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Archive for the ‘Nor-Cal 40's’ Category

NorCal Masters 2013

Wednesday, January 23rd, 2013

This one is by Bryan:


Over the weekend, I coached Rich LeFurgy at the NorCal Masters, a regional CrossFit competition hosted by TJ’s Gym. The event was held in Richmond at the Craneway Pavilion. In 1931, the 525,000 square foot space was a Ford Motor Company assembly plant, the largest assembly plant on the West Coast. The building’s history and industrial design provided a perfectly suited backdrop for the sweaty 40-60+ year old competitors to grunt and cuss their way through the competition’s three major and minor WODs.

The three major WODs, 54% of the competition’s value, were cute named, hard nosed workouts.

The first was “Oly Smokes,” an eleven-minute workout where competitors would perform two five minute EMOMs with a one-minute rest in between. In the first EMOM, competitors did over-barbell burpees and one snatch. In the second EMOM, competitors did toes to bar and one clean. The workout’s scoring was divided into two pieces, 50% was the total number of burpees and toes to bar, and the other 50% total weight lifted. If an athlete missed any of their lifts, they would get a zero for that round.

The second workout was “Hellenita,” a play on the name brand, metcon-killer, “Helen.” The workout was essentially a ten-minute AMRAP (as many rounds as possible) of 150m shuttle run, 10 kettle bell swings, and five pull-ups. The workout, like “Oly Smokes,” had two scoring segments, 50% of the workout’s value was in completing 3 rounds as fast as possible, and the second, finishing with the most rounds at the end of the ten minutes.

The last workout was the “Fat Gripz Master Chipper,” a for time workout composed of a 20 cal row, 50m bear crawl, 13 thrusters, 13 up and over box jumps, 13 deadlifts, 13 wall balls, 13 ring push ups, 13 wall ball, 13 deadlifts, 13 up and over box jumps, 13 thrusters, 50m bear crawl, and a 20 cal row. There were no schemes to this workout, just a slog to the finish.

The floaters, 46% of the competition value, were:

  • “Yougin:” A three minute workout where athletes had to do a max weighted pull-up, 50% of the workout’s value, and one minute to get as many 10m farmers carries as possible. The farmers-carries were done with a kettle bell.
  • ” Whippersnapper:” A workout where athletes had to get as many ball slams as possible in six minutes after rowing, 1000m for women and 1200m for men. (Ugly)
  • “Junior:” A for time workout where athletes had to perform 35 air-squats, run about 40m, grab two plates, run them back to the starting line, load them onto a wheelbarrow, push the wheelbarrow about 20m, perform another 35 air-squats, push the wheelbarrow through the finish line, and then perform 100 double unders.

A quick aside to all of you who have said, “Bryan, why do we have to do 100 double unders? That’s so stupid. In fact, you’re so stupid. Only an idiot sadist with no empathy would program 100 double unders. Only a person, should the justice system not breakdown on us, destined to do a medium to long-term stint in San Quentin would program 100 double unders. Who can do a 100 double unders, honestly? Can you do 100 double unders? I bet you can’t because no one can do 100 double unders. Not a single person I know, at least those with decent lifestyles and health, happy families, can do 100 double unders. None of my friends, and I emphasize friends here, can do 100 double unders. Only sick-o, twenty-five year olds hopped up on that new stuff can do 100 double unders. You know what? You shove those double unders. And do that for time.” Wrong. I watched a 72 year old man squat and double under his ass off, after pushing a 300+ pound wheelbarrow half a football field. You’re going to be seeing a lot of 100 double unders for time. DU development phase here we come.  Now that I’ve gotten that out of my system, please allow me to continue:

The men and women that distinguished themselves from the pack, the top three men and women from the 60+ and 55-59 year old age categories, and the top five from the rest of the categories, competed in the finals. The finals were a seven-minute, ladder style workout where every minute the workload effectively doubled.

Rich unfortunately did not get to compete in the finals. Going into the final workout, Rich was in a four-way tie for third place (a symptom of either fierce competition or a sloppy scoring system, maybe both), and they chose to break the tie by selecting the man with the most first place finishes.

From the workouts, Rich and I found a few pieces of his game we need to focus on going into The Open, which starts on March 6th this year. Rich’s highlights from the weekend included a second place finish on the Hellanita WOD, and a PR on his weighted pull-up, a piece he has been working on diligently for the last couple months.

As the open gets closer, should you be  interested in participating, and I suggest you all do, please come up and speak to me about how to maximize the couple weeks you have left before it starts.

