Women’s classes

30 Apr

If you’re new and the thought of walking into a regular Crossfit London class makes you weepy… or you’re fine with classes and have been to few, but still don’t know a push jerk from a Sumo wrestler… or you’ve been to more and still can’t snatch to save a puppy’s life…. and you’re a girl…this class is for you.

Any new (or new-ish) female graduates of the Crossfit London Beginners course now have an extra class option: Their own time and space (away from those pigtail-pulling boys*) in which to hone their skills, uncover 1 rep max’s and generally “man-up” – but in an all-woman environment.

We aim for an especially friendly, supportive vibe that makes for accelerated learning and faster progress. But make no mistake, this class is no soft option; there’ll always be a gut-busting WOD to make you feel so, so special tomorrow.

Classes are smaller, and you’ll be thoroughly drilled in all the moves by an attentive trainer (that’s me, Kate) alongside other developing coaches. That’s a lot of love-bombing for your clean-and-jerk!

Admittedly, Crossfit can be a daunting prospect: So many skills to master, so much practice and polish needed. You’ll get both here. Before you know it, you won’t just be shining, you could be a Crossfit star!

Classes will be every Monday evening
from 7-8pm (in the Back Room)
starting Monday 9 May 2011

Book now!

* Not true! All our Crossfit London boys are big, (strong!) softies!

Fun night: a wod of joy and some rope. 27 April

27 Apr

As the tension grows about the royal weddings, its almost impossible to get Crossfit london boys to talk about anything other than Kates wedding dress ! What will  it be  like. What will her mum wear?

We are all so excited.

So we spruced up the evening with a patriotic crossfit warm up : samson stretch, overhead squat, pull ups, dips, and GHD sit ups, and back extensions.

We focused the session around a “gameish” wod of

5 power snatches, 10 toes to bar and 15 dumbbell thrusters, amrap 15 mintes.

Great fun, then, some of the classes piled into the back room for a taster of rope climbing.


BBQ May 8th [Save this date]

27 Apr

Yup, it’s time to roll out the grill and char some food up!

To celebrate the opening of the new gym, and the final day of the 100 Burpee challenge we’re going to have a party!


Location: at the gym (of course)

Day: Sunday, May 8th

Time: 13:00 until we run out of food and/or charcoal

The drill: ‘Potluck’-style: bring some food (meat and salads!) and drink and we’ll go from there.

Entertainment: 100 Burpees for (the final) time


Do let us know if you can make it!



WOD 25th April Easter Monday….nothing better to do

26 Apr

then be in the gym!?!?!?

After a busy weekend in Cambridge visiting relatives I spent the day on the sofa.

Only come 5pm I had to peel myself off the sofa to get down to the gym for evening classes!

I had a few at 5.30 and then none at 6.30 and a few at 7.30.

Nothing better to do then hit the gym………………….I needed something to peel me off the sofa so I am not complaining really!

Having had a lazy day I asked my 5.30 lot if I could join in. With no beginners in the class I felt able to do a few sets.

I had decided for today to program a whole strength day. I had to stick to the squats as it was part of the main programming but as for the format I played around with that.

We still worked up with 3 warm up sets of 5 but our output was working toward working sets of 90%.

As we were working close to the mark we needed a full 3 minute min rest between sets and defiantly a spotter!

Some top marks for team work. What a great bunch of people I work with!

Although it’s my job to whoop you lot on a big thanks lads for the spot and encouragement when it got to my turn.

Keeping with the strength theme next up was push jerks.

Warm up sets with the bar to make sure technique was cool then 2 sets adding some weight before working on2x4 working sets at  90%.

Since the jerk has come up in WOD’s recently it made sense to practise some heavy jerks. Besides it always clicks more with heavy weight.

I finished strength by doing 2×4 push press. No need to warm up just needed to adjust the weight accordingly.

On such a lazy day it was quite nice to have a session that didn’t require running around like mad-men.

Well Done crew good job from all!



26 Apr

Don’t Forget, next Tuesday we’ll have some very accomplished rowers showing up to perfect our technique and possibly select some athletes to take part in a rowing seminar. Come prepared.

Oh Tuesday, thankfully never as bad as Monday.

We started off our day with overhead squat practice.

