Visiting CrossFitters @ CrossFit London [Gallery]

30 Nov

Hi, are you a Crossfitter visiting London?

Your visit won’t be complete unless you get to Crossfit London in Bethnal Green – the heart of Jack the Ripper country!  We’ll say “Hi!”, sling a WOD your way, and post you up in our unique “rogues gallery”. And offer you an honest cup of workman’s tea.

Apparently there are a few other souls doing Crossfit in London – but why would you miss the opportunity of training with one of the world’s longest-established and best affiliates? Crossfit London was the 20th affiliate to commit to Crossfit. We were kipping, lifting and sweating in the streets of East London long before others thought Crossfit was the new trendy bandwagon to clamber on.

Well, put it this way, if your photo isn’t below, you haven’t “done” Crossfit in London.

Hit the “Getting Started” button, and then come on down, y’all! We’d love to meet you.

sally & Tony visit
Sally and Tony visit
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Collins' visit
Matt was at Crossfit London UK
Matt was at Crossfit London UK
jacob was at Crossfit London UK
Jacob was at Crossfit London UK
kara was at Crossfit London UK
Kara was at Crossfit London UK
William was at Crossfit London UK
William was at Crossfit London UK
Jennifer and Michael from St. Petersberg, Florida
Jennifer and Michael from St. Petersberg, Florida
Samantha orme from Crossfit Virtuosity in New York
Samantha Orme from Crossfit Virtuosity in New York
Justin, Liza, Travis, Elise and Andrew from Crossfit Fort Bragg, North Carolina
Justin, Liza, Travis, Elise and Andrew from Crossfit Fort Bragg, North Carolina
Kara (Practise CrossFit), Ariana and Brian (CrossFit Hoboken)
Kara (Practise CrossFit), Ariana and Brian (CrossFit Hoboken)
Amber and Mark (Crossfit Seattle) passing through the UK on their way to Germany
Amber and Mark (Crossfit Seattle) passing through the UK on their way to Germany
Donna visiting from CrossFit Chicago
Donna visiting from CrossFit Chicago
Kelli visits from Perth, Australia
Kelli visits from Perth, Australia
Crossfit Iceland
Rita from Philadelphia
Tim from Auckland, New Zealand, with Sally and Amelia
Tim from Auckland, New Zealand, with Londoners Sally and Amelia. Tough crowd.
Joel from Crossfit Central Manchester
Micheal from Crossfit Copenhagen
Richard Mudd From Crossfit Swansea
Richard Mud from Crossfit Swansea
Cheryl from CrossFit PEI in Canada
Cheryl from CrossFit PEI in Canada
Colleen from Crossfit Battleborn
Jen and Krista: The pride of Womens Canadian Football
Nicole Lipkin did Crossfit London UK
Jules Slootbeek was at Crossfit London UK
David and Ryan
Ben from Prometheus CrossFit in California
Ben from Prometheus CrossFit in California
Mike visits from Texas
Mike visits from Texas
Christine et al
Martin from Scandanavia
Charles visited from CrossFit Pittsburgh
Charles visited from CrossFit Pittsburgh
Jared (Conneticut), Mike (New Jersey) and friends
Jared (Conneticut), Mike (New Jersey) and friends
Brad from Crossfit Dallas
'Woodsie' from Oz
'Woodsie' from the land down under
Matt and Brian (middle and right) with Daniel
LUKAS KVASNICKA was at Crossfit London UK
Gina Lentz did Crossfit in London (UK)
Evan visited from California (and I forgot to take a proper picture...)
Evan visited from California (and I forgot to take a proper picture...)
Matthew Wlodarczak did crossfit in London: 30 April 2010
Elizabeth and Jeff from Crossfit on the move. 12 May 2010
Tom and John visited from Chicago
Tom and John visited from Chicago
Anna and Andrew from Atlanta (Awesome!)
Anna and Andrew from Atlanta (Awesome!)
Jeff did crossfit in London
Omid visits.
Drew and Connor visited from Colorado
Drew and Connor visited from Colorado
Zach visited from Texas
Zach visited from Texas
Amy did Crossfit London UK June 2010
katie did Crossfit London UK June 2010
Jeff From Dallas
Dennis and Marlene visit Crossfit London on behalf of Alan from Crossfit Spokane Valley
Melanie Rose visits
Frank visited from CrossFit 206 in Seattle
Frank visited from CrossFit 206 in Seattle
Brian visited from Crossfit Scottsdale in Arizona
Brian visited from Crossfit Scottsdale in Arizona
Matthew and Todd from USA
Matthew and Todd from USA
Matty visited from Adelade, Australia
Matty visited from Adelade, Australia
Donna visited from CrossFit South Bay, California
Donna visited from CrossFit South Bay, California
Duncan Hodgson did Crossfit London Uk in August 2010 and we think he is awesome
Teresa Crismon and Phil Trojanowski did Crossfit London uk in August 2010
April (Australia), Marissa and David (California) trained at CrossFit London. Rock on!
April (Australia), Marissa and David (California) trained at CrossFit London. Rock on!
Bryant visited CrossFit London from Germany!
Bryant visited CrossFit London from Germany!
Dan and Danielle visit. Woo Hoo
Thomas from Denmark was here!
Thomas from Denmark was here!
Dan visited from Florida
Dan visited from Florida
Dana from Melbourne
Dana from Melbourne
Jay visited from Stamford, Conneticut
Jay visited from Stamford, Conneticut
Tim visited London from Houston, Texas (for the wedding!)
Tim visited London from Houston, Texas (for the wedding!)
Kent and Todd visited CrossFit London
Kent and Todd visited CrossFit London
David Gareth: Iron Cross Trim Park, Pretoria, South Africa. on 13 may 2011
Alissa visited from CrossFit MPG in Washington, USA
Alissa visited from CrossFit MPG in Washington, USA
Megan and David visited from CrossFit Toowoomba in Queensland, Oz.
Megan and David visited from CrossFit Toowoomba in Queensland, Oz.

