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Entries in brian the trainer (41)

Quote of the Week vol. 255: Today's Workout Does Not Matter

"One workout will never make an athlete, but one workout could break an athlete"

- Brian the Trainer

So let's say this beautiful, delicious, Google-generated pie above represents every day of the Champions Club Summer. There are 70 slices, each representing a session of either high, medium, or low intensity. On August 31, we are hoping that the combination of varied days of training will make Cecilia Steinwascher or Mr. Carey "better" than they were one June 12. Better is a term that can be measured, referenced, weighed, or felt. And no one workout is more important than the other; an overload of either high, medium, or low intensity stuff will not get us the best possible result.

What is this saying? From a physiological perspective, there is almost zero percent chance a single workout, standing alone, will make the overall outcome of the Summer better. It's like voting.

So why show up? It's simple, we're trying to build habits. Habits in movement, habits in lifestyle, and social habits. One workout session might make the difference in Coach Casey getting the coordination to complete a rope climb, or Luke Heide getting the timing for kipping pull-ups, or Abby Walker keeping her spine in line for a deadlift, or Angie hearing something click about nutrition, or Jay finding an extra gear he didn't know he had, or Maddy saying more than two words to someone. That brain connection then opens up new possibilities for workouts going forward.

In short, our goal today is to make your brain better. That is what we can control. I can't physically make myself stronger right now. I can't run up to the gym and make my endurance better today. Those things are adaptations that happen over time - like the Summer, for instance - and based on what the sum of tons of daily stuff. In short, it'soutof our control right now. What you can do right now, however, is mess it up. Overtraining, under-recovering, and overloading messes it up.

If you feel like dying after a workout, then that was part of the grand plan. If your legs might fall off any moment, that was part of the grand plan. If you drive off feeling like you have more in the tank, that was part of the plan. Again, it doesn't matter today! So don't mess it up and come back ready for whatever is thrown at you tomorrow!

CFJ Feature: Street Cred

If you are on a basketball team, how good should your coach be at basketball? If you are on a softball team, does your coach need to have played softball before? What about for CrossFit? Longtime seminar coach and HQ member Chuck Carswell gives his input on the matter at a recent Level-2 Cert.

One of the prime examples I've seen of this is Shannon. At track practices the past few springs, Shannon seems to have a really good connection with the top sprinters because, among other reasons, she'll do workout with them sometimes. I've seen her line up next to James Murray - one of our four fastest kids - and hang right with him on a 50-meter sprint. You can bet that the other kids, and James, will be all ears any time she makes a suggestion about how to make them faster.

On the flipside, I can easily empathize with kids who don't trust their coaches based on how they appear at their sport or activity. The coach definitely does not have to be a Shannon-caliber, but it helps when the athletes can see the coach working alongside them. The only exceptions are when the coach's product is so blatantly better than everything else (Coach Glassman, Dean Smith, etc.) that their personal abilities aren't taken into consideration.

For me, Brian the Trainer was the first coach I really noticed was part of the daily physical grind with his athletes, and I try my best to keep that almost 12 years later.

Quote of the Week vol. 246

"You know Chris it's funny, the track people think we're doing football workouts, and the football people think we're doing track workouts."

- Brian the Trainer, somewhere around 2010.

Endurance people want endurance. Weightlifters want weightlifting. Powerlifters powerlifting. And to get really good at those things, you need to specialize at some point. Just what exactly that point is is not always clear for both athletes and coaches.

We do CrossFit. Just CrossFit. A simple and potent blend of everything; we would not take a decline in any area at the expense of another. And I have yet to see an athlete that I don't believe will see the results they want from this blend if they are patient enough. Football players should be doing Murph and cross country runners should be doing max effort back squat.

From the Vault: Lifts 4 Gifts

Aside from the fundraising and community building, Lifts 4 Gifts gives athletes a great opportunity to pr on their lifts. The Champions Club, in specific, doesn't really compete in any CrossFit events, so with Lifts 4 Gifts they get to experience a HYPE setting that gets the adrenaline going. Here's a few prs from the vault:

Mrs. Carey - 2015

Mr. Z - 2014

Brian the Trainer - 2011

Remember guys, Saturday at 9 am. Our gym.

CFJ Feature: Me (Again)

So as Mel posted on the side, I was featured in a recent CrossFit Journal article where they interview affiliate owners about a preset list of questions ranging from their best desicions, worst decisions, free time, and surprises. I gave this back in late-September and thought is was going to be left on the shelves, but over the weekend I glanced at a picture of The Freaks in the parking lot and knew that was it.

10 Questions with CrossFit Athletic Group

Notable mentions:

  • Mama V, Mrs. Pip, Mrs. Carey
  • Brian the Trainer
  • Shannon
  • Coach T
  • The infamous "raising my rabbits" excuse

Also, credit to Nate for sending me the original files of the pictures. Besides the one above, his were featured and a main reason why I was allowed to conduct an interview in the first place.

