The do-run-run-run

CFE Running Seminar #2 (Saturday, June 20th)
Olympic Weightlifting Seminar #2 (Saturday, July 11th)
In Manhattan
Elements #60, 61, 62, 63, & 64 are SOLD OUT
#64 Tue/Thur @ 8:30pm, starts July 7 (2 slots left) SOLD OUT!
#65 Mon/Wed @ 8:30pm, starts July 13 (4 slots left)
#66 Tue/Thur @ 7am, starts July 14 (5 slots left)

In Brooklyn
#9 Mon/Wed @ 7pm, starts June 29
As is always the case when CFHQ calls for a 5K run, we encourage you to run it outdoors on your own if you are so inclined OR come down to the Box and see what your coach has cooked up for you. The choice is yours.
Monday 090615
Run 5 K
Post time to comments.
Compare to 090525.

NOTE: There is no 5:30pm WOD class today due to the fact that today’s WOD is a run-only WOD.
Why you should do today’s 5K run rather than sub out a different workout
“Be water, my friend”
It’s about ACTION
Cherry season made simpler

Coaching speed and reflexes

Carrots, anyone?

The badass women of the NE Qualifiers (video)
Hari and Grace demo an alternate function of our raised platforms:


  • Scaling options for today’s workout, courtesy of the CrossFit Brand X forums:
    Big Dawgs and Pack:
    I know you hate it, but do it anyway Run 5 K.
    Run 1-2 miles depending on your ability
    Run 1-2 miles depending on your ability
    Additional resources on with regards to proper running technique (just do a search function for “POSE,” “sprint,” and/or “run” to find the relevant videos):
    Furthermore, if you need help mapping out 5K (3.1 miles), try

  • If you haven’t already read it, please let me again encourage you to read the following:
    It’s all you need to know about why you really should run today’s 5K.
    Anyone who comes to the Box at lunchtime today (when I’m scheduled to teach) will be strongly encouraged to either row a 5K or run a 5K (outdoors on their own, obviously–but they can leave their stuff at the Box and use the Box as a place to warm up before and cool down/stretch after). We’ll use to map out where a 5K can be done near the Box (most likely around the perimeter of Mad Sq Park).
    I’ll also use the time to help individuals work on skills one-on-one, either before or after they work out (or even instead of a workout).

  • torch

    3.1 mi neighborhood run (map my runs)
    Had to dodge a lot of cars. The resultant adrenaline may have something to do with the time.

  • Will anyone be at the Box for privates and/or training themselves today between 2 and 5 and/or tomorrow an hour before the lunch WOD begins?
    My schedule is complete insanity and I’m not able to make it to any WOD class times this week before I leave town.
    I am going to run the 5K today on my own, but I would love to come in and work on some ring, barbell, and grip skills.

  • torch

    Davi, I’ll be in there before the lunch class

  • Mike

    Torch, that is insanely fast. Nice job!
    Just curious how backed up the rowers usually get on the 5k run days? Never rowed a 5k before but I’d like to see what I can do.

  • jim

    a precaution for… i mapped out the wall street run from a few weeks ago to get an elevation map and for some reason the distance was off considerably…. well, considerably from what the course was stated to be, and how the times ended up. nyrr claimed it was a 3.0 mile course and was closer to 3.6. i suggest running a pre mapped run if you could. just my 2 cents.

  • Lisa

    Wow, Torch, smokin’ time!
    I was so glad to see this WOD scheduled for today – I need a recovery run after the weekend so this works perfectly. Or are we meant to sprint it? 🙂

  • torch

    thanks mike! the rowers are usually okay. not unsurprisingly, the same cross-section of the population that fears running 5ks also fears rowing 5ks!
    AND with this as a segway, running diatribe time: people should be doing this WOD!!! It is an important part of the programming and a great baseline for judging your gains in ability. Certainly everyone that’s at all interested in CFE needs to do this!!! Your score will count as a time trial for a 5k, which then can be used to determine interval speeds, tempo speeds, goals, etc.
    If you are a manhattan person: 6 laps around Madison Square Park is a little shy of a 5k, but close enough. BK people: we have a variety of 5k courses.
    I definitely think doing this on your own on a preferred course is great. But, if you want to come in, it’d be great to see people do this in informal groups the same as any other WOD — enjoy the benefits of mutual motivation, etc.
    Last note: This will feel about the same as Cindy! It’s a ballpark 20 min oxidative exertion! 5ks hurt LESS than Fran. They hurt LESS than Barbara. They hurt less than a 1 RM Back Squat! Let’s stop being scared of them!!!

