Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Traditionally on this blog, the Moment of Awesomeness posts include some sort of Extreme Sports video. Today’s post does not.

Even though this post won’t focus on those who voluntarily jump off of a perfectly good mountain, or people who just hate being safe with two feet on the ground, it will still focus on people who I think are brave and worthy of recognition!

This past Saturday I had a pretty busy day:
– Alarm goes off at 7:30am

– Make and eat breakfast, clean my place a little bit, head out the door

– 8:40am- Arrive to gym #1 where some friends were throwing down at a local Indoor Rowing competition

– 10:00am-Leave competition, head to gym #2 for CPR and First Aid Recertification

– 11:00am-1:00pm – Play with a really creepy mask, and feel more confident helping people if the situations ever arise where they need it!

– 1:30pm- Drive to gym #3 to cheer on friends competing in a CrossFit Competition

-3:30pm- Grab lunch w competing friends and celebrate their huge accomplishment

Row, Row, Row Your Boat:

Peter and Scott were good at rowing. Peter and Scott wanted to get even better at rowing. Peter and Scott did just that. After committing to sign up for an Indoor Rowing competition, my friends approached me about getting in better shape for their respective races.

I bet Peter could pull a 1:25 for a 500m row in his sleep. The dude has rowed a 1:21.8 for crying out loud! In my head,that is insanely fast. He didn’t want to race that distance, however. He wanted to step outside of his comfort zone and race the 2,000m distance, a pretty significant jump in distance for a sprinter like myself. Scott comes from a history of cycling. So, while he’s no stranger to racing or “endurance” events, rowing for sport, however, was a new concept for him. When these two approached me about getting them on a 12-week program in preparation for race day, I was stoked! Few things make me happier than watching athletes push themselves just for the sake of pushing themselves!

After nearly 3 months of row-dedicated workouts and time on the erg, we were so happy to see that BOTH of them PR’d in their respective distances! Peter (aka Birddog) rowed a 6:43 for his 2k, and Scott rowed a 1:28.3 in his 500m. Stoked for you guys!

The Rowers together!

Rowers and their cheering section!

Safety First:

I first became a lifeguard at the age of 13. That means my first CPR and First Aid Certification happened OVER 18 YEARS AGO! (Wow, that makes me feel old!) The point is that in my industry (as Head Coach at a CrossFit Gym), safety should always come first. 

While to some people, putting your face on a creepy mask and breathing into a “dummy” may not be the best way to spend an afternoon, I kept reminding myself that if something happened where an athlete collapsed or got hurt… I have been tasked with being able to do my best to help save the athletes in the gym. I remember always thinking as a teenager, “I hope I never have to use this information, but I’m glad I know it!” It’s a big responsibility, so I’m glad to have had that refresher yet again.

Creepy mask, important function

Veteran and the Rookie:

Oh, Danny and Sarah! By far, one of the most fun couples I know. Danny and I met years back competing in CrossFit competitions, and I met his wife Sarah when they came over to train at the gym where I worked. Sarah has always been Danny’s number 1 fan, showing up to events to cheer him on, these last few with their amazing baby boy in tow. When I heard that she had finally agreed to COMPETE in an event, and do it as part of a TEAM with Danny… I was beyond happy!

Not only did they compete together, work together, suffer together, and SURVIVE together… but out of FIFTY SIX (yep, 56) teams in their division, they placed THIRD on one of the events. Now THAT is awesome. Congrats to both of you, it was so fun watching you two throw down together!


After the final workout of the Competition!


The point of this post is to acknowledge and congratulate EVERYONE who has the courage and/or confidence to put themselves out there and compete on a public stage! In my opinion, it’s never about whether or not you win. It’s about did you put in the work to do well, and did you give it your all on Game Day! 

If you have any questions on whether or not you’re ready for a race or competition of your own, or which one you should do, please don’t hesitate to ask me. I’d be happy to talk it over together! 🙂

Thought of the Day: 2/8/16

Posted: February 8, 2016 in Uncategorized

It has been over a year since I’ve wanted to bring my regular blog posts back to the internet. Why hasn’t it been back? Well, there are a couple of reasons. The biggest one of all, is the most frustrating one for me to admit. For some reason, at one point I convinced myself that people didn’t really care about what I had to say.

