Page 1

Spring 2012

Canada’s top 10 who made theslug cut

forging our crossfit community

Don’t blow your wod Stay Sport Focused

Reigning king of crossfit Rich Froning

flexibility for warriors The Yin and Yang of Yoga

go primal

Eat to Win

get the low down

sweat rx 2012 affiliate throw down

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Publisher’s letter Volume 1, Issue 3 PUBLISHER/CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Fred Antwi Associate Editor



Sarah Lichtman COPY EDITOR

Michelle Caldaroni CONTRIBUTORS

Jenna Antonelli, Nicole Bedard, Emily Beers, Jason Cain, Matthew Lefave, Peter Lin, Bonnie Lynch, Mary Luz Meija, Neil Mota, Andrew Munaweera, Nora Nicholas, Stephanie Nihon, Christopher Nolan, Nestor Ponce, Dina Rich, Chad E. Smith, Julie C. Trubkin, Bruce Duncan Waithe, Mairead Walsh SALES ACCOUNT MANAGERS

Matthew Lefave, Andrew Munaweera regional CORRESPONDENT


While every effort has been made to ensure that advertisements and articles appear correctly, Sweat Equity Lifestyle Media Group cannot accept responsibility for any loss or damage caused directly or indirectly by the contents of this publication. All material is intended for information purposes only. The views expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of its publisher or editors. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part is prohibited without written permission from the publisher. Owned and published by Sweat Equity Lifestyle Media group 6-1500 Upper Middle Road West, #118 Oakville, Ontario L6M 0C2 Sweat rx Magazine is published 4 times a year (March, June, September, December) advertising inquiries please contact: Printed in Canada on paper from a sustainable source using vegetable-based inks. CONTACT US Readers are invited to contribute comments, views and photos. Article submission and photography should be emailed to: MODEL/PROFILE SUBMISSION If you are interested in being considered for a model/trainer/instructor profile please submit photos to:

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our crossfit community

At the Heart of an Athlete

Fred Antwi, Publisher

The heart of an athlete holds many important lessons. • Mastery requires approximately 10,000 hours of practice. When you set a goal or are handed a challenge, dig deep and be prepared to invest significant time and resources. • Athletes do not become winners on their own. Enroll teammates and a coach to support you toward your goal. • They tap into physical, emotional, mental and spiritual strength. Make sure your plan touches on all four facets. • Athletes integrate both personal accountability and external accountability. They keep their word to themselves when they commit to a plan and they have a coach or team to hold them to it externally for times when they need just a bit more. • Athletes dig down when the going gets tough and keep going. • When they come up against a block, athletes work with their coaches to add new tools to assess what’s not working, where they’re stuck and what they need to do to move forward. Anatomically, the heart of an athlete is no different than anyone else. What makes the difference is the attitude – a way of being. It is a way of life. In this issue of Sweat RX we feature some of our top Canadian athletes who consistently push beyond the threshold of pain in order to see success. We talk family, faith and the importance of mental fortitude, with the reigning king of CrossFit, Rich Froning. CrossFit photographer Christopher Nolan shares his intensity from behind the lens. To support our great Canadian athletes we have partnered with Reebok and organized what is sure to be an event you won’t want to miss – our 2012 Sweat RX Championships. (see pg. 59 for our low down on the affiliate throw down). We are amazed at the sense of community that continues to grow and we encourage you to get involved and share your stories as we forge our community together.











Up Front


World WOD

03. Publisher’s letter 06. Contributors 08. Gallery Photographer Christopher Nolan Captures the Beauty of CrossFit

20. rich froning Talking About Fame, Family and the 2012 CrossFit Games 30. canada’s top 10 Coaches Votes Reveal the Top Male and Female Contenders to Watch at Regionals 26. the look Fashion with Function

38. reebok The Sport of Fitness Has Arrived

The Scene 11. Crossfit colosseum Paul McIntyre Builds Community and Inspires a Warrior Spirit 12. Stay Sport Focused Stephanie Nihon Takes Matthew Lefave Through Some Neurotherapy 14. Guest Chef Bruce Duncan Waithe Dishes It Up 16. RX’d GIRLS Featuring Elma Ducic 18. CompWOD In Conversation With the Creators


Fit RX 36. flexibility for warriors Yoga is the Yin to the CrossFit Yang 43. Eating for life Paleo’s Ten Commandments 44. food Sirloin Salad and Almond Buttercups 47. the perfecta trifecta Muay Thai, Spartan Racing and Parkour 52. pill beware Intelligent Supplementation 54. fit travel Taking it Outdoors in the Mayan Riviera

Community 59. affiliate throw down The low down on an epic Canadian event 62. fire breather Heart and spirit of an athlete

Taking you inside the world of CrossFit - Rich Froning is Games ready.

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ONLY AT GNC *When used in conjunction with your workout regimen. Visit for the store nearest you. Š2012 General Nutrition Corporation.


At 42 years of age, Christopher Nolan will tell you that he’s been a Crossfitter for 4 years and lost 60 lbs but most importantly Nolan will tell you that CrossFit has saved his life. First introduced to Crossfit at Bally’s , he continues to train under coach Blake Schaub (owner of CrossFit Iron City) and regularly enjoys shooting CrossFit with his Nikon D3s.

Jenna Antonelli is a 24-year-old freelance writer from New England. After years of troubled skin and food allergies, she transitioned into the Paleo lifestyle with the help of her blog - The Paleo Project. Reaching thousands of readers each day, Jenna aims to make Paleo approachable and to show the world that you don’t need to be a health or fitness enthusiast to reap or understand the benefits of clean eating. Facebook: /thepaleoproject

Use the discount code SWEATRX to save 5% at checkout!

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12-02-29 3:35 PM

chad e. smith Is a CrossFitter and Yoga Master(In-training). His credentials are many including: A trainer at Next Generation CrossFit; Level 1 CrossFit Cert; 2 level 1 CrossFit Running & Endurance Certs; CrossFit Olympic Weight Lifting Cert; CrossFit Kettlebell Instructor Certification and Practicing Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. “If you never raise the bar and set higher standards for yourself, how can you expect to rise above others? Go beyond what is expected.” WWW.SMITHFIT.NET

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Sharing the Intensity By Christopher Nolan /

“I believe it is important to be a CrossFitter in order to properly capture CrossFit through photography. Photographs can freeze a moment in time, just 1/250th of a second, when we are well outside of our comfort zone. Regularly pushing through my own workouts allows me to understand the experience of my subjects beyond their athletic appearance. When I capture a moment, I know that other CrossFitters can connect with it in a way that wouldn’t be possible if I wasn’t part of the CrossFit [community] and experience.”


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the scene

Aliand ritaqu explat Quia c secusa consed gnatec ut alic

With no direction to go but up, CrossFit Colosseum was born.

Warrior Spirit photo: Justin Taylor

Profile on CrossFit Colosseum When you can invoke the warrior spirit in a high school student, a mother of three, a banker, a paramedic, and a soldier all in the same space, you must be doing something right. In the past two years, CrossFit Colosseum has been accomplishing just that, and earning its place as a top training facility for elite athletes and first-time fitness enthusiasts alike. The sense of community and heart that CrossFit Colosseum exudes is something all facilities strive for but few truly achieve. What’s the asset

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By Justin Taylor

this affiliate has that can’t be found anywhere else? —Its owner and Head Coach, Paul McIntyre. A member of the Canadian Forces for 28 years and an elite athlete with three medals for Team Canada in the European Association of Reserve NCOs Military Heptathlon, he has definitely seen his fair share of grueling training schedules. The CrossFit bug infected him some five years ago when he, with the help of a few of Toronto’s other CF pioneers, brought one of the first

level 1 certifications to the province. Soon after, the legendary Moss Park Armory competitions began popping up. Through these early competitions and several other certifications, McIntyre began to assemble a great stash of equipment from the Armory and simultaneously create a name for himself in the CrossFit community. With no direction to go but up, CrossFit Colosseum was born. The facility is large enough to hold just about any type of certification or seminar and provides ample equipment for large class sizes as well. There’s plenty of space to work on your power lifting, Oly lifts, gymnastics, or any other WOD component you can dream up. There is even in-house access to an Athletic Therapist and hand-to-hand combat training for those looking to take the warrior spirit a little further. The synergy between McIntyre’s experience and the team’s passion for providing high quality coaching are evident from the testimonials and reviews on the affiliate’s website. A Little Warriors kids’ program and a Warrior Support scheme that accepts donations for care packages and sends them to armed forces personnel overseas also give credence to the idea that this affiliate hasn’t forgotten the community element that makes the sport of CrossFit unique.


the scene

Don’t blow your WOD Neurotherapy helps you stay sport focused By Stephanie Nihon Why do some athletes

thrive while others fail when the stakes are high and they have both put in the same amount of hours of hard work and dedication? In a sport like cross fit does completing your 7th set of tabata squats just come down to hours spent at the gym? Athletes spend many hours a week on their physical game preparing for one event but what if an athlete did not know what event they’d be partaking in. That can cause the mind to go internal and play out the “what ifs” scenarios or worse cause excessive adrenalin in the body before the physical activity even begins, decreasing power range of motion and increased energy consumption. As we know, these sporting events can change an entire life or a career trajectory. So if we know now that the mind


and body are connected, shouldn’t we work just as hard at controlling and practicing our thoughts? A Crossfit athlete would not go into a competition without practicing snatches, cleans, muscle ups, rope climbs or kipping pull-ups and the same concept should apply to an athletes mind. All of us have heard about

Training your brain is half the battle.

