Technique Tuesday:  Stomping Your Feet vs. Moving Your Feet:  That is the Question!

Technique Tuesday: Stomping Your Feet vs. Moving Your Feet: That is the Question!

Many athletes feel the need to stomp their feet when catching the barbell.  In some cases, this can result in a donkey like kick, where the hamstrings curl, bringing the feet back and up, causing the athlete to jump backwards.

When we stomp our feet, the actual motion is creating a bending of the hip joint, resulting in a decrease of the angle at the joint.   This is called FLEXION.    This results in a decrease of power output needed to move the heavy barbell.  In both the snatch and the clean, power is generated by creating the greatest ground contact force through the legs, hips, then torso.  By creating as much EXTENSION, through the body before “ pulling” up on the bar, you can generate greatest amount of force needed to move under the bar to get a successful lift, create a better bar patch, resulting in optimal body alignment when receiving the barbell.

So, if you feel that by trying to make as much noise with your feet by stomping will give you a better lift, try to make the following changes and see what happens.  Simply changing your initial setup with foot placement and moving your feet can increase your chances of a successful lift.

Remember, like anything else,  its takes practice and a lot of patience to make permanent changes in your lifts (and maybe a good Coach to help you through it!).

1.     Start with your feet directly underneath your hips at the start of your lift.

2.     As you start to stand up, drive your feet into the ground, shifting your body weight from the top of the heel towards the balls of the feet.

3.     With your arms fully extended, but not locked out, extend your ankles (get on your toes), extend your knees, extend your hips, (THIS IS WHAT TRIPLE EXTENSION IS),

4.     As you rise on your tip toe, shoulders move up, slightly backwards while arms remain straight. 

5.     At the end of the toe position, you may find yourself lose contact with the ground slightly, then, quickly move your feet out into a squat position as you pull yourself underneath the barbell.

Keep Lifting,

Coach Arlene

 

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Technique Tuesday: "Chasing the Bar" and how to avoid it!

Some athletes consistently jump forward or “chase the bar” during the receiving position of the snatch.

One of the common reasons is that the bar path during the entire movement is too far away from the body.  If this occurs, the brain sends a signal to keep the athlete from falling over, resulting in an early pull of the barbell (athlete pulls barbell/weight closer to the body for balance).  The pull then slams the bar into the hips, causing a horizontal trajectory of the barbell instead of a vertical drive.  As a result, the athletes not only loses potential power in the movement, but has to jump forward in order to receive the barbell overhead.

So how do we fix it?

In some cases, it’s as simple as looking at the athletes starting position of the snatch,  as well as the body weight distribution during the pull of the snatch. Although the optimal starting position will be specific to the lifters’ proportions and preference, here is a standard starting position:

  • ·       Feet hip width apart
  • ·       Barbell over the balls of the feet (where the toes connect to the floor)
  • ·       Barbell should be touching the shin or as close as possible.
  • ·       Hips should be slightly higher than knee level.
  • ·       Shoulders slightly in front of or directly over the barbell.
  • ·       Chest up and normal curvature of the spine should be maintained throughout the movement.
  • ·       Body weight should be at the top of the heel (not the back), and entire foot should remain flat on the floor.

So, if you tend to chase the bar, start by fixing your starting position and see what happens...

If you have any questions or specific issues related to your lifts that you'd like to ask, email me at arlene.alpuerto@sbcglobal.net.

By: Coach Arlene

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Be hydrated, Stay Educated on the heat

By Coach Lizette

Courtesy of CrossFit Inc.

Courtesy of CrossFit Inc.

Heat exhaustion is a result of excessive heat and dehydration. If untreated, heat exhaustion can lead to heat stroke. One of the first signs of heat exhaustion is muscle cramping.

Signs and symptoms: paleness, dizziness, nausea or vomiting, general weakness, fainting, heavy sweating, pale/cold/clammy skin, weak but fast pulse, temperature of 99-102 degrees.

Heat stroke is a serious medical condition and requires immediate medical attention.

Signs and symptoms- temperature >103 with absence of sweat, strong and fast pulse, delirious, loss or change of consciousness, seizures, hot/red/dry skin.

The main cause of overheating is because the body is unable to cool itself down. When you over exercise, or have a strenuous workout in hot weather the body might not be able to produce enough sweat to cool you down. Dehydration is a big risk factor in heat related conditions. Heat exhaustion usually leads to heat stroke over an extended period of time, but can come on very quickly when it’s very hot or when someone’s overexerting themselves. Children under 4 and adults over 65 are also at higher risks for developing. Certain medications used for high blood pressure or heart conditions can also affect the body’s ability to stay hydrated and puts a person at higher risk.

