Monday, 31 May 2010

Sunday 31st May 2010...Nearly there now, and what a week it's going to be...

Well, this is how our box is now looking. Just waiting with anticipation of the arrival of the new pull up rig and power cages from BeaverFit.

Are we excited?

Not only that, in 6 days, we have our second:

CrossFit Reading Strength and Power Meet, in Association with FK.UK

40 lucky competitors are going to get to enjoy the delights of events lined up for them to test their mind and bodies. It is going to be truly awesome fun for our girls and guys who are competing...check out for more details.

Saturday 29th May 2010...Wait, and there's more.

...What box is a box without the new whiteboard?

Wait, and there’s more, as we had the fire and other alarms installed, Gareth and friend, of Gareth Edwards Electrical were kind enough to put up our new CrossFit Reading banner. Thanks guys.

Friday 27th May 2010: Rubber, Wood, Rubber, Rubber, Wood...

Well, what a way to spend a Saturday. Moving stuff and laying flooring. The good news was that this was for our box. Even better, we had the help of some of our members. Even with some more hands making for lighter work, it was still an all day job. To add to this some of our members, ie Simon, had done the morning training session as well (nice work fella). But we were all well rewarded for our efforts. As you can see from the pics, we now have a fantastic lifting area with 800lbs s of rubber matting and ply laid.

So a huge THANK YOU to Alex (some fine work with the jig-saw), Emile (who also got his first muscle up), Simon (who also did the morning WOD) and Jimmy (who mopped and put in the last screw) who gave some of their free time to help with the evolution of our box. To top this off, Emile also pulled out his second muscle-up (10 minutes after his first) for the camera on our new rings rigging (the pic is of his second). Must have been the magic of the mats

Thursday 26th May 2010...80% Women...

Apologies for a slow update these past few days, there have been many, many things happening which we are going to update you on.

Firstly, tonight saw a session that was completed by a team of which 80% were female. Was it a workout that the 20% of males were going to find easy? Of course not. Our workouts are scalable which means they can be as challenging as you make them. Fortunately our members like to be challenged.

Starters were:

Standing press 5x5

Followed by:

3 rounds of:

15 thrusters
30 Mountain climbers (each leg)
45 kettlebell swings (Russian)

5 minutes rest, then

Push ups 10,9, 8….1
Sit ups 20,18,16,14,…2

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Wednesday 26th May 2010: It’s just your bodyweight

Started with some hang power cleans for 5s tonight.

This was followed by a sweaty WOD with no weights of:

3 Rounds
Run 400m
Tyre/Box jumps x 40
Push ups x 40
Squat thrusts for x 40

Excellent work from the team tonight - and some more new members too doing a scaled version (lower tyres and 30reps for each movement, and swings for the wounded replacing run).

Tuesday 25th May 2010: Dead Mash

A special from the 2008 games today:

5 Rounds
Deadlifts x 5
Burpees x 10

This was followed by a lovely burpee mash up session. Check out CrossFit Reading Channel for some examples of the type of stuff we do. You can never have enough burpees, even better when they’re mashed…up.

Monday, 24 May 2010

24.5.10 Squatastic!

Another week begins at the new box. Still lots going on behind the scenes and the flooring for the back lifting section has been ordered.

Morning sessions started this week 6.15 - 7.15 a.m.

Todays sesisons included heavy squats followed by a run, a press and a swing.
Squats 4 x 5 @ 80% of your 1 rep max. Then 1 max rep set at 70% of your 1 rep max

Conditioning workout

800m run
10 x push press 50/35kg
15 American swings @ 16kg

3 rounds for time.

Was a sweaty one today!

Saturday, 22 May 2010

Saturday 22nd May: From Bulgaria With Love...

Saturdays are going to have a CrossFit session and Open Gym for members to catch up on workouts they've missed and practice skills that need improvement. This Saturday, we took advantage of the time available to add some new gear to the box. Check the video out to see some of the toys we're going to be using in our training sessions.

Friday 21st May: Smashing good times

Our first CrossBox session at the new box, and what a vibe it was. Members were turning up early enjoying their new 2nd home. Even better, 2 of our members love the new box and location so much they're looking to ditch their other gym membership to go with us. Folks, there are two CrossBox sessions on Friday now, 6pm and 7pm, come and unleash some energy, get in shape and have a smashing time and make new friends!

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Thursday 20th May: Dead swing skip and that ball

Steady turnout through the first week so far and the energy is still awesome…with more gear still to come things can only get better. 5 guys and 4 of our ladies started with deadlifts for 3 reps tonight (5 sets). This was then followed by a dual WOD with 10 minute cut off for each, 5 minute rest in between.

