Share your CrossFit Prototype experience and fitness journey I became a member of CFP when the merger with SmallTown took place. When I look back, I am amazed at how fast I fit in, whether it was getting to know Mike and Brian Z., to the tight-knit group from 7:30 (RIP), or working out with people I just met for the Saturday morning partner WODS. I got hooked once I started going to Saturday mornings frequently and got to meet everyone. My fitness journey has been a long story. I have played sports all of my life and first got into weight lifting going into my freshman year of high school to play football. I was a three-sport athlete in high school and was lucky enough to play football in college. After college, I enjoyed running and I competed in boxing and Brazilian jiu-jitsu. I first got introduced to CrossFit a couple of years after getting out of college. What makes Crossfit unique is the intensity of the workouts. It brings back great memories I have working out in the weight room with my teammates in college.
What is your favorite part about being at CFP? The answer is easy…..the community. It doesn’t matter what time of the day you come in because you know there is a great coach(s) running the class plus a great group of people to work out with. I particularly enjoy getting the chance to work out with someone during the partner workouts. I also can’t thank CFP enough for helping me get through this difficult time. The 5:30 Zoom classes have been the best part of my day.
What are your hobbies and activities? As a high school teacher and three-sport coach, I am constantly around sports. I picked up golf a few years ago with my friends and also enjoy reading, traveling, and watching tv shows and documentaries.
How has (if it has) CFP helped you outside the gym (in sports etc)? CFP has been essential for my physical and mental wellness. Using what I learned at CFP has helped me maintain a high energy level and stay disciplined while going through a busy schedule.
What are you continuing fitness goals to this point? My goal is to stay consistent with my participation in the gym. I feel that is the first part of the battle before improving specific aspects of fitness.
What is your favorite quote? I’m not really much of a quote guy, but I am known for obscure tv shows and movie quotes. “We got no food, we got no jobs, our pets’ HEADS ARE FALLING OFF!” – Dumb and Dumber
Share your CrossFit Prototype experience and fitness journey A few years ago, I would drive by CFP every day. I was so curious about what was happening there, but very intimidated to walk in. One day, after a manicure next door, I worked up the courage to walk in. Mike greeted me as warmly as he continues to do to this day. Before I knew it, I was starting Virtuosity and haven’t looked back since. I started with 8am classes then transitioned to evening classes and private training with Jon when I went back to work full time last summer. I also had a lot of fun doing Caitlyn’s Endurance program and am excited to start Endure with Leah!
What is your favorite part about being at CFP? The community is a huge part (which I know everyone says – but it’s true!) CFP has also been a bright spot during the isolation of this pandemic. At first, I was simply excited to finally try a Thrive class, but now the Zoom classes and private training have become part of my “new normal” routine. More than ever I have realized what an important part of my life CFP has become. I also look forward to the different plank ideas that Jon comes up with for me. Who else could make me do planks with a 35 lb. plate on my back? And now that we can’t meet in the gym in-person, Jon has come up with one-handed planks!
What are your hobbies and activities? In addition to CFP, I enjoy running outdoors. I started running in 2011 and have run many 5/10ks, half marathons, and even the Boston Marathon (when it was 95 degrees!) I also enjoy nature, travel, reading and photography, and as of last month, jigsaw puzzles and Netflix. My family is also very important, and I guess they are a “hobby.” My son is a junior in high school and a trombonist with the Boston Youth Symphony, and my daughter just wrapped up a gap year as a figure skater performing with Disney on Ice. She will attend WPI this fall. They, along with our dog, keep my husband and I very busy!
How has (if it has) CFP helped you outside the gym (in sports etc.)? It has helped to keep me strong and in shape for running races. I also think in general CFP has helped me stay positive and focused and to prioritize staying active.
What are you continuing fitness goals to this point? In the long term, to try to beat the aging process! In the short term, to continue running and to work my way up to heavier weights. I am presently training to run the Mt. Washington Road Race (their motto is “There’s Only One Hill” – however it’s 7.6 steep miles to the summit). I am also working on improving my nutrition with Leah.
What is your favorite quote? I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination.