Heat exhaustion treatment:

1)   Get out of the heat and rest.

2)   Cool the body down asap. putting ice packs under armpits and groin area.

3)    Go in a cooler room or in front of a fan.

4)   Remove any tight or unnecessary clothing.

5)   Drink plenty of fluids.

6)   Cool shower/bath.

Symptoms should improve within 15-30 minutes max. If no relief is felt, seek immediate medical attention. After recovering from heat exhaustion a person is more sensitive to high temperatures for 1-2 weeks, so they should avoid strenuous exercise or hot environments during that time.

Prevention Tips

  • Stay hydrated! Drink two to four cups of water every hour that you are doing activities outside in the heat or direct sun. Your body needs more water than usual when working in a hot environment because you’ll lose more fluids through sweating.
  • A general recommendation for those doing moderate- to high-intensity exercise is to drink 17 to 20 ounces of fluid two to three hours before exercise, and consider adding another eight ounces of water or sports drink right before exercise. During exercise, you should consume another seven to ten ounces of water every 20 minutes, even if you don't feel thirsty. Also, drink another 8 ounces within a half hour after exercise.
  • Avoid alcohol or caffeinated beverages if you are doing strenuous activities, especially in the heat. The caffeine increases your risk for dehydration. 
  • Try to avoid doing activities outside during the hottest parts of the day and in direct sunlight. 
  • Wear light-colored, loose, lightweight clothing when doing activities outside in the heat.
  • Take cooler baths or showers on a hot day to help cool you down. 
  • Take frequent breaks when working or exercising in the heat.

 

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Nelson Aguirre drops over 35 pounds

Nelson Aguirre drops over 35 pounds

What prompted you to join the 6 week challenge?

I saw a post from Coach Mike Orta on Facebook recruiting for his weight loss team. I was clueless to what it was, but I immediately replied to his post not knowing it was a challenge for the entire box.  I was at my heaviest weight ever so when I saw his post; it was like a sign from above. I started to hear more about it days after and how everyone was forming their own teams.  This was bigger than I thought and it seemed like everyone was doing the challenge. It was exciting for me but at the same time I didn't know what to expect.

Coach Mike quickly set the tone with us from the very beginning and it made a huge difference in my attitude and approach. He was not going to put up with any nonsense and he expected the best from us. I never saw this side of him before and I knew I was in for it. It was good wake up call for me and I took the challenge more serious.

What is the best result from the challenge for you individually?

The knowledge I gained from this experience is priceless. Coach Mike provided us with the tools and motivation that we can apply even after the challenge. 

I notice my body actually has muscle under all my flab. I really saw a difference in my body definition, something I didn't think I could attain at my age.  I know if I continue to follow Coach Mike’s plan, I can someday look like him. Sike!

What was the biggest challenge you faced?  

For me, it was cooking my meals. I don't cook so it forced to start cooking and that's what probably what helped help me in the end. My meals were so basic, there's no way I could gain weight.

Words of advice to other athletes wanting to work with Coach Mike Orta?

If Coach Mike told me to jump off a bridge because it would help me lose weight, I would probably do it. My advice is, follow every single detail from Coach Mike. You may not like it but believe me it's a game changer.

Final words of wisdom?

The challenge did keep me more focus because I didn't want to let my coach and team down. I started to workout more frequently and started to really challenge myself during the workouts. I have to say that my teammates were also a good source of motivation. They were part of the struggle and they constantly made me laugh, making it a lot easier for me. We had a great bond and that's something that will never change.   I made some good friends and I enjoy working out with them whenever I see them in the box.

Coach Mike O. Spotlight of Success!

Coach Mike O. Spotlight of Success!

1. What would you say were the keys to success for your team?

Giving up control and letting me lead them through the 6 weeks. That included: Trusting the process, developing a daily routine and sticking to it (no excuses), no special treatment/everyone was expected to follow the guidelines laid out for them, holding each person accountable for their share of the work, there also may have been a few threats of physical violence and being kicked off the team lmao

2. What type of diet did you implement?

I call it " The Hybrid." The diet was almost personalized for each person.  Each person was given a caloric intake based on their body type and starting body weight. Modifications were made every two weeks to account for weight lost in that time frame. So the diet was evolving and changing just like the Athlete was! If and Athlete was dropping body weight but not body fat and vice versa, changes were made to their Protein, Carb and Healthy Fat numbers to jump start body weight or body fat loss. 

