It’s a great day, week or month when you can make it to class and have a nice organized and well thoughtout workout planned for you. But lets be real, that takes planning and organization for all that to happen. And sometimes, the stars just don’t align and you find yourself at the end of the day and no workout has been done. Now what? It all depends on what your goals are and why you wanted to show up.  Lets play with a few different scenarios:

Scenerio 1:

Your goal: Consistenly Workout out 3 x week for 3 months. 

So, you missed class.  And that doesn’t mean you can’t workout. There are a ton of easy at home workouts. Go for a 10min or 30min jog. Or do a mix of body weight movements amrap or emom style. Or find a hill and run or walk up and down it multiple times. 

Scenerio 2:

Your goal: Increase your level of fitness so you can run a mile under 10min by end of Dec.

So, you missed class. And that doesn’t mean you can’t workout and continue to increase your level of fitness. There are a ton of easy at home workouts. Go for a quick jog, run some intervals. Do a mix of bodyweight movements like an amrap 10 or emom 10 with burpees. All of this work will contribute to you running faster when done with intention.

Scenerio 3: 

Your goal: Weight loss (10 pounds)

So, you missed class. Well, exercise truly isn’t the best tool for weight loss. Eating balanced and healthy IS. So, go for a walk or run (you will feel better and make better choices). And more importably, be mindful of what you are eating. Are you eating lean protein? Adding in lots of colorful vegetables and watching your portion size? The nutrition choices play a large part in what happens on your weigh loss journey. Also make sure you are getting in plenty of water and adequate sleep. If your body is too stressed (lack of sleep or overly stressed by work or other stressors) is doesn’t like to release body fat. 

We miss you in class, but that doesn’t mean you can’t workout and make healthy choices. 

Remember that this holiday season.


12/13/18 THURSDAY
Special Breath Class @ 7:30pm
A Fundraiser for: Set Her Free

This Thursday we have a special fundraiser to supper the organization: Set Her Free which supports underpriveldged women in Uganda. Coach PJ Nestler will be coaching breath class at 7:30pm. This will be replacing our regular mobility class. Any donation is welcome and click this link for more info. or to donate if you cannot make the class and want to support.


Wednesday’s Workout

A) OH Shoulder mobility Test/retest 

B) Nancy’s Drunk Uncle

400m Run
15 OH Squats (95/65)
200m Run
5 OH Squats
400m Run
15 OH Squats
200m Run
5 OH Squats
400m Run
15 OH Squats + 10 Burpees “OTB”


Thursday’s Workout

A) Hypoxic Breathwork on Erg
3-4 Rounds of
:25 :5 Intervals (Nasal / Breath hold)
:50 :10 Intervals

B) EMOM 10
3-5 Sumo Deadlift 

6 Get-ups
32′ Loaded Balance Beam Walks
8 Single-leg RDLs
:30 Bar Hang 

I attended class Tuesday and it reminded me of where I am at.  The last three months have been focused on yoga, which has been truly wonderful. I’ve gotten more in touch with my body, my emotions and slowing down which always brings me joy. Coming back to find a heavy 3 thruster I found I had more space to move with (hooray), but really had to be conscious of moving fast and getting my hips through. I went where heavy was for today. This is where I am at. I am grateful to have a fully functioning body that allows me to move it in space where I want to. It gives me signals and feedback that I interpret how I will.  I am grateful to have a long history of strength training and I have to continue to practice my speed under the bar, reconnecting with the aggressive power and strength needed to move a heavy barbell. I’m thankful for each opportunity we get to connect, play and grow.

Wednesday’s Workout

A) Dry Land Swimming
4 Rounds for the Experience:
12/8 cals AB @ 90-95% RPE
3 Breaths
Max distance Farmer’s Carry on breath hold / exhale
Rest coach’s interval
*3 Rounds breath hold as you want, 1 Round breath hold on exhale

B) 8 RFT:
Row cals (20/16)
10 Burpees to target
Rest 2 minutes b/w rounds


Thursday’s Workout

“The Broomstick Mile”
For Time With a PVC Pipe (except the mile)
25 Back Squats
25 Front Squats
25 Overhead Squats
400 meter Run
25 Shoulder Presses
25 Push Presses
25 Push Jerks
400 meter Run
50 Hang Squat Cleans
400 meter Run
50 Power Snatches
400 meter Run

Your body is precious. It is your vehicle for awakening. Treat it with care. 