Share your CrossFit Prototype experience and fitness journey
I started CrossFit in June 2019 (8 months)
What is your favorite part about being at CFP? My favorite part of CFP is the positive encouragement from all the Coaches. My class time coaches are Brian and Leah. You guys are the Best!
What are your hobbies and activities? Hobbies are being the best mom, daughter, wife, sibling, aunt, employee, etc… I can be.
How has (if it has) CFP helped you outside the gym (in sports etc)? CFP has stepped up my confidence and hope that everything is going to be ok. When you battle an illness or a life changing diagnosis with one of your kids you face a ton of self doubt. CFP has given me back the control I needed and the power to say there isn’t anything I can’t do. It just takes hard work!
What are you continuing fitness goals to this point? I want people to look at me and say “wow she really takes care of herself” As odd as that may be to some, it’s truly important to me. I’ve always taken care of everyone else and forgotten me, but I have realized that by taking care of one’s self, you are in fact taking care of everyone around you that depend on you. Reducing body fat and increasing my energy/endurance would be a great goal. I’ll have to learn how to change my goal to number values so it’s measurable.
What is your favorite quote? “Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.”
Share your CrossFit Prototype experience and fitness journey I joined CFP about three years ago because my mom (Carter) and friend (Abby) did crossfit. I joined and loved the community aspect. I then transitioned to doing olympic weightlifting with Joe about two years ago and have fell in love with lifting. Since then I have loved improving as a lifter and making incredible friends!
What is your favorite part about being at CFP? I love the community and the people here. It helps motivate me to keep coming and I always have a great time when I am here. The coaches are also so dedicated and invested in your success which is incredible.
What are your hobbies and activities? I obviously love weightlifting but I enjoy lots of other things. I enjoy playing soccer and doing just about anything with my friends.
How has (if it has) CFP helped you outside the gym (in sports etc)? CFP has helped me become a stronger and more confident person. Through weightlifting I have become stronger both mentally and physically.
What are you continuing fitness goals to this point? At this point I am working really hard to get strong enough to compete at the national level as a junior. This is gonna take a lot of hard work and dedication but I’m ready to put in the work!
What is your favorite quote? I am not sure if I have a favorite quote but I like this one, “you are braver than you believe… and stronger than you appear… and smarter than you think” — Winnie the Pooh. I like this one because I find that I often underestimate myself and need the reminder to believe in myself.
Share your CrossFit Prototype experience and fitness journey Years ago I was a collegiate (and many years beyond) soccer player. I also ran a lot and completed a couple of marathons. All that seemed to slow to a near stop as my life got busier and busier with a young family and a crazy job as a globe-trotting consultant. Something had to give. I joined a local gym and started to learn a little about weight lifting (something I had never done before)…nothing technical; certainly no Olympic lifts, but it got me off the couch. Along the way, many around me were getting on the Crossfit train. I resisted. I had the impression that it was a little cult-like and I was happy quietly lifting on my own. A turning point occurred when my wife, Lillian Rich, started working out with Mike. She raved about the way he customized workouts for her, pushed (but didn’t break) her and otherwise created a welcome environment for her to enjoy fitness. Through the vagaries of a CFP Holiday Party raffle (I attended as a guest of Lillian), I ended up with a few free introductory personal training sessions with Mike. I reluctantly took a sip of the Koolaid. Mike was gentle at first. …a few bench presses, a couple of pullups… piece of cake. Then he introduced me to the Assault Bike. “a few rounds of 5 calories, you say, Mike?” At the end of that toy workout, I was gasping for air. I’ve come a long way from that! Even during those one-on-one training sessions with Mike, I was constantly asking about what the class was doing. He could tell I really wanted to be part of that community and he ultimately transitioned me to GenPop. I was all in.
