Monthly Archives: November 2007
Nov 30th, 2007

Get off the Crack!

Nicole Carroll and Jolie Gentry at the Oakland Fire Certification

Nicole Carroll CFHQ’s superstar athtlete and trainer, and Jolie Gentry, SWAT member and winner of this year’s CrossFit Games both follow the Zone. For increased performance, fat loss, and general health and well being we cannot stress enough the beauty and efficacy of Zone eating.

If you are thinking about changing the way you eat to optimize performance or to change your body composition, we suggest that you send us a food journal that documents one week’s worth of eating. Once we have a weeks worth of food logging, we can sit down and talk turkey!

Here is an excerpt from Nicole Carroll’s CFJ article entitled Getting off the Crack”

I knew CrossFit prescribed the Zone diet so I bought the books, read them, got my measly block prescription and tried the diet. The deal I made with myself was that for two weeks I would weigh and measure precisely. If after two weeks I wanted to go back to eating the way I was before I could. No guilt, just an experiment.

Four weeks into the Zone diet, I was stronger and faster than I had ever been. I had lost fat and gained muscle. My benchmark workout times decreased, and my pull-up numbers increased. I hit PRs in deadlift, back squat, and push jerk. I had more energy, recovered more quickly, and could push harder more often. Furthermore, I was happier and more emotionally balanced. I woke up feeling good. Best of all, I felt sharper. The tiny bit of hunger that remained kept me on an edge that I have come to appreciate tremendously. I can only describe it as a state of readiness, of feeling honed physically and mentally…

Zone Basics:

Post your questions, comments, experiences and criticisms about the Zone to comments.

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Nov 29th, 2007

It’s the Sugar


Sugar grains magnified to show their crystalline structure (image taken from Wikipedia)

There’s been some recent discussion at CFO regarding dietary cholesterol (the cholesterol you eat) and its supposed effect on serum cholesterol (the cholesterol that ends up in your bloodstream).

Conventional wisdom on the topic (both medical and mainstream) suggests that eating foods high in cholesterol (generally animal fats) leads to high blood cholesterol levels, which in turn leads to heart disease. This view has been advocated by the medical establishment since the 1950s.

But there’s an ever-growing body of evidence that’s come to the fore in the last decade or so that turns this theory on its head. According to this minority of scientists and writers swimming against the (main) stream, cholesterol is not the cause of heart disease, nor is a high level of cholesterol–by itself–necessarily descriptive of anything (good or bad).

The most prominent example of this new school of thought is Uffe Ravnskov’s The Cholesterol Myths, where Dr. Ravnskov shows that cholesterol is vital for cell maintenance and that there’s no evidence in the medical literature or otherwise that elevated cholesterol levels lead to heart disease.

Dr. Ravnskov’s cause was bolstered by Anthony Colpo in his book The Great Cholesterol Con. Colpo, just as Dr. Ravnskov does, lays out a compelling case against the cholesterol-as-devil theory that’s been spouted by the mainstream for so many years.

And now Gary Taubes has written a landmark book titled Good Calories, Bad Calories (which I’ve just ordered) that apparently demonstrates once again that eating fat and having a high cholesterol levels do not lead to heart disease. He takes it one step further, though, and implicates excessive carbohydrate consumption as the real culprit in heart disease.

Well, enough rambling from me on cholesterol. Read the books (especially the recently released Taubes work) and change your diet where needed. And quit worrying about saturated fat (excessive carbohydrate intake is the real culprit).

Post any diet-related beliefs or practices you think are dangerous to comments.

Comments: 15
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Nov 28th, 2007

Berkeley Fire Department Peer Trainers

BFD post Level 1 Cert at the OFD Training Tower

The Berkeley Fire Department now has 12 newly-minted trainers and will be working in conjunction with CFO to develop a city-wide Health and Wellness Program for members of the seven stations. We are excited to be working with the City of Berkeley, and would like to thank David Sprague, BFD Firefighter and President of the Berkeley Fire Fighters Association for spearheading the collaboration with CFO!


CFT Time Tomorrow! Post your score/goal to comments.

Official Rules of CFT:




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Nov 27th, 2007

Reminder: Kettlebell Seminar on December 8


Just a quick post reminding you that we’ll be holding a kettlebell seminar on Saturday, December 8 from 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Certified Russian Kettlebell instructors Gregg Althen and Kerry Kriener-Althen from Core Fitness Training will be teaching the seminar.