  • Siddhartha Gautama

This quote is from the book The Seven Spiritual Laws of Yoga by Deepak Chorpa and David Simon. In the past few months my yoga teacher training has had me reading a lot of books, as well as practicing breathing, postures and meditation. There has been a lot of talk about the mind  and the control that it has over our actions, reactions and feelings.  Most of our minds are insanely busy, with the cell phones, computers and endless streams of media, they don’t seem to quite down. And when we are aren’t on our devices, we might just be thinking, or overthinking a situation or how to do something. This battle of balance of thinking and non thinking is constant. This can be helped by quitting the mind. 

Quieting the mind through breath is a wonderful way to bring attention out of the mind and into the body. We’ve been practicing it here in a variety of ways (breath class and regular class) and many of you have seen the benefits.  Some of you are able to find this state in a workout, you’ve practiced a movement so much you don’t have to think about it, you can just find your flow. It’s a beautiful thing. Bringing more focus to breath while moving can help bring calmness, awareness and more efficiency to you body.

Quieting the mind through breath and sitting is another wonderful tool to connect with yourself. Find a quite space, look and focus inward. The more we connect with ourselves the freer we can be in life.

As we are in day three of Re test week- take a look at what you want to accomplish, what time or weight you want to beat, how you want to it to feel or look when you are doing it, then focus on the breath!

Wednesday’s Workout
Re-test Week

For time:
Run 1 Mile
50 DB Alt. Box Step-ups (50/35) (24/20)
Run 1 Mile


Thursday’s Workout
Re-test Week

A) Tidal Volume Breathing Test: Overhead Squat (12 minutes)

B) 20 Minutes to find Heaviest Load: 1 Hang Snatch + 1 Snatch + 2 OHS

1 mile Run
      -rest 4mins.
800m Run
      -rest 3mins.
400m Run

What’s really hard in life? Isn’t that a good question? I bet each of you reading this would give me a million different definitions of what is hard. Just this past weekend most of the staff and some Oak Park students headed to Malibu to play and learn at the XPT workshop.  Some of us had briefly talked about what was going to be hard for us individually. I thought getting to the ice bath wasn’t going to be that bad, my thought was “I’ll just breathe”. The hard part for me was getting myself to the bottom of the pool to pick up a dumbbell and bring it up to the surface. I KNOW that my breath is my biggest tool, because I use my breath to help keep calm in many situations.   When I’m under water… there is NO breath to be used.  So, what I perceived to be hard was (imagine that).  I had the biggest challenge moving under water with dumbbells, or I should say swimming with dumbbells was my biggest challenge. The thing is I know this is where my growth happens, when it’s uncomfortable and hard, and it’s usually the stuff I don’t want to do. THAT IS GROWTH. 

In 2012 I participated in one of my first Insight Seminars. The intention of insight is to learn to live from your heart. Now, I’m really talking about hard. The thing that was hard for me was getting up in front of all the participants to share.  We were invited to  get up in front of the group and share what we were aware of. I don’t usually think of myself as having trouble talking in front of people, unless of course I have to talk about my emotions. So, when I got up in front of the group all I did was cry. I couldn’t get words out of my mouth. I was so scared to talk about what I was feeling that the only thing I was able to do was cry. Over a few days it got better, but this was HARD and that was growth. 

I share all this with you because we all perceive things differently. What brings joy to me can bring a feeling of dread to you and vice versa. Our intention at Oak Park that we all want to learn, try new things and continue to work on the not so fun stuff as well as all the other fun stuff. As we do, we grow and become more balanced people both in and out of the gym.  I’ll always have to continually work on expressing how I feel, (which has gotten a lot easier), and remind myself to do that things that I don’t like doing and I appreciate having this community of support to do that. 

