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Thursday, September 29, 2011

PSKC Intro Saturday 10am

Having fun while is working is permissible even encouraged ...
I've received a few emails regarding coming to the intro, which is this Saturday at 10am. The common theme is: "I really want to try it out, but I'm just nervous...I'm out of shape, I don't know if I could handle it."

Through the blog, Facebook page, or most likely by a friend you've heard about the "crazy" workouts. Then the next step is you've checked out the photos and videos.

You're  thinking it "looks cool, but damn that looks hard". Then sometimes, self-doubt starts to creep in with thoughts of "I can't do that, I'll die. I'm not in shape enough to try it out. I don't want people to see/judge me, etc".

too busy running from the wizard to worry about what you're doing or look like
I promise you this, and everyone will back me up... you will not find a more welcoming environment then the people at PSKC. Every single person there has been in your shoes before...shy/nervous not knowing what to expect, they know what you're going through and that's why they want to see you succeed. This isn't some ultra elite private club with snooty members. We love seeing new faces. That's why we are always telling our friends/families about what we do because we experience the benefits firsthand. There are no egos here, when a 125lb girl crushes you in a tends to make you eat some humble pie.

No matter you're current physical condition or whether you never even "worked out" in your life, come down and experience it for yourself. All workouts/movements/exercises are scalable and modified according to the individual's needs.
a few months ago he would barely say a he loves to show everyone what he can do
Another thing, come now. Don't hesitate, don't think you need to get in shape first before you come down. It will end up being wasted time. The best way to "get in shape" for these style of workouts...come down and start doing them. Simple as that, forget the excuses, now is the time to forge ahead and awaken the machine that is your body. Being a stronger and more physically capable person makes you a better person...

Where else can you do this?

So we hope to see some new folks this Saturday at 10am. We'd love to have go do your homework, I can imagine all the pain faces doing this lil jewel...

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Mudder Monday Madness & Mobility Motivation

Tuesday's aftermath...

Crossfit High Voltage from Epic Junction on Vimeo.

Pretty cool right? I love this video, it's a great explanation of why we do some of the things we do. The whole reason to workout is to get better, not at just one or two things...but at everything that life may demand of you. You only get one body and one shot at life, make that body strong and capable, make that life awesome.

Stop being governed by what you cannot do...all it takes is some hard work and consistency coupled with some solid nutritional habits and you can become a very fit, healthy, strong and capable individual.

Mudder Monday Delight..
Monday came and she hit hard! Both the AM and PM crews got after this workout. Everyone knows Mondays are gonna be a long suck as those days are dedicated to prepping for the November Tough Mudder. But what I love is typically Mondays see the highest attendance throughout the week...speaks volumes about the members of PSKC.

Speaking of which, we are getting close to 3 teams who are going up to Troy Ohio, on Saturday, October 22nd to go have an awesome time at the Crossfit Back at the Ranch Competition. It's not too late to get on a team or choose to compete as an individual. I promise you it will be a kick ass time in a very unique and supportive environment. So what the hell will you be doing? A little bit of everything, lifting, climbing, swimming, carrying, running,'s a little taste.

Don't think you can do make it through all that? Go read the first paragraph of this post..."stop living life according to what you cannot do". There will be substitutions and modifications for everything. Trust me, if you sit this one out, once everyone gets back that following Monday and hear all their stories you'll be regretting it big time.

Today was not to be outdone...we worked on ring dips, renegade rows, and split squats for strength portion. Then we hit up a very potent 3 round finisher of:
14 dual KB thrusters
12 KB Snatches (w/s)
10 Burpees

Finally, I've been highlighting the importance of recovery and mobility lately at the gym. One thing I'm gonna start doing is posting some incredibly useful mobility techniques from K-Star that you guys HAVE to do at home...the one below is my all time favorite.

See you guys tomorrow, we have the 9am and 6pm option!

