Monthly Archives: September 2008
Sep 30th, 2008

Connie Moreno: CFO’s Nutrition Trainer


Connie has become our official Nutrition Trainer! She will be a regular contributor to our blog and will also be offering private sessions for anyone interested in understanding more about the role of nutrition for body composition changes and/or performance enhancement.

Connie has been gathering knowledge about Zone and Paleo eating for a few years as both a member and a trainer. A few months ago, she started her own nutrition blog detailing her intake and performance and in the process inspired a lot of other members to do the same. She is currently completing a Holistic Nutrition Educator Program and will shortly be a certified Nutritional Educator as well as a certified Dietician.

This Sunday we will feature the first of many nutrition focused entries by Cave Connie and we’d like to know what kinds of topics you’d like to know more about and see covered in detail. Post your ideas to comments.

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Sep 29th, 2008

Bring Your Bike to CFO on Sat Oct 4!


Stacy Marple in action during this past year’s race season

We’ve arranged a special event for anyone who wants to come this Saturday, Oct 4 at 11am.

We’ve arranged to have professional cyclist Stacy Marple (she rode for the Cheerwine Cycling women’s professional team during the 2008 season) come and take everyone on a ride through the Oakland hills (Tunnel Road and the surrounding area). Prior to the ride, Stacy will be answering questions on what to look for in a good road bike, bike gear, and anything else you want to know about bicycles or the sport itself.

After the Q&A session, everyone will head off for a ride. Stacy has mapped out multiple courses according to skill level. So whether you’re a bicycling enthusiast or a raw beginner, there will be a course for you.

And best of all, this event is free of charge. This is an opportunity you won’t want to pass up.

It all begins at CFO at 11am. So bring your bike and come ready to ride!

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Sep 28th, 2008

Congratulations CFO!



You guys rocked it!

We raised a total of $11,483 today for the Prostate Cancer Foundation! Thanks to each and everyone of you who was there to participate, cheer, and just plain support the amazing people of CrossFit Oakland who came out and gave Fight Gone Bad all they had! The money we raised today will go directly to the Prostate Cancer Foundation.

ANONYMOUS DONORS, thank you for helping us make this happen…the gratitude we have is enormous!

What is Prostate Cancer?
Prostate cancer occurs when the cells of the prostate begin to grow uncontrollably. When caught and treated early, prostate cancer has a cure rate of over 90%. Yet being diagnosed with prostate cancer can be a life-altering experience. It requires making some very difficult decisions about treatments that can affect not only the life of the man diagnosed, but also the lives of his family members in significant ways for many years to come. More than 186,000 men in the United States will be diagnosed with prostate cancer this year, and each and every one of them will need to make very personal and individualized decisions about treatment options and diet and lifestyle changes. Most importantly, each and every one of them will have to find a strong, knowledgeable team of physicians, nurses and other healthcare providers to help guide him through the process at each step of the way.

What is Athletes for a Cure?
Athletes for a Cure, a program of the Prostate Cancer Foundation, is a fundraising and awareness program to assist individual athletes in their quest to raise money for better treatments and a cure for prostate cancer. Every dollar raised from the program goes directly to the Prostate Cancer Foundation.

What is the Prostate Cancer Foundation?
The Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) is the world’s largest philanthropic source of support for prostate cancer research. The PCF has a single, yet urgent goal: to find better treatments and a cure for recurrent prostate cancer. The PCF pursues its mission by reaching out to individuals, corporations and others to harness society’s resources – financial and human – to fight this deadly disease.

Founded in 1993, the PCF has raised more than $350 million and provided funding to more than 1,400 researchers at nearly 150 institutions worldwide. The PCF has been a pioneer in the grant making process, simplifying paperwork for grantees, leaving more time for researchers to conduct needed scientific research. The PCF also advocates for greater awareness of prostate cancer and more governmental resources, resulting in a 20-fold increase in government funding for prostate cancer.

Post your FGB experience to comments.

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Sep 27th, 2008

Weekend Reminders!


Rowing is just one of five stations in Fight Gone Bad

***Fight Gone Bad Fundraiser***

Fight Gone Bad is upon us!

And the most important thing to say is congratulations, we did it! We passed the $10k mark today in donations. A big thank you needs to go out to our anonymous donors who made this happen (we have more than one set of anonymous donors). And a big thank you also needs to go out to all of you who stepped up for this worthy cause. Let’s keep the money rolling in.

