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Olympic Lifting at CrossFit Aspire

Posted on by Alycia

Yesterday, Justin and I lifted with Rizelyx Rivera, the National Record holder in the snatch, one of the two Olympic lifts.

She stood in front of us and watched us each perform the snatch, clean and jerk for over an hour. They were easily some of the best Olympic lifts we’ve ever performed. We were focused, tight, fast, and strong on every lift.

Why? Because the BEST person in the country at this lift was watching each lift, correcting our technique, and giving us advice.

It was mentally and physically exhausting to concentrate that hard on the details of the lifts. But wouldn’t you know it; we both picked up tips and technique corrections that helped us improve our form dramatically.

Why does this concern you?

Because she’s coming to CrossFit Aspire to teach YOU how to improve your Olympic Lifts with an intensive 2 day clinic, and a weekly Olympic lifting class.

TWO DAY CLINIC:
March 24th-25th
$95
Max attendance: 20 people.

This two day clinic will include a review and practice in the basics of the lifts, drills and skill movements, critique and practice in each lift, as well as training and skill development on the second day.

How to register: RSVP via the Online Calendar (CrossFit Aspire Members Only!). (Email me if you lost your password for our member website) You can charge the event cost to your account, or pay in cash before March 16th.

WEEKLY CLASSES:
Thursdays, 7:30pm
$30/month
Begins Thursday, March 29th

Rizelyx will also be coaching an hour and a half long Olympic lifting class each Thursday at 7:30pm. Weekly practice in the Olympic lifts is guaranteed to make you stronger, and a LOT more proficient at the lifts.

We are paying for this program as well, so that the cost stays low for our members. We recognize how fortunate we are to have this opportunity and we want to make sure that it’s not too prohibitive for those who really want the extra coaching from a world-class lifter.

Do I have to attend the clinic before starting the weekly classes? No, but it is highly recommended. That way, we’ll all be on the same page and the classes can focus more on refining technique, rather than learning the lift.

Can anyone attend the clinic? Yes. Lifters of all abilities/strengths/proficiencies can attend. The only pre-requisite is that you are interested in improving your performance in these lifts, and you are serious about making changes, even if it means going down in weight, tweaking your form, breaking old bad habits, etc.

I have more questions! Respond to this email or ask Alycia or Justin in class.

Rizelyx’s Bio:
Olympic weightlifter 2002- present.
Certified PersonalTtrainer by IFA 2005- present

Olympic weightlifting assistant coach 2005-2008 Olympic weightlifting coach 2009-present.
Assistant CrossFit coach 2009-2010

Junior National Champion and record holder in Puerto Rico. 2002-2008
Senior Sub National champion (as a Junior) in Puerto Rico 2004-2008
USA Sub National champion 2009-2010
USA National champion – best lifter 2011.
USA Snatch Record Holder 2011
One of the national team selected by the Olympic Games 2012

Team: East Coast Gold
Hometown: Salinas, PR
Current Residence: Moorestown, NJ

Weight class: 58kg
Height: 5’5″

Introduction into the sport:
My uncle Julio Martinez introduced me to the sport. He was a two time Olympian in Olympic weightlifting, and is currently the national coach at the Olympic training center in Puerto Rico.
Favorite Competition Lift: Snatch
Favorite Training Lift: Snatch blocks
Education:  Physical Education in Pontifical Catholic university of Puerto Rico 2005-2008.

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BIG EVENT ANNOUNCEMENT: ‘Practical Paleo’ Seminar!

Posted on by admin

CrossFit Aspire is hosting a BIG, IMPORTANT, ALL-ENCOMPASSING, MEGA-INFORMATIVE Nutrition Event on April 21st…and you are invited!

“Practical Paleo Seminar”
by Diane Sanfilippo, owner of Balanced Bites

Who is Diane?

Diane is a Certified Nutrition Consultant and a C.H.E.K Holistic Lifestyle Coach. She runs her own Nutritional consulting business, an informative website and blog, and an easy-to-follow-along Podcast with co-host  and Nutritional Therapy Practitioner Liz Wolfe of CaveGirlEats.com. Liz is also the Nutritional consultant for Steve’s Original PaleoKits.