Workout 1
Jump rope skipping (singles) 150,120,90,60,30
KB swings 50,40,30,20,10

5 minute rest
Workout 2
150 wallballs.

Apart from the usual amazing efforts, it took me a while to figure why tonight session was awesome. Maybe it was some of the big deadlifts, perhaps. Actually, I think tonight's vibe came from seeing two of our newer members make some excellent progress with their deadlift form and technique. Great work Debbie and Amy!!
Oh, another highlight was two chaps (friends of our big man, Alex) at the front looking in at everyone training and asking, we're looking for a gym...made me chuckle.

Wednesday 19th May: Hold that line...

Worked on over head squats for 5 reps with loads ranging from PVC pipe to 40kgs. Some good work all round really challenging the core and shoulder stability as well as flexibility in the hips, back, glutes and hamstring. Overhead squats is one of the movements that's always good to identify areas that need work. You don't need to go heavy with these.

Finished with a WOD of:

5 Rounds
400m run
Clean and press 40kg x 10
Lateral burpees


Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Tuesday 18.5.10 Power Cleans & Swing, Jump, Strike & Throw

Tonight we welcomed Rab for his first session down all the way from Scotland. We also welcomed back Matt after he went AWOL for a few months.

Started with power clean singles


Kettlebell swings 20/16kg
Box jumps
Sledhammer strikes
Wall ball 10/7kg

1 minute on each station

4 rounds

Congratulations Mark and Sarah

A massive congratulations to Mark and Sarah on the birth of their baby boy. Well done Sarah and I'm sure you provided great grape cover Mark.

We hear they will be naming the boy Zach and my sources tell me it's after the lead singer of Rage Against The Machine.

Enjoy guys and all the best from everyone at CrossFit Reading.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

First session at the new box!

So after a manic weekend getting equipment in and the place tidy and ready for use we finally had the first sessions at our new home.

Standing at the front of the box looking into it I finally realised that it was happening. The box looked awesome and while there is still more equipment and bits to come it was taking shape. I think for me the real feeling of being in this box was when the guys went of for their warm up run and instead of running lengths in the old hall, they took off outside and down the road.

After the warm up we got straight in to it with Push Press progressive 5's, 4 sets.

Then after some work on tyre flips we got in to a short conditioning wod

In pairs - tyre flips, burpees and thrusters (40/30kg)

3 stations of pairs. only move round once one pair has flipped the tyre 10 x each. 2 rounds

As we thought the atmosphere was awesome last night and it's amazing to think that we have so much more stuff to come.
Look out for up and coming workshops and certifications coming to the CFR box.

Monday, 17 May 2010

What is as rxd (recommended)?

The need to adapt where required!

As trainers of a group dynamic it should always be at the forefront of our minds to get the best out of people and push them to their full capacity. As rxd is always where we try to get our members, but what is rxd?

Let me explain what I mean! At my kettlebell workshops I have a variety of attendees. Some qualified personal trainers, other CrossFit trainers and members of the public. The members of the public could also be split in to two groups, fitness enthusiasts and new starters.

I teach four different types of kettlebell swing in this workshop. A standard Russian swing, an American swing, A UKKA type swing (full squat) and hardstyle! We spend a lot of time on these swings firstly because I think it the foundation for the other movements to come but mainly so that each individual can get an idea of where each type of swing can be used and for what purpose.

As a personal trainer or CrossFit trainer (or any other trainer for that matter) you want to be able to offer as wide a variety of training options to your clients. What you plan for one person doesn’t always work for another.

Up-scaling! Tanya Wagner talked about this in a recent journal video from Filfest. Grace rxd is 30 floor to overhead anyhow with 135lb. I scale this down for some of my members but there are a few who need scaling up when this comes around.

Variation of movements! I have a few members that are training for the strongman contest we are running. I train that at the same time as the other members but with different movements, rep ranges and time restraints. Not just that but when they are working alongside another member I will have them do a different variation relevant to what will be happening at the event. This is just programming I hear you cry! Yes it is but it is also relevant for normal CrossFit members.

Take the burpee. You have the gold standard with a push up, land on flat feet, a jump with full hip extension and a clap above head while in the air. You also have the plyometric variation of this. More of a sprawl, using the floor as your helper getting a little bounce, the flat foot landing, jump and clap. Similar movements but completely different conditioning wise! Do you have MMA fighters training with you, Rugby players? Which variation would you prescribe in a met con? Which one is more relevant?