Hi, are you a Crossfitter visiting London?

Get your photo here as soon as possible!

Push the “Getting Started” button.

WOD 30th Nov: Tabata Fun

30 Nov

The session that’s too tough for Girls or Men: Only genuine Crossfit London Women can cope

So, we   had, a Fight Gone Bad practise ( one round with a kettlebell swing and a rest as extra stations), introduced some  kettlebell  snatch skills, then  discussed and did Tabata squats: joy!

Are you still reading this?

You should be reaching for the  Getting Started Button.

These women are lovely

womantabata

Paleo eating in London: Part 2

28 Nov

In Part One I covered the basics of sourcing and preparing food for home.

In this post I will cover how to eat in a reasonably healthy way whilst travelling the mean streets of the Nation’s capital.

Ok, so here’s the situation: you’re out and about in London. Perhaps you are doing tourist things, perhaps it’s lunchtime at work. For reasons left unexplained you don’t have a pre-prepared meal or snack with you and you are hungry. How, when faced with row upon row of bloomin’ sandwich shops, sushi bars, and noodle restaurants can you ever hope to eat Paleo?

Well, my friends, there is a way. In fact there are loads of ways.

Takeaway

In true hunter-gather style you’d like to eat on the move. Or at least at your desk.

Option 1: Local supermarket

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UK Supermarkets

This is my go-to meal of choice during the working week. Simply grab a pack of prepared salad leaves, perhaps some additional prepared veggies (sugar snap peas are a fine choice), some cooked and sliced meat, a pack of nuts and a fruit. Bingo! I like to roll the salad leaves and veg up in little meat rolls, but that’s just me. Very simple and pretty cheap.

Bonus tip #1: buy the cooked meats from the deli counter rather than the shelves. They are cheaper and better tasting (probably fresher)

Bonus tip #2: Go for berries rather than bananas, mangos or dried fruit. Their sugar content is significantly lower, and they still taste sweet enough

In increasing order of price (and perceived quality) I would look at UK supermarkets in the following fashion:

The latter four all tend to have inner city ‘metro’ versions that stock a more limited but still useful range of goods.

Bonus tip #3: You’d think it would be possible to find an all-in-one prepared salad (with meat and veg) in the supermarket that meets your needs. However most have either pasta, rice, noodles or couscous making up the bulk. Once you have eaten around this, it is hardly worth the effort. Make your own!

Option 2: The sandwich shops

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Pret a Manger

Yes. You read that correctly. If you look carefully, you can actually pick up a pretty good grain free meal in these places.