“choking under pressure.” My job as a Neurotherapist is to allow athletes to have control over their physical, emotional and mental state and reduce this effect. Every physiological change is accompanied by a parallel emotional and mental change. For example, an elevated heart rate can be an indicator of stress, which has been associated with racing thoughts and the inability to make decisions. The human mind has 60,000 thoughts a day and when the burn sets in, unfortunately, it can be difficult not to notice that you’ve fallen behind or that you’ve still got a shot put event next. Thus biofeedback and neurofeedback can be a powerful tool. The practice increases an athlete’s awareness and control over the body and the mind. Before a season begins, athletes usually go through testing and training. Maybe they undergo a beep test, a Vo2 max test, medical testing or making the mile in less than 7 minutes. The same concept is applied here at Sport Focus. A typical

athlete will come into my office for different types of testing. Essentially, they fill out personality tests, endure a stress assessment and develop game plans. Then the fun part starts. We start training and investigating the complex behaviors of the mind using equipment that measures brainwave activity and physiology. The Electroencephalogram (EEG) is very accurate at showing the electrical activity in the brain. We’ve all experienced those racing thoughts before an important event. However, most people have not had the training to control their thoughts. Recent science has observed that high frequency brain power can be associated with increased muscle tension. It’s no wonder that when athletes have tight muscles their brain perceives a situation as a “fight or flight” scenario. Their brain then follows by being busier in order to find a plan of action. Relaxing your muscles to decrease your over-active brain may seem intuitive, however, most athletes are so amped up they cannot sense their own tension. Athletes now have the opportunity to monitor their tension and their brain waves until they can control their mental game just as easily as their physical. Being able to self-regulate is sometimes half the battle. Having the ability to monitor your focus, daydreaming, problem solving could be a new era of sport science. In a sport like Crossfit having that mental edge can be the difference between 1st and 2nd place.

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guest chef

Coconut Curry Baked Wild Salmon and Lightly Blanched Broccoli with Spicy Sweet Potato Fries


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Bruce Duncan Waithe, founder of Fuel Nutrition, a Toronto based meal delivery service, is a self-taught chef building his skills over the years on a lifelong passion for creating healthy meals with a gourmet touch.

1 tbsp. Unsweetened Shredded Coconut and about 1 tbsp. Curry Powder Pinch of Red Pepper Flakes ground in a spice grinder. Organic Virgin Coconut Oil 2 Wild Salmon Filets Skin. Lightly brush salmon filets with coconut oil and sprinkle with curry coconut mixture‌enough to make a thin crust. Bake in 350 oven for 10 – 15 min. 400g Broccoli florets Pot of boiling water Bowl of Ice water Dunk broccoli into boiling water for approx. 20 -30 sec and then immediately dunk into ice water then drain. Sweet Potato chopped into Fries 1 tsp. chili powder 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper 1/4 tsp. Paprika A couple of drops of olive oil Toss sweet potatoes in oil then coat with spice mixture and bake in oven at 350 until cooked about 20 min.

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RX’d girls

featured RX’d girl Elma Ducic

29 years old, she was born in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Elma moved to Toronto, Canada in 1995. She is the proud mother of two beautiful children, Tarik 5yrs old, and Ema 3yrs. old. Prior to starting CrossFit just two and a half years ago, Elma did some recreational running, and fell in love with CrossFit after only one workout. The element of challenge is what hooked her in.

STATS: Fran: 3:45 Filthy Fifty: 18:40 Karen: 4:54 Back Squat: 270lbs Front Squat: 230lbs Deadlift: 355 lbs Clean and Jerk: 165 lbs 5k run: 23 min Recent Competition Standing: 2011 Canada East Regionals 6th place finish


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The scene


A Conversation with the Brains Behind the Buzzword

Jamie Nugent, Andrij Kotowych, Kevin Fraser and Tate Postnikoff interviewed By Peter Lin

Over a period of the last six months, this group has climbed from the ashes of anonymity to gain some serious traction not only within their local CrossFit community, but abroad as well. We caught up with them to offer some hard-hitting questions and to dig a little deeper into “What’s going on with CompWOD?”” Where did you guys come up with the idea? Being hardcore CrossFitters ourselves, we really wanted to be more involved, locally, with what was going on. We’ve attended several CrossFit events over the years: local box competitions, sponsored events, Regionals, we’ve seen it all. So we asked ourselves, “If we were going to host, program and organize an event, how would we do it differently? How


could we make an event unique and exciting for everyone involved?” And this included the competitors, judges and spectators. It was on this day, that CompWOD was born. What makes you guys unique? We don’t want people standing around, yawning at our competitions. When we started this, we demanded the feel of a WWE Wrestling match. Seats were offered for spectators, but we assured them they would only need the edge of it! This would be complete with live play-by-play; a role that co-founder Jamie Nugent was born to play. We also wanted every athlete who laid their body on the line to be treated like Rock-stars. The programming had to be slick and exciting, not only for the athletes, but also for everyone attending the event.

Did you get a lot of support early on? I mean, it was pretty well received, a few people from the world of facebook were like “What in the Sam Heck is a CompWOD?!” It didn’t hurt having the support from top CrossFit athlete, Raul Cano; an all-around great guy and ambassador of the sport. He liked what we were trying to do and supported us from day one, and this really got the ball rolling. CrossFit Select also played a big part by welcoming us to host the “Best of the Best” CompWOD Invitational last November; an event that invited the top athletes from the Greater Toronto Area to come and compete for title of “Best of the Best”. We looked at final standings from local competitions and Regionals from that year to determine the top athletes, then held an open-style

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competition for 4 “Wildcard” spots. We really wanted people to prove us wrong, to show to us they belonged with the invited group. It created some incredible competition! To this day, people still talk about that event. We were just thrilled to be a part of it. And as humbly as I can say it This was an amazing event, complete with CrossFit HQ Judges, world-class performances and a spectacular finale. After the fortunate success of this competition, the top athletes in the city were all on board. They liked what we were trying to do. We give back to the athletes (with large cash prizes) and have a charity connection for every event we do, so that proceeds go back into the local community. How do you see yourselves continuing to give back? Whether through our own hosted competitions, weekend clinics, or posted workouts (WOW’s), we are dedicated to doing whatever we can to help out and provide for the CrossFit community. We want to make competitive CrossFit athletes better. Period. We also plan on hosting an event in June, with all profits going to any affiliate team that makes it to the

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CrossFit Games from the GTA. We would love to make enough money to sponsor these teams, or at least help them offset the cost of actually making it to the Games. This is where local boxes will have the chance to help out their own, in an effort to give back to these remarkable athletes. Tell us a little bit of what you have in store for the 2012 Sweat RX Championships It’s an honour to be part of this epic event! We couldn’t be happier. That being said, we want this event to be exciting, thrilling, and not just for athletes, but for the spectators as well. Let’s face it, the sport of CrossFit is growing fast, and as it gains momentum, more and more people are going to come out and support it. So we want these WODs to be fun and challenging, yet encompass that element of “Sexy TV” for the spectators. Don’t get me wrong, we’ll design these WODs with the cruelest/kindest of intentions for the athletes, but we want everyone in the house to have a good time. Expect the unexpected. This is CrossFit, it’s rock ‘n’ roll, so we intend to put on a show.



(Super) Rich Froning Jr

photo: Sevan Matossian

Winner of the 20 Reebok 11 CrossF it Games an d the tit le of ‘Fittes t M an on E a r th Rich ta ’, lk to Swe s at RX about faith, family an d fightin g for the 201 2 title By Mairead

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can’t see his cape or the signature ‘S’ on his chest, but Rich Froning Jr definitely reminds me of somebody. You know, faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive and leaping buildings (ok, boxes) in a single bound… Winner of the 2011 Reebok CrossFit Games, Froning Jr, 24, is undeniably a tough competitor and obviously a pretty tough cookie all-round, but he exudes a strikingly calm demeanour for the ‘Fittest Man on Earth’. His 5’10 frame, although physically chiselled to perfection, is not overly imposing and his relaxed character reveals a quiet confidence free of pretence. That’s impressive, not only considering the heady title and the $250,000 prize that came with it, but to achieve it all after only two years of CrossFit training.  After witnessing the warm-up session featuring pull-ups, push-ups, squats, snatches, bench press, dead lifts…and the list goes on, all at a lightening pace, I ask him how and where it all began.  “I was always into sports and enjoyed physical activity,” he says. “But when I was getting my undergrad in Exercise Science, one of my professors, who is the head of strength and conditioning at Tennessee Tech, showed us CrossFit videos and suggested we try it out. So my


cousin and I started doing CrossFit with CrossFit Games, before taking the some things we set up in my dad’s barn ultimate title in 2011. in 2009.” But our superhero confesses he is  It was this makeshift set-up on a not without his kryptonite. “Anything farm in Cookeville, Tennessee that laid long distance is not my friend,” he the groundwork for a future champion. laughs. “Any running really,…but I “CrossFit is a real life fitness program,” just do it. Anything I don’t like to do, I he says, “combining weightlifting, just push past the weakness and make gymnastics, running, biking, rowing, myself do it.” swimming - it’s the full gamut of  As I listen to him say it, I recognize fitness activity in one program. It’s a that this is the distinction between mere lot like most competitive sports, you mortals and superheroes. In fact, it is are always getting better comparing the mantra of all champions. It suggests yourself to others and to your personal we all have the potential to achieve best – so there’s actually a goal, rather greatness, it’s always within our reach, than just working out to workout. and Froning Jr, with his endearing That’s what I like.” modesty, offers up the key.  While it started out as a new workout  “Mental strength outweighs the regimen, Froning Jr quickly realized physical by far. There are people who are that he had what it took to compete on a lot more physically gifted than myself, a serious level. “We started comparing but you have to be able to push past that ourselves to the best times on CrossFit. point when you want to quit, when you com and saw some of our think you can only do so much, times were pretty good, when you think you can’t do “Mental so we decided to go to anymore,” he says. “The mental strength Sectionals and we made it aspect is huge.” outweighs into the top 15 to compete  His steely determination and the physical at Regionals, and it took off mental might is drawn from a deep by far... you have to be from there.” well of inspiration that he wears able to push  It was a meteoric rise, like a badge of honour. “I’m pretty past that that saw Froning Jr clinch strong in my faith,” he explains, point when 1st place at the 2010 CrossFit evidenced by the cross he has you want to Deep South Sectional, then tattooed on his back and ‘Galatians quit.” 1st place at the 2010 CrossFit 6:14’ tattooed on his side. “Actually, Dirty South Regionals, during the games I put Bible verses and 2nd place in the 2010 on my feet – Matthew 27:17:56

