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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.

Dec 13th, 2011

Gymnastics Seminar with Carl Paoli January 7th!


We’re just about a month away from our gymnastics skills seminar with Carl Paoli, of San Francisco CrossFit and Naka Athletics.  If you’re after a muscle-up, a handstand push-up, or any higher-level gymnastics/bodyweight movement, this is the seminar for you.  Carl will provide a ton of technical instruction on these movements and map out progressions for any movement you’re after.

I’ve seen Carl coach a few times and highly recommend taking advantage of this opportunity to spend 4 hours training with him.

This seminar is open to the general public, not just CFO.

Register for his seminar here:

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Dec 12th, 2011

CrossFit Total 2011 is a Done Deal


CFTing CFOers

Thanks to all of you who came out and did the CrossFit Total today…what a great time!

And thanks to TomC for the great photo work (including the one above).

Many of you hit PRs in at least one of the lifts (if not all three), which isn’t surprising when you have thirty other people yelling support and cheering you on.  It’s always so inspiring to see all of the hard work you guys put in to your training pay off on CFT day.

Let’s do it again next year!

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Dec 11th, 2011

CrossFit Total Groups



Below are the groups for the CrossFit Total, which begins at 2pm sharp tomorrow, Sunday, December 11.

The doors to CFO will open at 1pm, so you’ll have an hour to warm up and prepare for your lifts.  We’ll brief you on the whole process, the order of the lifts, etc. at 1:45pm.

We’ve grouped you according to your opening squat numbers, with a few adjustments here and there.  The groups may shift around a bit when we transition from squat to press and from press to deadlift, but for the most part, we’ll try and keep these groups intact.

The full group list is attached below in a PDF, and it includes the opening numbers for everyone in all three lifts (please check it to make sure it’s accurate).  In the meantime, here’s a list of each of the groups:

Group 1:  Morgan, Julie, Michele B, Amanda, and Sierra

Group 2:  Sara M, Connie, Ellie, Aisha, and Ev

Group 3:  Eric W, Mune, Sean H, Greg H, Chris M, and Michelle M

Group 4:  Aaron C, Stowe, Jason W, Trevor, John P, Jacques, and Raymond

Group 5:  Jeff S, Lance, Dan H, Jon Y, Josh O, Julian Z, and Armando

We’ll explain how the groups will function in full detail tomorrow, but in brief, just because you’re in the last group, it doesn’t mean you’ll be going last.  The groups are just a method for organizing the way the barbells will be loaded, so that there won’t be too many switches of weights from one lifter to another.  One person will go from Group 1, then one person from Group 2, then one from Group 3, etc. until we rotate through everyone’s squat.

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Dec 10th, 2011

Can You Lift Like a Girl?

Cristi Bartlett pulling an easy 485 off the ground

Pennsylvania is a great state indeed. As evidence for this, I submit Ms. Cristi Bartlett and her 485 pound deadlift. As with Tracy Zimmer, who I highlighted a few weeks back, Bartlett trains and works alongside the widely-respected James Steel at the University of Pennsylvania. She is unreasonably strong and watching her in the video above makes me want to pick up something heavy. I suspect you will have the same reaction. Ms. Bartlett was a collegiate basketball player and stands 6 feet tall. However, here is my favorite part she weighs 190 pounds. Let’s meditate on that for a moment. A 6-foot tall, 190 pound woman pulls 485 for what looks to be a pretty easy single. A 485 pound deadlift is a very respectable pull for a 190 pound man (a little better than 2.5 times bodyweight). For a woman, it lies firmly in the "You Are Kidding Me, Right?" category.

But wait, there is more. I would hate to be accused of missing an opportunity to advocate for muscular bodyweight gain and Cristi Bartlett provides a very nice object lesson. Are you a 6-foot tall male? Do you weigh less than 190? How’s your deadlift? Are you a woman who is resistant to the idea of putting on weight to drive strength gains? Consider Ms. Bartlett’s example. She is 190 pounds of awesome. Maybe it is time to eat a little more. Depending on who you are, maybe it is time to eat a lot more. Don’t forget to lift heavy, too. There are few problems that cannot be made better by getting bigger and stronger.

A Few Announcements

For those of you who participated in the silent auction at last night’s Holiday Party, you can find out if you won by looking at the bottom of yesterday’s post. Thank you to Mike and especially to Robyn who spent the evening making sure that everything went smoothly.

