February Athlete Focus: Greg Bleszinski

February Athlete Focus: Greg Bleszinski

Greg going us at CrossFit Ad Finem back in the spring of 2017. He was in town for work and wanted to drop in for a few days.  He had already been doing CrossFit for 4 years and was trying to keep on schedule while away from home. Fast forward 8 months and now Greg and his family live in NH and he is a full time member at CFAF.

From that first day he dropped in I knew Greg was a special guy.  Always energetic and positive with everyone in class, no matter the day.  Brings a smile to everyone’s face with his constant joking and boisterous energy each and every day, and never once has let someone finish a workout in silence. He supports each member in class as well as pushes himself to the max each and every day. I often joke with Greg about his endless energy and how Marianne deals with him on a daily basis!  It’s hard to imagine seeing him any other way.

Like most of us flooding CrossFit boxes around the world, Greg has his own story.  In 2010 Greg and Marianne lost their oldest son and child in a car accident.  As anyone can imagine it was devastating for all of them.  Greg coped with the loss by drinking and noticed he had created some unhealthy habits with himself as was heading down the drain very fast.  Two years later Greg found himself walking into his first CrossFit gym. In his words, “CrossFit saved my life. I struggled with alcoholism after my son died in a car accident.  If I didn’t find CrossFit I don’t know where I’d be or if I’d even be alive.”

I know we’re very happy having Greg as a part of the CFAF family and are grateful to have him and his energy here day in and day out.  We look forward to celebrating many more years of CF with Greg.  Here’s a little more info about the wonder that is Greg Bleszinski:

Q: How long have you been doing CrossFit? 

A: 5 years

Q: What’s your favorite move and/or WOD? 

A: Throwing toys to Boone! Seriously, I love doing Clean & Jerks and my favorite WOD is “Murph” because it pushes and test you.  Plus it’s only once a year. 

Q: What’s your least favorite move and/or WOD? 

A: Anything that requires shoulder mobility, especially Overhead Squats. 

Q: What’s your Favorite Movie? 

A: Comedy and/or Action movies for sure! Probably Step Brothers, Old School, and Man on Fire. 

Q: Favorite “cheat food”? 

A: Ice Cream – anything w/ chocolate but prefers Moose Tracks. 

Q: If you could have one super power or be one super here who/what would you/it be? 

A: Super Hero – Mother Theresa because of her unlimited compassion and empathy. 

Q: What’s your #1 goal at CFAF? 

A: Health, age is a number.  Live and lead a happy and healthy life. 

News & Changes Coming to CFAF!!

Good Afternoon Everyone!

Hope you’re all recovering well from a strong week of training.  I wanted to address, bring up, clear up, announce, and all the other things happening in the next few weeks at CFAF and figured this would be the best place to get it all out.  I’m sure questions will follow so please don’t hesitate to email, FB Message, or ask in class with any concerns or excitement you may be having!  So here it is, the GOOD and the NOT AS FUN news….

Not As Fun News First

  • Coaching Update:
  1. Coach Sue will be taking some time away from coaching classes at CFAF.  She won’t be leaving the gym, just taking a much needed and deserved break from coaching.  I’m sure many of you in the 630pm classes that have had Sue are thinking, “WHYYYYYYYY? THIS IS HORRIBLE!!!!” Have no fear, as much as not having Sue in class to coach doesn’t mean she isn’t around to chat with and occasionally ask questions too.  We all have outside (the gym) lives however exciting or not we think they might be.  Like all of you, so doesn’t Sue and with her work load increasing, coaching, getting in her workouts, AND giving Howie some attention…sanity starts to wear out (not that Sue was all that ‘sane to begin with).  She has left the door open to return in the future with time allowing. Again, Sue will be around the box and may occasionally fill in for a class if we’re in a bind.  With all that being said, words cannot express the amount of thanks and gratitude I have for Sue.  She started, and continues to be, one of my longest tenured athletes.  I’ve had the privilege of seeing her grow as a person and as an athlete, improving her fitness and wellness tremendously since we met back in 2012.  And though “she’s not going to complain” she’s always been a dedicated and hard worker with whatever workouts I give her (yea, even the ones with Wall Balls).  Sue, it’s been a pleasure and we all hope to see you at the front of the class with a PVC pipe in hand yelling at everyone sometime in the future.
  2. With Sue taking a break from coaching we are upping our search for one to two more coaches to join the team.  I had an interview with a young man last Friday that seems eager to start up and who just received his CFL1 recently.  If we can make the schedule work you’ll see him shadowing classes for a few weeks before we give him the control of a class. I’ll keep you posted if and when we move forward with this.
  • Schedule Changes: Starting next week (1/29 – 2/3) there will be one slight change to our schedule. We are removing Thursdays 4:30pm class from the schedule.  At the moment we don’t have coverage for it, at least consistently.  Adam will be coaching Thursdays 5:30pm & 6:30pm classes and if he’s able to arrive early enough will open the box for Open Gym prior to those classes.  Over the next few weeks he’ll update people on FB if he’s going to do so.  I was weighing on the idea of removing the MWF 12Noon class, but over the last two weeks we’ve seen an up-tick in attendance so we’re going to keep in on the schedule and reevaluate down the road.


