Up and up (Plus Affiliate Team Info!)

Try a FREE BEGINNERS’ CLASS: Mondays @ 6:30pm (women-only), Wednesdays @ 9am & 7pm, Saturdays & Sundays @ 10am. Click here for the schedule and to pre-register for a class.
#117 Tue/Thur @ 9pm, starts TONIGHT! (just 1 slot left!)
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#120 Mon/Thur @ 6:30am, starts May 10
#121 Mon/Wed @ 8pm, starts May 10

Rowing Workshop — Saturday, May 15th
Tuesday 100427
For time:
30 Handstand push-ups
40 Pull-ups
50 Kettlebell swings, 1.5 poods
60 Sit-ups
70 Burpees
James Hobart 10:02, Ben Bergeron 11:03, Matt Chan 12:20, Mat Frankel 13:05, Heather Keenan 13:15, Miranda Oldroyd 15:00. Post time to comments.
Compare to 080827.

QUESTION: If it were up to you, what would show up more often in the WOD and what would show up less often?
It’s official. We have now assembled our Black Box Affiliate Team. They will be competing in Albany at the Northeast Regionals. Please congratulate Avery, Christine, Sophie, Lenny, Mike K., and Mike M. (Also thanks to Hari and Sara for their managing roles in this team effort.) Stay tuned to the blog for more info on our team and how you can support them. In the meantime, if you’re thinking of going to Albany to cheer them on, click here for more logistics/info and post to comments about your plan. If our team can qualify at regionals for the 2010 CrossFit Games, this is the info on where/when they’d be competing. (P.S.: Sara will be competing as an individual at the NE Regionals and we wish her the very best of luck as well!)
Dumbbell snatch series (video)
Everyone sprints the last lap
On a ramp-age / Ramping up spring flavors
Determined to walk again, and using crossfit training to get there
Vegan turned master butcher changes the way American thinks about meat (via)
Working less at working hard–this time, on the rower
Congrats to Tim B. on his first muscle-up!


  • Scaling/commentary adapted from Brand X:
    Big Dawgs:
    as rx’d
    women 1 pood KB
    The Porch:
    20 Handstand push-ups
    30 Pull-ups
    40 Kettlebell swings, 1.5 poods
    50 Sit-ups
    60 Burpees
    women 1 pood KB
    20 Handstand push-up progressions
    25 Pull-ups
    30 Kettlebell swings, 1 pood
    35 Sit-ups
    40 Burpees
    women 25# dumbbell or Kettlebell
    15 Handstand push-up progressions
    20 Beginner or assisted pull-ups
    25 Kettlebell swings, 1 pood
    30 Sit-ups
    35 Burpees or squat thrusts
    Handstand push up progressions:
    A couple of other helpful hints:
    It would be not uncommon for a Big Dawgs to do this workout with unbroken sets. Keep that in mind when choosing your scaling!
    Handstand Push ups range of motion (ROM) requires that in the bottom position you touch the top of your head to the floor and in the top position your elbows are extended and your shoulders are activated. (If this is easy, start doing parallette HSPUs and gradually develop even fuller ROM.)
    Sit ups can be anchored or unanchored just make sure to note which you choose. What they cannot be is a crunch. The ROM for the sit up requires your shoulder blades to touch the ground and coming to a seated position. Make sure your butt stays on the ground if you’re looking to avoid dreaded tailbone-burn.
    Burpees. When you bring your feet and prepare to jump it is a good idea to:
    a. Jump your feet to the outside of your hands
    b. rock back on your heels
    c. Extend your Thoracic and Lumbar regions (straighten your back)
    You will find if you do this that you are in something that approximates the bottom of the squat. It is much safer and more efficient to jump from that position than the usual position people find themselves in.

  • Steve S.

