Monthly Archives: March 2011
Mar 31st, 2011

Congratulations, Manwell!


Richmond’s newest hero!

Our Manwell is many things:  A WOD-crusher, Veteran, barkeep, graphic designer, homeowner, Dymas’ daddy and the main man of the lovely Lydia.   This week he decided to add Firefighter to this list as he accepted an offer from the City of Richmond.

This is quite an accomplishment as the process to become a firefighter is a long and difficult one (not to mention fiercely competitive) – involving a written test, oral interview, physical ability test, an extensive background check and comprehensive medical and psychological examinations.

Manwell, I know you are a humble guy, but we all think the world of you and cannot pass up the chance to tell you how proud we are of you and to lend our encouragement and support as you take on this new adventure, which I believe officially starts in July.

Post said congrats, support and encouragement to comments.

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Mar 30th, 2011

CF Games Open Workout 2


Tony B and Paige Nutt walking through the CF Games Workout 2 standards, courtesy of the CF Games Website

In case you hadn’t already heard, the second workout of the CF Games Sectional has been released:

Max Rounds in 15 Minutes:
9 Deadlifts @ 155#/100#
12 Push-Ups
15 Box Jumps @ 24"/20"

The three movements are familiar CF ones, but you need to be extra careful on the push-ups and box jumps.  The push-up, in particular, must be performed with a strict plank position throughout (no leading with the chest on the ascent) and the hands must be released at the bottom.  For the box jump, the knees and hip must be straight coming off the box.

Check out the full description of the workout, along with a video detailing the movement standards, here:

Just as in the first week (not the second week repeat), everyone who’s registered with us here at CFO will be placed in a Saturday heat unless we hear otherwise from you via email.  We’re more than willing to run you through the workout before Saturday, you just need to let us know so that we can arrange for a judge to be present.

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Mar 29th, 2011

Handstand Push-Up Tutorial


I came across the following handstand push-up tutorial (the first part of it deals with progressions for a handstand, as opposed to a handstand push-up) and thought it would be great to share with all of you since it gives everyone an idea of how to approach developing a handstand push-up, regardless of where you are along the spectrum.  And for the record, I really like the handstand push-up with stomach against the wall, as opposed to back against the wall.  Skip ahead to the 2:18 mark in the video to get to the stuff related to handstand push-ups. 

(And the final two push-ups in the video are well worth the wait!)

Also, a necessary precursor to the handstand push-up is the push-up performed the correct way through a full range of motion (i.e., you can’t skip ahead to handstand push-ups if you can’t do multiple push-ups with elbows tucked in while holding a tight plank position).  Check out SF CrossFit coach Carl Paoli’s video tutorial on proper push-up positioning (with a guest appearance by K-Star):  Getting the Push-Up Right

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Mar 28th, 2011



                                            Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding

Lately, I’ve been having a lot of fun experimenting with different foods and recipes. I can literally spend hours perusing the plethora of gluten-free blogs on the web looking for new ideas and inspiration. For me, there’s nothing worse than eating the same old food day after day after day.  Not only does this make cooking (and eating) incredibly boring, but it could possibly put you at risk for developing a food allergy. Yup, you can actually become allergic to the very foods that you love and eat daily, if you overdo it.

If you received the "Paleo Survival Kit" you can find a list of all my favorite foodie blogs on the last page of the packet.  If you didn’t get the packet, but would like the list, shoot me an email and I’ll make sure to get it to you.

Better yet, just join the Paleo Track google group that Sierra started a few weeks ago. There are already a bunch of cool recipes that have been posted that I’m dying to try.

Here’s a chocolate chia seed pudding that I whipped up for a potluck that I went to over the weekend. It was such a hit that I actually didn’t get to have any!  I got the idea from Sarah Fragoso’s chocolate custard recipe.

(warning: this makes a lot)

  • 2 cups dark chocolate chips (I used 58% cocoa)
  • 2 cans of full-fat coconut milk (not "light")
  • 1/2 cup chia seeds
  • cinnamon, to taste
  • splash of vanilla
  • raspberries (optional)


  1. Shake cans of coconut milk really well. Open them and pour them into a large mixing bowl.
  2. Melt the chocolate in a small saucepan. Slowly pour melted chocolate into bowl while stirring with a fork or whisk.
  3. Stir chocolate, coconut milk, vanilla, and cinnamon with a whisk or fork until smooth (about 2 minutes).
  4. Continue to stir mixture as you slowly add the chia seeds.
  5. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hrs.
  6. Top with fresh raspberries or your favorite fruit.