Liz Wolfe will be a special guest at the Practical Paleo Seminar as well!

What is the Seminar all about?

This nutritional seminar will give you all of the information you need to know to be the healthiest you’ve ever been without restricting yourself or feeling like you are ‘on a diet’. You’ll learn about which foods are actually healthy (you’ll be surprised…and happy!), as well as the truth behind some very common nutritional myths regarding fat, cholesterol and whole grains.

You’ll also learn a lot about digestion, hormones and blood sugar regulation and how they play a critical role in your health and performance.

Why do I need to know this?

Because this is your life, and you only have one chance to make it the best it can possibly be. So many diseases, conditions, illnesses and general maladies that we accept as a natural part of aging can be avoided by feeding your body that natural things that it requires to run at it’s best.

Nutrition and sleep are just as important as your workout.  You can’t CrossFit your way through a bad diet and expect to come out healthy – instead, we recommend that our members take a holistic approach to address all aspects of physical health.

What types of people should attend this?

Those of you who eat food.

Those of you who love to cook, eat, and indulge in food.

Those who don’t know much about this whole “paleo” thing.

Those who know enough about eating real foods, but have trouble explaining it to others, or answering tough questions about the impact of real foods on your health, heart, etc.

Those who are interested in performing better in the gym.

Those who know that they need to make a big life change.

Those of you who are ‘addicted’ to certain foods.

Those of you that love to geek out about nutrition.

YOU

What are the details?

CrossFit Aspire
3 Larwin Road
Cherry Hill, NJ 08034
April 21st, 9-5 pm

The Practical Paleo seminar costs $95  $45if you sign up before April 8th, and includes a complimentary e-book written by Diane, as well as complimentary lunch provided by CrossFit Aspire.

$95 $45 for 8 hours worth of high level (yet understandable) nutrition advice, discussion, Q&A, case studies, etc) is a tremendous value.

REGISTRATION: Click here to register now! Space is limited, so please try to register before April to ensure that you can attend.

Our Next 30 Day Challenge!

Your next chance to step it up and eat 100% clean, with the support of over 100 people, online resources, cooking demo’s and parties, and more, begins on Sunday, April 22nd. For the 30 days following the seminar, you will work together with your gym friends and coaches to commit to 100% healthy eating. You will assess your gym performance (with a benchmark workout pre- and post-challenge), symptoms, body composition and overall health to see the immediate effects of treating your body well.
The 30 Day Challenge is completely optional – but really, who doesn’t want to look younger, feel better, and live longer?
More info on the challenge to follow.

For now,

Register Online

to reserve your spot! We are opening this up to all area CrossFit athletes, so please sign up soon to make sure you get in!

Posted in News & Events | 1 Comment

CrossFit Games 2012: The Open, The Regionals and The Games

Posted on by Alycia

The Annual CrossFit Games is upon us! Woo hoo!

PART 1:    The CrossFit Games Open:       Feb22nd – April 1

The CrossFit Games Open is a series of 5 workouts, each released to the public weekly, beginning on February 22nd. CrossFitters from around the world will be doing the SAME workout during the SAME week, and submitting their scores online. As more CrossFit athletes submit their scores, those who are participating have an increasingly accurate idea of who are the fittest men and women in the world.

Our gym (and just about every CrossFit gym in the world) is participating in the CrossFit Games Open. We will be doing the weekly workouts each FRIDAY (Feb 24, Mar 9, Mar 16, Mar 23, Mar 30) in all classes. The workout MAY including more technical movements than a regular workout at CrossFit Aspire, so scaling options will be available as always.

EVEN IF YOU ARE SCALING the workouts, you are HIGHLY encouraged to submit your scores online.

WHY? Entering the CrossFit Games Open is similar to entering a 5k race. Most people who run 5k races are casual runners, and about 90% of the runners aren’t expecting to win. They just simply want to do their sport, give themselves a reason to push a little harder during their run, and to see how they stack up against others.

