July 11, 2008

Friday 080711

Rest Day


Enlarge image

CrossFit Games Highlights by Von Ware - video [wmv] [mov]

"Another item I want to touch on pertains to a cover story in a recent
Navy Times on Crossfit, "the new fitness craze." This is a commercial
off the shelf (COTS) program and is not tailored to an individual.
Several SMEs in the sports medicine field (military & civilian) have
addressed a concern that the program has the potential for causing an
increased incidence of musculoskeletal injuries and even muscle
breakdown (rhabdomyoloysis) and therefore is not supported by CPPD.
Granted, anyone can develop a program that's very intense but there's a
safer way of doing this for our Sailors. Additionally, any program that
names exercises after women is contrary to our Core Values."

- Captain Jon Picker, USN, Commanding Officer, Center for Personal and Professional Development, in the July issue of ENCOMPASS.

Post thoughts to comments.

Posted by lauren at July 11, 2008 4:21 PM

Thank god

Comment #1 - Posted by: Jarhead316 at July 10, 2008 4:49 PM

I expected to see more comments already

Comment #2 - Posted by: booyaacpn at July 10, 2008 4:52 PM

this is needed

Comment #3 - Posted by: Matty K at July 10, 2008 4:52 PM

Great photo. Been dying to see Nicole's legs for years. First photo I've seen of her in shorts. OK, time to put my raincoat back on.

Comment #4 - Posted by: Grayland at July 10, 2008 4:55 PM

Awesome...I was planning to rest anyway.

Comment #5 - Posted by: Jeremy at July 10, 2008 4:56 PM

No rest for me, CFT before work manana; 1250m swim after. Should be fun.

Comment #6 - Posted by: Angelo at July 10, 2008 4:57 PM

It seems he may have overlooked the most-important concept for beginners - scaling.

Whenever I begin to worry that Crossfit will be become commercialized and lose something in the transformation, something like this comes along to make me second guess if it will ever become Mainstream.

Comment #7 - Posted by: Ian at July 10, 2008 4:57 PM

Oh thank GOD.. First FULL week of Crossfit, and I am BEAT

Comment #8 - Posted by: Matteucs at July 10, 2008 4:59 PM

It's clear the Capt. is a yes man, simply towing the line. Being prior service Navy and now active duty Army, I can tell you no military service has a program tailored to an individual, let alone a decent program for a large population. What the services offer is absolute crap.

I did begin to type a rather nasty rebuttal, to vent my frustration at his idiotic comment, but Capt. Picker wouldn't be reading it so I'll focus my energy on my REAL workout.

Comment #9 - Posted by: mrscott at July 10, 2008 4:59 PM

Isn't CrossFit already commercialized?

Seems to me that's become pretty mainstream.

Comment #10 - Posted by: Júlíus at July 10, 2008 5:00 PM

Giving exercises girls' names in against CORE Navy values? I did not know that.

Comment #11 - Posted by: Lenny 45/5'10"/166 at July 10, 2008 5:01 PM

Might use this day for some "active" rest. I kinda burned out after 5k today. I don't know if it's because I was working on my form for the CnJ, or if it's my eating habits. I really need some help with nutrition. I eat too much garbage.

Comment #12 - Posted by: Julio at July 10, 2008 5:02 PM

If the Navy's idea of a fitness program is remotely similar to the Air Force's, I can tell you firsthand that ANYTHING is better than what they currently do. Take this guy's comments with a grain of salt...they're more concerned with how fast you can jog a run versus being able to drag your buddy fifty feet to safety when your heartrate is going a million miles per hour.

Comment #13 - Posted by: cmsteffen at July 10, 2008 5:02 PM

#9...you're completely right. I'm doing this because the AF PT programs just aren't up to snuff.. and i saw this in the AF Times, which is what got me interested in it.

and we are seeing higher incidents of heart disease and other health issues.

Anyway, i could see the initial concern..because it is something different...everyone is scared of difference at first

Comment #14 - Posted by: Matteucs at July 10, 2008 5:02 PM

#13..i have a buddy who can't lift is own body weight, but he maxes the AF PT test because he's got a tiny waist and can run.. let me tell you, next time i get deployed on an ILO tasking.. im hoping he doesn't come with

Comment #15 - Posted by: Matteucs at July 10, 2008 5:04 PM

It's people like Captain Jon Picker that make me ashamed to be in the Navy. It's become a bureaucracy that caters to obesity and laziness and is so politically correct that this waste of a commissioned officer has to throw in a sentence condemning the fact that our workouts have girl's names. Maybe someone should bring to his attention all the SEALs that also have workouts named after them who are probably rolling over in their graves right now. Thank you for linking his e-mail address, hopefully he gets a lot of e-mails about this.

Comment #16 - Posted by: James at July 10, 2008 5:05 PM


If there's anything I've learned, it's that somebody in power who doesn't want to adopt a new program/idea/whatever will find a way to do so. The reasons's given aren't all that important... actually, it's usually the most obvious reason, and in CF's case that's Rhabdo.

Not sure about the "core values" comments... seems like that could get a guy in power into some hot water, but it probably won't, because he'll say that CF naming workouts after women is somehow exploiting them.

Whatever. Screw that guy. If he doesn't like CF, he doesn't have to do CF.

Comment #17 - Posted by: Jared at July 10, 2008 5:07 PM

Why do I have a feeling this guy's going to come back to work in the morning and have sixteen thousand seven hundred and thirty two eMails in his inbox?

Comment #18 - Posted by: Matt DeMinico at July 10, 2008 5:08 PM

Hasn't the navy always affectionately referred to their ships as "she" or "her"? Why should a WOD named after a woman be against their Core Values?

When the navy starts customizing a program to individuals that is half as effective as CrossFit, then he'll have something to say. Haven't all the military's programs always been structured for the masses anyway? Best to take the best one ever--CrossFit!

Comment #19 - Posted by: MikeFB at July 10, 2008 5:09 PM

So far as I see his comments having an impact on Crossfit, is that it's going to keep out all the wimps from trying something that's just too hard for their poor heart to take. It's been said before, only the strong survive.

Comment #20 - Posted by: Sean at July 10, 2008 5:09 PM

Yea this Capt. doesnt know what he is talking about i think ill stick to the tips form cross fit!

Comment #21 - Posted by: welcho at July 10, 2008 5:09 PM

Also, I'd be honored as hell to have a workout named after me, as I'm sure all the women here would. This guy obviously doesn't know the background of some of the names...

Besides, I'm always entertained by the offhand comments about the Girls...and how they're like a bad ex...you know she'll hurt you, but you just can't stay away... :)

Comment #22 - Posted by: cmsteffen at July 10, 2008 5:10 PM

Oh, and one more thing... you know what's another excellent way to get a musculoskeletal injury?


Comment #23 - Posted by: Jared at July 10, 2008 5:10 PM

Leave it to the Navy (HQ) to say something like that)I have no issues with Sailors (disclaimer),

I tell you what, we in the Army need a program like XFIT because we are in the fight (like the Marines) and we need the core exercises to maintain the operations (OPTEMPO) of all the deployments. Ware our body armor for a day and you will soon find yourself in a world of hurt after about 10 minutes in 130 degree temps. Ask all the civilians that we gear up and take on patrol. I think the Navy is missing the boat........................

Comment #24 - Posted by: JJ at July 10, 2008 5:11 PM

The good CAPT forgot about the HERO workouts, Michael comes to mind. My wife is reading over my shoulder and is offended at the suggestion.

Comment #25 - Posted by: chrisb at July 10, 2008 5:12 PM

I doubt the Capt. has done any real PT in quite a while. Love the post by #13...who gives a flippin crap how many full sit ups I can do in 2 minutes? I prefer to know that if I EVER need to get a person out of a situation, I am fully capable of doing it.

"Hold on there shipmate, I can't lift that heavy object off of you because the Navy says sit ups are all I need to keep me squared away!" Sheesh. I'm prior Navy, married to Navy...I see active duty personnel every day that are pitiful excuses for service members. Most of them I see sitting at the fast food drive thru. I play softball with about 17 active duty women...I am smaller and stronger than every one of them. I still get asked if I am active duty, especially in the gym. It makes me sick. CrossFit is an awesome program that has changed my life and my only problem with it is that I didn't find it sooner!

Comment #26 - Posted by: Shannon 33/F/5'6"/154 in MD at July 10, 2008 5:12 PM

What does the name of a workout have to do with "Core Values"? Are they afraid it'll make the sailors horny?

What's next, CrossFit...don't ask, don't tell!

Comment #27 - Posted by: knholm at July 10, 2008 5:12 PM

This is going to be indeed an interesting discussion.

My favorite part of the quote is:
"Granted, anyone can develop a program that's very intense".

Comment #28 - Posted by: Leonid S. at July 10, 2008 5:13 PM

I would never want to say anything against any of our heros in uniform, but... this guy ain't bright. I know a number of active military and LE and they all swear by it - if anything, they want more of their colleagues involved!

Perhaps he wants to open a 24 Hour Fitness in Iraq? :)

Comment #29 - Posted by: Jeff at July 10, 2008 5:14 PM

My chiropractor was trying to tell me a lot of the exercises I do are not very safe. And that sit-ups were never safe, same with knee-to-elbows, back extensions, and some other exercises. He said shoulder press should be a seated military press, and much more. I said he did not understand the program and that the goal was to make the body function well as a whole. Hopefully he isn't right...

I think we all need to just be very aware of our limitations and exercise caution when maxing out or at the end of a tough workout when fatigue sets in.
If anyone is in the medical field and can give us honest, non-biased opinions (i'm not sure if that is possible for crossfitters like myself) on whether crossfitting with correct form is dangerous, it would be appreciated even though i'd probably keep doing crossfit regardless of the said consequences on my body. I'm young and possibly foolish. But i know I love crossfit.

Comment #30 - Posted by: soccerman m/22/180 at July 10, 2008 5:14 PM

Seriously, he just said named workouts as females is contrary?!?!?!


They name tactical areas in Iraq after women who have had sex with President Clinton. They name them after porn stars. They name them after some of the dirtiest women (granted quite good looking) on the planet. Yet that can slide, but naming a workout "Mary" is so contrary to what the Navy stands for he has to say something.

CrossFit also names Hero workouts off people who have made the ultimate sacrifice, but of course, no balls to say that.

And people wonder why I wanted to get out of the fighting command in the Air Force and head on over to the training command. I'm really tired of out of touch higher ups.

Comment #31 - Posted by: Angry G at July 10, 2008 5:14 PM

If your ancestors were gatherers that picked berries and ran to survive you will always be a pathetic creature that runs from adversity. To all those who come from hunters and warriors keep on fightin! Crossfit will take you to levels you never thought you could go.

Comment #32 - Posted by: Ben Hymas at July 10, 2008 5:14 PM

Technically, I shouldn't say anything because I'm sure that this Captain is somewhere in my potential Chain of Command. But I don't understand how calling a workout "Fran" distracts me from "my" core values of Honor, Courage, and Commitment.

Pretty sure I've still got the Honor to say, "I didn't complete that pullup, do one more." The Courage to even attempt half of these workouts and the Commitment to keep going and push myself harder.

In fact, it seems pretty sexist to me to even say something like that.

And by the way, for references since I saw it mentioned, the Navy Physical Readiness Test (PRT) expects roughly a 10 minute mile and a half, 50 pushups and 50 sit ups in order to score a "passing grade" for a male, age 20-25.

I've seen and done the mandotory PT sessions that the Navy has it's sailors do... the only reason anyone breaks a sweat is because they insist on doing it while we're crossing the equator. That's safe and better somehow? I think not.

I tried looking up the article in Encompass, but I couldn't find the July issue of it.

I'll be damned the day one of my Chiefs tell me that I'm not allowed to do Crossfit. This is the most fun I've had working in my entire life.

Comment #33 - Posted by: AT2 Kelsey at July 10, 2008 5:14 PM

Sweet video.

Comment #34 - Posted by: Philip Mancini at July 10, 2008 5:19 PM

I read that article and it is plain to see that the Capt. is a weak b*tch to say the least. I have been doing crossfit for over 2 years now and have adapted it to my increased levels of endurance as time progressed. Not only did I increase the harshness of these workouts, but made them almost unbearible. My muscles didn't explode into my bloodstream and I don't have any negitive long term effects, other than being jacked. I will continue to promote this under-vauled and misunderstood means of exercise to all military and civilians alike. Take it for what its worth.

Comment #35 - Posted by: H2owoodley at July 10, 2008 5:22 PM

Ref comment by Capt Picker

CrossFit is not a "commerical off the shelf" program. As this web site testifies:

There are no advertisments or popups. There are no fees required to use this remarkable resource. Free of charge a daily WOD is posted that anyone can use as guidance for working out. Need information on a technique for a lifting exercise, nutrition, injuries? Anyone can ask a world of amatuer athletes for information on the message board. CrossFit encourages an individual to establish his/her own garage gym, hardly a commerical enterprise. And, people are told to scale a WOD to their capabilites. In fact, it is one of the most remarkable aspects of CrossFit that it's commerical potential is so great, but Greg Glassman has never exploited that potential.

Capt Picker's comment that naming a WOD after a women is contrary to the Navy's core values is puzzling. Hasn't the military including the Navy named planes, bombs etc after women? Remember the Enola Gay? or pictures of pin-up girls painted on the sides of planes flying off aircraft carriers?

Injuries are a concern and I would like to see more emphasis on injury prevention. Never-the-less, the ability of CrossFit to pull the best out of people, beyond what they would do on their own, makes CrossFit in my opinion a valuable assest to the military and one the Navy should take full advantage of.

Comment #36 - Posted by: Ken_Davis at July 10, 2008 5:23 PM

CrossFit is fuctional and has saved many great men and womans lives in combat and on the streets as a law enforcement officer. I have been doing it now for 3 months and have never felt stronger, faster, or in better condition. For a Capt in the Navy to make those remarks is pure ignorance. Thanks CrossFit for keeping our great sheepdogs safe from the wolves.

Steve M/35/5'7/167

Comment #37 - Posted by: SteveSRT at July 10, 2008 5:23 PM

Ex Navy here, though it was a long time ago. My guess is that this officer has done none of his own exploration of Crossfit, he is simply parroting what an underling told him. Said underling doesn't understand Crossfit, or fears their ability to compete, or somehow has their own identity/rep tied to the current workout programs.
I hate condescending commentary from ill informed people. STFU.

Comment #38 - Posted by: Ken Smithmier at July 10, 2008 5:23 PM

Sounded like some pretty un-informed comments to me. I've likewise been extremely dissatisfied over the years with the majority of Army PT I've done. Like so many things that are great, there will always be doubters, usually backed up by little or no facts. Scaling will prevent the injuries he mentions. The comment about WODs named after girls is laughable. Maybe he should try a few and then comment.

Regardless if the Army (and obviously not the Navy) ever adopts Cross Fit, I'll continue to push hard and try to live up to the standards of the elite athletes on this site.

Comment #39 - Posted by: Pete Mielo at July 10, 2008 5:24 PM

That guy doesn't understand CF. If he did he would understand the "Girls", he'd get that jumping right into CF is a bad idea for almost everyone and he'd get that his sailors would be better prepared physically then your standard Military PT would/could get them.

and that video is awesome... one of the best I've seen in a while.

Comment #40 - Posted by: Derek at July 10, 2008 5:24 PM

I guess I really should ask my mom's permission before I continue with crossfit...

Comment #41 - Posted by: Matt Murdock at July 10, 2008 5:26 PM

Yeah! check out Jon Picker's idea of a good workout for sailors. Navy News June, 30th 2006. Page 2 features a pic with him and Gilad from Bodies in Motion. Clearly, very intense, but hey! low risk of injury! lol. whatever.
yeah, i was going to post a clearly thought out reply but figured "why waste my time?" I think these pics say enough. i'm gonna try to post this link. hope it makes it in the post, and isn't against the rules. if it doesn't you can google search it. seems like may be called RIMPAC as well or something. i don't know. its funny.

Comment #42 - Posted by: Nathan at July 10, 2008 5:29 PM

I suppose everything he said is true. It may fit the definition of a COTS program (I don't know). Several SME's probably have addressed the cited concern, and the program may very well therefore not be supported by CPPD (no idea what that is). I'd be interested in knowing why he thinks there "is" (an awfully definitive word) a "safer way of doing this".

Also, I do not know the Navy's Core Values, and I therefore do not dispute that "exercises" (meaning "workouts", presumably) named after women is against them. I wonder, however, if it is within the bounds of the Core Values to have acronyms for workouts that would, by coincidence of course, spell words that some people use to name their daughters.

Comment #43 - Posted by: Kevin at July 10, 2008 5:30 PM

All I have to say is that the Navy PT I am forced to go through is the worst crap ever

Comment #44 - Posted by: michigan at July 10, 2008 5:31 PM

I am a Drill Sgt. in the U.S. Army and have worked with all the branchs of service. The reason the Capt. made the uninformed comments that he did is because the PT programs in the military are designed to keep individuals from getting hurt. Do to the fact that most of the individuals joining are over weight or extremly out of shape from years of sitting on there ass playing video games. So they need a program that will get soldiers in shape with out a high risk of injury. But has I said before the comments are uninformed if you lokk at the Army's new PT program for soldiers in basic training Standrdized Phyiscal Training (SPT) you see a very scaled down crossfit style of workout.

Comment #45 - Posted by: Duke at July 10, 2008 5:33 PM

When I was active duty NAVY I got into quite a bit of hot water when I wrote the top dog a letter outlining how I thought it was ludicrous that my Command Master Chief had a medical waiver precluding him from partaking in the annual fitness test but who was still allowed to go on deployment, work his normal duty hours and even retire with full benefits. Having also been the lead physical fitness instructor for the Federal Air Marshal Service (I won't tell you which office but it was one of the big ones...) I can tell you that the people in charge are VERY hard to convince that change is needed. The old standard of judging fitness according to government standards is...well, a joke. It is still broken down by age and gender and waivers are available to anybody who pursues hard enough. I always thought it was a joke that a 40 year old man needed to run half as fast as me but would receive the same paycheck as me (No thanks buddy, I'll drag YOUR partner out of the line of fire...)
The Captain in question is doing nothing but holding up the old guard in his quest for promotion. I say, "Ignore him, keep CrossFitting, and don't forget to pat him on the ass when you pass him on the run, and ask him how fast he did Linda"

Comment #46 - Posted by: Rauterki at July 10, 2008 5:35 PM

I will get in the 10k on Sunday am as that is a run day for me.

So today did one from Crossfit Victoria BC:

C & J (75#) 21-18-15-12-9-6-3
Burpees 3-6-9-12-15-18-21

This is now definitely a favorite of mine! What a workout :)

Comment #47 - Posted by: in8girl at July 10, 2008 5:36 PM

Navy core values-
I think everything about Crossfit sums up these values.

Comment #48 - Posted by: ScottCSPF at July 10, 2008 5:37 PM

I actually live in Navy Housing next to NS Great Lakes where the Navy does all their basic training. This is probably universal in all services (as well as everywhere else) but whatever standardized training the military offers (I'm ex-Army) just doesn't cut it. The Sailors/Soldiers who are in good shape are those who take personal responsibility for their fitness and do their own workouts in addition to organized physical training. Those who don't, especially those not in primary combat specialties tend to get a little chubby.

To use myself as an example, I had about a 225 average Army PT score before I ever heard of Crossfit. After just 2 months of WODs, I lost 22 pounds and scored my first 300 (328 extended scale).

Like we say in med school, medicine is based on EVIDENCE.

viva la crossfit!

Comment #49 - Posted by: MattAndrewsGreatLakes at July 10, 2008 5:38 PM

One more reason the approach of retirement doesn't bum me out as much as it used to. Contempt prior to investigation and quick dismissal of new (and, btw, excellent) ideas is one characteristic of poor leadership....not to mention mindless adherence to the doctrine of political correctness.
FEP'ers are a drain on my time and resources, and our taxpayer dollars. I'm all for a way of better way of forcing them out of their welfare status.

Comment #50 - Posted by: LDO at July 10, 2008 5:38 PM

Navy Core Values? Does anyone remember Tailhook '91? Gimme a break...

Comment #51 - Posted by: FFChad_M/37/6'1"/215 at July 10, 2008 5:39 PM

I don't know about the Navy. But the Army's PT program is sorely lacking. I have never heard any negative feedback from anyone in the military until now.I have however seen the Navy's pt test(Not too terribly different from the Army) and if anyone thinks that 2 minutes of Push ups, crunches, and a 1.5 mile run are indicative of overall fitness, they are sadly mistaken.

You want to decrease instances of musculoskeletal injury? Start certifying all NCOs and overcome the ignorant mentality of push as hard as you can with little attention to form. I've seen guys blow their shoulders doing Army-style push ups. I want to see hip pocket classes on proper snatch technique,or the benefits of adding motions and exercises outside of your normal needed range, or the concept of a rest day. Teach a man to fish. Don't just feed him.

Honestly, if I hear the words, "two minutes of-the situp" one more time, I am likely to lose my friggin mind. Our Army's(I'm talking about the field manual, not anyone's pt plan in particular) pt program is archaic at best. I know I'd rather fight with 1 strong capable crossfitting soldier, than any three ate-up marginal passing Army pt test takers. Strong body, strong mind, strong heart.

I think the brass would do well to listen to the Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, and Airmen. If they did listen, they would hear one word. Crossfit.

Comment #52 - Posted by: Wesley at July 10, 2008 5:39 PM

Very interesting Capt? Didn't we end WWII by dropping an Atomic Bomb from an aircraft called the Enola Gay? I don't think that really affected both of my grandfather's "core values". If fact i remember them telling me stories of how thrilled they were.

Comment #53 - Posted by: Robert at July 10, 2008 5:39 PM

Were there any incidences of rhabdo at the Crossfit games? I suspect not.

If there were none, experiment over, injury theory is shite.

Brad Hirakawa

Comment #54 - Posted by: Brad Hirakawa at July 10, 2008 5:40 PM

I almost feel sorry for the guy because he just made himself look like a moron and completely ignorant in front of potentially thousands of service men who regularly do CrossFit.

The thing is, you can't argue with results. You can ignore them as he did, but you can't refute empirical evidence that CrossFit is among the top fitness programs out there.

Just last week I got a new PR in a 5k race (21:36). Someone asked me how much I run a week. I just kinda laughed. The only running I ever do is in a CrossFit workout.

Thank you, CrossFit!

Comment #55 - Posted by: Matt Laney at July 10, 2008 5:40 PM

Capt. Jon Pickler is a douche, since when does the military individualize anything, you are GI once you hit Basic. O well, we have real officers like Lt Col Dan Wilson USMC, that realize it works for most personnel in this line of work. I would like to see the full article that the quote came out of though.

Comment #56 - Posted by: Angelo at July 10, 2008 5:41 PM

I am a Drill Sgt. in the U.S. Army and have worked with all the branchs of service. The reason the Capt. made the uninformed comments that he did is because the PT programs in the military are designed to keep individuals from getting hurt. Do to the fact that most of the individuals joining are over weight or extremly out of shape from years of sitting on there ass playing video games. So they need a program that will get soldiers in shape with out a high risk of injury. But as I said before the comments are uninformed if you look at the Army's new PT program for soldiers in basic training Standrdized Phyiscal Training (SPT) you see a very scaled down crossfit style of workout. But still is no where near intense enough to prepare soldiers for todays battle field.

Comment #57 - Posted by: Duke at July 10, 2008 5:41 PM

Couldn't resist, sent the good Captain the following email, thought I would post it here. First time I was ever able to shoot my mouth off to a Captain and get away with it.

Old corpsman here Captain, honorable discharge 1975.
You called Crossfit an off the shelf product not tailored to individuals. Nothing could be further from the truth, and your statement makes me think you have taken some bad info from someone and not looked into it yourself.
Any program, including CF, can hurt someone if not done properly. I am 53, I guarantee you I have to scale both weight and reps to be appropriate for my age and fitness level. I have been doing this since April 08 and have not been in this good of condition since boot camp, and I have never had more fun.
I don't know why some workouts are named after women, but the women I work out with don't even notice. I hope you also know that some workouts are named after soldiers who have died in Iraq and Afghanistan and we proudly do every rep no matter how long it takes.
I will tell you what I tell all my runner and bodybuilder friends: try this for a month and tell me if you are more fit, more completely, in less time compared to anything you have every done.
Last point: too many military guys are sold on this already, the lack of your endorsement will have no effect.
Best of luck to you.

Ken Smithmier

Comment #58 - Posted by: Ken Smithmier at July 10, 2008 5:41 PM

Capt who?????
Notice the guy is from the Personal Development area. He's into head games & probably forgets the physical. Any one of us who's thrashed out a WOD at intensity knows how much you have to use your head to push your body through it.
CF is the type of training a lot of elite forces (military, polices & fire etc) use in many parts of the world so in that regard he's out of step with a hell of a lot of people.
If I was under attack in Afghanistan, I couldn't give a crap what my buddies run time was if he couldn't carry his weapon & use it as well.
As for girls - it's only in the last 30 years or so ships had guys names. Traditionaly sailors always gave their ships female names.
Captain whatever should crawl back under his desk & stay nice & safe.

Comment #59 - Posted by: Graeme at July 10, 2008 5:42 PM

Guys like that CAPT are exactly why I went USMC out of the Naval Academy 7 years ago. The navy is full of such weak minded and bodied people these days that their forefathers who actually did fight turn in their graves. They are slaves to the status quo and the biggest self-licking ice cream cone in the history of warfare (the carrier-centered surface navy).
I'm on my third tour to Iraq and the only Navy I've seen are SEALs, docs and SeaBees. Funny, I see pleny of rivers and lakes around dying to be patroled by some boats. Nice warfighting organization CAPT! I say we name another dirty girl workout after Capt Picker. Wait, that would be demeaning to our awesome ladies and be against Crossfit values of being strong in mind body and spirit. Have a fine, fat and weak Navy day CAPT!

Comment #60 - Posted by: BURL at July 10, 2008 5:43 PM

let's be sure and remaing politically correct while canada's army gets better, stronger, faster. maybe they'll bail us out when we run out of gas on the frontlines. good lord. do we not name hurricanes after women???

Comment #61 - Posted by: mtvet 43 m 6' 205# at July 10, 2008 5:47 PM

I am a former Marine and personal trainer, I have recently got into crossfit and it will definitely be my next certification, it blows away anything I have done so far. You would think all the military services would seek the best training possible for their troopers, at least individual soldiers can access the site and hopefully spread the word to their brothers and sisters in arms.

Comment #62 - Posted by: kurt fasse at July 10, 2008 5:48 PM

That is just plain ridiculous, Capt Picker. But we Marines appreciate the transportation nonetheless. We'll let you know how the fight goes.

Additionally, it is common military naming convention to assign street and other TRPs alphabetic names, often with female names running in one direction and male names in another. I guess everyone in Fallujah was bucking your core values, too..

Comment #63 - Posted by: stephen at July 10, 2008 5:49 PM

No stressing about it. I can't remember who said it, but "You have to do it to get it." Don't worry about pushing it on people, the ones that you want in the community are the ones who discover it for themselves and internalize the "core values" of Crossfit.