For example Pret a Manger do an excellent chicken salad in a box. Yes, it has slivers of parmesan cheese in it, but you can always leave those to the side. The rest is fresh leaves, juicy chicken and a lovely oily dressing. Perfect! By memory, Eat is also a pretty good bet for a nice salad – just watch out for hidden noodles or pasta!

Your other option is to find the kind of sandwich shop that actually makes them to order; the ones that have endless tubs of ingredients and a large (black)board listing all the bready permutations.

Guess what? You don’t have to have the bread! In most of these places if you ask they’ll make you a salad on a plate with the ingredients. And now you have a huge choice!

Option 3: The kebab shop

A London kebab shop
A London kebab shop

I love how I can – with a straight face – suggest that eating food from a kebab shop is good for you. Well maybe not ‘good’, but certainly not bad.

Just in case you don’t know what I am talking about, these are the places that often have some mystery meat cooking on a spit in the window (generally chicken, sometimes lamb). You may also remember them as the place you tended to end up at after a night ‘on the ale’.

It goes like this:

Meat? Check

Vegetables? Check

Oily/fatty dressings? Check

Simply chose from the meat on display (I recommend the lamb for fat content), take your pick of the vegetables present, splash on some sauce, and ask for it to be put into a box without the bread. Or chips. Result!

Option 4: The workers cafe (pronouced: “caff”)

This one is a little bit of a stretch, but is generally pretty good in a pinch especially at breakfast time.

Who does eggs? They does eggs! Omelettes, scrambled, poached and fried. There will be some apologetic nod towards salad, but don’t get your hopes up. Like I said, good in an emergency.

Eating in restaurants

Ok. Let’s manage expectations here.

I haven’t eaten in every restaurant in London. I simply don’t know what is on the menu in each of the several billion eateries that scatter our fair city. What follows therefore are my general rules of thumb for dining out.

Remember the basis

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A gastropub

Your are searching firstly for quality protein (meats and fish, perhaps eggs), then for a little carbs from vegetables, ideally. Finally you a looking for a good source of healthy fats to make up the meal. When you think about it, that isn’t actually as restrictive as you may first reckon.

Most gastropubs (check Wikipedia) for example, do a fine range of meat, fish and vegetables. That they should choose to garnish them with rice, chips or potatoes needn’t be an impediment to you. Simply…

Ask the waiter/waitress

…to remove the offending grains or starches and ideally supplement with additional veg. Yes. It is pretty much than simple. In my experience a pleasant smile, accompanied with a slightly apologetic look (well, we are English after all) gets you most of the way there. If you feel the need for additional leverage, mumble something along the lines of “gluten allergy” and you should be golden.

The posher the restaurant, the more likely you are to be able to ‘customise’ your meal. Perhaps even to the extent of ordering “off piste” i.e. meals that are not listed on the menu. Your mileage may vary.

Use your common sense

CommonSense-1
Common sense?

Not just a rule of thumb for eating, but also useful in everyday life, I find. However, I digress…

If you think you’ll be able to wrangle a nutritious meal in the Land of the Golden Arches or via the Ruling Monarch of Hamburgers, then you are likely to be disappointed. Yes, they technically do ‘salads’. But [insert your own snarky metaphor here]. So there.

Particularly if you are new to Paleo eating, try to avoid getting into a situation where you are searching for food whilst hungry. That is a recipe (pun partly intended) for poor decision making. If possible, try and plan the sort of food you would like to eat and seek out those places early rather than leaving it to chance.

Finally, if you know that your willpower around some foods is…suspect. Then guess what? Don’t put yourself in those situations! Got a thing for cakes? Then steer clear of the coffee houses (Starbucks, Costa, Nero, etc.)