  • The Open Begins: The last few day to a week you’ve heard myself and the coaches refer to “The Open” a few times.  The Open is the beginning stage of the CrossFit Games season. “But, Mat, ummm, I can’t even do a pull up!” That’s Ok, heres how it works at CFAF:
    • The Open workouts are announced every Thursday night at 8pm EST on the CrossFit Games website (I go to YouTube as it streams much better) starting February 22nd.
    • Every Friday evening we run a “Friday Night Lights” event from 430pm to 7/730pm for people to complete the Open WOD for the week.  You can do this whether you register (and pay $20 to CrossFit) for the Open or if you’re just doing the workout as your Friday WOD.
    • The difference is we will have heat times for people to sign up for.  We won’t be able to release those times until after the announcement of the workout is released because we won’t know how much time to allow for.  Depending on the workout, we set heat times and # of athletes per heat based on equipment.
    • “What if I can’t do the evening?” – not a problem.  All our normal AM classes will run at the usual times and we program the Open WOD for those classes as well. If you can’t come in anytime on a Friday and you want to do the workout, you can ask a coach if they’ll be available to help for you and judge on Saturday (or Monday, but we will have regular schedule Monday so let the coaches know in advance if you plan to do the workout and if we will have space).
    • “So are there still classes on Fridays?” – No, no set classes for the five weeks of the Open.  Everyone are encouraged to still come in as these nights get loud and some pretty spectacular stuff happens every year from first pull ups or muscle ups to PR lifts and so on. Lots of fun and comrarderie! We will post the heat times as soon as we’re able on Thursday evening (may be later than 830 as I have class on most Thursday’s but it will be up at some point).
    • Again, these are fun events here at CFAF and a great way to test yourself annually.  If you do decide to sign up on the games website make sure to add yourself to the CrossFit Ad Finem team. We will have all the WOD’s posted in Triib and will run weekly box Leaderboards on Triib for each workout.
  • The 3rd Annual Blizzard Beatdown (CFAF In House Comp): Sat. Feb 17th 9am to Noon/1pm. 
    • This is the 3rd year running our Winter In House Comp.
    • It’s open to ALL CFAF members as we set the WOD’s to be manageable for all levels (if you have any injuries or limitations see a coach prior to signing up to see if this is something you should do).
    • Cost = $15 for Team T-Shirts & registration Opens TODAY – FRIDAY 1/26!!! We’ll shoot to get all interested athletes signed up by Friday – 2/2 to receive shirts. You can bring cash or check to me at the gym anytime from now until then.
    • The teams are put together and picked by the coaches who will serve as the team Captains.
    • This, more than anything, is about having fun and community.  Yes we all want to win, and maybe even more so everyone wants to beat my team.  However that is all secondary to community and fun. The WOD’s will be challenging yet doable for each athlete. We generally break the workouts down into three levels and the coaches discuss where they think each athlete should go as well as discuss with their team what they feel most comfortable/confident in doing.
    • You won’t want to miss this as it always brings some laughs, lots of shit talking, and tons of fun for our CFAF family.
    • Also, feel free to invite friends and family to come and watch if you’d like!
  • Other Ideas in the Works: 
    • Kids Class: Working on a possible spring/summer time to add this 2-3 days a week for a 30-45 window. Still have lots to do before opening this up with schedules, training on kids coaching, etc. but as soon as we are ready to launch we’ll let you know!  This is something Lauren and I have talked about since we opened and before we had our army of children.
    • “Fit On the GO”: I had the pleasure of having a 45min phone conversation with CrossFit Games Champion (2008) and NorCal CrossFit (as well as about 15 satellite affiliates) owner Jason Khalipa a few weeks back.  We discussed many different things about our businesses, good and bad, and how to improve in various areas.  One of the many ideas we talked about was a 30min “Express-Fit” class.  This would be similar to a CrossFit Lite class where there are no barbell movements (Powerlifts, Olympic Lifts, etc..) and more focused around bodyweight movements, ‘cardio’ exercises, with KB’s, med balls, and other light to non-weighted objects. It would run similar to our standard group classes however a very condensed version.  We’d still have a warm up and mobility and WOD just not to the volume or weight/strength intensity as our standard group classes. Similar to the Kids Class we are going to review the schedule and look to add it in hopefully in the next few months.  Stay tuned!