There will always be naysayers, just keep doing what you are doing fokls, you are all an inspiration.

Comment #64 - Posted by: mattb at July 10, 2008 5:51 PM

He clearly mentions how he dislikes the workouts named after Women and CrossFit is somehow bad because of it, but what about the workouts named after fallen Hero's? As a former Marine, CrossFit has always inspired me greatly on many levels and is in no way against any values I hold dear.

Comment #65 - Posted by: Tim H. |ATX| at July 10, 2008 5:51 PM

Jeff, post #4, right?

Soccerman #29, I've never been an actor on TV but I play a doctor in real life every day. If you explicitly follow all of the suggestions here at CF, or even better visit an affiliate, CF is safer than most, if not all other significant training programs, and clearly has a lower injury rate than such adult sport activities as soccer, tennis, etc.

Boy, wouldn't now be the perfect time to hear from Colonel Dan? How about an invite to the Crossfit Military Games? And you know, I just bet that Dale Saran (Marine) and Apolloswabbie (Navy) will have a thought or two.

Comment #66 - Posted by: bingo at July 10, 2008 5:51 PM

Oh, Captain Jon Pickler, you are MINE.

First off, I welcome you to come to DC and try to square off against me in a WOD. Bring your best game. I'm ready for you, and will remove your dubious little manhood in an almost undetectable slice of my rock hard CrossFitness. Contact me, challenge me, but just be a man & own it in public when I kick your flabby posterior chain.

I MFG learned CrossFit from two Navy SEALS and two Army Green Berets. Those guys literally depended on X-Fit for their lives. And, yes, they were enlisted, and scoffed at moronic Occifurs like Captain Picker. Jon, don't be an old man. Try something new. Sushi isn't disgusting. Mojitos are fun, and beer is ordinary. And dude, it's okay not to tuck your shirt in, and for God's sake, don't wear a belt with your jeans.

I started CrossFit as a weak sorry woman with "rape me" written across her forehead. The USAF scored me at 100% on my fitness tests. Idiots. I deployed and had the worst time of it. I started hiding behind the meanest, toughest and strongest men I could find. Low & behold, they introduced me to CrossFit. Now, not two years later, people hide behind me.

And, I'm still a tiny little beauty. Come on, Jon, try me. Show me you have a pair like the big CrossFit Tango Killers I deployed with. Or, admit you are a pink plastic swiss ball bouncing, cardio spin sissy in spandex "workout" clothes that you bought way back in the 80's. Such jackassery is rare, and I'm dying to meet you. lets get it on film. If, for some viral hemmoragic fever complication I don't make the workout, I'll send my 14 year old superior, Kallista.

poor old guy. i'm going to hand him his @$$. And the funniest part? I'm in the bottom 2/3rd percentile of the fittest crossfit women at the Games. yep. I'd love to see what fellow tiny girl hottie Jolie (or Jodi Bainbridge) would make of him. Let alone what the giant CrossFit beastie monster women that won the games would do to him.

I'm cracking up at someone telling Tonya Wegner that what she's doing is hurting her. Jeezis??? did you SEE that woman? INVINCIBLE. She just gets stronger and fitter every day. Gillian? Caity? The top 3 grrlz would crush Jon. And, frankly there's no need to pull out any of the men on him. Poor ol' Capt Jon would soil his trousers at the sight of Jeremy Thiel. That dude's a tiger in a human suit.

In the 1.75 years I've done CrossFit, I've never been hurt. Yes, I'm injured, but that was from running. Not CrossFit. I've never met anyone who was injured from CrossFit. I do know guys who are down for the count. They got tooled by gunfire, rugby or severe blunt trauma. But, CrossFit isn't going to kill you. It's going to make you amazing, beautiful, timeless, strong, invincible, and indefatigable. Who doesn't want that?

oh, yeah, Jon doesn't. he likes spin. he likes wearing a heart monitor. he likes whatever little tiny measurement that makes him feel like a better man than he is.

there is no excuse. there is no weight class. there is no age class. fight like your life depends on it because it does. jon only wants to be honorable mention in the short bus category of 50 year olds in the clydesdale division. there is no excuse. jon, you are inexcusable. leave the rest of the Navy alone so they can be fit to fight.

Coach is redefining each and every possible parameter of fitness. He's the genesis of every single blessing of my life, and the reason why my friends survive. I love you, Greg.

i also loved being with my CrossFit brethren this weekend. I felt anguish that my time with them was over. As my beloved & smart as hell coach Russ Greene said upon our entering a civilian restaurant for a post-games meal and seeing how hideous and fat and weak the every day
American clientele was: "Karen, we've re-entered the real world, and I don't like it".

I don't like worlds where the Capt Jons get to tell us, the beautiful super fit super athletes, how to train, or tell us how to measure ourselves. I hate their yardstick, and find them repulsive. Jon, for God's sake, shut up and try to do no more harm than you've already done.

Comment #67 - Posted by: Spider Chick at July 10, 2008 5:56 PM

Pathetic. This guy has no clue. I have done 6 years active duty and a total of 12 including Reserve time in the Navy and I have NEVER found the Navy PT program to be challenging let alone effective. If he thinks this way about CrossFit then what does he say about BUDS training?!? Seriously...these guys at BUDS are FORCED to do more than what their bodies can probably handle safely. What's the difference between that and CrossFit for some fat Navy Chief Petty Officer that carries around a coffee mug with 3 spoonfuls of sugar? Okay, maybe a SEAL candidate is a bit more physically fit than that fat ass Chief but really, come on. I get tired of seeing my fellow sailors bitch about the PT standards then go out and eat a double quarter with cheese at McDs and then complain further when they're put on mando PT.

I love CrossFit and I DARE the Navy to punish me for doing a workout that is named after a woman and say that I'm guilty of damaging government property (ie my own body) when in fact I'm PROTECTING it. When I score my first 300 on my next PT test in October I'll be sure to send Capt Picker an email and say that I did it at the age of 35 because of CrossFit and NOT the so called physical training that the US Navy offers.

And God help the Chief's Mess when I make E-7. All I know is that they better be prepared to make a move in the right direction when it comes to setting the bar for our junior sailors and the officer community.

With all due respect...get a life Captain.

PO1 Craig DeMattia
NR NIOC Greensboro
Navy Surface Rescue Swimmer class of 1996

Comment #68 - Posted by: Craig in NC at July 10, 2008 5:56 PM

...that's why i joined the Air Force

Comment #69 - Posted by: sleeveless in seattle at July 10, 2008 5:57 PM

Awesome video

Comment #70 - Posted by: Michael Blazek at July 10, 2008 5:57 PM

Just like a typical Navy Captain who has spent too much time hiding out in the halls of the Pentagon, instead of in the dirt where that policy is implemented. Drop him off in the middle of Baqubah and see how well his "I run three miles a year, a mile and a half at a time" PT program works out for him. I'll keep drinking the Kool Aid so I can keep Soldiers alive.

Comment #71 - Posted by: MBO at July 10, 2008 5:59 PM

I would like to see what kind of shape this O-6 is in. I do the WODs, just before I do navy PT. PT makes for a good cool down. When it is my days to lead it, other folks are glad that I started Crossfit, cause I am too tired to smash 'em.

Comment #72 - Posted by: Mad Max at July 10, 2008 5:59 PM

I might give this CPT the time of the day if his life depended on fitness i.e. a SEAL. I ask coach to share his emails from the Doctors who support the SEALs, Green Berets, Rangers, and other Special Ops guys who life ABSOLUTELY depend on fitness. These Doctors and their commanders have written to thank coach personally, I am sure of it.

Comment #73 - Posted by: Kip at July 10, 2008 6:01 PM

People are always afraid of what they don't understand because it forces them to face the fact that they don't know it all. Clearly based on his response he never truly investigated CF outside reading a NY Times article from a few years ago and glancing at the website. He might need to speak with Dan Wilson.

Comment #74 - Posted by: dan colson at July 10, 2008 6:01 PM

That video was AWESOME. I love the wide variety of people and the intensity. I'm totally pumped!

For maybe the first time ever, I actually feel like doing Thrusters! Like, right now!

Comment #75 - Posted by: vks3 at July 10, 2008 6:03 PM

He is talking about fleet sailors. If you're on the fleet, chances are you're working your ass off and don't have any energy or interest in crossfit.

"black shoe black shoe, I'm in doubt, what's that fat gut all about

is it whiskey

is it wine

I think it's lack of PT time"

old BUD/S song.

Comment #76 - Posted by: Joe at July 10, 2008 6:08 PM

Awesome video. Hope to attend next year.

Comment #77 - Posted by: RV-KY at July 10, 2008 6:08 PM

i wonder if this Captain has ever done crossfit. as an army CPT i strongly recommend this workout to everyone i come across. i guess that's why the navy isn't "ARMY STRONG!"

Comment #78 - Posted by: jg at July 10, 2008 6:10 PM

This is the email I sent him. I am not sure if he will return it. I'll let people know if he does.


Aloha Captain Picker,

I think that you a been given a poor presentation of what the Crossfit Program is. I understand you must be a very busy man and cannot do in depth research on every topic that comes across your desk. I truly understand the importance of fitness in the military being a veteran myself and I also train many members of the Navy here at my facility. If I could get your phone number I would love to donate my time to quickly answer any of your questions on what a professional strength and conditioning coach does so that you may have a clearer picture of Crossfit to base your decisions on what ever they may be. Thanks for you time and you can read my qualifications here-

Comment #79 - Posted by: Bryant-CF Oahu at July 10, 2008 6:10 PM

I just started CrossFit and it looks like i chose the right day to do it. Can't wait until tomorrow for a workout.

Comment #80 - Posted by: Nick at July 10, 2008 6:11 PM

The concern of the good captain is well intentioned I believe. Like so many he seems incompletely informed, particularly around the idea of scaling the workouts to address his very concerns. He also virtually invalidated any reasonable argument he might have had by the crack about girl-named workouts.

From a spreading-the-gospel, I would go right at this gentleman to show him the true meaning and benefits. Nothing like a former heathen for a convert....

Comment #81 - Posted by: Tim Jones at July 10, 2008 6:13 PM

When I made Crossfit the base for physical fitness in my company I first ensured my leaders understood what fitness means to our soldiers on the battlefield. My argument for those who opposed the program was this—you are fit as a soldier when you can pick your wounded brother off of the ground (in all of his kit), throw him over your shoulder, sprint the 100+ meters to safety, toss him in the back of an ambulance, and then hop over a fence and continue engaging the enemy with effective fire. After my leaders experienced their first Crossfit workout they understood why it is the company standard for physical training in the mornings. There is no better physical fitness program than Crossfit for soldiers.
As leaders we have to teach our superiors and subordinates the importance of this program and how it translates FUNCTIONALLY on the battlefield. The more level 1 certified leaders we can saturate the military with the better. I believe we (the Army) need to get every team leader level 1 certified or start a “train the trainer” across the service. Crossfit is growing, we’ve started it where I am stationed, but this program needs to be adopted at a much larger level.
Coach, and everyone at Crossfit, thanks for changing my life and helping me better prepare my soldiers for our next deployment.

Comment #82 - Posted by: MWade at July 10, 2008 6:13 PM

Wow. Great video. Hey Dale, Apolloswabbie, and Spidey, check our your star turns! Ken C. drippin' blood, Anthony and Jodi...man, everybody was there.

And hey, did you catch that small clip of Jacinto, all 69 years old of him locking out that 30th C&J at 14:30? Chills, man, it still gives me chills.

"Tiger in a human suit." As if it's not cool enough that Coach is here you get Spider Chick with each Zone block...

Comment #83 - Posted by: bingo at July 10, 2008 6:16 PM

Great video.

I have seen the Navy Times "Miss" quote people several times. Grain of salt people.

Not defending anything he said, but the rest of the world is also slow to change their ways (see its not just endemic to the Nav!).

Three months in to Crossfit and I am a changed man.

Qualifier: Naval Resereve LT.

Comment #84 - Posted by: Bill Sparkowski at July 10, 2008 6:17 PM

That guy makes me proud to have been a Marine...SEMPER FI

Comment #85 - Posted by: ScottMacArthur at July 10, 2008 6:20 PM

Until I retire, I'm going to not engage 0-6s in debates, but somebody should tell him that 37.5 % of named workouts are named after males and also that it's unlikely he's going to get one named after him. Also Honor, Courage, Commitment. How are WODs named after women in violation of that?

Comment #86 - Posted by: Robert D. Taylor Jr at July 10, 2008 6:20 PM

Captain Picker IS what's wrong with the Navy these days. The whole statement about the women named WODS being against our core values is ridiculous. I'm in the same Navy as him, but I don't mix up political correctness with my core values. Maybe if the good captain studied up a little more he'd know that having a named WOD is a thing of honor. He's a tool...

Comment #87 - Posted by: jeffro at July 10, 2008 6:24 PM

If this is coming from a Navy officer does he realize that the most elite group in his organization (the SEALS) use CrossFit to train with? Maybe the SEALs should do push ups/sit ups/2 mile run for PT?

Comment #88 - Posted by: ProPain at July 10, 2008 6:31 PM

This knee jerk type reaction to crossfit displays the resistance to change that all large organizations suffer from. Keep in mind this will pass and the USN will spend millions coming around to a very crossfit type program with an impressive acronym name. Nay sayers get freaked out by as Rx workouts and miss the point ( scale to suit your ablity and be well rounded). In my 15 years of service crossfit is the best way I’ve seen to train troops for real world operations. The troops will sometimes over do it that’s why Sr NCOs exist . stay safe and train hard.

Comment #89 - Posted by: Tom Lanning at July 10, 2008 6:35 PM

That was the best shot and edited video I have ever seen on this site. Who ever did it definitely knows their shit. A+

Will lay my thoughts on the article later.

Comment #90 - Posted by: Adam/TempleOwl M/20/6'2"/185 at July 10, 2008 6:36 PM

A statement like that astounds me on so many different levels. I am sure Capt. Picker is an intelligent man, but why do so many intelligent people make broad authoritative statements about subjects they clearly know nothing about?
I think it is fair to say that many Crossfitters spent time at this website reading the articles and posts,watching the videos, basically learning as much as they could before beginning the program. Drinking the kool-aide requires education and there is no shortage of material(at times it is even overwhelming). The fact that so many different Certs. are offered speaks to the fact that Crossfitters want to learn.
So, when someone speaks about Crossfit and does not even realize the honor of having a namesake WOD, well...it is mind boggling.
I feel sorry for the uninformed,they miss out on so much.
I would encourage Cpt. Picker to start with Dave Castros videos in the past 3 months of the CFJ.

Comment #91 - Posted by: Kimberly at July 10, 2008 6:38 PM

Wussing out is "contrary" to my "core values"...
Psalm 18:42

Comment #92 - Posted by: j_fuller at July 10, 2008 6:38 PM

Great video Tony!

Comment #93 - Posted by: Jason Ackerman - Albany CrossFit at July 10, 2008 6:40 PM

Some people don't get it, that's all. Remember when you first heard about it - weren't you scared to leave your bench presses and curls - afraid you might get small - what about abs you said... but after you tried it is when you got it...probably because you couldn't stand up and you couldn't believe you could do something so simple and hurt so much. The good Captain must have a buddy who knows a crossfitter. Get him to try it. Bet he'll believe then! Or not!

Comment #94 - Posted by: tw at July 10, 2008 6:40 PM


i would advocate NOT e-mailing the captain. it's not going to do anything but convince him we're a bunch of crazy cultists. he clearly has missed the point, but i don't think anything short of tasting the kool-aid is going to change his mind.

Comment #95 - Posted by: john heins 24/m/FL/5'11"/180 at July 10, 2008 6:42 PM

I'm surprised that any military officer would be against functional fitness. It is apparent that the CAPT has not taken the time to educate himself by investigating the CF home website. We had an article that ran in the Army Times that was 3 pages long that described the CF program. So far I have not seen any negative reactions from the Army leadership, quite the opposite. The Army is looking at moving closer to a CF type program due to the overwhelming enthusiasm of deployed and conus based soldiers who have seen the positive benefits. Frankly, I have been preaching CF to my office full of government contractors and the guy who picked up on the idea was my 06 boss and not the young guys! You can teach old dogs new tricks.

As for the names, the good CAPT must still be gun shy from tailhook. You could call the workouts anything you want but the bottom line is that functional fitness is key to our business. I'll continue to preach the gospel until I physically can't do it any more.

MAJ Glenn Hodges
U.S. Army

Comment #96 - Posted by: Glenn at July 10, 2008 6:43 PM

NAVY Core Values = Honor, Courage, Commitment. What the f*ck does naming WOD's after women have to do with any one of those things? it's like they told me in basic training: "Look at the guy next to you. If he's dumber than you, he'll be your boss one day".

Comment #97 - Posted by: antikrunk at July 10, 2008 6:49 PM

I don't usually comment on these kind of things, but today I had to or I would explode. As a Navy veteran I am embarassed to be associated with this "Captain." The "Captain" has obviously not done his research. He completely missed any reference to scaling wods. His comment about naming wods after women is just pathetic. It makes the "Captain" sound like an officer interrested in advancing his career by pushing political correctness to the detriment of the men and women of the US Navy he is suppose to be taking care of.

Coach - Thanks for the best fitness program I have ever experienced. I am sure you do not let uninformed opinions such as the "Captain's" affect you, but as my Dad used to tell me, 'You know you are doing something good and worthwhile if you have both loyal fans and strong detractors." (not his exact words - but I didn't think his exact words would make it through the filter). Thanks again for a Great program.

Comment #98 - Posted by: RB at July 10, 2008 6:52 PM

This kind of thought process just makes me even more embarrassed to be in the Navy. He obviously forgot that more and more SEAL's are incorporating CF in to their program. What a shame. I utterly agree with James from post #16. I myself have tried pushing a watered down version of CF at my command, and the reply I get is basically "We have better things to do".... so sad....

Comment #99 - Posted by: Bart at July 10, 2008 6:53 PM

I think we are all getting to defensive, granted, i think the guy is probably a tool, but hey that is for him to deal with. The problem that he couldn't adequately address is that the Navy Times DID make Crossfit out to be for everyone, and there are alot of tubby-tubbies in the Navy and they are not ready for Crossfit, We use exercises that if not done properly with the right training can cause serios injuries, Navy Times made it appear that ANYONE can do it ... this guy can't and probably shouldn't until he gets himself into better shape. As far as the girls named WOD's, GET OVER IT, thats how we roll and if my Navy doesn't want to do Angie then they shouldn't play in our raindeer games.

Comment #100 - Posted by: Chalupito at July 10, 2008 6:53 PM

# 87

I was just waiting for the, "My service is tougher than yours," comments. In my humble opinion both Navy and AF should avoid that argument.

Comment #101 - Posted by: Mikey B at July 10, 2008 6:55 PM

Another example of the senior leadership of the services being out of touch with reality and the ground truth. This goes to prove that the we as a military may not be a thinking, learning, adaptive organization.

Comment #102 - Posted by: michael shaw at July 10, 2008 6:55 PM

Are you that person that got mad at me for sweating and making to much noise after doing "G.I.Jane" for the first time?

Comment #103 - Posted by: john at July 10, 2008 6:56 PM

The Captains comments are the typical swabbie attitudes!

Comment #104 - Posted by: Josh D Ryan at July 10, 2008 6:57 PM




Comment #105 - Posted by: Dave/32/205 at July 10, 2008 6:57 PM

#64 Karen (Spider Chick),

You rule because:

1) You are ridiculously hardcore and eloquent.
2) You use words that even I have to look up, and that is, if I say so myself, fairly impressive.

I am calling you right now to tell you how awesome you are.

Comment #106 - Posted by: BullFrog at July 10, 2008 7:02 PM

I'll break the rules and toss out an ad hominem attack.


Glad I'm in the Army. My guys and I have been doing CrossFit for PT the past 7 months solid. We have had no injury due to the program (only individual stupidity) and our section PT average is 285 out of 300.

Our workouts are not COTS because we have created our own calendar based on Coach's workout programming methodology and equipment we have available.

We log results for every workout and compare as each one comes up. We have yet to see where there was not progress from the time prior.

CrossFit is THE standard for fitness, period.

Of course if you are on the site reading this you probably already know that.

Comment #107 - Posted by: Bob in NoVA at July 10, 2008 7:02 PM

Reminds me of how, in the '70s, I was constantly getting yelled at for doing pullups from the various pipes and angle irons aboard the USS America and USS Arthur W. Radford (dd-974?). I also got yelled at for doing inverted pushups w/ feet up on the chairs. Sigh. I would have hoped that things would have changed. Maybe this guy isn't representative of the real Navy. I hope not.

Comment #108 - Posted by: Mark Brinton at July 10, 2008 7:03 PM

Hi, I know everyone is fired up about this officer's comments, but I thought I would include this link I came across in my hometown paper ...and maybe we could turn some of this negative energy into some positive impacts that crossfit always seems to make, not only in the physical fitness realm, but in communities worldwide. I know what type of community we are, so as much as I would have liked to have donated all the money to help out, I still got to put some food on the table and am asking anyone who may be able to to possibly help out.

A little background, this young man was a promising basketball and football player from my high school (granted I graduated about 10 years ago), but I still worked out with these kids and the coaches when back home on leave. While playing in a summer AAU basketball tourney, he passed suddenly from a congenital heart disease, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. The article fills in the rest.



Comment #109 - Posted by: x24696 at July 10, 2008 7:05 PM

Mr. Picker

Sounds like you have never pushed yourself to the limits on anything. It is easier to have an excuse than to try to accomplish something that is extremely challenging.

I do not think that you do the military any favors with statements like this

Comment #110 - Posted by: NEESE at July 10, 2008 7:05 PM

Posted by Ricardo of CrossFit HEL/Oakland

This is a copy of the letter I sent to John Picker, Captain who made those comments:

"Attention Captain John Picker:

I read some of your comments pertaining to the CrossFit way of exercise. It is natural to have a concern, as should anyone about exercise programs because we rely on our bodies a great deal on a daily basis. I however respectfully disagree with a few of the comments that I read that you had made.

"Another item I want to touch on pertains to a cover story in a recent
Navy Times on Crossfit, "the new fitness craze." This is a commercial
off the shelf (COTS) program and is not tailored to an individual.
Several SMEs in the sports medicine field (military & civilian) have
addressed a concern that the program has the potential for causing an
increased incidence of musculoskeletal injuries and even muscle
breakdown (rhabdomyoloysis) and therefore is not supported by CPPD.
Granted, anyone can develop a program that's very intense but there's a
safer way of doing this for our Sailors. Additionally, any program that
names exercises after women is contrary to our Core Values."

- Captain Jon Picker, USN, Commanding Officer, Center for Personal and Professional Development, in the July issue of ENCOMPASS.

This program is not a fitness craze. It is founded on some very important military principles:

1. drive
2. discipline
3. mental toughness
4. competition & teamwork
5. pushing past your limits

There is so much more to gain from this methodology than strength & physical results. I used to HATE going to the gym, but now I go 5 times a week and I LOVE it! That is a major breakthrough that if I have had, I am sure many Americans have had the same breakthrough.

As far as SMEs saying the program has the potential for causing an increased incidence of injuries, I say this:

1. What are their credentials?
2. Have they tried Crossfit or seen anyone for a lengthy period of time to back their claims?
3. Have you considered that everything in CrossFit is scaleable so that injuries can be prevented?
4. It is not the program or intensity that hurts people, it is their decisions to go against what their body is telling them.

As far as the naming of workouts after women being against the Core Values of the Navy, well, it is good that they have core values, it is unfortunate that this is an important enough issue to even bring up.

I respect all that the military has done for our country, especially in these times of war, but I must voice my opinion on this matter. There is far more valuable beyond what you are willing to see at this point.

Best of luck,

Ricardo Linnell"

What I wanted to say but didn't was: Have you considered that there are many females that are more fit than some of your sailors?

Comment #111 - Posted by: Ricardo at July 10, 2008 7:08 PM

"Oh, Captain Jon Pickler, you are MINE."
"Such jackassery is rare, and I'm dying to meet you. lets get it on film. If, for some viral hemmoragic fever complication I don't make the workout, I'll send my 14 year old superior, Kallista."
"there is no excuse. there is no weight class. there is no age class. fight like your life depends on it because it does. jon only wants to be honorable mention in the short bus category of 50 year olds in the clydesdale division. there is no excuse."

Wow that was impressive, that may have not been neccessary, but wow those were some classic quotes!
Spiderchick, I have a favor to ask:
Do you think you could inspire my two very out of shape and loving parents, to get off their butts and get moving? I have been trying for years, but they just think I am crazy.

Comment #112 - Posted by: Adam/TempleOwl M/20/6'2"/185 at July 10, 2008 7:09 PM

Does Mr. Picker know that they do Crossfit-style WODs in BUD/S?

Comment #113 - Posted by: Shane S at July 10, 2008 7:11 PM

Nope, we wouldn't want a little thing like effectiveness get in the way of COMBAT READINESS.

Guess what Sir, all your Sailors who have a "PAIR" (metaphorically speaking) will be doing CrossFit after your sorry-assed PT program is over to make sure they can do the jobs they volunteered to do. I am guessing you will not be participating dure to missing "resources". (I also doubt you ever tried it.)

Get over yourself and start looking out for the troops.

The SOF community lives it, the Marine Corps all but adopted the name, and all the other combat arms are charging as fast as they can to learn it. Canadians even adopted it a couple of years ago.

This is one of the best reasons why it pays to go SOF, right here. Avoiding this kind of arbatrary crap, push down by people who have no intention of ever seeing the elephant.

REMF's!... Rear Echelon Mother F#ck*rs!!

Comment #114 - Posted by: CCTJOEY at July 10, 2008 7:15 PM

I know you know this, but please don't take the CPT's word as representative of the military. No bullsh!t, I believe CF has done more for the survival of warfighters than any technical device or tactic. If the total adoption of CF within the SOF community is not proof enough of its value for CPT Picker - then no amount of emails will convince him otherwise. CF embraces inherent risk with pushing the human body to its limits, as SHOULD all worthwhile military training.

CPT Picker,
Sir - your portrayal of CF is f@cked up beyond belief. Your effort to erode CF gains in the military community is dangerous, and if you are more concerned about the names of workouts than getting your men functionally fit and combat ready then you Sir are selfishly incompetent.

Comment #115 - Posted by: LT Dan at July 10, 2008 7:17 PM

I am currently an officer in the Air Force and echo all the comments noted here. Many of my Air Force colleagues have turned to Crossfit and have seen outstanding benefits. I am pushing this from a voluntary standpoint in my squadron.

As has been noted, any program has potential for injury. Crossfit, with a higher intensity, also has potential for injury, but I've found the only pain I encounter is soreness. I feel very confident in the exercises and am perfectly comfortable with understanding how to scale workouts. In fact, I think the type of exercises involving intense repetitions and full body actions are doing an excellent job of preparing my muscles for the max lifts, especially the smaller muscles that are most prone to injury and are not exercised in exercises tailored to isolate muscle groups.

