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New Feature Post: Behind the Champion with Mr. Augustine

Check out the epic interview here.


Entries in fundamentals (188)

New Kid on the Block: Izzy

The Cousino connection continues with another member of their cross country team, Izzy Barone.

Izzy is a junior runner under Shannon and teammates with Avery, Emma D, and Maddison, and was also a standout on the volleyball court this fall in addition to her running. She started Fundamentals this week and has already made it through four sessions. By this pace, look forher to finish up some time next week and be a regular with the group. I'll check back in after the last day.

New Graduate: Maddison

This morning, Maddison DeBattista finshed her last day of Fundamentals with an 8:51 effort on a modified Helen with a 200m run, 12k kettlebells, and ring rows.

As I mentioned before, Maddison came in with a great background from being a part of Shannon's cross country team. As she progressed through Fundamentals, she took a little while to catch on to kipping, jump ropes, and the coordination for hollow rocks. But much to my surprise, she had a great Pose running session, and picked up on unweighting very quickly as well.

Maddison finished up her cross country season last week, so she graduated from Fundamentals just in time for a good winter (and hopefully spring) of work. Look for her to be a good addition to our high school crew!

Ghosts of Champions Club past: and endurance(ish) version of EP

New Graduate: Shaka

On Thursday, Alyssa Sciacca finished her last Fundamentals session with a good effort on Helen - modified with 200m runs, 8k kettlebells, and ring rows.

Shaka, which as you can tell I am now calling her, ended things very well in her Fundamentals sessions. Like most girls who come in, she was more of a skill-oriented athlete than a strength one. This showed on the rope climb especially, where she was able to get two or three climbs up before losing grip strength (I think a full climb may be coming sooner than she thinks, by the way).

Her best session, in my opinion, was her last one. I was going in with very low expectations on unweighting and running, but she surprised me and took on to both very quickly. Not having previous coaching in either surely helps, as well as her background in dance. Shaka will finish out the rest of the month then see if she can make the 45-minute commute to the gym work for her afterwards. I definitely hope so! Either way, congratulations on finishing Fundamentals!

Ghosts of Champions Club Past: Alexis Hilliard.

New Kid on the Block: Alyssa

Mr. Auggie sent me a text last week about a co-worker who wanted to try out CrossFit. Last Thursday that came to fruition when Alyssa Sciacca (pronounced "shaka") came through our doors for the dumbbell snatch and burpee workout. She liked it and signed up for Fundamentals shortly after.

Alyssa is a former dancer from Dakota high school and has joined up in hopes to get back into her high school shape. So far we have finished two days and the main thing we both notice that needs improvement is her midline stability. Her conditioning is not bad - especially considering her job keeps her sitting for hours on end - but her strength seems to be the limiting factor.

On the plus side, Alyssa appears to have very good coordination, which should speed up the improvement rate. Couple that with a great attitude and willingness to be coached and she seems like a great fit here. She does have a long drive to make it to the gym, but if people like Sabal, Kroll, and Danielle can make it happen I have my hopes up for Alyssa. I'll check back in after Day 8.

New Graduate: Emma D

Last night Emma DeMonaco finished her last Fundamentals session by doing a modified version of Helen - 200m run, 8k swings, and ring rows- in 6:59. She will now be joining our group!

Emma had been a pleasant surprise during Fundamentals. I saw her work out once or twice with her Cousino team that comes in here, and to be honest is didn't seem like she would be the coordinated type. But from the first day of Fundamentals it became pretty clear she had no problem picking up on the form and technique of everything. Her hollow holds/rocks and push-ups have also seen a nice improvement over the course of these 7 sessions.

The most promising thing, in my opinion, is how well she picked up on Pose running when we practiced it on Sunday. Hopefully she will be confident enough to use it for the remainder of her Cross Country season. The thing she probably needs to improve on the most is her jumping mechanics (squatting included). She has a history of ACL injuries, and we can definitely see the knee wobbles and such. Emma wants to play basketball in the winter and soccer in the spring, so you can bet the next few months of training with go a long way to helping her stay in good positions on the field or court.

Either way, we're glad to have you on board Emma. Welcome to the Champions Club!

Ghosts of Champions Club past: mixture of Old-weight room Murley and Elle Laurencelle's running

New Kid on the Block: Blake

Going into my 4th year coaching basketball at Groves, we finally got our first kid from that side of town. Blake Zalmer, a sophomore, just signed up for Fundamentals and finished his first session yesterday.

Technically, this could be counted as Blake's second session because he did a one-on-one with me in May some time if I recall correctly. I was hoping to get him on board for the Summer but a camp and other obligations kept him out. Now he's back in the swing of things with school and he's decided to jump on board with the Champions Club.

Blake played on the freshman team last year. This Summer he was playing with varsity and was one of the few non-returning players to really grasp our defensive concepts. Actually, let's face it, most of the returning players still don't understand what it means to cut off middle yet. Ugh! Anyway, Blake is one of the hardest workers we have in the entire program and so far it's been really fun to have the opportunity to coach him here at the gym. He's coordinated enough to pick up the technique, strong enough to not be too limited, and conditioned enough where we won't need to stop tha often. This could be a good one, folks. Stay tuned. I'll check back in after the last Fundamentals session.

New Kid on the Block: Emma D

On most Wednesdays, Shannon's cross country team comes in to either add in a workout into their running week, or mobilize to recover from a meet. After last week's session we picked up one of the girls to join the gym. Her name is Emma Demonaco.

Emma is a freshman at Cousino and teammate of Summer rookie Avery Maslowski. Aside from running Cross Country in the fall, Emma also plays soccer in the spring. She is coming off of two ACL surgeries suffered the past two years, and is very focussed on keeping her form good on things like jumping and squatting.

So far Emma finished two days of Fundamentals and is scheduled for another one later this week. So far she's done a good job digesting all of the technique and shows a genuine interest in learning to do things the Champions Club way. We also had a nutrition talk last night with her mom, and they both seem to have a good foundation in that area as well. Let's hope things keep going as well as the first two sessions. We'll check back in after Day 8.