October 5, 2012
October 10, 2012

Quite the weekend for CFDC! What with MC and Sebastian’s wedding and the Mid-Atlantic Hopper, CFDC people were spread all over the place. But a few events, no matter how special, don’t come between the DC-faithful and their Sunday class.  Many thanks to Coach Mike for stepping in and covering class. As fate would have it, class performed some solidarity front squats along with their CFDC Team members in Baltimore (more on that later).

5 x 5 Front Squats 

Class started off with three sets of 5 reps with the bar only to prepare for the day’s strength session, using the three initial sets to concentrate on form and control. After that, everyone worked their way up to a weight that was 65% of their max, and then began the days working sets: 5 sets of 5 reps each at between 65-85% of their max.

KB Swings and Push-Ups 

Following the front squats, racks and barbells were put away, and everyone grabbed themselves a KB for a quick and dirty met-con of swings and push-ups. Results as follows:


Mobility Work

Of course, one of the best things about having Mike lead class – besides his fantastic amount of Olympic lifting knowledge – is his passion and expertise on mobility and flexibility. As such, Mike closed out class with a dedicated mobility session focusing on the shoulders, trunk, and lower legs (who knew our calves were so damn tight!?!).

Meanwhile, in Baltimore, Tom A. and the CFDC Team were busy jamming through two days of endless barbell work during the 5th annual Hopper competition. With a mix of cleans, snatches, back squats, front squats, and overhead squats, a person could be forgiven for thinking CFDC spiked the hopper!

Tom A was at it again, tackling the Master’s division workouts like a machine. Tom has spent a lot of time working on his strength this year, and it showed as he manhandled the weights meted out to the masters. The final workout of the first day played right into Tom’s hand when it included two sets of 300m row, a paltry distance for the Hammer!

This year’s Hopper was an especially poignant one for CFDC’s team, which was an awesome mixture of new blood and seasoned veterans:

Chris O, who recently migrated to DC from NY, was a competition-virgin before the weekend, but handled it like an old pro, even finding a kipping rhythm for his toes-to-bar when it mattered most: in the midst of 600-rep team workout!


Sara K, who was forced to miss last year’s Hopper because of a wedding, made a stunning return this year and was thrown right into the fire when the very first workout called for two female athletes, and only two female athletes! Sara was rewarded for her efforts with a follow-up snatch workout later that day, which she proceeded to throw around like the bar was made from tinker-toys.


Mark M, who was on the very first CFDC team to compete at the Hopper three years ago also made a triumphant return this year. Despite dealing with a nagging injury, constant business travel, a move and an impending family addition, Mark made it look as if he had been doing nothing else but working out since the last Hopper, chewing through reps of power cleans at 135 and then doing a little trash talking when he finished a rep ahead of Coach Salty.


Julia L has been a mainstay of CFDC’s teams ever since she was drafted for the first Hopper team three years ago (with Mark and Sara), for which she was given three weeks of preparation (having never done CrossFit before that). Nevermind her impressive array of skills or her depth of strength and endurance, the best thing about having Julia on a team is her ability to giggle at any time, including smack in the middle of a snatch and sandbag-run workout (no, seriously, we have it on video…)


Coach “Salty” did everything possible to appease the Hopper-gods before the competition started, which apparently worked as they not only delivered an entire competition full of barbell work, but more importantly, one entirely devoid of double unders.

Last, but by no means least, CFDC was privileged to have Johanna M of CrossFit Dupont join them for this year’s team competition. Johanna’s first CrossFit competition was last year’s Hopper which she did with the CFDupont team after CrossFitting for only 3 months. To add to the emotion, Johanna is leaving DC at the end of this week, destined for Jackson-Hole, Wyoming. So this past weekend was truly to be a test of her growth before she departed. Just how did she do?
She stole the whole damn show!

Instead of failing to do the story proper justice by trying to write about it from our point of view, we’ll just let Johanna tell you all about what transpired during the final workout on Saturday with a cut-and-paste from today’s CFDupont post:

I didn’t think I could ever top last year’s emotions, but I did. This weekend at the 2012 Mid Atlantic Hopper I was on a euphoric high. Last year I made two goals to myself. One was to snatch 95#, (this was the team’s final weight challenge and I could barely snatch 65# at the time), two was to finish top 10.