Monday, September 26, 2011

USMC/PSKC Part II - Photo Essay

On September 17th, PSKC had the honor of hosting close to 50 future Marine recruits for a special half day of physical training and team building exercising. Special thanks to SSG Matt Rogers and the officers and NCOs of RSS Huntington for reaching out to develop this very special relationship. Can't wait for the next installment! Also, very special thanks to the 15+ volunteers from PSKC who helped run the stations and support the future warriors of this nation.

Below are some fantastic shots taken by our very own Sara Mauk, as you will see she is very talented photographer and graphic artist. I highly recommend you look her up. Enjoy!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

One Strong Momma

Inside the belly, lil Elizabeth was doing handstand pushups
Her name is Sara Mauk, we know her as the muscle hamster. Sara attended the very first kettlebell class..EVER. This was back at in January of 2010 when we were at the old place, even before there was a PSKC. In full disclosure, Sara and I have been good friends since our moms did Jazzercise together...old school!

This past Friday Sara and her husband Chris welcomed a beautiful and strong baby girl into the world, Elizabeth Ann. Congratulations you two, she is adorable!

So we've established that the Muscle Hamster was an original ass kicker. Don't believe me? Check out the muscle hamster in forward to the 45: mark

She was one of the first females at PSKC who could regularly out lift some of the guys. She was the trail blazer and example setter for others to follow...

I still remember when she texted me and told me she was pregnant but we had to keep it a secret until she was ready to tell people. So our cover story was that she strained an abdominal muscle (clever I know). Her biggest concern was that she didn't want to stop working out. I assured she didn't have to, we would just have to modify and scale down things and that the intensity level she could ever get close to was 75%. We collaborated on some research and used as our guide.

Hitting up a 5K with the PSKC crew

Now, before you start freaking out. Sara wasn't doing burpees, box jumps, or rope climbs. Safety was our number one priority. But we wanted her to maintain her strength especially in the hips and low back region. Admittedly from Sara it was tough to reign herself back in being the competitive person that she is. Additionally, when most fitness professionals would prescribe 20 minutes of "light cardio" we wanted her to continue to hit up the functional movements. Why? From the crossfit mom's website:

Did you know?
Women who exercise during pregnancy: 
      Have reduced weight gain and fat deposition during pregnancy 
      Have fewer pregnancy discomforts 
      Report a more rapid physical and emotional recovery from delivery 
      Tend to have easier, shorter and less complicated labors 
      Have less need for pain relief during labor 
      Have more stamina during labor 
      Increase their aerobic capacity 
      Decrease their susceptibility to illness 
      Increase their energy level
Babies of exercising moms: 
      Have significantly lower heart rates than babies of non-exercising moms 
      Are better able to cope with the stress of birth 
      Have a greater ability to adapt to life outside the uterus 
      Are more healthy at birth 
      Are leaner at birth and tend to stay lean as they grow 
      Sleep through the night sooner 
      Are better able to self-calm 
      Score higher on tests of general intelligence and oral language skills 
      Have decreased risks of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases later in life 

As you can see, just because you're pregnant doesn't mean you have to give up working out. It will actually make your pregnancy/deliver easier on you. Plus, (one of Sara's biggest concerns) is that it will limit the amount of time post-pregnancy to get back to full muscle hamster strength. And watch out, 2012 is the year of the Muscle Hamster!

It's one thing to read about how exercising will make the pregnancy/delivery easier on the mom and baby. It's another to experience it first hand. Here's a text I received from the Muscle Hamster after she delivered the lil hamster:

"Kettlebell was the topic of discussion while I was pushing. Someone had shown my doc some of the pics from the gym. Thanks for letting me continue my regimen. My labor was 10 times easier this time!! Piece of cake!" 

Congrats you two from the whole PSKC family! Can't wait until she's climbing and swinging on the rings just like her big sister..

