Thursday, April 18

I need to congratulate a few people here for their accomplishments over the last few weeks!

First, the winners of the Nutrition Challenge have been announced and here they are:
The Top 3 Weight Loss (% bodyweight lost):
1. Courtney Schievink
2. Matt Maslowski
3. Matt Berry

Top 3 Points:
1. Josh VanSickle
2. Calvin Cooper
3. Heather Johnson

We had a LOT of people lose weight and gain muscle mass on this challenge. We are very proud of everyone that participated and stuck with it for the six weeks. Hopefully you learned some skills you can carry forward from here.

Next up, congrats to Christian Roberts for making it to the Master’s Online Qualifier for the CrossFit Games! He finished top-200 in his age group so the Online Qualifier is the next step in making it to the Games. He’ll have to do five workouts over one weekend (May 2-6) and submit his scores and videos. The top 10 from each age group make it to the Games. Save that weekend and help cheer Christian on or do the workout with him to give him a push!

And last but not least, we had three people medal at the Spartan Open weightlifting meet this past weekend!
Tom - 🥈 81 kg weight class
Josh - 🥇 67 kg weight class
Kristen - 🥇59 kg weight class

I know more of you were in action too - running a 5k (for the first time!), riding in the Barry-Roubaix bike race, and more - so congrats to everyone that is putting their fitness to the test. We love that so many of you are getting outside and using your fitness!

Workout for Thursday, April 18
Pull Up Progressions (yes, you’ll be seeing this more often for the next few weeks)

20 min Not For Time Work
Ring Dips
5X5 - 1 sec Pause at Top and Bottom of Each Rep
*Add Weight if Able to.

DB Box Step Ups
5X5 on Each Leg
*All 5 reps on Right Leg, Then All 5 reps on Left Leg

Jump Rope Practice
Accumulate 5 minutes of Jump Rope Practice
Practice Position for Single Unders and Double Unders.
*No more than 500 Double Unders
*No more than 1,000 Single Unders

CrossFit 616Comment
Wednesday, April 17

In the snatch and clean and jerk, timing is everything. You can be as strong as you want, but if your technique is off, you’ll be missing lifts.

Check out this video from Jared Enderton on fixing the bar path in the snatch and fixing the timing of your extension so you can get max power and keep the bar in the correct spot.

If this applies to you, slow down in the warm ups and in your practice today and work on timing. Fixing that will allow you to display your strength properly and move more weight!

I’d recommend checking out all of his videos and watching other high-level lifters. Some people learn best from watching others. Remember, not everyone has the same exact technique and not all great lifters perform the lifts with optimal technique. So if you see something you don’t understand, please ask a coach!

Workout for Wednesday, April 17
15 minutes to Build to Heavy Complex
1 Power Snatch
1 Overhead Squat
1 Hang Power Snatch
1 Overhead Squat

6 Rounds For Time:
20 Wall Balls (20# to 10' / 14# to 9')
10 Push ups

CrossFit 616Comment
Tuesday, April 16

The new Kids Class session begins Saturday, April 27! Please share this with your friends and family. The kids classes are open to all kids, not just members of 616.

We will have class on the following Saturday mornings:
April 27
May 4
May 11
May 18

This session will once again have two age groups: 5-9 and 10-14. The 5-9 year old class will be 9:30 to 10:15 am and the 10-14 class will be 10:30 to 11:30 am. The cost is $99 for the four week session.

Email us at to get your kids signed up and please let us know if you have questions.

Workout for Tuesday, April 16
Pull Up Progressions

Jump Rope Progressions

Double Unders
Sit Ups

CrossFit 616Comment
Monday, April 15

I read the article The Psychological Dangers Of A Sedentary Life and it looks into the question of how we can actually change our less-than-ideal behaviors. Why is it that we do things we know aren’t good for us, or aren’t helping us reach peak performance?

Most therapies to help people change behavior work towards some kind of shift in consciousness. And new research suggests that physical activity can be directly linked to helping change your state of mind.

“In pushing the body, we expand the mind.”

The article is pretty short and worth reading, but I am pulling a few quotes just in case you don’t click through.

“Overcoming physical obstacles strengthens our willpower muscles, extending our capacity to master other life challenges.”

"It is not those who can inflict the most, but those that can suffer the most who will conquer."

“The key to high levels of achievement is a self-talk that embraces the discomfort of extraordinary efforts.”

By pushing through tough CrossFit workouts or other physical efforts you are training your mind to tackle other challenges in your life. It also works the other way - a positive mental approach will help your physical performance. “Our internal dialogues become destiny.”

