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Archive for the ‘Tough Mudder’ Category

Tough Mudder Follow-up

Tuesday, September 25th, 2012

Sorry I didn’t get the programming up for this week.  I was away running the Tough Mudder.

Most of The Cave Team after finishing.

Most of The Cave Team after finishing.

For those of you who have been living under a rock and don’t know what the Tough Mudder is, it’s a “hardcore 10-12 mile obstacle course designed by British Special Forces to test your all around strength, stamina, mental grit, and camaraderie. ”  It’s great fun, and a decent test of the physical and mental strength you develop in CrossFit.

Next year, the course is in July.  Start making plans to attend.

Tough Mudder Completed

Monday, September 24th, 2012

A group of twelve Cavers participated in the Tahoe Tough Mudder yesterday. The course involved 11+ miles of “running” up and down the trails at Northstar and 20 obstacles that were interspersed through the course. The course started with scaling a 6′ wall shortly followed by crawling through gravelly mud under barbed wire. Then we headed up to climb a tower and jump off a 15′ ledge into cold muddy water. These three obstacles set the tone for the day.

Other obstacles included jumping off a ledge into ice water having to fully submerse to get under a board placed in the obstacle to force you under. That was immediately followed by monkey swings on rings (which was pretty tough considering at this point your hands were numb). There were higher walls (up to about 11′) that had to be scaled. Lots of crawling through mud. Two obstacles that involved high voltage wires. One where you were had to crawl through muddy water with wires dangling from above. Some of them were live and if you touched them you got a jolt. It felt like you were being punched. Since you were in water you would also get shocked if someone nearby got hit.

We did have one incident. Jacqui M. was scaling the tallest of the wall obstacles using Nick as her base and missed a foot placement, which caused her to slip off the top of the wall. She fell and hurt her knee. We do not have final information yet on the specifics so check in with her when you get the chance. She had to bow out of the rest of the course at this point (it was about 7 miles in).

The general theme of the Tough Mudder is great. It is not a race, which is reinforced through many humorous signs placed through the course. The spirit is to help your fellow mudders where needed. Nick W. spent much time at the base of the walls boosting people up and over. Some people just need extra encouragement to give things a try, or to keep going, and the crowd is ready to provide that support. One of the biggest examples of this helping attitude is one of the final obstacles called “Everest”. This is an 11 foot high quarter pipe (or a relatively short warped wall for you Ninja Warrior fans). You could see this obstacle before the start of the race, which at that time I figured was going to be trivial given I’ve done the 14′ warped wall at David Campbell’s course, as well as the one at Tempest. However, after an 11+ mile hill run it looked a little bigger. When we arrived there was already a ton of folks on top of the wall holding hands down to receive other mudders and help them up. I took my run in a gap between folks and made  it up (had to try unassisted first of course), then turned around and waited for others. Nick and Dave H. were with me at that point and were able to make it up unassisted, then we lied down and caught the hands of other mudders behind us and hoisted them over the wall. Quite a bit of time was spent here helping. It didn’t matter if you knew people, you just helped.

Give this event a try. There will certainly be a group of Cavers going. Check in with Nick to keep tabs on future Tough Mudder training courses. It is a ton of fun with a group of people. You’ll get to know people better because there’s a lot of time to chat on the run/walk segments between obstacles. Suffering and overcoming together is a great experience.

More Events

Tuesday, June 5th, 2012

First, we’re taking steps to make registering for events easy for you.  From now on, if you have questions or would like to register for an event, you can send an email to

Learn how to not get killed by this guy...

Learn how to not get killed by this guy...

In addition to the upcoming Gymnastics Seminar on June 9th (which you should all attend), there are two other events starting up at the end of this month.

The Self Defense Seminar on Saturday, June 30th, from 1:00PM to 4:00PM.  We will will cover much more than fancy ninja moves.  We’ll discuss the Three Fights, the legal and ethical concerns of fighting, types of violent encounters, and ambush training, as well as violence inoculation and a handful of practical techniques.  There’s a lot more to this class than you think.  Cost for members is $50.00.

Also, we’re starting our Tough Mudder Training course again!  The class will cover strategies for overcoming the major obstacles in the Tough Mudder, as well as give you good training tips for preparing for the event in your regular training.  This class series will be held mostly off-site (the first one will be in the gym).  Class topics are as follows

  • Class 1: Climbing & Crawling Obstacles.  Location: The Cave.
  • Class 2: Hill and Trail Running.  Location: Turtle Rock, Tiburon.
  • Class 3: Swimming and Water Hazards.  Location: Pool TBD.
  • Class 4: Hypothermia Inoculation.  Location: Stinson Beach.

This class starts on June 30th, and will be held every Saturday from 5:00 PM - 6:00 PM.  Cost for members is $100.00 for the series or $50.00 for a drop-in class.  There may also be a $15.00 pool entrance fee for class #3.  If you took the first session of the Tough Mudder Training, you can do this one at a discount, $80.00 for the series or $40.00 for a single class.

To register for any or all of these events, or if you have additional questions, email:


Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

Swimming is a useful and, in my opinion, necessary component of general physical fitness.  We all know the basic benefits of swimming, which you hear anytime somebody talks about it: no impact, works all muscle groups, etc.  But I’m going to tell you why it’s a good addition to CrossFit.

Lalanne Fitness demonstrating an awesome WOD in the Bay.

Lalanne Fitness demonstrating an awesome WOD in the Bay.

1.  It helps improve shoulder mobility.  Every stroke, you really need to concentrate on lengthening your body and reaching with your arms.  You’ll do this a couple hundred times during a swimming workout, but without the stress of a barbell or your bodyweight.

