Yes, Virginia, there really is a Santa Claus. His name is Arnie

Arnie Robinson sent me an email today with an early Christmas present. Arnie, organizer of the Resolution Games on Jan. 11-12 in Pompano Beach, Florida has decided to scale weights in the masters division!

67 year old Jim Bimonte of CFHC Pompano Beach is the latest master's competitor to sign up for The Resolution Games.

67 year old Jim Bimonte of CFHC Pompano Beach is the latest master’s competitor to sign up for The Resolution Games.

What does this mean? For starters, it means a 54-year-old woman, such as moi, won’t have to lift as much as a 40-year-old woman. There is still only one masters division, but Arnie has decided to scale the weights by decades. Age 40 is still the minimum age for the masters division, but 50-59-year-olds will lift 10 pounds less than the 40-49 year olds. Masters athletes between 60-69 will be scaled another 10 pounds and 70+ yearolds – God love em – will be scaled even more.

This is brilliant. Scaling within the masters division doesn’t require extra heats – which would make the competition last even longer. Masters still compete together and against each other, but with different weights depending on their age.

But wait, there’s more! Arnie has also created a Masters Team division! Yes, you heard me correct. A Masters Team division.

And if you order now, you get 25% OFF registration just because you are a Crossfitter of a Certain Age. Use coupon code CertainAge25 on the registration page.

This is our chance to show the CrossFit world that masters athletes will come out and compete if the playing field is level.

Thanks Arnie!

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It just so happens that I am a fan of Epic Meal Time – the YouTube internet cooking show devoted to  putting as much fat and calories as humanly possible into meat-based entrees.

It’s a pretty simple premise, kind of like Cheesecake Factory Gone Wild set to The Terminator soundtrack.

All I want for Christmas...

All I want for Christmas…

Taste seems to be a side issue. It’s calories and fat. And bacon strips and bacon strips and bacon strips and bacon strips and bacon strips…

I doubt I would have stumbled onto EpicMealTime on my own. No, I needed the knuckleheads at CFCP to turn me on to something this…this…this…profoundly odd.

I probably wouldn’t have noticed the guys watching and Epic Meal Time clip because if they’re not working-out they’re standing around the large computer screen mounted on the wall looking at YouTube videos of:

1. How to do a particular lift and the unfortunate consequences of doing it wrong

2. Reruns of the CrossFit games

3. Random weird stuff

4. Butts – specifically the butts of women who obviously do LOTS of squats

Read the rest of this entry »

There really is no elegant way for a woman my age to say this, but my snatch was on fire this morning!

Okay. Enough with the double entendres – I won’t share with you details of my explosive hips or random utterances of how good it feels. Seriously, my snatch was something to behold – at least I thought so.

Enough with the snatch jokes already.

Enough with the snatch jokes already.

Granted, I did not have much weight on the bar – a measly 45# – but I have not even attempted a snatch in weeks so I was anxious to see whether all the resistance work with chains and bands had paid off. Man, did it ever. I threw that sucker over my head like it was nothing and then I dropped down into a deep overhead squat over and over.

It not only felt good, it felt comfortable and fast. I had a feeling – a hope – that the Westside Barbell training I had been doing would give me the power and strength I desperately need. It did.

I am completely smitten with Westside. It makes sense to me and I need more things in my life that make sense. The training is hard – not just because it takes a lot of time but because I’m working little teeny, weeny muscles that I didn’t even know I had and they hurt like hell. Read the rest of this entry »

When I was a kid, swimming was my salvation.

Between  the first and second grade we moved from a small town in northwest Wisconsin to a well-to-do city in southwest Michigan. I was clueless. My idea of a country club was the Elks Club, where I had learned to swim.

In Michigan, I was surrounded by kids whose families belonged to real country clubs. Instead of the vending machines we had at the Elks Club, these country clubs had a real snack bars that served real french fries, which kids ordered and then charge to their family’s account. In my little mind they were getting french fries for free. Life wasn’t fair.photo (43)

Those kids made fun of us when they came to our decrepit pool at the Elks’ Club for a swim meet. They didn’t bring any dimes for our vending machines and couldn’t believe we had starting blocks made by someone’s dad. I inflicted my revenge by kicking their rich little asses.