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photo: Sevan Matossian

“My family is a huge support system for me. My cousin competes with me and my mom does CrossFit every once in a while, but both my parents were very influential when I was younger because there was no sitting around inside, we always had to get out and do something.�

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– which is the Crucifixion of Christ, so when I was getting tired or feeling weak, I would look down and think ‘what I’m going through is nothing compared to what He went through for us’. So that was great motivation.” For Froning Jr, there’s another important component to his CrossFit craving. “Obviously doing these workouts you get physically fit, but there is also a great sense of community in the gym, people working out together in a group setting or with a partner, so you develop good friendships.”  “It’s an individual sport, but it’s not really, because you can’t train by yourself. I train every day, multiple times a day, and surround myself with people who are going to help me push past my limits.”  Indeed, no man is an island and Froning Jr graciously acknowledges the encouragement his family provides as well. “My family is a huge support system for me. My cousin competes with me and my mom does CrossFit every once in a while, but both my parents were very influential when I was younger because there was no sitting around inside, we always had to get out and do something.”  Although his wife doesn’t compete in CrossFit, she too has demonstrated her unyielding support, most notably during


last year’s CrossFit Games as the couple’s wedding was a month before the Games. “We had to postpone our honeymoon,” he says. “But she was great about it, and this is my job now – so I’m focused, and she enjoys watching it all.” With the 2012 Games just around the corner, Froning Jr is confident. “My goal is to win the CrossFit Games again in 2012, and I feel good about it,” he smiles. “You have to enjoy it. You can’t put too much pressure on yourself. With CrossFit you never know what’s going to happen and that can be pretty nerve-wracking, but you have to put that stuff aside and just do it.”  And who’s going to give him a run for his money? He points over at Graham Holmberg, the 2010 CrossFit Games Champion and his close friend. “Graham is a tough competitor,” he says, as we look across to see Holmberg clean and jerking something in excess of 250lbs I’m guessing. He also concedes Dan Bailey, who finished 6th last year, is one to watch in 2012. “He actually lives with us because he’s a graduate assistant at Tennessee Tech. So we train together, but it’s not competitive, because we’re all trying to get fit and get other people fit, that’s our main goal.”

When it comes to being an inspiration to other competitors, he humbly contends, “As long as I go as hard as I can I hope that motivates others.” Ultimately, Froning Jr is part of the CrossFit movement that is sweeping through the sports world attracting top athletes from every sporting background. “I hope CrossFit keeps growing at the rate it has,” he says. “I think everyone should do CrossFit.” But asked what one word describes how he feels about the CrossFit Games this year…? “Ready,” he says, without hesitation, and a winning grin. And while I could be accused of developing a little crush on Froning Jr in the short time I had to interview him, I think it is the mark of a gentleman (who shakes my hand, looks me directly in the eyes and even asked me to repeat my name when he didn’t hear it amid the cacophony of 200+lb weights crashing to the floor) to achieve such quick success and carry it so well. Or maybe it’s just the Southern drawl that makes him seem so gracious, polite, and likeable, but as he demonstrates his superpowers cutting through WODs and reaching from within to achieve his personal best, I can’t help but think I’d sure like him to be around if Lex Luther needed foiling.

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“My goal is to win the CrossFit Games again in 2012, and I feel good about it.”





The Look slug

Fashion with function

4-way stretch, moisture-wicking, anti-stink – your lifestyle is no object to these fab finds Whether it says it underneath your arm, across your chest, silk-screened on your back or you simply know it from the company logo - these brands aim to motivate. They’ve got style, function, and your best performance in mind.


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The look slug




coming to Canada this July ReeboK makes news by jumping in head first with a line of CrossFit workout gear that features comfort and style. Â


01 Black short pants (women) $49.99


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02 Tank top $54.99 03 Long sleeve shirt $69.99 04 Fleece Pant $119.99


SIGNATURE TEE HEATHER PURPLE $28 This 3.2oz, 65% poly / 35% cotton tee shirt has a slimmer, modern fit. A silhouette tapered cut and lightweight fabric that breathes is perfect for summer or layering. Super Soft! SAYiWONT ...and i will.

COMBO ZIP HOODIE ATHLETIC HEATHER $42 This SAYiWILL 60/40 Cotton/Poly 9oz. Zip Hoodie has an athletic, smaller fit and vintage look. Large cuffs, longer arms with cross stitched seams and an oversized hood make this garment great.

lululemon Flow Y Bra $42 Moderate support bra for yoga and gym. Acts as a great layer under any tank Luon Fabric, breathable with a cotton feel, 4 way stretch, providing support and allowing for freedom of movement Mesh back panel provides ventillation Mesh inner support comes with removable cups


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the look




The Amphibian


$59 FORGED Clothing uses a woven antimicrobial 4-way stretch material- the AMPHIBIAN is a high speed, moisture wicking beast! You can wear these in ANY environment! From the gym to the streets... The AMPHIBIAN will adapt!”


Wunder Under Pant $88 Lululemon’s perfect no fuss pant from yoga, to gym, to life, it fits like a second skin. Made with their signature luon fabric, its breathable and has 4 way stretch that moves with you. Medium rise, snug fit, ankle length. Inner waistband pocket secures $ and keys. Flat seamed for chafe-resistance and comfort Preshrunk.


Lulu’s Wunder Under Crop Made with Luon. Medium rise, snug fit, calf length. Gusset designed for greater range of movement & comfort.


Cool Racerback


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$42 Lululemon’s reversible tank is the ultimate basic for all activities Made with 4-way stretch luon; light breathable and soft


Coaches' Vote 2012

Top 10 Canadian CrossFitters By Emily Beers & Jason Cain

michelle latendre


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albert Larouche

jeremy meredith

jason cain

jeremy meredith

matthieu dubreque

Tyson Takasaki

alicia connors

lucas parker

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Heather Jones Gillespie

elma ducic

CrossFit – it’s a numbers game. 0.1 percent - not a very big number. But when it comes to the 2012 CrossFit Games, 0.1 percent is an important, and prestigious, number. Here’s why: At the start of the first round for qualification for the 2012 CrossFit Games – the Open competition - 60,000 CrossFitters from around the world signed up to compete. Of those 60,000 athletes, the best 100 individuals – the top 0.1 per cent – will qualify to compete at the CrossFit Games in California this summer. Eight of these individuals competitors, just four men and four women, will come from Canada. In light of this, we polled Canadian coaches from coast to coast about who they think will be the top athletes to watch at Regionals this spring. Coaches took into consideration competition results from the last twelve months before voting on who they think will be the most likely athletes to snag one of the coveted spots at the 2012 CrossFit Games. Once the votes were tallied, these were the 10 Canadian men and women who came out on top:


CANADA WEST MEN Lucas Parker Twenty-two-year-old Lucas Parker was the top Canadian at the CrossFit Games last year, placing 26th. This year, one year stronger and one year fitter, the young Parker has to be considered a favourite to return to the Games. Parker has superhuman strength, which he confirmed once again at a recent Olympic weightlifting competition in B.C., where he hit a 275pound snatch. And what makes him extra dangerous is that his other great strength falls at the opposite end of the CrossFit spectrum - gymnastics. He can rock freestanding handstand push ups on paralettes as if he were against a wall. Where Parker might run into problems is if Regionals is endurance biased. “I’m all turbocharger and no gas tank,” said Parker, who has spent a great deal of time running, rowing and swimming this past year in hopes of improving his endurance. Parker knows it’s not going to be easy this year. “Everyone’s a threat. This year is going to be bloody,” said Parker, before adding, “But the teen wolf is ready. I’m hungry.”

Jeremy Meredith If we erected a statue depicting an insanely fit beast-like man, Jeremy Meredith would be the statue’s mold. The Zeus of CrossFit, his mere presence is intimidating. And unlike some CrossFit athletes who might look like Tarzan but play like Jane, Meredith both looks and plays the Tarzan role quite well. He might be the most naturally-gifted athlete in Canada West. Meredith competed at the Games for the first time last year, and Facebook tells the world that Meredith’s numbers have only improved since then. He’ll be in the mix.

Jason Cain 2011 Individual Games competitor, thirty-three-year-old Jason Cain, who


steve howell

competed for Canada East last year, is now living in Canada West. A well-rounded athlete with that invaluable Games experience, Cain will pose a problem for Parker and Meredith in their quests to return to the Games. Cain says he’s feeling calmer this year heading into the Games season. “I’m going into it a little more relaxed and not overly worried of finishing really high in the Open,” said Cain, a former wrestler. “I’m keeping my training consistent and hope to be hitting my stride for Regionals and peaking for the Games.” That being said, Cain expects it to be incredibly difficult to return to the Games this year. “I believe it gets exponentially harder every year…but I want it as bad as I have ever wanted it,” he said.

Steve Howell Twenty-five-year-old Steve Howell has been a beast for a few years now. He has come close to Games qualification twice. But anyone who has seen him compete this last year agrees that he has now become a whole other kind of beast. Howell says his weakness is distance

running. This might be his only weakness, and I’ve seen him run – it’s arguable whether it’s really even a weakness. Howell decisively dominated both the Taranis Winter Challenge and the Hybrid Athletics Best in the West competition this fall. Since then, the question circulating in Canada West isn’t whether or not Howell can get to the Games. The question buzzing around BC is, ‘Can anyone beat Steve Howell?’

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Tyson Takasaki

matthew lefave

Tyson Takasaki missed out on individual qualification to the Games last year by the narrowest of margins. He then went on to help his CrossFit Taranis team earn a bronze medal in the team competition at the Games. It was some sort of consolation, but you can bet Takasaki wants another shot at individual qualification this year. A college football player, his strengths are his speed, quickness and agility. “A forty-yard dash at the Games would be epic,” said Takasaki wishfully. As bad as he wants to get to the Games, Takasaki keeps everything in stride. “I see a lot of guys involved in this sport who get too wound up, whether it’s from competition, the numbers they see, or their own programming. I just try to have fun with it. This stuff isn’t my life; it’s just another part of my life,” said Takasaki.


jeff larsh

At Six-foot and 200 pounds, twentyseven-year-old Jeff Larsh is one of the bigger players in the CrossFit world. Larsh put himself on the radar when he won this year’s Overdose Competition in Ontario. The only question is whether his strength will be enough to compensate for his weakness in the gymnasticintensive WODs?