What is your favorite part about being at CFP? What I love most about CFP is the community. Perhaps that is a hackneyed thing to observe in this blog but it is true for me, nonetheless. I love the vibe the gym exudes when you show up for a Murph; the energy around a Friday during the Open; even the anticipation of BZ hollering: “3…2…1…GO!” on a regular weekday at 3:30. I’ve grown to especially value the Partner events on Saturday mornings (even if it is way too early) when I chase around (but never catch) my friend and workout partner, Colin Lake. I also have to point out here how impressed I am with the flexibility of the coaches. I am currently nursing a chronic injury to my elbow (ah, youth is wasted on the young). As a result, right now I have to fairly dramatically modify many of the movements. Now, I am not talking here about substituting a jumping pull up for a regular pullup, rather I am referring to throwing out the pullup altogether and doing a vested air squat (or the like). To a person, each coach has rolled with my limitations and helped me design something that leaves me properly sweaty and fully worked out. Thank you, Gang!
What are your hobbies and activities?
I love to play golf (you wouldn’t really know that watching me play but I keep at it anyway). I’ve really enjoyed getting to be part of the CFP golfing crew and, even though we don’t hold a candle to the travel antics of the Ladies of 5am, we are doing our best to compete. While I’m a terrible golfer, I am much better with the tiller of a sailboat or the wheel of power boat in Boston Harbor and waters beyond. I’m trying to get out there as much as possible. Also, as I have eased into retirement from Corporate America, I have mostly taken on the role of chef for the family.
How has (if it has) CFP helped you outside the gym (in sports etc)? General life is better when you have the confidence of fitness. Chasing the kids, moving furniture (“you want me to move that couch, again??”), toting groceries, shoveling snow…the list is endless.
What are you continuing fitness goals to this point?
I would really like to improve my flexibility. I feel this would translate into better performance all over the shop. John Collette recently asked me after a back squat workout, “How’d you do?”. I told him that I wasn’t near my PR and that I was disappointed in my performance. As an afterthought I added, “but, I think my squat might be getting a little deeper…” John’s face brightened. He essentially told me to shut up about the weight and revel in the long term benefits of that improved flexibility. Astute, indeed.
What is your favorite quote?
A few months back we had a CFP goal of getting 10K (I think) calories on the Assault Bike. As the month wore on, we were woefully short of reaching the goal. I kept doing the math, noting with increasing concern that there was NO WAY we could catch up. Near the end of the month the crew rallied; on the last Sunday morning there was a APB issued by G on Facebook and some diehards assembled. Goal achieved. Mike Collette: “if we really put our minds around something, the CFP Community can do anything!” I’m going with that.
This is a post that I could go on for days talking and get all sciencey/fancy on some points but I’m going to keep it simple. If you want some science, just ask me or one of our coaches next time you see us : ) The big thing here it to talk to you all about the “Why” behind what we do from the exercise component but also our deeper CrossFit Prototype community “why”. As you all know, every workout you do at CFP is different. There are days when we “retest” certain movements or workouts and the goal for these days is to MEASURE your progress vs. where you were previously. For example, re-testing a particular lift (1RM Back Squat for example) or re-testing a particular benchmark WOD (“Fran”, “Cindy”, “Murph”, “The Human Torch Was Denied A Bank Loan”… that’s a long one…) gives you an indication of progress. However, if you’re not always aware of the “Why” behind what we do, then some days you may be thinking “Hmm, what’s the point of doing this?” Guess what! We love answering that question, so don’t hesitate to ask if the dots haven’t been connected for you (that’s on us and we will do a better job!). So, I wanted to take a few minutes of your time to give you an explanation to the “Why” behind what we do.
Why we do CrossFit:
CrossFit allows you to be a well-rounded athlete (yes, I said athlete because when you do CrossFit you’re an athlete!). With that being said, there is absolutely nothing wrong with focusing on particular elements (getting stronger by doing the Strength Class as an example) or if you’re dedicated to a particular form of exercise to enhance your sport (sports specific conditioning or training for Marathon runners for example) if that’s your goal. The bigger thing here is when you’re looking to improve your general fitness (decrease blood pressure, lower cholesterol, lose body fat, be able to play with your kids) and make it part of your lifestyle, we believe CrossFit gives you the best bang for your buck. We help you enhance your flexibility, strength, endurance, power, balance, coordination, etc… When you train very specific elements ONLY (like just running for example) you’re only enhancing those specific parts of your fitness (stamina and cardiovascular endurance as an example here). Being well rounded gives you the ability to do all the things in life that require variability (jumping, hiking, manual labor). Think of it as being superhuman generalists… you’re working on doing well at EVERYTHING!