"Do something every day for no other reason than you would rather not do it, so that when the hour of dire need draws nigh, it may find you not unnerved and untrained to stand the test."

Read the full article here

Workout for Monday, April 15
Power Clean
*Build Up with Made Sets of Touch and Go Reps

13 min AMRAP
20' DB Overhead Lunge (50/35)
10 DB Twists
Run 100m

CrossFit 616Comment
Friday, April 12

Most of you have been following Lauren’s story over the last few months, and here’s an update on her recovery from Mary Free Bed. Hopefully you read her full story, but check out the video below to see Lauren in action inside and outside the gym!

We are so proud of Lauren’s effort, and she is an inspiration to all of us to never give up and to keep working hard. Her progress has been amazing to watch and we know she’ll continue to improve as the days go by.

She’s already been in the gym a few times and we are definitely ready to see her back full-time soon. Thank you to everyone that supported her through this and we know you will continue to support her as she transitions back to an independent life.

Workout for Friday, April 12
2015 Masters Qualifier Workout
2 Rounds for Time:
Row 1,000m
50 Thrusters (65/45)
30 C2B Pull ups

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Thursday, April 11

Chad Vaughn is an Olympic weightlifting athlete and coach who actually lifted in the Olympics in Athens in 2004. He has competed in multiple World Championships and has coached numerous top-level weightlifters in the US.

He is now getting back into competing at the Master’s level and just set American records in the snatch, clean and jerk, and total (combo of both lifts) at the Master’s Nationals in Salt Lake City at the end of March.

The point of that intro is that he’s good. He’s a great lifter and a great coach. But guess what? He’s still working on things.

We all get frustrated with the Olympic lifts, or other skill movements like double unders, handstand walks, etc. I am just here to say YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE PERFECT!

No one is perfect. We all make mistakes. But the ones that get results are the ones that keep trying! Even if every clean and jerk you did Tuesday was wrong, you are still getting better because you were trying to improve every rep.

Don’t let perfection get in the way of progress!

Here’s Chad Vaughn’s video of him working on his split jerk recovery. He knows he is supposed to recover front foot first, but it just doesn’t always happen. But he’s still really good, he keep working to improve and he can enjoy working out and competing. Hopefully you can find a way to enjoy your workout and improve without getting caught up in being perfect!

Workout for Thursday, April 11
*Building Up in Weight as Reps Decrease

Open Workout 12.1
Burpees to Target 6" out of Reach

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Wednesday, April 10

So you are eating all the right foods, but not losing weight (or gaining weight, or whatever your goal is). What’s going on?

It is very easy to cheat/eat too much or too little without even knowing it. The graphic below does a great job of showing this.

Usually, once we commit to eating the right foods we have to start dialing in the correct amounts. It’s ok to make this a two-step process, but eventually quality AND quantity matter.

The little decisions made throughout the day add up. And each of those days add up to weeks and months and years. When it comes to eating to make a change in your body composition, consistency over the long term is what matters.

Check out the graphic below and think about how you prepare food. I know I am always guilty of eating a little extra peanut butter out of the jar. Do you have little cheats that add up? Do you even know?

Wednesday, April 10
Min 1: 40 Double Unders or 45 sec of Attempts / Practice
Min 2: 10 T2B + 15 Air Squats
Min 3: 20' Handstand Walk or 20 Plank Shoulder Touches

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Tuesday, April 9

I’m sure a lot of you saw this post from former CrossFit Games athlete Julie Foucher. It was shared by lots of people, but I think it’s good enough, and applicable enough, to share it again.

The message is clear in her caption, so please read it. I’ll just say to think about how this might apply to your life?

View this post on Instagram

9 years #InTheOpen gives you a lot of data to look at, and it’s always fun to see where you fall relative to the rest of the field from year to year. But these numbers alone don’t tell the whole story, do they? While the stats you see here suggest that my fitness has taken a steady decline since retiring from @CrossFitGames competition after the 2015 season (it has), what they DON’T tell you about is everything else that’s going on in my life. Since 2015, my goals have shifted from becoming the Fittest on Earth to becoming the best doctor, wife, future mom, and podcast host I can be. Rather than making daily decisions to support my training and performance, I now do #CrossFit to support my progress toward these other goals. So, while it would be easy to get caught up in these numbers and feel like I am regressing in some way, I can instead take them in context and be so PROUD of the fitness I continue to express that is allowing me to be better in so many of the other areas of my life that are now my primary focus. Enjoy the leaderboard and the objective data it allows you to track, but don’t let these numbers define your success or failure, and always keep them in the context of the bigger picture of your life and goals. WHY do you do CrossFit? WHY do you participate in the Open? If you do CrossFit to help you be a better father/sister/business partner/leader/etc then measure your progress on the father/sister/business partner/leader/etc “leaderboard” - if you are seeing progress in those areas you know your training is serving its true purpose. 2011- 5th 2012 -2nd 2013 - 167th 2014 - 14th 2015 - 11th 2016 - 133rd 2017 - 529th 2018 - 879th 2019 - 1982nd