The main goal was to correct knee bias. Even if a squat looks technically correct, a slight knee bias can cause the knees to drift forward. This means that even deceptively low weight will keep an athlete from achieving proper depth and not know why.

The most fun way to correct the issue? Practice and wall squats with PVC.

We then moved on to Strict press, working on overhead positions and fixing bar paths before moving on to the WOD.

10 min AMRAP
5 Power Cleans
6 Front Squats
7 Pull ups

2 Min rest.

The structure of this workout was a 10 minute AMRAP, with a 2 minute rest, followed by another round of the 10 minute AMRAP. Doing a 20 minute AMRAP is much more common in Crossfit, however athletes tend to stall as 20 minutes straight is a long time to maintain a high power output. Breaking it up into two separate 10 minute rounds means that every steps up their game. 20 minutes? Plenty of time to rest. 10 minutes? Not so much. Sprints all the way. The 2 minutes of rest gives you plenty of time to recovery and hit the second round with enthusiasm.

Movement choice: The power clean was done to sectional standards, and the front squat was started from the 5th power clean. Dropping the weight mid front squat meant lots more work for everyone. On top of that, pulling with the arms too early in the clean meant that athletes didn’t have any pulling power for the pull ups.

The key is to use the right muscles to do the work, core to extremity violations (pulling too early with the arms.) will leave you battered way before you should be.

Arbitrary Awards:

“Counting Fail.” To Simon. Some people count reps a little too quickly. Simon sometimes adds on extra power cleans to his front squats for fun.

“The Supplier” To Phil, who donated a brand spanking new stereo to the gym. Which is loud. Very. Very Loud. And has killer bass. Me thinks the neighbors might start stopping by more often.

“Most fashionable.” To Steph. For best color coded outfit.

“Best Sweat Angel” To Joe. For the best sweat angel mark left on our floor. Very tapered.

WOD April 24th: Nothing to it.

24 Apr

Happy Easter Sunday!

Granted, most of the class, myself included, had no idea it was Easter Sunday until someone mentioned it.

Doesn’t matter, Crossfit is like the post office: Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor bank holidays, will keep us from hitting PR’s.

We started off with some hip prep, Turkish Get up and double under practice before working on some heavy squats.

The WOD for the day?

1/2 of Angie.
50 Pull ups
50 Push ups
50 Sit ups
50 Squats

The initial reaction of almost everyone was to find the catch. Just a 1/2 Angie? No way.

Rest assured, after heavier squat work, all you need is something nice and easy befitting a Sunday.Of all the movements, the push ups are what stopped most people, but barely. No one needed the 15 minute cap and we had quite a few sub 10’s. Very well done.

Arbitrary Awards:
“Speedy” To Simon, Who finished the WOD in a blazing sub 9. Very impressive.

“Bend like the Reed” To Nick, after weeks of working on it, Nick is finally making progress on his hip flexibility and his squat has greatly improved from it. Good Job Nick.

“First time, but not the last” To Jeff, for hitting his first double unders. Excellent progress.

Good Friday WOD: Fight Gone Bad

23 Apr

Today at Crossfit London UK we  set Fight Gone Bad

The infamous benchmark wod of

wall ball
push press
sumo deadlift high pull
row (today subbed with a kettlebell swing)
box jump.

Some great efforts, including Kate who wandered over to the pull up bar after the wod and did her first pull up, ever. Whoot, whoot!!

Over on the main site at Crossfit.com the wod was

Row 2K

Scott Amory 6:23.9. Post time to comments.

Compare to 080721.


Enlarge image

“I am submitting this photo to honor my Assistant Chief Rick Smith, who will retire on Friday, April 29, 2011 after more than thirty years in law enforcement. Chief Smith has been an avid, passionate CrossFitter for two years and has lost 45lbs and is no longer on medications for high blood pressure and high cholesterol. And at 61 years of age he continues to hit PR’s at CrossFit Mansfield (TX). I hope you post this photo of a good man and a great leader who has done so much to promote fitness and CrossFit for our area LEOs.” – Mike Deavers

The Mental Fight” with MMA fighter Eric Cusson by Again Faster Equipment – video [wmv] [mov]

The Reebok CrossFit Open in Their Own Words: Week 4” by Again Faster Equipment – video [wmv] [mov]

Kelly Starrett and Carl Paoli discuss the 2010 Games push-up – video [wmv] [mov]

WOD Demo with Scott Amory – video [wmv] [mov]

The iPad is taking away American jobs, Jesse Jackson Junior’s sanity (video)” by Vlad Savov, Engadget.