3. Were there any exercises or activities that you say contributed to your team's success?

We met up for track workouts the first couple of weeks to establish some constancy and a good rhythm. After that, they were expected of continue these workouts on their own. A few people wanted to build lean muscle, so I prescribed workouts to increase muscle density the last 3 weeks or so.

4. What is your advice to continue the weight loss or keep the weight off?

The human body is amazing. Look what you were able to accomplish in 6 weeks. Imagine what you could do in 6 months!!!

Nutrition reminds me of a quote from the movie "Training Day" Denzel says, "This s#%t is Chess not checkers." Nutrition is Chess not checkers. To many people are looking for the quick fix. Getting ready for a wedding or a special occasion is not the ideal time to start a diet or Nutrition plan. Invest in yourself for the long haul. You only got one body. Treat it right and it will reward you back someday when you least expect it!

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Ramirez Family Six Week Challenge Recap

What prompted you to join the 6 week challenge? 

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When my wife told me that I had no choice...just kidding. We agreed that committing to each other and committing to a team would give us a sense of accountability; and accountability was a very good thing in our fitness goals. We didn’t want to let down the team or each other!  We wanted to contribute! 

At what point did you both say to each other, let's stick to this?

When my wife threatened to cut me if I tried to get out of it...just kidding. Once we thought about and laid out our plan (Specific, Measurable, Agreed-Upon, Realistic and Time-Based goals), there was no turning back. Once we applied our strategy, the results were immediate.

What is the best result from the challenge for you individually and as a couple? 

My wife looks at me with lusty eyes...Just kidding. We were able to accomplish in six weeks, what we were individually having trouble doing within the course of the last year! I managed to lose almost 17 pounds and 7% body fat. Wendy managed to lose 12 pounds and 4% body fat. What's even better is that we've continued our habits and the weight loss continues! 

What was the biggest challenge you faced?  

The biggest challenge was trying to rub the top of my head in a circular motion, while rubbing my belly simultaneously, in an opposite circular motion. That's hard. I gave up pretty quickly. Aside from that, I think that completely changing our eating habits was the most challenging. In terms of the types of food, we didn't feel like we gave up much. We simply focused on portion control and applied a common sense approach to eating (limit sweets, breads, etc.). Prior to the challenge, we were likely eating 2 to 3x the portion that we needed. We ordered and cooked our meals from Sun Basket, Blue Apron, and Hello Fresh. That was a game changer. We also increased the number of workouts and the intensity of those workouts. We complimented our daily WOD's with long walks, family hikes, post-WOD extra credit, etc. The support of our team and constant communication during the challenge was critical to staying on track. There were certainly times where we felt it was just too hard, we didn't have time, we’re too tired, etc. There were even times that we fell off the wagon. Our team was our biggest cheerleaders and we were theirs. There’s nothing like being fully supported. Oh, and Wendy giving up red wine was HUGE (in a Trump voice).

Words of advice to other couples wanting to do a challenge together?

Just listen to your wife.  Aside from that, just do it. I was in great shape before the challenge...and that shape was round. Now, not so much. We're both over 40 years old and I feel like we're in the best shape of our lives. We learned new skills that we continue to apply today. In the end, we stayed the course, worked harder than we thought we could, and the result was a healthier, happier, less stressed us. What could be better than that?!

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Flexibility VS Mobility - BLOG

 

By Coach Krista Kelly

 

1)    FLEXIBILITY

Flexibility is defined as “the quality of bending easily without breaking.” The problem with just focusing on stretching or flexibility is that you only work on lengthening muscle groups. When we just focus on lengthening the muscles, we are not refining our muscle control or improving our range of motion, and we are not working on moving more easily or preventing injuries.

 

2)    MOBILITY

Mobility is defined as “the ability to move or be moved freely and easily.” Mobility requires the application of flexibility. It requires the control of motor skills, the movement of joints and soft tissue and it requires coordination and precision. As Crossfitters, we strive for virtuosity in our movements, when we Improve our mobility, our movements begin to look effortless.

 

3)    THE BOTTOM LINE

Mobility should be a proactive approach, not a reactive approach. Many athletes don’t consider spending time working on mobility outside of class until they are injured. If there are movements that are difficult, look at why they are difficult. Many times mobility is the answer. The better range of motion we have, the more easily and efficiently we move. Often times, injuries stem from poor movements, so take the time to mobilize and work on perfecting the movements. Be proactive not reactive. 