A post shared by Julie Foucher-Urcuyo, MD, MS (@juliefoucher) on

It’s easy to just look at the numbers on the leaderboard or in your everyday tracking, but the numbers don’t always tell the full picture.

What’s going on in your life that might affect your leaderboard rank? Are you able to see the big picture and accept that while you are working on other things, your fitness may drop a bit? That is ok!

Don’t let the leaderboard or your score on a workout define you! Your Fran time may go down, but you may be “a better father/sister/business partner/leader/etc” as Julie says in her post.

Workout for Tuesday, April 9
Clean and Jerk Practice
Every 2 min for 14 min
2 Touch and Go Clean and Jerks
*Power Cleans and Push Jerks.
*Increase weight with good lifts!

Mullet Squats
1 Set = 2 Front Squats + 5 Back Squats
5 Working Sets @ 70% to 80% of Front Squat

CrossFit 616
Monday, April 8

Finally! Some real scientific evidence that shows us how important the hook grip is in the Olympic lifts.

If you are not using the hook grip in the snatch and clean you are sacrificing power, speed, and technical proficiency. Everyone thinks the hook grip is uncomfortable at first, but you just have to do it in order to perform these lifts well. Just force yourself to do it for a few weeks and you’ll get used to it and learn to love it!

Here’s a link to the full study:

Workout for Monday, April 8
For Time
Cal Row
Cal Bike
Wall Balls (30# to 10' / 20# to 9')
Strict Pull Ups
Scale Pull Ups with Strict Banded Pull Ups

CrossFit 616
Friday, April 5

Some words of wisdom from the Simpsons…

After a brief Google search I am pretty sure this is untrue (Thanks, Kennedy!), but maybe we can learn from it anyway.

Do you look at a crisis as an opportunity to learn or improve or do you just see that bad that is happening at that moment?

Any time we face adversity we have a chance to grow. Embrace that. Change your mindset and think about how you can grow from any crisis you face - just like Homer Simpson!

Workout for Friday, April 5
5 Rounds for Time
3 Rds of Cindy
1 Round of DT

1 Rd of Cindy:
5 Pull ups
10 Push Ups
15 Air Squats

1 Rd of DT:
12 Deadlifts (155/105)
9 Hang Power Cleans
6 Shoulder to Overhead

CrossFit 616
Thursday, April 4

I’ve followed Logan Gelbrich’s gym and coaching philosophy for a while now and I love his outlook on life, coaching, and more.

He recently wrote a book, Going Right: A Logical Justification for Pursuing Your Dreams, that I am excited to read. You can watch him talk a bit about it in the video below.

He points out that most of us feel like we are stuck choosing between chasing our dreams or doing what is “reasonable” in the real world.

His book is all about why chasing our dreams is the reasonable thing to do. How reaching the peak version of ourselves will allow us to better serve our loved ones, our communities, and ourselves.

Are you really going after your dreams? Are you trying express the best version of yourself? Or are you scared that if you go after those things you will sacrifice the “stability” of your day-to-day life?

This book attempts to prove you can have both. I think we can all benefit from a change in mindset on this type of thing. If we can stop worrying about the little things, we can pursue greatness within ourselves and those little things will get taken care of.

Workout for Thursday, April 4
Seated DB Strict Press
*Build Up in Weight With Good Position
*DB in each hand

Death By Double Unders + Burpees
Every Round: 30 Double Unders or 40 Single Unders
Then: 1 Burpee the First Min, 2 Burpees the Second Min
3 Burpees the Third Min...
*Continue adding one more burpee each minute
*Always 30 Double Unders to Start the minute

CrossFit 616
Wednesday, April 3

Here’s a great article from Austin Malleolo at Reebok CrossFit with some tips on what to do now that the Open is over.


I’ve written similar blog posts in the past about using the Open to assess your weaknesses and give you a plan going forward, but he does a great job of detailing four things that can get you ready for the next Open, which is in October!