It’s so weird I thought that because when I utilized this site regularly a few years back, it wasn’t to impress anyone in the first place. I was simply trying to take my years of experience in athletics, the fitness world, coaching, and in life in general… and putting my thoughts out in the universe, hoping it would resonate with anyone. I truly lived with the mindset of: If it helps ONE person, it was worth the 5, 10, 20 minutes, or in some cases, several hours of time it took to share a thought or a video. Having said that, it’s time for me to get Back to Basics! Every post I make will not be the best thing on the internet, and I don’t expect it to be either. What I AM going to start to do again, is try to ADD VALUE, and hopefully foster discussion between people in some way or another!

I often ask questions to the people who read my blog. The reason I ask them is because I want this to be an INTERACTIVE space. What types of posts are helpful? Should there be more information on technique and form of movements? Is mental outlook and “Game Day” preparation advice helpful? What type of content is FUN to watch? What information helps athletes feel like they’re better prepared to achieve their goals? What about nutrition, recipes, and meal-prep? Would it help for me to review specific items that you wonder about (shoes, equipment, bags, etc)? I’ve posted on all of these things in the past, mostly out of my own curiosity, but the goal was always to try and help you guys.

I’m happy to finally start writing and sharing my thoughts again, and I hope that together we can make this blog a resource for people everywhere again!

Happy 2016. Let’s go.


Here’s a photo of me competing in the 2015 Turkey Challenge

Photo courtesy of Brayshaw Creative

The 4th workout of the 2015 CrossFit Games Open is a couplet. Handstand Push-Ups. Cleans.


Now, keep in mind when reading this, that I am pretty much as far from the HSPU expert as you can get. However, one thing I think I can do fairly well is pace workouts. For me, this 8 minute WOD is basically a HSPU endurance race, with some Clean “breaks” built into it.

Handstand Push-Ups:

If you’re close to getting one for the first time, fight today! My advice on kipping them is simple:
With your butt against the wall, pull those knees down to your chest, kick to the ceiling, and throw your head “through the window” to help you ensure that proper lock-out.

I don’t want to get into the politics of sportsmanship and integrity in the Open in a strategy post, but know this… there will be lots of cheating in this workout. You just need to decide whether you want your score to be tainted and rank higher, or if you want to score less reps with proper range of motion. It really is as simple as that, to me. Some of us have been doing CrossFit for 5-6+ years already, and I feel this standard is the most fair one that has ever been set. I am very curious to hear from you guys as to why you might think this standard is LESS fair. Here’s how I see it… 3″ below your wrist, regardless of arm, torso, leg length, and regardless of your weight, is 3″ below your wrist. Am I missing something? Fill me in!


Do them. Haha, not much logic here. If it’s close to, or an actual 1 Rep Max for you, then buckle-up and get it. Plan on a full squat clean, jump and shrug as hard as you can, pull under that bar quickly with fast elbows, and stay tight on the way up! If you’ve got this weight, I’d suggest to move through it as efficiently as possible. For me, it felt like quick singles worked best.


As someone who isn’t great at HSPUs, my goal was to make it through all sets of them without reaching failure. I stuck with short, quick, sets of three for the entire workout. For my friends who are better at them, I suggest starting to break them up at least starting at the set of 12 (if not sooner). My best suggestion is just to fly through reps until you feel your pace slow, then kick down. Whether that’s at rep 7 or 9, or rep 4 of 12, kick down, shake ’em out, and kick right back up.
When I do this workout again, I’ll try to decrease my rest time between HSPU sets. This is going to be one of the workouts with the largest discrepancies happen between athletes. If you’re strong and stick to the standards, you’ll be just fine. What are your strategies? Anything crazy that might help someone else?
Good luck, have fun, I believe in you. We’re almost there, everyone. One more week!

This post is later than I would like. My bad!

However, workout 15.3 of the 2015 CrossFit Games Open is a doozy! 14 minutes of fun, and my advice is very similar to that of last week. PACE!


