Tag Archives: kettlebell swing

Monday 13th November – Workout of the Day

It’s nearly time to re-test our lifts. Hopefully you have been following the prescription and are starting to feel the benefits. By this stage the barbell work will be feeling heavy, but keep on grinding for a litttttllle longer. Nearly there gang!

Workout of the Day – CrossFit

A) Back squat: 3 x 5, accross
*Aim to increase load 2-5kg from your last squat session.

Nearly time to re-test those lifts!

B) Seated dumbbell press: 3 x 3-4
*Aim for same weight as the 2 last week

C) 6 Rounds of:
15 Russian kettlebell swings 32/24kg
30 Double unders
*Hit this hard! This should be short and sharp

Tuesday 7th November – Workout of the day

What the hell is a Zercher Squat?

This odd looking squat variation is named after a Mr Ed Zercher, a All-Around Weightlifter in the 1930’s, best known for this style of squatting.

Ow yeah, he also had a reported deadlift of 3.45x bodyweight. Yes thats 243kg / 536lbs at a bodyweight of 79kg / 156lb!

The Zercher squat’s bar placement (held in the crook of the elbows, see picture above) offers considerable benefits over a front squat or back squat, mainly in the development of upper back and spinal erector strength.

Those who struggle during deadlifts and back/front squats due to spinal and/or upper back rounding can greatly benefit from this exercise.

Whilst a barbell is one tool of choice, odd objects like sandbags (used today) can make this movement even more of a challenge and punishing on the midline.

Remember…Strong People Are Harder To Kill.

Workout of the Day – CrossFit

A) Back Squat: 3 x 5, across

B) Bench Press: 3 x 3, build to a heavy 3

C) 10 down to 1 reps of:
Sandbag zercher squat or double kettlebell front rack squat
Between each set 10 Russian kettlebell swings 32/24kg

Workout of the Day – Structural Strength

2 Supersets
A1) Incline dumbbell flys x 10-15 reps
A2) Bent over dumbbell raise x 10-15 reps

2 Supersets
B1) Weighted ring dips x 10-12
B2) Bent over barbell rows x 10-12

2 Supersets
C1) Front squat x 8-12
C2) Sumo-deadlift x 8-12

*Rest 30 seconds between movements, and 2 minutes between sets
*All movements to be performed with the tempo 31X1 (3 seconds eccentric, 1 second pause, fast concentric, 1 second pause)

D) Midline
3-5 sets, rest as needed
Side plank with rotations x 10 per side
Single arm overhead carry, 50m per side

Workout of the Day – MetCon

For time:
800m Run
15 Sandbag to shoulder
800m Run
15 Sandbag shoulder to overhead
800m Run
15 Sandbag clean & jerks



After teaching the proper execution of the ‘high-five!!’, next week we will cover ‘chest-bumps‘…However it looks like Dean could do with working on his aim a little more.

Workout of the day
A: Box squat
– 5×5, rest 60 seconds between sets

B: 5 rounds for time
Run 160m
20 Kettlebell swings 24/16kg
20 Push-ups
– This workout has a 15 minute time cap

‘Strength’ comes in many forms….

Just to keep things at least a little nutrition based, i’ll start with a quote from the legend that is Bill Bryson and his book ‘Home’ (thanks Philly.B for winging this my way!)

….. It is not as if farming brought a great deal of improvement in living standards either. A typical hunter gather enjoyed a more varied diet and consumed more protein and calories than settled people, and took in five times as much vitamin c as the average person today. Even in the bitterest depths of the ice ages, we now know, nomadic people ate surprisingly well – and surprisingly healthy. Settled people, by contrast, became reliant on a much smaller range of foods, which all but ensured dietary inefficiencies. The three great domesticated crops of prehistory were rice, wheat and maize, but all had significant drawbacks as staples. As John Lancaster explains: ‘Rice inhibits the activity of vitamin a; wheat has a chemical that impedes the action of zinc and can lead to stunted growth; maize is deficient in essential amino acids and contains phytates, which prevent the absorption of iron’. The average height of people actually fell by six inches in the early days of farming in the Near East. Even on Orkney, where prehistoric life was probably as good as it could get, an analysis of 340 ancient skeletons showed that hardly any people lived beyond their twenties.