Larsh pulls his inspiration from Wayne Gretsky’s famous line, ‘You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.’

Matt Lefave Another big man, thirty-one-year-old Matt Lefave also stands six-foot tall and weighs in at 200-pounds. Lefave is no stranger to the podium. He won the recent Best of Best Throwdown by CompWod, and also had podium finishes at the last two Overdose competitions, as well as the Reebok Firebreather Trail, where he placed second. Lefave’s hockey background makes him well-suited for short, heavy WODs; however, some gymnastics movements have been difficult for him at times. He pulls his inspiration from Richard Monckton Milnes, who said, “Virtue lies in the struggle, not the prize.”

Jay Rhodes At five-foot-nine and 175 pounds, Rhodes is well-rounded and seems to be ideally suited for both the Olympic weightlifting and gymnastics components of CrossFit. He continually posts impressive videos online to prove this. Rhodes, too, had podium finishes at the last two Overdose competitions, as well as the Reebok Firebreather Trail. Rhodes draws his inspiration from his dad and uses CrossFit as a way to get the most out of life. He has proven that he can perform at the highest level; he led his team to the CrossFit Games last year.

Matthieu Dubrecque

jay rhodes

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Matthieu Duprecque made a statement at the Canada East Regionals last year, winning the very last event. This secured his reputation as an incredibly well conditioned athlete with a strong mental game. The twenty-nine-year-old, who stands five-foot-nine and weighs in at 165-pounds, prefers lighter met cons and gymnastics-intensive WODs. The question is whether or not his strength will be enough to keep him on the podium this year.


Albert – Dominic Larouche Albert-Dominic Larouche’s dominant performance at the Canada East Regional last year was quickly eclipsed by an even better performance at the CrossFit Games. Larouche finished ninth in the world in the opening event at the Games. His recent victory at the Reebok Firebreather Trail only helped cement his reputation as the most dominant player from Canada East. Larouche is a big man who moves incredibly well. At five-foot-eleven and 190 pounds, this young twenty-two year-old is sure to be a big player on the CrossFit scene for years to come.

CANADA WEST WOMEN Angie Pye When Angie Pye - the pride of Canada West - competes, she humbles everyone in her wake. Her ripped body full of muscles on top of muscles makes even the leanest of spectators feel on the pudgy side. And then she backs it up and crushes workouts in a way most people can only dream about. Without a doubt, the thirty-six-yearold Pye is the clear-cut favourite to win the Canada West Regionals. She won the event last year and went on to place in the top 10 at the CrossFit Games. And she has only become fitter since then. Scary.

Alicia Connors Having competed at the last two CrossFit Games as an individual, twenty-two-year-old Alicia Connors is already a veteran of the sport. When she hits workouts, she doesn’t seem to care about the pain surging through her body, and her incredible muscle endurance lets her push through anything. She calls this her “crazy gene.” Connors looks to her teammate Angie Pye for inspiration. “That girl is the whole package. I feed off her intensity and energy,” said Connors. Connors will get to do just that as she


camille Leblanc-Bazinet

attempts to qualify to the Games for the third year in a row. Considering that she is the darling of CrossFit in British Columbia, she will certainly have the crowd on her side come April.

Chelsea Miller Twenty-six-year-old Chelsea Miller of Calgary has been steadily improving over the last couple years and will certainly be in the mix once again this year. Her greatest strength is probably her consistency and the fact that she’s a true all-around athlete. “I may not win that many workouts, but I tend to do generally well all-around,” said Miller, who feels more prepared this year than last.

Heather Jones Gillespie Thirty-two-year-old Heather Jones Gillespie found herself on the podium at last year’s Canada West regional competition, missing individual Games qualification by one placing. Gillespie says her biggest strength is her ability to remain come. “I don’t get too nervous or excited before a

britney holmberg

competition,” she said. Her weakness is running, calling a five kilometer run her biggest nightmare.

Lindsay Ingram Thirty-eight-year-old Lindsey Ingram is new to the scene, but according to coaches in Canada West, she is a force to be feared. Prior to CrossFit, she competed

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in Olympic Weightlifting, as well as triathlons and firefighting combat challenges. After having surgery for a torn ACL in 2010, Ingram went on to place third at the World Firefighter Combat Challenge in 2011. If Regionals have a heavy bias this year, Ingram will be in the mix.

CANADA EAST WOMEN Camille Leblanc-Bazinet

angie pye

Twenty-three-year-old Camille Leblanc-Bazinet, the undeniable favourite from Canada East, is no stranger to the top ranks of the sport. Leblanc-Bazinet exploded onto the international CrossFit scene two years ago and has finished in the top ten at the last two CrossFit Games. This former gymnast has increased her strength, is even more wellrounded this year, and is eyeing a

podium finish at the Games this summer.

Michelle Latendre Michelle Latendre has been steadily rising through the ranks over the last few years, proving that Montreal is a hot bed for talent. After an impressive showing at the CrossFit Games last year she has continued to improve and recently won The Reebok Firebreather Trail. At five-foot-one inches tall and 147 pounds, she is an explosive athlete with a solid base in both Olympic weightlifting and gymnastics.

Alexandra Bergeron Always a contender, Alexandra Bergeron is consistently near the top of the CrossFit rankings. After finishing in the top 15 in the world during the Open competition last year, Bergeron narrowly missing out on Games qualification. This has only made her more determined to make her presence known at this year Canada East Regionals, where we can expect to see her on the podium.

Britney Holmberg Britney Holmberg has been on a tear as of late, winning both the Ladies of CrossFit Canadian competition and the Overdose competition in Ontario. Holmberg is only twenty-four, but she’s already incredibly well-rounded. Although her self-admitted weakness is ice cream, this hasn’t stopped her from being able to compete with the best CrossFitters out there.

Elma Ducic

Lindsay Ingram

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Elma Ducic was the winner of both the GNC Sweat Equity Challenge and the Best of the Best Throwdown. The twenty-nine-year-old Ducic says she loves to compete. A mother of two, she has continually been improving and says she and loves WODs that favour high volume squats and avoid gymnastics movements. She is incredibly well-conditioned and mentally strong and could factor in this year.



Flexibility for Warriors

How Yoga is the Yin to the CrossFit Yang

Before I started doing yoga, I could hardly rack a bar for a front squat.

By Chad E. Smith


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t doesn’t take long as a member of the CrossFit community to notice that an unsettling majority of athletes seriously neglect their mobility. The reasons are as varied as the workouts – ran out of time, don’t know how to stretch, look like an idiot stretching, don’t need it, etc. And although some of these might be valid (you really might look a bit silly when you first start!), stretching and mobility work are an essential part of any athlete’s routine, and CrossFitters are no different. With “I don’t know how to stretch” being perhaps the most common reason that athletes ignore mobility, yoga can be the perfect option. Moreover, yoga promotes strength, flexibility, balance, and focus, all of which are values espoused by CrossFit. While there are various ways to work on mobility and flexibility, yoga can be a particularly good compliment to CrossFit. Any CrossFitter can tell you that most often, the barrier between you and success is you. Our brains are going a mile a minute, at times, imagining what can go wrong, telling us we can’t do it, perpetuating a fear of

failure. Being able to control that inner voice may not be the ultimate key to success, but it certainly helps. Yoga places a strong emphasis on cultivating focus. Approaching the mat each day, pushing through the tough poses, enduring the pain of new movements, all of these can be directly applied to CrossFit. We have all approached our lifts in the same way – persistently and unceasingly, settling into rather than resisting the pain and discomfort.  CrossFit is also about developing good mechanics. We learn proper form by doing movements over and over and over, and this requires a discipline of practice which yoga facilitates. Yoga can help raise your body awareness and sharpen your ability to tell your body what to do, so that when you know that you need to shrug harder on your clean, you can tell your body to do it, and it will respond.  Before I started doing yoga, I could hardly rack a bar for a front squat. My maxes were never reaching their full potential because the movements were never comfortable. I was always limited by tight shoulders. By bringing yoga into my CrossFit routine, I was able to increase the mobility to my shoulders, which translated into new

PRs and less pain and discomfort when performing overhead lifts. My objective in sharing my yoga experiences with you is not to advise you to practice yoga seven days a week. I am not saying that yoga is the only means to increase your flexibility. But I am saying that everyone should stretch more. And for me, being a bit more open-minded definitely paid off. Had it not been for my desire to try new things, then I would not have found my love and passion for yoga and CrossFit.    

Try something new!

wHere is a sample warm-up   do after you row, run, to or jump rope for five minutes. 10 Down-dog to Up-dog Keep arms straight, drop hips, then raise them back up 10 Deep lunge(rotations) L&R Rotate knee with hand to loosen up 10 Inch worms to a push-up Walk hands out, do push-up, then all the way to stand up 10 PVC pass – throughs (front-back=1) L&R lunge each side 30 PVC trunk twists Hold PVC in the front and drop your body weight into your shoulders 10 Arm circles (front and back) 10 Bow & Arches Just like an overexaggerated kb swing 10 Toe touches Open up the lower back 10 Roll to sit-up Rolling out the spine 10 Bridges Open up the hips

Strength + Flexibility = Power W W W. S W E AT R X M A G . C O M

10 Scorpions Twist out the spine Go to to view Chad’s video.


world wod


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world wod

le o peop What d out the love ab delivers It sport? hing you y ever t ed. ne


Reebok: The Sport of Fitness has arrived! By Bonnie Lynch PhD What does a company like Reebok, whose image has historically been associated with celebrities as diverse as Dennis Rodman (remember the Pump?), Mike Modano, and even Paula Abdul, have to offer a sport like CrossFit? For starts, how about a million dollars? In a 10-year title partnership announced last year, Reebok will contribute a $1 million combined annual purse to the CrossFit Games, with $250,000 each for the World’s Fittest Man and Woman and the remainder dispersed among the Masters and team winners. From Reebok’s point of view, the partnership is more involved. The company hopes to increase exposure to the already burgeoning “sport of fitness,” which will in turn (the theory goes) motivate whole new waves of couch potatoes and anti-gym garage rats to join the ranks of box-bangers at their local CrossFit affiliate. According to its internal promotional documents, “Reebok aims to change the way people perceive, define and experience fitness, and show people around the world that