  • Hear, hear!
    What Torch said.

  • Zach Singer

    Had an amazing and educational weekend at the CF Nutrition Cert with Robb Wolf. Robb, as you all must know by now, if the CF morally sanctioned god of nutrition; he is owner/head trainer at Crossfit NorCal, a biochemist and researcher by training and has done work with Dr. Loren Cordain, author of The Paleo Diet, as you may know. Beyond that though, he is an all-around awesome, fun and down to earth dude who, admittedly, can geek out and blow you away with science, but can also bring it home at a level that is completely relateable and digestible for just about anyone. Between his self-proclaimed bad ass jokes and hookers & cocaine analogies, you are guaranteed to have a fracken good time at his Cert.
    I won’t go into too much of the detail from the weekend here (cause it can it a bit too science-y for a blog post), but if anyone is interested, feel free to get in touch with me on here or at the gym. I hope I’m not speaking out of turn on this next bit, but Gabe and Ryan were both at the Cert as well, and I can only imagine they’d be willing to offer their take-aways at some point if you approach them as well.
    And now something not so Paleo or Robb Wolf-approved (although he did mention a gluten-free beer that he is totally down with)…

  • Nick

    Hey Zach – any major take-aways re: zone vs. total paleo? Is Wolf anti-carb?

  • Gabe K

    Zach et. al,
    It was awesome. We learned a ton..but more than functional nutrition, which I suspect all three of us had a decent grasp of before we went, Robb provides great tools to help those of various personalities comply with an eating program. We learned a lot we’d love to share, I’m sure, but the biggest take-away for me is that nutrition and eating in general are a very personal thing, and for those that train/mentor others…you have to be fully tuned-in to the tendencies of that person.
    That said, I’d love to hash anything over with anyone…and I’ve already set my sights on a few of us to get us all doing a better job of nutrition.
    RE: Nick,
    I think the biggest take-aways (and these can be mostly determined through online research anyways) are that strict paleo eating can quickly lead to a natural zone proportion without ever trying. Zone, however, allows a heightened level of control over what you eat..and therefore empowers you to constantly tweak any single part of your diet and see what happens. Robb seemed to strongly encourage consistency at first (to establish baseline health and attention to your body) and then add/subtract foods/fats/carbs/whatever to find your harmony.

  • Gabe K

    And on the topic….
    Really? Are they smoking something? (wfs)

  • Kirk

    OK… CFE works.
    Just ran the 5k (thanks for the motivational e-mail Torch – even in the face of your insane time!)
    20:37 PR
    Last time was 21:45.
    1:08 faster today! – likely more as everyone running last time thought our course was a little short…
    As a guy who hates running, I take that 20:37 with great pride and thanks to Brian, Torch and the CFE posse.
    Also, special thanks to Anthony – even though he wasn’t here in Italy, I kept hearing him in the back of my mind saying “C’mon, Kirk!”. It kept me moving. That’s what I love about Crossfit!
    ** Out of curiosity, isn’t the 5k just over SEVEN (7) laps of Madison Square Park? **

  • Kelly

    Awesome job Kirk!!
    And, yeah, could someone clear up whether it’s 6 or 7 laps of MSP?