Oly Comp coming back to Nela!

Sign up here for the Oly Competition on June 4th, 2017.  Space is limited to 40 athletes and priority list will be compiled from this form.

It's time to start working toward your goals!

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Competition Blog

The spirit of the Open is second to none, it is memorable and it is unforgettable.
— Coach Krista Kelly

Coach Krista Kelly

There are two types of athletes, those who ENDURE the workouts and those who ENJOY the workout.

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1. WHY?

Once a year we have the opportunity to do WODs that expand beyond the walls of our gym. All across the world, Crossfitters will be doing the same five workouts. The Open presents a way for you to challenge yourself and have some fun. Stop considering the Open and just make it happen.

2. HOW LONG?

FIVE WORKOUTS over  FIVE WEEKS – If you are already training on Fridays then you will already have the Open WODs programmed into your workout. Why not join your friends and comrades, after all, it is just five workouts.

3. WHATS THE BIG DEAL?
The entire gym meets at one location to cheer each other on and lift each other up. We all workout hard, we sweat, bleed, heave, we push through the pain, we holler, shout and sometimes, we collapse. The spirit of the Open is second to none, it is memorable and it is unforgettable.

WAIT…

BUT I CAN’T RX A WORKOUT AND I AM TOO OLD

Don’t make excuses! No you are not too old (there is a Masters division) and if you are looking to scale the workouts, there is a scaled division too. The Open is truly a unique experience. It is worth your time and the $20 for the enrollment.

We have a wonderful five weeks ahead of us and we hope you will join us.  

Sign up below!

https://games.crossfit.com/cf/login?returnTo=%2Fregister%2Fathlete&flow=games

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Nutrition Blog

Diets are something you do for a period of time, but eating healthy is a way of life.
— Coach Krista Kelly

By Krista Kelly

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1. LIST

Take a list of foods that you can eat with you to the store and do not deviate from it. If you only purchase items that are on the list, you are creating a healthy habit and you will encourage yourself to stick to it. If you deviate from the list, you are giving yourself the option to not stick with the plan.

 

2. EXPLORE
 

Venture out and try something new on the list each week. You don’t know if you like something until you try it. If you see a recipe that you would like to try, but it doesn’t fit your “plan,” then modify your recipe, don’t modify the plan.

 

3. OPTIONS

Don’t think of this plan as a diet, because its not. Diets are something you do for a period of time, but eating healthy is a way of life. That does not mean you need to restrict yourself. Find healthy options or alternatives. Instead of picking up a doughnut, go for a sweet apple, something that is satiating to your body and to your sweet tooth. (Plan this ahead of time, so when the time comes, you have a healthy option waiting for you)

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October Athlete of the Month

October Athlete of the Month

Meet Jessica (Luna) Torres, and join us in congratulating her on being the Nela Athletics Athlete of the Month. We are thrilled to recognize Jessica during the month of October. She has been working incredibly hard and has been consistent with her workouts and improve her diet - so much so that she lost 20 pounds in the last few months. We are very proud of her efforts and dedication, so take some time to congratulate Jessica the next time you see her at the box! Keep up the hard work, Jess! 

Tell us about yourself.

First of all, I am honored and humbled that I was chosen to be the AOTM. I am happy that my hard work and consistency is being acknowledged. Thank You! 

My name is Jessica Luna, soon to be Mrs. Torres. I am 33-years-old and was born and raised in Blythe, California. I attended Palo Verde College and obtained my Associates Degree in Liberal Arts. Soon after, I began working for a Men’s State Prison for a year and a half in the records department. In the Summer of 2006, I had to make a choice between pursuing my career as a Correctional Officer or moving to The Valley to attend California State University Northridge, to pursue my Bachelor’s Degree. I decided to leave my small town, where the population is approximately 20,000 people. 

Although leaving my family behind was not an easy decision, I found courage, because I wanted to challenge myself. I remember the drive to campus being eternal. I had to move into my dorm by myself on my 23rd birthday. The first couple of months were rough. Adjusting to the “city lifestyle” was not easy. I would constantly get lost trying to find my way around, I did not have any family nearby, and people were different from what I was used to. After a year, I finally adjusted and was trying to juggle between being a full-time student and full-time employee. Balancing both was tough, so I decided to put school on hold. 

