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bethnal green E2 - CrossFit London

Gymnastic Skills Clinic for Crossfitters

There are several tricky gymnastic based moves in Crossfit that you  need to get:

Muscle ups
Handstand push ups
Kipping and Toes to bar

There is a fantastic opportunity, this Saturday,  at Crossfit London in Bethnal Green E2, to have some expert tuition from some of Crossfit London’s top coaches. They will either help you nail these skills, or help you lay the foundations for those drills and practices that will mean you’ll be “kipping and Stuff” in the near future.

Crossfit Kids in Bethnal Green E2

Bethnal Green is the place to be! Especially if you want your kids to develop as awesome people. We have a fabulous weekly class where kids aged 8-14 learn a stack of essential cool skills such as weightlifting, powerlifting, and strength gymnastics. Quickly we include these skills in workouts that build their  cardio vascular and endurance capacity .

Recently we asked one of the parents what they liked about the sessions. Surprisingly they didn’t obsess about how good their child’s deadlift was, or how fast their child’s 400m was or how well they rowed or how many pull ups, handstand walks and ring dips their child could now do do.

They sent us this statement.  They  pointed out this statement  wasn’t original and had been  taken from a post they had seen somewhere, but it  summed up how they felt about what their child was actually doing.

“I don’t pay for my children to  do Crossfit . Personally, I couldn’t care less  about what sporting or physical activity they do.

– I pay for those moments when my kids become so tired they want to quit but don’t.

– I pay for those days when my kids come home from school and are “too tired” to go to their training, but they go anyway.

– I pay for my kids to learn to be disciplined, focused and dedicated.

– I pay for my kids to learn to take care of their body and equipment.

– I pay for my kids to learn to work with others and to be good team mates, gracious in defeat and humble in success.

– I pay for my kids to learn to deal with disappointment, when they don’t get that placing or title they’d hoped for, but still they go back week after week giving it their best shot.

– I pay for my kids to learn to make and accomplish goals.

– I pay for my kids to respect, not only themselves, but other  trainees, officials and coaches.

– I pay for my kids to learn that it takes hours and hours, years and years of hard work and practice to create a champion and that success does not happen overnight.

– I pay for my kids to be proud of small achievements, and to work towards long term goals.

– I pay for the opportunity my kids have and will have to make life-long friendships, create lifelong memories, to be as proud of their achievements as I am.

– I pay so that my kids can be  in the gym instead of in front of a screen…

…I could go on but, to be short, I don’t pay for Crossfit ; I pay for the opportunities that Crossfit  provides my kids with to develop attributes that will serve them well throughout their lives and give them the opportunity to bless the lives of others. From what I have seen so far I think it is a great investment!”

Ww did some googling and found that this has been posted on the internet in other forms, but  no one knows who originally wrote it, but its great.

So with that bit of inspiration chiming in your soul, why not  drop  our  kids co-ordinator  an email and see if you can bring your child down for a chat, an interview and  a look around. There is some more information here

Squat clean problems? Its just like pulling people at parties!

Crossfit london In Bethnal Green E2 is famous for many, many things. The 1st ever British Crossfit affiliate, the 9th affiliate in the world, amazing olympic weightlifting classes, the best Crossfit beginner introduction process, its amazing clients, its fantastic coaches ( blah, blah, ). Its also famous for its  drill by drill instructional system and its use of allegory and metaphor to help people learn stuff!

The reality is that experiences in one part of your life, can often help elsewhere!

In other words, it’s possible to argue that the Olympic Lifts are wholly informed by your romantic, and for that matter, your pick up ability at parties.

The job of the  squat clean is to lift the bar to the correct height, no more and no less, then get underneath it.

Which is exactly like picking people up at parties

Have you ever met someone at a party and absolutely nailed it in the first few sentences?  Have you had one of those moments when you could literally have said “get your coat, you’ve pulled”, and got away with it?

Well done, but be honest,  you probably continued talking and  screwed it up.

Who hasn’t successfully hit on someone in a party  then proceeded to talk their way out of  what would have been a perfectly decent shag?

We’ve all been there.

And its the same with the  squat clean..

All you need to do is  A) pull the bar B) tell it  to “get your coat””  then  C) get under it . You have to ( and I mean , “HAVE TO” ) bring your hips all the way in. But, do you need to continue to pull? Do your arms  really need to tug it up further? Do you need that big  upward shoulder shrug… does the bar need to go sailing up past your chin to the moon before you decide you need to be going down the other way, and fast.

