Introducing…the Runaways

Run. Lift. Repeat.

  • Struggling to increase your mile pace?
  • Need a boost for the finish line?
  • Are you a beginner and want to finish your first 5K?

STRENGTH TRAINING IS THE ANSWER. Come check out The Runaways: 

It’s a 12 week strength and conditioning program that includes three running workouts a week and two strength days a week. Lifting will be specifically focused on strengthening weaknesses common to runners. It starts January 14, with strength training taking place on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 8am at the gym. Running assignments will be given out and completed outside of the gym.

$139 a month for 3 months or pay in full for only $375. Call 850-376-2362, email kelley@nicevillestrength.com or check out nicevillestrength.frontdeskhq.com for more details.

Get ready, get set, let’s run!

Going Away for the Holidays?

Over the river and through the woods to Grandmother’s house we go! With the holidays upon us, a trip to Grandma’s is warranted, especially if her cooking is delicious. The problem is Grandma probably doesn’t have a set of bumpers and a bar just laying around for deadlifts and cleans and snatches (unless she’s this lady). When you can’t be up in the gym working on your fitness, how are you supposed to get your sweat on? Bodyweight exercise to the rescue!

Bodyweight exercises are the bomb. They’re free, effective at building muscle, and can be done anywhere. Additionally, there are so many, you could do a different one every day for a month and still come up with new possibilities. Workouts can be as long or as short as you’d like them.

There are a few places you can go to get ideas on what to do:

  • Some smart folks over at Breaking Muscle have come up with seven cycles of bodyweight workouts in downloadable pdf’s that promise to get you strong with minimal equipment and no more space than a yoga mat. Download and print a copy to take on your trip. Pick and choose workouts as needed.
  • If you’re the creative type and like making up workouts on your own, but keep picking the same exercises over and over again, Greatist has come up with an illustrated list of 50 bodyweight exercises you can do anywhere. Randomly choose 5 exercises to cycle through over 20 minutes. Mission accomplished!
  • Maybe you’re the watch and learn type. Nerd Fitness has a beginner bodyweight workout (complete with milk jugs) that shows you exactly what to do with an instructional video. Watch and learn and then apply!
  • Back before this CrossFit thing really exploded, the awesome team over at CrossFit LA came up with a bodyweight resource guide. It includes bodyweight workouts as well as workouts requiring minimal equipment like rings and a pullup bar. There are 23 pages of information included. You’re bound to find a workout you’ll enjoy.

The point of getting out of town is to break out of your normal routine. This includes your daily training regime too! If you want to work out while you’re away, consider one of the options above. Maybe Grandma will join you!

Welcome to Row-vember!

Reflecting on the weekend, I realized how much our members love rowing. Just take a look at some of these faces:

I LOVE ROWING!

I LOVE IT MORE!

I LOVE IT THE MOST!

Can you feel the love?

What better way to embrace this affection for rowing than to complete a rowing challenge for the entire month of November (heretofore known as “ROWVEMBER”)? How many meters can we row together from the 1st to the 30th?

Our goal is to reach 300,000 meters by the end of the month!! Can we make it? Will we beat it?

Some rules:

  • Every meter counts: warm ups, cool-downs, workouts, and everything in between. If the rower is registering meters, they will count towards our grand total.
  • Every member rows: we’re looking for 100% participation here! That means kids too. There are no free rides.
  • Every meter gets recorded: there will be a dedicated white board showing how many meters have been accumulated and how many more we have to go to reach our goal.

We have a few days before the challenge begins. Do you know what you should set the damper at? What’s the best stroke rate? Learn a little from this article:  http://www.concept2.com/news/debunking-myths-damper-setting-stroke-rate-and-intensity

I’m excited to see where we finish!

3, 2, 1…ROW!

 

Change…It’s a Good Thing

As we move into our 12th month of business thanks to some pretty great members, we have some exciting new changes in the works! Read on to get the inside scoop.

