There are always opinions swirling around about the safety of CrossFit and if it's right for everybody, etc, etc. When the Kevin Ogar
accident occurred, those opposed to CrossFit jumped at the opportunity to bash the fitness program on a macro level.
The thing is though, the accident was just that. A freak accident. Kevin Ogar was performing a heavy snatch, missed the lift backwards, and the weight ricocheted off plates behind him into his back. You can watch the video here
. [Addition: I've read multiple accounts of what exactly happened. The angle of the video makes it hard to see, but the official statement is that the bar landed directly on his back before rolling into the plates. If that's the case, I can admit I was wrong. Either way, it's a freak, tragic accident].
There's always risk in anything you do. My mom once sprained her ankle walking up stairs. My sister (completely sober I'd like to point out), walked right into a street sign and cut her head open (it came out of nowhere!). Actually, now that I'm thinking about it, two weeks ago one of my high school athletes was talking to someone during class and walked right into a pole.
The takeaways from the Kevin Ogar accident are two fold: 1) always ask yourself is the risk of an activity worth the reward, and 2) ask yourself what can be done to mitigate the risk of an activity.[Addition: If the bar did indeed hit Ogar's back first, this paragraph becomes less relevant. However, it still serves as a reminder to take the necessary precautions to make safety a priority].
In the Kevin Ogar situation, making sure the entire lifting area was clear would have most likely kept this tragic accident from occurring. Hindsight is 20/20, right? But that doesn't mean we can't learn from the situation.
I was trying really hard to avoid directly addressing the oft thrown about claim that CrossFit is unsafe. So, I'll just end with the following...
There are obviously some pretty fantastic benefits to CrossFit as a fitness program. 7,000 affiliates world wide can't be completely wrong. So, a couple questions to those who claim it is unsafe: in your opinion, what is unsafe about CrossFit, and what can be down to mitigate the risk of injury while still preserving the benefits?
Those are the questions good coaches, trainers, and instructors ask themselves all the time. If a critic can't answer those questions, there's not point in having the discussion.
And I know it's short notice, but if you are around, we are holding a fundraiser for Kevin Ogar at CrossFit DoneRight this Sunday, January 26th at 9am. We are doing a partner CrossFit workout. The cost for participation is $25, and all money raised will go towards Kevin Ogar's recovery fund. For more information, email me. email@example.com
Last night, for the first time since I read the Harry Potter books (kidding, maybe...) I finished a book cover to cover without starting another book in the middle. When I woke up this morning and realized what I'd done, I was pretty excited.
My tendency in the past has always been to start a book, get about halfway through, then see another hot, sexy book and start reading that one too. I might get a quarter way through that one and see another book that piques my interest. That one might look like it's an easy read, so I'll crack it open and maybe read a chapter or two. Before I know it I'm trying to juggle three or more different books at the same time. Definitely not an ideal situation.
Now, I'm a very efficient minded-individual. (Less enlightened individuals might call it lazy, but who asked them anyways?) My time is very precious to me and I try to make sure I'm working on my highest priority tasks whenever I can. In the past, I've been able to justify my "book-hopping" by telling myself I wasn't getting what I needed from that book, that it wasn't an efficient use of my time at the moment, so starting another book wasn't a big deal. I could test the water and see if that other book would resonate with me more.
The problem with this approach is that I never committed fully to the book. You get out what you put in, and half-heartedly reading a book means I was only getting half of the potential out of the book. Or something like that.
Thinking about it, it's kind of a cop-out. If I don't read the book to the end, without distraction from other books, can I really judge the merit of the book? I can go about saying the book wasn't worth it because it wasn't good enough to get me to read it through without distraction, but it's really on me.
This is the same with a fitness program, a diet, a relationship, or any other goal you set for yourself. Not seeing any of these through to the end makes it easy to blame external factors when you don't succeed. "The diet didn't work", "that fitness program poorly constructed", "that woman I dated was kinda crazy". These things are way to easy to say when things get slightly difficult and you don't have the mentality necessary to push through.
The caveat for all of this though is that sometimes that diet really doesn't work, and that fitness program really is poorly constructed, and that woman is certifiably insane. Just make sure you are aware to recognize the difference between self-sabotaging actions and actual, legit reasons to quit something.