Once the bar is up by your chin in the pull, it’s too late. By this time the bar has thought better of it, it needs to think about things a bit.  Now it needs to check with a friend or wash its hair, or get a taxi home, and voila, there you are left all alone.

No PB for you tonight.

I mean that dents your pride and your ego.

I’ll forgo the shag, but to miss a clean . Ow!

Take home message, don’t overpull

Crossfit London: finding a great community.

If you have come to London, and are living near Bethnal Green E2, and you are feeling lonely, that means only one thing.

You haven’t joined Crossfit London yet.

For over a decade, Crossfit London in Bethnal Green E2 has been using community to drive the performance of its athletes. There is something about sharing your training time with motivated and committed athletes that drives your own performance.

You can jog on your own, and do yoga in your lonely bedroom. You can find a dirt cheap gym and have a relationship with a bicep curling machine, or you can decide to let your awesomeness show by training with us.

We will teach you lots and lots of cool stuff. We will  show you how to lift loads safely and effectively while boosting your metabolic capacity (your ability to run, row, bike). We will kick open the doorway to basic gymnastics and teach you how to push up, pull up, dip and handstand. There is a world of cool things in our syllabus that will engage and support you.

We will make you stronger faster and more skilled than you have ever been. You’ll also meet the nicest group of people in the world, who will support and clap and cheer and high five you as you improve. But, there is no such thing as a free lunch: you’ll have to support and cheer and high five others to help them along too.

Unfortunately, at the end of  some of our classes, you may be forced to hold a silly pose.

Oh well!

Crossfit london: The pursuit of physical excellence within a supportive community

The free shoulder flexibility course

Are you worried about your shoulder flexibility? Well, you are in good company! Many people are in the same boat. Too much hunching over computers and way, way too much texting means your chest is tight, your back is weak and your shoulder “don’t look pretty”.

At Crossfit London, we have years of teaching the Olympic Lifts and Adult Gymnastics to normal members of  the public, so we have developed  (and , to be frank, stolen) all the tricks to help you get a better shoulder position.

Whilst we cannot reproduce, in a single blog post, all of our sneaky shoulder flexibility developing drills and skills ( you have to jump into our classes or get a fabulous personal training session) here are some great drills to begin with.

Its our gift to you

Enjoy

Shoulder warm up

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5jP02Bf7WBU&t=54s

Dislocations

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=si9uzGEiCic&t=18s

Shoulder stretch

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1yLWpWSgAaE

Strength

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=REjV2alcRcY

If you find your progress isn’t as great as you had hoped for, or you want help before you start, and on going support,  do book in for a PT, get  a session with one of our therapists or check out our mobility and flexibility classes

Crossfit London is based in Bethnal Green London E2. It was the first ever Crossfit facility in the UK, and remains the biggest Crossfit Gym in London, Its facilities are both gorgeous and stunning

Why Vegans Are Healthier

I’ve neglected this topic for quite a while, but like a combustion engine, the steam is starting to arise as we see diet tribes form, and an abundance of misinformation spouted from our vegan friends. Now, my issue isn’t with vegans themselves, I sincerely respect ones decision not to contribute to suffering and all of the ethical reasons behind avoiding animal products.

 

And I get it, the images of veganism are appealing. Eating closer to nature, fresh fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds, fermented this, activated that, on top of that you get to call yourself “plant based” which just feels awesome. Then you’re not eating those “dead caucuses,” those “rotting animals.” Throw on top of this the tribe that will take you in, and the reinforcement from the newsgrab that says that “study says vegans live 10 years longer than meat eaters” or virtually any line from What the Health.
That last part is the reason for this article. No, it’s not about the many health benefits of eating meat, it’s instead about the headlines surrounding health in general, and a phenomenon in research known as the healthy user bias.  
What is it?
The healthy user bias is a term used in research to explain that people who engage in one behaviour that is perceived as healthy are more likely to engage in other behaviours that are healthy. For example, those who are exercise and more likely to eat healthily. Conversely, those who smoke cigarettes are more likely to drink alcohol.
Another example is with a vegetarian diet. Typically, vegetarians are going to be more health – conscious… They drink less alcohol, are unlikely to smoke, and exercise more (14). You see this in real life as well…  One doesn’t just “go” vegetarian, it’s usually thrown in with a yoga membership and some more health conscious decisions. Now, throw a population based study of over 10,000 people together, and the vegetarians are likely going to come up much healthier than their meat eating mates. So was it the kale? Was it the yoga? Was it the positive emotions that went along with avoiding meat? We don’t really know.

