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Getting Started

Feel free to drop in during scheduled class times and observe a CFO class in action.

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Upcoming On-Ramps

Get the basics so you can join in the fun of our group classes! Morning and Evening On-Ramp classes are offered at both of our locations and sell out fast.

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Our Philosophy

We believe in putting our focus and resources into our coaching quality and our community.

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Workout Of The Day

The Workout of the Day or WOD is custom-programmed for the CrossFit Oakland community and is taught in our regular group classes under the close supervision of our highly trained coaching staff.

Jul 10th, 2012

Test Your Speed!


Coach Aaron leaning at the finish line

Listen up, CFOers:  There’s going to be a 4 x 100m relay race on Sunday, July 22, open to anyone who trains at a CF gym.

For full details, see the flyer I’ve attached.  Here’s the skinny, though:

  • Each CF Gym can send as many teams as it wants.
  • Teams compete in age groups as follows:  18-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, etc.
  • Medals awarded to top 3 teams in each age group.
  • Registration is $35 per person ($45 if paid after July 15).

So grab three other CFOers and form a team.  This will be a great experience.

If you’re interested in competing in this relay race, come by the Piedmont High Track this Thursday, July 12 at 7pm.  Aaron will be there to coach you and walk you through baton passing (the handing off of the baton from one team member to the next during the race).  This will also be an opportunity for you to be partnered up with others who are looking to be a part of a team.

If you’d like more information or have any questions about the event, contact Aaron via email.

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Jul 9th, 2012

Time Saving Tips


This summer has been busy at CFO with multiple On-Ramp classes finishing up their 4-week introductory classes last week. Thanks to everyone for warmly welcoming all the newest members!

What some of you may not know, is that in addition to learning the foundational movements and skills, incoming members are given some food-related homework. In week one, On-Rampers are given the official CFO Clean Eating Guide and a 30-day food journal. For the duration of the introductory session they’re encouraged to follow the diet as it’s laid out in the guide and log everything they put in their mouths. Everything. Then, about 2 weeks in I give a brief nutrition lecture, answer their questions and take a peak at their food logs. It’s been a fun yet somewhat challenging experience for me because 1) I’m not Mike and 2) I’m telling them what I think they should eat. Over the years, I’ve gotten better at talking about food (and the science-y stuff) in a way that’s not too overwhelming for folks. 

One of the most common things that comes up during these talks is that some find that eating this way is a lot more work. I agree. Life’s much easier when you can just crack open a box of cereal or make a sandwich. Meat and vegetables require a lot more time to prep, especially if you want your food to taste good! This is a complaint that I hear often from people new to paleo-eating.

Here are some of the tips that I share with them: 

  1. Plan ahead. Put some thought into what meals you want to make for the week. Then make a shopping list with all the items you’ll need. Whole9 Life website has a great website with shopping guides that you can download for free.
  2. Cook for 3! Instead of cooking one meal at a time, make enough to last you a few days. You might want to consider dedicating some time early in the week to cooking. While it’s not exactly fun to spend the weekend slaving away in the kitchen, it’ll pay off mid week when you come home hungry and the fridge is fully stocked!
  3. Collect recipes! I have a few great veggie recipes that I’ve collected from friends, cookbook or blogs and I rotate them throughout the week. There’s a plethra of foodie Paleo bloggers who post daily recipes. You can pick from the more simple, quick meals like those featured on Everyday Paleo to the more advanced dishes on elana’s pantry. Book mark them or copy them into word document for later use.

Post your own time saving tips to comments!

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Jul 7th, 2012

Showing Up

Candace Hand Stand Push Up

Candace at last year’s 2011 NorCal Regional Competition

Hunter S. Thompson, an interesting character if ever there were one, has this famous quote attributed to him, "Half of life is just showing up." That quote is so common now to become a cliché, but I have a soft spot in my heart for Thompson, therefore it stays. That it is overused does not make it less true. Progress in the gym is additive. The work that was done yesterday provides the foundation for work done tomorrow.