  • Zach Singer

    What Gabe mentions about personalities is definitely true, and is a big part of the Cert. Another facet to keep in mind is that the program that is right for you also depends on your fitness goals. Someone who wants to be a top competitor at the Games or some other elite level event is going to be pressed harder to adhere to a strict Paleo / Athlete Zone (athlete zone simply implying a modified ratio of protein to fat to carbs – happy to expand on this if interested), whereas someone who just wants to look, feel and perform better may not need such a strict weighing and measuring regimine.
    Nick: “any major take-aways re: zone vs. total paleo?”
    It depends how you’re defining total paleo, to begin with. This isn’t a term Robb really uses, but simply stops at Paleo (if I’m interpretting what you mean to be NOT weighing and measuring, but still eating Paleo prescribed food items?). The CF Nutrition standard line is to FIRST switch the quality of your food. Some people, even within CF, will argue that food quality isn’t that big of a deal, so long as you’re hitting your zone portions, but Robb really really really disagrees with this. For starters, see the following article, and just play around on Robb’s site a little.
    Beyond just eating for performance, Robb lays out a plethora of research and statistics highlighting the health benefits of eating Paleo, even if you don’t Zone. Some of this gets into science-y blood work tests and whatnot, but suffice it to say that he’s had clients make incredible health recoveries given the role of insulin and/or gluten (found mostly in wheat – look it up) in various diseases, including many endothelial cancers, osteoperosis, vampire disease (not sure the name – that was weird but cool), autoimmune diseases, liver failure, and more.
    In sum, first he wants everyone to eat high quality foods, simply because everyone will benefit from it (plus it’s generally easier than weighing and measuring). Most of his clients train just a couple days a week and eat really high quality food. No gluten, no dairy, etc. Paleo. Oh, and also, everyone should take fish oil. Everyone. It helps fight inflammation in the body (especially important for insulin resistant peeps). This is a really cool topic, so if you want to stop me in the gym, feel free. Just know this is UBER important in his opinion.
    For athletes that want that next level, then he would have you tinker with a Zone prescription and really be strict with your weighing and measuring. The ideal form of Zone, would of course be zone / paleo, wherein you still eat gluten / dairy free but follow your block prescritions. Once you enter the world of the Zone under Robb Wolf, things can get tricky.
    Here you get into things like cutting your daily carbs by up to 50%, replacing cut carbs with fat at a 3x multiplier, loading at post-workout meals to promote insulin sensitivity and recovery, and more. Again, as Gabe mentioned, this stuff is not one-size fits all. If you do it, you start base zone and tweak from there as needed. Happy to help with that, but to do so would require knowing a bit more about you.
    “Is Wolf anti-carb?”
    In short – ask me to expound if needed / wanted.
    Wolf is not anti-carb. Nobody in Crossfit is, as far as I’ve witnessed – we need carbs for energy and hormonal balance. Research has shown the impact of endocrinology, and in such findings we want glucagon-to-insulin optimization. This requires consumption of both proteins and carbs, eliciting a glucagon response and insulin response, respectively.
    Wolf is, however, anti-gluten. Anti-wheat, rye, bread, grains, spelt, etc. Gluten is a component of wheat that Wolf has found to be incredibly detrimental to the gut and digestion process. Some people have different tolerances to gluten – most people can sort of take it, but will perform better without it. Some people cannot eat it at all (gluten allergies) without feeling like they were smacked in the face with a manhole cover the next day.
    Back to work now — more later if desired.

  • Kelly

    Did he go into any differences/recommendations for women specifically? I’d like to chat with you guys about it if he did!

  • torch

    Killin it Kirk!!! Way to go!!!

  • sara

    Made up the lunges/pullups/situps:
    20:27… Estimated the length for lunges
    Then did some work on handstand pushups, pistols, and snatches
    Will run the 5k tonight… Totally dreading it

  • torch

    and to correct my earlier post, it’s 7 laps around MSP

  • Lt Gabe

    made up Nasty Girls as rx’d, 14:27
    I’ll be in NY till the 30th starting Wednesday. Afternoon WODs and BBQ here I come!

  • Gabe K

    You know where to find me with questions…but my recollection from yesterday is that, in general, Paleo foods and Zone portioning are universal…and they’re customizable…so you make it work for your needs, not the other way around.
    One example he did use when explaining some of the endocrinology stuff in the beginning pertained to pregneant women and the nature of gestational diabetes, and its persistence after labor.
    I also think that Robb’s opinion, and Matt who assisted him, is that target composition and weight using Zone/Paleo will never be as lean as you might like to be. These are diets meant to increase health and performance…aesthetics and a tight ass aren’t even within the realm of purpose for eating like this. As a result, I think some of the issues woman (I’ve heard) have on low/no carb diets can’t exist on paleo. You’re healthier and you will be leaner than you are now…but probably not as lean as you could be on a ketogenic or other no-carb deal. You’ll also be stronger, supposedly, so it’s again your preference on goals and what not.