So sedentism (settled people) meant poorer diets, more illness, lots of toothache and gum disease, and earlier deaths. What is truly extraordinary is that these are all still factors in our lives today. Out of the thirty thousand types of edible plant thought to exist on earth, just eleven – corn, rice, wheat, potatoes, cassava, sorghum, millet, beans, barley, rye and oats – account for 93 per cent of all that humans eat…….”

If you picture ‘strength’ what do you see? Barbells loaded with bumper plates? Huge, hulking guys screaming as they wrench obscene weights off the floor? How about this, Leonid Taranekos 266kg Clean & Jerk. Two things are impressive about this video (apart from the fact its 266kg!), first is that Taranenko is so big that even that much weight on the bar looks quite small, and 2…he makes it look so easy!

‘Strength’ can come in many forms and more often than not we imagine something like the above. However, as strong as Taranenko is…I bet he cant do this!

Workout of the day

A: Clean & Jerk
– 4-6 sets of 3 reps
– USe 80-90% 1RM

B: 10 minutes, As Many Rounds As Possible (AMRAP)
12 Kettlebell Swings 32/24kg
10 Walking lunges w/ KB 32/24kg
8 Chest to bar pull-ups

Dress for success


Charlie demonstrates proper coordination, both in the overhead squat and in his colour choices. FACT: You will ALWAYS lift more if your clothes match your weights.

Workout of the Day:

6 x 3 minute intervals of
7 Ring dip
7 Box jump 24/20 in box
7 KB Swing 24/16kg

Rest 3 minutes between intervals

Meet Chris….I think?

You may know him as Chris, Tom, Dave, Jasper or perhaps (rather worryingly) Britney. Whatever name you know him by you are sure to know his face, Chris has been with Thames Crossfit for nearly 6 months and rarely a evening goes by that he does not grace the gym with his presence. Chris has taken to Crossfit with real enthusiasm and determination and the results he is getting show just how what a little dedication and effort can achieve. Not only that but his bright coloured vests are sure to liven you up during any wod! Lets me todays athlete…..

DSC_3695.JPGAge: 29

Height: 5’11”

Weight: 77kg

What do you do all day?
I write code to calculate how much trader’s lending positions are making, and then get to hear why I must be wrong.

Can you give us some of your benchmark stats?
70kg front squat, 132kg deadlift, 65kg bench press, 8kg weighted pull ups

What is your athletic history?
Triathlon, running, cycling, 10 years of snowboarding and related pain.

Biggest Strength in the gym?
I turn up a lot.

Biggest Weakness?
Anything involving a front-rack position.

What’s your drink?
A (paleo) Guinness  or a martini

What is your biggest fitness goal?
Complete an Ironman before im 35 and then make it to 36.

What do you enjoy most about Thames Crossfit?
The enthusiasm shown by everyone that pushes you to smash that killer WOD when all you want to do is bail. And listening to Wolfmother.

What are some improvements you have made since joining Thames CrossFit?
Before quitting London and going traveling, I subscribed to a special training regime I like to call “Chrisfit”. However, with limited advertising and no actual gym space I was the only member, and so being very boring it tended to have its peaks and troughs of effectiveness.

After 12 months of travel I had successfully cultivated a 37” waist and a 95kg temple based on pizza and beer, thus succeeding in creating the perfect “before” photo for my future Men’s Health cover shoot (pencilled in for September 2015 edition). But despite the obvious potential in a new “ChrisFit” poster campaign, I couldn’t be bothered to dust off the old membership card and instead looked at alternative ways of again glimpsing my toes. Crossfit was the obvious choice at the time as it shared a lot of the same letters as the old place, but given how much my attitude to training and nutrition have changed in the last 6 months I recommend CrossFit to everyone I meet. I now weigh a lot less (and not in a malnourished kind of way), and have leaned out to an Adonis like 32” waist, but it’s the new love of weights, stretching, and eating chickens that has really shocked me. I have a completely changed outlook on what fitness is and how it fits into my life, and that’s kind of more important than the cover shoot.

Any advice for those new to Crossfit?
Turn up and get involved as much as you can… its only going to help.

Most importantly, what is the greatest sport movie of all time?
Tough, but either “Thats it, Thats all” or “The Art of Flight” for inspiration or “Raging Bull”.