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Check Out the Crossfit Games Wednesday 9pm on ESPN2

Mudder Monday was another bruiser...the workout was 5 rounds of:
15 Deadlifts 185/135
15 Knees to Elbows
15 Burpees
Stoplight Run

Tonight we took some time to teach and refine one of the best full body exercises out there, the overhead squat:

Mama G and Mama Mess on the overhead squats

We also added some strength/skill work with the ring dip. After than it was time for a quick and dirty finisher of: 21-15-9 overhead kb swings & box jumps.

After class tomorrow if you guys don't have anything going on I highly suggest you tune to ESPN2 at 9pm on Wednesday and check out the second installment of the Crossfit Games. Take a look at some of the fittest on the planet going on at it, you will be inspired at their ability, effort, and intensity. And it's very cool to see other people going through what you guys go through on a daily basis! All your trainers hold various certifications, first and foremost we are all Crossfit Level 1 trainers, and obviously believe heavily in this methodology. Although we started out as a pure kettlebell gym, we are excited to be able to offer more barbell and Crossfit programming. Although currently we are not a Crossfit affiliate, that is our goal in the future as soon as we feel we can offer you guys all the necessary equipment and associated overhead. So stay tuned!

Speaking of competitions, the Back at the Ranch competition is fast approaching and there's been a lot of buzz at the gym about this. Some of the talk has revolved around "can I do it" which I emphatically say "HELLS YEAH DUDE". I've been fortunate enough to participate in some of these competitions and I'm always happy I did. It's not so much about competing against other teams, but it's about testing yourself and being proud you did so. I've also not competed in some events and have been stung by the feeling of regret for not doing so. So sign up, get a team together or compete as an will have a blast.

Finally, Josh Bunch of Practice Crossfit, who is also the individual organizing the Back at the Ranch competition posted something recently that I really found interesting and insightful...are you appreciating every breath life gives you??? Read Josh's post below:

No matter how deep the deep end is, breathing is sometimes impossible. Even if that deep end is no bigger than a puddle. Even if your ocean is no bigger than a kiddie pool.

When we feel like we are drowning we often make the mistake of gasping for that life saving breath to early. We claw and grab wildly at all those around us hoping to get out of the water, never caring weather we pull them into the danger with us. All the time forgetting; better to die alone that bring along the innocent.

While writhing in our puddle we often forget to just rollover and take a breath. We often remain immediately focused on the problem of water below, instead of the savior or air above.

If you ask most humans what death they fear worst, drowning is almost always atop the list. We fear suffocation of life more than anything. We fear missing our most taken for granted action...breathing.

Its when we finally appreciate every breath for the life giving ability it has. When we start appreciating every breath our loved ones take that breathing looks alot more like a gift, than a function.

Water doesn't equal drowning. Drowning is any time we feel suffocated by the events of the day. The events we had control over and chose our way, not the right way. Its when we realize we have taken for granted every good thing until it removes its sweet breath from us. When we no longer feel the warm air from which we love.

If the greatest sin in life is not living up to ones potential, then taking for granted that which we hold dear is the second.Its taking our health for granted, our kids, our friends, our ocean of gifts. Do this long enough and that ocean feels smaller everyday. Drain the water for too long and one may just try suicide by puddle.

We are the ones who choose to make our ocean of gifts into a meager puddle. To drown out all sensibility around us with our selfishness until everything is gone, until everything is taken. When more and more people leave our pool, the watter becomes more shallow, we become more shallow.

Our ocean is made up of minuscule rain drops over the course of our lives. The things we love add to that water everyday. The things that leave or are removed can either promote us to gather more rain and build our ocean back, or we can lose it all and end up with a puddle, drowning, praying for mercy. And when you can't breath death becomes just as freeing as life.

If we drown in the ocean, we drown surrounded by the rain drops of everything we tried to create. We drown as legend. We drown as potential realized. If we drown in a puddle, we go alone with nothing but our selfishness to blame.

If your letting puddles get the best of you, start looking up for the rain, and collecting every drop like its your last. Never taking even the most trivial of matters for granted. Once its gone, you never get it back. There are only so may rainstorms we will be blessed with, but if we selfishly squander them all our reservoir may be no more than a stream big enough to take our breath away forever.