I mentioned in various postings on this site that strength is built slowly. It also tends to erode more slowly when a layoff occurs than something like cardiovascular fitness. However, when you stop training, you start to get weaker. Getting weaker is the opposite of progress and we want to avoid it whenever possible.  Thus we return to the point. If you want to improve, you must first show up. Again and again. Whether you feel like it, or not.

Here’s a dirty little secret about strength training: almost any reasonably laid out program will make you stronger, especially over the short term. "Reasonably laid out" of course means that you are squatting below parallel on a regular basis and otherwise performing multi-joint barbell exercises. There are no magic programs to increase a trainee’s squat strength that do not involve hard work and persistence. Some programs might be more effective than others and some programs might be dependent upon the level of advancement of the athlete doing them. Whatever the case, the most perfectly conceived program will fall flat when a trainee misses workouts on a regular basis.

When a trainee starts missing several workouts, then they aren’t really training anymore. Training suggests that a goal is in mind. Work is being consistently done for a reason. Working out without a goal is just exercising. That’s not to say that exercising is a bad thing. Moving is better than not moving. However, we can do better. Training leads to progress. Progress results in increased capacity and provides motivation. None of this is possible without first showing up, even when it is easier to stay home. Train hard.

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Jul 6th, 2012

Tough Mudder Training…Not Just for the Tough Mudder Crew


Coach Aaron at the NorCal Regionals

Many of you signed up to be a part of the CFO team that’s competing in the September 29th Tough Mudder.  Weekly practice sessions are taking place each Sunday, and best of all, they’re being coached by Aaron C, our resident masters track athlete and coach.  

The first one was last Sunday.  Obviously, it’s a given that those who signed up for the Tough Mudder are doing these Sunday sessions (registration is closed for the Tough Mudder, unfortunately).  But did you know that even if you’re not doing the Tough Mudder, you’re welcome to come and join in on the fun?  This will be a great opportunity for you to work on building a base for longer duration endurance events, and it serves as a nice complement to the training that takes place in the gym at CFO.  It will also be a chance for you to work on your running technique, which everyone can benefit from.

There’s no cost to participate.  If you’d like to be a part of this, email us at so that we can add you to the email list we’ve created for Tough Mudder training.  Aaron sends out the Sunday workout details and location (it won’t always take place at the track) each Friday night.  In addition, we’ll be posting the workout on Sunday right here on the blog.

So c’mon, get to work on your running and be a part of the Tough Mudder Sunday sessions!

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Jul 5th, 2012

Community Day & Games Weekend Schedule

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6am Class filling the space nicely

REMINDER:  Community Day THIS Saturday, July 7th at 11am!  All are welcome to this introduction to CrossFit.  The hour will be fun & challenging, yet accessible to any fitness level.

GAMES WEEKEND SCHEDULE: The majority of your coaching staff will be in LA next weekend (July13th-15th) for the CrossFit Games.  Thanks to our remaining staff and some special guests, we will be able to offer you some fitness options over the weekend:

Thursday (7/12):  Regular daytime and evening classes. NO OPEN GYM. We will be closed from 1pm – 5pm. 

Friday (7/13): NO DAYTIME GROUP CLASSES.  Coach Aaron will be holding a track workout at Piedmont HS track at 7am, so you can get your WOD on in the morning. NO OPEN GYM. Evening classes will be held at 5pm, 6pm & 7pm as usual, led by special guest, Coach Lance.

Saturday (7/14):  REGULAR SCHEDULE – 8am, 9am & 10am let by Coach Lance.

Sunday (7/15): GYM CLOSED.  Go outside and play day! 

Monday (7/16): Back to REGULAR SCHEDULE!! 

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Jul 3rd, 2012

CFO Closed July 4


Tami’s getting excited about the July 4 holiday

Just a heads-up…CFO will be closed on Wednesday, July 4 in honor of Independence Day.  There will be no group classes that day.