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fitness can deliver everything they love about sport.” And what do people love about sport? CrossFit and Reebok have honed it down to the 3 Cs: community, competition and camaraderie. The infusion of a million-dollar purse is a pretty safe bet for ratcheting the competition to an unprecedented level, but what about those fluffy words “community” and “camaraderie”? Here, Reebok’s focus is on bringing affiliates together and helping them strengthen their local CrossFit presence. That support not only involves publicizing the sport, but can include things like answering marketing or business questions, sponsoring Open and Regional events, and generally making it easier for affiliates to collaborate for mutual benefit. Cynthia Pelletier, Fitness and Training Manager for Reebok in Montreal, says, “We [hope to] have more education and host more CrossFit seminars, and events as well, and kind of bring the community together. It’s our whole focus.” The partnership is also about exposing CrossFitters to a brand they may not

have considered. To this end, there’s a “custom Reebok affiliate gear program” in the works, which will allow affiliates to print t-shirts, hoodies, and other cross-branded gear that includes their own boxes’ names or logos. (If you’ve seen a Reebok CrossFit ad recently, you’ll have had a hard time missing the Reebok logo, as it adorns everything from athlete’s shoes and clothing to their strategically carried backpacks.) To publicize the partnership on a larger scale, the company has also supported the launch of a small number of Reebok CrossFit boxes. There are now four Reebok CrossFit boxes in Canada: Reebok Crossfit YUL in Montreal, Reebok CrossFit FirePower in Milton (Ontario), Reebok CrossFit 306 in Saskatoon, and the new Reebok CrossFit Liberty Village in Toronto. The boxes are “100% financed and owned by the affiliates,” explains Pelletier. Via a special licensing agreement, they have access to the Reebok name, along with the pulling power of one or more Reebok-signed celebrity athletes. “We try to use our signed athletes [like Annie


world wod

Thorisdottir and Rich Froning, the 2011 Games’ Fittest Woman and Fittest Man] in as many ways as possible throughout our marketing.” You can watch the now-famous “Empire State Building WOD” ad that features both Annie and Rich, on youtube. “We also have many other athletes that we’ve signed on, like Rebecca Voigt,” says Pelletier. “It’s amazing to see Rebecca be at an event and chatting with everybody and spending 20 minutes with someone, wanting to make sure that they get their muscle-ups. They are extremely giving.” On the long list of marketing plans, Reebok introduced Canadians to its new global campaign, The Sport of Fitness Has Arrived, through a one-of-a-kind stunt at Yonge and Dundas Square. This past February, a 15,000-pound shipping container – like the mobile CrossFit experiences featured in the new Reebok commercial –was suspended by an industrial crane 20 feet in the air over the popular downtown landmark, dropping to the ground for a public reveal. But Reebok could just as easily have thrown its millions toward sponsoring yoga, curling, or Zumba. Why CrossFit? Besides the chance to join a communitylevel sport, Pelletier says, “the element of competition and the element of mixing all different things like gymnastics and power lifting makes it interesting as kind of…the ultimate way of working out.” The company, she says, was especially impressed by the explosion in popularity of the Games. “The Games have been an amazing thing that just grew in a very small amount of time. A couple of years ago, it was on a ranch, and now it’s moved into the Home Depot Center and it’s on ESPN2. I think it speaks volumes to the work that CrossFit has done to bring exposure to the sport. The fit was perfect between their way of seeing fitness and our way of seeing fitness.” “What we want people to understand about CrossFit is that it’s not all about the scary parts, the very intense parts. It’s infinitely scalable to every single individual. Even your mother could come and CrossFit with you. As Reebok, we just want people to know that CrossFit is really for everyone. It’s


"Yes, there is a strong competitive element to CrossFit, but everyone is extremely encouraging no matter what size you are, what level you're at or what age you are. CrossFit is for everyone!" scalable, it’s doable.” Graham Holmberg, 2010 winner of the World’s Fittest Man title, agrees: “Yes there is a strong competitive element to CrossFit, but everyone is extremely encouraging no matter what size you are, what level you’re at or what age you are. CrossFit is for everyone!” But does everyone welcome Reebok as the new silver-spoon stepchild of CrossFit? Surely there must be pushback from the ranks, especially among those who like CrossFit’s metal-edged, “your mother better be tough” image. “Being

that CrossFit was a grassroots movement, we were a little worried about the response that we would get from the community,” recalls Pelletier. “But what we’ve found is that actually, they’ve been extremely embracing. They know that we are very much there to help them with their business, not to change the sport or take away from the sport.” Pelletier also notes that the culture at Reebok has benefitted in some unforeseen ways from the CrossFit partnership. “When we launched our Fitness and training program, only a couple of people were working out and we’ve gone to huge groups now working out at lunch time, and a lot of our employees are now CrossFit addicts.” She also notes that because of the high percentage of employees who are CrossFitters, along with participation of Reebok CrossFit elite athletes, customers can be assured that the design and manufacture of CrossFit clothing is really specific to CrossFit because CrossFitters are involved at every level. History of the Games One day in early 2007, CrossFit founder Greg Glassman looked out over the rolling forested hills of Aromas California and thought how cool it would be to create a “Woodstock of Fitness” there—a place where CrossFitters from around the world could come, engage in friendly competition, scrape their grip-ravaged palms into a bloody pulp, and maybe apply a cold beer compress to those tender wounds as they celebrated the unique brand of camaraderie that comes from toiling together to the point of exhaustion. So began the worldwide phenomenon of the CrossFit Games. About 70 athletes participated, and the events were chosen with the help of a peanut-roasting hopper, where small colored balls containing workout descriptions bobbled until one was chosen and read aloud, bingo-parlor style. At the end of the two-day festivities, Jolie Gentry (California), James FitzGerald (Alberta), and Team Santa Cruz split a purse of about $500. The following year, the number of competitors more than quadrupled,

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Cynthia Pelletier (above) with the crew of Reebok CrossFit YUL. Rich and Annie (below) at the 2011 CrossFit Games

to about 300, and the Games drew some 800 spectators. Jason Khalipa, a previously unknown competitor from California, surprised everyone by overtaking the much-favored Josh Everett to win the men’s title. Midwestern girl Caity Matter (Ohio) took the women’s honors, and the Oakland, California team rounded out the winners’ circle. A documentary film called Every Second Counts added fuel to the CrossFit fire that was spreading, not only to affiliate gyms, but to more individual, grass roots audiences as well. The Games went global in 2009, with Regionals held on every continent except Antarctica. The roughly 4,000 visitors to the ranch could now indulge in shopping, partake of beverages in a designated “beer garden,” and not miss the competition, which was televised to the crowd on a massive Jumbotron. Tonya Wagner, who had missed out on the women’s title by 10 seconds in 2008, broke through to victory in 2009,

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Mikko Salo of Finland quietly snagged the men’s title, and the Northwest team (Washington) took the team honors. In 2010, a new level of qualification was added—Sectionals, which preceded Regionals. The Games had now swelled to such proportions that the Aromas ranch could no longer contain them, and they moved to Los Angeles’s Home Depot Center, a world-class venue that remains their home today. 2010 also saw the beginning of a Master’s competition for the 50+ crowd. Athletes in this category can go directly to Regionals to compete for one of the 30 spaces (15 women and 15 men) at the Games. Graham Holmberg (Ohio) took the top spot in the 2010 men’s competition, and Kristan Clever of Valley CrossFit (California) won the women’s competition. CrossFit Fort Vancouver won the Affiliate Cup Trophy. Brian Curley (Massachusetts) won the first-ever male Masters competition and Laurie Carver (Washington) was the top Masters female.

In addition to the landmark deal with Reebok, “Open” competitions were introduced in 2011, replacing Sectionals as a way of gaining entrance to the Regional competitions. For the first time, anyone, whether affiliated with a CrossFit box or not, could compete. The idea caught on instantly: some 26,000 hopefuls logged six weeks of workouts, posted their scores online, and whiteknuckled a tall glass of CrossFit KoolAid as they waited to find out whether they would make the cut. As Jason Khalipa put it, “You could be some dude training in the middle of Idaho in your garage, and you can be a bad ass, and we’re gonna find you, and you’re gonna potentially win the CrossFit Games.” The 60 fittest individuals (and the 30 fittest teams) in each of 17 regions were allowed to continue. At Regionals, competitors hammered their way through six events in three days to try for a place at the Games. The Games clearly have audience appeal, too. ESPN calls the event “the best way to spend 50 bucks in sports,” and for the first time, the sports media giant added live coverage of the 2011 Games on ESPN3, with post-production coverage on ESPN and ESPN2. If you’ve never seen the Games, they’re a little like Survivor meets Who Wants to Be a Millionaire (only there’s no Life Line or Call a Friend options, and you only get “voted off” when your scores don’t make the cut). In true CrossFit spirit, the exact details of the Games’ events are still not divulged to contestants until right before they compete, so the most effective training involves keeping your game up in all areas. As Rich Froning attests, “I don’t really have one particular strength, but I try to limit my weaknesses.” Over ten separate events, Froning garnered his title of Fittest Man on Earth, while Annie Thorisdottir achieved the Fittest Woman title. [see our Rich Froning cover story] Annie Thorisdottir: 2011’s Fittest Woman Annie Thorisdottir didn’t earn the nickname “Iceland Annie” for being cool and aloof. The strawberry blonde’s sunny grin, accompanied by a thinly


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veiled dash of mischief, seems to be her default expression. The moniker refers to her Icelandic roots: Thorisdottir, 22, still lives in her hometown of Kopavogur, in a country roughly the size of Kentucky. Even as a young girl, she went hard at whatever she chose to do. Her mother remembers dropping off a normal, happy child for gymnastics lessons, and coming back several hours later to find a crumpled heap of a girl, too tired to do anything but collapse into the car and cry all the way home. Yet Annie loved the work, and never wanted to quit. She started teaching gymnastics at 15, later became a Bootcamp instructor, and found her way into CrossFit in 2009. She came in 11th, despite having only trained for a couple of months before the Games. Her star kept rising—in 2010 she bagged second place, which qualified her to skip the 2011 Regionals. Another athlete might have left well enough alone, and avoided the potential embarrassment of making a poor showing there, but for Thorisdottir, this was the best reason to compete: to prove to herself that she hadn’t peaked in 2010. She aced five of the six U.K. Regional events and went on to claim the Fittest Woman title. Although she has plans to study medicine in the future, for now she’s in her element as head coach and owner of CrossFit BC (Iceland) and an ambassador for the Reebok CrossFit partnership. Allowing her life to revolve around CrossFit, says Thorisdottir, “was a choice that I made, and I think that it couldn’t have turned out any better.” When asked what special qualities she has that enabled her to become the Fittest Woman on Earth, she pauses to give the question some thought. “I think anybody can do what I’m doing, as long as…they enjoy it,” she concludes. But before you start making room on your mantle for your own Fittest Woman or Man trophy, consider her final words on the subject: “I’m really competitive, and when I do something, I do it like 150%—I go all the way with it. When I’m going to the gym and spending the time there, I look at it like more as happy hour for me.” A shrug, a chuckle, and that mischievous grin punctuate her claim perfectly.