The first heat goes off tomorrow at 9:30am. Those who registered for a particular time slot will have priority tomorrow. If you did not register for a time slot, you’ll be folded into the mix on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Let’s get it on!

***Olympic Lifting Sundays***

Just a quick reminder that our 2-hour Olympic lifting Sunday session is now under way. The drop-in rate is $20 for a single session, or $15/session if you prepay for an entire month.

In order to participate in the Sunday sessions, you must have either been through one of Angela’s clean or snatch clinics or taken a private lesson with her.

Contact Angela at for more information.

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Sep 26th, 2008

Fight Gone Bad III: Saturday, September 27, 2008


We are in the last few days of the fundraising efforts for Athletes for a Cure 2008! We are encouraging everyone who is participating in FGB to solicit friends and family to sponsor your soulful efforts on Saturday. Get out there and raise as much money as you can in these final days!

Prostate Cancer Facts:

Athletes for a Cure:

Also, be sure to sign up for the heat you intend to participate in.

Heat #1 will be at 9:30
Heat #2 will be at 10:15
Heat #3 will be at 11:00

Post your fundraising goal to comments.

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Sep 25th, 2008

Performance, Standards, and Form



Lau at the correct bottom and top of a squat

Every so often it becomes necessary to step back and take a look around. Having done that in the last couple of weeks, I’ve noticed two extremely gratifying developments at CFO:

1. There are more and more people training at CFO every day.
2. The performance of CFOers is increasing at an impressive rate (across all levels of performance).

These two facts are important and the two of them are interdependent to a large degree (the larger the pool of athletes, the better the chance of seeing above-average performances–this is for several reasons, by the way, but that’s the topic for another post).

But as performance increases (whether in a competitive sense or on an individual basis), the margin for improvement becomes smaller and smaller and improvement harder and harder to attain. This is known as the law of diminishing returns. And as such, if you’re a competitive type, it gets harder and harder to beat Joe CFOer, even though you handily beat him a month ago. And if you’re not the competitive type, you notice that it gets harder and harder to get a PR in the back squat, to shed that last pound, or do whatever it is you’re trying to do in relation to your health and well-being.

So what does this have to do with the pictures of Lau above, or for that matter, standards? Well, quite simply, as it’s gotten harder and harder to shave a second off of Fran or Michael, I’ve seen a diminution of movement standards. Understand first and foremost that this type of occurrence is my fault and not the fault of anyone who’s cutting a squat short, or missing the touch of chest to bar on a pull-up. I haven’t been as diligent of late in enforcing said standards and it’s a disservice to all those who train (and especially those who fail to complete a movement through its full range of motion).

So it’s come time to revisit movement standards, both here on the blog and on the training floor. Over the next few weeks, Nicole and I will be taking pictures of each of our trainers demonstrating our standard bevy of moves, illustrating a full range of motion, as well as a partial range of motion. We’ll be discussing these photos in depth on the blog, and we’ll be posting larger versions of these photos on the walls of CFO, so that everyone who walks in to train with us will have a clear picture of what a proper squat, pull-up, push-up, shoulder press, etc. looks like.

Why does this matter? It matters whether you care about competing or whether you don’t.

If you care about competing, then you want to make sure that you’re on a level playing field and that the competition is fair. If I were to challenge someone to a 400m run and then run 300m while my competitor runs 400m, then our performances aren’t really comparable (to say nothing of the fact that I cheated). In the same vein, if I challenge someone to max number of push presses in one minute, and then proceed to do push jerks while my competitor does push presses, then once again, our performances are not comparable. It’s apples and oranges. I wanna level the playing field.

If you don’t care about competing, but you do care about making improvements in the movements we do, then you’ll want to take note of our movement standards as well. If you have it as a goal to squat 250 lbs, you’ll want to know what the correct bottom of a squat is so that you can get it. If you load 250 lbs on the bar and then go down into a half-squat and come back up, then you really haven’t done a squat.

It’s also easy to confuse standards with form, even though they are completely separate matters. One can have crappy form and still meet the standards for a given movement. Good form (not perfect) will often be the most efficient path toward meeting our standards, however (if you have to yank a deadlift off the floor 21 times using back and arms as your prime movers, you’re gonna be a lot less efficient when it comes to finding the correct top position of a deadlift).

