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Big ups to Josh Howey and Danielle Worden!

Josh finished 4th in the state for wraastling and Danielle finished 3rd in the state for powerlifting

Entries in campus improv (39)

Lindsey's Campus Improv Setup

Exactly one week ago we did a elegant couplet of box jumps and kettlebell swings. In a CrossFit gym this is about as boringly simple of a workout as one can conjure up for a class. Share boxes if needed, maybe use dumbbells for kettlebells, and it's even short enough to run in two heats.

Outside of a CrossFit gym this is not as easy to do as it looks. Kettlebell swings were supposed to be heavy, and doing them in a rec gym could mean using a light one (it's awesome, by the way, that Champions Club girls would call a 25-lb. kettlebell light) and increasing the reps. But the real challenge is box jumps; due to liability, most gyms don't have any kind of plyo boxes. So Lindsey made the best out of her situation at Saginaw Valley.

Here's the email she sent:

Did Monday's workout today and I used the window ledge as my box jump. It wasn't really that high but I'm making it work. Also got to round 8 before I hit my head on the metal in the window on my jumps :)

The reason this post made me proud of her is because it's an exact illustration of what the term Campus Improv was meant to be. She was fortunate enough to have kettlebells, but could have easily said, "well we don't have boxes, so I'll just skip the workout." But she made it happen. Regardless of how often she complains about running in the warmup, these actions show someone who is serious about their health. Yes it's probably awkward, yes it's not an ideal setup, and yes she still got a great workout out of it.

Campus Improv Workout - Danielle in South America

This morning at mobility, David Saporito let it be known that Danielle is on the trading block based on 1) her being in Coasta Rica and 2) him watching The 72 Most Dangerous Animals in South America special on Netflix. But from the looks of it, Woorden is doing just fine on her school trip.

Before she left, I told her to make it a goal of doing 7 workouts over the course of the 10 days she was there. But the catch was it only counts as a workout if there was no formal exercise - meaning it can't include things like push-ups, pull-ups, sit-ups, or presses. It had to be informal, natural movements like hiking, trail running, moving stuff, swimming, etc. Here's a picture she sent yesterday of her playing soccer with some elementary school kids.

Gyms and fitness centers were invented only once the picture above and other activities like it stopped becoming common in our daily lives - and notice the word daily. Play, even at adulthood, should be an every day thing. If it was, the Champions Club would be out of business.

I think I have said it here on the site before, but if the most athletic thing you do during your day is a deadlift, you did not have a very productive day. We spend so much time in our little bubble of strength and conditioning that we often find it hard to create workouts that don't involve push-ups and air squats. If you cut the grass with a push mower, you worked out. If you laid down some mulch, you did a workout. If you played a game of pickup basketball, you worked out. The more of these little things we can add to our lives, the more effective our gym workouts become; instead of just trying to undo all the sedentarism (is that a word?) throughout the day, we can then actually add to our fitness.

Danielle is a competitive powerlifter, and her job is to focus on very robotic movements. And it turns out she's probably top-20 in the state of Michigan at it. But the picture above gives her a chance to showcase what that formal stuff has done for her. She's in a pistol shape right now. Her foot is not pointed straight forward. Her shin is not vertical. And both of her shoulders are slouched forward. That is perfectly okay for the time being! The more she practices those safe principles in the controlled environment of the gym, the less likely they'll be a problem outside the gym. In the meantime, she gets to work on her coordination, change of direction, reaction, and strategy. In other words, she's developing her athleticism. Controlling the soccer ball coming at her - even against elementary school kids - is way more athletic than anything she's done in CrossFit or Powerlifting. A good balance of both is what we need!

Campus Improv Eats - 9/6/2017

We are going to start doing this thing where some of our college kids send a picture of their meal options and their meal choice so I can write some stuff about it. This is the first one courtesy of Alyssa Jabara.