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The paleolithic diet

Eating for Life 10 Tips When Eating Paleo

1. Enjoy eating Paleo. Enjoy what you eat. If you are unhappy with what you are eating you are unlikely to continue to keep eating that way, and once the nutrition is gone, staying fit and healthy becomes much harder. 2. Pre-cook food. Spend a few hours at the beginning of the week and cook big batches of food. This will allow you to minimise the amount of time that you have to spend cooking during the week. 3. Cook more than you need. This is similar to the previous tip, the idea being that if you cook more than you need for one meal then you can eat it later, or the next day. 4. Rather than cutting yourself off from all of those foods which you enjoy that aren’t 100% Paleo friendly, simply eat smaller amounts and be moderate. 5. Do not keep junk/unhealthy food that you know you shouldn’t eat, in the house. For most people, if it is in the house they will eventually eat it. 6. Do not run out of food. This is horrible. Do not let it happen to you. 7. Try planning out your meals for a week. This comes easily to type one personalities, for the rest of us it can be a nuisance. Though this has the benefit of ensuring you know what you need in the house for the week, and eliminates that time wasting period during which you try and figure out what you should cook for dinner. 8. Keep a handy meal replacement shake/can of tuna in your car/office/desk/bag for a Paleo friendly snack in case plans change. 9. Learn to use spices; this will do wonders for you and will offer variety and different flavors to your meals. 10. Eat lots of vegetables; try and eat a good variety with many different colors.

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(abbreviated paleo diet or paleodiet), is a modern nutritional plan based on the presumed ancient diet of wild plants and animals that various hominid species habitually consumed during the Paleolithic era— a period of about 2.5 million years duration that ended around 10,000 years ago with the development of agriculture.


slug food

Spring in your step

Sirloin Salad with Blood Orange Vinaigrette Dressing By Jenna Antonelli When trying to round out your salad, think colourfully. It’s the easiest way to remember what you’re missing. It should come from the earth, not a package. It should be one ingredient, not several. If your salad has a wide range of colours, the addition of protein and a homemade salad dressing, it will be a perfect meal for any time of the day, specifically post-workout.  Serves 4 Grilled Beef Sirloin

Spring in your Step Salad

Blood Orange Vinaigrette

1 1/2 lb sirloin steak

6 cups of baby arugula

2 blood oranges

2 teaspoons of coconut oil

1 cup of carrot shavings

2 limes

sea salt and pepper

1 small red pepper, diced

1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar

1 small orange pepper, diced

1/4 cup of red wine vinegar

Preheat oven on broiler setting, leave oven door ajar. Brush steak with oil and salt and pepper, to taste. Set up a drip pan on bottom rack of the oven. On a rack above the drip pan, place steak directly on the rack. Cook steak in this position for 5 minutes. Flip steak and cook for 4 additional minutes. Now, move rack with steak to top position in oven, moving rack with foil and drippings just underneath, and cook for 3 minutes. Flip 1 last time and cook for another 4 minutes. Transfer steak to wire rack and rest for 5-6 minutes. Cut steak into 1 inch slices.


1 small yellow pepper, diced 1 small red beet, sliced

Rinse and dry arugula, divide among 4 large plates or a large salad bowl. Add carrot, peppers and red beets. Combine all ingredients. Top with sliced sirloin. Serve with dressing, see recipe below.

Whisk all ingredients together, serve over or on the side of salad.

Benefits of Homemade Salad Dressing No added sugar Less expensive than store-bought brands No hidden ingredients Flexibility; you can add more or less of anything you have Experimentation; you can create salad dressings with any fruits, vinegars and spices of your choice.

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Easy as One, Two Two Ingredient Almond Buttercups By Jenna Antonelli

These almond buttercups are a perfect homemade treat,

you can share with the entire family. The chocolate is rich and allergen-free while the almond butter adds health benefits that peanut butter never could. Be sure to use silicone cups as they are reusable, hold the shape perfectly and are easy to clean. Makes 12 2 cups of Enjoy Life chocolate chips 1/2 cup of organic creamy almond butter 12 silicone cups

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Place a pot of water over medium/high heat. Pour chocolate chips into a heat-safe bowl and place on top of pot, to form a double broiler. Stir constantly until all chocolate has melted evenly. Place 1 tbs of chocolate into each silicone cup. Place 1/2 tbs almond butter in the center of each chocolate filled cup. Use the remaining chocolate to top off each almond butter cup. Some almond butter may still be showing. Place silicone cups on a tray and refrigerate until the chocolate sets. Flip the cups over and you have a hard chocolate shell filled with a creamy centre.


509 Main St E. Milton, ON L9T 3J2 Phone: 905-864-9941 Email: 46

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Muay Thai, Spartan Racing and Parkour By Julie C. Trubkin W W W. S W E AT R X M AG . CO M




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fit RX

This is for your inner masochist. We all have one; some of us just indulge it more than others. Most of us just toy with the idea of the hardcore workout; it’s in the realm of ‘one day’. But, the sentiment amongst an increasing few in our otherwise slothful society is that anyone can do it. Workouts that model the intensity of a military training regime are increasingly sought out as a means to disrupt the repetitive structure of conventional training. Muay Thai, Spartan Racing and Parkour are three such distinctive outlets for those with a penchant for pain. All three can produce actual blood sweat and tears. All three pursue an inherent need for a personal challenge with a distinctive rawness and purity of spirit. While very much about the physical, they are ultimately about triumphing over the mental. MUAY THAI There is a base satisfaction that is released during Muay Thai, a style of kickboxing that originated in Thailand and that literally translates to “the science of eight limbs.” Warren Lee, founder and president of Toronto Kickboxing and Muay Thai Academy (TKMT) says “this essentially means that one possesses eight weapons: two fists, two feet, two elbows and two knees.” Exploring one’s multi-limbness, at the risk of being revered as a Hindu-god, can be both intriguing and intimidating. Where other martial arts focus on the art, Muay Thai is heavily focused on cardio and conditioning. A typical beginner class includes skipping, push-ups, and abs workouts, followed by an hour of exploring the art of Muay Thai. That includes everything from how to hold Thai pads, how to throw a punch and kick, how to train with a partner, to the very basics idea of what a fight stance is. Lee says that the more advanced workouts “become very anaerobic with a bootcamp style warm-up, including ‘burnouts’ designed to fatigue the participant. No matter how tired they are mentally, we make sure they push through.”

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“The sport is more mental than physical” says Lee, and that is reflected throughout TKMT’s members, whose youngest is four years old and eldest is 64. “Most people come here because they are bored with their regular gym routine. They want something more challenging, more social and a workout where you’re also learning something.” Lee has purposely created a more approachable experience to what is “originally a very intimidating, male-dominated sport, replete with sweaty grunting men and an overall dirty and unwelcoming energy.” Lee credits the huge female population at his gym with the fact his uncharacteristically clean and inclusive space is welcoming for both genders and for all levels of fitness. “And to be honest,” continues Lee, “women are so much better to teach then men. They actually listen and don’t have the same kind of ego.” Perhaps it isn’t the same kind of ego but ladies can be just as intense. “I would definitely recommend Muay Thai even if you are not planning on fighting. I guarantee that it will whip you into shape quicker than anything else” says Mikaela Mayer, whose training led to a love of boxing. She is currently training full time for the 2012 Olympic boxing trials. “Physically as well as mentally, combat training will wear you out. The plus side is that you develop focus in the ring and that transfers to all aspects of your life.” SPARTAN RACING “A military obstacle course on steroids” is how Selica Sevigny, co-creator of the Spartan Race describes the muddy, high intensity event that has attracted participants aged 16 to 68, from single moms and amputees to Olympic sprint runners, Ironman finishers and professional football players. This year over a quarter of a million participants are expected in events across the US, Canada and the UK. The idea that if you can do this, you can do anything is the ultimate source of motivation. A love of hardcore conditioning led Bernard Abarquez, a spirited advocate of


fit RX pushing one’s self to the extreme, from Muay Thai to training for his first Spartan Race. “I think this race is an opportunity to actually utilize the conditioning that you do in training but don’t get to really use in a fight. So while it brings you to a certain performance level, doing push-ups or bear crawls can actually help with something like Spartan Racing because you’re going to be crawling under barbed wire.” A mud-covered, ear to ear grin, medal and muscles glistening photo-op is where his training is taking him. The attraction to hardcore is growing but whether this appeal turns to action is contingent on breaking that mental block. “At the end of the day you are really competing against yourself and your self-imposed limitations,” says Sevigny. The Spartan Race is a hybrid obstacle course crosscountry 5k race. “Races vary from the entry level 5k sprint with 15 that anyone can finish to the Spartan Death Race, 48 hours of pure hell” promises Sevigny. “It’s so important to intentionally expose yourself to challenges that will scare you and make you grow” touts Sevigny, and really it is this capacity to persevere beyond cramps, heaving, nausea, muscle exhaustion and more that is at the core of this event. Sevigny says that the race is “designed to test, push, challenge but not destroy you.” An experiment in personal “resilience, strength, stamina, and the ability to laugh in the face of adversity, the course will demand every ounce of strength, ingenuity and animal instinct you thought you lost centuries ago.” So adrenaline addicts rejoice and those harbouring serious apprehensions fear not, jump in anyway.