Mid-line Strength & Stability Clinic
To kick off the new year, I want to hold a clinic that will lay the groundwork for anyone serious about exponentially improving their fitness in 2014.
When you work with athletes, CrossFitters, or basically anyone who is serious about their fitness, you start to see basic patterns emerge that separate the more fit from the less fit and the chronically injured from the injury free.
Lately, I feel like I've held the same conversation with dozens of my clients and athletes.
They come to me with an injury or I point out a fault in their technique and we talk about the importance of mid-line positioning, core strength, upper back strength, etc. But after the initial conversation, I'm left
unsatisfied because I know it takes more than 5 minutes of cueing to "get it" and I'm sure they are left unsatisfied without a sufficient plan to attack and address the issue.
I decided I wanted to create a clinic that would highlight these differences, giving anyone participating the tools necessary to recognize these patterns in themselves (and others) and a plan to correct and/or improve them.
The Mid-Line & Stability Clinic is an hour long, held at CrossFit DoneRight
, on Saturday, January 18th at 11:30am.
The clinic is going to be a fast paced, jam-packed hour with tons of information thrown your way plus lots of hands on, practical application exercises (aka, you'll get a mental and physical workout). Anyone participating in the clinic will also get a free PDF which will include everything we go over during the clinic plus everything I wanted to cover during the hour but didn't have the time to get to.
I hope you find it worthwhile.Register for the clinic here.If you won't be able to make it to the clinic, you can purchase the PDF for $10 by following the link below.Purchase Mid-line clinic PDF
I just came across this material and decided it was necessary to share.
First, a story.
One of my clients has been with me for about 4 years now. She's fun to work with, but you can never tell if she's listening, she's a bit stubborn, and loves to ask why. When I'm working with her I always have to be on my toes because I know she'll ask why we're doing something and she'll sure as hell let me know if she doesn't like my response.
Anyways, like I said, this client has been with me for about 4 years now. A few weeks ago, out of the blue, she came up to me after a class and said "that thing, with the deadlift, you told me three years ago. I get it now. It makes sense. You were right".
This made my day.
I'm in the business of teaching. I teach others how to be more fit, or how to lose weight, or how to get super brolic if they'd like. And I love to teach. I love to pass knowledge on to others and self-satisfaction that comes along with helping someone learn is tough to match anywhere else.
But I'm always looking for ways to get better. To improve my teaching process. Three years to pick up on something is WAY to long.
Here is the material I wanted to share, and something you may have heard before:
10% of what we read.
20% of what we see or hear.
30% of what we demonstrate.
50% of what we discuss in a group setting.
75% of what we practice in real time.
90% of what we teach to others.
This information all of a sudden makes me reconsider my whole teaching process. If I can find a way for my clients and athletes to teach what we go over and discuss versus just see/hear/practice, I can really help them understand what we are doing faster and more effectively. All of a sudden, the value of what we are doing skyrockets!
And this information has value outside of that setting. If you are a parent looking to teach your kids how to do something, for example washing the dishes, show them, and then have them teach you.
So, take this information and turn around and teach it to someone else!
Anyways, that's all I wanted to share for now. Basically, I'm using the blog as one medium to help myself learn and retain the material.
This material will sit and percolate in my head for awhile until I can figure out exactly how I want to use it.
Oh, and last thing. I've tried to structure this blog in a manner that is supposed to amplify learning and retention for the reader. So I'm sitting in the practice stage for that. I'll turn around and teach the structure in another blog.
A good friend sent this video my way (thanks Mel!) and I had to share.
There's no ground breaking material in here. Nothing most in their 20's haven't heard before. But I've come across too many people floating through (including myself), procrastinating making any moves for whatever reason. Or waiting until their backs are up against the wall before they feel compelled to do anything. I'm only 25, but I look back and think "I could have done more. I could be doing more that matters". Paraphrasing from the talk: exploration that doesn't count isn't exploration. It's procrastination.
Don't settle for "I'll do it later". Start creating the life you want now.
Enjoy. Let me know what you think.