Thanks to the CrossFit Total on Sunday, I have two spots open for this week’s Strength Saturday class. If you are interested, drop me a line  The class goes from 4:00 PM to 6:30 PM. Also, I will be holding a special double shot of Strength Saturday next week, December 17th. The first session will go from 1:00 to 3:30 PM. I have two slots remaining for that first session. The normal 4:00 to 6:30 class is full. Once again, if you are interested, send me an email at the address above. The cost for the class is $25. There will be no Strength Saturday class on Christmas Eve.

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Dec 9th, 2011

Thanks, Everyone!

*** Update:  See below for information on the winning bidder numbers for all of the auction items. ***




Thanks to all of you who came to the holiday party tonight and made it a wonderful time!  We’ll post the winners of the various items from the silent auction tomorrow, so stay tuned to the blog.  Happy Holidays!

Auction Winners

Thanks to all of you who participated in the silent auction last night.  All of the proceeds are going to Brad as he begins the long road toward recovery.

In no particular order, here are the winning bidder numbers for each auction item.  If you won an auction item(s), contact us so that we can get your item(s) to you.

Handmade, Custom Journal

Winning Bidder Number:  233

Title 9 Goodie Bag

Winning Bidder Number:  100

Lululemon Bag

Winning Bidder Number:  120

Pixar Collectibles

Winning Bidder Number:  51

Math Tutoring

Winning Bidder Number:  165

4 Training Sessions w/ Mini

Winning Bidder Number:  200

Cooking Class w/ Connie

Winning Bidder Number:  165

Oakland Raiders vs. Detroit Lions, 2 Tickets

Winning Bidder Number:  108

San Jose Sharks vs. Chicago Blackhawks, 2 Tickets

Winning Bidder Number:  146

Custom Pull-Up Bar

Winning Bidder Number:  233

1-Hour Session with Psychic Jessica Lanyadoo

Winning Bidder Number:  123

Prather Ranch Gift Card

Winning Bidder Number:  114

Custom Art Piece by Annie Vought

Winning Bidder Number:  114

1-Hour Tattoo Session w/ Dustin Wengreen

Winning Bidder Number:  103

Sauce Cups (5)

Winning Bidder Number:  174

Small Bowls (5)

Winning Bidder Number:  174

Large Bowls (2)

Winning Bidder Number:  174

Coffee Filter & 2 Coffee Mugs

Winning Bidder Number:  233

Custom Print, 1 Sheep

Winning Bidder Number:  233

Custom Print, Herd of Sheep

Winning Bidder Number:  233



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Dec 8th, 2011

Holiday Party Tomorrow Night @ 6:30pm!

 *** Gym closes after the Noon class tomorrow!  No Open Gym or evening classes ***


Remember to stop by the CFO Holiday Party tomorrow at the Highland Country Club.  Click here for a map & directions.  Bring your checkbooks for the silent auction and dress in your festive best.

Food and drinks provided, but feel free to bring a yummy Holiday treat to share if you like.  Families and significant others are most welcome.

See you there!

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Dec 7th, 2011

Athlete Spotlight: Flo!



In addition to Flo having an athlete spotlight, yesterday was also her birthday, so happy birthday, Flo!

I remember when Flo first came to CFO for her intro sessions (this was back when we were at Doyle Street).  I’m guessing that Mara, Christopher, and Michael G had to do some arm-twisting to get her to try out CrossFit, and I’m glad she finally decided to give it a try.

During her first intro session, she warned me that there were a lot of things that she couldn’t do–I could tell she was nervous and had some doubts about whether CFO was going to be a good fit for her.  That seems like such a long time ago, though.  The Flo we see these days is one of the hardest working people in the gym.  And like Mara, she has that great body awareness that has allowed her to really dial in her technique on all the major lifts and movements of our program.  Can’t wait to see what the next few years bring for Flo.

Height, weight, age:

5’3” – hovers around 120 – 62

How long have you been a member at CFO?

Two years.

What is your day job?

Assistant director of Park Day School (bridge-k – 8th grade private school in Oakland)

What is your athletic background?

I never considered myself an athlete. Actually, I still don’t. I never played organized sports, ran or swam. I’ve been a dancer since childhood and that was my physical training. Also years of – ugh – step/cardio classes and those tiresome workouts of leg lifts and bicep curls.

What is your favorite strength move?

It’s a tie between back squat & deadlift.

What is your favorite met-con?

Hard question. It’s a love/hate relationship with metcons.

Proudest achievement (CF)?

It’s less about a particular lift than about staying with the program. Cross-fit is one of the most intimidating environments I’ve ever willingly placed myself into. Every day I walk into the gym it’s a personal challenge to confront being outside my comfort zone and to just Do It. And so, two years in, I’m proud to be one of the hard-working, sweating, focused people at CFO.