    17:46 (2 abmats for HSPUs)

  • Steve-O

    Wow, that’s a difficult question to answer. There are so many areas that I can improve in, rowing, handstands, squats, OHS, and dead lifts just to name a few. If I had to choose I’d like to see more snatch work/OHS work and more burpees and wall ball shots(the latter two just kill me every time). I don’t know if I’d like to see anything less, most of what we do is important for the all around fitness that crossfit gives us.

  • brendan m.

    I think the answer to this question varies depending on the fitness level and goals of the individual, and it really speaks to my problem with the “one WOD fits all” approach.
    I’d consider myself an intermediate when it comes to most disciplines in crossfit, and I’d like to one day be advanced. I am of the opinion that my biggest limiter is strength. Following the mainsite WOD as a beginner or intermediate athlete requires scaling. I’m willing to bet the top crossfit athletes didn’t get where they are today by doing scaled workouts until they could do them RX’d. They most definitely have either a background in strength training (squats, deadlifts, press, bench press, power cleans, etc.), or they do supplemental work with these lifts.
    I started doing metcons (e.g. Cindy, Barbara) on my own 2.5 years ago, cleaned up my diet, and lost nearly 30 lbs. I could do 20 rounds of Cindy, but couldn’t squat 135# 5x. After 4 months on my own, I started coming to CFNYC 1-2 times a week, learned the slow lifts, and starting supplementing 5×5 squats and 1×5 deadlifts once a week at an outside gym. In another 4 months, my 5 rep max squat went from 135-205, my 1 rep deadlift from 200-285. My metcons improved across the board, and I could do more WODs as RX’d.
    Would I have seen the same improvements if I had been following the 3-on/1-off schedule and mainsite WODs? I don’t know, but my gut tells me no. I think strength is an all too common weakness for crossfitters, and I think the mainsite programming doesn’t do enough to address this weakness.
    So, yeah. Back squats.

  • Emily

    any good ideas for HSPU sub? still can’t go overhead in a workout with my shoulder. too nervous to try going off a box for that many reps.

  • chris

    heavy slow lifts could show up more often. running could show up more often, at least as a way to force me to run more…..

  • jenn

    17:28 (3 abmats, purple band, anchored sit-ups)
    Did 5 unassisted pull-ups at first, then decided I didn’t want to rip my hands up again, so went to the purple band. I figured since I wasn’t doing full HSPU I could scale. I know, I’m a punk.

  • Hari

    “Would I have seen the same improvements if I had been following the 3-on/1-off schedule and mainsite WODs?”
    Here is some interesting data on the 3-on-1-off versus some alternatives. In one year, assuming you don’t miss other than on your predetermined rest days:
    3-on-1-off: 274 WOD’s
    2-on-1-off: 243 WOD’s
    5 days per week: 261 WOD’s
    4 days per week: 209 WOD’s
    Modified 3-on-1-off: If you want a particular day of the week off (e.g., Sunday), never come in on a Sunday, even though 3 out of 4 Sundays will be a scheduled WOD: 235 WOD’s

  • Mike Mishik

    Need more of these: snatches, thrusters, ring dips, squat cleans, running
    If it were up to me though every wod would be box jumps, double unders, burpees on repeat for about 30 minutes

  • Bryce

    More OHS, olympic lifts, and pistols. Less handstand walking and inverted ring holds; I’m not convinced these are functional movements defined as moving a large load, a long distance, and quickly.
    Regarding supplemental strength training, I know it has helped me. The volume and weight of 5,3,1 strikes a right balance of strength work while still leaving enough for me to do a WOD with intensity. I think mainsite would benefit from specifically programming in a strength component similar to CF Football’s combination of Strength WOD and Daily WOD.
    Moreover, “There is plenty of time within an hour session to warm up, practice a basic movement or skill or pursue a new PR or max lift, discuss and critique the athletes’ efforts, and then pound out a tight little couplet or triplet utilizing these skills.” Says Coach Glassman

  • Craig F

    Definitely strength (slow lifts, oly lifts)
    Maybe this is as good a time as any to ask something I’ve never really heard the answer to:
    Have the trainers/owners at CFNYC given thought to doing programming that is different than the mainsite?
    Even something like having a Starting strength class time, or something that is an alternative to mainsite with more strength?