Hopefully you will read the article and take a good, honest look at your performance. What were the things that held you back? Remember, it may not be the movements themselves.

Set realistic goals and ask your coaches for help on how to get there. Setting goals is great, but having a plan to get there is better. We can help with that.

There’s another Open coming in October this year because they are rearranging the Games season. This means we get another chance to test our fitness and challenge ourselves in new ways in just a few months.

So take a quick assessment of this Open and let’s be ready for the next one!

Workout for Wednesday, April 3
Pull up Progressions

12 min AMRAP
Pistol Squats Alternating Legs
*Continue Adding 2 reps to each round after 12

CrossFit 616
Tuesday, April 2

CrossFit announced that Games tickets will go on sale to affiliates on Thursday, April 4. We have access to the pre-sale that goes from April 4-8. However, we can only purchase eight Festival + Coliseum packages. We know that's not enough for everyone, but we are limited on how many we can purchase during the pre-sale. These eight packages will be available on a first-come first-serve basis on Friday, April 5. If you want a Festival + Coliseum package you will need to pay IN PERSON AT THE GYM Friday morning. We will be open at 5:45 am.

You may purchase TWO packages for you and your spouse/significant other, but no more. The tickets are $235 each.

Again, this is first-come first-serve and payment must be made IN PERSON with cash, check or credit card on Friday, April 5. We CANNOT bill your account for these.

Feel free to line up as early as you want. We will open at 5:45 am on Friday, April 5.

Here’s all the info from the CrossFit Games about tickets and the venue.

Workout for Tuesday, April 2
Snatch Practice
15 min to Build to Heavy Double
*Does not have to be touch and go!

For Time:
Row 400m
20 American KB Swings
Row 300m
15 American KB Swings
Row 200m
10 American KB Swings
Row 100m
5 American KB Swings

CrossFit 616
Monday, April 1

We’re looking for partners for the MidSummer Meltdown on Saturday, June 22. This is our annual CrossFit competition that is open to people from gyms all over Michigan and surrounding states. We will have about 100 competitors and lots of volunteers and spectators on hand.

If you have a product or service you’d like to promote please let us know. We are always looking for prizes for the winners, goodies for the athlete registration bags and more.

You’ll receive promotion on all of our social media leading up to the event and get your logo on the event t-shirt. And if there’s something specific you’d like to do let us know and I am sure we can work something out.

Thanks for your support and helping make this a great event!

Email us at to partner today!

Workout for Monday, April 1
Kipping Practice
Kipping Swing, Pull Ups, T2B

21-15-9 for Time
Thrusters (95/65)
Pull Ups

CrossFit 616
Friday, March 29

Happy Friday!

Hopefully the Nutrition Challenge is going well for everyone participating. Finding the right diet can be hard work, but it’s all about finding what works for you. There are no gimmicks. Well, there are, but they don’t work.

Eat real food, not too much, and mostly plants.

I feel like this Instagram post sums it up, hahaha!

Workout for Friday, March 29
Tempo Back Squats
5X3 @ 60% to 70%
*3 sec Down, 1 sec Pause, Stand, 1 Sec Pause at Top.

14 min AMRAP
30 Russian KB Swings (70/53)
20 Strict HSPU
10 Strict Pull Ups
*Scale HSPU w/ Piked HSPU or Seated DB Press.
*Scale Pull Ups w/ Banded Strict Pull Ups or Ring Rows

CrossFit 616
Thursday, March 28

Remember that the gym closes at 7 pm tonight! No 7 pm class but we have a full schedule including weightlifting up to then.

We have another session of 616 Kids classes starting on Saturday, April 27! Once again the younger kids (5-9) class is at 9:30 am and the older kids (10-13) is at 10:30 am. The session is just $99 for four weeks.

Kids will learn proper movement technique, how to control their bodies in space, and build coordination while staying safe. The coaches will help the kids develop skills for the real world through games and challenges that incorporate functional movement. Ultimately, they will learn to enjoy exercise while having a lot of fun!

These classes are open to kids of members and non-members of 616, so let your friends and family know. Please email us at to get your kids signed up today!

Workout for Thursday, March 28
5 Rounds, 4 minutes Each Round
40 Double Unders (or 80 Singles)
10 Sit ups
7 Burpees
30 Double Unders (or 60 Singles)
10 Sit Ups
7 Burpees
20 Double Unders (or 40 Singles)
10 Sit Ups
7 Burpees
*Each Round is a Sprint, rest remainder.