Wedesday’s Workout

“CF Games Open 17.1”
For time:
10 Dumbbell Snatches (50/35)
15 Burpee Box Jump Overs (24/20)
20 Dumbbell Snatches
15 Burpee Box Jump Overs
30 Dumbbell Snatches
15 Burpee Box Jump Overs
40 Dumbbell Snatches
15 Burpee Box Jump Overs
50 Dumbbell Snatches
15 Burpee Box Jump Overs
(20-minute time cap)

If you got time capped, add the number of reps you failed to complete to your time in seconds. E.g. If you got 210/225 reps (didn’t finish the last 15 Box Jumps) your time would be 20:15.


Thursday’s Workout

A) Ascending ladder for Quality and Creativity
4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16…….
Pull up
Push up
Squat x 2
Time cap: 15

B) Bench Press
Peak 5 x 4 @ 85%
Base 5 x 6 By Feel


Every other week I ponder what to share with you all. Sometimes I think it will be super thoughtful, emotional or insightful. Then at other times I think I’ll just share about gym etiquette, but I feel we are past that.  So at the end of today I leave you with this quote.

“Nothing ever goes away until it has taught us what we need to know.” Pema Chödrön

Wednesday’s Workout

“The Riv-Ram”
AMRAP 25 – for total reps
6 Power Cleans (135/95)
9 Pull Ups
300m Run

9 Power Cleans (135/95)
12 Pull Ups
300m Run

12 Power Cleans (135/95)
15 Pull Ups
300m Run
(add 3 reps to every every movement every round …)


Thursday’s Workout

A) Squat Mobility (10 minutes)

B) 6 Rounds :30:30
Blocked Kip Swings / Kipping PUs
Alternating Pistols
(12 minutes)

C) 7-10 Rounds for Quality Load:
1 Power Snatch + 1 OHS + 1 Snatch + 1 OHS
Rest ~ :90

Our perception that we have “no time” is one of the distinctive marks of modern Western culture.

“Margaret Visser”

I’m currently in week 4 of my yoga teacher training and it’s been a joy.  Each sunday we spend the morning studying history and philosophy, then we have a 90 minute yoga practice as a group.  We take a lunch break to return in the afternoon to anatomy, postures and practice teaching.

In August I received 10 books for the curriculum  which we will read over the entire training. One book in which I’m truly enjoying is “Brining Yoga to Life” by Donna Farhi.  

The above quote is at the start of one of the chapters entitled Slowing Down. It states that one of the precursors to yoga practice is slowing down. Slowing down the mind, the body, feelings and emotions. We are all constantly over scheduled, overworked and overbooked. We rush from one appointment to the next, and hurriedly go from Monday till friday in anticipation of the weekend.  If we are lucky, maybe we have some down time.  Or maybe we are rushing from one social engagement to the other. The truth is we all have a few minutes to sit down and breathe. It just feels like we don’t.  If we do take the time to breath its likely that the sky will not fall down and no major problems will occur. But we will never know unless we actually slow down. 


Wednesday’s Workout

A) 4 rds of 40:20
Minute 1: 90/90 Split Squat Lunge
Minute 2: Inverted Row
Minute 3: Pike Push Ups

B) Reflect

C) Sumo Deadlift
PEAK: 4x 1 @ 90%
BASE: 5×3 (by feel)


Thursday’s Workout

Beep Test – New Leader Board!

AMRAP Run 20meter shuttles – Progressive Temp


Cooking is like snow skiing: If you don’t fall at least 10 times, then you’re not skiing hard enough.

Guy Fieri

The above quotes really resonates will me. I’ve had so many kitchen fails I can’t even count and  I keep getting up and trying again because I enjoy the process and find joy, curiosity in the kitchen. Cooking for others is how I show people I care for them. 

This weekend I get to be creative for those attending the pop up and you are all invited.  Cooking and sharing food is one of my very favorite things to do. So, this weekend I’m having a Pop-up Picnic. 