Comment #116 - Posted by: Nikolas Chapapas at July 10, 2008 7:18 PM

Be honest Cap, you're afraid of the "girls!" It's okay, they kick my tail most everyday, but I'm better prepared to fulfill my duty because of it.

Thanks Cross Fit!

Comment #117 - Posted by: Joe Vandal at July 10, 2008 7:23 PM

I disagree with the Captain. Conventional sports medicine in the military is behind the times. I would think that if preventing injuries were at the forefront of a commander's mind, we would not see road marches with full packs. We would see soldiers walking short distances in the coolest part of the day in athletic shoes. We don't see that though. We see soldiers training for the environments and conditions in which they will be operating: the hottest part of the day carrying what they will be carrying on a foot patrol (or more). My opinion may not matter to any one other than myself, but I will give it anyway: Crossfit is better suited for preparing military, law enforcement, and others for the unforseen physical challenges of their jobs. We should be glad that the opportunity exists to participate in Crossfit and that the program is free online. Time will show the results of the Crossfit experiments that we all participate in daily. I know that my level of fitness increases with every workout. I think we will see these comments proven wrong in short time.

Comment #118 - Posted by: Ed at July 10, 2008 7:23 PM

The Captain has the right to make comment as he sees fit. However, he obviously hasn't taken the time to understand CF fully before passing comment.

Comment #119 - Posted by: Adam Stanecki (CF:VIC) at July 10, 2008 7:26 PM

#115 Shane

I think they misinterpreted that there is scalability & the art behind tailoring the workload individually comes with the Trainer. As a senior in college that's about to graduate with a BS in Exercise Science, and applying to Navy OCS, the current PT programs are vastly outdated & limitly uneffective. Especially for guys preparing for BUD/S.
I believe the face picture is a misrepresentation, because the art is deeper than online posts.

Comment #120 - Posted by: Andrew Wilson at July 10, 2008 7:26 PM


lighten up. the guy is off base but he's trying to do his job. he wasn't personally attacking you. wow, some real holier than thou narcissists out there. for all you know the capt is a decorated SEAL or something, someone who you may not agree with on this issue but not the f@ing devil. he's not a crossfitter, but that doesn't make you better than him...or worse.

IN THE INTEREST OF FULL DISCLOSURE i am a 20 year military officer -- flew F-14, F-18, F-16 and was originally commissioned through the USMC. little bro is a SEAL. i have flown for the USN and USAF. they ALL have great people and they ALL have not so great people. let's stop the internecine warfare huh? and for goodness sake, show some class when dealing with someone you disagree with (spider chick, i know you can do better than 'occifur' when making a point).

Comment #121 - Posted by: sachem at July 10, 2008 7:27 PM

It is a simple thing to understand, The Navy is highly commercialized and so is it's fitness and so are the people who come up with the fitness standard. The Navy fitness program, which is out of date, is run by the people who are intimidated by CrossFit and how it is slowly and methodically taking over. It is a turf war in the Military, not just in the Navy. The fitness programs are contracted out to so-called experts. I tried to offer my services for free on the base gym. I met with the fitness coordinator on Camp Pendleton to pitch her the idea. It was clear that she new nothing about CrossFit but was highly against it for some reason and the only reason it can be is that she was threatened by it. She said the usual things about it being dangerous and being trendy...blah blah blah , nothing convincing. She had an opporitunity to attend the level 1 certs on CP along with her staff and she blatently lied to me and told me that coach denied her access.
The point is that this is a war over money, and this Capt believes that Sailors are stupid and mindless drones. It is a smear. I think that he is intellectually challenged to say the least. CrossFit is the smart thing, and smart people do get it. The military fitness coordinators are contractors who are afraid of being booted for being incompitent. That is who these so-called experts are. Pitiful fools

Comment #122 - Posted by: trip at July 10, 2008 7:30 PM

Thank God I didn't settle for second best!!!
USMC Combat Engineer

Comment #123 - Posted by: Mike Trichell at July 10, 2008 7:35 PM

The guy must be bucking for a slot in an Obama ad-menstruation.

Here we go, the "kinder, gentler" military thing all over again. Get out your stress cards.

For once...can the warriors please run the military.

Best quote, "and is not tailored to an individual."

Like standard military PT is??? At least CrossFit Scales. Military PT is just herding Cattle. (literally)

I know what it is. He won't be able to run at the front with his Guide-On.

Comment #124 - Posted by: CCTJOEY at July 10, 2008 7:35 PM

hi guys.

recently started cf and love it. Just after some advise regarding training in mornings. Due to work i can only train ealry mornings. Problem is i find that i lack energy at this time as such my workouts are less intense,

Can anyone recomend supplements / tactics that may give me a boost at these early hours??

Comment #125 - Posted by: mick at July 10, 2008 7:35 PM

I just reread this, and this more seems like a legal statement than a denouncement.

Comment #126 - Posted by: Andrew Wilson at July 10, 2008 7:36 PM

Liability wise

Comment #127 - Posted by: Andrew Wilson at July 10, 2008 7:37 PM

I am getting out of the Navy...embarassed, embarrassing, discusting, discusted. I should have joined the coasties instead.

Comment #128 - Posted by: trip at July 10, 2008 7:41 PM

I'm an Air Force officer, so I feel qualified to say this: while I personally (respectfully) disagree with the captain's viewpoint on the issue, I don't feel that we should make his work email address public. I can assure you that as a senior officer his inbox is quite full and by inundating him with email we are impeding the execution of his official duty. I'm not by any means implying that you don't have the right to email him, certainly you do. However, he is certainly aware by now that his statement regarding crossfit is being discussed on this website. In my opinion, deluging him with email on the subject is not the best way to convey what crossfit is about. I would like to respectfully ask the webmaster/moderator not to post contact information like that without the individual's consent in the future. Decide for yourself how best to impact the issue, but I would be stepping out of line by contacting the captain directly on the issue. However, feel free to email me if you have questions regarding my position on the issue.

Comment #129 - Posted by: Kevin at July 10, 2008 7:41 PM

Does anyone have a good guess why naming WOD's after women is bad? I really am curious. Maybe there is a good reason out there, although I highly doubt it.

Comment #130 - Posted by: Quinn 21/f/5'7"/165 at July 10, 2008 7:42 PM

Oh I forgot to add, that video was AMAZING!! I love it! One of my favorites so far :)

Comment #131 - Posted by: Quinn 21/f/5'7"/165 at July 10, 2008 7:48 PM

Another example of cutting edge Navy thinking,

Thank god I was in the Marine Corps!

Comment #132 - Posted by: DaveG at July 10, 2008 7:50 PM

it's sad that a guy like picker would take that view of crossfit without understanding it. sounds like his decisions effect how the navy trains and thereby combat readiness. if a candy ass lawyer like me can do this stuff then all combat troops should be doing it. it really matters for them.

Comment #133 - Posted by: ken c at July 10, 2008 7:50 PM

It is days like these that I am ashamed to be an officer and therefore linked to this ill-informed man.
The Marine Corps Times had nothing but good remarks in regards to the "CrossFit Craze". Also, functional fitness was one of the major points identified in the Marine Corps last look into redoing their PT program. Paraphrasing here, but one of the quotes was "if a Marine pulls his back lifting a 155MM artillery shell, the he is out of the fight. How did the 3 mile run, pullups and situps prepare him for that?"
I echo the previous posts about Capt Pickens not getting into the details enough to know what he was talking about. I know one of the things I was taught at OCS was the less you open your mouth, the less likely you were to say something stupid. Guess he missed that pearl of wisdom...

Comment #134 - Posted by: Team-G at July 10, 2008 7:50 PM

Just have to say I am a 1SG in the Army who recently took over a company whose PT Average was below 230. I have done CrossFit with the unit non-stop for the past 8 weeks and the units Average is now 270. 8 Soldiers who were over weight are now within Body Fat standards. CrossFit changes the Basic Push-up Sit-up Run of normal units and gives something new for the Soldiers to look FWD to every day. So to the CPT I have to say come join us for a day and see if you can hang.

Comment #135 - Posted by: Shane at July 10, 2008 7:51 PM

29 yom 225#

Can't believe that a member of the armed forces would denounce any physical program that would make troops better.
"If I have to explain it, you wouldn't understand"

Made up my own workout today
warm up of 10 min easy rowing
4 min tabata rowing (8 rounds)
2 x 25 of 135# deadlift
2 x 25 of 135# deadlift from a 3" step
4 min tabata rowing (8 rounds)
22 minutes

Comment #136 - Posted by: Kuna at July 10, 2008 7:54 PM

Let's name the rest day after his weakness!

Comment #137 - Posted by: Mike Trichell at July 10, 2008 7:55 PM

who's the big fat guy in the background of the picture today???? Nice!

Comment #138 - Posted by: brian at July 10, 2008 7:58 PM

Uhhh... as a Navy veteran and drilling reservist, just another confirmation that I joined the most pathetic service, mostly based on the leadership such as pickler, who don't know how to push themselves at all; Strange that the some of the toughest military training/Units is in the Navy's BUD/s Seal teams. I can only be thankful that I got to experience BUB/s at 19 and go through 1st and 2nd phase. Even though i didnt graduate the lessons I learned about true discomfort and pushing yourself past known limts, have served me well in my law enforcement career. Pickler is like many overeducated people with no true experience, they will talk out ther a@# about subjects they have no experience on, such as fitness. What qualifications does a navy physician hold about fitness, to comment about it? The fact the SEAL teams have embraced it, and other special ops units whose lives depend on their physical performance where second place is awarded posthumously, says everything. The problem with our country is too many people follow weak minded, fearful people such as Pickler who advise a lifestyle of moderation and safety. If you don't push the limits you'll never improve and push past old boundries. As a cop, I get exhausted with professional victims, such as Pickler.

God Bless America and Crossfit

Comment #139 - Posted by: Alex C 35/m/69/192 at July 10, 2008 7:58 PM

Mick #128,


Comment #140 - Posted by: CCTJOEY at July 10, 2008 8:03 PM

With the rates of diabetes and obesity in our ohh so fine nation it always amazes me when individuals, especially in "high positions" say anthing negative in regards to movement! We have the unhealthiest country on the planet yet Mr. Tits McGee is goin to comden people for exercising! It just shows how full of donuts he is!! I am going to ponder his remarks when I do my 10k!!

Comment #141 - Posted by: Curtis at July 10, 2008 8:04 PM

As a former armor officer, it's shameful to see another military officer make a statement based obviously on not having done better research. Drive On Soldiers! Drive On!

Comment #142 - Posted by: Davie at July 10, 2008 8:04 PM

They linked to his email address, hah!!!

Comment #143 - Posted by: Redding Mark S at July 10, 2008 8:04 PM

Hey man, I am in the Navy and learned this excercise from a Navy Doctor, you all may know him as Dr. Ahmik Jones. ??Don't we name our Navy ships she?? or her. Sexist my ass! I don;t think he has ever even tried the program.

Comment #144 - Posted by: Joe Hamm at July 10, 2008 8:07 PM

Well no one has ever accused the Navy of being fit or inclined to meet a physical challenge. The Army Times had also had an article about Crossfit this week but instead chose to sing its praises. It was hailed for its popularity amongst soldiers, because it combines minimalism, variety, and fun all into one package. I agree. I have heard of Crossfit before deployment. But the limited fitness equipment, a few bars, plates, and dumbells, has truly turned me onto the unique daily challenges Crossfit provides. From one Army soldier: thank you Crossfit.

Comment #145 - Posted by: Matt at July 10, 2008 8:10 PM

It almost makes me angry to read that. It does make me laugh. I have never seen a program that is more personalized, that is why it is scaled to the individual. I have seen 70 year old men do CrossFit and I have seen 10 year old kids doing it, all at there level. I think a lot of boats are named after women as well as hurricane. I would think him being in the navy would appreciate that.

Comment #146 - Posted by: David Chase at July 10, 2008 8:10 PM

Another reason I will be going Marines not regular navy.

Comment #147 - Posted by: nathan at July 10, 2008 8:10 PM

I am a sailor who's life very literally depends on being physically fit. I have been a believer for 18 months now. My first workout? Murph. Named after a MAN and REAL Naval officer. Not one that got his exercise jumping to conclusions or flying a desk. No exercise program has helped me develop personally or professionally like crossfit and I wouldn't be able to do many of the things my country asks me to do. Of course it is hard. That is what makes it fun. If you are happy having the appearance of fitness rather than truly being fit, then stick with your program. I'm going to stick to mine.

Comment #148 - Posted by: nick at July 10, 2008 8:11 PM

So should we rename the rest day "Captain Picker"? Just curious.

Comment #149 - Posted by: Semper Fi Beaver at July 10, 2008 8:12 PM

It's people like Jon Picker who I am glad don't know anything about Crossfit! Keep it for people who embrace change and challenge in their lives....not old, out of touch navy captains.

Comment #150 - Posted by: Tim at July 10, 2008 8:13 PM

Spider Chick:

That was a great post, I'm still laughing about the belt with jeans comment!

Comment #151 - Posted by: Jeremy at July 10, 2008 8:14 PM

GET A GRIP Crossfitters! Dissing your own service because of the comments by the Capt? Now there's commitment.

Lots of really sad, ugly comments today. A nasty side of Crossfit IMO. some of you sound like you joined a cult!

Comment #152 - Posted by: sachem at July 10, 2008 8:15 PM

wow...sad to see that your so uneducated about crossfit. i work for San Diego Fire and have seen that every single person who has adopted crossfit as their choice of fitness, has increased gains in all fields of physical fitness. and guess what...some of those people are woman. hopefully youll get over yourself soon.

Comment #153 - Posted by: tadow at July 10, 2008 8:17 PM

I'm a Navy Doctor, and I've been doing Crossfit for a couple of years now. The Captain has a pretty typical response. I've heard similar responses from Marine Corps Colonels. They are pretty much scared of Crossfit to be honest. It often comes across as a program designed for the fittest of the fit and is some crazy thing that Navy SEALs do. Once you sit down with them and explain how the workouts can be scaled they usually come around a little. Crossfit doesn't need to be sanctioned by the military; we just want them to let us modify the gym a little. Set the good example, try not to get injured (that's their biggest concern), be a good Sailor, Soldier, Airman, or Marine, and always ace their PT test. They'll come around. That being said, the comment about workouts named after girls kind of came out of left field, so this guy may be hopeless.

Comment #154 - Posted by: Dave M at July 10, 2008 8:17 PM

I'd like to see some of the Navy Brass do a "girl" exercise.......lets say "Nasty Girls"

I am pretty sure they wouldn't be able to do the muscle ups.

Comment #155 - Posted by: devin at July 10, 2008 8:20 PM

Naming workouts after women is not contrary to our Core Values, eh? What about ships? Do we not do that?

In the words of a great man: "Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man"

-The Dude

Comment #156 - Posted by: nick at July 10, 2008 8:21 PM

I thought the girl named WODs were named after hurricanes?

Comment #157 - Posted by: kmh at July 10, 2008 8:21 PM

Naming workouts after women is contrary to our Core Values, eh? What about ships? Do we not do that?

In the words of a great man: "Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man"

-The Dude

Comment #158 - Posted by: nick at July 10, 2008 8:21 PM

i believe if good old skipper took a look at the crossfit community and the navy community he would see that in the navy there are much younger people in much worse shape than crossfitters.
Using navy pt caused me to gain 30lbs and altogether lose interest in working out. since discovering crossfit i am in better shape and stronger than before despite a "career ending" wrist injury.
thanks crossfit

Comment #159 - Posted by: willie at July 10, 2008 8:22 PM

I am chanting crossfit over and over... Crossfit ..CrossFit.. I can't stop. Wait a minute sachem, you are right! I am in a cult! Heya ye ya Crossfit ye ya.

Comment #160 - Posted by: trip at July 10, 2008 8:22 PM

What a pitiful comment and argument. Am I wrong or are there not women serving in the U.S. Navy and other services? Disgusting.

Comment #161 - Posted by: silverback at July 10, 2008 8:23 PM

Thanks for the awesome video with one of my favorite rock songs!

Comment #162 - Posted by: Kat at July 10, 2008 8:26 PM

Mick, on the training in the AM; make sure you have a small 2 block meal and make sure you get you good fats before you train. I like some egg starters with a good carb and a small handful of almonds and macadameas(sp) before I train in the AM.
I am rarely run down during the training session, then I will have a good 4block shake and more nuts, afterwards.
Hope that helps.

Comment #163 - Posted by: Angelo at July 10, 2008 8:26 PM


I'm an Australian chiropractor with 15 years experience.

My primary fitness approach since I was 16yo has been running. I've been exploring and experimenting with Crossfit since another chiropractor buddy recommended it to me in Jan 2008.

I've been doing the WOD's without fail since June 25th. Body fat has dropped from 14% to 10%. Strength has improved markedly, yada yada yada ... you know how it goes for Crossfit newbies!

Crossfit exercises use multiple muscles and joints in harmony. Reduced risk of injury from this type of training is just ONE of the many benefits. Crossfit teaches to scale exercises to avoid injury. There's nothing on this website that I've seen that is "dangerous".

I recommend (appropriately scaled) Crossfit exercises to all of my clients, from 8yo kids to 80yo grandmothers.

Tell your chiropractor to do some reading in the exercise physiology and sports science journals. There's some cool stuff in there to support the Crossfit approach. Indeed, it's the foundation of Coach G's approach to training the human body for performance. Some of it (eg Tabata's work) has been in the public domain for 12+ years.

As for the Navy guy? Those who can't do, teach. Those who can't teach end up in administrative positions of great power!

OK ... off to do my 10k in windy rain.

Kallista leaves me nowhere to hide!
3,2,1 ... Go!

Comment #164 - Posted by: TonyTheChiro at July 10, 2008 8:26 PM

i don't know any girls called Fight Gone Bad...

Comment #165 - Posted by: Matt at July 10, 2008 8:27 PM

Had a stomach-bug the past couple of days and just didn't have the energy to finish this one... walked across the finish line at just over 1 hour. I walked the last mile or so... wasn't keeping much of a hard pace to begin with but wanted to attempt and complete the WOD. I managed to eek out a PR on the CFT yesterday but knew this would be a bit more intense. I'll make good use of the rest day tomorrow...

Comment #166 - Posted by: MarcusG 5'9" 168 at July 10, 2008 8:30 PM

Jon Picker needs to show some respect to a program he has obviously never tried. Maybe he should meet a scaled version of Fran!!

Comment #167 - Posted by: Alex Margolin at July 10, 2008 8:32 PM

Haven't posted in a long time but this brought me out. Maybe someone should remind the good Captain that life isn't safe sometimes. I mean at any time that swivel arm chair of his could snap causing great musculoskeltal injuries. Not sure what his point is to be honest. Crossfit makes you strong, fast, and most importantly TOUGH. Mentally and physically. I can't tell you how many times I've heard people complain about how tough X is. I just look at it and go, "Ain't as tough as Fran so let's get going." The Core Value comment is intensely curious as well.

Comment #168 - Posted by: Kane at July 10, 2008 8:32 PM

I found the Captain's comments interesting. He is repeating the same baseless ideas that I hear from my fellow co-workers at the firehouse i.e. don't squat past 90 degrees, three days lifting two days cardio, back and bi's, chest and tri's, your going to hurt your back doing: deadlifts, cleans, jerks, etc. All of it, as coach says based on conjecture.

I have been doing Crossfit for about a year and recently opened an affiliate. When I started I had a severe problem with my right shoulder I thought I needed surgery and have issues with range of motion. I too had second thoughts about some of the exercises that Crossfit prescribed, but I did them anyway as best I could. As I continued my shoulder got better and now I have no pain and full range of motion. I am sure there are many of you and others that have had similar experiences.

I believe The capt. would be well advised to try Crossfit for a month before he comments again and he will see for himself the benefits of the program.

Comment #169 - Posted by: Botdoy at July 10, 2008 8:34 PM

There is a reason why the most fit, most elite units in all of the nations military are moving towards CrossFit (Special Forces, SEALs, CAG (if they really exist), etc.). It is the greatest method of producing the fitness one needs on the battlefield (functional movements, metabolic conditioning, insert any CrossFit fundamental here).
Nearly all the Soldiers in my company believe that CrossFit is what the Army needs to go to, even though most of them dislike CrossFit because it sucks.
It is nothing but completely apparent to my platoon (Infantry PL) to understand that CrossFit will prepare them much greater for the rigors of combat than any other program they have seen.
Rest assured, no one will be able to prevent the Platoon Leaders of fighting units from switching their men onto CrossFit.
Although it will take time for the military to embrace CrossFit (what it needs to do to have Soldiers truly physically prepared for combat), us junior leaders need to do all we can to encourage our subordinates, peers and leaders to incorporate CrossFit into our standard regimen.
"The goal of training can be summed up in one phrase: To make yourself as indestructible as possible." -Mark Twight

Comment #170 - Posted by: James H at July 10, 2008 8:35 PM

In reference to the quote, my answer is a swift

"whatever" to its author

Comment #171 - Posted by: bladeboy at July 10, 2008 8:38 PM

Well, am I glad Im in the Army. I wonder if they had the same guys working on this project as the ones who correctly identified that the cold war was going to end when it did. Oh wait, they didnt have a clue about that either. Makes me wonder.

Comment #172 - Posted by: nate at July 10, 2008 8:41 PM

Best games video yet!!!!! Awesome job on that!!

Comment #173 - Posted by: Anthony Springman at July 10, 2008 8:42 PM


LOL I just looked at the pic again and the guy in the denim long sleeve on the far right is looking pretty hot to me!!

Comment #174 - Posted by: Quinn 21/f/5'7"/165 at July 10, 2008 8:43 PM

It's funny how some military branches can't make up their minds about a fitness routine. There are just as confused about fitness physiology and exercise as I was when I was reading Men's Health and Muscle and Fitness trying to formulate a master plan. The closer they think they are getting to real fitness, the further away they are getting.

Everything is too isolated these days, isolate your muscle groups, isolate your vitamins, isolate your cardio from your resistance training. Ehhhhh.

I'm currently active duty and recently registered as my unit's Health Promotion Coordinator. As far as what they taught, it was somewhat dancing around the whole aspect of CrossFit without coming out and saying it. Even the nutrition.

It's sad because they said this is what we would like to have our military branch up to par with but they told us at the end of the class, it will never get there, and it is a constant uphill battle.

It's also sad to see that there is a trend of those with decision making power to come up with excuses why they can't give the go-ahead and making the entire branch (and lets face it, you joined the military to support your country no matter what, it would behoove you to at least be fit enough to do so. And don't give me that crap that you have a desk job and are in no need of fitness or being at least having less body fat percentage than your own age. When someone attacks your facility, I doubt you will be sitting there still typing away at your e-mails.) have scheduled PT that everyone can do, with progression, an instructor, and plan that will keep you from over exerting (over training) yourself... i.e. CrossFit.

I can't stand it when someone like this Commander will make a decision that this workout idea is too demanding, too dangerous, and causes diseases, and is against your core values. What about all those B/S smoke breaks you give your members? You know that it is the cause of the no. 1 killer in America?? Yet you do nothing about it, but something you don't even take the time to look into that could better outfit your members you discard with haste.

What is it with this FEAR of fitness? Why are so many reluctant to make a change in that area? Not only that area, but things like tobacco usage while at work or on duty. You are supporting cancer, and heart disease, and the big tobacco industries when you let them smoke at work.

Basically there is one answer:

There is no money in healthy individuals.

...Hope to see you for the WOD tomorrow, nice touch #156. HOO-RAH!

Comment #175 - Posted by: Cory at July 10, 2008 8:45 PM

Any test that offers a "minimum passing score", or even a "maximum points" will inspire only mediocrity and minimum effort. Will I ever come close to beating OPT, or Lucas Brainerd, or Jimi Letchford on a workout? Doubtful, but the possibility is enough to push me to my maximum every day. Without a challenge there is no training, and "working out" can get you or your buddies killed. Just my two cents, THANKS CROSSFIT!

Comment #176 - Posted by: Mike C at July 10, 2008 8:48 PM

I agree with Sachem -- the vicious, name-calling tone of some of these comments is not the good side of CF. Nor is a flood of hate mail likely to be helpful to your friends who are trying to improve fitness in the Navy.

Comment #177 - Posted by: John Frazer M/42/185# at July 10, 2008 8:50 PM

#41 Kevin and others
CPPD: Center for Personal and Professional Development, of which CAPT Picker, USN is the CO.
Navy Core Values: Honor, Courage, and Commitment currently. They were changed in 1992 in response to Tailhook scandal. Previously they were: Professionalism, Integrity, and Tradition. At the time it was felt that the Navy's blind and firm Commitment(;-)) to Tradition had allowed the Tailhook scandal to occur thus necessitating the change to show Congress that the Navy is able fix itself.

This is neither here nor is it there because CAPT Picker, USN is merely showing his lack of understanding of CrossFit or the Navy Core Values or both since Honor-ing anyone with Courage and Commitment by naming a WOD after him or her is not only NOT out of line with the Navy Core Values, it and everything CrossFit stands for is what the Navy wishes the Navy Core Values meant to its people. Unfortunately, the Navy Core Values and their "implementation" were designed by committee and mean so little to the average sailor or officer in their day to day lives except for that annoying 10 seconds when the CMC stops to ask how the Navy Core Values informed the way they combed their hair that morning, etc. Carry on, Shipmate!

§889 of the UCMJ (and my Navy Core Values, of course) prevents me from writing anything untoward of the good CAPT Picker, USN. But I will say that I am deeply disappointed. Not surprised, just disappointed. I have yet to see a sea-going Navy command that even has a PT program. The shore commands (rather, command) I've seen that do (does) have one, it's given all the Commitment of a check-in-the-box.

The Navy is talking a big game about remaking its culture of fitness. Beyond unveiling a cute, shiny new PT uniform ( http://usmilitary.about.com/od/navy/a/newnavyptu.htm ), well... I have yet to see the "way ahead" in the rest of that plan. Me? I'll wait until even 10% of the chiefs I see DON'T have that characteristic "chiefly" shape complete with rolls of fat and hidden belt buckle and trademark waddle before I'll admit any significant change to the Navy's culture of fitness.

But you know what? That's not how it's going to change, not while senior officers like CAPT Picker, USN are in position to tell FEPers (FEP:Fitness Enhancement Program AKA Fat Boys (and Girls)) that constantly varied functional movements executed at high intensity are going to hurt them. Meanwhile, quietly growing legions of sailors and officers throughout the fleet are politely ignoring the earnest, if misguided, opinions of CAPT Picker, USN and his peers and increasing their work capacity across broad time and modal domains. The Navy's culture of fitness will change virally, until the opinions of CAPT Picker, USN and his ilk are the screaming-red-faced-obsolete variety and it won't matter what they say. Knowing the political nature of senior Navy leadership, I'm pretty sure they'll change their minds before it gets to that point.

Nick Hoel

Comment #178 - Posted by: PG at July 10, 2008 8:50 PM

Did anyone tell Capt John Picker there are women IN the Navy (and Marine Corps and Army and Air Force) serving their country next to the men?
Oh, and BTW, that being in the military can KILL you? What is the risk/benefit ratio of a PT program that has a slight chance of hurting you and a extremely likely chance of helping you when you go to WAR (where people are shooting at you and if they capture you, they might do something worse than shoot you)?
Just another example of how organizations such as our military endorse policies that are directly in conflict with one another. (CrossFit is dangerous; don't do it... but go fight a war.)