I’ll end with a couple of suggestions of places you might want to consider:

  • All Turkish/Middle Eastern restaurants: usually pretty good range of meat (chicken, lamb, occasional beef) and lots of tasty salads available. Watch out for: bread, rice and occasional couscous
  • Nandos: Chicken is pretty good, although sauces may be a little high in sugar if you are being very picky. Salads available. Plenty of options if you don’t want rice or chips as accompanyment
  • Pizza Express: Do an excellent chicken salad. It comes with dough balls, which you can use as bargaining chips with the chef for “moar cheekin”. A reasonable compromise if you are eating with folks who don’t share your dietary proclivities.
  • Thai restaurants: a little risky, what with all the rice and noodles. However a good vegetable stir fry and some excellent meats will generally fit the bill
  • The ‘Fresh & Wild’ healthfood stores do a great range of Paleo friendly salads (thanks, Trevor)
  • Old Spitalfields Market do a “huge” pick’n’mix chicken salad (thanks, Trevor)
  • Opuz Kitchen, in Old Compton Street, Soho is a very good Turkish Grill (thanks, Morgan)

And some that are probably worth avoiding:

  • Italian restaurants: a sea of pasta and bread
  • Japanese/sushi: rice in spades
  • Chinese: more rice
  • Anything with “Steakhouse” in big red neon letters: (primarily for the benefit of our visitors from overseas). In the words of the great Admiral Akbar, “It’s a trap”. Don’t ask. Just walk by and feel content in the knowledge that CrossFit London saved you.
  • Subway: If I even have to discuss this, then something has gone very wrong*

Doubtless the more gastronomically adventurous of you will  be able to identify other opportunities for Paleo eating in London. If so, pipe up in the comments. I will add your suggestions to this post, credited accordingly.

*Although I did appreciate the schadenfreude of seeing another UK CrossFit affiliate proudly advertising a 10% off deal with the aforementioned establishment “for our members”. Nicely done, friends.

The Zone

28 Nov

At Crossfit London, we sort of endorse two types of eating, Paeleo, and the Zone.  Steven is very much a paeleo boy, I’m  a Zone Guy. I just noticed Steve is always sneaking off  and posting up delicious recipies with photos of massive steaks: the bastard!

Well to day the Zone fights back, with a bit of down to earth, honest to goodness Common Sense (Ooooooh I love that phrase, it’s so intimidating, yet so meaningless)

I always start these thoughts by writing a long rambling critique of what’s wrong. You don’t get to see these thought in posts, because about half way through I come to my senses and realise that what’s so great about Crossfit is that it has all the answers. Therefore I don’t really need to dwell on boring problems, merely offer the solution.

The solution for all your diet based problems is the Zone, especially one that has been athletically tapered and includes a higher level of fat (good fat of course), than the normal Zone suggests.

So, what’s so good about the Zone? Apart from the fact that Top Crossfit performers use it?

It demands  measurement, restriction, combination and thought and planning. Actually that’s whats wrong with most NHS backed diet schemes which emphasise “healthy eating” without demonising bad food!  “All foods are good” it cries.

Bollocks

The hallmarks of a good diet are measurement, restriction, combination, thought and planning. Don’t believe me? Ok, don’t think about diet, think about your working life and your life as a parent

Imagine you are a bank cashier.  “just cashier sensibly” don’t  count your money, just guesstimate, perhaps a palm full of cash  to each customer!

Nonsense isn’t it!

Now as a parent, you are told not to demonise the muck that the food companies want to  shovel into your kids.

Ok, think non- diet. As a parent,  don’t demonise running out into the road,  or eating dog poo or  striking matches in your bed: presumably we shouldn’t demonise unsafe sex  or sharing drug needles either?

Get the idea?

Yes it’s a very bad one.

So if you want to know the secrets behind the successful weight losers, it’s that they measure, they restrict (also a good idea for marriage, restrict who you sleep with!), they combine types of food ( normally a  sensible protein/carb/fat balance)   they also plan  and  spend time thinking about the issues that effect them  and the food they eat.

Above all they get on with it: this is perhaps the biggest secret.

We will discuss the Zone in great detail in the future, but for now I leave you with those thoughts.
Why the Zone?

Greg Glassman, the founder of Crossfit recommends it.

The best feeding  plan is one that balances macronutrients, or,  the big 3 different types of food (protein, carbs and fat)  in a way that promotes all-around health, keeps your hormones at beneficial levels ( for both boys and girls), fuels athletic performance, and supports healthy body fat levels.

The best guidelines Crossfit found for balancing it all out are those described in the Zone “diet.” Think of food in terms of  blocks, or combinations of protein, fat and carb. Feasting on one without the other two screws you up.

read the fantastic Crossfit Journal article that introduces the Zone cfjissue21_e48-1

But, here are a few ideas.
A “block” is a unit of measure used to simplify the process of making balanced meals.