In this seminar you’ll see how to utilize kettlebells for strength, endurance, and/or explosiveness by learning how to perform swings, cleans, front squats, presses, and snatches with proper technique.

The cost of the seminar is $50. To register, contact us at 510-595-9348 or

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Nov 25th, 2007

Saturday, December 1st


11a.m. 11a.m. 11a.m 11a.m. 11a.m. 11a.m. 11a.m. 11a.m. 11a.m. 11a.m.

Free Community Workout for anyone who has been curious to give CF a try. We will work with fundamental CF movements and provide a “taste” of the potent medicine we all love and cherish. ALL levels WELCOME–CrossFit can be done by anyone!

…………………………….and………………….for your holiday enjoyment………………………….

We will be gathering at Luka’s Taproom and Lounge on Saturday night around 6 p.m. for some beer, food and fun! Bring the family, an appetite and a pool stick! Secret Santa will have a few gifts in store.

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Nov 25th, 2007

CFO at CF Certification Seminar


The CF training staff after the first day of the CF certification seminar at the Oakland Fire Tower

Nicole and I are honing our coaching skills–and having a blast–at the CrossFit certification seminar taking place at the Oakland Fire Tower this weekend.

There are lots of familiar faces from CFO itself: Connie, Sam, Lau, Justin, Tom, Charles, Patrick, and Kellie are participating in the seminar as well.

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Nov 24th, 2007

BARE BONES-“N.E.N” No Equipment Necessary


Don’t be alarmed when you walk into CFO this weekend to find most of our equipment gone! No we are not moving AGAIN, nor were we robbed–we have temporarily gutted the gym for a two-day CF Certification at the Oakland Fire Department’s Training Tower. Rest assured, by Monday all of our beloved equipment will be back on the training floor!
These two days are going to be a good opportunity to explore the beauty and simplicity of body weight exercises and the multiple functions of good old DB’s.

In response to many queries regarding little or no-equipment necessary WOD’s for those who find themselves away from the gym here are few “N.E.N workouts:

Walking Lunges
Push Ups

Modified Michael
3 Rounds
Run 800m
50 Supermen
50 Sit Ups

Ivan the Terrible (very little equip necessary)
90 Seconds of Jump Rope
50 Lunges
50 Push-Ups
50 Sit-ups
90 Seconds of Jump Rope
40 Lunges
40 Push-Ups
40 Sit-Ups
90 Seconds of Jump Rope
30 Lunges
30 Push-Ups
30 Sit-Ups
90 Seconds of Jump Rope
20 Lunges
20 Push Ups
20 Sit-Ups
90 Seconds of Jump Rope
10 Lunges
10 Push-Ups
10 Sit-Ups

400 M walking Lunges

Check out Eva T’s blog for some great N.E.N. ideas
Post your favorite NEN WOD to comments.

Comments: 3
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Nov 23rd, 2007

Bad Brad Gets His Pull-Up

Brad’s been waiting for us to produce video evidence of him getting pull-ups for at least a month now.

You see, he’s been telling his family and friends–and most importantly his wife–about all these pull-ups he’s been doing. But according to Brad, until they see it, they ain’t buying it.

So here’s to you, Brad, and the many more pull-ups yet to come for you.

And Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Post props to Brad in comments.

Comments: 7
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Nov 22nd, 2007

Happy Birthday Daniel!

We would like to wish Daniel a very Happy Birthday! There is an open invitation to all of you to join him on Saturday night in downtown Berkeley at Thallasa around 9:30p.m. for something that even he can be humbled at….a gool old fashioned game of pool! Mike is already chalking up in preparation.


Post what you’re thankful for to comments.

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Nov 21st, 2007

A Paleo Breakfast


Some berry-meal, a meat-and-veggie scramble, and a double Americano

I’m not joining the paleo club that has suddenly popped up here at CFO, but I do realize the value of such a way of eating.

And it’s not nearly as hard to make happen as one might think. I put this together in about 10 minutes.

It comes to 4 blocks of carbohydrate and protein, 16 blocks of fat.

What looks to be hot cereal on the top left is a combination of berries, a mixture of almond meal and flax meal, and water. And boy is it delicious!

The scramble is comprised of Trader Joe’s Greens with Envy, ground turkey, and eggs.

And hopefully you already know what an Americano is!

Post your favorite paleolithic food and your favorite neolithic food to comments.

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