 

But that doesn’t stop the headlines of course… Check this one out:

“Vegans Live Longer Than Those Who Eat Meat or Eggs, Research finds” (that’s an actual headline)

Screen Shot 2018-05-31 at 2.51.43 pm

What we perceive: Meat bad, vegan good.Now, digging past the headline we find that this study documented 130, 000 people over 30 years, and divided them up into meat eating and non – meat eating groups. The results of the study found that meat eaters had higher death rates than non meat eaters, so the conclusion that the media drew is that red meat causes an early death, and veggies cause a long life.

 

Now right here, the damage is done. The brain loves confirmation bias, and even when you know there’s probably more to the story, the message has gotten through and we start to form those connections between meat and disease. 

 

 

What there’s no discussion of is the healthy user bias. There’s no mention of vegan folk being more likely to exercise, get eight hours of sleep, and eat non processed foods. There’s also no mention of meat eaters being MORE likely to smoke, drink alcohol, and eat more processed foods. It doesn’t make the study obsolete, but there should be questions asked rather than conclusions made.

 

So the question then becomes, “how do we control these variables and really work out if a vegan diet really does lead to longer lifespans?” Well, it’s difficult, but researchers really do try to minimise the effect of the healthy user bias. 

 

One savvy study looked at people who shopped at health food stores. And I’m not talking about the joint where old mate gets his pre workout from, I’m talking about the ones with “organic, free range, and bio dynamic” splattered around the place. The same meat and non meat eaters were divided up, and this time there was no significant difference in all cause mortality between vegetarian and omnivore groups. Does this mean an all meat diet is healthier? No, it just means that we need to keep experimenting and asking questions.

 

So what can we agree on?

There’s so much divide and tribalism in nutrition, but most things would be agreed upon by all parties. Here’s what we can do to be a healthy user:

 

Avoid processed meats. Despite many studies weighing them equally, we can all agree that hot dogs from the supermarket are not in the same category as a grass fed steak. Processed meats are low in nutrients, high in calories, and seem to have correlations with certain cancers (though this is not settled).
Avoid char grilling your meats. When we char the hell out of our steak, we’re not only losing out on taste, we’re also cooking up some unhealthy chemicals. Heterocyclic amines (HCAs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are formed when we overdo out meats, and they seem to change DNA that can cause cancer. More on that here.

 

Eat vegetables at every meal. This is a great goal to have. There are some exceptions with certain microbiome conditions, but on the whole, eating vegetables gives you a stack of vitamins, minerals and a whole bunch of funky compounds that are super healthy.

 

Eat a variety of high quality meats: It gets a bad wrap, but meat is actually packed with quality nutrients. CoQ10, zinc, b vitamins, choline, and certain amino acids are all things you can ONLY find in sufficient quantities in meat. This is without mentioning the protein factor, which shows up time and time again as one of the most important factors in keeping healthy. 

 

Avoid Big Agriculture and Eat Local: Local is the new organic. It’s like organic but without the fancy tagline. I recommend buying meat from farmers you know and trust. You’re supporting a thriving, sustainable practice and getting a whole lotta health to go with it.

 

Sun, Sleep and Socialisation: No topic of health deserves mention without considering the three S’s…. It’s like Paleo 2.0. These three factors will help you feel better than any diet will, so let’s get our priorities right before we start dividing ourselves.

Thank you for reading.

*Disclaimer: This post is for information purposes only, and is not designed to diagnose or treat any disease. Always seek help from a medical professional whenever you undergo any dietary change.

References:

Burkert et al. The association between eating behaviours and various health parameters. 
http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article/file?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0088278&type=printable 
Baines, Powers, Brown. (2007). How does the health and well-being of young Australian vegetarian and semi-vegetarian women compare with non-vegetarians?https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17411462/

Key et al. (1996). Dietary habits and mortality in 11,000 vegetarians and health conscious people: results of a 17 year follow up. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8842068

Member of the Week: 20 May 2018

This week’s  Crossfit London Member of the Week goes to:

Iringo Demeter.