  • Adam R

    I agree with the need for more strength work — for me, the lack of strength holds me back during a lot of WODs, even when I drastically scale down. Some of that is basic strength, and some lack of technique (as in the clean+burpee workout from a few days ago).
    I notice that whenever the mainsite has a rest day, CFNYC programs a metcon WOD. Would it be possible to do a strength WOD on rest days? Even something as simple as deadlift or squat, 5×3 or 5×5 or whatever.
    Anybody have any recommendations for supplemental strength training routines? Bryce mentioned 5,3,1 — how often do you do it, and with which exercises?

  • Bryce

    Adam R,
    Here’s a link on Wendler’s 5,3,1. I don’t do bench press in the program and try to only do the lifts on days 1 and 3 of the 3 on/1 off cycle. This way I’m doing extra lifting the day after a rest day, when I’m fresh, as well as the day before a rest day, to ensure my body has time to recover. Credit goes to Jeff and Justin for turning me on to this. Chris Spealler does this too.
    Also, if anyone is looking more material, the Crossfit Strength Bias article is a great read. The thesis is that one doesn’t have to abandon crossfit programming completely and pursue a separate strength program to get strong. You can have both a 300lb back squat and a 400 FGB score.
    Email me at brycegreenstein@gmail.com if you want the article.

  • Adam R

    Thanks Bryce, I was able to download the CFJ article. I’ll read that and the 5/3/1 piece too. If Spealler does it, it’s got to be good.

  • Matt K

    Congrats Tim! Now 30 for time!

  • Tim B

    Adam R-
    Also check out the 603 PTP, did it a few weeks ago and had some gains with it

  • mike r

    I would like to see more WOD’s with running 200-800 meter intervals. I would like to see less skipping rope.

  • Rickke

    16:06 Rx’d
    Show up more: ditto on more strength work, sprints
    Show up less: 30 min AMRAPS, WODS that contain movements that should not be done for time (e.g. turkish get-ups, snatch balance, etc.).
    Great work, Tim!

  • Rickke

    And congrats to the Affiliate Team! Looking forward to cheering for you all and Sara in Albany. I’ll probably drive up on Friday morning if others would like to join. Has anyone decided on a particular hotel?

  • Josh R

    If I could choose one exercise see more of, it would be rowing. I also wouldn’t mind seeing more kettlebell work, especially on the heavy side. And I agree with everyone else that strength training never hurts.
    If I could choose one exercise to see less of, I think it’d be handstand push-ups. They just don’t seem like the most efficient way to work those muscle groups. And I understand the benefit of the gymnastics component to these workouts – balance, coordination, etc. But for HSPUs, you basically miss out on those benefits if you scale them, right?

  • Seth

    Tim- great job.
    Rikke- you crushed it today. It gives me inspiration to go faster.

  • Sara

    I agree that strength work is lacking in main site programming. I had completely plateaued in that area until I started following OPT programming and am now hitting a lot of pr’s . I think there is too much use of 1 rep max in main site as opposed to actually working more in the 4-6 rep range. We follow main site programming for many reasons which Hari, Josh, and Court can elaborate on and I think it’s a great thing for us to do. In my opinion, there is almost nobody at the box who needs to go on starting strength. If you are weak, you need to take the initiative to do some of your own personal work before classes begin. For example, Bryce gets to class 30 minutes early every single day and does some strength work… I would love to see a lot more people do this. If you are someone who wants to get stronger but still follow main site programming, send me an email at sara at crossfitnyc dot com and I’ll make sure one of our coaches responds to you with suggestions.