Moving away from my family and friends was really challenging, but I don’t regret my decision because many great things have happened to me. I’ve grown so much and I also met the love of my life, Bryan.

What do you do for work?

I have my Emergency Medical Technician license. I work part-time at Playboy Enterprises as a floor manager. I am a full-time student at The Los Angeles Film School, where I am pursuing my Bachelor’s Degree in Entertainment Business. I will be graduating January 2017.

What are your favorite hobbies?

I like to go camping. I like to Karaoke. I also enjoy ATV riding, swimming, and taking long naps.  

I love to binge watch my favorite shows while having my favorite drink - a cold Michelada! But, what I enjoy the most is spending quality time with my family and friends.

What is your favorite food? What is your favorite junk food?

My favorite foods include: Thai food, Sushi and Mexican food. 

I am also open to trying anything new. I am a foodie! 

My favorite junk foods are popcorn, flaming hot cheetos, munchies and all of the above. Although, I do not have much of a sweet tooth.  

Which movement is your favorite/least favorite?

My favorite movements are hang power cleans, deadlifts and double unders. 

My least favorite movements include, burpees, HSPU, and I HATE those dirty snatches.   

How long have you been doing CrossFit? What got you started?

Bryan introduced and encouraged me to start doing CrossFit in 2012. We became members at CrossFit Chatsworth that year, and we did a couple competitions together. My favorite one was Battle of the Boxes at the LA Fit Expo. In 2014, we moved to Pasadena. We tried a couple of gyms, but they just didn’t satisfy our needs. We then came across CFER and fell in love with the environment, the coaches, and how welcoming everyone was. 

Do you have a favorite CFER memory?

What comes to mind is the first time I climbed the rope and I had the best cheerleaders cheering me on: Vanessa and Noreida. 

There was another time when I was chatting and laughing away and I was not paying attention to Coach MJ while he was explaining the WOD. During the WOD I asked Vanessa if we were supposed to rest and she told me, “Just to keep running.” Well… I did! I was the only one running while everyone was resting. I was so excited because I thought I was moving faster than the guys and that is unusual. When I returned everyone was laughing and MJ asked if I was doing my own WOD. I learned my lesson and now I make sure I pay extra attention.   

What motivates you?

My health is my primary motivation, and I have a group of motivators. Bryan always encourages me to push harder. Noreida always makes me add weight to my bar when I can barely lift it. 

Nicole loves to remind me that my wedding is around the corner.

Vanessa bullies me when there is running in our WOD. Thank you ladies. 

Do you have a favorite quote?

“If you can’t fly then run, If you can’t run then walk, If you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward” -MLK

9/23/16

SKILL: Back Squat

WOD: 

5 RFT:

12 Plated Push-ups

12 Alternating Pistols

9/22/16

SKILL: Rowing Intervals

WOD: AMRAP in 8 minutes

2 Rope Climbs

8 Deadlifts (225/153)

12 V-ups

9/21/16

SKILL: Muscle-up Practice Session

WOD: "Nasty Girls"

3 RFT:

50 Air Squats

7 Muscle-ups

10 Hang Power Cleans (135/93)

9/20/16

SKILL: 25 minutes to find a 1-RM Snatch

WOD: 2 RFT: 

15 Toes-to-Bar

30 KB Swings (53/35)

45 Double Unders

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Endurance WOD 9/19/16

Skill: Tabata Partner Work

 

WOD: Partner WOD

 

2 Leg Cranks

 

800-400-200

 

2 Leg Cranks

 

*1 Leg Crank = 25 Squats, 25 Lunges, 25 Jumping Squats, 25 Jumping Lunges.

*Each Partner Runs Each Distance. 

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9/19/16

SKILL: 200m Run x3  - Rest 1 minute between attempts.

WOD: Against an 18 minute clock, ascend the ladder:

1 Bear Complex

6 Lateral Burpee OT Bar

2 Bear Complex

6 Lateral Burpee OT Bar

3 Bear Complex

6 Lateral Burpee OT Bar

4 Bear Complex

6 Burpee OT Bar

ETC...

9/18/16

SKILL: Ring Rows

WOD: 8 RFT

10 MB Cleans (20/14)

10 Sit-ups

10 Wall Balls

10 Push-ups

9/17/16

SKILL: Press Ladder

WOD: Three Rounds for Max Reps

2 minutes of:

250m Row

Max Power Cleans (155/103)

Rest 2 minutes