Iringo is a relatively new joiner who has discovered a love/hate relationship with CrossFit. I’ve had numerous conversations with Iringo during her lunchtime sessions and her evolution is heart warming to say the least. Iringo started from zero and when I say zero, I mean zero! Going from no exercise to speak of to high intensity CrossFit workouts is daunting to say the least. However, we always scaled workouts and intensity to her level and Iringo instantly fell in love with that post workout feeling. An enduring memory of mine from a few weeks back was when she exclaimed after a workout: “THAT WAS TERRIBLE BUT IT WAS FU£!&*~ AMAZING!!”. Iringo’s lifting, movement, and base conditioning have improved exponentially over the past few months and although we have only started this journey, I’m excited to see where it leads.
Well done Iringo!

 

Looking to start with CrossFit London UK in Bethnal Green, London E2?
Check out our fundamentals process. The ideal way for a beginner to start.
If you have any other questions then you should be able to find the answers on the website but if you’re still stuck you can email me here.

I don't want to do that, it's too hard!


I don’t want to do that, it’s too hard!
Whenever we face something we’ve never done before, that’s often the response we get in our heads.
This is our comfort zone.
After all, who doesn’t like to be comforfable? This is an instinct that has been wired into.our brains to fullfil the human body’s one purposes – to stay alive.
Trouble is, being comfortable doesn’t get us great abs, PBs and cool gymnastics pictures for our Insta account.

The fun stuff is OUTSIDE our comfort zones. So to be better in ourselves, we need to Get Comfortable Being Uncomfortable.  And reap the rewards of more confidence, pride and a shot of adrenaline that gets us hungry for more.
So how do we get to that place of Euphoria when we have to climb a mountain first and where we are is actually pretty cosy and comforting thank-you-very-much?
First step is to start small. One of the last articles on scaling will help with this.

Find someone who knows what they are doing to support you, such as a Crossfit coach or gymnastics instructor. They can guide you through, give you tips and they will keep you from doing anything stupid.
The key is to test your limits but not go outside of them – no prizes for jumping out of an airplane without a parachute.

Finally, learn to enjoy that butterfly feeling when you’re treading into the unknown. The more you anticipate it as the next step, going upside down or bringing a heavy bar over your head will be all part of the fun of it.
For more chances to break out of your comfort zone and get the flexibility you need to do so, jump into one of our flexibility classes.
Or, if you want to get flexible quicker or avoid pain and injuries, try a 1-1 by booking a free session here.
 
Felix
Flexibility Instructor, Crossfit London, Bethnal Green E2

Member of the Week: 25 March 2018

This week’s  Crossfit London Member of the Week goes to

Theo Dimopoulos

Theo is a rare breed at CFL in Bethnal Green E2, considered equally as part of the morning crew as much as he is the evening. Theo trains regularly and is always someone I’d look to have in one of my classes due to his bubbly personality. While I’d consider him a bit of a troublemaker, it’s not in a bad way. His cheeky humour adds to the fun and is not disruptive at all. Theo is easily coachable and always on hand to help others too which is invaluable with a packed class.
Συγχαρητήρια Theo!

Strongman Conditioning

IMG_2125
CrossFit London has one of the longest running and best equipped Strongman classes in London. You’ll be hard pressed to find another facility that has atlas stones, sleds, prowlers, axle bars, logs, handles, kegs, T-bars and ropes all under one roof, and then add to that all the usual CrossFit equipment to boot.
The problem, however, is that we make you jump through a lot of hoops before you’re able to participate (8 Level 1s in total!). Eight hours is a lot of investment of your time and money to be able to attend our Strongman classes.
IMG_8244Strongman in simple and we’d like to keep it that way: awkward objects, over distance, quickly. So we’ve decided to simplify the process.
First, we’ve done away with the Level 1.8, and instead will be incorporating fundamentals teaching into the classes.
We’re also getting rid of the “Level 2” label, which means you don’t need to be a CrossFitter (or complete our Level 1 classes) to join in. Just like MetCon, anyone can drop in and you can bring your friends to try out a class.
Finally, the name and format. In the new “Strongman Conditioning” classes, expect all the same awkward, gassy workouts (those who have done the CrossFit and Strongman beginners, may be able to go a bit heavier) but you’ll all be doing the same workout. You won’t find Olympic Lifting, high-level gymnastics IMG_7662or things which take a lot of drills before you start; that means classes will run faster, with more hard work crammed in.
You can join in the classes with Carolyn on Tuesday at 18:30 or Saturday at 11:30 with Kat. Any questions, feel free to e-mail: support@crossfitlondonuk.com.