Here's the layout:

Alyssa got to campus a little earlier than most other students, so there were slim pickin's as far as food choices go. We have some eggs (probably powdered), sausage, biscuits, and gravy. We can also assume there were probably cold cereal choices somewhere nearby. Here's what Alyssa went with:

Not bad Jabara! It is always good to look at the food on your plate and immediately sort into categories. Here we have:

  • Protein: Eggs (about 2 eggs), sausage
  • Carbohydrate: Buscuit, probably the gravy
  • Fat: Maybe the gravy

When I look at this, the first thing I would notice is the lack of fat (assuming the gravy is mostly carbohydrate - if not, then I'm wrong). Yes, the eggs have some fat, yes the sausage has some fat. But assuming Alyssa has softball conditioning, as well as practice, I would think she could add some extra. This is why the first thing I recommend buying are peanuts, almonds, cashews, and such; most places have some kind of protein available, every place has carbohydrate available (favorable or not), but there is a definite lack of fat. However, I think she balanced out the protein and carbohydrate pretty well (again, assuming the gravy is high in carbs).

Remember, you are always one meal away from being balanced. Even if you don't have perfect options in front of you, you can make the best out of it.

Win or loss?: Considering the options, I count this as a win. A loss would've been losing the sausage and adding another biscuit. Or something along those lines.

Return of Campus + Schedule Update/Reminder

Just a reminder that the winter session times are as follows:

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday

8:30 am (except for MLK day - 11 am instead)

4:30 pm

5:30 pm

6:30 pm


5:30 pm (mobility/makeup wod)


11 am (mobility/makeup wod)


12 noon

1 pm (babies)

1:30 pm (kiddies)


Also, this week will mark the return of the Campus Improv Workouts. I am definitely looking for better participation, so please make the effort and post your workouts to the regular Build a Champion comments. I'll give it two months then see how it looks after that.

Beast Mode: Cap'n Jack Campus Improv

Believe it or not, we are only a few weeks away from Cap'n Jack Trastevere - reigning Athlete of the Spring - coming back to stink up the gym. But he's been hitting workouts hard while away at Kettering.

He sent me a video link on Saturday of his 1 rep max clean attempts. Here'show they went down.

You'll notice he still has that low-back fault we talked about before, but his knees looker pretty good and the weight is very impressive. Also, bonus points for using the Old Weight Room-style metal plates. Those were the days.

Keep up the good work Jack. Hope to see you soon.

The Return of Campus Improv

Guest Post by Alyssa Jabara comes out tonight at 6 pm.

Campus Improv Workouts are officially back in order. This is the third year doing them and I've worked out a couple kinks along the way. If you are new to the crew this time around here's the basic rundown.


  1. Go to the top panel on this website and scroll over Extras. You'll see Campus Improv Workouts listed in the drop-down menu, so click on that.
  2. When you do this, you will see the workout from the previous day and the results listed. In order to see today's workout, log in to the site using the password info I gave you previously. (If you don't have a login, then let me know.)
  3. Try your best to do our workout, and use the other scaling options if necessary.
  4. Post your results and modifications to the Campus Improv section under the workout, not the Build a Champion section. It's easier to keep track that way and it gives you College Kids your own forum.
  5. Sit back and twiddle your thumbs until I post the next Campus Improv.


I try to post the workouts the night before, but sometimes don't get to it until later in the day. If you are pressed for time, just look at and make your best guess as to what we'll do next. Or just make up your own!

Lastly, try to send some pictures of your workout station to the DropBox on the side and we'll feature them either in the Campus Improv section or the main page.

Campus Improv Today's Workout

Hey guys,

Again, sorry for the inconvenience of not having evening sessions today. Luckily, the workout was something you all can do at home, at a track, or at a park. Here's what we rolled with.

Tabata run

Rest 1 minute

Tabata squats

Rest 1 minute

Tabata run

*Keep track of the total distance you covered and the lowest set of squats.

Here's a few notes: Tabata is 20 seconds of work followed by 10 seconds of rest, repeated for 8 cycles. So for this workout, you would run as far as you can in 20 seconds, then rest for 10, then run again for 20, and so on. The distance you cover after 8 sets is the first number you record. We did the run to the 400m mark and back and forth until the time was up.

Then after a minute rest, do the same thing with squats. If your numbers went 12, 12, 14, 11, 9, 8, 10, 11 for each of the rounds, then you would record 8 - which was the lowest.

Finally, after all of that is done you do the run again. This time around, try to keep a consistent pace instead of going out fast at the start.

Post your results to the Build a Champion page and share your experience doing a workout on your own.

The 11 am session had a great time, right kids??