  • Mike K

    I also think the strength component has been lacking a bit lately, and that seems to be a common problem that holds people back in a lot of WODs.
    I will agree with Sara that supplementing some strength work is the better way to go. I have done this myself with CFFB lately and have set some PRs with weight as well as feeling faster on metcons. Some BK members add strength work beforehand as well and have seen good progress.
    One thing to keep in mind is that supplemental strength work should be just that – supplemental. It should be getting you quality reps with full range and good form. It should not be pushing max weights everyday to set a new PR, as that will eventually burn you out for the WODs.
    Just like any other goat, it only gets better when you work at it, and strength is as much a skill as anything else we do.
    I would also like to see some more barbell/kettlebell complexes. Those usually make for fun WODs.

  • Leslie

    I love wods like this– lots of different exercises!
    scaled 20/30/50/50/50
    been able to do three unassisted pullups each day before
    work out!
    Nice to see you Carlos. Tennis soon.

  • Bryce

    14:44 rx’d
    Thanks for the kind words, Sara. HQ must read the blog. Go heavy and keep get the elbows up tomorrow.

  • Emily

    subbed push-ups, ring rows, kb swings to shoulder w/12 kg (should have done 16 kg)
    would like to see more running. seems to be a skill that many crossfitters don’t work on (myself included, lately…)
    would like to see less WODs that take 20+ min to complete….
    congrats on the pull-ups leslie! keep workin on those double unders, and those will come quicker than you think! 🙂

  • Jeff

    More inverted burpees or anything involving handstand attempts. If you’re a beginner, then the ability to kick up to the wall should be a top priority on par with learning to kip. Getting to the wall opens up so many opportunities for scaling, progressions and other exercises that just aren’t available if you’re still doing pike push ups from a box. Being able to kick up proficiently makes it possible to do static holds, HSPU negatives, restricted ROM HSPU (i.e. scaling with AbMats), band-assisted HSPU, HS walking, freestanding, cartwheels and handsprings.
    More back squats. Back squats rarely ever appear in metcon WODs.
    More OHS. I’ve noticed that a lot of people have a hard time maintaining proper form and depth.
    More snatches. This is a tough technical lift that requires a lot of practice and surprisingly doesn’t come up as often as expected.
    More sprints. Like CF Football.
    I could keep going. For instance, I’ve also noticed that it’s not uncommon that some people either can’t snatch/clean to the bottom of their squat, or they’re lifting more to their power position. Or they aren’t dropping fast enough to achieve full lockout while jerking.
    Like Adam R, I think using a rest day for lifting practice or skills work (not for time) might be a refreshing change of pace from metcons.
    Less? Maybe less pull ups? I’d just replace those with more horizontal pulling like supine or inverted rows.

  • lenny

    Workout at Crossfit hardbodies ( yes that’s the name) in Port St Lucie, Fl. Ascending ladder of squats w the 45 lb bar I did 25 min. That was enuf. Besides wanting to see more bicep curls in my workouts, I agree there needs to be a strength aspect to the workouts. Bench, squats, DL , something followed by a short metcon of 10-20 minutes. That would b ideal to me. Again more biceps.

  • Mike Mishik

    13:40 rx’d

  • Jonathan P

    19:33 w/ 2 ab mat
    I plan on doing the supplemental strength sessions, but I still think it would be better for that kind of work to show up more in the structured WOD setting, because the metcons are almost always less technical, and so it might be more logical to do the strength workout with more instruction, and then stay late if time’s up to do a shorter metcon. I also kinda liked the timed strength sets that were scored by weight but were still timed. It looked like 10 sets up 2 of, say DL or back squat, with x seconds in between. They settle in between the workout types but seem to have been ignored of late.

  • Lisa

    I would love more strength workouts. I already run plenty. I need to work more on O lifting skills. I can work on pull ups and dips myself before or after WODs as they are a personal goal but love when barbel-Related workouts show up.

  • Jai

    I’d love more strength training, will be emailing Sara shortly.