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Welcome to the Champions Club Summer 2018!

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

Entries in Murley's flock of baby deer (33)

New Kids on the Block: 10 am session

Well, this took an entire Summer to develop, but starting about 2 weeks ago we finally had a consistent 10 am crew.

Avery Maslowski

As many of you know, Avery joined us in the winter. She had decent attendance, but nothing like she has displayed so far this fall. She will sometimes jump around to the 11 am or evening session if she can't make 10 am, but that doesn't stop her from leading the way for the rookie group - both in good form and workout intensity. We might have a good one on our hands here folks! Avery seems to be cut from the Katie Bromm mold - long legs, coordination pending, talking rarely.

Emily Gurney

Emily (pictured on the right) was part of the initial kids crew in the winter of 2016 - along with Josh Ellsworth. She came here through her mom - a P.E. teacher in Warren Consolidated who attended one of Murley's clinics. Emily stopped coming in for a little over a year, but has picked things back up this Summer. Still, her attendance might be the most inconsistent out of the crew so hopefully we can see that increase like it has the past two weeks. This incoming 10th grader has some upside as a runner for sure. Emily seems to be a soccer-first version of Maria, matching sass-for-sass the coaching efforts of myself or Murley.

Mrs. Dawkins

Mrs. Dawkins has been a very important addition to the Champions Club rookie session this Summer, and one of my favorite people to coach at the moment. She is completely open and honest with her limitations of fitness, and that, I think, has been the main part in her crazy improvement over the past two months. Her running and conditioning have seen the most improvement in my opinion, as welll as her midline control. Plus, as you are about to read below, she also works out in the same session as two of her kids. Yet, I never catch a hint of the over-protective helicopter parent we have all seen in one way or another. This is Mrs. Anderson minus the squat mobility.

Isaac Dawkins

Isaac is good friends with Nolan (more on that below) and is an incoming 7th grader, who's primary sport is football. Isaac is probably the most-improved mover out of the group; we have seen him show much more control in his squat, hollow hold, and jump in recent weeks. He even is progressing on handstands quite will; push-ups may be a longer story. For that reason, Isaac reminds me most of Ricky Carey.

Sophia Dawkins

Sophia (pictured above with Emily Gurney) is Isaac's twin sister, and obviously also going into 7th grade. Her main sport is volleyball, and she also had a good gymnastics background growing up. This Summer she has been working around a lingering Achilles thing she tweaked back in the spring. Slowly but surely it seems to be getting better with the constant attention to mobility and position. Think of Anita Partyka, but a little more polite.

Nolan Wesner

If the last name sounds familiar, then you are on track. Nolan is Maddy's younger brother, and also happens to be in the same grade as Isaac and Sophia. Originally, Mrs. Wesner recommended Mrs. Dawkins and her kids to join the gym at the 10 am session, but did not include Nolan out of fear that he would overcome his sister in athleticism... or possibly because he didn't have a ride. However, once Mrs. Dawkins volunteered to drive the youngest Wesner, we added another member to the 10 am session. Nolan, another football/basketball player, is pretty tall for his grade, so the coordination is coming along similar to Isaac's. But still, he reminds me a little of Frankie Lama.

Andre Saffar

On a random day in late-July, Crawford pulls into the parking lot the usual hour and change early to his 11 am session. Only this time he was accompanied by one of his Cross Country teammates also fresh out of practice. Andre tried out a workout, liked it, and signed up the next day. By pure percentage, Andre probably has the best attendance. If that keeps up, look for good things coming from this incoming sophomore. He's a pretty close representation of Kenny Jensen, but a little bit faster.

Josh Howey

Josh is the older brother of Samantha, one of the standouts in the Babies session. He is going into 8th grade and he cannot decide between wraastling and football as his favorite sports. Josh has the best mobility out of anyone in the group and is now working on the movement control to go with it. And man, he is picking up fast. Cleans, push-ups, handstands, and hollow holds look pretty good considering his 2+ weeks with us; the main thing he has to correct is the knees-forward fault. Definitely reminds me of a shorter version of Conor.

Mrs. Howey

On Josh's first day with our 10 am session, his mother was the one to drop him off. Only, she didn't necessarily drop him off so much as venture in through the garage doors with him. She wasn't a stranger, though, seeing as she often brought Samantha to the Babies. Anyway, I noticed she was dressed in attire that could be reasonably passed for workout clothes, so I invited her in. One hour later, we had our second mommy for the rookie session. So far, the coordination part of the movements is the most challenging for her, but the mobility is ready once the motor control catches up. If anyone remembers Angie Kadawaki from the early days of this gym, this might be her in disguise.

Mrs. Bass

And last but not least, back for the second Summer in a row is Champions Club fan-favorite Mrs. Bass; badass P.E. teacher at Warren Mott. Unfortunately she could not convince her boys to return for another Summer, but we are still glad to have this one on board. Honestly, Mrs. Bass is one of the most inspirational people I coach. It is not often that P.E. teachers and coaches practice what they preech; Mrs. Bass is a glaring exception. If we could get her here even more consistently, it would make me a much happier Chris. Definitely some Mrs. Kroll in this one for sure.

New Graduate: Sophia

This morning we had a small 10 am session and were therefore able to fine-tune some coaching points on movements we don't always get to. One of those is the rope climb, and incoming 7th grader Sophia Dawkins got her first complete one on her first attempt. Check it out.