I believe that is all the news for now but if anything comes to mind I’ll make sure to let everyone know.  Keep up the great training and those in the Nutrition Challenge you have less than a week left.  Hopefully you all won’t forget the hard work you’ve put in the last few weeks and go back to your old ways of eating and so on. The results are showing in the gym, and from many of you it sounds like the results are showing in how your feeling and on the dreaded scale. Keep kicking ass and don’t settle for easy or mediocre, you deserve better.






News & Rumblings ~ July 2017

Good Morning Everyone!

I hope everyone are doing well this gloomy Tuesday morning.  Keep in mind it’s just weather it doesn’t dictate your attitude, at least it shouldn’t. Back to this post! There are a couple of things I wanted to address and announce to the community so here it goes!

  1. As you awoke this morning you may have seen my social media post with the Merrimack Fire Dept. helmet and uniform.  Some of you know about this but I’m sure many do not but I have begun working on their On-Call division on Monday evenings.  This is a dream of mine since I was a kid and witnessed my own house catch fire while living in Auburn, NH.  I’ll never forget watching our home pouring black smoke from the windows and sunroom and the Auburn Fire Dept. heading into the house and thinking, “I want to do that.”  The process began about 7 years ago and I got away from that dream with the opening of the gym.  Well it’s back in the mix and I couldn’t be more excited. So, the big question – What does this mean for the gym? No big changes minus you won’t see me in the evenings for now on Monday nights.  Once Fire school starts you’ll see less of me on Tuesday & Thursday evenings. The gym will stay open or be affected by this change, if anything it’ll see big improvements.
  2. Our next New You Challenge begins the first week of August.  The “interviews” and ads will begin in the next week or so. As always, if you have friends or family interested in joining have them get in touch with me ASAP as I’d much rather bring on a referral from you all then a completely new person. Sooner the better with this guys.
  3. We had a coaches meeting a week ago and a lot of great topics were discussed. Many of you have brought up wanting to work on skills more, but still wanting to have plenty of strength and WOD’s in.  An hour isn’t enough time to do it all each day so what we’re going to start working on is our Movement Clinics which will focus specifically on certain movements and progressions.  Once we have this laid out we’ll post sign ups and cost for each class or a package of classes.  There will be a set amount of attendees allowed, but again we will have all the information for you late summer/early fall.
  4. This is our last month with Coach Keith which is a bitter/sweet situation.  I am very excited for Keith and Ang, as well as his business partner Aaron on opening up Rockingham CF in Londonderry.  However, when one door closes another opens and with the opening will come two new coaches here at CFAF.  Beginning of August our own Kelly Parker will be getting her CF-L1 and taking on classes after some shadowing.  Also, some of you have already met Adam Stankard who has done some shadowing already here.  Having Adam and Kelly will open up more opportunities for not only class times, class coverage, but also clinics and so on.

CFAF is on a hot streak right now and we don’t have any plans on slowing down.  Keep putting the work folks and trust the process.