Happy eating!

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Mar 27th, 2011

The Pelvic Floor

 The Boys.jpg

Probably none of these guys are worried about their pelvic floor.

Tonight I would like to address a topic that may seem a little taboo to many of you.  It is important, especially for our female population, especially those of you that have not yet had children.  

The pelvic floor is a combination of muscles, tendons and ligaments that support the organs of the lower abdomen and stabilize the pelvis.  These muscles, in addition to the abdominal and back muscles, create the strong trunk from which all movement stems.

Weak pelvic floor muscles are usually caused by childbirth, inactivity, and chronic coughing.  Generally, the most common result of having a weak core is incontinence of some degree–hence tonight’s post.  I have had many people (yes, all women) shy away from jumping rope for months until finally admitting why.  

If you need help finding out how to feel your pelvic floor muscles at work, here are some ways to discover them.

If you suffer from light incontinence while exercising, there are exercises (Kegels) you can do to help.  There are even special barbells you can purchase to help you strengthen these muscles.  I will not go into detail about this, but here is a great article from the Mayo Clinic on how to perform a Kegel for women.  If you are male, here is an article on how to do kegels for men, which may have some added benefits for you.  Pilates (dare I mention this) can also help develop the pelvic core muscles.

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Mar 26th, 2011

March Madness Meet Recap

Sectionals Competitors: The Saturday heat schedule has been posted below (see attachment).  If you do not see your name on the list and opted in, email us at The heats are much smaller than last time, due to the fact that this is a repeat workout.  We’ll be running three 5-person heats.

Judges:  Check your email for the judging schedule tomorrow.

Daniel Deadlift at March Madness Meet

Daniel pulling heavy. Thanks to Chris van Luen for taking this photo.

The first thing to remember about powerlifting meets is that they take a long time. If you are looking for a visually captivating, fast-paced sporting event, you may want to consider a basketball game. However, for those willing to spend some quality time in a chair, you catch glimpses of some truly impressive feats of strength. I am always impressed with the competitors that approach the bar without great fanfare, move heavy weights, and then get ready to do it again.

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Category: Fitness
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Mar 25th, 2011

You Must Opt In For This Saturday’s Games Workout


The Saturday heat schedule has been posted below (see attachment).  If you do not see your name on the list and opted in, email us at

The heats are much smaller than last time, due to the fact that this is a repeat workout.  We’ll be running three 5-person heats.

Judges:  Check your email for the judging schedule tomorrow.



Blaire getting after it during the first CF Games Sectional workout

Because this week’s CF Games workout is the same as last week, and because many of you have already done the workout this week (for a second or third time, in many cases), if you’re repeating the workout this Saturday, you’ll need to email us at or post in comments and let us know that you’re planning on doing the workout.

Once we hear from whoever is in for the workout this Saturday, we’ll post the heat schedule to this blog on Friday 3/25 at 8pm.

Just as before (and going forward), the first heat will go at 11:30am.  And also as before, you’re welcome to show up as early as you need to warm up.

After this Saturday, you will not have to do this.  We’ll simply assume that you’re a part of the Saturday heats unless you tell us otherwise.

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Mar 24th, 2011

Please tell me that Strong is truly the New Skinny!


Tracy Anderson can help you look like this – yippee!

Wanna get super-skinny in a matter of weeks?   Tracy Anderson is here to help.  She’s that amazing celebrity trainer who has transformed Gwyneth Paltrow, Madonna, Nicole Ritchie and Penelope Cruz into uber-thin sexpots and states that women should never lift any weight over 3 lbs. 

So sorry, you cannot hire Tracy.  She splits her time between her 2 famous clients: Business partner, Gwynnie and Madonna – well, actually Madonna fired her for ‘spending too much time’ with the head of her Malawi charity (he quit to move in with Ms. Anderson). Oh, the drama!!  Do not fret.  You can join the Tribeca gym co-owned by Tracy and Gwyneth for a mere $4,500 sign-up fee and $900/month.  Don’t wish to travel to New York? You are in luck!!

