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Coach Justin

Coach Justin is in the house!  We will be adding two more classes starting next week, drum roll please… much request we will be adding a 6:30pm regular crossfit class Monday and Tuesday nights!  This is very exciting and a much needed class, coach Justin will be taking the lead in these classes. Again the new class times start next week so spread the word or post your comments here, we would love to hear from you.

Now it’s getting colder and colder outside and this seems to be the weather when most of us want something warm to drink! But let’s not forget to keep up our water intake.  Liquid math is your body weight x 0.5= the number ounces of water you should be drinking per day!  Hydration levels affect how fast you run, how much you lift and how you recover.  Spend the time to dial in your formula and make a conscience effort to get the right amount of ounces of H2o in.  Tomorrow’s PR starts with today’s water intake!

Tony and Jimmy H

Dr. Hawley’s Health Corner – The Infamous “Shin Splints”

Lower leg pain is a very common occurrence with those starting a new fitness routine including CrossFit.  Shin splints are a very specific type of lower leg injury that is a result of overused muscles in the lower leg.  When shin splints occur you will have pain either on the front of your lower leg bone (Tibia) or just to the inside of your lower leg.  This pain is most pronounced with jumping or running activities and is most likely associated with either overused muscles or improper shoe wear.  

With improper shoe wear comes increased stress put on your lower leg muscles to create a “stable” foot and causes tearing of the muscle fibers, most notably at the tendons.  This is the same issue you will have with muscles that are overused, most commonly associated with a drastic change in your training routine.  The proper shoe depends not only on your workout activity but also your foot type and your lower leg muscle strength.

Treatment and prevention of Shin Splints involves stretching, strengthening and daily maintenance of your lower leg muscles along with an adequate warm-up before each workout session.  

It is important to distinguish Shin Splints from some of the other common lower leg injuries such as Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome, Plantar Fasciitis and Compartment Syndrome as the treatment varies drastically.  Should you be experiencing any of the above symptoms contact your local Sports Injury Specialist for an evaluation.  

Dr. Andrew Hawley, Certified Chiropractic Sports Physician



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Jim Donohue – Before and After

I vividly remember the very moment I decided that something needed to be done. I was having trouble sleeping one night, so I put myself on the couch so I wouldn’t disrupt my wife. As I was trying to fall asleep, I remember getting the distinct feeling that my heart was not beating. I tried to find a pulse, and I could not. I was in legitimate fear that I might fall asleep and not wake up the next morning. I was 34, the father of two beautiful children. I was 5’9” and 263 lbs. I had been living an unhealthy lifestyle for quite some time. In high school and in college, I was very athletic.

When I turned 21, the perfect storm hit. Now, I could legally drink beer! Within a month of my birthday, I got my first job in sales where I was traveling daily. After a long day “on the road” there was nothing more rewarding than a nice cold beer…or two….or three (you see where this is going). There was never any energy left over for working out, and because I was just starting out in life, there wasn’t a whole lot of expendable cash for smarter grocery choices either. Fourteen years later came my sleepless night on the couch. The next day, I joined Crossfit in Southington, CT. Needless to say, from a fitness point of view, it was a big jump off the high dive, but I knew it was the only way that I would be successful. I think that every Crossfitter thinks that their box is the best, and the people with whom they work out with are the greatest, but mine TRULY are. One of the biggest obstacles I had to overcome was a severe calf pain every time I exerted myself. It was one of the first things I mentioned to one of the owners of Crossfit Southington, Bobby Vargo. He told me that he could show me how to fix that, and sure enough, that afternoon, he showed me a simple stretch, and I have not had the pain since. 

My first day at Crossfit was May 23, 2012. It is an anniversary I will celebrate every month and every year for the rest of my life. In the last five months, I have:
• lost 52 lbs
• Lost six inches off my waist (and now wearing the same size jeans I did in high school)
• Went from not being able to run a mile, to running six miles easily AND competing in my first 5k
• Not being able to do a single pull-up to doing virtually as many as I want
• Competed in my first Garage Games
• Got 248 reps on my first attempt at “Fight Gone Bad”

 I’ve come to realize that fitness and weight management truly are journeys, not destinations. And with the help of Southington Crossfit and all that it represents, I’ve been able to get on the road to health. I always had this vision of a healthier version of myself. Because of Southington Crossfit, I’m glad to say that there is no rear-view mirror in my life. I cannot, and I WILL not go back to living unhealthy lifestyle. I know I still have a long way to go, but I live every moment by a very simple motto:
Never again. 