Running Club 19th April – Go Slower?!

23 Apr

The running club has been going strong for a few weeks now, with intrepid crossfit london runners drilling their running technique and working those intervals hard.
For instance last week, we asked the runners to do 200m repeats, with explicit instructions to stick to a steady 75%-80% effort pace. What happened ? Everyone pretty much bolted the 200m as if they were out to win the WOD, with all technique going out of the window. You cant hold a crossfiter back!
So for this week I decided to enforce a pace. After two initial practice laps of 200m in the park , I asked the team to run 200m at a 01:00min pace for the next 6 intervals, with a minutes rest. The goal being to drill the running tecnique as best as possible, and to work at a pace which would lead to a 5K time of 25 minutes. Of course at first we had everyone letting loose and sprinting it, but by the 3rd and 4th runs everyone pretty much settled into the pace.

Well done to everyone who took part, please remember that the POSE running drills take time to stick, and even if you have glimpses of what falling for 5k would feel like (by breaking balance and allowing your feet to catch up) then that’s a success!

My standing desk

22 Apr

I posted about the concept of the dangers of ‘chronic seatedness’ earlier on in the week, and mulled over the possibility of moving my home office arrange over to a standing desk.

Well, it seems that geek heroine of mine, Gina Trapani saw the the same article and posted about her experience of standing desks (in short: she loves them).

So I figured with nothing better to do on a Bank Holiday Friday, I too would put my feet where my chair was and erect a standing desk. As it happens my home office workspace is based around adjustable shelving (everything fits into the alcoves) so it was a relatively simple task to pull off. However, not so simple that it would be easy to reverse should I choose to renege on the challenge.


I spend the vast majority of my day – working or otherwise – sitting; be it in front of a computer, or in meetings. My neck and upper back ache badly the longer I stay seated, which means I fidget more, and get into even worse postural positions. My posture (which is pretty poor to start with) gets worse, and so does the pain. It is not uncommon for me to end up with muscles in my neck and shoulders so tight and knotted that it almost impossible to find a position that relieves the pain. Needless to say, I could do without that.

So why not? This way, I can focus on improving my posture whilst still being to ‘work’ effectively. It also means that my core postural muscles are constantly working which has got to be better than dead horses

And right now. I’d trade sore feet for the burning pain in my neck and shoulder!

I’ll experiment over the weekend, and if all goes well I’ll start working on how to arrange this at work too…

Steven's standing desk
Steven's standing desk

WOD 21st April Making the most of the sun!

22 Apr

What a lovely day!

It’s a shame to be in a gym. My plan was to get you guys out in the sun shine as much as possible.

First we had to get the strength out of the way.

My warm up today was a bit harsh I guess but I think I have been fairly soft on you lot recently so what the hell…………

Bodyweight FRAN

That doesn’t mean you thruster your bodyweight….

The Thrusters are sub-ed with burpees!

As it was a warm up you did 15-12-9 reps starting with burpees.

Steve set the bar at 3 minutes and 41 seconds.

Next up was Pressing and the Strength programming of 2×5 1×5+

You did a warm up wit the bar and then 2 adding some weight.

We saw some good strong forms from most and a few crazy bad habits from some….I wont name and shame you but you know who you are!!!

We need to work on those corrections before we start going mental with the weight.

Next its the Met con. The bit I have been looking forward to. Getting out of the gym and catching some rays!!!

This was taken from Crossfit Auckland.

5 rounds of

50 Swings

400m Run.

The new route for the 400m is at present an approximation. I will get my tape measure out next time. Its may be a tad shorter then 400m but not much!

At the new venue on Malcom Place we have the freedom to swing outside without the danger of white vans running us over!! Whoop.

Well done Asif. After his first round of me shouting at him to use his hips he finally got it as his arms just wouldn’t play ball with him any longer!!! Thats the trick though, it’s not an arm exercise!!

Good job to all and ain’t it fab to be outside!

To see how I got on with his WOD check out……


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