Jill & Amanda are off to Regionals

Friday, May 18th, 2012

So our two lovely lady-dragons are off to regionals today.  They’ve been preparing for and dissecting the workouts for months now, and finally the day is here.  There are actually 33 girls total competing going “individual” because many of the other lady CrossFitters have opted to compete on the regional teams, but those are 33 of the fittest women in the whole of Northern California including several former CrossFit Games Finals athletes.  Some of these athletes have the luxury of being able to dedicate significant time and resources to their training, but both Amanda and Jill have had their plates full for quite some time.  Amanda not only coaches, but is now part-owner of The Cave, co-runs the gymnastics program, works part time for the state park service, and is going to school to better prepare herself for a career in health care.  (Will she be a doctor?  nurse? paramedic? physician’s assistant? Yet to be determined.)  Jill is only a full time attorney, wife, mother of two young boys, 43 years old, and in the middle of moving.  How they both find the time and energy to train the way they do is difficult to comprehend.  Both of our ladies have relatively modest expectations, mainly because they are humble girls, but my predictions are that Jill will establish herself solidly in the top 10 during the first workout if not in the top 5 and then she’ll be fighting for one of the top slots, surprised to find herself easily in the top 18 in workout #6.  Amanda will have solid performances in the first few workouts, meeting her goals of finishing under the time cap and then she’ll get to crush workout #5.  (Sorry, I can’t help myself- I like making predictions.  It’s fun!)  No matter how they place though, our ladies are bound to have a wonderful experience, meet great people and make new friendships and we are very, very proud of them.  Here is the CrossFit Games page with the event times for each day: You have to scroll down and click on “Regional Event Details” for Friday, Saturday, or Sunday to see the start times for each event.  There will be two workouts a day for three days for a total of six brutal regional workouts.  Roger and Bryan will be down at the Santa Clara fairgrounds today coaching our ladies and keeping us up to date.  Be sure to wish these incredible girls luck in their Games’ endeavors!

That's our little Jill Sprague on the right with Terri at the 2010 Nor-Cal 40's.  This is what a fire-breathing lady dragon looks like.

That's our little Jill Sprague on the right with Terri at the 2010 Nor-Cal 40's. This is what a fire-breathing lady dragon looks like.

August of 2009... back when Amanda was a baby-Crossfitter at the ripe old age of... 23?

August of 2009... back when Amanda was a baby-Crossfitter at the ripe old age of... 23?

These are the WOD’s that Amanda & Jill will be facing over the next 3 days.  They should have a blast!

indworkouts_1400_wbgGood luck, Ladies.  We love you both!

Standards for the Nor-Cal 40’s

Saturday, January 28th, 2012

Here are the standards for the Nor-Cal 40’s that are taking place on Sunday at the Craneway Pavillion.  So far the hardest movement that’s come up in the known workouts are fairly heavy squat snatches.  (125# for men & 85# for women).  Both Jacqui and Jill have been practicing these as well as the other movements in the workouts.  (Unfortunately Noah has an aggravated achilles tendon and will not be able to attend.)  Their first workouts start at 10am for Jill and 10:15am for Jacqui, as they’re in the later heats.  Come by to cheer on our girls and support the regional Bay Area CrossFit community.  You’re sure to meet some really great people from up and down the west coast.  Cost for attendance is $5 and there will be food for sale as well.  If last year was any indication this promises to be a fantastic, well-run event.

Please post some encouraging comments to our two lady athletes or let us know if you plan on swinging by.

Nor-Cal 40’s 2012 Coming up on Sunday January 29th at Craneway Pavillion

Saturday, January 21st, 2012

The 2012 edition of TJ’s Gym’s Nor-Cal 40’s is coming up next on Sunday of next weekend.  We have a little team of three attending with our own defending Champ Jill Sprague ready (sort of… she’s never really ready) to defend her title as last year’s Female Champ!  Jacqui Miranda is joining her on the women’s side and Noah Guyot is competing is representing the Cave men this year!  I wanted to let all you Caver’s know in case any one is interested in coming to support our little team.  Last year Big Bad TJ’s Gym put on an AWESOME event.  It was very professional, fun, and the workouts were brilliant.  All of the info for the 2012 Nor Cal 40’s is here, in the Nor Cal 40’s page, of course.  The event will be held at the Craneway Pavillion in Richmond.  Competition begins at 8am.  Here’s a snipet of the info off of the NorCal 40’s website:

Check-in time is 7:00am
Competition begins at 8:00am
Location: Craneway Pavilion (
Free parking
There will be food for sale, provided by Craneway, that is protein friendly but not all paleo. You ARE allowed to bring your own food into the facility.
There will be a full bar, also for sale by Craneway.
There will be a $5 spectator fee (kids 15 and under free).

Here’s a little video from last year’s competition for you to enjoy:

Here’s another one.  Terri Rivero is an athlete from CrossFit Petaluma coached by Sarah Pierce.

Sarah Pierce and Dan Schmieding, are owners of CrossFit Petaluma and CrossFit Sonoma County respectively and are long-time friends of The Cave, formerly known as CrossFit Marin.

And here’s another one of our favorite beast-mom:

Lastly I would like to give a special thanks to Joanna Sapir, founder of CrossFit Santa Rosa for coaching Jill during last year’s Nor  Cal 40’s finals when I could not stay due to work back at the gym.  Thank you, Joanna for all your help and support!