Take two completely different members. One is an animal, been with you for some time, knows the movements and blasts through wods. The other has recently joined, needs to lose some excess weight, struggles is their conditioning but is moving along at an ok pace. Would you give the second member a normal Russian swing or a full squat kettlebell swing ala UKKA standard? What would benefit them the most in terms of calorie burning?

They would both be doing the workout as rxd weight wise but with slightly different movements.

How many trainers actually change movements to accommodate different members. Of course you would when a member first starts but going forward does each member do the same style of burpee regardless of their background or other sport (if they have one)?

Just some food for thought amongst fellow trainers!

Sunday, 16 May 2010

New PB

Folks, just to give you an example of how 'pumped' Andy was just to be in the box, check out this 230kg deadlift PB just before cleaning the kitchen...(excuse the easy comment at the end).

New toys for boys...and girls

So, the box may be new but some work had to be done. Sometimes you just have to put the euphoria aside, and do some grunt work. This means pulling on some gloves, getting out the bleach, disinfectant and other cleaning agents, some paint and giving certain areas a good scrub and a lick of paint…We've got to make it respectable of our deserving members who've waited so long for this...

But when new toys like above get delivered, it so hard to focus on scrubbing the toilet when there are so many more fun things you could be doing...

The tyres in the pic above were courtesy of Tadley Tyres…. Thanks guys! If you want to buy some for yourself give them a call and be sure to mention CrossFit Reading.

Saturday, 15 May 2010

CrossFit Reading + BeaverFit...beyond building bridges

BeaverFit are making big noises in the community and are also the sole distributor for CrossGym equipment in the U.K. CrossFit Reading will be using the bulk of our new equipment from BeaverFit.

As a start for us here at CrossFit Reading, we have purchased 360kg of CrossGym bumpers (see pic)and a number of bars 3 Beaverfit power racks and a BeaverFit pull up rig stretching 5m x 2m.

Going forward, through CrossFit Reading and our box, BeaverFit will also be running expo’s, equipment showcases and other workshops for which we will be writing up open and honest reviews on our blog. Tom and the guys at BeaverFit are very proud of their brand and being prepared to have honest reviews says a lot for their belief of their products and services.

BeaverFit are also sponsoring the CrossFit Reading Strength & Power Meet in Association with FKUK and supplying the majority of the typical strongman equipment being used on the day.

To top this incredible new beginning off, we are very proud to announce the first workshop of this partnership when we welcome Umberto and his guys arriving from CrossGym to run a Functional Fitness Federation Certification on July 25th. For those that don’t know CrossGym please view here They offer some fantastic equipment and have worked hard to bring equipment that benefits strength and conditioning coaches across the board.

Please look out for more detailed information on this workshop.

Wednesday, 12 May 2010


Phew, what a past few days. WE HAVE A BOX!
It’s been frantic, it’s been manic, but WE HAVE A BOX! Not only that, there’s a whole host of other exciting things that have also been happening, but more on that later.

To things more immediate, WE HAVE A BOX! Why the upper case you ask? Well, because it’s a big deal. For those who don’t know, here’s some words from CrossFit Reading Coach, Andy.

CrossFit Reading has been an affiliate for well over 2 years now. Our home has been Theale Green Gymnasium, an old school gym with ropes, boxes and 1 pull up beam. The old girl has served us well, our members have stuck with us and it is testament to them that we are now in the position we are – moving in to our new home.

For the duration of our affiliation I have been mobile (see pic). All the equipment transported each day, off loaded, used and loaded back up. Initially it was my trusty Audi A3 that took the brunt before I bit the bullet and upgraded to the VW transporter.

I will be sad to say good bye to Theale but not sad to not have to transport all that kit each day. Keeps me fit though right!

So came all the fun and games with sourcing the new box, going out to tender for the equipment and begging, borrowing and stealing to get as much good stuff for the box as possible. Due to circumstances we had to rush through getting the box so it will be a work in motion but we have secured a great facility of 1800 sq ft, a great landlord that has embraced what we are trying to do.

Also central to this has been a start to a what looks to be an awesome partnership with British based BeaverFit with whom we hope to continue building many opportunities…tbc

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Could this be true...

It’s been a while since the last update. Without wanting to jump the gun, we’ve seen a place that has potential and is in a great location for taking the affiliate forward.

Check out the pic. We are excited to say the least about the possibilities, more so then previously as the owner of this place, not through an agent, is actually being very helpful in both helping us with the use of the space and being prepared to listen to what we want to do. As such things have actually moved quite quickly…exciting...the possibilities.