CrossFit 616
Wednesday, March 27

Remember that we will close at 7 pm this Thursday for a coaches training session. This gives us a chance to get all of our coaches together to continue to learn and progress so we can help you do the same. Full, normal schedule until 7 pm. Thank you!

And it’s Wednesday FriendsDay today so bring a friend to any class to try CrossFit for the first time!

Here’s a good blog post from Dr. Jason Ross at Train Out Pain. He discusses how all of his real learning in life has come through some sort of emotional connection to the subject. After reading it, I think I agree for myself. I really had no interest in learning anatomy or physiology in school, but once I got into training and loved it I found myself seeking out knowledge and soaking up as much as possible. It took that emotional connection for me to want to learn this stuff.

Are you the same? Can you learn something without having a connection, or do you find yourself just memorizing things to pass a test or get the job done? Is memorizing facts really learning?

Read his post here and think about how and why you learn new things: Learning is Asking an Emotional Question

Workout for Wednesday, March 27
16 min AMRAP
20' DB Walking Lunge
7 DB Push Press Right Arm
7 DB Push Press Left Arm
20' DB Walking Lunge
7 Plank Position DB Rows Right Arm
7 Plank Position DB Rows Left Arm

CrossFit 616Comment
Tuesday, March 26

Why do we hear that eggs are good for us one day and bad for us the next? Is walking good exercise or not? Should I ever sit down again?

The media loves headlines, but most of the time the “conclusions” they are referring to are nothing more than uncertain results that showed some statistical significance.

The NPR story below explains this better and details how some scientists are pushing to end use of “statistical significance” as a way to make their studies accepted into journals and receive attention and funding.

As consumers it can be difficult to follow. It’s hard to know who and what to believe and usually the “truth” lies somewhere in the middle on most subjects.

Remember that just because you hear or read something in a headline doesn’t mean it is true. Statistical significance doesn’t mean it’s true either - it’s just a way of showing there is some relationship.

Listen to the story for more information so you can better parse all of the headlines and click bait in your daily life!

Workout for Tuesday, March 26
8 min AMRAP
11 T2B
11/8 Cal Bike
11 Burpees

20 min NFT
5X50' Plank Position Sled Drag - Hand Over Hand
Accumulate 2 min of L-Sit Holds
3X10 Slow Tempo Plate Twists

CrossFit 616Comment
Monday, March 25

This Wednesday is Wednesday FriendsDay! Bring a friend to any class time to try CrossFit for the first time!

I heard Conan O’Brien telling a story about doing difficult interviews early in his career and I realized some of the struggles we see in the gym are just like what he was going through. Let me see if I can explain this to you…

He said he had a difficult guest on his show. Someone that gave short answers, didn’t seem interested and he really had to struggle through it. After the show the producer Lorne Michaels called him into the office and said to him, “People like to see you work.”

The point being is that the audience was entertained by watching Conan work through the interview. His struggle and effort is what kept people interested because he was trying.

That’s how I feel as a coach a lot. I like watching your effort and fight in a workout. I care a lot less about the result.

As an athlete, we tend to only thing about the result, but coaches, friends, family, etc care about the effort. If we could all step back and change our perspective I think we would all be a lot nicer to ourselves.

Think about it. What’s more inspiring, watching Mat Fraser do 19.5 in 6:53 or seeing someone get their first pull up in 19.4?

Sure the former is impressive, but it doesn’t hit you in the same spot as watching someone fight and scrap for that first rep. It’s about the effort.

So next time you are evaluating your workout, don’t think about the score, think about your effort. That’s what counts. That’s what makes you stronger and that is what you can be proud of!

Workout for Monday, March 25
Bench Press w/ Pause at Chest
5X3 Building Up in Weight

5 Rounds for Time
9 Power Cleans (115/85)
9 Shoulder to Overhead
35 Air Squats

CrossFit 616
Friday, March 22

The last week of the Open is here! I had a lot of fun with you all during the Open and really enjoyed watching everyone push themselves and learn a lot about themselves in the process.

Remember, we are celebrating the end of the Open at the Knickerbocker at New Holland at 8 pm Friday night. This party is for everyone whether you signed up for the Open or not. Hope to see you there!

Please review the rules and standards for 19.5 before you complete or judge the workout.

Workout for Friday, March 22
Open Workout 19.5
33-27-21-15-9 reps for time of:
95-lb. thrusters
Chest-to-bar pull-ups

Time cap: 20 minutes

CrossFit 616