Comment #179 - Posted by: Susan at July 10, 2008 8:50 PM

Anyone have a link to the whole article by the good Navy Captain? The Centre's website only has June 2008 and prior.


Comment #180 - Posted by: Marc V at July 10, 2008 8:50 PM

speaking of candied asses, this candied-ass, crossfitting civilian is going to bed. great video and comments!! passion!! intensity!!

so glad tomorrow's a rest day. I'm sore all over. Great programming.

Comment #181 - Posted by: John Messano at July 10, 2008 8:51 PM

Capt. Picker, why do you put down women?

Comment #182 - Posted by: jodi at July 10, 2008 8:52 PM

Hey, Captain, I challenge you to a head-to-head Cindy. I'm 55 and did 10 rounds today (squats on a Bosu ball, pushups were 2 foot elevated).

Comment #183 - Posted by: OldCoot at July 10, 2008 8:54 PM


I am not surprised at the volume of responses from military personnel. And although I am a bit embarrassed by the ill-informed comments of a fellow Naval Officer, I am even more embarrassed by the lack of maturity, tact, and respect displayed by some of the previous posters.

If you really want to effect change, keep on Crossfitting, and when someone gets the courage to ask you what crazy exercise you are doing, humbly explain to them the basics of Crossfit. As anyone on this website knows, the viral spread of Crossfit and the rapid and measurable result newbies experience are the best ambassadors for Crossfit. Crossfit needs no cheerleaders, its results speak for itself.

It is clearly apparent that the Captain's comments are ill-informed since he is not aware that the "girls" are named after storms and not just females. I made the same assumption when I first started Crossfit two years ago.

Also, as stated by some of the other posts, sending disrespectful, derogatory, and obnoxious email will only further solidfy the Captain's view that Crossfit is not the right fit for the US Navy. This is unfortunate for all service members of all branches.

The US Navy's official policy for physical training is that it is a requirement to allot three hours per week. As a surface warfare officer I can tell you that this never happens unless the commanding officer makes it a priority and those commanding officers are few and far between.

One of the buzzword phrase laden triads of the United States Naval Academy is to develop naval officers Morally, Mentally, and Physically. Unfortunately, the Physical part gets consciously pushed to the side as our Surface Force is trained to track minute metrics, fix broken equipment, and conduct useless computer based training.

All is not lost though. As recent as the past two years, the US Navy has begun to rework the menus that are served on ships to substitute unhealthy foods for healthier ones and it has begun to actually enforce its standards for its Physical Fitness Test which is three fails and you are discharged from the Navy.

There was a time when the idea of a free America was thought of as a hazardous and ultimately disastrous path for the residents of American colonies. That turned out pretty well.

Very Respectfully,

Chris Pieczonka
Surface Warfare Officer and Crossfitter

Comment #184 - Posted by: caliswo at July 10, 2008 8:54 PM

WOW, WHO DOES THIS GUY THINK HE IS? He says,.."any program that
names exercises after women is contrary to our Core Values" SAY WHAT?
Jon Picker Stop drinkin' that haterade! You DO NOT know Crossfit. Stop talking about Crossfit. Stick to your area of specialty and we will stick to ours. You make an ass out of yourself by assuming.

Comment #185 - Posted by: David K at July 10, 2008 8:55 PM

I'm confused, are we on a new 3 on 1 off cycle now? I'm not sure if I can re-arrange my life if that's the case; my first day shift on and my first day off from firefighting is always my rest day and I can't go back!!!

Comment #186 - Posted by: gaucoin at July 10, 2008 8:58 PM

I've personally trained hundred's of sailors to pass PT exams and have found that the requirement of push ups, situps, & running to be of no indication of fitness.... The fact that the navy still uses BMI and waist to hip ratio's as indications of fitness levels completely baffles me. I've posed this question to many of my clients: 'Do you want me to train you just to pass the exam, or do you really want to be able to perform better and be healthier and more fit?'

Don't get me wrong, being a Navy-brat, I have a fondness for the discipline of Military life and complete appreciation for our servicemen everywhere....

It's just hard NOT to defend something I'm so passionate about - Crossfit -- c'mon folks by 2010 over 50% of our Nations children will be classified as Overweight or Obese -- what we've been doing so far isn't working --- I'm Glad Crossfit has put the WORK back into working out!

Comment #187 - Posted by: Robert at July 10, 2008 9:00 PM

And another thing...

Most of the ridiculous stuff I see the Navy trainers doing with clients at the base gym would make a grown CFer cry. Seriously. We're talking Bosu-Ball-cable-crossover-type stuff. Perhaps this is the "tailored to an individual"-type of program CAPT Picker, USN is advocating as "a
safer way... for our Sailors."

Comment #188 - Posted by: PG at July 10, 2008 9:02 PM

just a side note I didnt read all 192 posts because its late but I would just like to comment that crossfit was on the FRONT page of the Marine Corps Times and is openly welcomed and approved by many Marine Corps Officers and is being fastly implemented

Comment #189 - Posted by: Tim C at July 10, 2008 9:02 PM

Do I hear the Whambulance? Serving up some fresh french cries?
Before reading the posts I had so many thoughts going in my head to post. But reading all of these posts says it all. I love this community! Spider Chick, awesome post! CCTJoey, always a pleasure to see you post! Love reading them. I honestly would write more but its late, and I know rest is important. I am a day behind in my Crossfit. Yes I can max out the AF special operations PT test. No, I cant max out my AF PT test because my waist is not 32 inches, F it. Whats going to get me ready to fight the fight? Crossfit. Whats going to get me ready to prepare my students to fight the fight? Crossfit. Nuff said.

Comment #190 - Posted by: BONE at July 10, 2008 9:04 PM

Here's a good little quote that makes me happy that CrossFit is not that mainstreamed (...yet):

"Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it's time to pause and reflect."
-Mark Twain

John Picker, here's a good definition for ya,

"Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."
-Albert Einstein

Comment #191 - Posted by: Cory at July 10, 2008 9:06 PM

Not being a military man myself, I have to say I have nothing but the utmost respect for all those in uniform - as my dad, uncles, grandfather, grand-uncles, etc were. I find it discouraging that this Captain would write off Crossfit obviously without knowing anything about it. His previously experience probably led him to conclude it was just another fad that happened to be more intense, and therefore more dangerous than most. He has overlooked the one diamond in the midst of the garbage that's out there. I don't doubt that his good qualifications have contributed to getting him where he is, so I hesistate to write him off as an idiot, as many have done. Hopefully the Crossfit fire will continue spreading as it has at the grassroots level among servicemen and -women everywhere -- that's the only way to accomplish real change anyway, when people buy into the program from seeing it firsthand. Results speak the loudest.

One positive observation about senior officers: when working at a US consulate a few years ago, I was put in charge of handling a group of newly minted general officers visiting the region in a "Capstone" program. They came from all branches of the service, including the Coast Guard. I was told by a host country counterpart that it was amazing how fit they all looked, since in their country, the higher up the chain you go in the military, the fatter the officers get. The fact that our generals/admirals had to take and pass PT tests amazed these foreigners.

Comment #192 - Posted by: Chris_M_37/M/175 at July 10, 2008 9:12 PM

#29 Soccerman,

My chiropractor just put up a 3:53 Fran today. He actually promotes CrossFit and my affiliate to all of his patients.

Comment #193 - Posted by: Jason Homesley at July 10, 2008 9:13 PM

Regarding the gentleman's comments: But CrossFit is tailored to the individual. It is true you need to exert yourself but you need to scale it. I learned this the hard way.

Also, each individual has different motivations for doing CrossFit and strengths in the same. My motivation for getting involved is totally different from others. CrossFit helped me focus raw emotions into something productive and recuperate from a loss. Because of that, I am thankful there's a program out there like this.

Do I want to stop CrossFit because I'm not a rock star? No. But as long as I push myself, as long as I don't whine and as long as I finish the drill, then I will make the progress I need to make. I will not stop doing CrossFit because this has been the best physical conditioning of my life. I don't ever want to go back to the lousy globo gym training I did before CrossFit, which made me miserable and unhappy.

Comment #194 - Posted by: jNeal at July 10, 2008 9:13 PM

I'd like to day that I'm surprised by this officer's offhand dismissal of CrossFit. But as a member of the Canadian Forces, I was witness to a similar trend in the nineties that has only recently been addressed. We went through a dark time when it came to fitness that seems similar in nature to what is happening in the U.S Navy--of this Captain's comments are any indication. Leadership lost sight of the aim. Rather than shaping soldiers, sailors, and airmen that were "fit to fight", the CF PT policy was more concerned with inclusion and injury prevention--everyone passes and no one gets hurt. The CF PT tests during that time were laughable to say the least. And the soldiers that resulted from this policy were soft.

I'm proud to report that things have changed and changed for the better. The CF has embraced CrossFit to the point where CrossFit is being written into the CF fitness manual. It's an exciting time. No longer will I be embarassed to be a member of a military that promotes mediocrity in fitness.

Thank you for posting this. It was a timely reminder of where we were and a prompt to get us to where we need to be. We need to seek out this archaic view of fitness wherever it is and purge it. The lives of soldiers, sailors, and airmen everywhere depend on it.

Comment #195 - Posted by: dragoon at July 10, 2008 9:13 PM

Am I wrong for smoke-checking myself with these workouts, then going and drinking a sixpack every night?
God, it is the best though!

Comment #196 - Posted by: Mike Trichell at July 10, 2008 9:13 PM

i wonder what the captains "fran" time is.

Comment #197 - Posted by: jon long at July 10, 2008 9:13 PM

--"Additionally, any program that
names exercises after women is contrary to our Core Values"--

E.O.! E.O.! Somebody call the EO!

I, for one female service member. am offended by his taking offense. I want to file a complaint.

Seriously, I would have loved to come up with an eloquent, thoughtful response such as what some others have presented. Unfortunately, I'm so flabbergasted by the ignorance of his whole statement that the above is the best I can come up with....

..oh yea. The above and: FOOTBALL-BAT

thank you,
that'll be all

Comment #198 - Posted by: active duty female at July 10, 2008 9:15 PM

#128: Spark by AdvoCare. Trust me, from personal experience, it's a lifesaver. Also, Coach Burgener at Mike's Gym recommends it, too.

Comment #199 - Posted by: jNeal at July 10, 2008 9:16 PM

"any program that names exercises after women is contrary to our Core Values."

What exactually is your core value? That men are better than women?

Well I went to the games and the women I saw there were badass and would love to have them protecting me.

Comment #200 - Posted by: Darren at July 10, 2008 9:16 PM

So here's the score for today's discussion
Good guys 0- Bad Guys 1

I am shocked and dismayed at the extent of the disparaging remarks against just one man who bravely and nobly serves America. As with any senior leader (be it political or military), not all decisions are made by a single person but rather a community of people. Jon Picker is a Navy Captain. That's the equivalent to an Army Colonel, and not to be considered a lightweight in the grand scheme of things. And by posting his work e-mail on a public site puts his ability to do his job in jeopardy. His job, at the end of the day, is the security of our countries.
Stop and think a moment here. Do you honestly believe that the enemies of the state don't lurk here? I can guarantee that the Taliban and Iraqi insurgents are gathering intelligence right now! CrossFit is strengthening our militaries and law enforcement. CrossFit is likely training their armies too.
I don't often wade into these discussions as I am Canadian and American issues are something I am woefully under-educated at best. But the military is a topic I understand. I served my country as an Armoured Officer. I also happen to be married to a senior officer in the Spec Ops community. I am painfully aware of the long days these brave men work in a day, 12-16 hours daily. PT is the first thing to be sacrificed for the sake of planning and operating. Then these fine men and women in uniforms need to go home to their families and try to fit in time with them. it's a tough balance! Time is precious for the families as the troops deploy for over 50% of the year, every year, as they fight for our freedoms on foreign soil.
I see first hand the potency of CrossFit. My husband was brought on board by me. I was fortunate enough to take a level 1 cert last year in Vancouver. He in turn, has taken this knowledge and delivers CrossFit to his troops at work.
Capt Picker just needs to see first hand the effectiveness. Calling him names and degrading his rank and position does none of us any service. Remember, he is still a man in uniform and his loyal service to YOU (and I am pointing my finger) ensures YOUR freedom of speech. Call him what you like. I am proud of our forces.
If you don't stand behind our troops, feel free to stand in front of them.

Comment #201 - Posted by: Bev K at July 10, 2008 9:18 PM

Where is BIG WINDY!!!! Hope you guys are staying safe down range. Keep the oily side down for me fellas..

Comment #202 - Posted by: darrell at July 10, 2008 9:19 PM

reminds me of

"A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects." -Robert A. Heinlein

Comment #203 - Posted by: AndrewBueno at July 10, 2008 9:23 PM

I am a Command Fitness Leader at a shore command in the Navy. I've been in for almost 8 years and have been working to get the out-of-standards sailors back in shape at my last two commands. The Navy's idea of fitness is a joke. Senior enlisted complain of back pain and get a light duty chit from medical so they don't have to PT then go play 18 holes. Department heads topping 300 lbs and well over the upper limit for body fat and processing enlist for discharge for the same. It's all politics and it sucks. We stopped using the Navy hired civilian "trainers" that MWR provides because they are in worse shape then the guys they're suppose to train. Even the staff in charge of teaching the Command Fitness Leader(CFL) course have pot bellies and show up in the morning to teach the class with McDonald's bags in hand. The Navy even allows the "cardio" portion of the PFA to be performed on the stationary bike or elliptical now... And people FAIL that too!

Since starting CrossFit and bringing it to our Fitness Enhancement Program we are seeing huge improvement in fitness and large drops in %BF. This is the best program out there hands down. I just can't wait for the fall PFA to come around so I can run the 1.5 miles backward and still lap everyone. Thank you, Coach, for such an amazing program and life style that EVERYONE can benefit from.

Comment #204 - Posted by: Alan at July 10, 2008 9:24 PM

Bingo, loved that vid, loved seeing those shots of our fellow Gamers, and loved the tune. Kerry, Sevan, Tony, (I have no idea how to spell it?), that was a tour de force, can't watch it enough.

Disclaimer: I'm a senior Navy officer with ~19 years of service. I have been to Baghdad but never had to walk my soft pink body down the back streets. Less than a dozen convoys in country, only one exciting blackhawk ride through the Baghdad night. Survived a fair amount of incoming due to my good luck and their bad aim. I logged over 200 combat hours in/around Afghanistan, and worked on the flight deck of the USS ENTERPRISE (world's most dangerous non-combat environment) and others, where I was responsible for over 5,000 safe carrier catapult launches and recoveries, and trained multiple officers to do the same. Take that for what it's worth. I take it as I have done what the Navy asked me to do, when they asked, and did it as well as I could. As GEN Lee so eloquently stated, 'Do your duty in all things. You can do no more, and should never settle for less.'

Men like CAPT Picker have for over 20 years worked their asses off to meet every hurdle the Navy placed in their way. They have excelled as aviators (in his case a helo pilot), deployed on ships and to places most of you would not like to spend years of your life, spent many hours trying to get the best out of old airplanes the airlines would be prosecuted for using, much of it flown less than 200 feet above the water where an aircraft or aviator failure would result in his carcass becoming fish food, and always working like a dog to find any semblance of family/work balance. To be a Captain, he has excelled at the Navy’s toughest job, command of an operational unit. He has competed against and been promoted over approximately 95% of his peers. To disrespect his accomplishment and his service over a two paragraph blurb is shallow and wrong.

An accomplished man and patriot can be uninformed and I challenge you not to let that make you forget that he’s still a patriot and put his ass into physical and moral challenge in defense of our nation’s constitution.

I saw this officer's comment in my email inbox this AM. It was extraordinarily frustrating. After a day to stew on it, I think he's mostly right. After all, factually, rhabdo can be caused by CrossFit, as Coach warns. There are many SME's who point out that CrossFit movements are 'not safe.' I think given the limits of his knowledge about CrossFit, and his position in an organization that does not and really cannot embrace rapid change (you try and make an govt agency of 350,000 nimble; good luck. Still, holy cow, it's so much better than it used to be), he’s making a decent call. I’ve no guesses as to why he thinks he should make it, and I’m glad he cannot stop me from leading my co-workers in CrossFit style exercises tomorrow morning.

I do not think the Navy should adopt CrossFit. I think the Navy, as an agent of our govt and therefore a politically shaped entity, cannot embrace anything as raw, unpolished and uncompromising as CrossFit. CrossFit the organization is deliberately not designed to seek mass approval. It has warts, it publishes material that is unfiltered and very probable to offend, and there’s no way a govt agency can embrace that. I oppose Navy adoption of CrossFit like a oppose govt taking over health care – neither party would be bettered by the relationship.

What the Navy should do though is examine the information. Functional movements have potential for short term performance and long term vitality for Sailors. Using variation to maximize adaptation is sound and costs nothing, risks nothing. High intensity training, specifically learning how to train the glycolitic energy pathway vice just the oxidative, is common sense once understood. Safety was addressed by the Canadian military and they determined by testing that CrossFit workouts to be more safe and efficacious than their traditional PT. The Navy can and should take a similar approach – no need to take your word for it or mine that air squats and pullups are safe. Experiment and document.

In short, CrossFit has identified truths about fitness, which I hope the Navy will embrace. But I sincerely hope the Navy does not try and implement CrossFit. If it does, can you imagine the masses of people that will be forced to implement CrossFit? Is it even conceivable that the relevant concepts, and technical proficiencies can be adequately captured and taught by a bureaucracy of 350,000? Think of the masses that will get what would have to be substandard institutionalized, govt sanitized and congressionally approved “CrossFit” and will be turned off and turned away from the thing that you and I love and identify ourselves by?

That part about the named WODs being contrary to Navy Core Values took me by surprise, but to the uninitiated, thinking of someone saying “I just did Diane, and she left me sweaty, flat on my back and weak in the knees” does seem to wander into a zone of discussion that is all bad when in the context of an institution that had to work hard to make a culture that was gender neutral. I am proud to say that I have been underway at sea and at war, in flight and on the ground in Iraq with Navy women who did their duty. Workouts named for girls is just another indicator that CrossFit and the politically manipulable govt agency that projects power from the sea are not compatible - per se.

I do wish that CAPT Picker, or anyone else that loves their wife, their daughter, or their mother, could have seen the absolutely magnificent women at the CrossFit Games. Some were beautiful in any and every sense of the word, some in more subtle ways, but they were all massively POWERFUL. I will guarantee that none of them will ever apologize to anyone for their gender, never feel ashamed of being the ‘weaker sex.’ Self pity and pandering about equality was not what made those women the powerhouses they were and are – no, it was guts, sweat and gumption focused through back building work that did it. Thanks to whatever is holy, the CrossFit Games were their venue to show the world what they have, who they are. A look at that row of brave competitors compared to a line of runway models walking funny and wearing strange clothing? No freaking comparison in my mind which one exudes more femininity and human virtue. You all got to see maybe 90 seconds of it on today’s video, I saw two days of it. It was awesome to see. I’ll never forget it.

I’m going to the next Games I can get to and I’m taking my kids, especially my daughter, next time. I’m going to contact the folks that run the Navy PT program and dialogue with them about what fitness is. It’s friggin great day to be alive.


Comment #205 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 205 44 yoa at July 10, 2008 9:25 PM

bev, i dont think the taliban are reading through the crossfit posts lol

Comment #206 - Posted by: RSD 21/m/190#/6'1 at July 10, 2008 9:25 PM

Bev K (Post #211)

Great post... retract the "idiot" statement, agree that he needs to be educated though!

Comment #207 - Posted by: walkerrunner at July 10, 2008 9:27 PM

Army Physical Fitness Test (female)

Exhibit A (before CrossFit): 16 Sep 2007
28yrs old, 185lbs, 70"
Pushups: 38
Situps : 68
2Mile Run: 16:02

Exhibit B (after Crossfit): 12 Feb 2008
18yrs old, 162lbs, 70"
Pushups: 54
Situps: 86
2Mile Run: 13:41

Exhibit C: Illness / Injuries

Comment #208 - Posted by: gryf at July 10, 2008 9:31 PM

Comment #213 - Posted by: AndrewBueno


Comment #209 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 205 44 yoa at July 10, 2008 9:33 PM

This guy is awesome! He is the embodiment of what Crossfitters are NOT.

He has not experienced the hard work and rewards of CF.

He has not concept of how to scale CF by his remarks regarding saftey.

TO conclude If I had the misfortune of serving with him, his narrow minded and self importance would put me in more danger than using CF as a tool to improve myself and help my fellow comrades in times of danger and difficulty.

Perhaps when he removes his ego from the room he's in he'll be able to see CF website? :-)

God help you Sailor... you need it

Comment #210 - Posted by: Pete NZ- 26 / M / 70kg at July 10, 2008 9:37 PM

LOL! Except for the SEALS, most of the Navy are a bunch of blubber piles anyways. Even the Air Force has a tougher PT program. I had an Army buddy that was assigned to a Navy base, and he used to joke it was 3 years before he realized that "fat chief" wasn't one word.

... from a recently retired Army SF guy ;)

PS: If you're Navy and you take offense at this, keep in mind it's not directed at you, seeing as you do crossfit.

Comment #211 - Posted by: Ed H 43/M/5'11/205 at July 10, 2008 9:38 PM

I have one hung up in the queue, guess that's what happens if you thrown down 2 pages.

Ken C - I'd like to point out that, having seen you kick some ass at the Games, you are being exceedingly modest when you characterize yourself as a candy ass lawyer. The lawyer part, I'll take your word for; frankly just admitting in public that you are one could be proof you are not a candy ass.


Comment #212 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 205 44 yoa at July 10, 2008 9:42 PM

Evidently he hasn't even attempted to look at the site or even try the workouts. I'm in the military and this by far in my opinion is the best workout you can do. Through the workouts, it allows your body to achieve a full range of motion making the body less prone to injury. I think the Capt. needs to reevaluate his statement.

Comment #213 - Posted by: frog at July 10, 2008 9:42 PM

Hey everyone, i went through the list of crossfit gyms and training facilities and i might have missed it, but i'm looking for a gym in fresno, ca or maybe clovis, ca. If you all could help me i'd appreciate it. Thanks a lot!


Comment #214 - Posted by: Dave at July 10, 2008 9:47 PM

Comment #206 - Posted by: dragoon

Tip of the hat to you gents for doing the testing for yourselves, vice taking the word of some "SMEs." I hope the implementation goes as well as the test and selection. Paul

Comment #215 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 205 44 yoa at July 10, 2008 9:48 PM

Remember when Ships were made of wood & Men were made of steal..?
.. That's about the last time the Core Values truely upheld. Honor, Courage, Commitment.. Honor- I never cheat form on a WOD or lie about my score. Courage- I always meet every WOD w/everything I got despite how scray they look or how much they are going to suck. Commitment- I will never stop till I'm done, making myself the best I can be.

My Father is probably puttng on his Blues & headed over to the Capt's, a Line Officer I'm sure, house to kick his Arss & show him what a real Sailor looks like as I type.

With that out of my system. The Captain is pointing out reasons why the military of these United States are no longer what they once were. To think it all started w/Tail Hook. The Navy needs to go back to kickng ass and stop caring about feelings. Speacial intrest groups and this kind of crap is going to be the down fall of this Nation!

Get some, Go again!

HOO-YA! Fair WInds & Following Seas!

Comment #216 - Posted by: DJ at July 10, 2008 9:49 PM

In regards to the Sailor:

I can't imagine a PT program that is LESS oriented toward the individual than military fitness programs. The Army currently has a program that is producing weak bodies at an alarming rate. Taking that into consideration, imagine what the Navy is up to! With the exception of NSWC and other units that fall under SOCOM (most of whom do Crossfit), the military is not by any means, a "SME" of fitness. I would much rather go to combat with my Crossfit buddies (who I did go to combat with) than with some of the fat-@$$es I've seen in the regular Army, Navy, and AF.

-Actual Soldier

Comment #217 - Posted by: Mike at July 10, 2008 9:52 PM

I understand your desire to defend the reputation of a fellow Commissioned Officer, however: I swore an oath to support and defend. I did not swear an oath to blind obedience. When someone issues a statement that is so far off from easily researched facts, they should expect anything BUT my reverence. No one, regardless of their rank or position, is above being taken to task when what they say strays so far from reality.

I want leaders who are willing and able to look at a ‘whole picture’. It is my sincere and honest opinion that his statement is well deserving of the censure and derision found on these pages.

You're right; he is in a high position of leadership within my nations military. And I expected better.

Comment #218 - Posted by: gryf at July 10, 2008 9:53 PM

It's odd to think that a CO would be against his people finding new ways to better themselves both physically and mentally. I understand his concern with physical injury, but I think everyone who gets involved with CrossFit (or any exercise program) is aware of the potential risks. I'm in the Navy now with aspirations of going SEAL, but even if I didn't want to do that I love CrossFit because of all the benefits I've gotten from it and I would hope that other Sailors (and soldiers, airmen, Marines, etc.) would want to reap these benefits.

From the Navy standpoint, I agree with #16's comment that the captains remarks lead me to be embarrassed about be in the Navy, which is unfortunate because I would hope that all servicemen would feel proud about their commitment. And like has been said, the number of pushups and situps that I can do in 2 minutes really won't help me drag my buddy out of a combat zone, or out of the water.

Comment #219 - Posted by: Adam at July 10, 2008 9:57 PM

Hello Capt Picker.

I am a 37 year old federal officer in Canada who had the pleasure of serving my country in the Army years ago. I have always strived to achieve a high level of fitness for my own purposes as well as for my profession. My workouts have mostly consisted of running/weight training in some form or another. I am quite proud to say that I have always been at the top level of fitness in any tests or certifications that I have done.

However, as I have gotten older I have started to suffer joint pains in my wrists, elbows, knees and shoulders. Nothing I did would fix it, whether it was drugs, physio, massage, individualized training programs, going easier/taking breaks from working out, though small improvements were had. I went for x-rays, ultrasounds, MRIs, and even been to see orthopaedic surgeons. Unfortunately every doctor I saw said that it was merely a price that I had to pay to be in good shape and could only offer more drugs, physio, massage, etc.

A year ago a friend introduced me to Crossfit. Since then my joint problems are mostly non-existent and remarkably my level of fitness has increased to a level even greater than when I was in the Army. Last year I was playing ice hockey (an intermediate-exertion sport that requires long bouts of cardio intermixed with short bursts of power). We would play for an hour and 45 minutes and I would have trouble maintaining my energy. Since Crossfit, this year I find I have ‘gas in the tank’ from the start to the finish. Amazing.

While I have no doubt that Crossfit is not for everyone I do believe that it has merit with certain people. Those being dedicated individuals who enjoy challenging themselves, want or need a high level of fitness, and desire performance in many different types of athletic performance as opposed to ‘specializing’ in one type of exertion. These are the qualities that I think would be of a great benefit to a soldier or sailor, fireman, or officer.