Crossfit DC was nice enough to welcome me onto their team, and although we didn’t make top 10, we were damn close. Of course I was sweaty palms all weekend anticipating what the work outs would be, and of course they pull snatches 135 for men and 95 for women. “Oh god” I said, even though I have gotten stronger since last year my 1 rep max was 90# and I had to do 10 reps at 95#. With a lot of coaching and cheering, I flocking did all 10 reps. They weren’t pretty, but I did it. I’ve never been so proud of myself in my life, it beat my 15 pull ups last year by a long run.

It. Was. Awesome.
You’d have thought the CFDC team had just won the whole competition with the celebrating that ensued after that workout! and Speaking of CFDupont, congratulations to Devon D and Eric P for an awesome showing – the unicorn was definitely well represented!

A great deal of gratitude and kudos also belong to the master tactician and coach, Tom Brose, and the ever-present jack-of-all-trades, Stephanie L, who acted as part coach, part masseuse, part organizer, part coat tree, part referee, part food & water supplier, and full-time photographer. Also, special thanks to Katie Chase for making the trip up to BWI to cheer everyone on Saturday.

The competition bug has been circling the gym, and lucky for all of you, there’s more in store. Specifically, there are a lot of members in our gym who should be signed up for the NOVA Open Weightlifting meet being held on Saturday, October 27 at CrossFit South Arlington. Remember, Coach Mike will be the meet director for this competition, and considering the countless hours of help he puts into CFDC, the very least we can do is reward him with a substantial turn-out. If you think you aren’t ready, think again – we’ve been covering a lot of Olympic weightlifting recently, and all of us are primed to try out our new skills in a meet setting. If you have questions, or just want to see if you should consider it, please don’t hesitate to ask Tom, Chris or Mike. If you’ve just been dragging your feet, get on it!! Sign up and pay your entry fee, and then fill out the start-list information sheet.

Hope everyone enjoyed the long weekend (if you’re one of the lucky few who got a break), and we’ll see you all on Tuesday.



  1. TomandAmi says:

    It was a great showing all around for CFDC and its extedned family. Fun to have Chris O., Eric, and Johanna with the CFDC crew. I feel good about the weekend. In order fo importance I wanted to not get injured (check), finish all of the WODs (missed that one by 5 push ups on the 3rd WOD – I am too slow on the box jump), and complete the rep schemes unbroken (check except for the 30 FS at 115 – got 29 or 30 K2E so missed that by one actually one foot!) I feel like the strength gains were there and I am working more on the met cons. Next stop Super Fit. In between more work, more work. Thanks everyone.

  2. Steph says:

    Wow, I think this is the first time Tom A. has commented first on the blog! New PR, Tom! 😉

    What a great weekend of cheering on the CFDC and CFDupont peeps! I think I had as much fun as the competitors, minus the very very sore muscles. Congrats to all the competitors! Thanks for coming up to keep us company, Katie! It’s always fun to have you around! I am going through all the pictures and videos and will share them soon.

    Thanks Mike for coaching Sunday’s class. I might try to do that workout on Wednesday.

    Looking forward to class tomorrow!

  3. Katie says:

    Thanks, Coach Mike, for running Sunday’s class!

    I didn’t have a clue what my 1 RM front squat is, only that they’re hard for me. I guessed about 60#, so worked from 40# to 50#, dutifully trying to keep my chest and elbows up, no hips rising early. Jessi and Greg sped through their sets, ending at 125# — having seen the Hopper workout, coupled with Jessi so easily doing a set of 5 reps at 125#, I challenged her to a THROWDOWN! 3 reps at 135#. She only agreed if I added 10# and did 3 reps also. So, I put on bumper plates, fully expecting to bail, and then did my 3 reps at 60#! And then Jessi did her 3 reps at 135#! And then Greg did HIS 3 reps at 135#! Awesome!! So, now we know our 1 RM is more than that. :o) I stuck to light KB swings at 12 kilos, and enjoyed the nice quick metcon before mobility and some post-class pull-up negatives.

    I had a great time watching the Hopper on Saturday, and wished I could have seen the domination on the 200’s workout Sunday! I’m fairly certain Coach Salty pulled all the DUs out of the Hopper. There were some fantastic moments, particularly during the sandbag shuttle run/snatch workout. Julia was all concerned about the 60# sandbag ahead of time, then every time she threw it over her head like it was nothing! (perhaps her backpack weighs 60# normally?) Chris and Sara sprinted in from the shuttle run and Tom told them to take a few breaths before doing snatches — of course they didn’t; they went right to them and delivered picture-perfect form.