increasing presence in Hollywood films is inspiring more participation, but it is only in actually doing it that one can fully appreciate it. It completely alters the way you see your surroundings. Obstacles become obsolete. Hardcore. The word literally says ‘hard to the core.’ The idea of dragging your entrails behind you while you heave yourself forward repeating “I can do this” is the image that comes to mind for most. But splattering your viscera à la Pollock is not the idea. At the core it is about obliterating obstacles; mental and physical, metaphorical and actual. The realization that we are our own biggest challenge in life is central to all three of these explorations in physical limitations. Warren Lee’s advice for the intimidated? “Come watch a class. All different body types and fitness levels can do it.” And Selica Sevigny’s take on the idea of intimidation all together? “I can see how people might be intimidated at first, but in a good way. I feel the word ‘intimidating’ has gotten a bad reputation. Something that’s intimidating should not always be considered a negative but rather looked at as a source of motivation to do the hard work required to develop into an incredible person.” So, be it swerving to miss a punch to the solar plex, dodging a gladiator or using a cement wall as an actual step, Muay Thai, the Spartan Race and Parkour are all training grounds for the unexpected. Disrupting the mundane and uncapping self-imposed limitations, all three seek out the seemingly impossible and make it not only possible, but achievable. It is all about triumphing over the self.

PARKOUR Jumping is a perfectly reasonable way of travelling and pushing yourself to your limits. Parkour does just that. It looks as crazy as a bird flying into a window pane and continuing on unaffected—the cringe-worthy grace of Parkour appears random but is in actuality an elaborate series of strategically mapped out movements. David Belle, credited with creating the difficult to define sport in the 1980s, and devotees, known as Traceurs, see training potential everywhere. The sport is essentially about using the urban environment as a playground. Acrobatics in an urban space, the sport is all about using the city environment as inspiration as your own personal gym. Walls, fences, tree branches—ultimately anything can be used for this mid-air art form. The idea is to get from point A to point B while doing anything but walking in a straight line. Watching a Traceur in action is fascinating as they defy gravity and explore. At once both chasing and running as if being chased, the fury of movements is intense, dirty and beautiful. Scrapes and bruises are par for the course and though it is a male-dominated activity, it is very accessible to women. Upper body strength and flexibility are developed over time. Dan Iaboni established PKTO in 2004 as a way to join the growing Parkour community in Southern Ontario to do just that. YouTubing some of the incredible videos of Parkour is the best way to get a sense of this sport. Its


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pill beware The nutritional supplements market is full of products but slim on facts. Protect your health and enhance your CrossFit performance through the science of Intelligent Supplementation (IS) By Andrew Munaweera


Proper training, plenty of rest and a clean diet traditionally form the foundation for health and CrossFit performance. Scientific studies, clinical trials and real-world results demonstrate that another element called Intelligent Supplementation (IS) can also noticeably and significantly enhance CrossFit athletic performance while protecting your most precious asset – your health. This introductory article outlines a researchbased, effective CrossFit supplementation program that enhances the results that are achievable with a foundation of proper training, sufficient rest and a clean diet. Before diving into the IS Protocol, I’ll first explain the difference between IS and Conventional Supplementation (CS). In

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Fit RX simple terms, I define IS as the thoughtful use of potent, pure and safe nutritional supplements which enhance functionality (our ability to do things) and health (the source of our ability to do things). An IS Protocol usually includes only a few powerful products because these products produce measureable results. In contrast to IS, I define Conventional Supplementation (CS) as the excessive and/or hopeful use of products for health or performance enhancement. You’ll notice I use the word hopeful here – it’s a great word to describe what I have seen over the last 21 years in the business. Namely, wonderful people purchasing products that promise a world of results but fail to deliver anywhere near the hype, or worse, do not deliver at all. I used a CS strategy during my early years in the supplement industry – I bought a lot of products promising results, yet most of them didn’t have research or scientific evidence to support their claims. I took them because I hoped and believed they would work. Yes, I was a fool and I was soon parted from my money. Now that you understand the difference between IS and CS, let’s get to the fun part – the part where I give you the science-based Intelligent Supplementation Protocol.

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What To Look For

Reason For Use


Omega-3 Fish Oil

Manufactured using low temperature carbon dioxide extraction (best choice) or molecular distillation

Cardiovascular health, brain health, anti-inflammatory and membrane health

1.2 g – 3.2 g daily of EPA + DHA - Greater than a 3:1 ratio of EPA to DHA for resolving inflammation and enhancing mood - 2:1 ratio of EPA to DHA for heart health

Increased muscular size and strength

20 – 25 gram dose within 30 minutes after a workout. Mix with water, almond milk or soy milk

Sourced from anchovy and sardines (small fish, more sustainably managed)

Whey Protein Isolate

Undenatured isolate sourced from grass-fed cows Biological assays to prove microfraction levels, amino acid profile and minimal levels of heavy metals and pesticides

Enhanced connective tissue integrity, whole body antioxidant status and immune function

Free of: Lactose, fat, colorings, flavorings, thickeners (guar and xanthan gums), probiotics, inulin and FOS

Vitamin D3


D3 form – the D2 form is not as effective or research-supported

Immune function

Oil-based (MCT or olive oil base)

Mood enhancement

Lactobacilli and Bifidobacteria without added fructooligosaccharides (FOS)

“Friendly” bacteria for immune function, nutrient absorption, nutrient production and gut tissue health

2 billion – 50 billion daily in divided doses with meals (dosage depends on the level of support needed and the type of probiotic formula used)

Foundational omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids for energy, endurance and recovery

One tablespoon twice daily, mixed with food

Powder or capsules (powders should be in glass bottles with metal lids)

Tissue health

2,000 iu – 5,000 iu per day with meals. Check with a licensed physician before taking dosages of 2,000 iu per day or greater

Avoid soil-based organisms Potency guarantee until a printed expiry date

Omega-3 Seed Oil

Glass bottles with metal lids No borage oil Mix of unrefined flax, sunflower, coconut, evening primrose and rice bran oils for maximum quality

Source of powerful oil-soluble compounds



The Mayan Riviera

Taking It Outdoors By Mary Luz Mejia

Long recommended for its soft, talcum-white beaches, resorts and endless sunshine, the Mayan Riviera offers infinitely more than the non-stop party that is Cancun. Turquoise blue-green waters fringed by balmy beaches have been the beacon for Canadian sun-seekers looking to unwind, but few take full advantage of the tropical paradise at their doorstep. From hiking to snorkeling, zip lining to mountain biking, this Riviera says si to the outdoor fitness buff with open arms. Resorts in and around the region offer more than spate of swim-up bars and buffets. At the El Dorado Royale for example, ( athletes who want a side of sun with their fitness regiments can sign up for celeb trainer David Pritchard’s designed “My Destination Wellness� multiday program of mind, body and soul rejuvenation. Starting at about $500 USD for three days for this program, participants meet with a Wellness Concierge to determine their goals first. Once those are set, you get one-on-one time with a personal trainer, unlimited fitness classes (from Pilates to crosstraining), nutrition workshops and chef-prepared healthy meals all set against a lush, vitamin-D drenched backdrop. You can go hard and play hard or take a more Zen approach


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Cenote shot in the Mayan Riviera where you can snorkel, scuba and swim. The water temp is like a Cdn. lake in summerMUY refreshing!

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travel to the experience- which is customized for each participant. Guests at this and other nearby resorts can also enjoy guided mountain bike tours around spacious properties, sunrise yoga classes, scuba clinics, water aerobics and beach-side fitness programs that include swimming, kayaking and jogging. When it’s time to leave the manicured confines of the resort and explore the Yucatan Peninsula, there’s no better place to start than at one of the awe-inspiring remains of the Mayan civilization. An early morning ride to one of the mysterious Mayan cities dotting the Peninsula might lead you to Coba, Chichen-Itza or Ek Balam (meaning Black Jaguar in Mayan) dating back to 600 AD. Near the beautiful Spanish colonial city of Valladolid, Ek Balam is one of the most important Mayan ruins in the Mundo Maya. The centerpiece is what’s called “The Tower,” which is about 100 feet tall, and 500 feet across- the largest “pyramid” in the region. Some choose to tackle the ruins full-force, jogging up, down and back up the structure again in the time it takes most visitors, sweaty and breathless, to reach the pinnacle. After the climb, take a breather and enjoy a bird’s eye view of what was once an important agricultural epicentre in the Mayan worldcomplete with a look at the ceremonial ball court. To compare this uneven, rock staircase climb to a Stairmaster on steroids would be a gross understatement – even getting down requires a good deal of concentration. Stay hydrated amigosyou don’t want to get sunstroke in the tropical humidity! Post-climb, cool off in the crystal clear blue waters of the nearby X-Canché cenote - an underground river created by fresh water sinkholes. X-Canché houses majestic stalactites that are as old as the land above them. Your guides and hosts will likely be Mayan, in fact most of them still speak the ancient language. Suit up, don a pair of snorkeling goggles and wash off any sun block before entering the pristine waters. Unlike the region’s warm-as-bathwater ocean, the cenote is more akin to a Canadian lake in late July-it’s brisk and refreshing.