Why we perform the major Barbell Lifts:
Exercises like the Snatch, Clean and Jerk, Deadlift, Back and Front Squat as a few examples, help get you stronger and become more powerful. The bottom line with these movements is that they build lean body mass and require a TON of energy in order to perform them. Yes… lifting heavy stuff requires a lot of energy. That energy is in the form of calories. Lifting heavy things not only requires a lot of metabolic demand (calorie burn), it builds lean muscle mass which means your body burns more calories when it’s resting. And no… for the ladies out there thinking “I don’t want to get too bulky”… you won’t. If your energy in (food) aligns with your output (exercise and living), you will be fine. If you overeat while building lean body mass then you can gain weight, but that’s a better conversation for our Head Nutrition Coach, Jon. So these movements get you stronger, they build lean body mass, they require a lot of energy to perform and guess what… they’re fun to do because they’re hard! When you get the movement down and can see your numbers increase it’s an AMAZING feeling! It’s always great to see the progress and pay off of hard work!
Why we perform Skill work:
Days like today (Wednesday 4/17/19) we have programmed a 3 position snatch, some core accessory work paired with it on the minute. Additionally, we have a gymnastics GOAT WOD, which means you get to choose a gymnastics movement (pull up, toe to bar, handstand hold, etc) that you get to practice which is also paired with some more accessory work. So, why are we doing this? Well, skill work (or practice) will translate to better efficiency in your workouts over time. You have heard the saying “practice makes perfect”, the reality is, “perfect practice makes perfect”. In order to get better at a skill, we need to practice it when our heart rates aren’t through the roof. So an EMOM is a perfect opportunity to get your HR up a little bit, but allow you to maintain your focus and on acquiring the skill. Getting better at movements like double unders, pull-ups or the snatch, will allow you to get more out of your workout. Think of it like this, the amount of energy it takes to do a double under vs. a single under is significantly greater. You’ll feel a lot more tired doing 50 unbroken double unders than you would be doing 50 unbroken single unders because you’re moving the rope under your twice on one jump and you’re jumping a little higher… so it makes sense that if you get this skill down, the intensity of your workouts will increase! This demand will require you to burn more calories and for those out there looking to lose weight and increase lean body mass, this is an EASY example of why we encourage you to practice!
Why we do so much accessory work:
The accessory work that is sometimes blended into your WOD is tremendously beneficial. These exercises are smaller/single joint strength exercises that complement the major strength lifts we do. Approximately 50-60 percent of the strength work we incorporate into our program are accessory exercises following the conditioning piece. We sometimes call these “Special Exercises”. The band tension work (specifically) helps increase end range of motion strength or “lockout” and can help increase tendon strength to prevent strain or injury. Additionally, they are always complimentary to what we are doing in the main block of your workout (strength or metcon) whether hitting similar muscle groups or antagonist muscle groups (think like the opposite side).
Why we encourage you to be part of the community:
At the end of the day, if you’re a member here at Prototype you’re part of the #CFPFamily and we should all be here for each other and to support one another. From participating in our Prototype Open, social events, competitions, scavenger hunt and even waiting to put your stuff away until everyone finishes the workout, these are things that we encourage you to do and always will. Being a member at CFP is different (as you all should know) than your typical gym. You’re all in here busting your butt together, building life long relationships and getting outside your comfort zones continuously. Events we host at the gym and outside of the gym allow you to get to know each other and build those relationships. In addition, the support from the community adds another layer of accountability. I’m sure all of you reading this have gotten a message from one of your coaches or CFP team members at some point if you were missing from the gym for a while. Maybe you even got a note from another CFP member who you workout with “Hey (insert name), where have you been?” What other gym does that? Whether you’re an introvert or an extrovert, when you’re at CFP you’re around like-minded people. The people in this community only want to help you, inside and outside of the gym! I hope this connects some of the dots for those out there that have those questions and as I said, we are always happy to answer them because there is always a why behind what we do. #KeepMovingForward -Mike
By Joe Black There comes a time in your CrossFit journey when you begin to realize that if you want to step your fitness up to the next level, it is going to require focusing on areas where you may be deficient. Since we touch upon so many different areas of fitness inside (and outside) the walls of CFP, it can be overwhelming figuring out where to place your focus and which personal fitness trainer to work with. Let’s begin this discussion by re-thinking the way we view these deficiencies. The word “weakness” has a negative connotation to it. Re-frame your thoughts about weaknesses. From this point forward, view a “weakness” as an “area of opportunity.” This simple re-framing goes a long way. Weakness implies something that is fixed or static, which makes overcoming it that much harder. It is a state that lacks something, namely, a strength. It points to shortcomings. We don’t need that negativity! Area of opportunity has a much more positive connotation. Opportunities are sets of circumstances that you can create. You have control over these circumstances and, by taking control, you can make progress. So how do we know which areas of opportunity we should focus on and prioritize? In the context of a CrossFit fitness gym, there are two great ways to approach this.