Workout of the day
5 Rounds for time:
10 Burpees over a KB
10 KB swing 32/24kg
10 C2B pull ups

Meet Nicola!

Nicola is a perfect example of a Crossfit success story! Since she joined Thames Crossfit Nicola has worked tirelessly and has shown a huge commitment to changing her life for the better! Her results have been fantastic and show that results can be achieved with a little hard work and determination! Well done Nicola! Lets meet this converted Crossfitter…..

Age: 32

Height: 5″4

Weight: 73kg

What do you do all day? I am a senior nurse on a neurosurgical unit at great Ormond Street children’s hospital. I look after kids from 0-16yrs with various conditions associated with the brain/spine ie, tumours, epilepsy, head injury’s. When not at work I spend the days with my 17 month old daughter, which includes swimming lessons, gymboree (a baby gym session lead by gymbo the clown) and lots of other fun stuff!

Give us some of your benchmark stats:
Max backsquat: 60kg
Max deadlift: 105kg
Claudia: 17:11

What is your athletic background? Not much really, I had lots of different hobbies as a child including swimming and horseriding, but didn’t really stick with anything then in adult life had the usual globo gym membership where I did spinning 3x week.

What are your strengths? KB swings & deadlifts

What are your weaknesses?  Gymnastics particularly pull ups, toes to bar etc. Oh and BOX JUMPS ( just take a look at my shin and ankle!)

Whats your drink? Red wine (when paleo) otherwise vodka+diet coke or in a cocktail

What is your present fitness goal? Not got a specific goal would just love to keep progressing with my fitness, keep lifting heavier and crack all the crossfit skills so I can stop scaling workouts!

What do you enjoy about Thames Crossfit: The team spirit! I love that everyone is so supportive and passionate about everyone achieving their goals athletes and trainers alike. There’s a great bunch of people at TCF and so very motivating !

What improvements have you had since joining? I have gained a much greater overall fitness level dropped 12.7kg, 1 dress size and have much more confidence in myself and my ability….theres no more I can’t !

Whats your advice to those new to Crossfit? Don’t think about it, just do it! I spent far too much time thinking about taking up Crossfit, I only wish I had found it many years ago but it’s never too late (ask my mother who’s just taken it up at age 53). Also, listen to the trainers and do what they say and within a very short space of time you will start seeing results!

Most importantly, whats the greatest sports movie? Don’t laugh but it’s karate kid 1(the original) Mr Miagi  is ace and maybe as a kid I thought Daniel son was cute. It also brings back alot of fond childhood memories, with a dad and brother both competing black belts karate was a big part of our family life.


Wax on…Wax off!

Workout of the day

21 – 15 – 9
Kettlebell swing 32/24kg
Box jump 30/24″

I’m a Lumberjack and I’m ok……..

No trees for us down at The Wharf, so we had to come up with our own style of wood chopping, The Lumberjack 20. There is an extra prize for anyone who wants to do the WOD in a lumberjack shirt today. Hell, why not wear the funny hat too.

This is how its done in Canada

This is how its done by Monty Python

Workout of the Day:

“Lumberjack 20″

20 Deadlift 125/87.5kg
run 400m
20 KB swing 2 pood
run 400m
20 Overhead Squat 50/35 kg
run 400m
20 Burpees
run 400m
20 Chest to Bar Pull Ups
run 400m
20 box jump 24”
run 400m
20 Dumbbell Squat Cleans 45llb
run 400m

The Seven


Sam showing us how to get it done on the Thrusters from the Games comp.

You will NOT want to miss this one! A recently released benchmark WOD, “The Seven”. It’s a bit of a beast…eat a good breakfast and bring your “A” game for this one.

“The Seven”
Seven rounds of:
7 Handstand push-ups
7 Thruster 60/40kg
7 Knees to elbows
7 Deadlift 110/75kg
7 Burpees
7 Kettlebell swings, 32/24kg
7 Pull-ups



The Williams family was out in force this week at TCF…All ages welcome!

A. Push press – Build to a heavy set of 3 in 15 minutes

B. 4 Rounds for time of:
5 Push press (80% of weight used in heaviest set of 3)
10 Kettlebell swings 32/24kg
15 Box jumps 24/18″
Run 400m