Keep up the good work kiddo! Be on the lookout for the 10 am intro post soon.

Athlete of the Week: Avery

We've put in a ton of great work so far this Summer, and it's still only halfway in the books! Our Athlete of the Week this time around is rookie Avery Maslowski.

Our 10 am rookie session is still developing, and I think it might finally come to fruition in late July/early August. But the one constant has been Avery. And the only thing more consistent than her attendance is her improvement in coordination. Since she came back after soccer season, it seems like her body awareness and strength is getting better by the minute. Just yesterday she managed to control her position on slow overhead squats as well as anyone, and coming from where she was in January, I was very impressed.

Backtrack to Thursday and her jump ropes were fluid; Tuesday her box jumps stayed feet together and back flat on deadlifts; and even today she beat Jennifer on a few hill sprints.

Avery could fall in the Katie Bromm complete athletic overhaul category by the time Summer is over, and I am just thankful I get a front row seat to watch it. I think I even heard her talk on Friday, but I could be wrong.

Either way, great job Avery and keep the momentum going for the rest of Summer!

Beast Mode: The Kenny and Carter Show

There were about two people I was expecting to do well on Tuesday's max effort Overhead squats. Carter the Blob and 11 am rookie Kenny Jensen were not the two people I had in mind. But much to my surprise, they both showcased great form and good enough mobility to move up to 60 lbs. on their final set. Here's how it looked.

Athlete of the Week: Matt Hickey

For the final time for the Summer 2016, the Athlete of the Week goes to 11 am goofball Matt Hickey.

The scrawniest of all the Summer rookies (which is saying a lot) had himself a great week of training in the midst of a full Cross Country schedule. In his fist time doing the sport, Matt got off to a good start this year by finishing in 22:54 and right behind Crawford (now a Varsity runner) in Mott's meet at Grosse Pointe North.

In the gym, his training has been as consistent as id had been all Summer, but I am really beginning to see consistent improvements in his form. For instance, on Monday they did a mini WOD with foam burpees and kipping pull-ups. Not only did Matt get the highest round total, but he managed to do it without losing the foam AND going no-band on pull-ups. On Thursday I tested him on the pull-ups again and he did 10+ rounds of a modified Cindy in 10 minutes without a band again. Both his kipping rhythm and pulling strength are coming along.

Another noticeable change is Hickey's squat form. Slowly but surely he is becoming more stable in the bottom position and his knees are staying still. His heavy (for him) Goblet Squats on today's Harry Potter workout were a good example of that - as well as his high speed squats on Thursday.

Believe it or not, Matt has been a little more mellow this week than he usually is. Whether that's a result from this nagging ear infection, or the realization that school is right around the corner remains to be seen. All I can say is Matt would be my vote for the classic Mikey Peterson M.I.L.F. award (Most Improved Limb Function). He's had a great Summer with us and hopefully this can keep up during Cross Country season and the rest of the school year.

Just remember, there is another Matt we all know who was the same size as Hickey at that age, and he's now a professional marathon runner. I'm not necessarily saying Hicks is willing to commit to a lifetime of mileage, but I can bet there will be some good things coming for this one in the future if he keeps up the work.

Leader of the New School: Murley Burly

Through a string of connections and interviews, Champions Club OG and coach Nicole Murley is now a full-time science teacher at Riverview Gabriel Richard High School.

Freshman Orientation is today, and tomorrow they begin the regular class schedule. She will be teaching two chemistry classes, two biology classes, and forensics. What's even more impressive is she got the job despite not even being finished with school yet.

This fall will prove to be very hectic for Murley. On top of her 7am - 3pm teaching gig every day, she is also taking a full courseload at Madonna. And if that wasn't enough, she has not given up running Cross Country - seeing as this is her final year of eligibility. As you can imagine, this schedule will be taking up a majority of her time and she most likely won't be available to coach at the gym this fall. Hopefully she managed to borrow Hermione's Time Turner because I can't imagine someone doing this many things at once. But if anyone can do it, it's Murley.

Good luck this semester! We have quite a few future teachers and educators in our ranks and they will no-doubt be following your lead. I am very proud of you and I'm sure I can speak for everyone else in saying the same thing. 

Athlete of the Week: Kenny

We are winding down on the Summer days, and the first Athlete of the Week for August is 11 am rookie Kenny Jensen.

Kenny's been having himself a very steady Summer with the 11 am session. In an hour of chaos, Pokemon GO! hunting, and questionalble taste of jokes, Kenny proves to provide a sense of chill that helps level out the session. But he's also churning out Beast Modes nearly every day.

On Monday, he finished second to Josh by 2 seconds on their modified Nancy and did well with his wall-blocked Overhead squats. On Tuesday Kenny got stuck with the heavy dumbbells on the Front squat, push-up, burpee triplet and still finished with the top time. Thursday's version of Elizabeth with hang cleans and ring holds saw Kenny's form look good enough to use a bar instead of dumbbell and rings instead of the parallel bars. And while I was not there to see him there on Friday, reports back on his technique were pretty good.

Finally, him and Carter took home the victory in today's team workout.

Like I said, Kenny has been having a great Summer and is one of the easiest kids to coach in the gym. He starts cross country next week, so hopefully he will see an improvement in his running and still find time to make it to the gym consistently.

Keep up the work kiddo!