The CrossFit HQ Way
CrossFit identifies ten general physical skills that determine one’s fitness level:
You can look at this list and determine which of these are areas of opportunity for you and you fitness trainer to work on. Improvements in endurance, stamina, strength, and flexibility come about through training. These are elements of fitness that will improve with consistency. The more consistent you are with your training, the more likely these will improve. Improvements in coordination, agility, balance, and accuracy come about through practice. The more you practice these elements, the more likely you will develop the neural adaptations to make improvements. Improvements in power and speed come about through a combination of training and practice. They require consistent training and practice. From here, you can further break down your areas of opportunity based on CrossFit’s “Theoretical Hierarchy of Development,” which reflects foundational dependence, skill and time ordering of development. Your personal CrossFit journey does not necessarily need to follow this order (ideally, you are working on many of these things all at once), but it is surprising how deficiencies at the lower levels can lead to issues at the above levels.
Nutrition is a very important component of fitness. It is your foundation. There is a saying that goes “you can’t out-train a poor diet.” Properly fueling your body will set you up for success and lead to continued development. If your nutrition needs to improve, start there. CFP has a great nutrition program to help you out! Metabolic conditioning development will be your next focus. You want to have cardiovascular sufficiency. Improvements can be made in endurance, stamina, strength, flexibility, power, and speed. You have three metabolic pathways that provide your muscles with energy: phosphagen, glycolytic and oxidative. Phosphagen and glycolytic pathways are used for anaerobic activities. Phosphagen pathways kick in when activities are short in duration (10 seconds or less) but require a great deal of power. Think a 100-meter sprint or a heavy 1 rep max back squat. Glycolytic pathways are used when activities range from 30 seconds to 2 minutes and also require high power. Think Grace, Fran or a Tabata workout. Oxidative pathways are used for aerobic activities. These activities require your body to produce energy over an extended period of time and require less power. These are your longer, less intense workouts, like Murph. Make sure that you continue to develop your metabolic conditioning and get in a balance of workouts throughout the week that develop these pathways. Gymnastics follows next. The aim of gymnastics is body control. Strength, flexibility, coordination, balance, agility and accuracy can all be developed here. Gymnastics movements include: pull-ups, push-ups, dips, rope climbs, muscle-ups, wall-walks, handstands, handstand walks, handstand holds, hollow-holds, L-sits and more. If there are areas of opportunity here, focus on these next as the general physical fitness skills you can build from these movements are incredibly beneficial. Weightlifting follows gymnastics. Weightlifting focus on external object control (and let’s be honest, is easily the most appealing part of CrossFit in this writer’s opinion 🙂 ). Weightlifting develops strength, speed, power, flexibility, coordination, agility, accuracy, and balance. Proficiency in the snatch and clean and jerk will have tremendous carry over to your overall fitness and are incredible movements to watch when done correctly. Weightlifting is very technical and requires a lot of practice and patience, so there are always areas of opportunity here. Sport is at the peak of the pyramid because it is the application of everything below it in a competition atmosphere. Sports are more varied and have less predictable movements than a class you might get at our fitness gym. It allows you to use a combination of the 10 general physical skills all at once. Competition can be extremely beneficial in identifying areas of opportunity. Every year, after the CrossFit Open, everyone realizes the area of opportunity they need to focus on in order to improve their performance next year. Use sport for fun and as a test to determine the areas of opportunity further down the pyramid. By understanding the 10 general physical fitness skills and the hierarchy of development, you can begin to get a sense of where your area of opportunities lie and take action to make improvements. This approach can seem a bit overwhelming because of the lack of a clear set of steps that you can follow. Luckily, CrossFit Prototype has a great way to help you prioritize your areas of opportunity and improve your fitness.
