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At Verve and CrossFit Rosslyn, we know that getting fit takes some serious hard work. It takes a certain mindset to make it through a tough workout while motivating yourself and others along the way. We like to recognize those who not only show growth and determination within our programming, but also inspires others to be their best!

Congrats to our client spotlight for June, Sameer AlZahrani! Sameer has excelled greatly in our Pure Strength programming since joining Verve/CFR in May 2016. With his consistency with working on the major lifts (Back Squat, Deadlift, Clean and Jerk, and Snatch) he is a true inspiration to those who want to get their lifting technique on point! Read his story below!


1) Please introduce yourself and what brought you to Verve Health & Fitness /CrossFit Rosslyn

I’m Sameer AlZahrani, originally from Saudi Arabia. I have always been interested in health and fitness. I did lift weights at various points in my life, but my programs were not optimally designed. At best, I did a 3-way or a 4-way body split that had more isolation exercises than ideal.

2) Prior to working out at Verve/CFR, what was your fitness/athletic background?

I did Brazilian Jiu Jitsu roughly from 2000 until 2013 when my oldest daughter was born. At that point, I could not keep a demanding job, a demanding sport and the family side as well; so I took a break from Jiu Jitsu.

Some of my colleagues in the office told me about Verve/CrossFit Rosslyn. I looked into it and was intrigued by the Pure Strength class. I signed my membership contract on May 5,  2016.

3) What was your initial impression after your first training session /group class at Verve/CFR?

It was love at first sight!  The Pure Strength class covers the most important lifts that any athlete should master, and a few support exercises to help improve those main lifts.  I see Pure Strength class as the ideal and most efficient way to train for busy people. A great way to get a huge fitness adaptation in a very short period is to train with intensity and explosiveness; but of course, one would need expert coaching to do that, and that is what I found at Verve.

4) What was your biggest challenge with starting your fitness regimen at Verve/CFR ? 

In my current program, we have 5 main lifts:  Squat, Deadlift, Press, Snatch, and the Clean and Jerk. The challenge has been and remains to work on the technique. It’s a never ending journey. Initially, I was focused on the basics: learning efficient squatting, deadlifting, and pressing techniques. Now I’m finding my challenge in being explosive while maintain proper body alignment in the Snatch, and Clean and Jerk.

5) Please share with us some of your proudest fitness accomplishments. 

Across the board, my lifts improved dramatically. Below is a comparison between my lifts now versus a year ago. You see an increase of over 25% in all my lifts within my first year.

1 Rep Max

Difference

May 2016

May 2017

Pounds

%

Back Squat

185

250

65

35%

Deadlift

245

305

60

24%

Press

95

130

35

37%

Snatch

65

100

35

54%

Clean/Jerk

95

145

50

53%

6) What are your favorite and least favorite exercises?

I love my exercises equally! They are all important! Categorizing the exercises as favorites, less favorites, at least for me, has an impact on what lifts will improve and what lifts will not improve. I’d rather not think that way.

7) Outside of working with the Verve /CFR trainers, what’s the biggest difference that you’ve noticed in your day-to-day life?

My posture improved a lot.  Opening the shoulders during the snatch, and overhead squats, translated into being aware of rotating my shoulders and opening the thoracic spine a bit more.

I’m also sore a lot!

8) What are your future fitness goals?

My goal is to make a small improvement every time we test the 1 rep max. I’m not competing with others. I’m competing with my past best lift. In addition, because I like to maintain longevity in the sport, I’d rather be careful not to make too much progress in a short period of time in order to avoid injury.

My benchmark for the next 12 months is to make at least 10% improvement in all 5 main lifts. If I reach that goal, I would be very happy.

9) What advice would you give to someone who is just starting their fitness journey?

First, focus on the technique. It takes years to learn proper technique. Learning to Snatch decently can take a couple of years at least!

Second, measure your progress. It’s tough to improve what you don’t measure. Use whatever system to record your workouts and track your progress.

Third, trust the process! We have the luxury at Verve to have expert coaches design our programs. Follow the program. It works!