The Altar at Cobaa Mayan ruin in the Mayan Riviera


Guides are careful to point out where you’ll need to lift your feet because a stalactite cut can be nasty! Take a moment to behold a ray of light piercing the underwater cave where brightly coloured schools of fish swim past in erratic zigzag patterns. You’re swimming in what the Mayas considered to be the entrance to the underworld; the startling stillness of the place can feel almost eerie to our super-saturated minds and bodies. If you’re an advanced scuba-diver or cave diver, you can find a cenote to match your skill level as there are approximately six thousand from which to choose in the states of Quintana Roo (where the Mayan Riviera is located) and next door Yucatan. The underwater sights of ancient rock formations coupled with crystalline waters are a sight to behold! Serious divers won’t want to miss the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef, the second largest in the world, which spans four countries and a thousand kilometres. The middle and outer reef, with a depth of 125 feet, offers majestic canyons, sunken Spanish galleons, coral caves, tree-like black coral, nurse reef and hammerhead sharks. Choose a sustainable outfit that respects the biodiversity of this natural wonder. Adrenaline junkies who want to try their hands at rappelling, mountain biking or hiking through ancient Mayan jungles or zip lining above the lush canopy of tropical foliage can hit one of many biosphere parks including X-Canché, the Xplor Adventure Park and Chikin-Ha. If, like most urbanites, who perhaps choose to engage in a full-throttle hike through Mayan jungle, you find yourself listening to a rustling in the bush, don’t be surprised if it happens to come from an elusive jaguar. It happens every once in a while- but worry not, jaguars aren’t interested in you. In fact, according to the Mayans, a jaguar is the god that rules over the Mayan Underworld and who, by day, prowls across the morning sky. So if he prowls across your hiking path, it’s likely a stealthy reminder that this is sacred Mayan territory where the king of the jungle isn’t man, but jaguar- the ultimate Mayan symbol of power.

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CONTACT NUMBER: EMAIL: PLEASE SEND IN THIS SUBSCRIPTION CARD ALONG WITH YOUR CHEQUE TO: Sweat Equity Lifestyle Media Group, 6-1500 Upper Middle Road W. Suite #118 Oakville ON L6M 0C2 or payments may also be made via PayPal to

DVD Instructional Series

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Toronto • Mississauga


September 2012 - Milton Fairgrounds

community slug

Sweat RX 2012 Championships photo: Nicole Bedard

Get the Low-Down on this Canadian-style Throw Down By Dina Rich

What happens when 5 specially selected and 端ber-zealous Canadian CrossFit affiliates decide to throw their collective muscle and wits behind a new event? Well, you get nothing less than the Epic Throw-Down that is the 2012 Sweat RX Championships. W W W. S W E AT R X M A G . C O M

Affiliates CrossFit Montreal, Reebok CrossFit 306 (Saskatoon), Hybrid Athletics (Langley, BC), CrossFit Kinetics (Halifax), and CrossFit Colosseum (Toronto) will be hosting the event, with qualifiers to be held on June 1st through 3rd. All CrossFitters throughout Canada are eligible to attend and/ or compete at one of the affiliate locations.


community This is an event you won’t want to miss! For the first time, Canada’s Western & Eastern athletes will compete head to head— doing the same workouts on the same days—to see who really are Canada’s fittest man and woman, fittest masters athletes, and top affiliate team. Here’s how it works: A “Best of the Best” individual qualifier similar to the CrossFit Open will be conducted online. Three WODs will be released, and competitors will videorecord their performance of each and send in the links to their videos. An individual’s total score for the three WODs determines their seeding. The top-seeded 50 men and 50 women will be invited to compete at the finals for the title of top male and female CrossFitter in Canada. (If you’re a top 5 placer in Canada’s West or East CrossFit Regionals, you’ll be able to skip the online qualifier and get a personal invitation to the Sweat RX finals.) The top 5 affiliate teams from each region automatically advance to the finals, to be held during canfitpro at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre August 17-18 and hosted by Reebok. The last CrossFitters standing when the points are tallied up will walk home with a piece of the $13,000+ in cash and prizes, and could secure a place on the cover of Sweat RX Magazine. Jacques Ambroise, of CrossFit Montreal, can’t wait. “This event is going to bring out the best in the Canadian Crossfit community,” he says. “The West and the East coming


together to determine the best Canadian athletes and teams is really something to look forward to!” Not to be outdone in the enthusiasm department, Nate Beveridge, representing the Vancouver-area affiliate, notes that the event “is going to be a huge boost to the CrossFit community in Canada. The sport of CrossFit is growing rapidly and the amazing development of ‘the community’ continues to be like no other. This event will really help to bring CrossFit some great exposure here in Canada, and Hybrid Athletics is excited to be a part of it.” The Toronto qualifiers will be held at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre at the Toronto Pro Super Show Fitness Expo, where 10,000 square feet of competition floor await competing athletes, teams, and spectators. Vancouver, Saskatoon, Montreal, and Halifax will host similar qualifier events in their cities. “[These] national qualifiers are incredibly important, as they will give all athletes an opportunity to push against the top athletes in their region, says Jason Cain of CrossFit 306. “This will further the sport of CrossFit and ensure that Canadian CrossFitters have more opportunities to develop their competition skills.” CrossFit Colosseum owner Paul McIntyre couldn’t agree more, and also sees events like Sweat RX as important for the sustainability of the sport. “[These] competitions accomplish several things. They foster the growth of our community and the

“This will further the sport of CrossFit and ensure that Canadian CrossFitters have more opportunities to develop their competition skills.” sport of CrossFit, which in turn will develop a base of athletes that will aspire to compete.” CrossFit Kinetics’ Jim Hardy adds that besides the draw of financial gain and glory, the event has natural appeal for the pure fun of getting affiliates and athletes together to promote the sport, and also makes it easy for newbies who’ve never set foot inside a box

to see what CrossFit is all about. “I think the event is important because it’s going to bring the boxes together from around the region for a great time and great competition—something that’s been missing around here since the Open format was introduced. But also it’s going to help bring awareness to the sport of CrossFit to those who may not otherwise see it.”

For more information or to register, go to or

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.com s x p r i t h s a n e mpio a h c x www.sw r t ea w s / : k d by o powere facebo



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Heart & Spirit of an Athlete


Reebok Firebreather Trail By Nora Nicholas

Here’s a CrossFit pop quiz: The term “Firebreather” refers to which of the following? (A) a new energy drink in which gasoline is the active ingredient; (B) a CrossFit mascot who appears at events wearing Reeboks and a dragon costume; (C) a WOD that requires you to push a flaming car 30 feet to a waiting fire truck; (D) the indomitable heart and spirit of an athlete in the face of severe challenges. If you said D, step into the ranks of CrossFit aficionados everywhere who’ve added Firebreather to their ever-increasing list of must-know CF lingo. The term Firebreather has become synonymous with the extra something that makes an athlete keep going when anyone else would quit. But Firebreather isn’t just a catchy term; it’s also the watchword of a major CF event called the Firebreather Trail, created by Reebok CrossFit and L’Usine

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CrossFit of Montreal and held for the first time in February. Reebok CrossFit spokesperson Cynthia Pelletier says she was initially approached by l’Usine CrossFit Head Coach Dominic Adam, who said he wanted to find a way to unite the Firebreathers in the East, who, unlike

their counterparts in the West, didn’t have many events that included everyone. Pelletier and Adam started brainstorming and soon decided that the event needed to meet four basic criteria: it had to be fun, interesting, inclusive, and a good preliminary challenge for the Open competition in March.



“[February was the] perfect time of year,” says Pelletier, “since everybody is pumped about the Open. They get to see where they’re at and compete with the best, right before they start.” And what better place than Montreal? “Montreal is our home base for Reebok Canada. It’s also the home base for L’Usine. I think it makes sense for us because it’s close to home, but also because it’s a pretty cool city for people to come and hang out.” Adam adds, “One reason to choose Montreal is that it’s really the center of Ontario, Quebec, and the Maritimes, so it’s easier for everyone to come together. Toronto has Regionals, so why not make it Montreal? And I really think we got all the Firebreathers out there.” Adam also suggested sweetening the deal by having Reebok follow each winning athlete on the six-month “trail” from the Open to the Regionals and finally to the Games. The idea, says Pelletier, is “to get everybody to know them, root for them, and then see how their journey’s going with all the support that they get from all of our sponsors.” There’s plenty of swag to go around, too. For an individual registration fee of $100 ($330 for teams), participants compete for about $25,000 worth of gear and equipment, supplements, and services. A final motivation for creating the Firebreather was to offer a little smoother transition to the Games.


“We got to the Games last year and that was after only two big events [Open and Regionals],” recalls Adam. “It was kind of overwhelming at one point.” He notes that being exposed to the CrossFit competition environment earlier allows athletes to find and address their weaknesses before the stakes get too high. How it works Pelletier and Adam wanted the WODs for the Firebreather to be created by the athletes, but just in case anyone’s idea of a WOD went too far astray (say, to the fiery car-push), guidelines were provided and the WOD submissions were also vetted by Alex Watson, one of L’Usine’s coaches. The first one was from Rebecca Voigt and Dave Lipson, so it’s pretty high level.” Voigt’s and Lipson’s WOD combined box jumps, Turkish getups, and shuttle

to find your weaknesses, there is no better way than to work out in front of hundreds of people in a competition.

runs. WOD 2 was a 1RM snatch; WOD 3 incorporated KB swings, box jumps, muscle- ups, and handstand walks; WOD 4 presented 3 rounds of squat clean and jerk, row, and doubleunders; and the final WOD was 4 rounds of 4 minutes of 50-foot sled drag and an AMRAP with rounds of kettlebell snatches and lunges plus Burpee pull-ups. But what if you haven’t graduated to Firebreather status yet? Say you’re only breathing steam on a good day and you don’t have a prayer of getting up on a podium until everyone else has left the arena? Adam says not to worry—the Firebreather event is still a good way to train. “From an athlete’s point of view, in your gym you are in your comfort zone, so if you want to find your weaknesses, the dent in your armour, there’s no better way than to work out in front of hundreds of people in a competition setting.” Who knows—you might even get a few lessons in fire breathing along the way.

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Reebok CrossFit Collection, Coming to Canada, July 2012.

Š2011 Reebok International Limited. ReebokŽ. Crossfit is a registered trademark. All rights reserved.

Profile for Sweat RX Mag

Sweat RX Mag Spring 2012  

We are purveyors of functional fitness! The first magazine to provide in depth content, expert contributors, athlete and affiliate profiles,...

Sweat RX Mag Spring 2012  

We are purveyors of functional fitness! The first magazine to provide in depth content, expert contributors, athlete and affiliate profiles,...