  • Paul

    Played lacrosse over in Hoboken as a sub.

  • kj

    I want to play lacrosse as a sub! I also am actually looking forward to running this 5k, despite my mild fever and nasty throat/ear infection. I don’t, however, predict that my time will be anything worth bragging about.
    Torch, you amaze me. And Kirk, those are some impressive gains! I need more CFE in my life, clearly.

  • Ashleigh

    So I spent about 5 minutes trying to come up with a good excuse not to run tonight. I couldn’t think of one, so I’m actually going to do it. Damn.
    I’m going to have to trust that I will do my daily allotment of burpees at home today as well. I guess I’ll see how accountable/dedicated I really am!

  • jacinto

    Lt.Gabe are you going to be in Town for the 4TH of July?

  • Josh Rosenfield

    its going to be a wet one tonight.
    thats what she said.

  • Kirk

    Thanks, guys!
    I was pretty chuffed after the run (which is not how I usually feel after a run…)!
    I forgot to post the actual run as mapped out on mapmyrun for those running types who dig that kind of thing – I prefer the satellite options as you can see the river and the park just outside the UN System Staff College where I am currently conducting training.
    I was a bit concerned after reading the earlier posts regarding the accuracy of mapmyrun. However, some clever Italian running club has actually marked the trail along the river – every 100m for the first km and then ever km and 1.5 km after that. Sweet! All I had to do was run to the line that read 2.5 and then run back. As if it were that easy…
    Many thanks for sharing all the Wolf Zone/Paleo goodness!

  • Bad Sam

    It makes sense to me that paleo is a useful diet in that it’s particularly healthy, lots of vegetables, nuts, good stuff etc.
    However, for certain people/body types, it doesn’t work as far as providing enough nutrients to get stronger/improve performance.
    I’m talking ectomorphic type bodies such as myself. When I have tried paleo before it’s only resulted in more tiredness, less strength gains and constant hungriness.
    Bear in mind that I was trying to consume extra fat (3x or 4x blocks) while doing paleo. Including drinking olive oil from the bottle which sat under my work desk and guzzling almonds all day.
    The only time i’ve been able to constantly gain weight and strength, was while not doing paleo and drinking multiple big protein shakes + a bunch of milk every day.
    This is probably the same reason why people like Michael Phelps don’t do paleo, he literally burns too many calories to be able to get them back through eating in this style.

  • Jon S.

    9x around my block (approx 5k)
    about 24 minutes…
    Felt nice. Gonna start doing alot more of these as
    soon as it stops RAINING SO FRIGGIN’ MUCH.

  • Lt Gabe

    I dunno yet Jacinto. I have to go back to Virginia for a couple of days and am not sure where I’ll be for the fourth.

  • FYI, folks, tomorrow’s Rest Day Schedule, sneak-preview style:
    6, 7, 8am; 12:30pm: Instructor’s Choice
    6pm Lunges, Pull-Ups, Situps WOD
    6:30pm Black Box WOD
    7pm “Nasty Girls”
    8pm Black Box Skills
    Black Box WOD and Black Box Skills to be announced as soon as I know what they are going to be. A little birdie told me that the Black Box WOD is going to be another Qualifier WOD…

