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      News — coach

      The Habit of Health - Written by Camzin Martin

      The Habit of Health - Written by Camzin Martin

      The Habit of Health
      Written by Camzin Martin

       

      It’s #BeachSeason and many of us (myself included this year) look at ourselves in the mirror and see a reflection of failed New Year’s Resolutions. Mine was to run every day, and let’s just say that hasn’t happened. Failing to create, implement, and maintain healthy habits is so common that the devout roll their eyes each year waiting for the flash to drain from the pan.

      So, while it may seem cruel to point out the deviation from the path a full seven months into the year, the point of this article is not to have a collective pity-party, but rather to make a commitment to the habits that create success today.

      My mom illustrates this point well. My mom is amazing, in her youth she was an incredible athlete, she held national titles in martial arts and was an accomplished runner. As a professional she achieved a level of success and renown as she was recruited from South Africa and able to afford her family the opportunity to live in the United States. As a mother, she raised two successful children with my father, and as adults we still have a close loving relationship with them. Along the way through chasing financial and familial goals health and fitness took a backseat, and poor diet and inactivity took its toll.

      In February of this year my parents moved out to Houston to be nearer to us and their grandchildren. Since moving, as a grandparent, my mother has made some new habits. She increased her sleep from approximately five hours a night to six. She began meal prepping her breakfasts, and has recently moved to meal prepping her lunches as well. She committed to working out under my supervision three times a week to now committing to three workouts a week at a local affiliate. As a result, she is losing weight and her bio-markers are moving in the right direction.

      She started small, and she started consistent. She committed to meal prepping her breakfast (as one giant egg-bake that she portioned out) and built from there. 

      Resolving to change your life and committing to an end goal is daunting. Resolving to make a small change and re-committing to do it in the beginning of each day is something we can all do.

      So, take your big goal from the beginning of this year and choose one habit, that if done consistently, will build toward your goal. Download a “been on the wagon for x number of days” app. Write your commitment on your mirror. Start. Each morning reaffirms that today you will honor your commitment. Don’t let tomorrow, or next week, or next month get in your head – just commit to today!

      In a month or so you’ll find that each today has amounted to a long list of todays, and the success underneath you has propelled you forward. You may find that the vice that plagued you is no longer even a consideration because denying it has simply become habit. Rinse and repeat with the next habit you want to create, and next year this time let’s look in the mirror and see the product of each daily commitment culminating in surpassing some goals.

      Hey! Whats in Your Tub? Written by: Kerry Moritz

      Hey! What's in Your Tub?

      Written by: Kerry Moritz

      I had That Tub in my kitchen for a long time—you know what I mean, the big plastic container of whey protein. For years whey protein powder has been a fixture in my life and in my fitness routine; we all know the benefits of a protein shake after a hard workout. But until American GAINZ cued me in to Tactical Recovery, there was one thing I didn't think about:

      What they did is prompt me to look at the scoop. So I did. The one in my plastic tub was around 40 grams, but it only contained 20 grams or so of protein. This was the first day I ever asked myself, “What's in the other 20 grams?” It wasn't all accounted for.

      I didn't think about it before because I trusted that whey protein isolate was simply good for me. This moment was surprising, because as a diabetic and a coach who is passionate about helping others, it is critical that I take a second look at what my clients and I are eating. It's part of me, my life and my work—passion to be conscientious and dedicated to health.

      This question became important to me. But after looking around, I wasn't able to get any good explanation of why I've had to consume countless grams of unknowns over the years along with my 20ish gram servings of protein. That was the moment when I understood the value of Tactical Recovery.

      I would never tolerate ambiguity in my training. I made the change to Tactical Recovery because I realized that the big plastic tub meant I was accepting ambiguity in my whey protein. I consume hydrolyzed whey protein isolate on a daily basis, and I have for years, and I plan to for many more years. It's important to me to know what I'm consuming, down to the gram. I respect that American GAINZ can track the source of every ingredient, and can track them to an American source. Of course I like those big-time BCAAs fortifications, and I like knowing their exact breakdown. It's an excellent product. Plus Tactical Recovery tastes great.