10) Share something random about yourself! 

The real motivation for me to work on core exercise is that I don’t hurt my back when I carry my two little girls (4 years and 2 years).

Check out June’s CrossFit Foundations schedule! Foundations classes take place every Wednesday and Friday @ 6:00pm. These classes are a great way for both beginners to learn the basics and for the seasoned CrossFitter to help refresh and perfect their skills!

And remember: these classes come free with any CrossFit Rosslyn *month-to-month or *6-month term membership. They will not go against your class count! This makes it even easier to keep our athlete’s skills consistent and safe.

Check out May’s CrossFit Foundations schedule! Foundations classes take place every Wednesday and Friday @ 6:00pm. These classes are a great way for both beginners to learn the basics and for the seasoned CrossFitter to help refresh and perfect their skills!

And remember: these classes come free with any CrossFit Rosslyn *month-to-month or *6-month term membership. They will not go against your class count! This makes it even easier to keep our athlete’s skills consistent and safe.

At Verve and CrossFit Rosslyn, we know that getting fit takes some serious hard work. It takes a certain mindset to make it through a tough workout while motivating yourself and others along the way. We like to recognize those who not only show growth and determination within our programming, but also inspires others to be their best!

Congrats to our client spotlight for April, Alejandra Velilla! Since Alejandra joined the CrossFit Rosslyn family, she’s progressed in her fitness in major ways. She’s very consistent when it comes to working on the various skills of CrossFit and mobility before and after class time. Though she takes her fitness seriously, she always makes sure to have fun when working out (even when there’s burpees involved!). You can also find her hanging out and competing at our special weekend events! Read her story below!


Please introduce yourself and what brought you to Verve Health & Fitness/CrossFit Rosslyn.
I first started doing CrossFit in Cartagena, Colombia and really loved it. When I moved to the area I did some research to find the perfect place for me and found CROSSFIT ROSSLYN!! (Best decision ever).

Prior to working out at Verve/CFR, what was your fitness/athletic background?
I have always been pretty active, did some rollerskating, running and regular gym routines, but I really reached my peak with Crossfit.

What was your initial impression after your first training session/group class at Verve/CFR?
I was very impressed from the very beginning with the atmosphere at CFR. Not only were they welcoming but also because the coaches were very attentive and supportive with each WOD. I also like that classes are small.

What was your biggest challenge with starting your fitness regimen at Verve/CFR?
My biggest challenge was getting used to the technique of some of the movements.

Please share with us some of your proudest fitness accomplishments.
One of my proudest fitness accomplishments is being able to do double-unders. Thanks to Brittany for being so patient and giving me the best tips!!

What are your favorite and least favorite exercises?
My favorite exercises are double-unders, cleans and wall balls. My least favorite exercises are burpees and pull ups.

Outside of working with the Verve/CFR trainers, what’s the biggest difference that you’ve noticed in your day-to-day life?
The biggest difference I’ve noticed is having more energy during the day and also having my friends ask me to do heavy lifting “because I do crossfit”.

What are your future fitness goals?
I want to be able to do pull-ups, push-ups and rope climbing.

What advice would you give to someone who is just starting their fitness journey?
Your body is ALWAYS going to be sore. It never goes away. Embrace it.

Share something random about yourself!
My friends say I’m a really good dancer! :)

Check out April’s CrossFit Foundations schedule! Foundations classes take place every Wednesday and Friday @ 6:00pm. These classes are a great way for both beginners to learn the basics and for the seasoned CrossFitter to help refresh and perfect their skills!

And remember: these classes come free with any CrossFit Rosslyn *month-to-month or *6-month term membership. They will not go against your class count! This makes it even easier to keep our athlete’s skills consistent and safe.

At Verve and CrossFit Rosslyn, we know that getting fit takes some serious hard work. It takes a certain mindset to make it through a tough workout while motivating yourself and others along the way. We like to recognize those who not only show growth and determination within our programming, but also inspires others to be their best!