  • Zach Singer

    Bad Sam,
    Robb Wolf addresses exactly what you’re talking about, actually. I suppose I spoke a touch too vaguely at first, but you get a special section of tweaking paleo to fit your body / goals.
    SBWTBH – Skinny But Want To Be Huge
    To begin with, in a mass gain scenario like you might want to be in, you would first want to be at 5x fat or more, and potentially a higher block prescription as well.
    “The only time i’ve been able to constantly gain weight and strength, was while not doing paleo and drinking multiple big protein shakes + a bunch of milk every day.”
    Similar to what Rip says here – of course you should drink milk, all baby mammals drink milk. And you, sir, are a baby mammal.
    What’s going on here is that dairy, while providing protein, also flips every growth trigger in our bodies. This is why it is incomparable for nutritional development in babies of any species. So yes, if you are on a mass gain program, drink milk. GOMAD – it works. You might even tweak things in other areas too, and that’s sort of Robb’s whole point. Play with things and see what works for you.
    As for ‘the reason why people like Michael Phelps don’t do paleo’ – I’d argue that you’re probably a bit off base. The reason why people like Michael Phelps don’t do paleo is typically because they have ‘world-reknowned’ nutritionists telling them they need to carb load and live on a 60+% carb diet. All the while, they’re getting these carbs through massive stacks of pancakes and whatnot. This, actually, is the reason that people like Michael Phelps end up with numerous joint and bone issues – plantar fascitis, patellar tendinitos, bicipetal tendinitis, etc. There bodies are hot hot hot from constant inflammation induced by a super heavy insulin based diet. Insulin is a leading contributor to internal inflammation and can play a serious role in preventing recovery.
    Again, I’m not disagreeing that there aren’t benefits to be gained for certain people by straying from a ‘strict paleo’ diet, but rather making the point that body types are likely not the reason people like Phelps don’t do paleo or why it didn’t work for you. I would surmise that you could have tweaked it more and gotten your results. I would bet that even while straying from paleo by adding dairy, and simultaneously upping fat and increasing blocks, you would still benefit from other aspecs of a paleo diet, such as the elimination of gluten and stabilization of blood sugar levels through lower GL (glycemic load) foods. Remember, an athlete’s zone perscription is skewed to 17% protein, 23% carbs, and 60% fat. This doesn’t suggest that they reduce their protein or carb intake, but rather that the 5x fat multiple biases the caloric intake to the fats side of the equation. In some cases this is accompanied by reduction of carbs, yes, but that is a case by case modification.
    Specifically, the reason for this athlete zone ratio is that fat stores are a healthier and more efficient fuel source for the body. High insulin diets require massive carb loading and are often accompanied by hypoglycemia and the need to constantly eat because the heavy dose of insulin shuts off access to your cells — your body literally cannot get nutrients from the cells, and therefore you either eat again or your body begins eating itself and its muscle tissues.

  • Gabe K

    To simplify Zach’s point…and because I don’t like verbosity…and the use of the word verbose is..well…just that…
    Bad Sam,
    While there’s a lot of truth to your difficulty in gaining or maintaining weight on paleo…I think we should prod you a bit more before attacking you for generalizing an eating system.
    How much mass DID you lose on paleo?
    How did you generally feel on paleo…and if the answer is “sluggish,” did the increased fat mitigate that regardless of how inconvenient it was for you?
    Inherent to all this crazy talk, how did you feel before, during and after paleo?
    What did your first re-introduction of gluten and shit food feel like? If it felt great, you’re better than me (no surprise) and keep doing what feels right.
    To Zach’s dissertation, I think Robb Wolf of all the crack-pots at least agrees that you should find your own prescription using the loose tools he and others provide. There’s no right answer…but certainly plenty or “wrong” or less than optimal ones.

  • bad Sam

    My point in mentioning my own particular scenario is it’s not quite right to simply say that everyone can just jump on paleo/zone and have it be the perfect solution.
    I expect that if I ate three full chickens per day and a small sackful of almonds, I could do paleo/zone and fulfill my goals. However, that’s not practical and I found I was also hitting my ability to physically eat more, ie: feeling full to uncomfortable levels.
    I’m a believer that eating lots of dairy isn’t a good thing, ie: cow’s milk it meant for baby cows, not adult humans. However, it works as far as gaining mass, so it’s something I deal with.

  • kj

    Ran the 4-mile loop in 31:52.
    Approximate 5k pace is 24:41. Minimal splashing.
    I wish I was Torch.
    And I have 21 burpees to look forward to!

  • Reagan

    Black Box (124,124)

  • Sophie

    I suck at running and I always make excuses so I don’t have to run. The last time I did a 5k was maybe in October. Anyways, I ran today, 3.16 miles, so not quite 5k, in 27:00. I’m actually really proud of myself because I am usually right at 30 min. I reallllly need to work on my running!

  • Kurt

    Prospect Park loop: 21:11. Official distance, according to the park’s website is 3.35 miles or about 5.4km. This is a 43 second improvement since the last loop in May, but the pace is actually only about a 19:40 or so for a 5K.
    Re: Torch’s description of a 5K hurting less than 1 RM back squat: I am clearly not trying hard enough on my squats!
    Jokes aside, running is an important part of the program and it won’t get any easier if you skip the 5K days. Good on ya, to those who braved the wet and slogged through.