Thank you,

Comment #220 - Posted by: Chris at July 10, 2008 10:02 PM

If "safety" is your primary fear, then why are you in the navy? Its not exactly what i would call safe

Not naming workouts after girls? Wtf? he obviously has not seen these Crossfit girls, they could all whip his ass!

Comment #221 - Posted by: DevinFord_@_CFsuffolk at July 10, 2008 10:05 PM

Don't blame Capt. Picker. Blame the "Mothers of America" who call their member of Congress when their precious Johnny writes home from bootcamp that he got a sniffle. They're the ones that have created the Safety-first and Operational Risk Management culture that exists in the military today.

Comment #222 - Posted by: Ron at July 10, 2008 10:18 PM

The captain may have a point... squatting below parrellel (buttocks lower than the knees) is the best way I know of to blow out your knees. I love the excerises; they mimick the fire service very well. But I will never go as low as you guys instruct on the squats or cleans so I can continue to have a fulfilling career in my department.

Comment #223 - Posted by: stash at July 10, 2008 10:19 PM

Good grief, what a p---y that guy is. I sure hope there aren't many more like him in the armed forces, otherwise we'll never kill all the terrorists.

Put Coach in charge of a ship headed for the Middle East, staff it with Crossfitters and lets get it on!

Comment #224 - Posted by: Kevin at July 10, 2008 10:20 PM

The Navy (more particularly those defining its culture of fitness) seems to be more satisfied with the way America (or the FDA) defines average fitness than it is concerned with genuine fitness. It's disappointing, but practically speaking most Sailors don't have to be as fit as Marines or Soldiers. One would hope that the pride that often attends American Service Men (and women) would compel them to display the core values as much physically as it does intellectually or even spiritually. Yet, that isn't the case. Navy, Look Sharp In Your Body, It's Part of Your Uniform. You Rock Nasty Girls of GPT!

Comment #225 - Posted by: Chaplain_of_Marines at July 10, 2008 10:25 PM

Lots of passion on this issue. This is the most rest day traffic I've seen...and the day has hardly begun.

Seems that the dissenting remarks on this thread swirl around the fact that our community is showing a lack of respect to career officer.

Fair enough. But consider this statement:

"Additionally, any program that names exercises after women is contrary to our Core Values."

We should rightfully question the Commander's ability to adequately fulfill the duties of his position if that is his stance. This statement shows a total lack of respect for the women serving our country.

Comment #226 - Posted by: Rob F at July 10, 2008 10:28 PM

First, that video was great. After watching it I'm re-evaluating my decision to make today a rest day.

Second, after reading the Captain’s comments I'm nearly too angry to write. Such attitudes are pervasive throughout the military, including my active-duty Army Infantry unit (I’m an infantryman myself). Ignorant, uniformed opinions and fear of change and challenge are rampant.

Physical training each morning is not about becoming the most fit, elite fighting machine that we can. It’s not about challenging yourself mentally and physically. But rather, simply looking good, staying instep, and being “dress right dress” (soldiers will know what that means). Imagine performing Helen at a pace that everyone at the affiliate can do together, at the same time, while singing cadence. It might look good, but be useless as a workout.

This article and comments in another from the Army Times (concerning a new PT manual), also shed light on the quitters’ attitude I often witness. Fear of new challenges is common, because they maybe difficult or one might fail. There’s complacency to do just enough to meet “the standard” and no more. Exhibitions of heart like Kallista’s C&J performance at the games are rare in my unit. Too many soldiers here know of Crossfit and are afraid to even try it. Unfortunately, in our Armed Forces there are those cold, timid souls as described by Theodore Roosevelt.

Yet, there are also many determined, hardworking, and dedicated soldiers, marines, sailors, and airmen for whom the mission does come first and not standard military bullshit. It’s just a shame there aren’t more of them.

Since finding Crossfit I have seen a dramatic shift in my fitness, mission readiness and capabilities. I’m a big guy, so running isn’t easy, yet I now move better and faster than many of my comrades when we’re wearing our full combat load of about 50 to 75lbs. I can overpower a combatant, throw a man through a wall, carry a friend out of harms way or lift him from a burning vehicle. I have discovered that when I think I’m tired, broken, and can do no more, that I’m wrong; there is strength left… stamina remains… I can continue… I WILL persevere. Thank you Crossfit. Shouldn’t these be the goals for any military fitness program? What are we doing everyday if its not?

Comment #227 - Posted by: sasquatch m/30/6'4"/275# at July 10, 2008 10:29 PM

Sport med docs and especially Military docs are trained to be ultra-conservative in their thinking about these things. Crossfit is a system that uses empirical evidence, which is supported by good research but still flies in the face of traditional fitness regimens. This is just a case of someone with limited knowledge reacting to something new with outdated logic and a heavy dose of fear. As for naming the workouts after girls, he should try one before he assumes that Crossfit is being pejorative or disrespectful of women. Any Crossfitter worth his/her salt has a hefty respect for Fran and all the Ladies. I dream of a day when every gym is a Crossfit gym and doubters like this watch from the sidelines hunched over their walkers and canes.

Comment #228 - Posted by: Marko Maehler at July 10, 2008 10:29 PM

Sounds like we have a name for our rest days..."The Picker"

Comment #229 - Posted by: tom at July 10, 2008 10:33 PM

RE: Comment #211 - Posted by Bev K

I just thought I'd thank Bev for adding some perspective to our discussion. I think we all need to be reminded to focus on the argument and not the person. The one thing that puts me off about forums like these is the sheer number of ad hominem comments. I don't think it's fair or productive to make personal attacks on this Captain--or anyone for that matter. His ideas may be antiquated and misinformed but I think that has more to with the system and certainly isn't indicative of him as an officer or a person. To make pot shots at a person's character is cheap and easy. To make an intelligent and thoughtful reply to his ideas is something else entirely. It's much more difficult but far more rewarding for everyone involved.

Thanks, Bev.

Comment #230 - Posted by: dragoon at July 10, 2008 10:37 PM




Comment #231 - Posted by: ROBERT SUTHERLAND at July 10, 2008 10:40 PM


I am a chiropractor with 4 years experience and have been doing crossfit for 2.5 years, and exercising and playing sports all my life. In chiropractic school we were taught that functional exercises such as those employed by crossfit are far superior to isolation exercises, and many journal articles, textbooks, etc support that.

Your chiropractor is giving you incorrect, outdated information that a lot of us have heard before unfortunately.

Doing Crossfit workouts with GOOD FORM and full range of motion will make you healthier, fitter, and less likely to get injured. Poor form of course in any exercise does lead to injury. And many people have pre-existing sub-clinical "injuries" that become symptomatic when they first try doing functional, intense exercise with full ROM. Most of the population is so deconditioned that simple bodyweight exercises may be dangerous or impossible without scaling or assistance. That is probably the population that your chiropractor has become used to seeing in his office. And even those who are in relatively good shape often have no idea how to do these exercises properly and safely. Proper training and instruction is essential to avoid injury with this stuff.

I work out at Crossfit Oakland and find that in general crossfitters are the healthiest, fittest, most injury resistant people I know. Most doctors, chiropractors included, have a very poor understanding of exercise and have read or been told a lot of incorrect information.

I recommend Crossfit to anyone who will listen, including my patients. Unfortunately, many of them are injured and suffering from back pain, etc precisely because they never work out, or are completely unbalanced from overspecialization and overtraining.

Crossfit is completely safe and incredibly effective when used as directed. As directed includes scaling, starting slowly, listening to your body, and maintaining good form at all times.

Keep it up, you're obviously listening to your body already. Human beings were designed/evolved for functional exercise at high intensity. That is why it feels so good, even when it hurts.

Comment #232 - Posted by: Allen at July 10, 2008 10:42 PM

I have to shake my head and ponder the future of my Navy. These comments actually drive me more. I have seen a trend starting that has been spreading for awhile and this only amplifies it. I personally support Cross Fit and am introducing it to new Sailors and Marines on a daily basis. Thank you Coach for introducing me to the Girls and Heros, they and everybody involved in this program motivate and encourage me.

Comment #233 - Posted by: Petty Officer First Class Len Nuanez at July 10, 2008 10:42 PM

I'm wondering which core values the 'girl' workouts violate. And wouldn't the Navy be violating those same 'core values' when ever they named a boat after a girl?

Comment #234 - Posted by: Kaleb at July 10, 2008 10:45 PM

Awesome video! Can't wait for next year!

Comment #235 - Posted by: freddy c._one world at July 10, 2008 10:51 PM

apart from the weird comment about naming workouts after women, that comment is nonsense. Also, as someone who has been dealing with a bum knee (underwent 2 surgeries), crossfit is the best thing I have done for my knee. The strength I have gained in my legs has virtually made my nagging knee pain go away.

Thanks crossfit

Comment #236 - Posted by: Brendan P at July 10, 2008 10:59 PM

I just want to say as a woman who is celebrating finally finding a program that is regularly challenging and diversified, it makes me sad to read the comment about "naming workouts after women." This is probably the first website for fitness I've seen that did not emblazon its front page with big-boobed, blond 18 year old fitness models. The women on the site are real, and really fit, and good role-models for everyone else that wants to be in great shape. Lastly, if anyone's pissed about naming workouts after women, you should submit a letter to national weather authorities complaining about naming hurricanes, too.. because we were all soo offended by naming that hurricane Katrina, right?!

Comment #237 - Posted by: Megs at July 10, 2008 11:08 PM

I Crossfit and have lost over 20lbs. I am also a member of the Navy. I respect that the Capt. has his opinion, but Crossfit has changed my life and will not give it up. The idea that girls names are against our core values (Honor, Courage, Commitment) is wrong and short sided.

Comment #238 - Posted by: Todd W. at July 10, 2008 11:10 PM

Says the guy who's biggest and baddest war machines are referred to in the feminine...

Comment #239 - Posted by: yoritomo at July 10, 2008 11:17 PM

I know logic won't get me very far, but referring to ships with the feminine pronoun dates back over 600 years according to this New Yorker article:

Also, in the list of current US Navy ships, I'm having a hard time find many named after a woman, aside from the Amelia Earhart:

Comment #240 - Posted by: Ron at July 10, 2008 11:26 PM

It occurs to me that the good captain, in focusing on the fact that WODs are named after women, forgot that most of the Hero WODs are named for fallen Navy personnel.

Let's count:
Navy: JT, Michael, Murph, Jason, Badger, Nate, Tommy V (7) - 58.34%
Army: Daniel, Josh, Joshie (3) - 25%
USAF: Griff (1) - 8.33%
LAPD: Randy (1) - 8.33%

That makes a dozen Hero WODs, of which the Navy accounts for more than half. All of the Hero WODs are for sailors, soldiers, an airman, and a police officer who died serving their country.

Contrary to core values, sir? I hope not.

Comment #241 - Posted by: Apollo Lee at July 10, 2008 11:28 PM

One more active duty Navy chiming in from Hawaii and CrossFit Oahu. Shipmates, let's keep evangelizing. It's the twilight of jumping jacks and formation runs. True camaraderie is built when your friends are screaming "FIVE MORE, YOU CAN DO IT, WOOOO!"

I won't rest until the semi-annual fitness test is a HERO workout and the Navy bases bulldoze Burger King and Popeyes, replacing them with whole food markets. The revolution is now.

Comment #242 - Posted by: Tom at July 10, 2008 11:46 PM

First off I want to say I completely disagree with Capt Jon Picker. I am in the Navy and not satisfied with current PT standards or the Physical fitness of personnel coming into and being allowed to stay in the military. As for the Core Values I live them not just recite them to sound good and I do not believe that naming the WOD's after girls goes against my values.
For Burl #57 and JC#76 don't group all Navy people together. I'm on my third deployment boots on ground to the desert. Afghanistan, Qatar, Kuwait. And my buddy's been to Iraq twice and currently in Afghanistan. So there are more then a handful of us "regular sailors" that do our part and with out those grey hulls dominating the ocean as the greatest Navy in the world none of ya'll would have any success on the ground. You have to look at the big picture of war. Second I've served at several joint commands and I can say that all services have personnel that embarrass the uniform. I've PT'd with Army, Marines and Air Force and destroyed them and I've had a couple of them get up on me. Physical Fitness across the military as a whole needs to look at crossfit as the new standard and start changing their policy.
For Craig DeMattia #65 Hoo-Yah SARDOG. Rescue Swimmer class 009-2001

Comment #243 - Posted by: HLCIV at July 10, 2008 11:47 PM

I missed you RON #251. To repeat I am still in the Navy and I can assure you we still refer to our ships as she. The internet only knows what people type into it and just like people its not always right. Try talking to the people in the business to get your info.

Comment #244 - Posted by: HLCIV at July 10, 2008 11:53 PM

#255 - you misunderstood. My comment was aimed at those who do not distinguish between referring a(all) ship with a female pronoun, and "named a boat after a girl". I known that the USS Ronald Reagan is still referred to as "she".

Comment #245 - Posted by: Ron at July 11, 2008 12:04 AM

First off i do respect everyone who is current military, and past. This is not only because of my family history in every branch, but also my upcoming elistment in the Air Force.

The most disheartening thing about this article is just the fact that it looks like he just spit out something that someone else told him to say, and that no one bothered actually reading the philosophies around crossfit, they just went and looked at stats and exercises. Also the broad comment about the girl workouts is something that just seems a little off kilter. It always sucks when one person tries to speak for a group of people, especially when they make all said people look bad in a certain light.

Obviously for us here on this site we have a common goal of bettering ourselves and others around us. It is something that every community strives for and our way may be different, but we are looking for success just the same.

Again thank you to all that have served, thank you to those trying to make a change, and ill be looking to do the same as soon as i get the opportunity.

thank you

Comment #246 - Posted by: Kevin McMahon at July 11, 2008 12:10 AM

I introduced Crossfit to some of my friends some took to it others fell by the way side, saying it was unsafe…all my Personal training Clients now do Crossfit a few months down the line just by looking at body transformation you can see the Crossfitters are ‘leaps & bounds’ ahead (Parkour pun intended). One chap, an ex Royal Marine and now a sports rehabilitation specialist says it’s the best functional programme he has ever come across Quote ‘You get more injuries from bowling and yoga than Crossfit’

Comment #247 - Posted by: Todd Ferguson at July 11, 2008 12:13 AM


This is the type of non-sense I once dealt with when I volunteered to help the Navy's Mandatory fitness program. I thrashed the dog-shit out of them and they the 1st Class's and Chiefs we're embarassed at there on weakness, so they asked that I not yell so much or tone it down because they the "obese" didn't like what I was teaching. This was long before I knew what Crossfit was, back in 2000 timeframe.

For better of for worse most of the Navy is ridiculous. They allow obesity in the ranks. Rather than fix there problems they come up with Band-aid solutions. Ask Doug Chapman from HyperFitUSA about some of his trials and tribulations dealing with the Navy.

That is not to say that the Navy lacks athletes. They have thousands of hard-charger-fitness-fanatics. The problem I see is culture. They took away he drinking fighting and whoring of the old Navy which though it lacked a physical fitness aspect promoted a manliness(albiet reckless) that craved adventure and conflict. Now its more like Welfare-to-Work for a significant number of Sailors. They are not culturally expected to be in shape like Marines are. They're reasoning is that if they wanted to be in shape they'd have joined the Corps, or taken the extra-ordinary step of going to BUD/s.

This Capt is probably some wanker from some stateside command whose never seen a battlefield let alone spent much time underway in hostile zones. If I'm wrong about where he's been and what he's done and is a real "fleeter," than his comments are even more dangerous.

If people remember the U.S.S. Cole they should also remember that brave sailors worked through exhausting conditions doing extremely hard salvage work that lead to the Cole not sinking in the harbor. I wonder if those sailors have any after actions regarding fitness programs from Commericial Off the Shelf Products.

No this Captain is a product of the New Navy, one where Dungeons and Dragons nerds are more the norm than the ballsy, obnoxious but brilliant in battle Boatswains mates of yore. You've come a long way Navy, you stay classy.

Comment #248 - Posted by: Petey at July 11, 2008 12:17 AM

# 252 Those sailors where not regular navy, there is a difference
Navy PT?
The Army PT program has not improved since the 70’s unless you are in a special unit or special Division
The only air force personnel I have seen do PT are PJ's and the Airmen that call in Air strikes for the Army

Comment #249 - Posted by: Pete at July 11, 2008 12:19 AM

So they can tailor fitness programs to every single soldier?? I am impressed, I did not know they had that kind of resources nor commitment...

Comment #250 - Posted by: Phil Moncel at July 11, 2008 12:34 AM

Uh - Who Cares?!?

He's only a Captain (O-6). It's not like he really has any real pull in much - this is where they send PERS officers before they retire.

Chill out - you're messing with my rest day Chi.

Comment #251 - Posted by: DiablosBLVD at July 11, 2008 12:55 AM

As a Navy Brat (aka Navy son), I can say that through my life of going to the Navy gym the only workouts that I've seen are:
1) basketball
2) bodybuilding
3) judo, kalahi
4) biking & treadmills and
5) machines

It was only a month ago that I started people doing the CrossFit WODs right next to me! (I thought they were mimicking me though hahaha) I'm thinking about doing my part in the military, and outside of the Martial Artists, I wouldn't want to fight beside anyone else but a CrossFitter. Thanks, Coaches!

Comment #252 - Posted by: ogre212 23M/5'10"/190 at July 11, 2008 12:57 AM

A funny thing happened to me on my way to where we are today. I've tried the mainstream fitness thing and I've tried some of the wackier things. Apart from a cupboard full of lycra I also acquired and maintained a steady stream of shoulder, ankle, elbow and lower back issues. Not to mention acquiring more than my fair share of excess lard along the way.

A year ago I stumbled on this site and fell in love. I felt challenged, I felt inspired and I felt a little threatened... so I did what any red-blooded human does - I jumped firmly in with both feet, gave everything I had at the first WOD. I persevered because that's what I've been bred to do. I repeated the exrecise the following day and so on for two cycles. I was in pieces and made myself quite ill.

After an absence I tried again. Only this time I trawled the website, I read some of the postings, absorbed the advice that people give for free and worked my way to it.

There's passion, belief and integrity in abundance on this site. Don't ever lose it but spare a thought for the uninitiated (for we were all there once). Think of all the people who ask the questions that have already been answered in the FAQs. Think of Kempie and JWB_atm_93 amongst others who do the leg-work for the newbies. Without them or solid advice to hand can you blame somebody for taking this at face value and thinking "Whoa! Sod that for a game of soldiers [feel free to insert other branch of service here]".

Yes, we would like our officers to fully engage brain before putting mouth in gear but life is full of disappointments. Let's keep our perspective, let's keep our spirit, let the results shout louder than our words ever will.

Thank you coach and thank you to everybody in the community. It's an honour and a privilege to waddle in your shadows. I know one day I'll hit your stride but please keep flying your colours while the world catches up.

Yours in awe.

Comment #253 - Posted by: Not just fat, differently conditioned too! at July 11, 2008 12:59 AM

#234 - Stash: I'm really not going to get into this because I realize that I won't change your mind. I just wanted to ask what you're basing this conclusion off of? Last I checked, there isn't an epidemic of CrossFitters blowing out their knees. On the contrary, nearly every one that has had knee problems (myself included with a failed PCL repair) reports significant improvement. There is an abundance of research demonstrating that PROPER squatting to below parallel is good for the knees.

As for Capt. Picker, it's unfortunate but not surprising. I just checked into a new command about a month ago, so I'm the "new guy" in the gym, and I'm doing all this "crazy stuff." As usual, I'm already feeling the "pressure" from the typical gym goers. I've stopped trying to fight the system. It will come along in time, all I can do is continue to do my thing and spread the word when someone asks me what I'm doing.

Comment #254 - Posted by: Alex Europa at July 11, 2008 1:00 AM

I've been in the Army for 10 years and I've never been in such great shape and after only 2 months doing Crossfit. I don't care what the squids say I'm sticking to it. I dont care if you name the WODs after bodily functions, it works.

The Army has a huge problem with weight control, no pun intended, because the PT program is deplorable. I'm talking about the FM that governs it, not the unit programs. Maybe they should look at results, as I increased my APFT score by 15% after 30 days doing Crossfit.

I guess they would rather I waste 2 hours as I do what others in the gym do...1 rep followed by 15 minutes of rest while I look at my muscles in the mirror, sitting on the bench.
Give me a break.

Love the program Coach, and as you know there are several of us military forward and rear that are devotees and let the results speak for themselves.

Comment #255 - Posted by: mdbyrne at July 11, 2008 1:20 AM

Great video!

Comment #256 - Posted by: Matt Shatzkin at July 11, 2008 1:28 AM

The 0-6's comments are unfortunately more common than rare. My chief, UTM and Commander all have made similar comments. My military fire department has zero other members who do crossfit. They criticize it for being "too short" and "I won't get a pump," even though the see me making sweat angels on the floor. my fitness monitor recently told me that I should stop doing cleans because I’m not lifting the weight, I’m just throwing it with explosive momentum.(my bad)I constantly get warnings that I need to include cardio in my fitness routine. Letter of reprimand for firefighter fran because I was "wasting air". My base health and wellness center ("THE EXPERTS") are against this crossfit taking up spinning and power yoga space. "If crossfit really worked you would ace your fitness test." 7:57 1.5 mile and half, maxed out pushups/sit-up, but this darn 35" waist. At least where I’m at, these are the common opinions of crossfit. Maybe I’m just a bad rep, but I think the proof is in the pudding. I guess I will just be a crossfit recluse.

p.s. I need 5-6 more serving of grains in my diet too.

Comment #257 - Posted by: Walker-p at July 11, 2008 1:40 AM

The Navy has always sucked. This post doesnt change that and I would have expected nothing less..

I got 12 Years in and no other fitness program in the military that I have seen even comes close...

LOL @ the NAVY, and Officers in general.

PS..THE ONLY thing that is "hurt" was my pride becasue I now know how unfit I was prior to x-fit.

Comment #258 - Posted by: SSG_Masdeu at July 11, 2008 1:44 AM

any sailors CF in hawaii?relatively new to the island and CF. would love to find a local support structure. stationed in shipyard so i have some free time. would love to get some!

Comment #259 - Posted by: willie at July 11, 2008 1:45 AM


Awesome pic and even better video on the games. Congrats on placing so high.

Jon Picker....it's a shame because of your mindset/influence that so many in Navy will miss their opportunity to become true warriors. Don't worry, for everyone you sway there are 10 others doing CF behind closed doors.

Comment #260 - Posted by: Matt Hunt at July 11, 2008 1:58 AM

that video was phenomenal. i've only been CF'ing for about 2 months now, and i'd be happy to become at least half as fit as the men and women in that video.

on another note, i've been in the navy for almost 3 years now, and the navy's pt program is a friggin joke. granted, it's better than doing absolutely nothing and believe me, we have a lot of sailors who would rather do that, but it won't get you in any type of shape. 40 percent of the sailors i know are horribly out of shape anyways, and should never pass a pt test, but the people running the program find ways to give them passes anyways.

i love crossfit and in the past 2 months i've gotten in better shape than the past 2 years of mindless weightlifting and prodding along on the treadmill have ever got me. i'll be competeing in an upcoming boxing tournament in germany which i would've never been in good enough shape for before i found crossfit. thanks to everyone for making this possible.

Comment #261 - Posted by: jerry at July 11, 2008 2:00 AM

Driving home yesterday in Sunnyvale, I saw about a dozen people in a park doing some sort of kettleball workout. I did a complete double-take, because it sure looked like Crossfit to me. This stuff is catching on like crazy. The skeptics can't stop us.

Comment #262 - Posted by: BJP at July 11, 2008 2:08 AM

This Captain has what more than a couple senior officers in the military have -- FOC (Fear of Change). When things change, what they know becomes more irrelevant, and thus give them less authority. The good ones remain open-minded and embrace change. This guy is like the Army Colonels who drug their feet to start a campaign of counter-insurgency in Iraq before Petraeas forced them to. You just have to tune them out and continue mission.

Comment #263 - Posted by: Matt at July 11, 2008 2:09 AM


Anyone can express a concern and say anything they want with a foundation of canned knowledge that has been poured into their skull at the price of a hefty college degree. I am not knocking higher education - unless you close your mind and padlock it when you get handed your diploma.

Anyone, with any level of education, can prove the effectiveness of CrossFit for themselves. I have no idea how many times I have yelled "lumber curve" at the people I have trained - ranging from a 14 years old dancer to a 60 year old grandpa. Safety is an issue. When, in the endeavor to expand capacity, is it *ever* not an issue.

Sure, I drank the cool-aid and got certified, but only after seeing the evidence in my own body.

Comment #264 - Posted by: Ray K at July 11, 2008 3:02 AM

This sounds to me like another bureaucratic, pencil pushing military officer. They come in all different shapes and sizes, from every branch of service. They are fearful (as mentioned above) of change and of the thought that they are not in control of something that is happening around them. Sadly this is becoming the status quo throughout most of our armed forces, more so in the Navy. Its all about cutting the red tape nowadays.
I am fortunate to have spent my time in the navy in the special operations community, working with some of the most amazing, open minded and outstanding leaders that we have to offer, but even the Special Warfare community is not without its black holes.

Crossfit is becoming a staple among special operations personnel, redefining what, "PT", really is. Two years ago when I first started doing crossfit it was hard to find a suitable gym to complete a full work out, you know, with the Nautilus machines and all. This was also a time when my response to, "What workout are you doing?" was followed with a, "Whats that?!". Today telling someone that your doing Crossfit is acknowledged by a, "oh, yeah, thats a kick in the nuts." Gyms with rings, boxes, bumper plates, kettle bells, ropes, etc. are becoming more common place throughout our bases. Its truly amazing, not some "fitness craze" COTs program that is against Navy CORE Values!

Sailors, Soldiers, Marines and Airmen are fat because they want to be fat, and frankly I think that our higher leadership has let them down with substandard, policy laden fitness regimens and standards. Granted some services (Army, Marines) are tougher with their fitness standards, but I have been through PTs with them as well and compared to the results provided through a correctly performed Crossfit WOD are shoddy to say the least.

Bottom line, these guys will always exist in the military, but until they start interfering with my WODs, I could care less about their thoughts on Crossfit. I will help where I can


Comment #265 - Posted by: chris a at July 11, 2008 3:04 AM

I'm in the Army so I'm not really up on the "Navy Core Values", but what the hell do they have to do with naming workouts after women? Does that somehow conflict with honor, duty, respect, selfless service.....oh wait those are some of the Army's values. Can't really see how they would be gender specific....

Comment #266 - Posted by: The Iceman at July 11, 2008 3:05 AM

You know, I am in the Navy, and I think it goes without saying that anybody in the Armed forces would be ashamed of being associated with the person behind this statement, whoever that may be. Disappointingly, this is an Officer, a Leader, and a Captain at that who is suppose to be setting an example and leading from the front. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, I will give him that. However, the decision to voice that opinion without any obvious forethought, on an official headquarters website makes you wonder about his state of mind on more important matters such as, oh, I don't know... WAR? Not to mention it is offensive to the people (Crossfitters :) ) who do belief in and live by it. It is like invading someone’s home and not having any acknowledgment of the wrong in it. Disappointing… Very disappointing and unnecessarily rude.