I’m sure you will all be very excited to know that Tracy has created her very own workout and diet program dubbed The Tracy Anderson Method.  You can all order it for the bargain price of $89.97 for the 90-day program and $29.99 for each additional month in until you feel the need to cancel your ‘membership’.

But before you pull out your credit card, you might want to check out this article about a real woman who tried out the Tracy Anderson Method.  Here are a couple of highlights: 

On the Exercise Plan:  I have to say, Gwyneth made it look rather too easy. On the 30-Day Method you have to do to three hours of exercise a day, which decreases to one hour on the 90-day plan.  It basically involves doing jazzy leaps, star jumps and aerobic moves in my living room. Tracy is totally against other forms of cardio, such as running, where you repeat your movements over and over. That, she says, will bulk muscles.  Along with the aerobics you must do a series of 40 toning Pilates-style moves, which change every ten days. It is gruelling and also mind-numbingly boring. I find myself staring at pictures of Gwyneth in her bikini for ‘thinspiration’.

On the Diet Plan (aka The Baby Food Diet): On the first week of the plan I’m only allowed to eat seven different foods, mostly blended. These include the dreaded Power Juice made from kale, spinach, beetroot and apple. It is so disgusting I drink it over the sink in case my body rejects it (which happened on several occasions).

 Then there is the Sweet Potato Corn Pudding ( one cooked sweet potato, one raw corn on the cob  –  blended together till smooth); the carrot parsnip puree (carrots and parsnips  –  blended); the blueberry and apple sauce (blended until smooth); the gazpacho (also blended until smooth) and protein soup ( surprisingly not blended).

Are you sensing some sarcasm?  Maybe a touch of hostility?  Ok, fine.  I think Tracy Anderson is the devil.  She feeds the ugly media machine that sends women the message that being painfully skinny is not only attainable, but desirable.  She also puts them on health plans that are at best, unhealthy.  At worst, her diet and exercise plan sound like an instruction manual for an eating disorder. But most of all, she leads women astray that might otherwise choose to be strong, fit, empowered, etc.  

I am happy to say that the women (and men) of CFO are beautiful, fit and healthy.  But most importantly, they are smart and educated.  If you ladies (and gents) want to change the way you look or feel, you ask questions, do research, read books and work damn hard to get the results you want.  To that end, if you are looking for some good info and the right message, I would recommend the blogs Strong is the New Skinny and Everyday Paleo if you are looking for inspiration or look no further than the CFO Method for a healthy eating and exercise plan.

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Mar 23rd, 2011

Prather Ranch Beef Order



It’s that time again…beef-ordering time!  We’ve scheduled Prather Ranch to drop off as many boxes as we need on Wednesday, April 13.

If you haven’t purchased from Prather Ranch before (either via our group purchase here at CFO or via the numerous farmers markets around the Bay Area where they sell their meat), here’s what you need to know:

  • Their beef is grass-fed and 100% certified organic.
  • The boxes they bring us are 40 lbs of all cuts of meat (about half of the box is ground beef, and the other half is made up of cuts like filet mignon, rib-eye, NY steak, etc.).
  • It’s yummy!

If you can find other takers, you have the option of splitting a box.  But just for reference, I’m able to fit a 40-lb box in my ordinary freezer at home, so don’t be overwhelmed by the 40-lb figure.  And all of the meat is packaged beforehand so you don’t have to worry about cutting it up to get it to fit in the freezer.

The cost of the box is $240, which comes out to $6/pound, which is a steal.

You can pay for the beef in our online store or by check or cash (if check, make payable to CrossFit Oakland).

Let us know in comments or by emailing us at if you’re in on the order so we can get Scott from Prather Ranch a headcount.  The deadline to get in on  the order is Friday, April 8.

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Mar 22nd, 2011

A Few Photos from the Saturday Session


Here are some photos from this past Saturday during the first workout of the CF Games.  This week, the workout is being extended, which means there’s not a new workout, and that doing the workout this Saturday is optional.  Stay tuned to the blog for Saturday heat information.  The process will be a little different than normal since it’s a repeat workout.

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