CrossFit is your sport. And the Open is your 5k. Go ahead and sign up. It’s only a few bucks and all you have to do is spend about 30 seconds online each week uploading your scores.

Still aren’t convinced you should submit your scores online? Watch this 1 minute video from another CrossFit affiliate owner and his members.

TODAY:  CREATE A PROFILE. Click here to create your profile.

EVERY FRIDAY AFTER YOU DO THE WOD: Upload your scores (and include scaling info when necessary) to the Leaderboard on the CrossFit Games website.

 

PART 2:      The Regional Competition:      May 25-27 (Memorial Day Weekend)

The top 60 CrossFitters from the Northeast will be chosen to advance onto the Regional Competition at Reebok CrossFit 1 in Boston, Massachusetts. This is a weekend-long competition featuring some of the regions top athletes and teams. It’s an incredible event to witness, and we encourage anyone who is interested in the sport of CrossFit to attend.

*Justin and Alycia will be going to watch! If you plan on going, please comment here or tell Alycia or Justin. We will plan carpools and hotels.

PART 3:      The CrossFit Games:       July 13-15

The CrossFit Games are held at the Home Depot Center in Carson, CA. This 3 day epic event will feature multiple workouts per day, many of them announced just minutes before they begin, performed by the world’s most elite CrossFit athletes. Here you will see famous CrossFit athletes, CrossFit headquarters staff, a ton of vendors with the latest in CrossFit gear, and you will meet a bunch of amazing people.

Here is another 1 minute video for this year’s Games that shows some clips from last year’s competition. Can’t you feel that energy??!!

* Justin and Alycia will be attending. If you plan on going, please comment here or tell Alycia or Justin ASAP.

Posted in News & Events | 11 Comments

Top 10 Reasons You Should Run the Haddon Twp Turkey Trot

Posted on by Alycia

The Haddon Township Turkey Trot is an all-levels 5k (3.1 miles) road race that begins and ends at the Pour House on Haddon Ave. It’s at 9am on Saturday, November 26th.

Here’s the link to register.

Reasons you’ll want to run this one:

10. You haven’t run more than 400 meters at a time since you started CrossFit.

9. You know you can run 3 miles if you tried.

8. You are training for a marathon.

7. You want to be better at running.

6. You like supporting local events.

5. You like doing sports/activities with your friends from the gym.

4. You are competitive. (If you’re a decent runner, there’s a pretty good chance you’ll win your age group)

3. You will be awake anyway, with nothing else on your agenda.

2. You collect race t shirts. (this one’s long sleeved!)

1. You get to eat free eggs and bacon after the race with Alycia!

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2 Upcoming Events!

Posted on by Alycia

According to our survey results, you want to be involved in more CrossFit challenges and workouts with members of other gyms.

Well…good timing, because there are two coming up!

November 5th, CrossFit OTG in Williamstown, 8:30am – A workout challenge including 3 events, to be completed my individuals. $50 buy in. More info is here.

November 12th, CrossFit King Of Prussia -  A partner workout that is comprised of two CrossFit benchmark workouts – Helen and Grace. Free event.  More info is here.

We’ll post info for both events on the whiteboard. If you plan on attending either, write your name on the board so that we can work out carpools and info like that.

If you don’t feel like participating, but you want to come out and support, please also note that on the whiteboard. Simply attending a CrossFit competition can motivate you for months to come.

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Yoga: The CrossFit of Stretching

Posted on by Alycia

CrossFit Aspire is introducing Aspire Yoga – a twice weekly Yoga class for those of you who want to increase performance, mobility, and clear your head a little.

Some of you saw that and said, “Oh, cool”. The rest of you probably thought “Meh. Not for me”…..

BUT WAIT!

What you might be thinking:

“I don’t think I’d do well in a yoga class”
“Yoga sounds like too much work”
“Yoga is only for hippie women.”

“Yoga is for girls. It’s not a guy thing.”
“I don’t need yoga in my life to recover. I’m fine as is. So what if I can’t reach behind my back to get that itch, or bend down to tie my shoes, or catch a clean in a perfect front squat?”