      But the real reason I've become a big fan of Tactical Recovery hydrolyzed whey protein isolate is because I trust it. I'm never going to spend another year consuming unknown fillers from unknown sources.

       

      The Dream Team - Written by Camzin Martin

      The Dream Team - Written by Camzin Martin

      The Dream Team
      Written By Camzin Martin

       

      EaDo Elite Blue finishes in 6th at the CrossFit Games South Regional closing the weekend out with some awesome scores, including a first place finish which held as a world record until it bested by CrossFit 808 in California.

      I had the honor and privilege of being on that team this weekend and it has been my best Regional experience to date. I’d love to share with you some of the journey there, because it has been a special one.

      Last season my husband and I moved with our little one to CrossFit EaDo where he assumed the role of Head Trainer and the Program Director of the EaDo Elite program. We were on the cusp of season starting and had a few new athletes move into the gym in the 9th hour. As a result, and with Connor not knowing the athletes very well, the team was decided based on Open results and the team that hit the field (while amazing athletes) hadn't had the time needed as a team to be well synced on game day, ending in 20th at the Regionals.

      Connor and co-director Shane Rojas made the determination that this year would be different. The team would be a true team. Slots designated well before the Open. Training together, doing the same programming, at the same time multiple times a week, and working on team-style events in addition to individual-weakness programming. The team would know one another's strengths, weaknesses, abilities, pacing, cadence, and mental game. So that's what we did. And the kicker was that team had to declare team. If you wanted to go individual that was awesome and the gym would be totally behind you, but then you'd be on your own roster with no option to take a team spot if you didn't make your goal.

      We all trained hard, but together. And we had a lot of fun. Each of us was assigned skill work to fix our holes and given cues and goals to maximize our strengths.

      In the Open we took a risk. EaDo has a very deep field of incredible athletes who are super fit, but have a weakness or two precluding them from making it to the Regional stage at this time as individuals. We wanted to honor their hard work and dedication and their shot rather than putting their work all year towards having the top 6 make it. So the Blue team had 8 people in it. The 6 team members (Kevin McEnery, Victor Sanchez, Dallas Henson, Sara Fish, Rhett Chase, and me) and our two amazing alternates (Tobi Showumi and Taylor Cooley). No room for error. No extra individuals. And we squeaked in. Keeping 6 people 100% for 5 weeks is no small task and with no fillers any weaknesses could have been a big liability. But as individuals pulled out of their respective teams we climbed into a tie for 14th while Sara received, and declined, her Individual invite to stick with the team, putting us in a qualifying spot.

       

      We kept training, kept having fun together, and this weekend did our very best. We PRed every workout from our training run through by an average of a minute. Sara did her 30 of the 60 HSPU quickly enough for a 10th place finish despite not being able to do two consecutive the previous year (she put in a LOT of work this year on those). On the snatch ladder (our team's collective weakness) everyone hit one or two more than in practice with Victor hitting his 1RM in the ladder at 245#. I got the 175# and finished the ladder, which was a big victory for me to be able to do so under that kind of pressure. Rhett pulled through for us on the running and OHS, Kevin on the snatches and deadlifts, Dallas on the HSPU and trio workout, and special mention to Victor for literally finishing out our weekend with a SPRINT on the legless rope climbs and thrusters.

      We surprised ourselves and although any of us would tell you we are somewhat disappointed to come so close and not make it, we were all smiling at the end. I'm less sore than I've ever been after a Regional and after my best finish, same with the Open. The EaDo Elite program is not always fun, nor is it always fancy-looking, but it works. But beyond that, the EaDo crew and the INCREDIBLE team camaraderie and commitment that they have fostered here is uncommon at best. I have been so honored to be on this team and so humbled to share the stage with these athletes.

      While it may be too early to say (because a team takes 6 people all making a commitment to one another before self) but I'm looking forward to working to be good enough to hold a place on the EaDo Team next year, because this is only the beginning.