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CrossFit Prototype has a unique system to help you achieve your fitness goals and work on areas of opportunity without having to put so much thought into it: the CFP Virtuosity Program. This program is truly one-of-a-kind. It takes its name from an article written by the founder of CrossFit, Greg Glassman, in which he discusses the importance of virtuosity, defined as “doing the common uncommonly well.” Movements, exercises and workout are arranged in levels, with each level represented by a band, similar to the belt system in martial arts. By completing the prescribed numbers at each band level, you are rewarded for your progress by moving onto the next band. The CFP Virtuosity Program combines the 10 general physical skills and three of the major components of the hierarchy of development into one easy to follow plan for continued success. Getting started is easy:
Fill in your numbers at each band level to check to see what band you are on. If you have questions, talk to a fitness instructor.
Review those areas of opportunity to focus on to improve your fitness.
Within the CFP Virtuosity Program itself, you can figure out the best way to approach areas of opportunity:
Running, rowing, Assault Bike and jump rope numbers not up to par? Work on your metabolic conditioning!
Pull-ups, push-ups, toes to bar and muscles-ups not up to snuff? Work on your gymnastics!
Squats, Olympic Lifts or deadlifts lacking? Work on your lifting!
If you have one or more areas of opportunity, you can refer to the hierarchy of development by focusing on conditioning, then gymnastics, then lifting. The great thing is that each of these elements will provide carry over into the other elements. A rising tide lifts all ships!
Remember, we cannot stress this enough: take action! An inch of action will bring you closer to your goals than a mile of intention. Pick one area of opportunity to work on – today! If you would like help with deciding which area of opportunity you would like to work on, reach out to one of your fitness coaches. Every one of our physcial trainers is happy to help! [gravityform id=”3″ title=”true” description=”true”]
$60 Off Unlimited CrossFit Prototype Membership for College Students
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Spend your summer home getting into the best shape of your life with the best community and training around!
For all non-existing or previous CFP members, receive 50% off on your Elements (intro classes). The Elements program is a 1 month introductory program to teach the basic fundamental movements we preach at CrossFit Prototype. It also allows us to gauge your fitness level, movement quality and fitness goals!
After your 1 month of Elements, ALL COLLEGE STUDENTS will have the opportunity to receive $60 off an UNLIMITED MONTH TO MONTH MEMBERSHIP. This is a NO-CONTRACT option which allows you to workout for the summer without the yearly commitment!
Fill out the form below to get started and redeem your offer! A CFP team member will contact you with how to get started at CrossFit Prototype! We look forward to having you in!
I felt like writing this short blog post because I have noticed how well our community has been growing and I had to show my respect for all of you who represent the CFP name!
Here at CFP, we have a motto “WOD with Integrity”. As our top core value, “Integrity is a concept of consistency of actions, values, methods, measures, principles, expectations, and outcomes” (Wikipedia).
WOD as many of you know refers to our Workout of the Day. Hence the phrase ‘WOD with Integrity” literally means, give us your best, don’t cheat and take your workout as serious as you would anything else.
This concept though, applied out of the Box can have such a greater impact. Being known to have high integrity not only earns you respect but sets you apart from others. Some other definitions that come to mind are “character” and “honesty”. Why would you want to hire a liar to work for you? Or better yet, why would you be friends with someone that is of low moral character?… You wouldn’t!
Here at CFP, I can honestly say our community is filled with Integrity based individuals. You can see it during the WOD, you can see it after the WOD and if you got to know our members outside CFP, we wouldn’t expect anything less!
Here is some food for thought:
Whether you are building a community of CrossFitters, raising your kids or even networking with a group of professional individuals, Integrity should be at the core of your personal values. If this is established, great things will follow!
“Your WOD is the truest test of your Personal Integrity.”-CFP