2.  It develops midline stamina - particularly in the hollow position.  CrossFit has a large focus on the posterior chain, but I’ve seen plenty of people who are weak in the hollow position.  Having a strong hollow body position is useful for many gymnastics skills, as well as for maintaining proper muscular balance.  Swimming lets you work the hollow position for a considerable amount of time, at a lower resistance level than out of the water.

3.  It teaches you how to breathe.  Everybody knows how to breathe, obviously, but controlling your breathing during a CrossFit workout allows you keep your heart rate lower and not feel like you’re an inch from dying.  When you swim, no matter how tired you are, you simply cannot take rapid gasping breaths, you have to focus on taking regular, deep breaths.  If your training includes underwater swimming, your body will learn to make better use of oxygen.

4.  It is excellent for recovery.  Most people don’t like ice baths, despite the amazing anti-inflammatory effects.  If you’re swimming in cool water (doesn’t have to be ice cold), you can get a similar effect.

5.  CrossFit is supposed to help you develop the athletic ability to do just about anything well.  One of the main ideas of the CrossFit philosophy is to be ready for whatever life throws at you.  Well, 70% of the Earth’s surface is covered with water, so if you want to be ready for life, there’s no excuse to not know how to swim.

So, why am I writing a post on swimming so early in the year?  Well, it just so happens that we are doing a swimming class as part of our Tough Mudder Training Course.  Even if you have no plans to do Tough Mudder, you should still come to this class because we’re teaching things that are so useful and beneficial to your overall fitness.  Also, it’s fun!

If you’re interested, sign up on the Tough Mudder Training registration form in the gym.  Or you can meet us at the YMCA pool this Saturday (03/24).  Class starts at 6:00 PM, and costs $40.00.

See you in the gym– or at the pool.

Eventful little Saturday at The Cave.

Sunday, March 11th, 2012

So what went on at the gym on Saturday?  Well, besides the regular run of morning classes (about 13 CF + Parkour + Gymnastics +Pre-school classes all together.  Attendance fluctuates between 90-150 people all together within 3 hours of classes)  we also had a CPR Certification course for our trainers, CF Games open workouts, a Tough Mudder prep course, as well as Kid’s Night Out!  Our little gym keeps getting busier & busier!  Here are some pictures:

Nick instructs Russ & Jasmin.

Nick instructs Russ & Jasmin.

Rich practices his chest compressions with Jasmin & Russ looking on.

Rich practices his chest compressions with Jasmin & Russ looking on.

Do you know what the ratio of chest compressions to breaths is supposed to be for adults according to the 2010 American Heart Association Guidelines for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation?  That would be 30:2!

Russ gives 2 breaths

Russ gives 2 breaths

Tomio practices his chest compressions  The ratio is 30:2 compressions:breaths for adults.

Tomio practices his chest compressions while using the Automatic External Defibrillator. The ratio is 30:2 compressions:breaths for adults.

Now you can rest assured that not only do you have two experienced EMT’s coaching you, but most of the staff is current with their CPR certification as well.  A special thanks to our own Amanda Norton for running us through the course and keeping us up to date and prepared in the cave of an emergency!  Nick also assisted.  We even got to hear some great EMT stories from the both of them.  It’s great to have so much expertise in the gym!  We’ll be scheduling more of these later on which will be open to our clients and external trainers.  Keep an eye on the calendar for the next one that gets scheduled.

On another note, we had several athletes take on the CrossFit Games 12.3 Open WOD:

18 min AMRAP of:

15 Box Jumps  (24″/20″)

12 Push Press  (115#/75#)

9 Toes-2-Bar

Agnes kicked it off early hitting the workout at about 7:30am.  Several other athletes attacked it throughout the morning with Roger closing the CF Games day out after the CPR certification.  I got some good pictures of Roge.  Enjoy:

15 Box Jumps... Plyo style for Roge

15 Box Jumps... Plyo style for Roge

12 Push-Press at 115 lbs

12 Push-Press at 115 lbs

Roge Kips the toes-2-bar

Roge Kips the toes-2-bar

Good form

Pushing past 8 rounds...



Notice the cool cargo net setup attached to the tire in the background.  That was for Nick’s Tough Mudder Prep Course!

We also had coach Ryder Darcy run the kids through a fun night of Kid’s Nighout Out form 5:30-10pm.   Kid’s Night Out is the 2nd & 4th Saturday of every month and the next one will be on Saturday March 24th.

Tough Mudder Training Next Week!

Tuesday, February 28th, 2012

Hey!  Tough Mudder training starts next week.  The first session will be on Monday, March 5th, at 11:00 in the gym.  We’ll repeat that session on Saturday, March 10th for those that can’t make the Monday times.

Sadly, we will not be running through fire... yet.

Sadly, we will not be running through fire... yet.

Here’s the schedule and locations, so far.

Class 1: Monday, March 5, 11:00 AM / Saturday March 10, 6:00 PM:

The Cave.  Hanging, Climbing & Crawling Obstacles.

Class 2: Monday, March 12, 11:00 AM / Saturday, March 17, 6:00 PM:

Turtle Rock, Tiburon.  Hills & Trail Running.

Class 3: Monday, March 19, 11:00 AM / Saturday, March 24, 6:00 PM:

Location TBD.  Swimming & Water Safety

Class 4: Monday, March 26, 11:00 AM / Saturday, March 31, 6:00 PM:

Stinson Beach.  Water Obstacles & Hypothermia.

If you’re still interested, make sure you sign up!