Comment #267 - Posted by: Cory at July 11, 2008 3:19 AM

sorry, Captain. i guess u just dont get it. i was excited when i read the navy times article. as a new E-5 in the navy, i was excited to hear that CrossFit has really started to catch on publicly since i went to the level 1 cert at Headquarters in January. Ive been planning to get my Cert added to my military record in case we could begin incorporating CrossFit workouts in our command PT sessions. This "official" response from the CO of CPPD doesnt surprise me at all, however. it fits right in line with the way our higher chains off command are so far out of touch. "People Fear What They Don't Understand" ... or what they choose not to understand.
-FC2 (TW) Scott

Comment #268 - Posted by: natesc0tt at July 11, 2008 3:21 AM

I'm planning on reading through all these, and doing a bit of research so I can formally and officially refute the Captain.

I am an active duty Navy doctor taking care of special operations warriors. I also was a special operator for over 6 years before medical school. I began CF in the summer of 2006. Here are some of my personal and professional experiences.

1. The majority of my operators and support personnel use CF or CF-style functional fitness. It's not our religion, so we often use the basic principles and modify routines to suit or job and the equipment available. The CF guys are in superb shape. Almost all of them have experienced quantifiable improvements since starting CF, improvements that translate into improved job-performance, i.e. killing bad guys and coming home alive.

2. The rates of injuries, not including blisters, are noticeably less among the CF crew. I have also seen men with chronic injuries recover new levels of activity with CF. As an example, I have one officer with a history of a herniated disk, who, with an appropriately tailored CF regimen, is now able to squat 1.5 times his body weight without pain or symptoms. Functional exercises developing core muscle strength, balance, coordination, proprioception, etc. IMPROVE functional ability, go figure.

3. Show me the data on increased injuries, and especially rhabdo among CF or Parkour style functional fitness athletes. I've not seen it in the sports medicine or primary care literature. In fact the research is showing the opposite: functional fitness work reduces sports and work injuries.

4. The women. I though about this a bit, because I used to have a generally low opinion of women when it came to fitness, especially being in military spec ops. That has hugely changed after CF. After you've seen some of these women perform, or you've had your butt kicked by Angie, or Fran, or Cindy (oh, Cindy!), you will have a new found respect for women. Seriously, this is not vulgar or sexual or laced with any innuendo. My respect for women is genuinely increased.

5. Personal. Here are some of the things that CF has done for me. I had to by a new Dress Blue coat because my lats and shoulders somehow got bigger. I was helping a friend build shelves and grabbed nine 2x4s and carried them into his house. He stopped, looked at me and said, “You’re pretty strong.” My wife hugs me and says, “I like the way you feel.” (There was definitely sexual innuendo there). I graduated Navy dive school (again) at 36 years old. I can deadlift 2.4 times my bodyweight and squat 2.3 times my body weight. I can drag 200 pounds or throw it on my shoulder and run with it. You know what that means? I can carry one of my wounded guys out of the kill zone. Thanks CrossFit.

Any military docs or medical types, please email me if you’d be interested in joining me in a written response to the Captain.


Comment #269 - Posted by: RecOnifer in Iraq at July 11, 2008 3:23 AM

I would echo the comments, minus the disparaging remarks. Ignorance is not a crime.

I would say that the army is in the process of rewriting the PT manual. The guys doing it are focusing on functional, combat movements. It should be published soon, and will completely change the way the Army PT's, with the focus on combat functionality. I read an article in the stars and stripes about it, don't have it in front of me, but here's the gist of it.

The army PT program was based on medical knowledge that overall good health comes from good aerobic fitness, and longer running is a good way to acheive that. However, as has been noted, it doesn't matter if you can run 2 miles fast if you can't sprint 50 meters to get behind a concrete wall to avoid fire. Or if you can't fight someone hand to hand and win. The new PT manual includes sprints, lifting, combat rolls, etc, and is 4 times as long as the old one. I don't think it quotes crossfit, but the methods and overall goal seems similar.

Keep your eyes peeled.

I'm in Mosul, Iraq, right now, in better shape than I ever have been-thanks Xfit!

Comment #270 - Posted by: Kevin at July 11, 2008 3:23 AM

I hate the rest days especially when the CF community shows their behind. Can't we have a mature discussion here without all the name calling (#64)?

Comment #271 - Posted by: Christin Street at July 11, 2008 3:31 AM

Core values? Does anyone remember Tailhook? Based on his rank, and therefore time in service, I know he does.

Comment #272 - Posted by: Rob at July 11, 2008 3:36 AM

Question on Pose Running:

I tried it for the first time yesterday and my calves seem really sore compared to the rest of my legs. Is there something I'm doing wrong? Diagnose me crossfit!

Comment #273 - Posted by: George 20/m/190/1 month in at July 11, 2008 3:39 AM

The Navy personnel who read CPT. Picker's comment should be worried of the fact that he is the commanding officer of the Center for Personal and Professional Development. He obviously does not care about the standard of fitness for the Navy or for the rest of the military for that matter. We all know that issue of safety and injury comes from not performing/practicing CrossFit methodology. CrossFit is the safest thing out there for "mass" production fitness programs. We all know that when said and done a person who CrossFits consistantly is going to be better off than not. Especially in the combat role. Standard military fitness programs of the past have been completely in opposition to the individual. If what the Navy has been doing in the past is so good then why is there an obesity problem (if you are in Navy and are offended by this comment don't worry the other services with the exception of maybe the marines have the same problem)? It is bothersome. Someone should look into what the next Navy MilFit program is going to be and see if this dude is involved in any way. Next see if he has a personal interest monetarily. Sorry when you are an officer you will be scrutinized.

Thanks for nothing CPT. Picken.

Oh yeah, Chris A., true this is a guerilla movement and all naysayers should be undermined at every corner and without them knowing it. That is the trick.

Comment #274 - Posted by: Jason D at July 11, 2008 3:39 AM

Awesome vid. The only thing I didn't like was that the widescreen stretch made everyone look strangely short, squat & wider than they should.

Re: Captain Picker - Wow, what a stunningly uninformed statement.

He's wrong. Wrong like a football bat.

The comment about women's names is curious. He might have had a point regarding values (Army values at any rate) if he had alluded to the occasional highly controversial video content (obscene lyrics, etc). Every now & then one of those is worthy of an EO complaint. To me, that's the only incompatability b/w CF & the military.

Comment #275 - Posted by: InfidelSix at July 11, 2008 3:59 AM

Crossfit isn't for everyone, and with the recruits coming into todays military with all the political correctness, the military as a whole will always stay away from an extremely tough workout as a whole. As for the Navy guy questioning the core values about the workouts being named after girls - well, my guess (judging by the Village People) is that they would rather have them named after guys, since that's more their type.

Comment #276 - Posted by: Brad at July 11, 2008 4:03 AM

Bureaucrats...how much can he bench?

Comment #277 - Posted by: Blue at July 11, 2008 4:08 AM

Perhaps it is best to disagree with a man's argument by deconstructing his argument, not trying to deconstruct him. Ad hominem attacks never elevate a discussion.

For a different take on how to encourage change on a micro-level in regards to CrossFit, go over and read today's Affiliate Blog posting about "The Land Before CrossFit" -- and let us know what you think.

Comment #278 - Posted by: Lisbeth at July 11, 2008 4:11 AM

As a Naval Command Fitness Leader (CFL) I was very disappointed in this comment, but it is consistent with what they've always said and it doesn't surprise me. In my formal training I was given some documentation that refuted the claims of just about every supplement out there except for protein. I'm not a supplement junkie, but there is plenty of support for some supplementation along with a good diet. I just write their guidance off when it comes to stuff like this, because they aren't truly interested in developing truly fit athletes; they're only interested in getting people to pass the PT test... so therefore run, do a lot of push ups, and do a lot of situps; you don't need strength training.

Comment #279 - Posted by: TC at July 11, 2008 4:12 AM

To piggy-back off of the comments about organized military PT:

As a member of the USAF, I have been quite disgruntled with the PT programs - whether it's riding a damn bike for 15 minutes, running 1.5 miles, sit-ups, etc...

It's all crap! That's the reason I became a Physical Training Leader (PTL) for my unit...we strictly do CrossFit and the results have been nothing short of amazing. Of course the attrition rate is realtively high (non-CrossFitters). They choose to attend the "other" PT session...run, push-ups, sit-ups...run, push-ups, sit-ups...you get the idea.

I've been quite busy with starting up CrossFit Ramstein over here in Germany, but just let me tell you how much it's caught people's interest. I'd love nothing more than to have the Air Force implement the CrossFit method into their PT program. People wanna say, "...well, I don't need that kind of training for the job I do." I say - bullcrap! No matter what service you're in or where you're located, the possiblity of having to survive under austere conditions is a very real thing.

Who would you want next to you when the sh!# hits the fan...a CrossFitter or a narrow-minded idiot who doesn't know a damn thing about functional fitness? I think we all know the answer...


Comment #280 - Posted by: Brian--CrossFit Ramstein at July 11, 2008 4:15 AM


Haha! I definitely agree. Smokin!

Comment #281 - Posted by: jbutt at July 11, 2008 4:17 AM

Here is an interesting link on rhabdomyolysis:


The net is that rhabdo is not that uncommon. According to their study, about 40% of new military recruits have some degree of rhabdo six days in, and that rhabdo continues to be a problem even for elite runners and ice skaters. None of them appear to die. None of his 35 did. None of them even suffered renal failure.

With respect to an increased risk of musculoskeletal injury, yes, if you are doing something new that you haven't done before, a potential risk is present. However that risk can be quantified, and compared to the risk of being unfit for virtually everything but very simple, easy physical tasks. Moving a couch presents an increased risk of musculoskeltal injury, as does an unexpected sprint to the street to keep your kid from walking into traffic.

The Navy already apparently countenances the risk of rhabdo, during the phase of training in which civilians are supposed to be turned in warriors, at least theoretically. What would be wrong with continuing that intensity? No Crossfitters have died of rhabdo. What's going to kill people is being fat and overweight. If he were to quantify the number of people dying of heart disease in the Navy, our program would look very safe.

Finally, I would be curious what his safer version would look like. I doubt he can back that up.

Comment #282 - Posted by: Barry Cooper at July 11, 2008 4:18 AM

Interesting remarks from the Captain.

First, is Crossfit for everyone? Well, yes and no.......in my opinion, it takes a certain kind of drive, self-discipline, mental strength, and desire to WORK HARD. It takes commitment. If the participant has these characteristics, then yes.

Second, anyone doing CF needs to have enough sense and awareness to modify when/where necessary and to listen to his/her body. If it's too much, back off, too heavy, lighten up, too long, shorten, etc...

you have to use common sense--injuries of some sort will happen eventually, but there are ways to prevent them.

Third, giving a workout a "name", whatever you may call it, identifies it and helps one to remember. Silly to think using a woman's name is offensive or inappropriate.

Lastly, I have been in the fitness business for many, many years as a spinning instructor, group exercise instructor, done numerous triathlons, races (runs), etc, etc etc

The results I have seen from CF over the past few months has been amazing. I am stronger, my body has transformed, my anaerobic threshold has increased, I can do things now I would have never thought I could do, and I have achieved so many PR's it isn't even funny.

Unless you work one on one with a trainer, or take CF and specifically apply it to your individual fitness level, no program is tailored to one person. We are all different, therefore, must tailor our workouts accordingly.

If you see positive results, then it must work.

Comment #283 - Posted by: keithinator at July 11, 2008 4:22 AM

Being Army 11 series, I normally wouldn't miss an opportunity to talk trash about other services; but in this case, I think that we are equally guilty. In my old company there were a number of Soldiers who couldn't pass the pt test, but being favorite sons of the commander and 1SG, who also couldn't pass, they were sheltered. The military is creating a culture of mediocrity and it breaks my heart.

Also, I did the full Angie for the first time yesterday. Took damn near 40 mins, ripped off a callus, and left my hand bleeding. Once the room stopped spinning I was pretty darn proud.

Comment #284 - Posted by: John W at July 11, 2008 4:26 AM

Hilarious. So, CF is dangerous and mysoginistic?

Clearly this gentleman is confused...warfighting is by its very nature dangerous (I don't remember the last time I saw someone suffer a gunshot wound or have a leg blown off doing Fran) and my experience with the typical military unit/person leads me to believe that while for the most part they are extraordinarily respectful and caring...they're a lot more "salty" than simply naming a workout after a woman.

If we proceed according to Captain Picker's thinking, we'll soon disband the military due to danger and political incorrectness.

(How many people died or were seriously injured in non-CF military training last year Captain Picker? How many died or were seriously injured doing CF? Yeah...that's what I thought.)

Comment #285 - Posted by: Matt G. at July 11, 2008 4:37 AM


Chest to bar for 70% of pu's

Comment #286 - Posted by: joecam at July 11, 2008 4:38 AM

haha. #23 classic.

I'm curious as to how many people have been harmed as result of rhabdomyoloysis during a crossfit WOD. My guess is very few. Marathon runners, and efforts sustained for hours upon hours are much more likely to introduce a condition like rhabdomyoloysis to the body. Short bursts of high work output have a remote chance of causing such a condition.

It's clear the navy just doesn't want to be the responsible party when some sailor trys 5 WODS in a day and keels over. I feel like crossfit is pretty straight foward about their stance on overtraining. Thats why there is one WOD not several per day. If you're doing the WOD properly you should KNOW your're done at the end.

Comment #287 - Posted by: Micah T at July 11, 2008 4:40 AM

Some of the comments from active-duty service members here are great. Comments like LT DJO's are far more likely to persuade than the "what a ----" stuff.

Comment #288 - Posted by: John Frazer M/42/185# at July 11, 2008 4:43 AM

#29 Soccerman

I am a chiropractor and a crossfitter. The moves that crossfit employs are absolutely safe when performed as instructed, and are much more effective than isolation exercises. Beginners should obviously scale their workouts as appropriate until comfortable with their form.

Ask your chiropractor to check out the crossfit site and to get involved himself. Sounds like he's giving you advice based on acquired information rather than personal experience. I have gotten so many of my patients involved in crossfit and they are much healthier for it.

Nice to see so many other chiros crossfitting!

Comment #289 - Posted by: fivehole at July 11, 2008 4:46 AM



Comment #290 - Posted by: BIGSEXY at July 11, 2008 4:48 AM

#29 Soccerman

I am a chiropractor and a crossfitter. The moves that crossfit employs are absolutely safe when performed as instructed, and are much more effective than isolation exercises. Beginners should obviously scale their workouts as appropriate until comfortable with their form.

Ask your chiropractor to check out the crossfit site and to get involved himself. Sounds like he's giving you advice based on acquired information rather than personal experience. I have gotten so many of my patients involved in crossfit and they are much healthier for it.

Nice to see so many other chiros crossfitting!

Comment #291 - Posted by: fivehole at July 11, 2008 4:50 AM

Cross Fit inspires excellence. It has proven itself repeatedly. Anyone could read the postings and see that for themselves that people improve their fitness exponentially under this program.

Enthusiasm is unruly and unpredictable. It's fun to work out so intensely. It brings a myriad of benefits. Cross Fit is a beautiful model, it inspires us, pushes us (ANYONE who wants it) to achieve a true physicality that deeply changes the body.

Anything great has its shadow side; here, it is the risk of injury. People must educate themselves. There is no shortage of information on Cross Fit which will go a long way to minimize the risk.

But the risk cannot be eliminated, because there is an intangible factor that rests with each individual: judgment. Each must judge for him or herself when it is appropriate to discipline to do more, or pull back and do less to avoid injury. This is a special kind of judgment that is not well developed in many of us. But it should, must be developed. It is a life skill, and being overly protected from the consequences of life serves no one well.

While Capt. Picker is surely well-intentioned, his comments are like a wet blanket on those who might try Cross Fit but are undecided. They feed the myth that life can and should be made 100% safe. So many of those who use Cross Fit are in the service. As such, they are giving their achievements to the service of their country -their brothers in arms. Read the postings: see what's happening!

I hope Capt. Picker will reconsider his negative position. While safety is always a consideration, I hope he will come to understand that the balance of benefits sharply tips in favor of the Cross Fit approach.

Comment #292 - Posted by: Kira at July 11, 2008 4:52 AM

OOOOH, I cant work out today...my rhabdo is killing me.....

Comment #293 - Posted by: BIGSEXY at July 11, 2008 4:55 AM

With all due respect to the Captain, I respectfully disagree. IED's have been proven to cause musculoskeletal injuries, and bullets likewise; and yet it is the policy of the Navy to subject its sailors to facing such perils while engaging the enemy. Why? Because it is an effective means of victory. Crossfit may cause musculoskeletal injuries, but it is an effective method of develouping broad, general fitness. Doesn't the Navy have a football team? Make the equipment available to our sailors, and frogmen. Let them make the decision as to whether or not they want to participate. Hopefully, this position is not adopted naval policy.

Comment #294 - Posted by: Shawn M at July 11, 2008 4:56 AM

Rest day and controversy. A main staple. One thing I learned in my 20 years of service (5 active/15 reserve) was to always go back and read the order before making knee-jerk reactions or statements. So, based upon Capt Picker's statements, I went to his command's website and checked out the links to the NAVADMINS and OPNAVINST (although I'm a retired Marine Officer, I'm fairly well versed in the acronym vernacular, but for those who aren't - NAVADMIN is a Navy administrative message that goes out to all units and personnel providing information pertinent to all; an OPNAVINST is an instruction/order published under direction of the Chief of Naval Operations) Anyway, I've digressed.

I read OPNAVINST 6110.1H (CLICK HERE: http://doni.daps.dla.mil/Directives/06000%20Medical%20and%20Dental%20Services/06-100%20General%20Physical%20Fitness/6110.1H.pdf )
and it provides the framework for the Navy's PT program. I recommend going right to pg 33 of the 167 page pdf file and read about the Fitness Enhancement Program. Sounds like a good program, but its focus is always on safety first and fitness second. (Think ORM here!)

Now, having read this, I don't see any contradiction between CrossFit and the OPNAVINST. Does anyone else?

I'm sure the Capt was well intentioned. My opinion is that he certainly doesn't deserve the bad rap he's taken today. I'm not defending him, but just making a rather obvious statement that I'm sure all will agree with once the smoke clears and the dust settles. For the good Captain and others who think/believe that CrossFit is dangerous, proper education and an open mind (and perhaps some independent research) would validate CrossFit and go a long way towards pushing the Navy in the right direction. One thing that was clearly evident in the OPNAVINST was it's adherence to the old-school philosophy of fitness (heart rate as a measure of intensity, among other things). Another thing that everyone needs to remember is that the Navy has invested a lot of time and money into their health and fitness centers, machines, command fitness training program, etc. It's hard to let that all go to waste when there's a realization that there's a better way toward elite fitness.

We would do our community well to provide proper feedback and information to the uninformed rather than post ad hominem attacks. Take the high road folks! We're better than that.

Semper Fi!

Comment #295 - Posted by: Steve - CF Ocean City at July 11, 2008 5:01 AM

My email to Capt.:


I'm not going to ram anything down your throat, but I would encourage you to do some more reading on the subject of CrossFit before you attempt to cut the program's credibility without fully educating yourself on the subject. Furthermore, what's your Fran time?

Comment #296 - Posted by: Jim G-ville at July 11, 2008 5:03 AM

The capt is a yes man. You guys got to remember that the military is slow to change. Look at the uniforms for one. I am Navy, loved it hate it.

You have seals and special ops doing cross fit, but in the main core you have ''ricky boot''doing 8count manuals''(burpies).

The Navy will be slow to change as always, sooner or later it will realize that it is a good thing and instute it or make it's ''own''vareation and take the credit.

slow...slow...slow to change.

Comment #297 - Posted by: Nik M/41/165lbs/5f7in at July 11, 2008 5:03 AM

"In the Navy" by the village people is probably against the Navy's core values too... but there it is.

Comment #298 - Posted by: ymca at July 11, 2008 5:06 AM

Captain Picker, why you gotta be a hater?

Comment #299 - Posted by: melodia at July 11, 2008 5:08 AM

During my time in the Teams I new nothing of CF but wish I did. I was introduced to CF three years ago but have only been doing CF for a year and half. I have had three shoulder surgeries (two on the RT and one on the LF) and my RT shoulder sports a complete AC separation that the Docs said not to surgically correct at my age (47). When I started CF I could barely do five pull up and struggled to do 10 dips. Today I can do over 20 pull ups and 30 dips. At my age I am getting stronger and I feel better and I haven’t been injured since I started. I guess what I am saying is; CF WORKS!!

The author’s stance is not surprising and is the reason I was so happy when I was accepted to attend BUD/S. The Navy doesn’t have comprehensive physical fitness program that works or challenges it sailors. They continue to lower those standards for their PT tests instead of instituting something that will make their personnel stronger and healthier.

I hope some day I can attend a certification and will continue to reading the daily comments, post my workout results and browse the forum for items of interest and instruction. This community is outstanding and is a part of my lifestyle.

Thank you, Mark

Comment #300 - Posted by: Mark at July 11, 2008 5:09 AM

It's very unfortunate that the good Capt is demonstrating his ignorance as to the Crossfit Program, how it is to be approached and implemented. Any exercise program has the "potential" for injury if the exercise is executed poorly or loads are used that are beyond what the individual should be attempting at a given point in time. Maybe his command, CPPD, does not "support" Crossfit, but as a Naval Special Warfare, SEAL, Officer(R), I find it very amusing that the most highly physically trained and capable personnel in the Navy, and perhaps the U.S. Military, have Crossfit Gym's at all of their Teams. Maybe the good Capt will re-evaluate his position once he has some accurate information.

Comment #301 - Posted by: Rick GdP at July 11, 2008 5:12 AM

hahahahahaaaaaaaaaa, I guess if I don't wanna get hurt I'll just stay in bed for the rest o' my life.

I'm gonna try "in8girls" WOD. (re #45) sounds fun. thanks!!

Comment #302 - Posted by: MDMelissa at July 11, 2008 5:21 AM

it's the kinder more gentle Navy!!

Comment #303 - Posted by: Chris Bradley at July 11, 2008 5:21 AM

as far as the "girls" named work outs...i always thought that sailors would give their ships girls names...or maybe that was pilots and planes ..i forget..regardless it is obvious he has not really done his homework...if something truly works, you cannot stop it

Comment #304 - Posted by: Dave at July 11, 2008 5:23 AM

The Captain's comments are so disappointing. I'm an Officer in the Navy and am becoming disgusted with the bellies I see hanging over belts every day.

As others have said, the Navy is very slow to change. Perhaps when I move up another rank or two I can help bring that change around.

Comment #305 - Posted by: Clark Petri at July 11, 2008 5:26 AM

I'm glad I was in the Corps.

Semper Fi

Comment #306 - Posted by: Todd at July 11, 2008 5:29 AM

This Captain is correct in his political comments for his Navy. This is NOT a military endorsed program. Sure, Marines, Soldiers, Airmen and Sailors do it because it has potential to save their lives and it is fun. The training is on their own though. The reality has been said here, is that this is an intense program that is designed so that ANYONE young and old can do it "scaling" the exercises. This will only improve anyone physically that uses it. I only wish I had it when I was on active duty! Look at it this way, The Captain was speaking for the Navy, he just officially RECOGNIZED the program! CrossFit will be around forever!

Comment #307 - Posted by: cheese at July 11, 2008 5:33 AM

I have been in the army for the past 14 years, it seems the forces all over the world still havent quite weeded out "old world thinking". Our gym has spent money to ensure our members have the opportunity as well all of the equipment needed in order to carry out this training.They realize that soldiers need to be more well rounded and that there is less long term injury with this type of training ie pounding your knees and back by running everyday for 20 years versus making your back and knees stronger so you can run comfortably when required to do so.It goes without saying that the gym on our base is run by civilians(go figure).As far as women's names , the women I see doing crossfit are ten times harder "individuals" and "athletes" than this guy.

Comment #308 - Posted by: sean at July 11, 2008 5:34 AM

Wow! I'm a retired Army NCO and I'm sure I speak for most of the services "WAR FIGHTERS" when I say, "Crossfit works". We actually have service crossfit gyms and websites. The services are doing crossfit as well as firemen and police officers and the results are amazing. If the good Captain would study a bit of the Crossfit Philosophy he would see that it is tailored to what each individual. Like Soldiers, Marines, Airmen and Sailors everywhere, "You do your best"! Maybe searching the NAVY SEALS crossfit training can convince him?

Comment #309 - Posted by: Dennis Pruitt at July 11, 2008 5:35 AM

Where did you all find the July issue? It isn't posted yet?

Disclaimer: You may not be able to access the site from non .mil IPs


Comment #310 - Posted by: lar at July 11, 2008 5:35 AM

It's because of officers like that (and I was an officer myself) that I left the Army. He'll probably end up being an admiral. By the way, WTF is The Center For Personal and Professional Development? Is that a euphemism for center for yes-man studies?

Comment #311 - Posted by: woody at July 11, 2008 5:36 AM

#64, Spider Chick... you are awesome. That was the best thing I've read all week. You're my new hero.

Comment #312 - Posted by: Adam K, M/36/6'4"/222 at July 11, 2008 5:36 AM

That statement is laughable and embarrassing. I've been in the Navy long enough to recognize the hypocrisy in the Captain's comments. His obvious lack of insight and research is reprehensible. What's more is that he is implying that the Navy is currently implementing a fitness program that excels where CrossFit allegedly falls short. Ha!

As a member of the Hospital Corps community, it's my responsibility to keep myself as fit as possible in order to perform my duties for the Marines I serve with. CrossFit is my method for doing so, as well as many others in the Corpsman community. Who cares what that pencil pusher has to say about your program, coach. This ground pounder says the results speak for themselves!

Comment #313 - Posted by: Jimmy_C at July 11, 2008 5:40 AM

Could someone find the Cpt and conduct some wall to wall "counseling." He needs to elevate his feet and get some blood to his gray matter.


Comment #314 - Posted by: Dave at July 11, 2008 5:41 AM

yea, as far as the girls named workouts, that is just an attack on crossfix, what bering does it have in the name of fitness, he just used that as a way to try to belittle crossfit.

Comment #315 - Posted by: Nik M/41/165lbs/5f7in at July 11, 2008 5:43 AM

Oh, was I supposed to be offended by girls' names on the workouts? I didn't realize that. I'll have to work on getting offended over nothing.

Comment #316 - Posted by: heyref at July 11, 2008 5:45 AM

soccerman - sounds like it's time for a new chiropractor!

Comment #317 - Posted by: john heins 24/m/FL/5'11"/180 at July 11, 2008 5:46 AM

Wait, giving workouts girls' names is against Navy values? Even though they have exercises called "hello darlings," that are nothing more than ab scissors and naval vessels and aircraft are still referred to as she? Wow, I can almost smell the hypocrisy from here. Maybe this officer should have made sure that his publication first made sense internally before generalizing it to the values of the navy. Ordinarily I would be a little more deferential to an officer, but I am out now so I can whatever I want. Pencil pushers like this guy are the reason that those who know how to fight get left behind for promotion and end up being forced out. A nice flowery statement may advance their career but it hurts everyone in the long run. Okay, I am rambling now so I will just shut up.