    But the absolute best was Johanna doing 95# snatches — just wow. She didn’t give herself enough credit. That girl is HARDCORE. The bar literally was coming down on her FACE and she managed to press it out and have the rep counted!! Truly awesome. Congratulations to everyone, including Tom A., on a fantastic showing! You all make me feel proud to be part of CFDC, and make me want to get my butt in the gym and train even harder.

  4. Steph says:

    And yay for no double unders!!

  5. Amelia says:

    Awesome to hear how the team and Tom A did! Congrats!

    See everyone tomorrow.

  6. Erica says:

    Unbelievable job guys! Seriously, sounds epic. (And seriously Chris, epic write-up and photo journalism at its best). Couldn’t be prouder of a more well-deserving group of people.

  7. Tom Brose says:

    I can’t say how proud of our crew I am. Great weekend, and awesome writeup.

    Big thanks to Mike, Steph and Katie for all the support, as well as the rest of the community for moral support.

    Congrats MC and SBV!

  8. Sara says:

    Congrats MC & SBV!

    Thank you to Tom A, Tom B, Chris S, Chris O, Julia, Mark, Johanna, Steph, Katie, Devon and Eric for an amazing weekend. So many great moments.

    Special thanks to Mike for taking over class while we were away.

  9. Like I said, what a weekend. I had a blast. Im sad to leave CFDC as well, if I was staying I’m pretty sure I would have made the transition to CFDC after CFDupont closed.

    You all are so knowledgeable and inspirational, it was the reason I succeeded this weekend.

    Best of luck to you all at the new gym, I know you guys are going to rock it. And don’t worry I’ll be stalking you on Facebook! If anyone heads to Jackson Hole for vacation don’t forget to holler at me!

  10. Julia says:

    Congrats SBV & MC! We missed you guys this weekend.

    Thank you coaches and team for a fantastic two days of competition. It was especially awesome throwing down with some new faces – Johanna was a total rockstar (how about scheduling your vacation and booking your ticket for next year’s Hopper?), and I lucked out getting Chris-NY as my sandbag/snatch partner. Great cheering on Devon and Eric as they put up some truly impressive performances. And thank you Katie (who at the 1+year mark now qualifies as a CFDC veteran) for making the trip out to support us!

  11. Dian says:

    Congratulations MC and SBV!

    Thanks for a great write-up on the events at the Hopper. I’m very proud to be associated with such kick ass people.

    I had a crazy Sunday morning and missed class as a result. I was so annoyed when I read that I missed front squats….again! I am so impressed with the front squat numbers. Way to go crew.

    I FINALLY got my ass to yoga this weekend to work on my flexibility issues. The classes were really challenging and engaging. I am looking forward to the progress I can make once I put in the work on the flexibility/mobility front.

    I did have a awesome dream on Sunday night that I was in the gym just cranking out heavy OHS. It was a shame to wake up from that.

    See everyone tonight.

  12. edgy reggie says:

    Even though I was physically not at this year’s Hopper, I was there in spirit. Congratulations to Team CrossFit DC, to Tom A., and to Devon and Eric for a job well done!

    Thanks to Coach Choizilla for coaching Sunday’s class. I really enjoyed it.

    Front squats: Overall, they felt good. After the warm-up sets, I started with 155# (my 65%) and increased the weight by five percent of my one-rep max (i.e., 70%, 75%, 80%, and 85%) until my final set was at 205#. Katie complemented me on my depth…so I know that I was doing something right.

    It was fun to see Katie pumped up about the Hopper and to have that energy and enthusiasm transfer to her workout. Her “smack talk” paid off as “Jazzy” Jessi, Greg, and she did another set of front squats and achieved new PRs (in the form of a three-rep max) in the process. Ahhhh…there’s nothing like peer pressure! 🙂

    Met-con: Short and to-the-point. I used the 28 kg kettlebell for the (American-style) swings.

    I liked the mobility session post-class. It was very useful, and it helped with my yoga later that evening.

    Everyone in Sunday’s class did great work. I would like to extend a “welcome to CrossFit DC” to Kim and James. I hope that both of you will continue to be a part of the CrossFit DC family.

  13. Mark Minukas says:

    Sebastian/MC congrats!

    Chris – great post. It was a ton of fun to compete this past weekend. CFDC set a high bar for camaraderie and PR’s!

  14. ppetersan says:

    what a great write up. It makes me feel like I was there. Great job, CFDC. Due to a sick kid, I wasn’t able to make it to the hopper or to class on Sunday – and probably won’t make it to class tonight. But hopefully I will see everyone on Thursday.

    Finally, Congrats to MC and SBV!