Congrats to this month’s Client Spotlight, Teddy Rojanadit! With his positive and humorous energy that he brings to our classes, Teddy Rojanadit is hard to miss! And his hard work and dedication to our CrossFit and Pure Strength programming has truly paid off. He recently hit a Clean & Jerk PR of #125! Read his story below!


Please introduce yourself and what brought you to Verve Health & Fitness/CrossFit Rosslyn.

I first encountered CrossFit a few years ago when I worked with someone that owned a gym in Old Town. She’d often badger me to come in for a class, but at that time I didn’t want to commit to something I knew little about. Over the years, I learned more and more about it from other traditional gym-goers but still never felt motivated to take the next step. Naturally, like 70% of the nation, I gave CrossFit a try as a new year’s resolution in January 2016.
Prior to working out at Verve/CFR, what was your fitness/athletic background?

I was a swimmer nearly all my childhood but stopped in high school. I prioritized sleep over 5 am practice. After gaining the freshman 60 in college (I went from 120lbs to 180lbs by the end of sophomore year), I realized I needed to get back to work and started running and exercising again. I would dread the gym, but CrossFit has given me a whole new level of motivation.

What was your initial impression after your first training session/group class at Verve/CFR?

I came for a tour prior to my first class and the first question I asked Tim was, ‘Am I going to die?’ I don’t really remember my first session/group class that much (probably because I blacked out) but I did remember feeling amazing and accomplished afterward. After the first class, I couldn’t walk for a week.
What was your biggest challenge with starting your fitness regimen at Verve/CFR?

I remember thinking to myself how out of shape I was when I first started doing CrossFit. I felt like my whole exercising life was a lie because all the coaches would tell me what I was doing incorrectly which was pretty much everything. After a couple of months and a lot of frustrations, I was able to master the complex lifts.

Please share with us some of your proudest fitness accomplishments.

I have so many proud accomplishments! But I will have to say my proudest accomplishment was probably the Memorial Day ‘Maupin’ WOD. I still couldn’t believe that I completed this workout before the 50-minute time cap. I just remember feeling like I just ran a 50k, but I didn’t.

To this day I still feel proud with every new accomplishment. Whether if it’s the best time on the scoreboard, or beating out my max weight. But I know, I’m still a work in progress.

What are your favorite and least favorite exercises?

My least favorite exercise is probably rowing and burpees. There would be days when they combine these two for the WOD and I just want to die!

I think my favorite is anything with a jerks complex – I’m not sure why but it’s so fun for me!

Outside of working with the Verve/CFR trainers, what’s the biggest difference that you’ve noticed in your day-to-day life?

The biggest difference I’ve noticed in my day-to-day life is definitely feeling more fit and healthier. Working out was always a way for me to relieve stress from work and other extracurricular. I don’t crave unhealthy food like I used to and more aware with what I consume. I’m also definitely more confident and wanting to try other physical activities outside of CrossFit.

What are your future fitness goals?

I would love to master a handstand push up and double-unders. Possibly gain 10lbs. It’s funny how hard it was when you want to lose weight and now it’s hard for me to gain weight!

What advice would you give to someone who is just starting their fitness journey?

The advice I would give to someone just starting a new fitness journey is to be patient with yourself. It takes time to evolve and learn the techniques. I know sometimes it’s frustrating when you can’t get a move right or you feel like you’re stuck. Make sure you listen to your coaches; they are the resource to achieve your goals. Also, keeping a ‘diary/journal’ of all your weights and achievements. It’s fun to look back at how much you’ve improved 6 months to a year ago.

Share something random about yourself!

I do not have a favorite color.


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Today’s WOD

  • Wednesday, 6/28/17

    WOD Push Press 1-1-1-1-1-1 then 1+ at 60% of last set of 1 *+ = max reps that you can manage with that weight. (Leave one or two in the chamber. Not until failure!) “Diane” 21-15-9 reps for time Deadlift (Rx:225#/155#, L2:185#/135#, L3: 135#/95#) Handstand Push-Ups (L2: w/pad, L3: DB Strict Press)
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