80/100. Veterans Day “CHAD”. Open Gym. Blue Zone. Cartlidge Rebuild? Good & Bad Science.

Anja, Christine, Mick and Marcy knocked out another Deka Race this weekend! #diablostrong

“When Americans lend a hand to one another, nothing is impossible. We’re not about what happened on 9/11. We’re about what happened on 9/12.”
—Jeff Parness

Tomorrow Diablo honors those who gave their lives in the tragedy of September 11, 2001 with our “9/11 Workout” created by Jamie Lee, PRsAllDay.

80 FOR 100  When I started CrossFit back in ’04, I struggled to keep up with the intensity. Despite many years of various forms of exercise, I was still crushed by the difficulty and intensity of CrossFit workouts. My stubborn attitude and competitive nature kept me going. And, I felt like I was getting more fit than I’d ever been in my life.

Despite the benefits of CrossFit, I wasn’t sure I could remain mentally committed to the process, until I read a comment from another athlete on post on the CrossFit daily blog. I think her name was “Kelly” – and she was a competitive Kettlebell athlete (yes, that’s a thing and it’s pretty damn hard: KB Jerks and KB snatch). In the blog post comments Kelly discussed her CrossFit training: 80-85% effort until competition, then a 100% effort for her KB competitions. Her reasoning was sound: training at the 80-85% level kept her healthy, very fit and more engaged in her effort. The 100% effort took everything out of her, and thus was reserved for competition.

The “80%” rule has stuck with me since then. And it helps to keep my training more enjoyable and, injury free – especially as I age. So how do you train at the 80-85% range in a metcon? I think it begins in the first round: 

  • Put the imaginary blinders on (stay focused on you, not others around you)
  • Scale if needed to insure virtuosity of movement – “Rx” doesn’t do anything for you if you move like crap
  • Move with purpose and a focus on virtuosity, ie., full range of motion with proper technique. Efficient movement trumps inefficient speed in the long run.
  • Build your pace as you feel more confident – often you’ll move much faster than you thought you could. Save some gas for the last minute(s) and then give it all you got.
  • If you’re just getting started with CrossFit, take breaks as needed! Intensity does not have to be sustained from start to finish. You’re doing more than you’ve ever done physically and it takes time to acclimate.  

Become great at the 80% and you’ll have what it takes when you need to give 100%. And, you’ll enjoy the process, injury free. 

VETERANS DAY HERO WORKOUT: “CHAD” – On November 11th, Diablo CrossFit will join the CrossFit & GoRuck communities to do the Hero Workout: “Chad”.  Chad Wilkinson, a Navy SEAL, died by suicide on Oct. 29, 2018, due to the effects of numerous deployments, several TBIs, blast-wave injuries, and PTSD. Wilkinson left behind a wife, two kids, and countless other friends and family members.

Since her husband’s death, Sara Wilkinson, a long-time member of the CrossFit community and trainer on CrossFit’s Seminar Staff, has been promoting awareness around veteran suicide and prevention through her nonprofit, The Step Up Foundation.

The workout is a brutal test: 1000 Step Ups to a 20″ box with a #35/45 vest or ruck sack.  Of course, we will offer multiple scaling and “partner” options to complete this workout.

Starting this week, PRsAllDay will offer accessory training workouts for our members to help prepare for this extraordinary workout. 1000 step-ups is challenging enough. With a load, 1000 step-ups can be brutally hard. Our accessory training will help get you ready. Stay tuned to Sugarwod for more details.

OPEN GYM: FIRST COME / FIRST SERVE: Starting Monday, Open Gym times will be posted in large time blocks. If you plan to train in the Open Gym Front or Strong Rooms, please check in on your Diablo app.
There are no reserved spaces. Come in, find a spot, train.

If you’ve already checked into a CrossFit or Strong class, you do not need to check into Open Gym to do accessory work.  Please limit training sessions to 2 hours max. Teen, Strong & Private Coaching have priority.

VANITY ROOM CLOSURE!  The Vanity Room is closed this week beginning Monday at 7AM in order to install plumbing for a washer/dryer (towel service). 

COMEBACK CLINIC: SAT, SEP 16 – 2PM – Our 2 hour “Re-Start Clinic” is the perfect refresher!  Interested? Email us: info@diablocrossfit.com!

BAR MUSCLE UP SKILLZ:  (register on the Diablo App or stop by the front desk)

  • Sun, Sep 24, 1P: Bar Muscle Ups – Cole (THIS IS A DATE CHANGE!)


YEAR END EVENTS – Mark Your Calendar!  (We have our sh*t together this year) 

  • Sat, Sep 30: Working With Large Body Athletes – CrossFit Coaching Certification
  • Oct 14 (Date Change): Fall Classic Olympic Lifting Competition 
  • Oct 28: Amazing Grace (Annual Charity Event at Diablo)
  • Nov 11: Veteran’s Day Hero Workout – CHAD
  • Nov 23: Turkey Ruck 2023
  • Dec 16: Annual Holiday Party (Back 40 BBQ)

TWEET OF THE WEEK:  The more you do CrossFit the more you see it as a solution to many of the world’s problems.”

Sep: Calendar & Newsletter.   This Week:


NETFLIX: Live to 100: Secrets of the Blue Zones – This is a very inspiring docuseries on Netflix. Author Dan Buettner wanted to find out why some people live longer lives – into their 100’s. He found five unique areas in the world that had a significantly higher average lifespan than the rest of the world. His findings are very interesting but not surprising. For example, people who live in cities or villages with elevation changes (hills) tend to live longer. People who eat fresh, whole foods (vs. processed foods) and move throughout the day, including compound movements (squats and lifts), also live longer. There are some incredible stories in this series.

IG POST / RESEARCH: Cartlidge does not undergo remodeling. New data show’s it’s all “wear and tear”.  Admittedly, I was disappointed to read this, but also not surprised. A friend once told me: “your knees only have so many miles”.. he was kinda right. The WodScience guys did a review of a couple of research studies that show that exercise does not remodel cartilage (or only sightly). 

PODCAST:  Good vs. Bad Science – Peter Attia, MD & Bob Kaplan, Professor, Stanford School of Medicine. I LOVED THIS ONE because research studies and their results are often grossly misused, misquoted, misinterpreted and misunderstood by media, social media and our Government. And, given the incredible volume of published research over the last 20 years, there are multitudes of gross errors and fabrications. Peter and Bob Kaplan dive deep into:

  • Study type definitions & how studies progresses from idea to execution
  • How to identify study strengths and limitations
  • Clinical trials, including biases and common pitfalls
  • They dig into key factors that contribute to the rigor (or lack thereof) of an experiment
  • They define P values and how to measure effect size, differentiate relative risk from absolute risk and what it really means when a study is “statistically significant.”

Make it an awesome week!