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Welcome to the Champions Club Summer 2018!

Next Theme Workout: Shark Week/Hawaiian Mashup - Saturday at 10 am!


Entries in from the vault (87)

From the Vault: Jurassic Smash

In Summer 2015 we rolled out a new theme workout - Jurassic Smash - in honor of the first Jurassic World movie that was coming out at the time (and the corresponding Blizzard from DQ). Since the sequel will be coming out this summer (if it's not out already), you can probably expect us to bring back the Jurassic Smash workout at some point. It was definitely a tough one! Here's the highlights from Summer 2015 and the recap post to go along with it.

We still haven't decided on the new Theme Workout for this Summer, but we have a few ideas. Stay tuned!

From the Vault: More Squats

With option of Hero workouts that came up at the gym (Murph and Michael), we got exposed to a very significant amount of volume (meaning reps, duration, etc.) of exercise - specifically in the legs. This, to me, is a very important part of training that I definitely don't think should be an every day thing, or even every week thing, but something that we should be able to recover from. The benefit of having a lot of strength and stamina in your legs will obviously help in workouts but shows itself most outside the gym - especially in sports. Last year I did a post with some video from our Groves basketball team.

Case Study: We're Doing More Squats!

Drew might be our best player on Groves, and we need him on the court a lot. Let's say we coach him up, and the rest of the team, and break the habit by tonight at 5 pm. Great! The first few possessions are shut down! The thing is, we are on defense anywhere from 40-50 times per game. If Marygrove math serves me right, that's around 16-20 minutes(!) Drew needs to be spending in a squat - or else he is a liability.

In sports when your legs get tired you either find yourself out of position, or come out of the game. Neither scenario is desirable. In fact, watch an elite level track race and you'll see how most, if not all, of the runners don't look out of breath at the finish line - which tells you that it's not cardio endurance and conditioning that is missing.

In real life, the repercussions of having poor stamina in the legs looks like slouching, sitting, and breathing heavy after walking from the couch to the fridge.

For most workouts I scale the reps, weight, range of motion, etc. in order for us to keep intensity. Then on those workouts I do preserve the volume, the reason behind it often has to do with building stamina in the legs. Squats, lunges, pistols, kb swings, running, and jump ropes all can go a long way to move the needle in that direction, and the less active we are during the rest of our day, the more we'll need to do formal exercise to make up for it.

New Graduate: Josh Sinagoga Moving Up the Ladder

Summer 2013 was a really great season in Champions Club lore, and one of the ring leaders for that was my cousin, Josh. He was entering his final year as Northwood University's backup quarterback and decided he wanted to come and train with us while he was home for the summer. The bonus for us was that be brought in 3 of his teammates to join in: Ryan "Buzz" Spicuzzi, Cam Jackson, and the infamous Alex Faust.

After his playing career concluded, Josh worked his way onto Central Michigan's coaching staff, first as a "quality control" coach, then as a grad assistant where he worked with the receivers. Through a bunch of connections and other interwebs through various coaching trees, Josh landed himself an interview at the University of Iowa last week. He called me tonight to let me know that he got the job and is headed Iowa City as we speak!

Josh is officially a B1G coach!

As far as I know, he'll be working with the receivers again, and working under the Offensive Coordinator. Not sure what the protocol is about travelling to games or recruiting, but I guess he'll find out when he gets there.

Aside from being my cousin, I love hearing about people who are okay with the grind for as long as it takes to get where they want to go. I think with his work ethic and dedication, Josh is going to be a Power-5 Offensive Coordinator 10 or 15 years from now. Keep it going lil bro!

Bonus footage: Josh vs. Buzz, 21-15-9 deadlift and squat. Summer 2013 (also you can spot Jay and Shannon there as well)

From the Vault: The Takeover Goes to Sparta

One year ago on this day Coach T and I made the trek out to Michigan State to speak at their annual Football Strength Clinic. To this day, this is probably my best non-Champions Club coaching performance, and Coach T can probably say the same for himself as well. We hit on everything we were hoping to, drew the most interest and participation from the crowd, and also acquired a good amount of follow-ups who looked for mentoring and collaboration after the clinic.

For a full review, see Reflections of a Dropout on Sparta.

Theme Workouts from the Vault

Around this time of year, the Champions Club has traditionally done two of our school-year theme workouts: Super Bowl and Valentine's day. For the second year in a row, we did not do the Super Bowl workout, but once we get the numbers back up we will be sure to bring it back. It will be difficult, however, to top the classic 2014 Super Bowl workout during the prime years for The Freaks. We had a crazy tiebreaker, a fishing battle, a chick-fight with Amy and Bubs, and the only sin Aaron Augustyn has ever committed was caught on video.

Later that month we did Anita Partyka's Valentine's Day Heartbreaker - a workout where teams are given cards to play on their opponents. Highlights from the last round can be seen below.

This one is not out of the running yet for this year. Stay tuned..

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.

From the Vault: Tim on the Rings

I think it is reasonable to say that gymnasts are, pound for pound, the strongest athletes in the world. Naturally, there are many gymnastics elements embedded in the CrossFit program. Actually owning a pair of rings was not common in the early CrossFit days, but thanks to Rogue and other suppliers they are readily available and affordable for anyone. And thank God for that because things change once athletes get on the rings. Back in 2015 I wrote a post about that after watching Tim go through Fundamentals.

Connection on Pushing Things

The article sums it up pretty well, and the only thing I would add would be that even doing a static hold in a plank position would be very beneficial for shoulder strength and stability. Push-ups and the like are a bonus. So yes, the rings can be awkward and difficult, but just remember that my main job is to expose you to things you are not good at. Doing something as simple as taking away a stable point of contact (the ground) goes a long way to challenge any movement.