      #MoveBetterMoveFaster

      Mental Toughness in Crossfit - Written by Jared Astle

      Mental Toughness in Crossfit - Written by Jared Astle

       Mental Toughness in Crossfit

      Written by Jared Astle

       

      In my experience as a competitive athlete in both gymnastics & Crossfit, I have found a common thread that proves to be critical for success in both, that is mental toughness.

      I have always felt that there are 6 proven keys to mental toughness. These keys can be broken down into smaller categories and therefore some sources may refer to 7 or 8, however for me, focusing on 6 has been the most effective.

       

      1)  Create SMART Goals - If I tell you to get from point A to point B but fail to properly define what and where point B is exactly, chances are you will never get there, after all, where is “there”? 

      This concept of defining goals needs to be applied to your mental game. If you don’t have a defined destination you are never going to feel successful or accomplished and at that point any progress towards your mental fortitude goes out the window. When making goals, ensure they are SMART;
        • Specific - What exactly do I want to achieve, “I want to place in the top 5 at Regionals”. Very Specific.
        • Measurable – Stating that you want to get “better” at HSPU is great, but how is that measured, what does “better” mean? A measurable goal would be, I want to be able to do 30 strict HSPU in 3 minutes.
        • Attainable - Being able to deadlift 800 pounds is probably not going to happen anytime soon. Now if I said, I “I would like to increase my deadlift by 10% in the next month”, now that is attainable. I want to be able to see myself as worthy of these goals, and develop the traits and personality that allow me to possess them.
        • Realistic - To be realistic, I strive to make my goals represent an objective toward which I am both willing and able to work towards. Being the strongest woman in the world is a tough one. Now you are the only one who can decide just how high to set your goal, I say as long as it represent progress, it’s a good goal.
        • Timely – A goal should be grounded within a time frame. With no time frame tied to it there’s no sense of urgency, and then can easily be lost.

        2)  Be Consistent - To be mentally tough you have to be consistently mentally tough. This may not seem like a measure of mental toughness, but look at it this way:You are in the gym and your workout calls for 10 reps. You are exhausted from the long day, you are 20 minutes in and you get done with 9 reps and say to yourself, “Oh that is good enough for today”, we all do it. It’s just one rep right? So the next day you walk into the gym and you see Joe finish the WOD in 4:35, there is no way Joe got that time, or that you are going to let him beat you. So you cut off a few reps here and you shorten your ROM there. You get a 4:33. Way to go. You beat Joe. You are the winner of the day at Crossfit Schmuckatelli. So if this behavior continues, what do you think the result is 1 year down the road? Well, assuming you only skip one rep a day on each movement you would have skipped a total of:   

         4 (avg. movements a day) * 260 (5 days/week) = 1,040 Reps

        1,040 reps! If those reps were a 250lb back squat, you missed out on 260,000 lbs of work.

        Now let’s talk about the mental damage you just caused yourself. This can occur one of two ways.

        • You consistently cut your ROM and shorted reps, when competition time comes you do the same thing but you are "no rep’d" and you end up stuck in the workout wondering why you suck so much. That thought is not mental toughness, but rather self destructive.
        • You MENTALLY realize you don’t have the capacity to finish the workout. Every time you quit on the last rep bears down on you. Yeah it was only the last rep, but guess what, you still quit, just without ever recognizing your action as quitting. So now you enter a judged competition and act like something must be wrong with you, because you never quit, lol.

        Bottom line, shortening your reps or cutting reps has the SAME MENTAL EFFECT AND FATIGUE AS QUITTING.

        3)  Acknowledge the Small Victories - Some would refer to these as ‘mini-goals’, I however prefer to call them “small victories”, for the simple reason, these are not your goals, but rather progress towards your goals. An example of this would be recognizing that being consistently mentally tough, and not quitting, is worth treating as a small victory and then should be celebrated! The human brain is a funny thing and it is hard to control. It doesn’t like adversity. It will find the fastest and easiest way out. That is human nature, we are lazy. So every time you force yourself to conquer over 100,000 years of heritage that is your victory, so celebrate it and reward yourself, eventually it will become second nature. 

