Oh yes, it’s that time of year again!

31 Jan

The CrossFit Games OPEN!

That special time of year has come by again, where we push harder in a WOD than we would normally, just  to score better than Joe Bloggs in Minnesota, who we’ve never met!

The CrossFit Games Open is a great opportunity for you to see where you are as an athlete within the CrossFit community, whether that’s on a regional scale or a global scale depending on your level. The good thing about the open is that is has to be open for everyone, the workouts are designed so that everyone can atleast start the workouts to scale!

As in previous years, we will designated specific sessions for these workouts to take place during the week, throughout the open. You will be judged by a fellow classmate aswell as be under the watch full eye of the coaches to ensure the movement standards are upheld and fair competition during the six weeks of the open is guaranteed.

To find out more details and to register, log onto the CrossFit Games website @ http://games.crossfit.com/video/2013-open-registration-live

If you would like to volunteer for the CrossFit London Team, search CrossFit London UK and join the rosta, once you have registered as an athlete. You must do this before WOD 1 is due to end. There are many of you that have been training hard this past year and I can definitely see potential for a CrossFit London UK team to be present at Regionals!

What I’m saying is, if your doing workouts as Rx’d then pay the $20 to register as an athlete, give each workout your all and see how you get on. I have competed in the open for the last 3 years and although I’ve haven’t made through to regionals, I always come away from the Open with some good feedback, knowing what to work on or equally, knowing what I am good at!

So chalk up, bring your game face and where your lucky pants…IT’S TIME TO PUT ALL THIS TRAINING TO THE TEST!





i-Course 27 January 2013

28 Jan

Another action packed  i-course day was only slightly marred by two injuries. We had one  outbreak of ” I want to push the bar in my chin and bite my lip as it makes the push jerk more interesting” and an ankle twist as one of the trainees dropped off the pull-up bar and turned her ankle over as she landed on a trainers foot.

Ankle twists are always painful. Our thoughts are with her!

We had a room full of lovely people who did their utmost to pick up the whole range of skills that we teach in the i-Course; basic squatting, the olympic lifts, kipping, handstands and muscle ups (and other stuff too).

Typically for Crossfit London, we had a mix  of ages and abilities, with an a fascinating range of  reasons to be there. People preparing for “Tough Mudders”, boxing coaches, trainers, therapists and “normal” people looking to get fit.

We fielded a diverse teaching team that consisted of Phil, Carolyn, Kat, Kate and Rachel, so a big thanks to them all. If you came along, well done. If you are booked into the next course, see you then. If you have never attended and want to take your first step towards getting some of those fabulous Crossfit skills, grab a place on the next available i-Course as soon as you can.

Steven’s Sunday summary, 27 Jan

27 Jan

Interesting posts on CrossFitLondonUK.com this week

Andrew announced a swimming support group which he is putting together. As you’d come to expect from everything we do at CrossFit London: it’s going to be heavy on technique… (“Swimming Support“, posted on Tuesday 22 Jan)

We tossed the proverbial cat amongst the pigeons with an article about pull-ups and ladies. It ended up being one of the most heavily read articles that we’ve written this site, and generated great discussion in the comments. Read more about it, here. (“Pull-ups and Girls“, posted on Sunday 20 Jan)

Things worth reading from around the web this week

Juggernaut Training Systems are running “Squat Week”, which is kind of like Shark Week, but with more…squats. Pretty interesting articles from the powerlifting side of our world. “Building an explosive squat” was one of the most interesting articles posted this week.

Elite FTS posted the second article in their series on performance enhancing drugs in sport. Very much worth reading to educate yourself. Make sure and read part one, as well.

A great analysis of the fatty acid (read omega 3 & 6 oil) content of 33 different types of fish, on Suppversity this evening.

As usual, Chris’ blog posts come chock full of great stuff. Check Tuesday’s and Thursday’s posts for more detail.

Other CrossFit London news

We ran another of our hugely popular iCourses today. Twenty people from all over the country descended on Malcolm Place to be put their paces across the range of CrossFit, barbell and gymnastic movements. Know someone who is interested in this CrossFit lark you’be been bending their ear about? The iCourse could be just the ticket…

It’s only a couple more weeks until the first run of the sCourse – the iCourse’s little strength-focused brother.

We’ve just about ironed out the last of the issues with LogsItAll. We’ll have a fresh set of programming loaded on to the system late ron this evening, in a form that should be easier to use. Later on this week I’ll write up a guide to using and getting the most of out the tool.

Oh yes, watch out for the new look CrossFit London website emerging over the next few weeks…

Inspiring CrossFit London client of the week

Rachel: Read her latest blog post on overcoming fears, here.

Also everyone who competed in yesterday’s olympic weightlifting competition (during the Basic Barbell class). PBs were set all over the place, and everyone rose the to occasion! I was truly proud of everyone.

Picture of the week

(Side note: all coaches should really take pictures when they get a chance!)

Daniel back lever
Daniel back lever

(My) Tune of the week

Bound to be controversial (especially with the more dubstep inclined), but my mind was blown by this very slight remix of REM’s “Losing My Religion”. The difference? All the minor notes were changed to major notes.

You’re welcome!

Basic Barbell: 26 January

26 Jan

Olympic lifting

Slightly different approach today as a combination of lazy programming and pure curiously lead me to set the the first every CrossFit London Weightlifting World Championship.

Participants competed to competition rules and were given only three lifts per movement to put up a total. Loads of PBs were set, and, in the case of the ladies competition, it went right down to the wire.