The Comeback Kids: The Crossfit Kids and Teens program has been revamped to offer our kids (and their parents) more flexibility throughout the year. We are going to be offering 6 and 8 week sessions instead of ongoing kids classes. Our next session starts September 9. Sign up before the sessions get full!

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VISA – It’s Everywhere You Want To Be (including our gym!): Starting September 1, we are going to be rolling out a gym membership system that will handle all class scheduling, like sign ups and check ins, as well as payments to include credit/debit card transactions. With this system, we are going to be offering MORE membership options. We are hoping to make this transition as easy as possible, but ask for your patience as we iron out any difficulties that may arise. We will be posting more guidance about the transition as we get closer to our ‘Go Live’ date. Until then, it’s business as usual!

This Isn’t Good-bye, It’s Until Next Time: On a sad note, we had to say goodbye to one of our coaches that has been here since almost the beginning. As many of you know, Kathy PCS’d to Washington DC. She has been a tremendous help to us, providing awesome coaching to all of you, but she has been a trusted friend as well. Short of tying her down and not allowing her to leave, we had to let her go! Luckily, we can harass her on Facebook and show her what she’s missing!

Unfortunately, we are losing another coach as the summer draws to an end. We hope everyone has gotten to meet Jay (aka T-hoe) while he’s been here for the last month or so. It has been nothing short of a blessing to have him join us this summer. Not only is he a great coach, he has an amazing attitude and spirit. The video below pretty much captures “T hoe”. We wish him the best of luck in his adventure overseas and expect him to drop in for a visit when he’s stateside!

As always, please let us know if you have any questions. Thanks for being a part of our gym!

 

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Calling All Kids!

Crossfit Kids & Teens begins the week of September 9:

  • Monday & Wednesday 4pm Junior Varsity (grades 1-5)
  • Tuesday & Thursday 4pm Varsity (grades 6-9)

Class sizes are limited to 10 participants – REGISTER NOW!

$99 for 6 weeks 

Need more details? Contact Coach Kelley at 850-376-2362.

How to Improve a Child’s Performance During Sport: Weightlifting

As a fellow parent, I understand how easy it is to think, “Hey, my child plays basketball. To get them better at basketball, they need to play more basketball”. While adequate sport specific training is important, this could not be further from the truth. Studies show that children and youth that focus on only one sport without additional training or taking a break from that sport every now and then is more susceptible to overuse injuries. Sorry folks, no college wants to recruit an athlete who has over trained in their sport, let alone one with existing injuries, no matter how good they are on the court, field or track.

So, what should your athlete be doing? Weightlifting.

Why?

  • To Increase Strength & Power
  • Improve Athleticism
  • Alter Metabolism
  • Improve Range of Motion
  • Make the Athlete More Durable (less chance for injury)
  • Strengthen the Core
  • Improve Anaerobic endurance

What sports will weightlifting help to improve?

  • Any ground based sport
  • Any sport requiring explosive movements
  • Any sport requiring core stability
  • Any sport that places great stress on the skeletal structure
  • Any sport requiring enhanced grip strength
  • Any sport that would benefit from explosive movements late in the competition

As you can see, your child can improve in ANY sport that they are participating in by adding weight training. We offer individual and group/team training. Contact us today to get your athlete started.

World Wide WOD Coming August 10

Have you been up in the gym just workin’ on your fitness? August 10th is your chance to put your skills and your strength to the test. Join thousands of other competitors for a one day, three wod blowout!

You can register in one of three divisions: Beginner, Scaled Competitor, or Rx Beast. In addition, Masters will be able to compete at a Rx or Scaled level. Workouts have been released and include several different movements. You can check them out here (click on the News tab).

Are you in? Register at: http://www.thegaragegames.com/events/world-wide-wod-global-aftermath/. Remember, friends don’t let friends waste their fitness. Come strut your stuff!

Finding a Great Coach

WHAT MAKES A GOOD COACH? COMPLETE DEDICATION. –George Halas

 

From the outside looking in, some may think that I am in the gym business. But the reality is I am in the coaching business. I am not selling a place to work out or even CrossFit training. I am selling coaching. Every day, every workout, every consultation is about quality coaching.