Here is the logic for my incredibly wise “pace yourself” strategy. A 14 minute workout can be very long. Just because you CAN do 7 muscle-ups in a row, doesn’t mean you should. Just because you CAN do 50 unbroken wall balls, doesn’t mean it’s a good idea. And you have 100 unbroken double-unders? Congrats! If any or all of those things are going to leave your heart rate sky high, realizing you have 10 more minutes of work to try and “hold on” to your pace, you’re going to have a bad time.


If you KNOW for a fact that 7 muscle-ups in row won’t tax you, by all means, go for them unbroken. If, even for a second, you worry that maybe you’ll become too fatigued by going for it, even if you think you can once… don’t! My advice, based on your comfort level, either go 4/3, 3/2/2, or fast singles, knowing that you won’t fail a rep, and that you’ll be able to maintain that pace throughout the workout. Going all out from the start is a bad idea, in my opinion.

Wall Balls:

Very similar advice here. Just because you’re fit enough to do 50 wall balls in a row, doesn’t mean you should. Many fairly competitive athletes will get through 2 or 3 full rounds of this workout. If crushing your first set of wall balls is going to leave you wrecked and gasping for air, the rest of the workout won’t be very fun. My suggestion here, and this may change from round to round based on your fatigue level, is to go 20-20-10, 20-15-15, 20-10-10-10, or 5 quick sets of 10. Whichever option will help keep your rest breaks short, and your legs and shoulders as fresh as possible.


For the jump rope portion of this workout, whether you’re doing 100 double-unders or 200 single-unders, I believe your focus needs to be keeping your heart rate at a manageable level. Going unbroken for that many reps is an awesome skill to have, but if you’ll need to take a 30 second break just to function enough to get back onto the next movement, you’re going to pay for it at the end of the workout. Suggestions here, based on your skill level, will be sets of 50, 25, or 20. As many coaches suggest in workouts, regardless of their time domains, if you’re going to potentially make it back to that particular movement, break the reps and rest far before you think you need to do so. Your fatigue level will thank you later!

I really hope that this post helps you guys destroy 15.3. If you have any comments, suggestions, or feedback, please let me know. Good luck, have fun, I believe in you!!

The Blog is BACK!

Posted: July 31, 2013 in Uncategorized


Let’s do this. I took this quick video last week while traveling, and I am ready to throw down and share some killer content with you all.

I’ve got some content lined up already, but as always, I want to provide info that will help you guys as well! Let me know the type of things you’re looking for, and let’s do some work.

Who’s coming with me?

Thought of the Day: 1/18/12

Posted: January 18, 2012 in Uncategorized

That’s a serious question… and today’s “Thought of the Day”.

Have you?

My challenge to you is to TRY that for today. TRY to go about your normal everyday life for THIS DAY…. thinking you can do anything!

Maybe thinking about flying is unrealistic for you. Fine.
Break it down for you, and start small. But TRY it.

I can close this deal, I can make a delicious breakfast, I can tell my kids I love them 10 times, I can hug my friends, I can smile during this workout…

But have them be things that make you HAPPY. That make you SMILE.

They may not seem like a big deal, but believing that you can fill your day with “accomplishments” is a powerful thought process.

I would love to see at least 5-10 of you guys share how it makes you feel! Do you smile more than usual? Does one success lead to another? Or…. is it a waste of time.

(Side note: I, personally, think you guys can do pretty much anything. In fact, I’ve seen most of you do it already.)


Posted: December 9, 2011 in Uncategorized

Sorry to cancel class this week, guys!

I’m in Salt Lake City competing at a CrossFit event.

Have a GREAT Sunday, everyone!!!

Thought of the Day: 12/7/11

Posted: December 7, 2011 in Uncategorized

Family. That is the inspiration behind this “Thought of the Day” post today.

I had a conversation with a friend today about some of the hardships that people endure in this world. The seemingly unfathomable daily tasks that some take on and which most people couldn’t even begin to imagine. Many times, those come in the name of family. Taking care of a son, daughter, mother, father, grandparent… because “it’s the right thing to do”. Because “they’d do it for me.” Because “they’re family.” In this particular case, it may be all of those reasons, but most importantly… it was because MMA Fighter Rad Martinez made a promise.