We all want the quick fix. The magic answer to whatever problem we have. Unfortunately, there is no super secret 3 minute ab program. There is no pill that will make you skinny while eating whatever you want (without TERRIBLE side effects). There is no "Get Rich Easy" scheme that will change your life forever. Success in anything never happens by accident. It is the product of consistent and diligent hard work.
Having a plan and sticking to it is more important than having the "perfect" plan and doing nothing with it. After having some fantastic discussions with incredibly successful people, I've realized they weren't given the winning playbook. They just kept trying shit until something finally stuck. The not-so-perfect plan can always be refined and improved along the way.
More and more I'm realizing that structuring my life to make sure I stay accountable to my top priorities, the more I accomplish.
Below are the "hacks" I've found to be very powerful for helping me reach my goals. They are a mix of behaviors that encourage accountability and little actions that yield BIG results. None of them are "game changers" in themselves, but practiced over and over I've found they facilitate larger positive behaviors.
Try them. Make the commitment to stick to them. Let me know how it goes.General Life Hacks:
1) Commit to making decisions. Don't sit on the fence about something. There's NOTHING worse than standing still. Keep moving forward.
2) Write down your goals. Seriously. And review them every night. Mark what you did to work towards them. Mark if you did nothing. This will focus your daily actions.
3) Use Pareto's Principle
(20% of actions yield 80% of results)
4) Use Parkinson's Law
(work expands to the time available for its completion).
5) Tell people your goals.
This is huge. A goal really doesn't become a reality until it gets out into the world. If no one knows what you are trying to accomplish, you have no incentive to stick to it. And if you don't have the stomach to take the "feedback" people will give you, chances are you won't reach the goal anyways.
6) Find a go-to motivation. Something that will kick your ass into gear when you just don't feel like doing anything. It could be a video, a quote, or a song. I converted this video here
to an MP3 and set it as my alarm in the morning. Anytime I feel like just laying around doing nothing I throw that bad boy on. So I listen to it a lot.Nutrition/Diet Hacks:
1) Eat 30 grams of protein within 30 minutes of waking up.
2) No carbs after 8pm.
3) Keep a food journal.General Fitness Hacks:
1) Schedule your sessions a week in advance. Put it in your calendar.
2) Tell people when you are going to work out. Find a workout buddy.
3) Stick to a program. Give it a solid 3 months before you change programs.Strength Hacks:
1) Lift HEAVY. Max out (with good technique) minimum 3x week.
I'm always on the look out for other accountability/general life hacks. What do you use on a daily basis?
Below is a slideshow I put together, making a basic case for why high school athletes need to train using CrossFit (tailored to their sport).
There's a lot of confusion out there about what CrossFit is, why it works, if it's safe, etc, especially when it comes to young athletes. Simply put, CrossFit works if you are looking to become a better athlete and is completely safe if you know what you are doing. It's like any other activity. You can have shitty yoga instructors and you can have fantastic yoga instructors. You can have shitty basketball coaches and you can have fantastic basketball coaches. And you can have shitty CrossFit coaches and you can have knowledgeable, patient, amazing CrossFit coaches.
Anyways, take a flip through the slideshow. I recommend clicking on and watching the videos on page 13 (especially the one of the brolic dude with the chain around his neck).
And, finally. Please share this post and slideshow! I'd really appreciate and it would make you super awesome.
Another family vacation come and gone. On a scale of 1 to the most exciting thing I've ever done in my entire life? I would say the vacation falls at a 7.5. Which is good, because I won't do lower than a 7.
I'd like to take this time to look back and reflect on this trip in list format because, hey, who doesn't like lists?
- Family vacations are more enjoyable when everyone is over 21. We're basically all on the same playing field now. Everyone want to go to happy hour after taking a Pink Jeep Tour around Sedona? Done and done. No more leaving someone behind.
- I cannot let my little brother borrow anything I actually like/need. We've been on two trips to Vegas together in the last 5 months and I'm down a credit card and a pair of sunglasses.
- The key to a successful family vacation is to not force anyone into doing anything they don't want to do. The options were laid out, we had the freedom to choose, and it worked out wonderfully.
- I developed an intense 5 day relationship with Instagram (post Vegas, of course). Hopefully we can remain friends now that the flame has died down.
- Bringing friends/family friends on vacation helps break up the family time into manageable chunks. Especially if the they are awesome and get along with everyone there (they were).