It’s best to think of movement standards as being very similar to the strike zone in baseball. Assuming the batter doesn’t swing and miss, the only way a pitcher can throw a strike is to get the ball within a specified area (over the plate, and somewhere roughly between the batter’s knee and sternum). In the same way, there’s a strike zone for every move we do in CF. For example, in order for a squat to be valid, we have to get down to a position just below parallel (where knee is just above the crease of the hip) and up to a position where leg, hip, and torso all form a straight line.

So over the next few weeks (it won’t be every night on the blog–how boring is it to read about movement standards!), we’ll be detailing a move or series of moves, discussing what constitutes a proper range of motion, talking about some tips on form that will lead you to some efficiencies in movement, and generally beating each of these moves to death.

In addition, look for the “Standards Police” or “Standards Refs” (we haven’t yet decided on the proper attire) to be out in full force during this Saturday’s FGB Fundraiser. Don’t worry, it’s just our attempt to inject a little humor into this otherwise dry topic.

The first move we’ll be detailing (as previewed in the pictures of Lau above) is the squat. So stay tuned.

In the meantime, post to comments your top five list of moves you want to see explained, defined, and described.

***FGB Fundraiser***

Only two more days until our Fight Gone Bad Fundraiser Workout! If you haven’t registered for Team CFO yet, get onto our page and do it now! And if you are registered, get out there and do your best to help us meet our $10,000 goal. Hit up friends, family, whoever and ask them to donate for this worthy cause! We’ve raised just a little over $8,000 thus far, and if we get 50 of you to jump on board, we only need each of you to raise $40 to get that additional $2,000. Totally doable!

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Sep 23rd, 2008

Fight Gone Bad Fundraiser on Saturday the 27th!


The Fight Gone Bad Fundraiser is happening on Saturday, September 27th beginning at 9a.m.. WE WILL NOT HOLD THE REGULAR 9 AND 10 A.M. CLASSES! 4 PM CLASS AS USUAL!

For those of you who are participating in FGB here are the details:

For efficiency sake we will be running three heats:

Heat #1 will begin at 9:30
Heat #2 will begin at 10:15
Heat #3 will begin at 11:00

All participants will be responsible for signing up for one of the three heats (first come, first serve). The sign up sheet will be on the Event Board in the back of the gym by Wednesday. As per usual, we will be doing FGB in teams of two (athlete:coach), so pick your partner and get signed up for Heat one, two or three!

Each FGB participant will be responsible for getting themselves warmed up and ready to go!

***After FGB there will be a post-workout meal from Everett and Jones!***

We send a huge THANK-YOU to our anonymous donors for their generous donation!

Post the FGB score you’re going for to comments.

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Sep 23rd, 2008

Julie Gets Her First Kipping Pull-Up

Give some congrats Julie’s way on her first kipping pull-up. She even followed it up with a second one.

Way to go!

***FGB Fundraiser***

Reminder, our FGB fundraiser workout is this Saturday, Sept 27, with the first heat running at 9:30 am.

Go to our Team CFO page if you want to take part in the workout and contribute to this worthy cause!

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Sep 22nd, 2008

CrossFit Marin’s Gymastics Seminar


A few of us just returned from a fantastic Gymnastic Seminar put on by Andres de la Rosa and Roger Harrell of CrossFit Marin. It was four hours of intense work, followed by a gymnastics inspired WOD. CrossFit Marin will be offering the Gymnastics Seminar on a regular basis and we highly recommend that all CrossFit Oakland members attend.

What is the most cherished skill you have learned from CrossFit? Post to comments.

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Sep 21st, 2008

Another Zone Dinner Get-Together


A few pictures from the Zone Support Dinner earlier this evening

A big thanks to all who came to our little get-together this evening, bringing delicious food for all to share.

And a bigger thanks to TomC for allowing us to crash his place and host us.

Let’s do it again!

***FGB Fundraiser Reminder***

If you haven’t gone to our Team CFO page yet and registered for the FGB Fundraiser going down next Saturday, Sept 27, get your act together and do it now! Tell your friends, tell your family. We’re opening up the gym to anyone who wants to do the workout, and we want at least 50 people to step up and support this worthy cause.

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