Here’s the official summary of Rad Martinez’s story straight from the page of this video that was featured in an “Outside the Lines” presentation:
“MMA fighter Rad Martinez aspires to make it to the UFC — a challenge complicated by his almost round-the-clock dedication to taking care of his brain-damaged father”

I share this story with you guys to simply bring out an important message that I’ve felt very strongly about over the last few years of my life:
At the end of the day, family is all we have.

Friends will come and go. Relationships will end. Jobs, homes, cars will change.
Those people in our lives that we consider family (regardless of blood line) are the ones who will be there no matter what.

The thought of the day, or my challenge to each of you, is to let them know how much they mean to you, and to be aware enough to realize that life is so precious… and it can change so much… so fast.

Let important people, let your FAMILY, know how much they mean to you.

I hope you guys appreciate this story as much as I did.


Posted: December 3, 2011 in Uncategorized

I’m back in Denver! That means that we are ON for Sunday Funday tomorrow. I can’t wait to see everyone! 🙂

So CrossFit Lakewood athlete Janna, asked an AWESOME question on Monday about nutrition.  When someone as awesome as Janna asks a question, you answer 🙂

She wrote:

“I love ideas for “substitute” foods. For example, when you are craving X eat Y instead!”

To get her the best possible answer, I went to my very good friend, incredible Paleo Blogger and CrossFit SUPERSTAR, Juli Bauer!! (Oh, and bookmark her blog PaleOMG and “like” PaleOMG on Facebook right now if you haven’t already. Seriously, go ahead…. I’ll wait…)

Thanks for that and welcome back. Now, check out what Juli has to say to try and help us quench our sweet tooth, without veering too far off of the Paleo and healthy foods path. Thanks for the awesome post, JuliBauer!


Tom recently asked me to guest post on his blog about cravings. Smart man. If anyone knows about food cravings, it’s me. Food is my thing. I’m a bit obsessed with it. I think about it by the hour. I think about what I’m going to eat for lunch, for my snacks, for my weekend treat. It’s on my mind ALL.THE.TIME. So I’ve become pretty good at finding alternatives to “normal” sh*t food.
So, this post will be to the point. I really hate when people use 100+ links in their blog posts, but it will honestly be helpful for this purpose. So bare with me!

When I crave sweets:

1. Cake–I make paleo cake in a mug. It zaps the cravings. And it’s pretty damn filling.

2. Chocolate–I eat dark chocolate almonds and/or walnuts. I may or may not be eating some as I type….effing good. Probably my most favorite thing on earth. I’m not even kidding. I sometimes end up eating these 4+ nights a week. I DO NOT recommend this. I have single syndrome. I end up sitting at home, watching Disney movies, while consuming mass amounts of these. FYI, buy this junk at Whole Foods in the bulk isle. Then you don’t go overboard (it’s called self control people) or pay too much.

3. Sweets–I eat some kind of nut butter and/or coconut butter. Justin’s almond butter packets are perfect because they are already portion controlled for you. Coconut butter is stupid good. I mean, bring-tears-to-your-damn-eyes-good. There is also cacao bliss which is chocolate coconut butter. Effin-A. Coconut butter is definitely more expensive, but really worth it. Since coconut butter is so saturated fatty, it fills you up pretty damn fast and you burn it off right away in your wod. Fantastic. I have found the coconut butter packets at Vitamin Cottage in the Highlands, but I haven’t looked much at other stores.

4. Chips–If you are a person who likes salty more than sweet…well, you are weird. But I support your needs. When I need a salty snack, I’ll go for a couple different things. Either I’ll make something with bacon and sweet potatoes because bacon makes anything tastes like a savory treat. And sweet potatoes give that heavier carb feel/need. Or I’ll grab a bag of Terra Chips and get down and dirty with it. No, it’s not perfect paleo, but snacking items aren’t always completely paleo unless you want to eat carrots. Have fun with that.

Couple other random snacking items I tend to devour:

Be sure to check out some of these awesome blogs that have fantastic snacks to help you out with any craving!
Civilized Caveman Creations
Elana’s Pantry
Eat the Cookie
Dessert Stalker
Balanced Bites

Change your snacks. Change your life. And don’t EVER think that eating healthy means eating boring.