7 grams of protein = 1 block of protein
9 grams of carbohydrate = 1 block of carbohydrate
1.5 grams of fat = 1 block of fat

Each meal or snack should be composed of equal blocks of protein, carbohydrate, and fat. (40 % of its calories come from carbohydrate, 30% from protein, and 30% from fat – always aim for this balance.)

How many blocks you should eat per day?  Well it’s different for men and women (bloody sexism) and  based on your current size (bloody sizeism)

The Official Zone Site can be found here

http://www.zonediet.com/

Here is a useful site to visit, to explain the Zone further

http://www.enterthezonediet.com/learn/zone-diet-block-method.html

In the meantime here is the fantastic nicole talking about diet

FISH OILS

We at Crossfit London are not sure where we stand on supplaments, but  there is growing evidence to support the use of fish oils

http://www.omega-research.com/

WOD Catch-up 26th/27th Nov

27 Nov

Sorry, Im miles behind!

Thursdays Wod was a taste of future thursdays. In the future , Thursday evenings will be devoted to the practise of the Olympic lifts, for both intermediates and beginners.

I will be joined in the 6.30pm class by the phenomenal Foz Rahman and with our eyes, our knowledge, and our video camera, we will get you as good as you can be without being a boring specialist.

But todays Wod was

1,1,1,1,1,1,1 weighted pull ups

followed by Clean practise

followed by this horrible

20 simple Burpees
20 Kettlebell swings.

As many rounds as possible in 5/8 or 10 minutes:

Friday was Fight Gone Bad. well done to Julian for getting a 25% increase in his score and for williams 250, and Trevors 259 score

Julian get a 22% increase in his FGB Score
Julian get a 22% increase in his FGB Score

CrossFit London and FK.UK present: The Deadlift [Workshop]

26 Nov

Deadlifting Workshop

Sunday, 31 January 2010, 1200 – 1500
Chet Morjaria
Chet Morjaria

Sponsored strength athlete, and deadlift record-holder Chet Morjaria teams up with CrossFit London for this speciality workshop on the deadlift.

Learn performance enhancing tips and techniques, along with comparisons and guidance on both ‘conventional’ and ‘sumo’ style deadlifting.

This session is suitable for beginner and intermediate lifters.

Come along prepared to lift heavy stuff off the floor!

Only £30

Click here to book your place.

We are delighted to announce that this event is being sponsored by Chet’s sponsor Boditronics, a leading sports nutrition company increasingly used by the country’s top athletes.

Check out www.boditronics.co.uk for more information.

Boditronics Logo

Free Ring Training Guide [eBook]

26 Nov

[Update: Have fixed the internet. Ring guide is now available for download. Enjoy!]

One of the essential components of any strength and training regime is Ring Training, for many, many reasons.

However, you rarely see these at your local gym.

One of the biggest barriers is that most fitness instructors in “yer local gym” ( “health Spa”)  have never seen a pair of rings, let alone taught anyone how to use them.

Obviously you need to hit the Getting Started button on this site, and start training with CrossFit London (or get yourself a place on the next i-Course), but, in the meantime, this free ring training guide may help you learn some of the basics.

The fantastic Crossfit London UK Free Ring Training Guide
The fantastic Crossfit London UK Free Ring Training Guide. Click here to download

Just click on the picture above to download your guide!

More?

If you are equipping your home gym, then this the section for you!

It’s absolutely essential, in order to train at home, that you get a pair of portable gymnastic rings. The stuff you can do on them is fantastic: dips, pull ups, holds, and the infamous muscle up!

As much as I hate media references, James Bond actor Daniel Craig uses them to get his ‘license to kill’ body (gosh, I can actually taste sick in my mouth for having written that!)

daniel craig ring trains
Daniel Craig ring trains

and the cast of the ‘300’ used them in their controversial training programme.

300_spartan120y
Cast of the 300 used rings

So, buy them direct from the USA. It is cheaper and easier than you think! I think it’s less than $70, and you get access to the Ring Training forum too

Click here to buy them directly from the US manufacturer

[Full disclosure: we make a tiny amount of money if you buy rings from the manufacturer using this link]

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