Lifts 4 Gifts 2017

Yes kids, this is the official Lifts 4 Gifts confirmation and announcement, AND it's not even December yet. You should all be proud of Jarrod and me. If you are not proud, for some reason, then your expectations are set way too high. But like I said, it's official now. Here's the essentials.

When: Saturday, December 16, 2017

Time: 9 am

Where: Champions Club/CrossFit Athletic Group. 32301 Stephenson Hwy in Madison Heights

Donation: $20 (or toys)

Is Nasty Nas in the area? About to cause mass hysteria?This event started between the Champions Club and CrossFit BMW in 2011. As with most things in those days, it was the brainchild of Brian the Trainer. Since we could not hold a fundraiser at the school, Jarrod kindly opened up BMW to host, and Lifts 4 Gifts was born. It has undergone a few changes over the years - from location, to the actual lifts performed, to the prizes, but the essentials have always been the same: set a few pr's, keep the form looking mildly acceptable, help families less fortunate than us, and keep the ties strong between the Champions Club and BMW.

This year will run very similar to last year: a time cap for the max back squat, time cap for the max press, then deadlift ladder. You're welcome Wendy! The specifics of the ladder will be revealed closer to the event, but you can read this post for a general overview. We will also open up the event to a few outsiders, so be on the lookout. And, of course, we will all be eager to see if our favorite fan from North Carolina will be participating again:

Other than that, most of you know what to expect. Here's few bullet points to reference if need be:

Donation? Yes, this is a fundraiser first, competition second, and the proceeds will help local families in need. $20 has been the baseline, but if you can't swing that then you can bring in a few toys to donate. Cash works best, and any checks can be made out to the Madison Heights Goodfellows.

What should I bring? Other than the donation, boots or a change of shoes would be a good call if it is raining or showing.

How long will it last? Usually we get everyone out in an hour and a half.

What if it's snowing? Unless the roof collapses, Lifts 4 Gifts will still be on as scheduled. Last year it was too hectic trying to reschedule. If it's a blizzard, just do whatever you can.

Speaking of the roof... yes, the roof should be in tact and keeping the outsides outside. God I wish I could say that with complete confidence... but so far so good!

Anything new this year? We painted the floor. A few new pieces of artwork. A holy and rusty place of matrimony. And did I mention a roof!

Will Jarrod be there on time? Of course not.

Who is Mel? Well, we are not entirely sure, but we think we can rule out 2pac and Bigfoot. Most likely a very nice middle-aged manboy from North Carolina who loves Utah football and has been doing CrossFit out of his garage since the late 2000's.

How will Brian rig this workout in his favor? Excellent question dear boy or girl. If we knew the answer to that, he would already have another method in his pocket. My guess is something to do with a power index and the One Direction Soundtrack.

Will we have enough plates? Whoa boy, I hope so. If Michelle is participating then probably not. Anyone have any spares? 45's? Tires? Trucks?

Any specific gym etiquette we should know about? Space will be a bit crammed, so just be courteous. Again, this is a fundraiser first, not liftoff. Don't be that guy. And strict no-MSU dress code.

Is that handsome boy named Jacob single? Indeed. Single and looking to mingle.

Divisions and prizes? In the past it's been a teenage and adult division, male and female for each, with a small prize awarded to winners. Not sure how it will work this year, but we'll make it up on the fly as always.

Bold predictions? Fine. 35 people in attendance. $500 raised + toys. Jarrod and I are both talked into participating. Somebody drops the metal plates and scratches up Erika Banet's name on the floor. Somebody complains about having spotters on back squats. Katie Shakes and Michelle have a one-on-one fight to the death to settle a tie in their total. Alan participates, single-handedly throwing off the entire plans for distributing squat racks. Somehow Brian still wins.

Hope to see you guys there!

Leader of the New School: Katie Shakes

This has been some time in the making, but Champions Club reigning Athlete of the Summer Katie Shakes is officially on staff with Brian the Trainer at Bishop Foley, serving as the head JV softball coach.

Shakes spent the last four years on the Warren Mott coaching staff, two as a varsity assistant and two as the freshman/JV head coach. Brian must have some serious recruiting power to bring Shakes on board, and she will also be giving Jacob and Brian a run for their money as the Strongest Person on Foley's Campus.

But in all seriousness, I think Bishop Foley got a diamond in the rough with this hire. Shakes has shown in her previous coaching stints the willingness and patience to work on individual skills with her athletes outside of practice hours - which is a missing piece on most coaching staffs. This sounds like a great fit in my opinion, and we'll see for sure when spring comes around.

Congrats Shakes!