NOW…. replace some of those words and see how funny it sounds.

” I don’t think I’d do well in CrossFit”
“CrossFit is too much work”
“CrossFit is for 20 yr olds that work out till they puke”
“CrossFit is for guys who are already strong. It’s not a girl thing.”
“I don’t need CrossFit to be stronger or faster. I’m fine as is. So what if I can’t pick up a heavy bag of dog food, or I can’t jog out to my mailbox and back?”

If you had a friend who said those things about CrossFit, you’d do all that you could to show her that she was wrong, correct?

Well, that’s what we’re doing here. Right Now. To You.

Consider this your intervention.

YOU NEED HELP.

You can’t get into a good overhead position without pain or significant ‘pain ball’/'foam rolling’/'band stretching’ beforehand.

I’ve seen you try to squat. It’s painful to watch. I can’t imagine how it must feel.

We’ve all witnessed your poor excuse for a push press.

AND WE’RE HERE TO HELP.

Aspire Yoga is a membership add-on that we are offering a ridiculously low price. Why? Because it’s that important. Yoga improves your discipline, body awareness, strength, mobility and reinforces proper movement patterns.

Here’s the Scoop

Start Date: Wednesday, November 2nd
Aspire Yoga will be offered a twice weekly:
WEDNESDAY 7:45pm
SATURDAY 11:15am
Pricing: $25/month for one weekly class or $40/month for two weekly classes. This is an add-on to your membership, and will be included in your monthly fee.

These prices just don’t exist anywhere else in the area. Jump on this before they go up in 2012.

ALSO,

These classes will also be open to the public, so tell your yoga-loving friends to get their supple butts into our gym!
Class prices for non-members will be $12 drop in fee, 5 classes for $54 or 10 classes for $100.

Wednesday classes will be taught by Laura Maron (wife of the lean and mean Jon Maron) and Saturday classes will be taught by Brianna O’Neal (a bad-ass CrossFit newbie who is poised to do big things). A full bio on them and description of their classes is coming soon. They each offer a different style of Yoga, so there is something for everyone!

We will have official sign-up sheets at the gym within the week, so you can easily add on Yoga to your membership beginning in November. If you signed up mid-month, and your monthly fee cycle is NOT on the 1st of the month, you can start with Yoga when your November membership begins, or you can start right away and just pay in cash for your first few classes until your November fee starts.

Questions? Email alycia@crossfitaspire.com or ask us in class!

Guys want to be him. Girls want to be with him. Matthew McConaughey does yoga. You should, too.

 

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Survey Says: 6 Improvements We are Making

Posted on by Alycia

Thank you for taking the time to fill it out with your thoughts and suggestions. The fact that you told us the good, the bad, and thought about improvements, shows that you care about the gym and our success in the future.

You spoke and we listened.

1.Schedule:

It seems as though the majority of people are relatively happy with the current schedule (which makes sense, since you joined the gym). Currently, we have availability to add 9am, 12:30pm (in November), and 4:30pm, but there weren’t quite enough responses to warrant the addition of a new class. If you absolutely can, and will, make it out to any of those class times during the week, post that to comment or email me. I’ll keep tally, as we’re willing to add the classes whenever you are ready!


ANNOUNCEMENT: We are returning to our pre-summer 7:30am class schedule, beginning next week. This schedule is Mon, Wed and Fri.
(That will open up some opportunity for Tues/Thurs 9am or 12:30, fyi).

2.Favorite Thing to Do in Class:

Barbell strength movements came in on top, followed by Olympic lifts. This is great, since our gym is a ‘strength-biased’ CrossFit gym, and we intend on staying that way. So, you’ll be seeing more of the same with the barbell lifts, and you’ll be getting some extra coaching in the Olympic lifts as well. Our coaches are all hard at work learning the in’s-and-out’s of Olympic lifting from a variety of sources, so as to provide you with the very best in coaching and technique advice.

There wasn’t any one thing that was a clear “least favorite”, so we’ll continue to incorporate a variety of skills and movements into our classes.

