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Congratulations to Elizabeth Banet - Athlete of the Summer 2015

See her featured editorial here

Schedule Update: Thanksgiving Weekend

The schedule for the remainder of this week will be as follows:


9 am



9 am

6 pm


Saturday and Sunday

Normal times

JZ, Sydney, and Mr. Z won the Thanksgiving workout last year. Will they be around to defend their title tomorrow? Come and find out.

One of Those Reminders... + Pterodactyl Sighting

A lot of times I find myself saying that I don't have time to work out. And you guys all know how it goes- you're at a Big 10 school and you wanna go to football/basketball games with your friends. You're a real life adult and you have a job, and God forbid, kids. And while we've had posts like this before, it's always a good refresher as we get into fall to think of something before you shirk a workout.

Instead of saying “I don’t have time” try saying “It’s not a priority,” and see how that feels. Often, that’s a perfectly adequate explanation. I have time to iron my sheets, I just don’t want to. But other things are harder. Try it: “I’m not going to edit your résumé, sweetie, because it’s not a priority.” “I don’t go to the doctor because my health is not a priority.” If these phrases don’t sit well, that’s the point. Changing our language reminds us that time is a choice. If we don’t like how we’re spending an hour, we can choose differently.

So if you're noticing that you haven't hit a workout in a while, try this out and see if you change your mind. 

 In other news, Tara and her family made their way across the Atlantic for her mom's 50th birthday. We managed to meet up outside the Colosseum and I got to show her the stomping grounds. Here we are (what else would we do) eating gelato.  

And where would we be without a classic handstand picture?


Lifts 4 Gifts 2015

When you are dealing with myself and Jarrod you know planning is not going to be the best. But either way we are finally ready to announce the official date for the 5th annual Lifts 4 Gifts fundraiser. Here’s the specifics:

Date: Saturday, December 12

Time: 9 am

Location: CrossFit BMW 3124 Cass Ave in Detroit

Please sign the waiver here. Suggested donnation: $20 bucks or a few toys.

Letter from last year:

The partnership between these two gyms came about in a rather unusual way, but the combination of the kids from the Champions Club and the adults from BMW makes for an awesome environment to celebrate PR's and raise money for people who need it.

The event has gone very well in the past because both gyms have a good understanding about the goal of this event. Since there will be many new participants for this year’s fundraiser, I just want to take this opportunity to explain the purpose behind Lifts 4 Gifts.

The workout that will take place at Lifts 4 Gifts is the CrossFit Total with a minor twist. The lifts will still be the Back squat, Press, and Deadlift, but we will be placing a time cap to perform a 1 rep max instead of the traditional three attempts. The specifics will be determined on site. There will also be an adult and kids age group – with the winners for both male and female receiving a small prize.

That’s the outline of the event. But there are a few more points to understand.

First, it is going to be fun to lift heavy weights and see our friends do the same, but bottom line: our goal for this is to raise money. Think of it like the Century 21 Home Run Derby at the MLB All-Star Game. The players hit a crapload of home runs and the spectators have a great time. But in the end, they raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for the Boys and Girls Club of America.

With that being said, we see personal records set here all the time – sometimes in all three lifts. There is quite a bit of excitement/pressure (in a good way) in the gym with crowds cheering on every lift. This gives new athletes a taste of what it might be like to compete in a CrossFit or weightlifting competition. With great athletes and coaches in the building, naturally the results are going to be great as well. It’s inevitable. And the cool thing about it is the pr’s never come out of the context of the purpose of the event.

We will also be keeping an eye on form. Keep in mind that we are dealing with CrossFit BMW and Champions Club – probably the two gyms with the highest form standards in Michigan. Although Jarrod and I will be allowing more slop on lifts than normal, we won’t be letting things get too out of hand. Lifting meet rules apply, but only after form/safety is taken into consideration.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to drop us a line below. Official signup will be on the boards of the respective gyms. But feel free to sign up to comments as well.


Connection on Pushing Things

In the gym we use movements like the push-up, dip, handstand push-up, and press to improve your overall ability to push things in real life. However in real life, the things we push rarely include proportionally loaded cylinders or a perfectly level surface. We push a lawn mower than runs over bumps, or push ourselves off the ground as we get up to run, or push a blizting linebacker.

All of those things are not perfectly set up for us to push with stability. Therefore, we have to create that stability ourself. We can reproduce this in the weight room by removing connection. The most simple way of doing this is by using rings.

Day 4 of Fundamentals addresses this multiple times; the first being with the push-up. We do push-ups on Day 1 and Day 2, so by the time the athlete gets to Day 4 he/she gets probably 60-80 good reps in during the sessions. This is when we introduce the concept of removing connection. The video below is of recent graduate Tim Asmar last Monday when we went from push-ups on the ground to push-ups on the rings. Check it out.

Tim had never been on rings before and it exposed some holes in his strength and position that may not have been noticed doing regular push-ups. So as we see more rings in the warmup, keep it in mind that we are using it as a way to challenge your overall ability to push things. The mechanics should look the same.

Introducing... Katie Shakes! **Jazz Hands**

You can't think of the Champions Club without thinking of Katie Shakes. She was a contender for the perfect attendance award for the summer, which has only been achieved once (ironically by another Katie). We all know (and love) Katie Shakes as one of the strongest, nicest people you'll meet who isn't Mrs. Pip.

BUT did you know that in between lifting cars and tipping cows, Katie Shakes plays the saxophone? AND did you also know that she's playing in the Macomb Community College Jazz Concert this December?

Well, now you do. Tickets are only $8, so if you like jazz music, come show your support for one of our own!

New Graduate: Tim

Tim Asmar finished Fundamentals this morning with a 4:21 effort on Fran with 15# dumbbells and ring rows.

Tim seems to be cut from the same cloth as the Shakeses and Kavanaughs of the world. Exceedingly polite, seemingly nervous to make a mistake, and more athletic than they give themselves credit for. His hollow rocks are on point, skiled movements look like they will be coming soon with good attendance, and unweighting was a breeze. And to top things off, he got his first rope climb today.

I think if he sticks with it he will fit right in with the College Kids very well. Plus he's a biology person, so we all know he will have at least one gray-haired hippie fan among our ranks.

Either way, welcome to The Champions Club.

First rope climb

The Pokemon Poll

This week's is a request from Faust and may bring about some heated altercations. In fact, sometimes this topic is religion to folks.

Which starter Pokemon did you pick in the original Red/Blue versions?