE running clinic March 15th with ultra-marathon specialist Brian Mackenzie (you can visit Brian's Crossfit affiliate at Brian has made a strong case for the benefits of endurance athletes training crossfit-style and is turning some heads in that community. The seminar will cost $100. Space is limited, so if you are interested, make sure you reserve a spot by signing up early!


Thursday, February 07, 2008

All The Cool Kids Have One

SFCF now has shirts and toques for sale! Ask your coaches how you too can be part of the next big thing!

Coach Kevin

Wednesday, February 06, 2008


How you approach a particular workout or movement can have a profound effect on your performance. Watch yourself carefully in your approach to movements and workouts you are less familiar with (or the ones you know will kick your ass). Don't let your previous encounter with a challenging progression dictate the tone of your workout. It is easy to convince yourself that what you are about to do is harder than the reality. However, if you are open to the individual experience you are much more likely to succeed. Find the point where your big brain tries to rationalize you into less than you are capable of and fix it.

Have fun,


Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Happy Fun Ball

This rubber band ball costs a whopping $2.49 at Office Max. You could of course make your own, but either way get your hands on one as soon as you can.

I have spent the better part of the last five or six years looking for the perfect ball on which to roll my sore, bound down, dysfunctional, tight, nasty bits. I've tried tennis balls, field hockey balls, mini-medicine balls, balls with spikes, and dog chew toys. Nothing works as well as this little wonder.

So, you've got one? Good. Let's start working.

Find a very hard chair or bench. Place the miracle ball under your bum where your hamstrings insert onto your pelvis. Crush and smash anything that is painful.

Lay on the ground, on your side. Place the happy fun ball on the side of your hip right above the most bony part of the side of your upper leg. Not sore there? Find something that is and roll baby.

There is no, one right way. Find something that hurts and smash it.
It is ok to pre-medicate. You may need wine, or a finger or two of good irish whiskey.

Set the clock and keep rolling for 5 minutes. Get as much done as you can.

Good luck, and buy one for a loved one.

Coach K

Ps. Don't taunt happy fun ball.

Sunday, February 03, 2008


Preparing to be successful carries with it a higher percentage of actually being successful, than not preparing at all. It is a rare occurrence for someone to actually accomplish a goal or achieve a remarkable feat without preparation. One must commit to the process, focus on the goal and be mindful of all the little things that when executed, protect the continuation of their forward progress toward personal accomplishment.

A Sunday afternoon ritual I engage in is setting out my weekly fish oil and vitamin rations. I purchased a pill box from Walgreen's and every Sunday I set out my supplementation for the week. Now, one could argue that it would be just as easy to count out the pills every morning and consume accordingly. But, the person making that argument probably doesn't leave the house at 530am when the rattle of a vitamin bottle is enough to wake my wife, who shouldn't be disturbed before 7am. Get the point? The pill box allows me to get my supplementation and allows my wife to get her Z's. Everyone's happy. Do something this week to simply your life. Consolidate. Streamline. Prepare.

Coach Kevin

Friday, February 01, 2008

Gotta Make Fun to Have Fun

Next time you see this man, make sure you wish him a very happy birthday!

In honor of Corby's B-day, L-sits on the rings will henceforth be known as 'Mustache Rides'...

Have Fun,