I was fast.

Things only got worse in high school, where the rich kids wore monogrammed sweaters and went on family ski vacations. We stayed home and went to the community pool, which averaged about 70-degrees in the winter.

We were very good swimmers and by the time my brother graduated from high school, he was the faster high school swimmer in the United States. Every college in the country wanted him.

Swimming was the great leveler: it didn’t matter how much money your family had. If you were fast, you were popular. People wanted you on their team. Take off that monogrammed sweater and put on a Speedo and the only thing that mattered was how fast you could get from one end of the pool to the other.

I couldn’t keep up with them when it came to pedigree, but I could in the water. And that gave me self-esteem and confidence in myself.

What does any of this have to do with CrossFit? Read the rest of this entry »

I wear a lot of hats. Journalist. Homeowner. Dog lover. CrossFitter. Slayer of cockroaches and small rodents. Mistress of Duct Tape Repairs.

But above all, I am a mom and that means I have spent a lot of time – and I mean A LOT OF TIME –  picking up stuff and putting it away and telling others to pick up their stuff and put it away. It’s just what moms do.download

Even though my beloved daughter is an adult, I still pick up stuff and enjoy telling others to pick up their stuff and put it away. So you can imagine how much fun I have at the box, especially after a WOD that involves lots of toys, such as wall balls, boxes, jump ropes and kettle bells.

Actually, most of my fellow athletes at my box are very conscientious. But there are a few – WHO SHALL REMAIN NAMELESS FOR NOW – who do NOT PUT AWAY THEIR TOYS! Take Dom and Tommy and Ryan, for instance. They are strong young men who can lift a lot of weight, which means they go through a smorgasbord of plates: 5lb, 10lb, 15lb, 25lb, 35lb, 45lb… Read the rest of this entry »

Random conversation overheard at the box this week:

“I eat turkey bacon.” 

Turkey Bacon

Turkey Bacon

“Dude, I can’t believe you eat turkey bacon. Turkey bacon is so gay.”

“Turkey bacon is not gay, it’s got a lot of protein and hardly any fat.”

“My dog eats turkey bacon.”

“Then your dog is a beast. Turkey bacon is good for you.”

“Have you ever looked at what’s in turkey bacon? You’re going to glow in the dark when you’re old if you keep eating turkey bacon.”

“Turkey bacon is better than regular bacon. I eat it for breakfast.”

Piggy bacon

Piggy bacon

“Piggy bacon is better. Turkey bacon is un-American. Do you burn the American flag for breakfast, too? You probably drink soy milk.”

“I do not drink soy milk!”

“Soy milk will raise your estrogen levels. You better stop drinking soy milk with your turkey bacon.”

“I drink whole milk!”

“My dog drinks whole milk.”

“Then your dog is a beast!”

“Have you ever seen my dog?”

I have been to the mountaintop and there are a couple of bald guys up there who know how to lift some serious weight – like the kind of numbers that need commas.

Yes, I am talking about the legendary Louie Simmons and Shane Sweatt of Westside Barbell. A month ago I had never heard of Westside Barbell but I drank the Kool-Aid the at CrossFit Powerlifting Cert at our box a couple of weeks ago and now I am a groupie.

Louie Simmons: Need I say more?

Louie Simmons: Need I say more?

In fact, I just spent a glorious Sunday afternoon here in South Florida watching Louie Simmons videos on YouTube and reading articles about the Westside method instead of going to the beach.

Let’s just say that Westside Barbell is to powerlifting what Graceland is to Elvis fans. More world records have come from athletes that trained at Westside than any other gym in the world.

Which puts Louie Simmons right up there with Elvis, except Louie’s fan base is a little smaller and he doesn’t wear a white bell-bottomed jumpsuit.

Louie didn’t actually teach the Powerlifting Cert. That was done by Shane Sweatt, who has trained at Westside along with his wife Laura Phillips Sweatt, who has broken more than 40 powerlifting world records. Read the rest of this entry »