3.Seminars:

Olympic Lifting, Gymnastics and Mobility were the top three choices. Be on the lookout for upcoming seminars (taught by pro’s in the sport!) on Olympic Lifting and Gymnastics.

Alycia is working her way through a 200 page book on mobility and self-myofascial release (the pain ball and foam roller stuff),  so prepared to be brutalized…I mean, repaired during upcoming classes. A mobility ‘mini-clinic’ will probably happen a few times a year as well.

Seminars will happen on the weekends, per your suggestions.

4.Yoga:

18 of your said that you would take Yoga if it were offered on a weekly basis for a minimal add-on fee. Beginning in mid-October, you’ll be getting your wish! We are offering TWO class times/week – Wednesday at 7:45pm and Saturday at 11:15am. The two times allows for the option to add 4 or 8 yoga classes/month into your current CrossFit schedule. Yoga is something that we believe EVERY athlete at our gym needs to be doing, so we are keeping the pricing super-low. You’ll have the option to sign up for a weekly Yoga add-on for $25/month, or a twice-weekly Yoga add-on for $40/month.

More info on Yoga is coming in the next big blog post. Stay tuned!

5.Coaching:

You rated our four coaches, and they all scored well! Strengths and weaknesses were pointed out, and our general thoughts on things were re-enforced, meaning that we are all on the same page. Coaching is a lifelong learning experience, and all of our coaches are engaging in continued outside education in the form of seminars, CrossFit gym visits, coaching and lifting forums, coaching DVDs, books, and more. Overall, your responses lit a fire under our butts and we’ll be working extra-hard to uphold our status and to make improvements where necessary.

6.Additional Suggestions:

Showers: YES! Our next location (YES, we are very close to a final agreement on a stand-alone building that’s just a few hundred feet down the street. Possible move-in date of February, 2012) will have showers to make morning, lunchtime, and afternoon classes a possibility for more people.

Music: Our current playlist is a compilation of music from our members. If you don’t like it, bring in your own to add to the mix. The music is ‘approved’ by Justin and Alycia, but basically anything goes. Just burn us a CD, or somehow get your music to us, and we’ll add it ASAP.

Water: We will be selling bottled water, as well as large reusable water bottles in the front area within the next few weeks. We will also be selling PaleoKits soon (beef jerky, nuts and fruit, for easy paleo snacking on the go!).

Charity: We would LOVE to do something to support our local community, and to give back to those in need. Ameet had a great suggestion about doing something as a company (offering a fitness ‘scholarship’ to local children), or getting our members involved in a locally-based charitable endeavor. We think this is a great idea. If you have a charity or organization that is of particular significance to you, please note that in comments or email Alycia. We’d love to do a fundraiser WOD, or to put our muscles to use with a town clean-up project, habitat for humanity project, or something like that.

Partnerships: As we expand, we are looking to partner up with local companies that have similar goals of making people healthy and happy. If you know of a great small business that you think could benefit from being associated with our gym (and likewise, us benefiting from them), let me know! We are not big on offering discounts to customers of other stores (our prices are already so low per class for what we offer)but we love having friends/partners in the area that we can work with on projects, events, etc. We also occasionally barter for creative services (photography, graphic design), rehab services (massage), and we can barter for cleaning services, etc.

Thank you again for the ego boost, and the kick in the pants. It’s because of you that we are driven to become a better gym.

Posted in News & Events | 9 Comments

No Excuses Weekend is upon us…

Posted on by admin

Labor Day Weekend.

For most people, it’s a great excuse to take it easy, after a summer of taking it easy. Summer hours at the office, summer break at the schools, casual Fridays, long weekends at the beach, international travel with the family…certainly those things warrant a long weekend of crappy food, drinking and wasting time, right?

Luckily, you’re smarter than that and you’ve seen what happens to yourself after letting things slide for the summer. You know that you’re better than that and you’re eager to get back on track.

Welcome to No Excuses Weekend.