This is the third year in a row my good friend Nina and I are cooking for any and all that want to attend.(you must RSVP to save your spot).  Nina and I met here at the gym many years ago and we found we both have a love for food both cooking and eating it.  We get together often to cook new things, talk about food, eat food and enjoy each other’s company in the kitchen.  A few years ago we said- hey… lets actually do this. Like serve food to people like it’s our job for the day.   And we did!

In 2016 our former CFLA member Woogene rented us his restaurant (Fundamental LA) for the day and we served brunch to 108 people. Wow, it was so fun, and so hard. We had a blast, felt super supported and learned so much. Thank you to all that came out. 

In 2017 Ortal and Simon open their home to us and we did a 5 course dinner for 40 people. It was another wonderful experience to share food that we prepared with you all. 

This year we are taking it outside to a local park. Grilling, chopping, and baking, picnic style. Because there is nothing better than eating outside.  You bring a water bottle and a blanket, we will provide the food and a fun experience. $35/adult $15/kid is the cost for your evening out where we will serve tasty food.  

RSVP to coach Shirley before wednesday at noon!

Wednesday’s Workout

A) For Time: 100/80 Cal Row (Gear 3)

B) Sumo Deadlift
PEAK: 5 x 3 @ 80%
BASE: 5×4 (by feel)

C) Press
5×3 (70-80%)

Thursday’s Workout

“OP Exatlón”
In Teams of 2 or 3:
250m Row
Plank Walk with weight
6 Burpees
Army Crawl
8 MB Sit 2 Stand Slams!
10 Jump Squats
4/6 Cals on A.Bike
6 Puntería!

Our kids classes started this week.  If you are a kid, know a kid or are looking to move, play, work hard and get stronger, fitter and build confidence. Send them on in. email coach Shirley  for more information

Wednesdays Workout

A) Shoulder CARs (Controlled articular rotations, aka shoulder circles!)

B) EMOM 10
ODD: 45 sec active bottom of squat hold
EVEN: 10 sec (top/bottom) pull-up hold, 20 sec blocked kipping/swings
Peak: Top/Kipping pull-up
Base: Bottom/kipping swing

C) Snatch Balance 4×3 by feel (not more than 70% of 1RM SN)

D) Segmented Snatch Pull 4×3 by feel (not more than 90% of 1RM SN)


Thursday’s Workout

A) Bench Press
BASE: 5×6 (by feel)
PEAK: 5×4 @ 75%

B) 6 RFQT:
10 SA Rvs lunge w/OH DB Press
100 Rope Skips

C) Reflection

Guest Post by:  Kelsey Krasignor

Learning how to listen to your body and modify/scale workouts accordingly can transform your relationship to working out and improve your overall health. When I first started CrossFit, I thought I had to do the workout exactly as written or as close to that as possible, regardless of my capabilities (which at the time were little to none) or my body’s limitations. I ignored my body and it’s various aches and pains (which shockingly at 20 years old were a lot of aches and pains!). I was reluctant to scale and nervous to modify or do a less complex movement. This was partly due to my desire to already be at CrossFit Level 1000 and also because prior to CrossFit, I had never really practiced any mindfulness or spent time trying to listen to my body.


As I continued to go to classes, I learned how to listen to my body and was empowered by my coaches and classmates to do what’s best for me as opposed to what’s written on the white board. I learned that doing less reps or a different movement does not take away from the work that I put in or make me lesser than my fellow classmates (#compareanddespair).


At this point I have been doing CrossFit on and off for 8 years and these days I personally modify/scale like it’s my job (and that’s perfect because I’m a millennial, so I’m supposed to have like, three jobs at the very least). If I’m feeling really tight from a bad night’s sleep (which I of course blame my cat, and/or boyfriend, and not on that half a loaf of banana bread I ate right before bed), it’s okay for me to scale the weight. Or if I know that there’s no way I’ll finish within the time cap, it’s okay for me to modify the rep scheme. Lately, I have been rehabbing my wrist after a surgery and I will often turn to dumbbells instead of a barbell, or to an elevated bench push-up as opposed to doing them on the floor.