Most desired goal (CF)?

Personal gains across the board. Of course it would be awesome to do at least one unassisted pull-up in my lifetime. Oh, and then there are consecutive double-unders….

Rant or Rave:

There’s lots to rave about. Mike have cultivated an environment that really works. It’s competitive (which I like), yet we’re reminded that we’re competing with our selves & our own goals. I’ve never been let off the hook because of my age – I’ve been pushed, corrected, and pushed some more. Thank you!! The 5:00 class is an awesome bunch and I love working alongside every one of you. This has been said before, and I hate that it sounds trite, but it’s true – CFO has changed many aspects of my life. I have a confidence in my abilities and my strength in a different way. I walk more toward challenge than away from it and never ever use my age as an excuse to back off. I’m grateful I was encouraged to do this work (thanks Michael G, Christopher & Mara) when it was a “now or never” time in my life. And yay for Ilya, my training partner.

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Dec 6th, 2011

CrossFit Total This Sunday Dec 11 at 2pm



This Sunday, December 11, beginning at 2pm, we’ll be doing the CrossFit Total.  The CrossFit Total (CFT) is the sum of your 1-rep max back squat, shoulder press, and deadlift.  Each year, we’ve gotten more and more people to participate in this Super Sunday event.  And I hope we get an even bigger turnout this year.  It’s the one time that we test you guys on these three lifts, and it only comes up once a year, so take advantage of it.  Plus, you’ll have a lot of fun lifting with all your fellow CFOers.  And finally, it’s a great feeling to see the product of all the hard work you put into your training.  Almost everyone PRs at least one of the lifts, if not all three.

The CFT will be run a bit differently than a normal group class.  We’ll be running it a lot like a powerlifting meet, which means we need a few things from you so that we can put people into heats.

By no later than Saturday at 11:59pm (and preferably much earlier, like right after reading this post), you need to email us your opening squat, press, and deadlift numbers.  We’ll then assign you to a heat, and then we’ll publish the list here on the blog on Saturday night.

Here’s how the CFT will go down.  The doors to the gym will open at 1pm.  You’re expected to come and do what you need to do to warm up.  The first heat will kick off at 2pm sharp.  Everyone will be assigned a heat, and everyone will squat, one person at a time, one attempt at a time.  We’ll have multiple racks going (up to 13, if needed), so you won’t have to wait forever, but you will have to wait your turn and stay in the designated order.

After everyone finishes squats, we’ll then proceed in the same fashion through the press, and finally, we’ll do the same thing for the deadlift.

You only get three attempts for each lift, so be sure to pick a weight you know you can get for certain on your opener, because you can’t move down in weight after you’ve opened (using a 3-rep max is a good idea for your opener if you haven’t done a heavy single in training before).

All the rules for range of motion for each lift are covered in the CrossFit Total PDF here.

Do the CF Total!  You’ll have a blast and you’ll get a great benchmark for you training heading into 2012.

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Dec 5th, 2011

Fall 2011 Paleo Champions!


Today marked the end of CFO’s 6 week Paleo Challenge and while most folks might be racing to the nearest Krispy Kreme, we ended our challenge with a workout! This weekend we revisited the Paleo Challenge workout that we did day #1 of the challenge to determine who would be taking home the cash prize. Here are the details of the workout:

3 rounds for time of:
500m row
12 burpees
21 kettlebell swings 53/35#

At first glance, it seems straightforward enough, but I think Evelyn described it best when she said, "there’s just nowhere to hide."  This workout was unbelievably brutal! I’m happy to report that almost everyone saw an improvement in their time. Some of you even came in on rest days to sharpen your rowing skills and devise a plan to shave a few seconds off your time. All that clean eating & hard work really paid off! 

After tallying up all the scores, our top female and male winners are Ann & Arnold! You two have earned yourselves the title of CFO Hunter Gatherer Mega Superstars and a pretty hefty cash prize!

Top 3 women:
Ann 14:07  12:05
Robyn 12:31  12:05
Beth 15:33  13:45

Top 3 men:
Arnold 11:42  10:34
Lance 12:10  10:39
Brian C 11:42  10:54

Congratulations to everyone who braved the 42 days of the challenge and for your remarkable performance on the workout times two!  

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Dec 4th, 2011

Happy Birthday, Christopher!

 Peak1 (1).jpg

Today is Christopher’s (or CPeak) Birthday!  Thank you to Christopher for bringing all your hard work, humour and wisdom to CFO.   

Please post your birthday wishes to comments.

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