May Athlete Spotlight: Michelle Ortiz

May Athlete in Spotlight: Michelle Ortiz

Michelle started with us in June of 2016 looking for something new for her workout routine.  Like many of us, she was bored with what she was doing and was looking for a new challenge.  Both Michelle and her good friend Yanira joined up after completing their elements program and routinely come in 4-5 days a week to the 4:30pm class.  For a long time the weights on the bar stayed the same as, in my opinion, she wasn’t confident going heavier not only in WOD’s but on strength days.  January 2017 hit and something in her head must have awoken because sine the new year she’s been ripping through barbell.  She decided to sign up for the Blizzard Beatdown, our annual winter in house competition, though hesitant as she wasn’t sure she was the “competitor type.”  I assured her she was ready and that she could definitely hold her own on the competition floor.  See, I had been watching Michelle slowly grow as a CrossFit athlete and knew she was ready to break out.  The in house competition came and boy did she make a BOOM within our community.  She PR’d her Snatch that day at 95#, then kicked butt in WOD’s #2 and #3 for her team.  Since then she’s been on a mission: don’t settle! Each day she comes in she tries to push herself more and more chopping down progressions on her way to achieving new heights within her fitness journey.  Michelle keep dreaming big and keep plugging away at your goals.  The sky’s the limit for you!

Get to know Michelle!

  • How long have you been doing CrossFit at CFAF?
  • Almost 1-year
  • What’s your favorite move and/or WOD?
  • Snatches
  • What’s your least favorite move/and or WOD?
  • Burpees, well it’s a love/hate with those.  I hate them but love the way I feel when they’re done.
  • What’s one piece of advice you would give someone nervous about doing CrossFit?
  • Just try it out, it’s not what you think it is!
  • Favorite Movie/Tv Show?
  • The Walking Dead
  • Favorite “cheat” meal/food?
  • Chinese Food
  • If you could have one super power what would it be?
  • I’d want to Fly
  • If you could be any animal what would you be and why?
  • A Tiger, because they’re tough. 
  • What’s your #1 goal here at CFAF?
  • To be powerful and strong like Katrin Davidsdottir! 

March Athlete Spotlight: Carolyn Hardt

March Athlete Spotlight: Carolyn Hardt

When Carolyn first started with us 20 months ago she was looking for something to supplement her running, specifically marathon training. The main goal was to get stronger for the long race to improve her times and grind out the hills in the races.  During her elements classes we realized before we could really attack getting stronger we needed to improve her mobility not only in her ankles and hips but throughout her shoulders (loved those overhead lifts!).  Over the next year Carolyn approached each days training extremely intelligently by arriving early (when possible) to get warm and mobilize the various areas needing extra attention.  When I told her about needing to “wake up” her gluten and hips before squatting days she would add band steps and clam shells to her pre-WOD routine.  When she wanted to get stronger at pull ups she asked the coaches how to best utilize the progression charts.  Point here is she wanted to improve and made sure to put the work as much as she could.

Now 20 months in Carolyn has been completing many of the WOD’s and movements Rx’d here at CFAF.  She also registered and is participating in the CrossFit Open and has completed the first two WOD’s as Rx’d! Are all the mobility limitations resolved? No, but she continues to work them out pushing herself when able and holding back when her body (or coaches) say so. I personally have been extremely impressed the last few months especially with her determination and focus on the most important aspects of improving within CrossFit ~ improving her mobility.  That is the biggest reason for her improvements in WOD’s, with 1RM lifts and barbell movements and soon Rx’d gymnastics movements.  Great work Carolyn, keep it up!

Get to know Carolyn!

  • How long have you been doing CrossFit? – 20 months
  • What’s your favorite move and/or WOD? – Box Jumps & Cleans
  • What’s your least favorite move and/or WOD? = Overhead Squats & Wall Balls
  • What’s one piece of advice you would give someone nervous about doing CrossFit? – Anybody can do it regardless of your current fitness and abilities.  Everyone at CFAF are super supportive and it’s a lot of fun!
  • What’s your favorite movie? – Boondocks Saints or Jurassic Park
  • Favorite “cheat food”? – Reese’s Peanut Buttercups
  • If you could have one super power what would it be? – Fly, ’cause it looks cool and I wouldn’t be scared of heights.
  • If you could be any animal, which would it be and why? – Hummingbird, because it can fly and I can’t think of any predators that go after it. How can you not like a hummingbird?
  • What’s your #1 goal here at CFAF? – Be able to complete the WOD’s Rx and to keep having fun.