Do you know what quality coaching looks like or what it entails? I’ve been in the coaching business for eight years now and I definitely have some opinions about coaching! A good coach is dedicated to the results of their athletes. Furthermore, a good coach is dedicated to excellence within their craft. Is your current or prospective coach dedicated to these goals?

With a lot of people selling coaching these days, I think it’s important to investigate some specific areas of a coach’s practice.

PROGRAMMING. If you are paying for coaching that is of the training variety, good programming should come with it. At any given moment, you should be able to ask the coach the purpose of the warm up, mobility drills, and exercises of the prescribed workout. If they can’t tell you, find a new coach!

Any average Joe (or Jane for that matter) can write a workout that will make you tired and possibly want to puke. Make no mistake, I can write a program that will kick your ass seven different ways to Sunday. But, is that going to help you reach your goals? Hard isn’t necessarily good. Programming should be focused on getting you results.

MECHANICS, CONSISTENCY, THEN INTENSITY. If practice makes perfect, what does poor practice do? In the short term, it creates poor movement patterns which will eventually have to be un-learned. In the long term, it can lead to injury. When you are looking to hire a coach, do they focus on the mechanics for the requisite amount of time based on YOUR ability? Is there a push to get you to go harder and faster from the get go? Good coaches focus on laying a solid foundation in order to get results over the long haul.

LEARNING. At the risk of sounding like a complete Little Miss Mcbraggypants, obscene is the only way I can describe the amount of money I spend on the pursuit of knowledge. I attend at least 3-4 training events each year to up my game as a coach. Surprise: there is a whole lot to learn outside of CrossFit! Ask any potential coach what was the last conference they attended. Also ask them about their philosophy of continuing education, in general. The best coaches stay abreast of the latest research and training techniques in order to get their clients results.

MEET PEOPLE WHERE THEY ARE. Creating a balanced lifestyle to include a regular fitness routine and good nutritional habits doesn’t happen overnight. It’s a process. Some people are going to be further along in their journey than others when they walk through that door. Is there a push to get you to adopt a completely different diet? Is your prospective new coach telling you that you have to work out every day at their gym? The reality is you may or may not be ready for either of those lifestyle overhauls. A good coach recognizes where each individual is at and coaches them at that level.

If you are relatively new to the world of strength and conditioning or a seasoned athlete who’s ready to take it to the next level, a good coach is priceless. Do yourself a favor and take the time to find a great one!

Do you agree with the traits I’ve outlined above? Did I leave something off the list? Share your thoughts as a post in comments!

Author’s note: The quote at the beginning of this post is attributed to George Halas. Papa Bear Halas was a legendary coach. He also played a large role in defining Sunday afternoons in America throughout the 20th and 21st centuries. He has often been described as the “heart and soul” of “Da Bears”.

 

Willpower

Have you ever thought, “if only I had more willpower, I would have this body?” Certainly, the images on Pinterest tell us so. Here’s a few of my favorites:

willpower_obstacles

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The only thing standing between you and a lean, ripped, toned body is your willpower! Right? Wrong!!

I imagine most of us feel like this guy:

Don't. Eat. the. Dog!

Don’t. Eat. the. Dog!

Willpower is a finite resource. We exercise self-control every time we get out of bed even though we don’t want to, avoid hitting our obnoxious co-workers, and keep our cool in Walmart when they only have one lane open at 5:30pm. (They really don’t know the store will be packed then?) And, yet, we’re going to rely on willpower to get us the body of our dreams.

Several food challenges, paleo or otherwise, focus on an all or nothing mentality in regard to nutrition. This often feels like an exercise in willpower. There’s several rules to follow and it’s filled with restrictions. At its core, this is deprivation and it either feels like a virtue (if you can do it) or a punishment (if you do it grudgingly). Ultimately, this takes eating away from our physiological needs and gives it the power to change our feelings and our lives.