Comment #318 - Posted by: Jonathan at July 11, 2008 5:47 AM

I am a grandfather of three who up to a year ago was smoking 1-2 packs a day. I started going to the gym about 18 months ago (while still smoking - DUMB*SS)and was introduced to CrossFit 8 months ago. I AM IN THE BEST DAMN SHAPE OF MY LIFE AND CONTINUOUSLY IMPROVING EVERY DAY! Family cannot believe the transformation and I have people come up to me all the time to ask what I'm doing differently. Not only was there a physical transformation, but also psychologically I am more confident and proud of myself. BLESS CrossFit and pity to the ignorant. Thanks Coach.

Comment #319 - Posted by: G_PA at July 11, 2008 5:48 AM

Man, I'm late to the party. Two years of Crossfitting and NOW I find out it's dangerous and just a fad.

Comment #320 - Posted by: David Sailor at July 11, 2008 6:05 AM

Wasn't there a time when challenges to CrossFit were met with patient, confident, and rational argument?

Now most of the responses are juvenile, boastful, group-think insults and meaningless "challenges" to Captain Picker?

Comment #321 - Posted by: Milan at July 11, 2008 6:06 AM

I believe in Crossfit for myself, but there are a lot of injuries associated with any extreme fitness program and culture. The Navy has to worry about keeping enough bodies fit enough for duty to keep the machinery running. Remember that the vast majority of service men and women are not special forces, just folks doing a job. Don't attack the captain for doing his job.

Comment #322 - Posted by: Art at July 11, 2008 6:07 AM

what fitness program does the Iranian navy use?

Comment #323 - Posted by: Dave at July 11, 2008 6:07 AM

I am the Marine Infantry officer quoted in the Navy Times article about CrossFit. Your public pronouncements are ill-informed and unfortunate. The founder of CrossFit, and a TRUE American Patriot, Coach Glassman, and I, are ready to discuss in person, or on the phone, how everything you publicly stated is just flat wrong! Sir, you have slandered and insulted all military members who embrace CrossFit as a way of life. Please give myself or Coach Glassman a call to discuss. I am expecting a public retraction and appology for your misguided comments.

Semper Fi,
LtCol Dan Wilson

Coach Glassman

Phone numbers sent in email.

Comment #324 - Posted by: LtCol Dan Wilson, USMC at July 11, 2008 6:11 AM

I bet the Captain's Fran time sucks.

Maybe Cpt. Picker deserves his own named workout....

All in favor of "Rest Day" now being "Picker"?

Comment #325 - Posted by: MorganL at July 11, 2008 6:23 AM

Comment #334....Art, I didn't know his job was to insult an entire group of CrossFitters with his sexist remarks.. "Additionally, any program that
names exercises after women is contrary to our Core Values." What core values is that again?


Comment #326 - Posted by: SteveSRT at July 11, 2008 6:24 AM

Just seperated from Active Duty Air Force. After being in the military for 4 years, even I find it hard to believe that this guy just implied intensity when working out is bad...

how can you really come up with a thoughtful response to such an uneducated comment?leadership in the military is just like in the simpsons movie... "I was elected to lead! not to read!"

Comment #327 - Posted by: Dow at July 11, 2008 6:30 AM


Never under estimate the power,fortitude and fidelity of those who serve. Your position shows weakness. Maybe you should seek another means of fitness, Crossfit is for the Committed.

Comment #328 - Posted by: ned at July 11, 2008 6:32 AM

The good captain could take out a patent for absurdity with this:

"...and is not tailored to the individual." I fail to see any relevance - firstly, as far as I can gather, no military PT program is tailored to the individual (correct me if I'm wrong); and, as has already been pointed out, CrossFit offers ample opportunity for scaling on an individual basis.

"...a concern that the program has the potential for causing an increased incidence of musculoskeletal injuries and even muscle
breakdown (rhabdomyoloysis) and therefore is not supported by C.P.P.D." Since the navy already employs basic callisthenics movements and monostructural metabolic conditioning, it stands to reason the potential injuries come mainly from the weightlifting portion of the program, something totally baseless:


And the C.P.P.D.:


If their focus is one people's own development, and so many people in their jurisdiction believe that CrossFit helps their development, should they not support it?

As for "Core Values":


If anyone can explain how he managed to deduce that from the above, please tell me.

And we don't name exercises after women, we name workouts after them.

Another unfortunate example of establishments insisting on working from the ground up with their own ideas until they catch up with their goal, rather than taking something that exists already and applying it to their current model.

Comment #329 - Posted by: Darije at July 11, 2008 6:40 AM

Capt. Picker needs to pull his head out of his ass. I'm in the Navy and most of our sailors are disgustingly out of shape. The current "PT" regimen being enforced at most fleet commands is PATHETIC! And speaking of Core Values, we pretty much plagarized our core values verbatim from the Marine Corps and they love Crossfit! Why don't we take another cue from them and adopt Crossfit's high intensity-functional-constantly changing ways... It couldn't hurt any worse than doing nothing, which by the way is what most sailors are doing right now.

Comment #330 - Posted by: BJ at July 11, 2008 6:41 AM

Maybe we should call rest days Capt. Picker's?

Semper Fi...

Comment #331 - Posted by: Bill at July 11, 2008 6:41 AM

Being a Navy guy, this has been the most fun I've had reading the daily forum. I was saddened at first that the ole Captain would blindly base his reasoning on the extremes that are out of context with the overall program. But having a link to his email and reading everyone bag on him is just hilarious to me. Good times. Love Crossfit and I've done WODs in about five different Navy gyms. You can't stop me!

Love the point someone made about how the Navy refers to ships as females ("her") and comparing that to what this guy said. Hilarious!!!!

Comment #332 - Posted by: ponchoboots at July 11, 2008 6:42 AM

Navy, navy, come on out
We wanna hear your scream and shout
Navy, Navy, dont be blue
Popeye was a sissy too.

Comments like this is what gives the Navy the rep for being fat and out of shape. Their ship PT is a joke. Tai-bow? Come on. This Capt needs to do fran w/ the bar and he'd get worked.

SSgt B.


Comment #333 - Posted by: David at July 11, 2008 6:49 AM

I've been Army for over 5 years now, and for the past 8 months I've been in a joint force environment, so I get to see all four branches (sorry Coast Guard), in action. It is not surprising that such concerns over CF's intensity are coming from a Navy officer. On the whole, their mission doesn't require great cardio nor strength, and in today's military, the growing mentality, not just among the junior enlisted, is: "If I don't regularly need it, why should I have to train it!?" The physical training schedule of the Navy is easily half that of the Army and Marines, and much less than even the Air Force.

As far as core values, well, in the Army we have our core values, creeds, pledges, etc. Because of the intentional ambiguity of these motivational and discipline tools, the interpretation of any of them can easily be hijacked to "prove a point".

Having read the same article in the Army Times, I was disappointed with it's over-simplicity of CF. Nevertheless, I'm still Committed!

Comment #334 - Posted by: Rex at July 11, 2008 6:57 AM

Due to the ridiculous and discreditable manner of the Captin's comments my response to him would have to resemble something William F Buckley once said, "I would like to take you seriously, but to do so would affront your intelligence."

Comment #335 - Posted by: Gurrero at July 11, 2008 6:58 AM

I guess women still are second class in the Navy? I thought it was a cool honor to name a work out after a woman. ( Although we do say what a b*$%^ Angie and Fran are! :-) )

When I used to workout at the commercial box jump, you had to sign a waiver it case you got hurt. ANY workout program you can injure yourself. That's why we SCALE in Crossfit. Maybe he needs to come to a few workouts.

Andy Petranek of Petranek Fitness is a former Marine- if you have not checked out his affiliate go now- www.petranekfitness.com or you can see him in a ton of youtube videos. H

ere in Rochester we have an Army Ranger who works out with and says that this is the best work out he has ever done.

Comment #336 - Posted by: RandyR at July 11, 2008 6:59 AM

re: sending email to Capt. Picker

Was CrossFit out of bounds in publishing Capt. Picker's email address? Are CrossFitters wrong to send him email?

Absolutely not.

And I speak as someone who used to run email activism campaigns for an advocacy organization. Such campaigns can often be effective in getting a decision-maker's attention and beginning a dialogue that leads to change.

But the law of diminishing returns comes into to play. At his point, I would write to the webmaster at Capt. Picker's domain and offer to divert the mail to a new email box on condition that that the webmaster report to Capt. Picker the total number of messages received.

1) By now, Capt. Picker has received all the arguments
2) There is no point in annoying Capt. Picker to the point where he rejects dialogue
3) Remember, the goal is to effect change -- not vent anger

I see Coach and a Marine have offered to begin a dialogue. That's good.

So I'd suggest we keep the pressure on by sending email, while also opening the door to "peace talks."

Comment #337 - Posted by: Daniel Freedman at July 11, 2008 6:59 AM

re: sending email to Capt. Picker

Was CrossFit out of bounds in publishing Capt. Picker's email address? Are CrossFitters wrong to send him email?

Absolutely not.

And I speak as someone who used to run email activism campaigns for an advocacy organization. Such campaigns can often be effective in getting a decision-maker's attention and beginning a dialogue that leads to change.

But the law of diminishing returns comes into to play. At his point, I would write to the webmaster at Capt. Picker's domain and offer to divert the mail to a new email box on condition that that the webmaster report to Capt. Picker the total number of messages received.

1) By now, Capt. Picker has received all the arguments
2) There is no point in annoying Capt. Picker to the point where he rejects dialogue
3) Remember, the goal is to effect change -- not vent anger

I see Coach and a Marine have offered to begin a dialogue. That's good.

So I'd suggest we keep the pressure on by sending email, while also opening the door to "peace talks."

Comment #338 - Posted by: Daniel Freedman at July 11, 2008 6:59 AM

Technique VS Intensity

If I am correct the standing SOP is: increase intensity to the point until technique falls apart, dial it back, fix technique, increase intensity again. Repeat.

However what about WODs where intensity is sacrificed not due to technique focus but lack of power.

Lynne: Max rep BW bench = 1. Should the weight be scaled back or should it be completed with 5 total bench reps?

Some say that the WODs are designed to be METCON, heavy weight, endurance etc. Therefore even if the subject can complete the WOD at RXd weight he should not do so if he is then moving so slowly and taking so much rest that it is more of a heavy weight WOD than a METCON.


Comment #339 - Posted by: Kai 32/M/6'2"/195 at July 11, 2008 7:01 AM

hey just out of curiousity what are the pt requirements for the various military services?

Comment #340 - Posted by: johnfg at July 11, 2008 7:04 AM

While I was never in the miltary I hold all members in high regard. I was concerned anout Capt Jon's comment about core Navy values. This is what I found.

Honor: "I will bear true faith and allegiance ..." Accordingly, we will: Conduct ourselves in the highest ethical manner in all relationships with peers, superiors and subordinates; Be honest and truthful in our dealings with each other, and with those outside the Navy; Be willing to make honest recommendations and accept those of junior personnel; Encourage new ideas and deliver the bad news, even when it is unpopular; Abide by an uncompromising code of integrity, taking responsibility for our actions and keeping our word; Fulfill or exceed our legal and ethical responsibilities in our public and personal lives twenty-four hours a day. Illegal or improper behavior or even the appearance of such behavior will not be tolerated. We are accountable for our professional and personal behavior. We will be mindful of the privilege to serve our fellow Americans.

Courage: "I will support and defend ..." Accordingly, we will have: courage to meet the demands of our profession and the mission when it is hazardous, demanding, or otherwise difficult; Make decisions in the best interest of the navy and the nation, without regard to personal consequences; Meet these challenges while adhering to a higher standard of personal conduct and decency; Be loyal to our nation, ensuring the resources entrusted to us are used in an honest, careful, and efficient way. Courage is the value that gives us the moral and mental strength to do what is right, even in the face of personal or professional adversity.

Commitment: "I will obey the orders ..." Accordingly, we will: Demand respect up and down the chain of command; Care for the safety, professional, personal and spiritual well-being of our people; Show respect toward all people without regard to race, religion, or gender; Treat each individual with human dignity; Be committed to positive change and constant improvement; Exhibit the highest degree of moral character, technical excellence, quality and competence in what we have been trained to do. The day-to-day duty of every Navy man and woman is to work together as a team to improve the quality of our work, our people and ourselves.

I can not find any passage in the above text that would be contrary to the Navy core values. If amy thing his comments are contrary to Navy values (Honor) by citeing women's names as a bad thing. After women are in the Navy.

Comment #341 - Posted by: Matt M at July 11, 2008 7:07 AM

Best video ever!

Comment #342 - Posted by: Mike - CrossFit PEI at July 11, 2008 7:08 AM

Oh my goodness. As if dealing with my small children weren't enough this morning now I get to read from a small minded man. My first reaction is to snatch him up and spank his butt and make him sit in the time-out air chair until I'm no longer steaming. But then I realized that I probably could snatch him and even squat him and had the delicious thought that I, a little suburban house wife, might actually hurt a big bad Navy captain. So I'll just go outside and do the 10k that I skipped yesterday, and while I'm at it, I'll push the kids in the stroller with me. Uphill. And I'll be content in the knowledge that even though I've never had the benefit of a CPPD supported exercise program, I have been doing CrossFit for many months and have had neither any sort of musculature injury nor muscle breakdown. As a matter of fact, my chiropractor has told me that the improved muscle structure around my spine has greatly improved many systems within my body, not to mention my posture.

The whole "girls' named workouts being against the Core" thing...upon further reflection, just doesn't rank a response. I'll need that breath when I'm running.

Comment #343 - Posted by: PennyB at July 11, 2008 7:09 AM

"Additionally, any program that names exercises after women is contrary to our Core Values."

I thought that that was the Jihadi's line of thought.

Comment #344 - Posted by: Bill Ellsworth at July 11, 2008 7:09 AM

what does nameing the workouts after girls have to do with honor courage and commitment? I find his comments to be a bit shameful.

Comment #345 - Posted by: boat_rower at July 11, 2008 7:12 AM

If the Capt. is so worried about injury, perhaps we should stop training our service men and women in weapons systems and combatives. Honestly, how useful to our military could a fitness program be that not only conditions the body for extreme physical stress but also severely tests the mentality of its participants on a regular basis? I mean let's face it, who in the military ever needed the kind of mentality that required them to fight through things, to struggle and overcome? HONESTLY!?

Comment #346 - Posted by: Allen at July 11, 2008 7:20 AM

I have another longer philosophical post held in the filters, hope it makes it through.

Sailors are not unique in being over stuffed by carbs - they may have an excuse in that they get what the ship offers (while underway). Sailors will however meet a challenge when faced with it and they proved that again this AM in a CrossFit style class I offered.

I'll tell you what else I've seen Sailors do. I've seen them stand on the top of a flight deck at sea for 14 hour days with 30 knots of wind in near freezing temps. When it rains up there, they just keep doing what they are doing. Day after day, for weeks. Weekends - nope, not when underway. Those same Sailors, two weeks later when we were in the Arabian Gulf, they stood in the heat and danced in the jet blast and ran around on a hydraulic fluid soaked deck and tried to drink enough to not pass out as the steel deck pounded them and the jets tried to eat them or blast them overboard. If you have not felt jet blast on your lips in the 100 degree plus temps on a flight deck, you may not have a clear idea of what 'hot' is. If you were up there, you wouldn't be wearing underarmour, you'd be wearing long sleeved heavy cotton, and a head gear, and long pants and boots so that when something up there breaks and burns, you could man up a hose and put it out. I saw those Sailors do that, too. Yes, they were the ones 'running the wrong way' putting out the S-3 and the row of F-18s so that we would still be a fighting ship the next day, not an underappointed nuclear powered cruise liner.

Those Sailors may not be aesthetically pleasing and their Navy may not put them through anything as useful as CrossFit, but they stay on their feet and get it done, rain, shine, or fuel fed fire. That's all the more reason to find a way to get them real fitness training, but until then they'll still be doing the heavy lifting.

So lighten the frock up on my (admittedly often plump) shippies, there are very few of you who have room to throw stones. Paul

Comment #347 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 210 44 yoa at July 11, 2008 7:25 AM

Funny how SEALs,Rangers, SF, Air Force PJs and the like all do PT that, if its not Crossfit, looks kinda like it. Never heard of all of the concern for injury at BUDS or SFAS either.????

Comment #348 - Posted by: RussG at July 11, 2008 7:25 AM

When I started CF I could score 290 on the APFT, and the CF workouts did then, and do now, kick my butt. Unless I was trying to out push up or out sit up someone, that fitness wasn't real functional stuff.

And of course if I had to run farther than two miles ... well too bad for me.

I'll take the high intensity training, functionality and variety of crossfit over "lift weights one day, run two miles the next" any day.

Comment #349 - Posted by: Rob in Texas at July 11, 2008 7:27 AM

Re: Capt Picker's Comments:

Spoken like a true bureaucrat from the inner rings of the Pentagon.

As a taxpayer, sir, i would hope that my contriubtion to your military training and education would have produced the ability to come up with a better defense of your arguments than a vague allusion to "some subject matter experts" and a reference to Rhabdo. Who's your source? Truth to tell, I don't really care who your source is.

A year and a half ago I weighed 240 and couldn't run a mile. Now, after 18 months of CrossFit I weigh 200 pounds and run a 5k every sunday.

Your reference to the female-named workouts being contrary to the Navy's core values sounds like pure unadulterated ass-covering. As a former federal employee, I have seen it up close. Nicely done sir. You personify everything that is wrong with the Federal government today. I can only hope that your uninformed comments have little to no deleterious effect on the necessary physical and mental training of all of our fighting forces.

Comment #350 - Posted by: Kevin at July 11, 2008 7:28 AM

I am also a Chiropractor, and a crossfitter through and through. This DC obviously doesn't have a strong enogh grasp on functional movement to know what is right for the fully functional body.


Comment #351 - Posted by: Doc Monster at July 11, 2008 7:28 AM

this is stupid. not every soldier needs to be super physically fit, especially sailors. CF is unwieldly and ill-suited to platoon or even squad sized PT ... how many weight sets do you think a unit has?

ultimately, if someone's a desk jockey, and then can do a decent amount of pushups and situps, and run a decent run ... who cares? why do you care? if they want more extreme PT, they can get it on their own time, or join a high speed unit where it matters. there's the internet, magazines, etc. so if they care, they can do it.

honestly, i don't care if people do or don't do CF. i don't see why anyone else should.

Comment #352 - Posted by: ABN RGR at July 11, 2008 7:30 AM

I could SERIOUSLY rant for PAGES on this guys comments but all I say is that:

While naming workouts after women is against his core values, EXECUTING workouts named after women help me value my core.

Kai- here is the deal. The key to it all is a log book and the video clips.

After the WOD is posted, watch the instructional clips in FAQ.

Include the functional movements in your warm-up with just a PVC pipe or just the bar to engage your muscle memory (if you have any) on the movement.

The FIRST time you do Elizabeth or Fran or Grace, et al. afterwards write down how you scaled it and how your form was. You will breakdown, you just will - but keep notes along with your time.

The NEXT time - in 4 weeks or whatever - read your notes before the workout. Do it again, write your notes down and compare them.

The fourth or fifth time, you will have a six to seven month perspective on your improvement. Your sense of accomplishment will be enormous. You will be albe to look at not just how your time improves, but how your mechanics (step 1 in Intensity) ROM and time has improved. Once you are at the Rx'd weights/reps for the WOD, you can build consistency, (step 2 in intensity). With these established, not its time to put the High in High Intensity.

To answer your specific question, keep in mind scaleability.

I would use a precentage, say 75% for this time, focus on ROM and form.

Next time, use 80%.

Build each time until you hit 100%. When you get their, your ROM and form are straight.

Here is a good example: Linda.
What I did is used my worst exercise, the clean, and extablished a weight that was difficult enough. So instead of 3/4BW, I used .75*3/4BW. Even though I was stronger at DL and bench, I stuck with the 70%.

The next time, it was about 5 weeks later, I moved it all up by 5%. My time was slower, but by form was greatly improved.

The next time (I had lost 12 pounds (actually 24 pounds of fat, and gained 12 pounds of muscle according to the Zone calculator) by this point) I added another 10%, so I was going at Linda with 85% as Rx'd

The next time, it was as Rxd. I had the proper mechanics, and I am consistent with my ROM.

Then its on to puting the intensity into - not that the workout wasnt intense, it just was not the focus.

Then entire time, my DLs and bench I could do as Rx'd. I just was terrible at cleans. It was my form and the mechanics, not my strength that was limiting me.

Hope this helps.


Comment #353 - Posted by: Max at July 11, 2008 7:41 AM

Picking on Pickar: Who are these SME's and what did they say? What's a safer way to create an intense method of developing fitness? Details, please. If he's worried about injuries, better stop everyone from playing basketball, soccer, flag football, etc. As for core values, well, any program that names workouts after fallen heroes is contrary to core values. Whoops, guess I misread that. The ghosts of the brass that opposed the development of aircraft carriers in the 1920's are still hanging around.

Comment #354 - Posted by: john wopat at July 11, 2008 7:48 AM

If the good Capt wants to address Navy core values, then start with (and change) the Navy tradition of calling all Navy ships "she" or "her". Change that then he can move on.

Comment #355 - Posted by: Joe Jarhead at July 11, 2008 7:51 AM

My bet would be that any of the "girls" that finished Rx in the games could put Capt. Picker to shame and make him cry like a baby...fact is: he fears women!

Comment #356 - Posted by: Molly G at July 11, 2008 7:51 AM

I had a long list of what I was going to say, especially being active duty in the navy I did not want to be represented by the comment made by O-6 Picker. Right when I was about to start I read comment #325 and that said about everything I am feeling about picker. MorganL great post. Thank god for "picker" days.

Comment #357 - Posted by: victor at July 11, 2008 7:52 AM

To: mrscott

You took the words right out of my mouth. I couldn't agree with you more. The main Navy (I am prior active and current reservist)offers only generalization and pathetic attempts to teach true fitness. I could go on and on with examples, the contradiction to this is the SOF (Special Ops Forces) community. Those guys have always pushed the envelope on fitness and know that you should never be complacent in your thinking. I could keep going but I'm to frustrated with his comments to type anymore.

Comment #358 - Posted by: Rob - Go Big Red at July 11, 2008 7:54 AM

I love crossfit and it has undoubtedly changed my life for the better; however, to each their own, and if the Captain is not a fan, it is, in my opinion, his loss. To be honest, the power of crossfit is something I only share with a select few, like a stock pick that I know will double, triple, quadruple in value.
My issue is with his statement "any program that names exercises after women is contrary to our Core Values", I suggest the capt watch the video of Kallista Pappas, see the inspirational effort this young woman puts forth, and read the admiration and emotion she evoked in our extended crossfit family. If this is contrary to their "core values", I would ask then what the hell do you value?
If I had a 14 year old child and she demonstrated such dedication, effort and spirit, I would be honoured to have a WOD named after her.
Not everyone is going to have the mettle to crossfit, at times I can barely hang on myself, but this gentleman should not disparage us, and in turn we should understand that the dedication required of our beloved program is not for everyone.

Comment #359 - Posted by: bradw at July 11, 2008 7:55 AM


priceless! wish we had met at the games. didn't know you were there. next time.

Comment #360 - Posted by: ken c at July 11, 2008 7:55 AM

WOW! There's a contrast. A huge pick me up from that awesome video(props to whoever put that together) and a big let down with the Captain's letter. Thank goodness for leaders with heart and courage like LtCol. Dan Wilson and those like him(I sure hope there are a lot more of them) who are taking it on themselves to give their fellow soldiers the best chance at solid, functional fitness for the real world they work and fight in. Thanks Coach for posting this letter. I imagine, like me, a lot of us are so wrapped up in our own excitement about Crossfit that it's hard to imagine anyone coming across this program wouldn't be as enthralled with it as we are. I think it was a Bush the 1st or Reagan era campaign that had a slogan of "Change is Chancy!" This closeminded thought process is so frustrating and makes me angry that our soldiers have to fight against this sort of pigheadedness in order to better themselves.
I've been a day behind for weeks and I'm skipping ahead and taking this rest day to regroup after a couple hard weeks and looking forward to finally being on track with the daily workout.
To the military personell working against Captain Picker's type of mindset on a daily basis: you are my heros, stick with it and please keep yourselves and your buddies safe regardless of the gross negligence and ineptitude trying to hold you back from excellence!

Comment #361 - Posted by: paulyG 38/M/6'/180lbs at July 11, 2008 7:59 AM

I guess the Navy doesn't want to be in top physical condition. As for me and my soldiers we'll continue to do crossfit so we can maintain our ability to carry on the fight. Keep up the good work.

Crossfit is keeping us guys that fight in the streets physically ready.

Comment #362 - Posted by: Joe Tarman at July 11, 2008 8:00 AM

QUOTE - "It's people like Captain Jon Picker that make me ashamed to be in the Navy. It's become a bureaucracy that caters to obesity and laziness and is so politically correct that this waste of a commissioned officer has to throw in a sentence condemning the fact that our workouts have girl's names. Maybe someone should bring to his attention all the SEALs that also have workouts named after them who are probably rolling over in their graves right now. Thank you for linking his e-mail address, hopefully he gets a lot of e-mails about this.

Comment #16 - Posted by: James at July 10, 2008 5:05 PM "

You are absolutely correct. My wife and I left the(Canadian) NAVY last year, neither of us could handle the bull... After gaining 40lbs (nobody's fault but my own, I could have resisted the lifestyle) in my first year, and then being looked at as if I was crazy for wanting to get back into shape, then having to fight for years to keep it while living/working with those people. I realized that the modern Navy is not a place for sailors or soldiers anymore. The "core values" have been replaced with nothing more than bureaucracy, physical standards hardly exist and traditions are eroding. I miss serving everyday, putting on my uniform and feeling like I'm a part of something from generations past, but I don't miss being surrounded by lazy people who want to drag you down with them and make up excuses why we should no longer have to be extremely fit.

Comment #363 - Posted by: Hold Fast Kev at July 11, 2008 8:05 AM

Im in the navy & we do crossfit. It's true, doing the Olifts takes practice and proper form. For a absolute novice with no training and no quality instruction they can hurt themselves. But with practice, and work it's a great program and everyone that dose it agrees at least in part that it is a boon to pure functional strength and endurance.

Comment #364 - Posted by: dave at July 11, 2008 8:08 AM

#353: I'll admit, my job is in the advanced weapons development...I'm a desk jockey, BUT...The reason the desk jockeys should be doing something like this, and should be focusing on being "superfit soldiers" is because of ILO taskings.
Those of us who are desk jockeys are being deployed with In-lieu-of taskings to try and alleviate the stress on the Army. My career field is an Air Force Program Manager, and many of us have been given these ILO taskings.