The Open: Everything you need to know

The CrossFit Open 2017

Over the last few weeks many, if not all of you have heard myself and the other coaches talking about “The Open” and our Friday schedule change.  I know there has been some confusion on what it is, class times and heats, the workouts, and everything in between.  Hopefully this post will clear the air for you all.

What is the CrossFit Open?

The Open is the first stage of the CrossFit Games competition season.  For a very, very select few this is the their roads to the Games this summer. For the rest of us this is a great way to gauge a few things:

  1. How are fitness has improved in the last year. For many that means have we improved on our weaknesses? Can we do Muscle Ups or HSPU? Have I/we learned to breathe while under tension and stress? Can I pace myself while pushing myself through a tough WOD?
  2. Has the programming at the box reached it’s goal of improving my fitness.  Basically, do I know what I’m doing and are you becoming more fit because of it.
  3. How do I stack up worldwide, in the Northeast Region, in the state of NH, in my age group, or even just in our box!  You can set up personal leaderboards however way you want to see where you stack up in almost any category or scenario (CF related) you can come up with.
  4. What will we have to work on for next year? What WOD’s will Dave Castro (Director of CrossFit Games) release that expose my weaknesses….?

For the next 5 – weeks at 8pm on Thursday night go to the CrossFit YouTube channel to see the Live announcements for each weeks Open WOD.  Here they will have Games level athletes perform the WOD on short notice immediately after announcing the WOD.  As soon as the WOD is announced and all the details are released I’ll post WOD times for the PM on Friday.

“Friday Night Lights”

Every Friday night we will host “Friday Night Lights” which basically instead of set class times at 430pm, 530pm, and 630pm we will have set heat times for the WOD to start.  Like I mentioned, as soon as I have all the details and can figure out logistics for set up and equipment I’ll post on FB (in the CFAF private group) heat times and available spots.  It’ll be a first come first serve basis so you’ll want to sign up ASAP if you are on a time restriction.  You can also let me know ahead of time when you can get to the gym by and when you have to leave by and I will add you to a spot first.

“Mat, what if I don’t sign up online for the Open? Can I still workout Friday afternoon?”

– YES! We encourage everyone to come in Friday afternoon to WOD and experience the energy the Open brings.  However the set up will be different.  Along with having to sign up for a heat time you will also have to warm up more on your own.  The coaches will be here and can help as long as we are not judging or working out, but we will have everything posted up for you to follow either way.

“Do I sign up for heats on Triib?” 

-NO! They won’t be posted on Triib, only on the private CFAF FB group.  If you’re not in there let me know and either Sue or I will add you.

“What if I can’t do the Rx or even the Scaled options for the Open WOD?” 

-If you didn’t register through www.games.crossfit.com for the Open ($20 fee) and you’re doing it strictly because it’s programmed here on Fridays then no biggie. We can scale or modify it like we do with all WOD’s. Now if you did register on the games website then do as much as you can as it’s listed, we will record that score for you to submit then if you want to continue the WOD with a different scale option just to get your sweat on by all means rock and roll.

“Can I bring my friend to try a class during the Friday night Open WOD’s?”

-No.  Let’s save drop ins for another day as this is not a traditional set up.  They can come and watch and check it out though.

So now what? 

Do things the way you normally would every day this week and next.  However, Thursday after say 830pm go on FB in the private CFAF group and look for my post that shows the heat times and available spots.  In the comments section right what heat time you want to do and I’ll add you name to that heat.  On Friday come in 30min before your heat time (or earlier) and get ready with the warm up and mobility, then at your heat time – kick some ass!

Hopefully this helps at the least explain what “Friday Night Lights” is as well as how the schedule will be set up.  If you have any other questions don’t hesitate to ask myself or the other coaches.



February Athlete Spotlight: Scott Connatser

February Spotlight Athlete: Scott Connatser

Two years ago this past December was when I first met Scott.  He had come in for his first Elements class as a referral from co-worker and current CFAF stud Tucker Davis.  When I asked him what brought him in he said something along the lines of, “I want to lose weight and have more energy and Tucker says this is the place.” On our 2nd day we did a workout at the end of the elements class that looked like this:

  • 3RFT (10:00 Cap)
    • Row 250
    • 10 x Push Ups
    • 10 x Wall Balls

The other gentlemen in class finished in 4:00+/- and Scott, well he had a bit of a rough time unable to finish under the cap.  He shrugged it off and understood it happens and would continue to come in and complete the beginner’s course.  Fast forward to current time and Scott has blossomed into quite an athlete while training here at CFAF, and especially while working with Coach Paul Mulhern.  In the last year Scotts #’s have improved dramatically:

  • Back Squat = 315 (01/16) ~ 355 (current) = 40# improvement
  • Front Squat = 245 (01/16) ~ 305 (current) = 60# improvement
  • Snatch = 175 (01/16) ~ 205 (current) = 30# improvement
  • Clean = 255 (01/16) ~ 285 (current CFAF heaviest clean) = 30# improvement
  • Grace (30 C&J FT @135#) = 5:36 ~ Heavy Grace (30 C&J FT @155) 3:56

Those are just a few numbers to show his gainz in the last year.  On top of his progress in the gym, Scott is a great guy with a one of a kind sense of humor.  He has an adorable German Shepard named Jax and can usually be found post WOD “relaxing” on the bench behind the rig in “Scott’s Spot.” Lastly, if you’re ever in need of a good joke ask Scott, he’s got some classics….

Get to know Scott!

-How long have you been doing CrossFit for? – 2 years

-What’s your favorite move and/or WOD? – “Grace” & Clean & Jerks

-What’s your least favorite move and/or WOD? – Lunges

-What’s one piece of advice you would give someone nervous about doing CrossFit? – The community is friendly and welcoming.  No one is judging what you’re doing or lifting, everyone is more about your effort. 

-Favorite Movie? – Big Hero 6

-Favorite “cheat food”? – Pizza

-If you could be one superhero who would it be and why? – Spiderman, most relatable

-What’s your #1 goal here at CFAF?  – BEAT TUCKER!!



“Just the Tip” ~ February 170207

“Just the Tip” 

     In our first member tip I want to discuss something we have been training over the last few months – pacing & efficiency.  Though we have ALWAYS preached the importance of efficient movement it plays an even bigger role when trying to improve fitness as well as WOD scores.  When I first started with CrossFit I believed “intensity” just meant going as fast and as hard as you can.  As I have matured within CrossFit as a coach and athlete (not as a human, still a 15 year internally) I have realized that just trying to move faster doesn’t usually result in a better WOD score.  In fact, when I am more methodical and efficient with my movements and focus on breathing and pacing then I see my scores actually have improved dramatically. 

     The big question then is how do we improve our times without moving faster? Well, like I stated we need to be more efficient with the movements.  Efficiency can come from a few different approaches:

  1. Lowering the weight and focus 100% on technique. This goes for strength focused workouts as well as in the WOD.  Don’t get hung up on “Rx” or “Scaled”, ultimately that means nothing if we injury ourselves due to poor movements.
  2. Train & practice the movements.  For example, today’s WOD is “Diane” which is 21-15-9 of Deadlifts & HSPU.  Majority of the time people go out on the set of 21 Deadlifts fast because they are confident in the move and the weight. Then after the HSPU or scale, the set of 15 Deadlifts often is broken up into 2-3 sets and things start slowing dramatically.  Instead of this approach, during the “pre-WOD” set up do say 5 unbroken deadlifts and watch the clock to see how long it takes you.  Based off that time (if it’s a manageable speed) you should be able to determine how long each set of Deadlifts should take you.  If you do a Deadlift in 2 seconds vs. 1 second in the opening set that will save you energy in the next few rounds allowing for less rest ultimately resulting in a better WOD score.
  3. Set up a 30 – Minute Personal Training session with one of the coaches to go over movements efficiency on moves you feel you struggle with.  We have tons of drills and exercises to help with improvement your movements.

In closing, take a few minutes before the clock starts to game plan and review the game plan before 3-2-1-GO!  I know that we all want to get our sweat on and feel our lungs on fire after every workout, but that’s just not practical or smart training. Also, I know we all like PR’s and WOD improvements and nothing will trump efficient movement.

Stay Strong ,


January Athlete Spotlight: Lori Burdick

**This is a new monthly feature we will be adding in for a few reasons, one of which so everyone can get to know athlete from other class times. We went with this approach over the “Athlete of the Month” because that decision is always tough with so many people making monthly improvements. Enjoy!

January 2017 Athlete Spotlight ~ Lori Burdick!