  • jacinto

    If anybody want’s to look Like Rip.
    drink a gallon of milk a day.
    that’s the (quote of the day)

  • juan

    We should start mapping these at different locations around the city and set up group run everytime the 5k wod comes along, make an outing of it.

  • jim

    made up the lunging WOD.

  • torch

    Dammit Jim, you know I’m specifically chasing you every time I do this! Why make us both work harder?!
    Great job!

  • Mike

    Subbed a 5k row today since I had never done one before.
    Very happy to finish under 20 min, and I know I can improve on this time as well. Thanks Court for the mobility warm up.
    Congrats to Ashleigh for getting kipping pullups today too!
    As a side note given all this food talk, I had to try out that chocolate covered bacon recipe the other day. I did cook the bacon a bit too much, but it still came out pretty good. I think using a slightly darker chocolate and adding some more milk when melting it would make it even better… maybe something to try another time.
    The Nutrition Cert sounds really interesting. I completely agree with the quality of the food being extremely important, both for taste and for health/performance reasons. Lately I’ve been trying to eat about 80-90% paleo + dairy, and while there is still some stuff in my diet that is not ideal, I’ve felt so much better in the past month or 2 since I’ve focused more on it. Its also amazing how crappy I’ve felt on or after a day when I’ve had too much grain and/or sugar.

  • Ashleigh

    Mike, you are the man…very good coaching! Finally got a legitimate kipping pullup today. Felt very nice.
    Don’t wanna talk about the 5k though.

  • Kelly

    20:33…didn’t feel great, my PR is about a minute faster.

  • Brian

    CFE 630p @ central park, columbus circle tomorrow

  • Ran from midtown to SoHo during the storm. The rain felt great! POSE-d the whole way, I am proud to say —-> I think my form was spot-on. I had a lot of FUN during this run, even though my left ear bud wouldn’t stay in my ear and I had this silly, way-too-warm jacket wrapped around my waist.
    Total distance = ~5.09K
    30:56 (my first timed 5K since starting Crossfit, possibly first timed 5K ever)
    not exactly a speed demon time, but not bad for dodging umbrellas and negotiating traffic lights
    In fact, I think I could have pushed myself harder on the last mile or so, if not throughout the run. Maybe was a bit too comfortable.
    1 1/2 hour yoga class post-run also felt fantastic
    Torch said he thought a 5K run was less painful than a 1RM back squat.
    5K run : back squat = apples : oranges
    tattoo : piercing
    Sophie – 3.16 miles is actually about 5.085K or so.
    I would like to go to CFE tomorrow, but I would also like to make up the “Nasty Girls” WOD from Sunday. Not enough unscheduled hours in the day to do both and I didn’t manage to get to the box today so I’ll be there tomorrow.
    Re the nutrition stuff:
    I would LOVE to talk with you about this stuff, Gabe and Zach.

  • Sophie

    Davi, you are right! For some reason I have always thought it was 3.2mi. I guess I am slightly faster than I thought!

  • Aaron

    Mike, great rowing
    22:46 5k row at NYU followed by 1×7 135# deadlifts just for fun.
    Doing this WOD at NYU (where my “I want to get fit” career began) really puts my 2.5 months of trying to kill myself at fight club–wait, I mean working out at the Black Box–in perspective. My previous PR for the 5k was beyond sorry, partly because I didn’t know how to push myself to my limits, and partly because I sucked a lot more than I do now. I now know what intensity means. I have a decent idea of my limits and areas for improvement (e.g. the set of all movements that are contained within Crossfit). I was able to shave a lot off my previous PR (for the 5k and the 2k) without even “trying”, and in general, I feel amazing! So, in conclusion, I have the beyond awesome coaching, and the ever supportive and welcoming community to thank for all my recent successes (the 5k is just the beginning or “a good point for reflection”)…THANK YOU!

  • Jessica L.

    I am also not a big fan of running, and have not run in months, and not consistently in years. I could not really get away from work, so I had to run on the treadmill. I did the 5K in running / speedwalking intervals and made it in 30 minutes.

  • Sara

    Holy crap jim! That’s ridiculous! Nice work! I rowed a 5k: 23:54