Also, to accommodate the holiday closure, this week’s programming cycle will have Wednesday as our weekday rest day (it’s normally Thursday) and Thursday as a programmed workout day.  So the programming schedule is as follows:

Mon:  WOD
Tue:  WOD
Wed:  Rest Day
Thu:  WOD
Fri:  WOD
Sat:  WOD
Sun:  Rest Day

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Jul 2nd, 2012

Stretching/Mobility Class Recap Part 1

 Trigger point Glute 021.jpg

16 of you showed up to the special mobility class on Saturday!  Most folks were not as comfortable as Michelle looks in the photo above, but I do hope everyone felt better after class.  We really only scratched the surface and I am hoping that we can do a few more of these classes so that we can address each body part more in depth.

Here is a quick review of what we did (I will detail each part in later posts):

  1. Trigger point release on hips (glutes, piriformis, TFL, and psoas)
  2. Several Egoscue exercises for the hips and shoulders
  3. Stretches for glutes and hip flexors
  4. Trigger point release for shoulders and pecs
  5. Simple seated stretches for shoulder

For those of you that participated, please post any questions or feedback to comments!

The ball work requires some better photography than I was prepared to do yesterday, so here are a few of the glute stretches we learned.  Remember tight hips can cause shoulder pain (as weird as that may sound), so it is well worth the time to release your hips.  Doing lacrosse ball or foam roller work before you stretch that area will achieve a much better result.

Seated Glute Stretch 022.jpg

This is a basic hip stretch.  It is important to keep your hips even and then sit up straight, even push your chest out a little.  When you twist your hips (even a little) or round your back, you lose the stretch.

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A deeper version of the same stretch.  Here it is important to keep the leg in front of you bent at a right angle–don’t let that foot creep down toward the hip.

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Julian is (sort of) doing "double pigeon"–the legs should be bent at right angles and lie on top of each other.  Emily is doing the modified version.

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Jul 1st, 2012

Congratulations, Manwell!

 Manwell 1 021.jpg

Manwell Gali and Ed Arias (Lydia’s grandpa and a retired SFFD)

Today, Manwell graduated from the Richmond Fire Academy.  As some of you may know, just getting into a fire department is nearly impossible.  Completing the academy is pretty difficult.  After that, you have to run into burning buildings and do all kinds of things that most of us would never want to do.   The Academy lasts for sixteen weeks–640 hours of training (and you have to keep your shoes polished the whole time).

Congratulations to Manwell for completing his training and embarking on this honorable career!   

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Jun 29th, 2012

Reminder: Dawn’s Stretching & Mobility Class This Saturday June 30 at 11:30am!


 Dawn working on Leka

A big reminder to everyone who’s registered for Dawn’s stretching and mobility class:  It’s happening this Saturday June 30 at 11:30am!  Remember, the cost to participate in the class is $10, with all proceeds going directly to Candace to help her fund her CF Games experience.

Here’s the most recent list of participants.  If you want to attend the class (or if we somehow missed you), just send us an email so that we can get an idea of headcount.

Denise L
Beth Q

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Jun 28th, 2012

FREE Community Day: SAT July 7th @ 11am

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6am Dance Party Friday Community

Community Days are free to the public – No experience necessary. This one-hour class is designed to be fun and scalable to all ages and fitness levels. It includes a warm-up, instruction of basic movements, a great workout utilizing these movements and a cool-down.

Next Community Day will be held Saturday, July 7th from 11am – Noon.  All fitness levels welcome. 

Share CrossFit with friends, family and co-workers!  A great way to introduce your crazy workout program in a fun and non-threatening way.  Typically run in team or partner format, the workout is fun, doable and never boring.  Coaches are available after the workout for Q&A.

And by the way – all of CFO is welcome to join the Dance Party crew at 6am this Friday :)  C’mon, you know you want to…

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