While a workout can still be intimidating (hello, anything involving running), I feel comfortable making modifications and scaling to best suit my skill level and my body. And most importantly, I don’t berate myself for not being able to do the workout exactly as written because I know that I’m making safe and healthy choices for me, so that I can eventually get to the point where I CAN do the workout as written.


Lastly – don’t forget: while the coach is there to coach you through the movements and workout, they are also there as a resource and collaborator to help you figure out what’s best for you. So don’t be afraid to shout across a classroom “HEY NICHOLAS, CAN I DO SUMODEADLIFTS INSTEAD?” But also don’t do that because that would be rude to your classmates.


So, do not think that what’s written on the board is the end all be all. Take time to check in with your body and give yourself permission to modify and scale if you need to do so. This will ultimately lead to keeping your workout experience happy and healthy.  

Wednesday’s Workout

10 Rounds:
2 min to complete:
(not including the rest)
250m Row
10 Burpees to a Target
-60 Second Rest-


Thursday’s Workout

A) Rowing Gear Pyramid (7 min)

B) 10 Min EMOM
Hang Power Snatch + 2 OHS (hold bottom for 3 seconds)

C) Base:
3 Rds FQT (12 min cap):
2 Hang Snatch Pull
2 Hang Snatch High Pull
1 Hang Power Snatch
500m Row

3 Rrds FQT (12 min cap):
3 Hang (Squat) Snatch (135# / 95#)
500m Row

Cycle 17 has come and gone and now I (we) can further reflect on what was done and how it went and what to do moving forward. At the start of the cycle I wrote about how I wanted to improve on my pushing ability. This was from friday’s strict HSPU work vs. the kipping work, as I have the skill to kip a HSPU, but would like more strict pushing strength. In general I always want to do better on retest and feel better too. But what I actually worked on was not specific to the cycle. I surfed most weeks which included paddling (pulls) and work on breath and balance. I showed up to class and worked on hip mobility. 

Monday: The Truth
On my reflection sheet I noted I had good breathing on the bike and worked hard. Noted that I could move more, get feet moving faster, ignore my leg pain.  I had noted that I would set a specific number of meters for the retest. As I know having a goal to reach for from experience is a hugely helpful tool for improving. I didn’t end up retesting the truth as I was away with my family.

Wednesday workout: Nasal Priority
In my notes I commented that I felt amazing, was light on my feet and did my KB swings unbroken. Things to do better, clear my nose more, breathe into my diagram and find a rhythm on lunges with breath.  I continued to work nasal over the cycle with focus on diaphragmatic breathing. Turns out it didn’t help time improve on retest week. In fact I scored worse, but I also have to keep my mind that the previous friday my grandpa died and I flew to Oregon to be with my family. Stress IS real. It was one of the few times that I wanted to walk during the 800m runs and took large rests between elements. 

Friday workout: Body weight test
What I did well: I wrote that I controlled my decent on HSPU and had set number of pulls helped me reach my goal of 30 pull ups.  I wrote that I needed to release my quads/hip flexors before pistol work, activate gluts more.  And the actions:  Hang after class to improve on the flexed arm hand and work OH mobility. I did improve on my HSPU with test: S10/K16 to retest: S14/K21. My bar hang did not improve, which is not a suprise as I did not work on mindfully during the cycle, pull ups stayed the same and I increased my pistols. 

Looking back I will give myself 1 thing to focus on during next cycle and be more specific. Showing up can be enough, showing up mindfully is VERY helpful, but there is no replacement for specific, targeted task/time oriented work that is scheduled and thoughtful.

How did things go for you guys?

Wednesday’s Workout

With a Partner:
Row for Max Distance in 30 minutes


Thursday’s Workout

Partner “Jack”
10 Push Presses (115/85 lb)
10 Kettlebell Swings (24/16)
10 Box Jumps (24/20 in)

Thursday’s 6 PM run class
Montana Avenue and Ocean Avenue:
3 Runs 
#1  One Mile Run – Nasal Priority
-rest 3mins-
#2 Unknown Distance – Power Nasal Priority
-rest 4mins-
#3 Adventure Run: Stairs, Bridge, Sand, and Water – Get it done!