Final scores below:

CrossFit London World Weightlifting Championships results



Press or bench (with pull-ups and ring rows)



Press: Rest/pause strict press at 60% of working weight

Bench: Rest/pause narrow grip bench at 50% of working weight


Squat or deadlift



3×15 Glute bidges

3×20 Woodchoopers with 12kg or 8kg kettlbell


WOD Saturday 26 January: Level 2 & 3 – Tactically, tactical.

26 Jan

Level 2

Weird warm-up relating to hunting with an olympic bar (possibly following disastrous plan crash with Bulgarian weightlifting team)

Skill 1: Power snatches

Working up to 4 heavy sets of 2 power snatches


Skill 2: Tactical pull-ups

Because everything sounds better if it is tactical


WOD: 3 rounds for time

20 Front squats (50kg/25kg)

10 Feet-raised-on-med-ball push-ups


Level 3

Eerily similar to, and as weird as Level 2 warm-up


Skill 1: Power cleans

Working up to 5 sets of 3 power cleans (80% of 1RM)


Skill 2: Tactical pull-ups

3 tactical ladders of 1, 2 & 3 tactical pull-ups, performed tactically


WOD: 3 rounds for time

20 Front squats (55kg/25kg)

10 Handstand push-ups (or 15 feet raised push-ups)

Level 3 26-JAN-2013 (PM) or ‘Suffering in silence’

26 Jan

Due to the fault in our plugs we had to suffer workout in silence. Bit different but everybody did very well.

Deadlift 9 sets of 5 reps, 10th set of 5+ reps (up to 20) 60% 1RM 1mins rest in between sets

Split Jerk 1RM

Special mention goes to Alex who got 10kg PB on his snatch today.


10-8-6-4-2 power snatch (75% of the 1RM  split snatch)

20 jumping lunges in between each (100 total)



Good work Cian on suffering twice: in silence and also with about 90% of his 1RM due to miscalculating his load for the workout.

See you all next week!


WOD 24 Jan 2013 (AM)

24 Jan

Level 3: 7am

Zercher Squat 3-3-3-3-3-3-3 (75%)

Skin the cat 3-3-3-3-3

15 min as many rounds as possible:
12 Deadlift (50/35kg)
9 Hang clean (50/35kg)
6 Strict pull up
3 Toes to bar

Level 2: 8am

Front Squat 5-5-5-5-5

Handstand work:
1. Kick up to handstand and hold 3 x 10s
2. Wall walk 3 x 3
3. Negative handstand push up 3 x 3

15 min as many rounds as possible:
12 Deadlift (35/25kg)
9 Power clean (35/25kg)
6 Strict pull up
3 Knees to elbow

Level 1.4: 9am

Pull up, push up, ring dip

Links & News

The ten things that happen when you start CrossFit.

Elbow mechanics on the push up. Do you need to scale to knee push ups? There’s some pointers here for you.

7 habits of highly effective squatters.


WOD Tuesday (pm) 22/1/13

23 Jan

Hammer time…

Main element last night was our “Hero WOD”, “Hammer”!

It was great to merge the level 2 and level 3 classes at 1730, the level 2 class get a taste of how hard the level 3 guys work!

5 rounds for total time:
5 power cleans (60/40kg)
10 front squats (60/40kg)
5 jerks (60/40kg)
20 pull ups
Rest 90secs

We had some impressive times during the first class from the likes of Jim @21:41 compared to our morning athletes. THEN the rest of he big boys turned up at 1830 and absolutely wiped poor Jim’s score, Paul scoring 18:55 and Alex 19:58, great to see Rich and Chris at 1730 pushing the Rx’d weight! 1930, one big name left to go up on the board! Tommy C, 13:27, he through that bar around like it was a stick, and kept he’a rest until it was time to rest! He then proceeded to be sick and experience severe cramp in both carves and quads afterwards, you know how it is! Top female Rx’d score from last night, 25:57 from Adrienne!

Solid work everyone! Let me know how your obliques feel after our little turkish warm up!

Swimming Support

22 Jan

For those of you who have been asking, I am on the verge of organising a few front crawl technique session to support the recreational swimmers/triathletes among you. This is inspite of the promise I made to myself  to never, ever, ever, go back into a swimming pool.

More news when Ive confirmed with the local pools.

But for now, let me deal with a common breathing problem. For this “hint” im going to assume that you have grasped the mechanics of the side head turn/roll that enables you to take air in through  your mouth, then you either trickle it out through your nose as your head turns underwater , or an explosive mouth clear ( If you use a nose clip)

So its  “in through the mouth, out through the nose (or mouth)”.


Its  all very well, but ( it normal life)  we breath in and out  through our nose, or in through the nose out through the  mouth, or if we are stressed, in and out through our mouths repeatedly and quickly. All of these are dramatically different patterns to the ones you need to use when you breath in front crawl.

So, here is a drill: walk 100/200/400 m breathing in through your mouth and out through your nose ( or mouth) mimicking  what you do in the front crawl. Many people find this initially difficult because its not their natural pattern. So why would jumping in a pool with water slopping everywhere already make a difficult task easier. It doesn’t.

Now then, can you use the same pattern at a jog/ run? Can you  can you breath rhythmically when fatigued.

This is a useful thing to play with as swimming  breathing frequently takes “fit”athletes and turns them into panickers. Pool time is valuable. This little drill can really help.

Hope it helps

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