Lori started with us here at CFAF back in early October, 2016 with our first installment of the 6-Week New You Challenge.  Like most in the group, she was quiet to start but quickly found her form and has had no problem speaking up when she needs too.  I remember after the first week of the challenge Lori came to me and said, “Hey I lost ‘X’ pounds!” Knowing that Lori has a lot of potential and some great goals ahead, I wanted her to be happy with her loss but at the same time not relax.  She’s a hard worker, and I intended on keeping her grinding with some extra motivation.  My reply went something like this, “That’s great and you should be very happy! Lets keep in mind the most amount of fat a person can lose in a given week is around 2.5#’s with the anything else most likely water weight.  Water weight is great to lose as well because that’s weight off our vital organs like the heart.  Be happy with the progress, but let’s keep fighting as we have bigger goals to reach.” She was not happy with that response.  It was a risk, and a risk I’d take again because every week moving forward the weight loss number she gave me grew, and grew, and grew all the way to 28#’s after the 6-Weeks which is remarkable. At the end of the challenge she said, “Hey Mat, I’m down 28#’s and you can bet your ass it isn’t water weight.” Laughing, I said, “Your damn right girl, and you worked hard for all of that.  You should be damn proud of that accomplishment.” We all have great stories of where we started and where we are at now, here’s just one of the many you’ll read about moving forward.

Get to know Lori!

Name: Lori Burdick

How long have you been doing CrossFit for? – 13 weeks

What’s your favorite move and/or WOD? – the Deadlift, any WOD’s with Deadlifts I like

What’s your least favorite one and/or WOD? – Box Jumps

What’s one piece of advice you would give someone nervous about doing CrossFit? – It’s a family here so don’t worry, they’ll take care of you.

Favorite Movie? – Top Gun (great choice)

Favorite “cheat food”? – Cheese

If you could have on super power what would it be? – To be invisible when I needed to be

What’s your #1 goal here at CFAF? – to get strong

“OOOOO we’re half way there!”

Good Afternoon Athletes!

So we are juuuuuuuust about half way through 2016 and so far it’s been quite a year! We have so many new faces in the gym, and unfortunately have had to say bye-bye to some familiar ones too.  For many of us 2016 started off with a BANG jumping right into our nutrition challenge which yielded some amazing results for all those that stuck through it for 45 days.  Before, during, and right after the challenge we all had some great goals we were working towards and were feeling very confident that we would achieve them.  I know for myself, I have made some progress but not the kind I would have hoped for in 6 months.  How about you?


Do you feel like you’re still on the right path to achieving your 2016 health and fitness goals?

Are you still tracking your food and logging all workout results?

Still taking Fish Oil?

20min of mobility a day?

I’m guessing many of you answered “NO” to one of these questions.  It happens to us all, and we all have our excuses.  Some of them are valid, but most are not.  Lets be honest here, we all have fallen victim to the lazy or ‘comfortable’ demons here or there and it has probably been the reason we’re still in the same position we were back on January 1st.  So what do we do? Do we accept it and come up with more excuses to not get into the gym? Do we just say, “Well it’s summer and it’s harder to eat healthy at BBQ’s because no else does.”? Are we going to allow others dictate our health or let the fact that it takes hard work and dedication to achieve results, push us away from even trying?

I know I’m not giving up.  I know my wife isn’t giving up.  We are restructuring our food, our time, and our priorities to improve our health and fitness, not just for us, but for the two big head turkeys we have to run around after.  We want them to see the importance from a young age so it’s easier for them as they get older.  We are going to continue to be there to support each other, even when cookies are the only thing I/we want at that moment.

Wyatt and Owen, the not so little Cote boys!

Wyatt and Owen, the not so little Cote boys!

What’s your plan?

If you’re thinking to yourself, “I don’t know. I don’t know who can be my support system or where to even start making changes.” Then message me or talk to me next time you’re in.  I’m not waiting until “after the holidays” to get in shape and get my food back to where it needs to be.  It starts now and there is no end date in sight.  You all pay premium cost to workout at CFAF.  Don’t make the 1 hour you’re here the only healthy hour of your day.  Ask myself or the coaches for help and guidance to get you back on track.  Many of you that participated in the Nutrition challenge still have PT Sessions that you haven’t used, maybe now is the time to cash in.

Again, what’s your plan?