Hello SCF!!!! I will be your slightly irritating but generally lovable blog contributor.

My name is Ellie. I love food, and crossfit. I enjoy curling up to read a good cookbook, and romantic walks through Whole Foods.  Lifting heavy things above my head makes me happy and I feel most confident when I’m covered in chalk and sweat.  I eat primarily paleo…except when I don’t, so I will be sharing recipes and tips that reflect that and just chatting about crossfit life. Because who doesn’t want to talk about Crossfit?!?

Paleo Banana Coconut “cakies” 

Okay, you ready for this?? What do you call a cake-like cookie?….a “cakie”! I know, I know, your mind is blown. In reality that term is neither original nor mind blowing, but these cakies are pretty darn close to mind blowing (especially a couple weeks into eating paleo when you start having dreams where your in a prison made completely of cookie dough and your only escape is to eat your way out…oh you don’t have that dream… me either, that would be weird.) If your still reading this, my apologies for the wicked long run on sentence. Please except this recipe as a way to make ammends.

Paleo eating means your body is feeling, working, and probably looking it’s best. Even so, as humans with our insatiable instant gratification seeking minds we sometimes are tempted to fall off the wagon and down a bag of oreos. DON’T DO IT!!!! Yup, I yelled at you. Instead eat these.

1 ½  cups Almond Flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 ripe bananas mashed (about a cup)
2 tablespoons almond butter (creamy)
1 tablespoon coconut butter softened (see note)
A dash of cinnamon
¼ cup shredded unsweetened coconut (if your not a fan of coconut flavor you can omit this and the cakies will not taste like coconut they will only taste delicious)

These are your optional ingredients: I love me some Enjoy Life chocolate chunks in these cookies…they are not strict paleo but they are dairy, soy, and gluten free. Still a much wiser choice than a bag of oreos. If you want to stay strict add whatever delicious unsweetened dried fruit you desire, I love chopped dates. Fresh mountain blueberries would probably be really good…haven’t tried that…I know what I’m making this weekend.
Note: coconut butter is not coconut oil. Artisana makes a really good organic coconut butter, you can find it at Whole Foods. It’s not complicated to make at home but it’s a bit tedious, dump 2.5 cups of unsweetened shredded coconut in a food processor and blend it until it becomes the consistency of creamy almond butter. It will take some time amd you will have to pause it and scrape the sides down over and over again but it will get there.

1)Preheat that oven of yours to a toasty 350 degrees.
2)Mix your bananas, almond butter, coconut butter, baking soda, and cinnamon. I like my emersion blender for this job, any hand mixer will do.
3)Now stir in your amond flour and fold in whatever optional ingredients you chose.
4)Once its all combined scoop heaping spoonfulls onto a partchment lined baking sheet. I press them down a little bit into about 1 ½-2 inch mounds. Bake them for 12-15 minutes or until desired doneness. Let em cool. They will NOT be crispy, remember these are cakies.
5)Consume. Try to share, it will be hard.


10-1 Thank Yous:

10) Thank you to 250+ nonmembers who came down that night to support and cheer on our athletes who did the workout. 

9) Thank you to Betsy Bailey who wrote this:

“Last night was my first time as a visitor at Southington Crossfit…Although I was awed at the level of fitness happening in that room, I was even further awed by the sense of caring and community among the athletes there! You all seemed to care more about each other than you did yourselves! Bravo to each and everyone of you!

8) Thank  you to everyone who donated money to support our gyms effort to raise money for this wonderful cause. 

7) Thank you to Shannon Piers, who put her heart and soul into the workout.






6) Thank you 2(pr) to Shannon Piers, who put her heart and soul into her fundraising efforts as well. She raised over 1700.00 dollars in 3 weeks. Out of over 1 million people that have raised/donated money to this fundraiser(over the course of 3 years), Shannon is currently 18th in the world in total dollars raised. In ONLY 3 weeks. That’s insane. She’s like the RG3 of fundraising. 

