Sunday, July 22, 2012

Attending the CrossFit Kids Course

This past weekend, I had the opportunity to attend a CrossFit Kids course held "home" at CrossFit King of Prussia. CF Kids is exactly what it sounds like: a fitness methodology to use with kids, ages 3 to 18. Since we hold multiple kids classes, plus Steve's Club at KoP, this was a very useful course for me to attend. 

the instructors, demo kids, and attendees
The four highly-qualified instructors included Todd Widman, John and Kelly Brown, and Aimee Lyons who took care of the 40 or so attendees. (Sidebar: I "grew up" watching old school CrossFit videos with Todd in them, so I was super stoked for him to be leading the course. A true OG.) For the weekend, we sat in lecture for about half the time and spent the other half working in small groups coaching each other on the movements and progressions for pre-school through teen age kids. (It's not easy talking in "little kid" voice to adults, but we did it!) The counselor in me liked learning more about the neuroscience and psychological side of CrossFit Kids while the CrossFit coach in me appreciated the time to practice instructing and learning new cues for movement. 

kid-sized pull up conraption
You'll have to attend a cert if you want to get all the dirty details, but I do want to share the main theme of the weekend: Pairing fitness with fun. And not just any fun, but BIG FUN. Kids don't want to "workout"...they want to PLAY! And the more we can blur those lines of "workout" vs. "game" vs. "skill work," the better. I think this can be applied to adults as well! Our adults like CrossFit because to them, it's play time! After "Fran," they may wonder why they even showed up in the first place, but they keep coming back because it's fun. (even if it's in a masochistic, self-loathing, I'm-paying-to-hurt-really-really-bad way) If we can establish a fun, healthy way of working out for kids, there's no way they're going to the land of LA Fitness when they grow up. 

One of KoP's awesome kids demo'ing the movements
Thank you to Todd, John, Kelly, and Aimee for providing great instruction and supervision, and thank you to group 4 for giving great feedback to hone our coaching skills!

(Next weekend, I'll be attending the CrossFit Football course, also at KoP, so I'll let you know how that goes!)

me, Megs, and JZ with the instructors + Chloe

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

What Old Ladies at the Pool and Leonardo DiCaprio Have to Do with CrossFit and Paleo

When I was a teenager, I was a lifeguard at a swim club. I would notice that when the older ladies would slowly go down the steps, waving their hands right at the surface of the water as if to warm it up. They took their time getting in while little kids would jump right in, giving no thought to whether the pool was hot or cold that day. Go ahead and keep that in mind, we'll come back to that scenario later.

photo from: 
Recently, I got this message from someone I knew in college. I was an RA and he was one of my residents who ended up transferring so I literally haven't seen him in years, but of course social media has kept us connected. Here's the message: 
"Yo- thanks for the posts about paleo. I had been reading about it on your FB and was inspired to try it myself. I've lost 35 pounds since march. Keep spreading the good word." 
As someone who doesn't get paid for blogging, I never know who is reading this stuff and more so, who is actually implementing it in their life. My hope in starting this blog was to put information out there for people to pick up if they wanted.  I've learned enough to not throw this stuff down people's throats (although admittedly if someone gets me talking about CrossFit or Paleo and I've had a couple glasses of wine, well, all bets are off). So instead of an evangelical approach, I take a more passive by blogging and then waiting for people to get more information. ("spreading the good word" perhaps?)


I need them to have buy in. Whether it's for CrossFit or Paleo or both, the only thing that will motivate a person is SELF-motivation. Of COURSE I want everyone in the world to be healthy and stop drinking soda and cut the crap out of their diets. But what good would it do if we tyrannically yelled at people for doing such things? It would only make them feel worse instead of educating them on why they might want to do such things. And at the end of the day, you can only hold hands for so long. Self-motivation allows individuals to make decisions for themselves and keeps them accountable for their own reasons, not mine. You know, the whole "teach them to fish, not give them a fish" thing.

Is this Inception? You bet. Inception (2010) was all about planting ideas in people's minds, but making them own those ideas.  

Cobb: What is the most resilient parasite? Bacteria? A virus? An intestinal worm? An idea. Resilient... highly contagious. Once an idea has taken hold of the brain it's almost impossible to eradicate. An idea that is fully formed - fully understood - that sticks; right in there somewhere.

Saito: If you can steal an idea, why can't you plant one there instead? 
Arthur: Okay, this is me, planting an idea in your mind. I say: don't think about elephants. What are you thinking about? 
Saito: Elephants? 
Arthur: Right, but it's not your idea. The dreamer can always remember the genesis of the idea. True inspiration is impossible to fake. 

(quotes from

How I look when people tell me they eat "healthy"
The caveat is that this buy in, this self-motivation, needs to take top priority over anything else. You can't just "kinda" want to get strong. You can't just "sorta" want to get in shape. You have to want it more than chocolate chip cookies, more than "oh I'll just do half reps", more than "just one slice" of pizza. You have to truly look inside yourself and figure out what exactly it is that you want and give it your all to get to that goal. Anything less will mean failure, or at best, mediocre results. And I'm not saying that coaching is unnecessary. A lot of people need guidance and information. But that first step towards health and wellness needs to be a commitment from within. Once that's established, effective coaching can take place. Or, for those more self-reliant and independent, they can take it on their own. 

In the case of my former resident, he decided for himself that he was going to give this thing a shot. I don't know why, but clearly there was enough self-motivation to make big changes in his life and he was able to lose 35lbs. 

If you are reading this blog, chances are you already drank the CrossFit or Paleo Kool-Aid...great! Keep talking it up and giving real life examples since we all know the best form of advertising is word of mouth. But also realize that people will get into this stuff when they feel ready. Just like the old ladies at the pool, some people need to wade into this plethora of information while others can just dive in. It doesn't make either party better or worse, it just means they're doing what's right for them. 

What kind of person are you? Do you wade or dive? 

Monday, July 9, 2012

Garlic Butter

One of the recipes Ditty and I made last week involved making our own garlic butter by heating guessed it: garlic and butter. It's an easy way to change things up and I really like on a microwaved sweet potato, although there are probably a thousand other ways to use it. Be sure to use pastured butter like Kerry Gold (we get it at Trader Joe's)

about 2 tbsp of butter and 1 tsp of garlic (I don't measure, but I bet you were wondering)

microwaved for about 20-30 seconds

added a new kick to the sweet potato

Friday, July 6, 2012

Green Socks

Picture of the day on CrossFit Football's website...The outfit was for our Festivus celebration at KoP back in December, hence the green socks. 

I'm amped for this cert later in July, plus it's being held at KoP! If you're interested in the cert, here's the info. 
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