        4)  Concentrate on You - Someone who is mentally tough does not worry about the people around them or how good they are. When someone who is training around you is in the zone and killing it, celebrate in their success, they deserve it. I often hear, “but you always PR, I want to PR”, my response, “So go do it”.  Don’t get fooled into thinking that PRs are flying around the gym like the golden snitch in a quiditch match and that you’re just too unlucky to snag it up that day. Be accountable and responsible in obtaining your goals.

        5)  Be Positive - Negativity is a cancer and it will spread through your mind within seconds. Bad reps and bad days occur; recognize them as such and move on. When those bad days happen, you have to find the few positives to learn from and then refocus. Even on bad training days, small victories do exist so think, if you can accomplish positives on a bad training day, think of what you can do on a good training day?

        6)  Focus on What You Can Control - You can’t change the plates being used, you can’t change the stupid standards, you can’t change the bearings on the bar. Focus on what you can control and the rest will take care of itself. Things outside of your control do happen; beating yourself up over it will not strengthen your mental game. Don’t let them deter you, learn from it, and learn what you can do in the future to overcome.

        Success is 85% mental, 10% Physical, and 5% uncontrollable or outside influence.

         

         

        Understanding Concepts - Written by Jenn Jones

        Understanding Concepts - Written by Jenn Jones

         

        Understanding Concepts

        Written by: Jenn Jones

        Athletes walk into a Box for the first time.  Nervous and excited, eyes wide, shaker bottle in hand ready for this new fitness experience. Everyone who drinks the cool-aid wants to experience the intensity, go RX’ed, throw-up on the floor and pass out after the spicy WOD.  What new athlete and most athletes forget in my humble coaching experience is “form follows function”.

        The core principles of why CrossFit coaches are coaches, is to help athletes move better and preserve and improve function of the body to provide health and wellness over a spectrum of life. You aren't going to sneeze and herniate your disk from the sneeze, its the 20 something years of sub-optimal movement patterns that have compromised the integrity of the disc and the sneeze is the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

        We understand you have goals as athletes, but we have to keep you healthy and pain free in order to get you there.  The “RX” workouts and weights don't really mean anything if you don't understand the best way to generate force, and preserve your joints. 

        Three things I cannot harp on enough for my new athletes are: 

        1. Knowing how to actually brace through the middle to protect your spine.  Back injuries can be devastating, so practicing core strength and stability is SO SO important.  It's a hard concept to master; to brace the mid-line so the spine doesn't flex while flexing at the hip.  Your spine houses your spinal cord that is connected to your brain.  I think we can all agree that it is a pretty important thing to focus on and to protect.  

         

        1. To generate the most power in the best positions you have to set your body up to have the most mechanical advantage. The hip and the shoulder are the main joints that we focus on, turning the limb outward, or “externally rotating” to create more stability in the joint capsules to be stronger under load.  Creating this torque and turn out of the joint creates a stable platform for the joint to drive from.  It also avoids pinching of tissues between surrounding bones.  It's a small change that can make a big difference in your mechanics.

         

        1. The way our bodies work using the biggest muscles and largest joints most maximally allows for the rest of the movement to follow thru the periphery of the limbs. If you can Clean or Snatch a bunch of weight because you are super strong, but you are pulling early with your arms, you are not even close to reaching your full potential. Coach Burgener says its best, "When your arms bend the power ends” Movement patterns matter!  The way you row is very similar to the way you clean and or snatch.  Everything builds!

          

        If you are truly involved in the Box to create the best version of you that you can be, LISTEN to your coaches.  They may SLOW you down and you might get the worst time in the class, BUT they are setting you up for longer success and movement down the road.  The longest term goal should be to be functional when you are 90+.  I know I don't want to pick anyone up off the floor or toilet because they can’t do it for themselves.