5) Thank you to Pam Lopa for volunteering her time and taking good pictures. Pam lost her mom, Melanie Backus, to cancer a couple of years ago. When you lose someone so close to you as your mother to the same thing a 3 hour event is held for, it can be very difficult. Difficult because it exposes you to all of those wide ranging emotions again. Very courageous Pam. Thank you.

4) Thank you to Brittney Decker for this:

3) Thank you 2 to Brittney Decker, probably even TY 3,4,5,6…..The video was that good. And like Pam taking pictures, nobody knew what she was up to. She just took it upon herself and put together that gem. 

 2) Thank you to Mike D. for MCing the event, and as always putting his heart and soul into the entire event from start to finish. Less than 3 weeks ago, I told Mike that we need to make Friday, October 19th a special night. Special for Shannon’s sister Tara, Pam’s mom, my mom and all the other women affected by this nasty disease. We tried our best, and based on the following numbers, it appears as if we did it SCF style:

3,099.00. Thats the total fundraising dollars raised by you all. 
1,500.00. That was our initial team fundraising goal. We more than doubled it!!!

1) Finally, thank you to all of our amazing athletes who came out and destroyed this workout. More pictures and videos will be coming shortly on a separate blog entry once i figure out how to work this fancy, new website. 

It is 8 PM Sunday, October 28 as I write this while driving(its a learned skill). I just finished packing up my household as we were forced to evacuate our condo on Cosey Beach ave., East Haven. Bengal tiger cats do not like leaving home. I have several scratches to prove it. Everyone be safe the next couple days. I guess its supposed to be a little breezy. 

1) Lindsey snatched 125 lbs and did 100 Kettlebell Swings(35 lbs) in a ridiculous time of 3:23. Someone looks like there gonna make the regionals this year…..

2) Johnny O. asked 323 stupid, nonsensical questions during classes in October. Another pr for Johnny O. Kid breaks this record monthly. Amazing, amazing performance.

3) Matt Holland did 30 bodyweight deadlifts(250 lbs) in 0.33 seconds. Unbroken. 

4) Amy did Crossfit Games Open Wod 12.4 and banged out 249 reps. That score would have put her in 12th place in the northeast for this event. I can’t wait until February 2013. 

5) Back Squat PR’s:
335- Jim H. 
305-Rob & Jeans
295-Iron Mike & Johnny O
265-Tyler & Andy
225- DJ Quick
200-Cait, nice job Cait! The 1st of many
195 -Maggie, Ellie, Steph
165-Andrea, Erica, Jess C
135-Marlis & Debbie
105-Jenny & Megan N

6) Power Clean PR’s:
225-Rob, Jim H, Evan, Tony R
215-Johnny O 
205-Tyler & Wings
195-DJ Quick & Gary
175-Jim D & Iron Mike
150-Steph (Scott’s getting a little nervous)
125-Amy & Maggie
115-Katy & Jess B
110-Marissa & Carolyn
90-Debbie, Megan Be, Marnie

7) Karen Times RX:
8:06 Maggie (w/20lb ball)
7:40 Tony
7:13 Iron Mike
7:12 Jenny
7:05 Jess C
6:40 Tyler
6:30 Ellie
6:23 Tom
6:05 Andy

8)Deadlift PR’s:
415-Mike, John, Jim H
405-6am John, Iron Mike, Wings, Isaiah
325-Scott & Jedi
285-Matt L
275- DJ Quick
255-Steph & Rosanne
245-Meg G
225-Cait, Andrea, Ellie


1) This here is Butchy Bugsbee. He started with us in early May. He was home for the summer. He spends most of the year in the woods, (somewhere in the middle of nowhere, think he said Idaho. Wherever the hell that is) hunting and digging for gold. The first day he worked out he said, “I’m no young buck(he’s 62), and I’ve had multiple knee surgeries(2 full knee replacements) over the years so I can’t do any squatting or anything like that.” And indeed, at that point he couldn’t squat. At all. Trainwreck. But we kept working with him, modifying workouts and movements, while not directly doing any squatting. And he would religiously show up 3x a week at the 12:30 class. So, one thing led to another and the picture below was taken last week. Butchy squatting 200 pounds to proper depth, with pretty damn good form! Thanks for sticking with it Butchy. That’s quite a remarkable job on your part. Along with the other usual ham-and-eggers at the 12:30 class, we wanna tell you how much we will miss you and your bandanas. And FYI- never show up at his house unannounced. Never.