- Get your suit tailored! See picture below.
- Calling "shotgun, no blitz" is essential to car ride comfortability. Also, volunteering to sit in the middle back seat of a van is the way to go if you are forced to sit in the back.
- I'm obsessed with the new Drake album.
- Nevada/Arizona are beautiful. Not sure if could ever live there, but I always appreciate visiting.
- And, for fun, here's a recap of my favorite little brother moments of the trip: Erik loses my sunglasses, Erik breaks hotel chair, Erik volunteers to buy shots for the group and I end up picking up the tab, Erik transfers money over from his savings account to his checking account while we are at the club, Erik FaceTimes his girlfriend and passes the phone around to everyone at the dinner table, Erik SnapChats my sisters fiance' the entire trip even though he is on the trip with us, Erik hits cue ball off the pool table and it proceeds to hit a window, then roll down a flight of stairs.
Can't wait for the next trip!
I've recently started picking up my 5 year old goddaughter, Taylor, from the bus stop every Tuesday to bring her to the CrossFit Kids class we offer at CFDR. This has quickly become the favorite part of my week and I can't even begin to describe how excited I am from the moment I leave to pick her up until her mom picks her up two hours later. She's hands down my favorite person under four and a half feet tall and I'm definitely hesitant to say there's anyone over four and a half feet tall that could steal that title from her.
Basically, my entire week is spent taking care of myself and making decisions for myself. However, during this two hour period on Tuesdays, I don't think about myself at all. It's all about Taylor. Making sure she can open her juice box. Making sure she doesn't try to open the car door while it's moving. Making sure I don't curse in front of her. Making sure I'm teaching her to take care of herself. And making sure I'm treating her like she should be treated to grow up happy in this world.
This is my slow departure from selfishness. Granted, it certainly doesn't hurt when women come up to me and say "your daughter is so cute, just like her father".
But in all seriousness, this cute little thing reminds me of the importance of having something bigger (or in this case, smaller) than myself. And she also reminds me of how rewarding it is to care for others just because you care, not because you expect something in return.
Tuesdays will continue to be my favorite day of the week. Not because it has to be, but because I want it to be.
I'm going to a wedding this coming weekend and, of course, you know your boys gotta look fresh. So I took my suit to a local tailor to get some alterations done. The tailor, Edgar, was great. Listened to all the things I wanted done to the suit. Answered all my questions. Didn't creep me out like Joey's tailor in Friends
. Words still out on the results, but he's been in business for 24 years so I'm expecting good things. If you need clothing alterations, check out Edgar's Tailoring Inc
and mention the young man with the goofy glasses recommended you. Or just name drop me (Rob Koebke if you didn't know).
Anyways, a little back story on what I'm going to talk about next. I've been listening to a lot of podcasts recently. Entrepreneur and business stuff mostly. Earlier in the day, I'd listened to a podcast featuring the fascinating Noah Kagan
. Noah is CEO of AppSumo and has been involved with other great companies such as Facebook, Mint, and many others. Honestly, he's just a fun guy to listen to talk.
One of Noah's big things is the need to put yourself in uncomfortable situations. One of his suggestions for going about this is what he calls "the coffee challenge". Go to Starbucks, ask for 10% of your coffee, and see what happens. He swears it's liberating, no matter if they give you the discount or not.
So I found myself in Starbucks, ordered a double shot of espresso, went to ask for a 10% discount and...chickened out. Whomp, whomp.
Right after that, I took my suit to my new bestie, Edgar the tailor. After we went through whole procedure, I went to pay. He tells me the price breakdown for each alteration and the total. I think about it for a hot second, and immediately blurt out "how about a 10% first time customer discount?". He looks at me, and then says (in his thick Italian accent) "ok, I'll give you $15 off. No, wait, I'll give you $20 off".
Say what?? Dayum, thanks Edgar. Came out to a little over a 15% discount. I guess it really doesn't hurt to ask. And damn Noah Kagan for being right. The feeling after is quite liberating. And I'm convinced I'd still feel the same even if he'd said no. So, long story short, don't be afraid to ask for something you want. Rejection is only a bad thing if you make it a bad thing. And fear of being rejected is just pointless.