This weekend is about making preparations to make sure that your fall, winter and spring are AWESOME. Even better than last year. It’s about making sure that you are setting yourself up to be healthier, in better shape, leaner, stronger, faster, more radiant, more less-stressed, more well-rested than you were at this point last year.

If you spent more than a few minutes this summer thinking “I wish…” , ” I should….”, “I really need to….”, then No Excuses weekend is for you.

WHAT TO DO on No Excuses Weekend.

1. Make a list of your top 2 things that you want to accomplish now that the summer is over. Just pick two for now. You can always add more things later in the year.

2. Use the weekend to prepare yourself for taking action and making progress toward completing your goal.

Want to kick your sugar habit? Raid you cabinets and get rid of everything that has ingredients you can’t understand, remove all sugar (obviously) and go food shopping for grassfed meats and fresh vegetables. Scour the internet and 25 new recipes that only use whole foods. (HINT: Google “Paleo + Recipe)

Want to see more results at the gym? Start going more often! Don’t waste your money – come to every class that you paid for. If you are only coming twice a week, consider bumping up to 3x week. Also, listen. Listen to our recommendations, our movement cues, our pleads for you to go faster,  to not stop, to keep moving. Intensity is a big part of why CrossFit is effective. Get intense. Give 100% at every workout.

Want to stop feeling fat? Remove all grains from your diet. (grains = wheat, rice, corn, oats)

Want to recover faster from workouts? (Those of you who have trouble sitting down or walking after a workout…I’m looking at you) Buy a foam roller and a lacrosse or tennis ball and USE THEM EVERY NIGHT. Roll around on your ‘sore bits’ and ask Alycia or Justin for tips.

Want to learn more about nutrition? Download Robb Wolf’s Paleo Podcasts on iTunes. They are free, hour long, sometimes geeky Q&A sessions regarding how we should eat, why we should eat that way, and how to implement it.

Want to have more energy? Start going to bed 30 minutes earlier than normal. In a few weeks, push it back another 30 minutes.  Invest in heavy, dark curtains that block out all light. Also, avoid fruit or carb-heavy meals in the morning and afternoon hours.

Want to look better? Do all of the above.

Want to feel better? Ditto.

Want more people to like you? Start being nicer to them. Say hello and make eye contact. Ask questions. Listen.

Want to be less stressed? Organize yourself. Start by throwing/giving a bunch of things away. The less you have, the less you’ll have to stress about.

 

Why should you do these things on Labor Day weekend?

Because everyone else is too busy doing nothing. The world (and the space in your head) is slightly more ‘open’ than it is on other weekends.

The opportunities for positive change are right here and are more apparent than ever.

And on this one weekend, nothing is standing in your way.

No Excuses.

 

Posted in News & Events | 1 Comment

A little CrossFit here, a little CrossFit there. New signs are ready!

Posted on by Alycia

We have 30 lawn signs to disperse around the area in hopes of spreading the CrossFit word.

The question is…

WHERE DO WE PUT THEM?

You guys live all over South Jersey, so I’m hoping that you can recommend some key intersections/busy spots/traffic-ridden stretches of road that might be ideal for posting one of these signs.

PRIZE ALERT!

If we get a new member because they saw our sign at your suggested location, you’ll win a PRIZE! No limit on the number of prizes you can win, so start suggesting!!!

Put your suggestions in the COMMENTS section of this blog post.

THANKS!

-Alycia and Justin

 

 

Posted in News & Events | 10 Comments

NEW CLASS ADDED!

Posted on by Alycia

You asked and we listened. Our class schedule is growing to accommodate your schedules :)

We’ve decided to keep the 7:30am classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays, making a consistent 4-class/day schedule throughout the week.

On the weekends, we’re adding an additional SUNDAY class at 1pm. This class is perfect for those who struggle to get here during the week, and are looking to fit in an extra WOD.

The first Sunday 1pm class will be on Sunday, September 18th.

The classes will be taught by Jay or Beth, with random guest appearances by Justin or Alycia (as class participants, not trainers. It’s our day off!)

We hope you appreciate the new class. As we continue to grow, be on the lookout for further additions to our class schedule.

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