2) Lloyd, Rob, James and Todd did there first bar muscleups.

3) Megan G. Bench pressed 150/1. Pr.

4) Big Matt got the gym’s first 500lb deadlift. This guy has come a long way in tightening up his form. No telling how much he will be lifting if he keeps going the way he’s going.

5) Cait got a 175 lb back squat! She may be the first female in the gym to hit a 200 lb back squat.

6) Amy and Todd ran a 5k road race in early July. Todd ran a 20 minute flat race and was top 10 in his division out of over 3000 runners. And Amy ran a sub 27 minute 5k, which is remarkable considering she never came close to finishing a 5k in under 33 minutes.

7) Chris Fields ran a sub 13 minute 3000m. Afterwards he said, “holy sh-t.”

8) Congratulations to John G. (aka El Conquistador). He is now vice president of the very elite and prestigious “I’ve completely lost my mind club”. Way to go!


9) Oh, I forget to write what Chris Fields said after he said, “holy sh-t.” He said, “that’s the fastest I have run in 12 years.”

10) Dr. Andy Hawley will be having office hours at our box Saturday mornings from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm starting August 4.He specializes in Art(Active Release Technique) and is the only Certified Chiropractic Sports Physician in town. A huge part of Crossfit involves having both hip and shoulder mobility and stability. ART work is highly effective at keeping your hips and shoulders strong, stable and firing on all cylinders. It also improves your post-workout recovery time.

CrossFit Total:
855: James
855: Matt
835: Chris Fields
810: Jeans
805: El Conquistador
775: Andy Hawley
765: Isaiah, 6 am John
755: Tony
750: Tom
745: Rob
730: John O.
400: Daneil, Cait
390: Angela
385: Brittney
360: Cristina, Wendy, Megan
335: 6 am Barb

Power Clean PR’S:
90: Pam, Marlis, Cristina
120: Megan G.
165: Johnny Cupcakes 2010, Jim D.
175: Andy Lee, Chris Frey, Angelo, Ray Guy
180: Butchy, Ken K.
195: John O.
205: Isaiah, Lloyd, Chris Fields, Tony
215: Rob
235: Justin
255: Matt

Grace times:
4:40- Lloyd (135)
4:28- Megan G, (85)
4:25- Taylor (85)
4:22- Rob (135)
4:15- Pam (65), 6 am John (115)
4:10- Rick- (135)
3:51- Stephanie
3:49- Chris Fields (135)
3:46- Brittney (55)
3:45- Roseanne (75)
3:43- Isaiah (115)
3:40- Cristina (65)
3:31- Tony (135)
3:28- James (135)
3:15- Marikate (65)
2:41- Matt (135)

Mile run:
5:43- Rick
6:30- Rob, Amy C.
6:51- Johnny O.
6:58- Tony
6:59- James
7:11- Marlis
7:20- Holly
7:25- Gary
7:31- Pam Lopa
7:32- Pam Swain, Stephanie
7:34- Jeans
7:39- Scott
7:45- Brittney
7:46- Angelo, Gina
7:51- Cristina
8:55- Jessica….huge number here. In April she ran a 13 minute mile. Now down below 9 minutes!


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"I love the encouraging environment. You can compete against the clock, others and yourself."

Mark B., CFS Member

"Squat, jump, climb, throw, lift."

Greg Glassman, CrossFit Founder

"I’ve come to realize that fitness and weight management truly are journeys, not destinations. And with the help of Crossfit and all that it represents, I’ve been able to get on the road to health."

Jim D., CFS Member

If you told me I would be able to deadlift 200lbs, do 65lb thrusters, jump onto the 20in box, make my mile time the fastest it has ever been or buddy carry my best friend over my shoulders, I would have told you, you’re nuts!

Noddie, CFS Member

As a woman, I’ve never felt more empowered or beautiful! I can’t wait to see what this upcoming year will bring! Thank you CrossFit Factory Square! ♥

Leah, CFS Member