Once eating becomes a psychological pursuit, especially if we focus on deprivation and restriction, any sort of disruption (stress from work, a variation from plan, relationship difficulties, etc.) can lead to “out of control” eating. If your fail-safe is willpower, this can get ugly – fast.

So, you vow to do even better next time. More restrictions, more rules, more pins on pinterest for motivation! Here comes the feast-famine cycle. Maybe you create elaborate meal plans, maybe skip meals and then binge; probably beat yourself up and promise to do better. Unfortunately, none of this works. The mindset and practice of restriction can lead to overeating and subsequent weight gain. You can “diet yourself fat”!

Are you caught up in this vicious cycle?cycle

Do you deny yourself certain foods, but then rebound later on? Do you engage in all or nothing thinking? How’s that working for you?

Why not try a different strategy? If your goal is long term body transformation, it starts with habit based nutrition. Join our course, Lasting Lean, for six weeks to learn and adopt lean eating habits.  We are going to work together everyday through a google group: learning and applying lessons, identifying challenges and implementing strategies, and relying on one another for some good old fashioned accountability. This isn’t about changing your diet for a fixed amount of time, it’s about learning how to incorporate a healthy diet into your life. The course is limited to just 10 participants and the cost is $40. Registration opens at 8pm on Wednesday, April 10. Email me at yvette@nicevillestrength.com starting at 8pm on Wednesday to secure your spot.

The course begins on April 15. Are you ready to create lasting change?

 

How Loose is Your Goose

Triple Extension - I has it.

Triple Extension – I has it.

Crossfit is a sport that requires virtuosity in many movements. While a certain amount of mobility around our joints is a good thing, we also want a certain amount of stability as well. Do you know where you should be mobile vs. where you should be stable?

THE JOINT BY JOINT APPROACH

The joint by joint approach was originally popularized by Mike Boyle and you can read the entire article here. Gray Cook expanded on the concept here. Since they are both super smart dudes, I can’t add much to their approach. However, I can summarize with the best of them, so read on for a quick and dirty version.

First, it’s important to understand the difference between stability and mobility. Stability is the ability of a joint to not move in the presence of potential change while mobility is the range of motion around a particular joint. Some joints require more mobility while other joints require more stability. There are even a few joints that require both stability and mobility.

If we take an oversimplified look at our joints from the ground up, we can identify an alternating pattern of mobility and stability:

Toes: mobile

Feet: stable

Ankles: mobile

Knees: stable

Hips: mobile

Low Back: stable

Upper Back: mobile

Shoulder Blades: stable

Shoulder Joint: mobile

Elbow: stable

Wrist: mobile

Hand: stable

Fingers: mobile

Pretty cool, huh? However, it isn’t always so clear. Think about a knee. It is supposed to bend and extend. When the knee goes inward too much or outward too much, problems are created within that joint. Yes, the knee needs to be mobile. However it needs to be stable enough to stay within the proper plane of movement which it is intended for.

So, what happens when a joint isn’t stable enough? “If the body doesn’t stabilize correctly, it will figure out another way to get stability: it’s called stiffness.” (Gray Cook). Hmm, who’s woken up with a ‘stiff’ lower back? I’m pleading the fifth!

The hip and shoulder are two more examples of joints that require simultaneous stability and mobility. These joints can be immobile due to lack of flexibility and lack of motion and unstable due to weakness. In the case of these joints, they require strength and mobility in multiple planes. The shoulder blade is the stable base that allows a mobile shoulder to work.

Why is all of this important? Generally, if you have a joint that is not mobile enough to carry out the movements you ask it to, you place the onus on a stable joint to do the work. Knees bear the brunt of tight ankles and the low back can try to accommodate tight hips and upper backs. This often leads to injury. And we all know, injuries are no bueno!

Are you working out right now and suffer from a low back that’s tight all the time? How about stiff shoulders? Do you know specific exercises to address these issues? Set up an appointment to get assessed and learn how to correct these issues before they give you serious trouble!

NOTE: Photo Credit: Mendosa