I don't know how often the Navy is doing it, but the AF is deploying like we've never done before....and really, if I'm going to be deployed with an Army unit, wouldn't they want me to be in the best shape possible.

Comment #365 - Posted by: Matteucs at July 11, 2008 8:09 AM

I am using CrossFit and CrossFit endurance to train for BUD/s!!
I find this VERY disgusting, that he would say such a thing.

If he'd only know what CrossFit does to our Sailors/Marines, maybe he'd take a step back and rethink his comments.

I go to the University of South Carolina and am a MIDN 2/C in the Naval ROTC unit. I have converted MANY people into CrossFit, and this absolutely disgusts me.

I am by no way insinuating insubordiation with my comments, I am blatanly disagreeing with the Captain's opinion.

MIDN 2/C Samuel David
University of South Carolina Naval ROTC
Columbia, SC

Comment #366 - Posted by: Sam at July 11, 2008 8:09 AM

By the way I'm a Navy SeaBee and we don't usually follow the "main stream" Navy way of thinking anyway.

Comment #367 - Posted by: Rob - Go Big Red at July 11, 2008 8:14 AM

#322, Lt Col Dan Wilson: Thank you. I trust you and Coach to take this on and prevail. Your adept mind and ferocious fitness leads the way for our nation's warfighters. All is right with the world when men like you are in front.

And, to those who think they're being patriotic by defeding the Navy 0-6's ignorance with some misguided argument about blanket rank respect for the sake of (fill in with whatever candy you like), stop. You don't know what's at stake here.

The most critical comments regarding Capt Picker's poisonous words are coming from the seasoned warfighters. Till you have walked the middle eastern sand in our desert boots, don't presume to understand the life or death necessity of CrossFit ultimate warrior fitness. Don't open your mouths for another round of blather about rank respect for someone who knows nothing about what it takes to stay alive out there. I can say what I want. I am an officer and I went to war. And, my previous slavish adherence to the official USAF PT program was the worst mistake of my entire military training. Till you have the same street creds that we do, do not presume to criticize those of us who are empassioned about warrior fitness. Just put out a thank you to the warfighters, step back from defending Capt Picker, and let Lt Col Wilson lead the way. And, if you still feel compelled to coddle Capt Picker, go rent and watch "The Americanization of Emily". Learn the meaning of, "The first dead man on Omaha Beach must be a sailor".

Captain Picker's thoughts, if allowed to stand, will rapidly kill our fighting men and women. He must be forced to publicly retract his ignorant, incorrect and infectious comments in the same forum in which he so thoughtlessly published them.

Comment #368 - Posted by: Spider Chick at July 11, 2008 8:16 AM

In the case of Captain (Navy's equivalent of a Colonel) Picker's comments - I'll even have to agree wiht the CF snobs today - this Picker guy is whacked.

I serve in the Nacy Reserve for 5 years, and the fitness program was a total joke. The CF warm up was more difficult than their PT test standards.

Comment #369 - Posted by: SheepDawg007 at July 11, 2008 8:17 AM

That was a frickin' sweet video from the Games, I'd do it again this weekend if I could.

It's 9:30am Calgary time and there are 370 comments on a rest day. Touchy subject, no?

Comment #370 - Posted by: gaucoin at July 11, 2008 8:28 AM

Gaucoin, you were one of the folks I missed but wish I had met last weekend. Perhaps next time. Awesome performance.


Comment #371 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 210 44 yoa at July 11, 2008 8:32 AM

I love that video! See you all next year.

Comment #372 - Posted by: andy swartz at July 11, 2008 8:33 AM

10 rounds
15 deadlifts 135lb
15 pushups

Comment #373 - Posted by: bleedCF at July 11, 2008 8:33 AM

I think pretty much everything's been said here. I'm not in the service or anything, I just like a challenge. I like the idea of being fit enough to competently perform any physical task or sport I come across. I'm 39 now, I wish they had this when I was 20. I probably would never have gotten out of shape to begin with. Because of doing Crossfit, I'm in much better shape than I was back then. The variety of this program as well as the intensity is key. I love being able to say I did all this crap in 20-30 min. each day. It's ubelievable that all this great info is free too. I don't see how anyone could have a problem with this.

Comment #374 - Posted by: Negativghostrdr at July 11, 2008 8:34 AM

This is my email to Capt. Picker:

Greetings Capt. Picker-

I suspect you have received many emails regarding your statements in the July issue of ENCOMPASS. Fortunately or unfortunately I feel compelled to contact you with my thoughts on the subject as well. As a little background I have run a CrossFit facility in Northern California for the past 5 years. We were recently named one of the "Top 30 Gyms in America" in the March '08 edition of Men's Health (http://www.menshealth.com/bestgyms/). I'm a former research biochemist in the area of lipid metabolism and cancer research. I am also a former state champion power lifter.

Our clientele ranges from general fitness enthusiastis to cops, firefighters, soldiers, professional athletes and grand parents. We have 20 year old MMA fighters as well as folks in their 80's training here. A significant portion of our clientele is referred to us from local physical therapists, orthopedists and chiropractors because we have demonstrated the superiority of CrossFit as a post-acute rehabilitation modality. In simple terms, we fix people, we do not break them. Additionally, we create a base of general work capacity that leads to elite fitness. This is clearly demonstrated by an ever growing pool of our athletes who are ranked from regional to national levels.

This is a long winded way of saying we are good at what we do. This is typical of the level of coaching in CrossFit. I mean no disrespect but you miss the mark by a wide margin with your statement that CrossFit is a "Commercial off the self program not tailored to the individual". The program is general, the coaching is individually tailored. Considering your background I think you can appreciate that a system, be it PT or flight training, is only valuable to the degree the instruction/coaching is effective. CrossFit offers expert coaching via affiliates, SME clinics and seminars. This provides instruction which is information dense, yet with inherent QA/QC elements.

Your statement about the potential of musculoskeletal injuries with crossfit and that there is a "better way" is intriguing given that CrossFit has been compared to both advanced periodization schemes AND standard military PT with CrosssFit producing better results with LESS injury. This information is 3rd party generated, easily accessible, yet you did not take the time to do your research on this topic.It is heartbreakingly obvious you have given this system nothing more than a cursory glance and I can not help but wonder exactly what fitness program you do endorse and WHY? If you have a better system we are available for comparisons via 3rd party utilizing university research standards.

I also find it interesting that naming workouts after women "contrary to your core values" yet this is a common practice for ships, aircraft and the like. Capt, are you aware that many of the named workouts are in honor of fallen servicemen? Of course you are not aware of this, you have done no homework on the topic and have absolutely NO idea what you are talking about.

I mean no disrespect with this email but your statement is a classic example of a middle management command structure which is completely insulated from and oblivious to the realities and needs for the people YOU are supposed to serve. Your ignorance on this topic is now a matter of public record and you are left with one of a few options:
1-ignore the yammering of people like me who are obviously biased, unbalanced and not savvy to the needs of the military.
2-Immerse yourself in the program, learn about it from the inside and THEN mak an informed statement about the program, coaching, quality, safety and efficacy.

TO support option 2 I'd like to offer my services to you to answer any questions you might have. You can reach me by phone, email or I can travel to Virginia Beach at any time, for essentially any duration you require to assist in this process. Considering that the fitness of soldiers, sailors and marines has life or death implications I think it behooves you to fully understand both CrossFit and the implications of your statement in ENCOMPASS.


Robb Wolf CSCS, USAW
NorCal Strength & Conditioning Inc.
CrossFit NorCal

Comment #375 - Posted by: Robb Wolf at July 11, 2008 8:36 AM

Ironic that the USN takes the same tepid cowering view of CF as the NY Times. I've never been in better shape in my 50 civilian years of numerous bad habits.

Comment #376 - Posted by: texasmick at July 11, 2008 8:36 AM

All I can say to Jon Picker is he would be only so-lucky if one day Kallista Pappas was in his same Navy! Vote for the Kallista WOD!


Comment #377 - Posted by: SteveSRT at July 11, 2008 8:38 AM

Well, la de da ! Girls names against core values: just what the h*** are Navy core values ?

Comment #378 - Posted by: Peter T at July 11, 2008 8:47 AM

crossfit total
last total done on 6-19

bs 275 285
sp 145 155
dl 345 375

total 765 815

Comment #379 - Posted by: patrick 26/m/6'1'/182 at July 11, 2008 8:48 AM

#64 - interesting but crossfit doesnt make us all gods. Its definitely great, but I think you need to settle down a little.

Comment #380 - Posted by: nate at July 11, 2008 8:49 AM

Any old Soldiers remember the old physical training. (70’s), run dodge and jump, horizontal ladder, inverted crawl, 8 count push up, pull ups, elevated push ups on SGT Rock and other exercises that I don’t recall the names. However, back then we used to run the Airborne shuffle in those cheap a** boots for several miles.

Comment #381 - Posted by: Pete at July 11, 2008 8:49 AM

Think outside the box. It's not a requirement. If you like it, do it, if you don't, then don't worry about it. Injuries happen, we all know, and it can be minimized with a good warm up and stretching. Hmm, I wonder how many people were hurt in the past just using bodybuilding techniques. If you want to use this with your unit, then just make sure your people are warmed up, stretched, and probably shouldn't put them through exercises they probably can't handle if they're not Xfitters. Leadership, leadership, leadership.

Comment #382 - Posted by: SCMAR at July 11, 2008 8:50 AM

Well being a Marine Grunt with over 11 years of nothing but operating forces time. Cross Fit is the perfect workout for services members with little time to run 4-5 miles four days a week and work on pull ups and crunches to improve your PFT.
Been a Cross Fit for 5 months and scores have soared above when i was a young stout LCpl.

Comment #383 - Posted by: SSGT G at July 11, 2008 9:03 AM

What if the workouts had gender-ambiguous names, like "Pat", "Sam", or "Robin"?

Comment #384 - Posted by: MattG at July 11, 2008 9:04 AM

Has the Captain ever examined what the seals do?

Comment #385 - Posted by: Jim Rooks at July 11, 2008 9:04 AM


OK - today's my last day as m/37... tomorrow I'm m/38...

Looking for a 38th b-day WOD similar to a filthy 50/300 type workout, with the obvious theme of 38 reps. I'll do it at home... Here's the equipment I'll have available -

C2 Erg
Ab Mat
Jump rope
Room to run
Various bags of mulch, dirt, and odd, heavy objects

Green range... pls response on the msg board! Thanks!

Comment #386 - Posted by: ScottE at July 11, 2008 9:08 AM

there is a very good reason why the canadian military is spending time and money on A) experimenting with crossfit on a test group (basic infatry officer course), b)spending money to host level 1 certs. and send theyr soldiers on it free of charge c)build crossfit areas in base gyms across the country (or if yur lucky and yur 3vp and can just use the crossfit gym in yur regiment), the reason is crossfit works, definatly the way of the future

anyone else get right pumped watching todays vid, i wish i didnt have a triathlon this weekend i wanna go destroy myself

Comment #387 - Posted by: sprwally at July 11, 2008 9:10 AM

F@#%ing awesome video! I'm just as amused as the rest of you with the Captain's comments. But I would urge you to focus on today's video when you feel the urge to post hate mail. X-Fit is about connecting with your best; your deepest potential and power. You cannot tell me that when you're hating on some guy who hasn't been blessed yet with "getting in", that you feel good about yourself. Come on, tell the truth. It's like kicking someone when they're down. That's NOT Crossfit. We want guys like the Capt to drink the Kool Aid and spread the good word. How are we going to get to him and others like him if we're reacting to him like bullies and haters? Sometimes you gotta coax a kid to take their medicine, not shove it down their throats. Let's take the high ride. Any retard can call someone else a retard. It takes a lot more self confidence and maturity to respond with facts, patience and love. Kindness is the most courageous act there is. Now get out there and run, you F$%^ing Sallies! Luv ya!

Comment #388 - Posted by: Steph at July 11, 2008 9:11 AM

OK... I meant pls respond on the message board - new thread under WODs. Thanks again!

Comment #389 - Posted by: ScottE at July 11, 2008 9:12 AM

This is the first time I have made a comment on this site. So I'm just throwing this out there. We named 135# clean and jerks "Grace" Can we name the Crossfit Games workout of 155# squat clean and jerks "Kallista"? Her performance was very inspiring!

Comment #390 - Posted by: David CF Charlotte at July 11, 2008 9:14 AM

Peter T - To answer your question, Navy core values are "honor, courage, and commitment." All three help me get through each workout.

Just so everyone here knows, not all Navy men and women subscribe to this kind of thinking. I am a prior enlisted Marine and current commissioned Submariner in the Navy with 11 years of service all over the world. Please try not to buy into the politics and start bashing the Navy based on one man's comments. Especially, other service members - I or one of my sailors might be standing next to you in the sand.

There are a lot of fit, athletic, and hard working men and women that deserve better than the language being thrown at them here. The Navy WILL NOT stop me from being a CFer (I have my own garage gym because the base gym is inadequate) and know many others that don't flinch at the Captain's comments - the rest of you shouldn't either.

Comment #391 - Posted by: Tony at July 11, 2008 9:22 AM

#60, #158...


"He (coach) gave them (wods) female names, such as 'Helen,' 'Fran,' and 'Cindy,' because they reminded him of hurricanes."

Comment #392 - Posted by: gactive at July 11, 2008 9:27 AM

so i finally got around to doing the XF Games Waterloo edition and after doing it my god i wish i had been there to experience the heat, humidity, and motivation that competition adds to the situation.
i did it as rx'd (weights, WOD separation and timing, and following the XFG standards) in the following order:
thruster/pullup - 4:56
deadlift/burpee - 4:58
900m uphill run - 4:13 (the run was all uphill on the grass beside the road)
Day1 Time - 14:07

Power squat clean to OH press - 6:22 (i think i was slowed down on this exercise by doing it in a globo gym where i had to control the weight down which wasted a significant amount of energy)
Total Time - 20:29

Comment #393 - Posted by: Flashback at July 11, 2008 9:27 AM

Greatest video ever!!!!

Comment #394 - Posted by: chrisfromedmonton at July 11, 2008 9:31 AM

ANGRY (sorry about spelling or grammar I am trying to be quick so I can get back to work)
I Have been a personal trainer for years I coach track and field and have been "enjoying" (in the sick kind of way all of us who like to work that hard, enjoy kicking our own asses)Cross Fit for awhile now. I (5'8", 190lbs, cross fit total 1085, 5:10 mile) do the workouts with my wife (4'11, 100lbs, cross fit total 400, half marathoner).
Between one on one personal training, group training, my "bootcamp" workout, and coaching I work with hundreds of clients and athletes every year and can tell you that with out a doubt Capt. Picker's problem is his recruits; just like the guys who come out for the track team for the first time, they are weak, imbalanced and have poor posture. WEAK core, hips, or shoulders. IMBALANCED strong Quads weak Hams = knee trouble, strong Chest Weak Back = shoulder trouble. POOR POSTURE leads to the inability to work though a normal range of motion and properly efficiently perform exercises.
These People need a scaled down version and need to work on flexibility, doing exercises correctly, and correcting their imbalances before they can work on their times or increasing weight which everyone at CrossFit knows. Those are also the criteria to start any workout program. I bet there were 1,000's of push-ups (which done incorrectly can be terrible for backs and shoulders) done incorrectly today on the good Capt's base' with no one interested in quality reps.
You guys put together awesome balanced workouts that a vast majority of people could work up to doing SAFELY.
Which just means the Marines that I helped get into CrossFit will continue to be injury free and in better shape Than Capt Picker's Navy Guys.

Comment #395 - Posted by: Michael at July 11, 2008 9:33 AM

I got turned on to crossfit by a former student and friend who just happens to be a special ops marine/instructor. Before crossfit, I have trained for thirty years. The exercises and regimens called for in this program have shown the best benefits. I coach HS football, wrestling and track, I also teach PE...all my athletes do now is perform crossfit exercises. Nothing has worked these kids harder than this stuff. Forget what this navy boy says,(he is obviously clueless) instead, thank you gunnery sgt. Carey Wells for leading me to this program and for all the xfitters and coaches that know something good when they see it. The benefits are noticeable.

Comment #396 - Posted by: stick at July 11, 2008 9:35 AM

That sexist behaviour at the end is really bad. This would not be tollerated in the UK

Comment #397 - Posted by: Graynub at July 11, 2008 9:38 AM

I would like to state I am in the navy. I work 11-13 hour days on rotating shiftwork. The Navy does not give us time to pt nor even cares if we are in shape.I do suggest that we just don't pay any attnetion to the capt. He seems to be speaking in arrogance and who really cares what fitness program the navy supports anyway? I have yet to even see them let me even work out and being 5'8" i can weigh up to 170 before I'm even out of standards. The navys regs are a joke and most of us know it.

Comment #398 - Posted by: Tutz at July 11, 2008 9:39 AM

Thank you to all of you who serve to protect me and mine. I cannot thank you all enough. And I cannot thank Coach enough. Not enough. Not enough. Crossfit most certainly saved my little civilian life, and I rest just a bit easier knowing that someone's sons and daughters are out their serving with crossfit training their bodies. I can only hope that Capt. Picker retracts his statement before my son is old enough to serve. Of course, he'll have been crossfitting in our basement since day 1, so I'll know he's got the best life-saving fitness he could have.

Capt Picker: I'll be in D.C. crossfitting with Spider Chick this weekend. Why don't you give it a go with us? See how you fair...and see what Crossfit can do for you and your sailors.

Comment #399 - Posted by: WahooCat at July 11, 2008 9:40 AM

havent posted in a while- but wow. Great job, captain. i think you are COMPLETELY dead on. Everything you have said strikes a chord with your entire service, and that is evident by the OVERWHELMINGLY positive response posted here. Keep doing an out-of-the-box great job!

Wait- rest days are still "opposite days", right?

"There's only one thing i trust less than the enemy- and thats an officer with a bright idea." - me

good day all.

Comment #400 - Posted by: amlove21 at July 11, 2008 9:45 AM

Having been around Air force people all my life, since i am the son of one, I can tell you that most of the people on the base near me are so out of shape it isn't even funny. I do these work outs to stay in shape and not get tires when i drive race cars. (Yes it does work!!!) And to see military people that cant keep up with me scares me to think of what is really going on in the military.

Comment #401 - Posted by: cam at July 11, 2008 9:54 AM

Need the Crossfit community help please.

Because it is a rest day, I thought I would take up 2 min of your time to help get the word out for a great cause.

My name is Lysa Adams and I'm Treasurer for a new Charity started by an all volunteer group of skydivers up here in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, The Leap for LUPUS Foundation.


We do one major event a year and raise as much as we can using the sensationalism of our sport to help find a cure for LUPUS.

If you've never heard of LUPUS, it's one of the major reason's we are raising funds. If you have heard of Lupus, you either suffer from it or know/are related to someone who has it.

I need your help in getting the word out to EVERYONE. Please visit our site, tell all your friends, coworkers, family members and click on the Donate button now! ;-)

We are a 501c so it is Tax deductible. All funds will be donated to the University of Washington’s Rheumatology Department that is working hard to find a cure for Lupus!

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask!
Lysa Adams
Treasurer, Leap for LUPUS Foundation.

Comment #402 - Posted by: Lysa 43f/128/5'5" at July 11, 2008 9:54 AM

I'm in the Army ROTC, commissioning in Aug, and the sad thing to me is that i have to deviate from my crossfit workouts a few weeks out from a PT test just to be sure i can max the sit-ups and 2mi run.

A sub-4 Fran doesn't matter to the military.

Comment #403 - Posted by: TravisReese at July 11, 2008 10:16 AM

I'm in the Army ROTC, commissioning in Aug, and the sad thing to me is that i have to deviate from my crossfit workouts a few weeks out from a PT test just to be sure i can max the sit-ups and 2mi run.

A sub-4 Fran doesn't matter to the military.

Comment #404 - Posted by: TravisReese at July 11, 2008 10:17 AM

Great photo.

The captain's comments are just lunacy.

Comment #405 - Posted by: MP M/51/165 at July 11, 2008 10:19 AM

I'm in the Air Force and we (squadron) have been using CrossFit for the last year and a half with great success, nothing negative. I emailed the Capt. to let him know our experience, maybe he’ll do some research next time. Open mouth insert foot.

Comment #406 - Posted by: mag at July 11, 2008 10:29 AM

if you do crossfit, you'll never have to train for a PFT. EVER!

Comment #407 - Posted by: dan at July 11, 2008 10:32 AM

I'd just like to throw into this whole fray a small comment. According to physical therapists and chiropractors, most of the movements in Crossfit are not safe. Keep in mind though; these same professionals (who I work with almost daily) believe all types of running, swimming, biking, weight lifting, and sports to be un-natural and unsafe. If you perform an Olympic lift with the correct form and technique, or even 90% accuracy your chances of injury are greatly reduced. Crossfit's principles are not earth shattering. I am not saying they are not amazing, I'm just saying these movements are things our bodies were meant to do. A dead lift can transfer into lifting a wounded soldier from the ground to the back of a truck. A kipping pull-up can EASILY transfer over to getting over a wall in a hurry. The notion that the military does not need this type of training is erroneous of the good Capt.
It is disappointing to see how our military leaders are responding to something new. Crossfit, while growing on military instillations, is not being forced on any service members. They are deciding to do it on their own due to a desire to be what civilians see us as; capable, strong, defenders of our country. Here at Columbus AFB, many of our higher leadership have not only embraced and supported our members taking up Crossfit, but they are also trying to change the views of what it means to be fit.
For everyone who is not in the military, please do not think those who go to work everyday with the honest intent of protecting our way of life agree with a single word of this mouth piece.
~SSgt Kettermann
Health and Wellness Center

Comment #408 - Posted by: SSgt Kettermann at July 11, 2008 10:33 AM

I predict the XFIT GAMES will be on the same acceleration curve of popularity as the UFC and other so called "Extreme Games"
Just my .02
Remember it takes 8 years to become an overnight success!

And I assure you I am not drinking today!Just tonight.

Comment #409 - Posted by: michael at July 11, 2008 10:33 AM

After some thought. I came to the conclusion that the Capt is miss informed and would do well to attend a seminar and or get some 1-on-1 time w/Coach. I've seen several nay-sayers get persuaded and start drinking from the Kool-Aid cup after having all their points shot down out of the sky.

After all, who is at fault. The kid who was never taught right from wrong. Or the parents who didn't teach him. The Navy needs to pull their head out of & get on baord.

Comment #410 - Posted by: DJ at July 11, 2008 10:40 AM

"One page of results trumps a thousand pages of logic." I don't care what the scientists or doctors say, crossfit has worked for me. As a sailor myself, it has improved every facet of my physical and even mental state.

Comment #411 - Posted by: Zach at July 11, 2008 10:42 AM

I didn’t take time to read all comments, but here is my two cents. After listening to positive and negative criticism for almost 1 1/2 years on Crossfit in the army and trying to promote it throughout my station, i have come to realize one truth. Change is hard for some people. PT is not the only thing this applies to, but all aspects of military life. There will always be the old guard who represents the inability to step outside of the box they developed in, and see the alternate ways. Unfortunately it is something that we are able to fall victim to as well. Let us take this as a lesson to remember that we must understand that explanation and example are the keys to winning over individuals that have a failure to release from to the traditions that take place all around us, and that we must always be on guard to not fall victim to the same within our selves.

Comment #412 - Posted by: CPT Dave Taylor at July 11, 2008 10:44 AM

Why is everyone so furious and excited because someone criticized an exercise protocol? Looks like a bunch of third graders. Pff

Comment #413 - Posted by: Rationality at July 11, 2008 10:46 AM

What's up with all these Soldiers thinking they have a tough P.T. schedule? Did I miss something? Mike in the Corps!

Comment #414 - Posted by: Michael Trichell at July 11, 2008 10:47 AM

I disagree wholeheartedly with what the Captain says in the brief excerpt from an article about his opinion of crossfit. He's wrong, misinformed, misguided. Calling him a douchebag, p^ssy, saying he's got no balls, whatever, makes us look like a bunch of idiots.

Comment #415 - Posted by: Pleepleeus at July 11, 2008 10:50 AM

Damn, all the times I almost met Mr. Pukie and now I find out I could hurt myself.
Thanks, Captain.
Back to barbell curls.

Comment #416 - Posted by: Kevin_R at July 11, 2008 10:52 AM

Okay, I have a lot of thoughts on this one, but most of you people don't deserve the full brunt of my honest opinion on this one, so i will limit this to a few (hopefully) clear(maybe) and concise(doubtful- I drank too much coffee) statements.

-Some of the comments I have read regarding CAPT Picker's statements are incredibly assinine, and it is clear that many of you want the CAPT to deride Crossfit more than he actually did. Let's try to read beyond an 8th grade level, folks(some of you). And I agree, he is way off base, obviously uinformed, and is addressing something he knows nothing about, so he IS wrong, but that is way too much for some of you to handle. He also has a right to an opinion, and you have a right to disagree with him. (Is it too difficult to do so with tact and intelligence? [this last bit does not apply to everyone, so don't get unnecessarily offended])

-His last line is not intended to be sexist unless he is the stupidest officer to ever don a uniform, which I doubt. He jut should have written more clearly in order to eliminate any ambiguity about what he means. And to elaborate, public sexism and racism is currently not tolerated in the least in the U.S. military based on my experience. Others might see differently... Personally, I don't see how naming the benchmark workouts after women is sexist, immoral, or wrong by any means.

-My opinion on the Army and Crossfit: I think Crossfit has amazing potential to physically enhance the combat readiness of our soldiers. Especially today, since many recruits are not even remotely "generally physically prepared," but that stems from a societal problem of which we are all aware (abundant fat-asses in all directions the eye can see). However, many people in the military misinterpret Crossfit to basically be high intensity bodyweight circuits and nothing else. Better than nothing, but they completely neglect the max effort / powerlifting / oly lifting portion that is equally important to being "Crossfit." I am concerned that if the conventional Army ever adopted Crossfit across the board, it would end up doing Cindy three times a week (or something similar). I hope I'm wrong...

-To make another point regarding the Army and Crossfit: many of those who should use it because it specifically helps them do their job do so, and the rest are starting to, minus those who can't understand it so they write it off (they'll come around sooner or later). On the other end of the spectrum job-wise, I would prefer expertise over superior fitness in most support soldiers whose jobs are clerical, logistic, and administrative. If they do a two hour Fran (exaggeration) but get me all the logistial support I need, then I'm happy. If they have a 10 second Fran but bring me tanker rounds (or some sh*t) for my M4 when I'm winchester I'm not happy. I know those examples are extreme, but do you see my point? Of course, if they could all be as fit as we want them to there would not be much discussion on this. Until the Army actually enforces fitness and body composition for all soldiers in all units regardless of rank or specialty, the demand for Crossfit will only be from those for whom physical fitness is vitally important.

And yes, in Crossfit there is increases potential for musculoskeletal injuries... compared to sitting on your fat ass eating twinkies all day.

If you warm up properly, pay attention to the movements, and learn to balance techniques and intensity, Crossfit has a very low risk for injury. In other words, the only person who can hurt you doing Crossfit is yourself.

That was way to g*ddamn long-winded...

Comment #417 - Posted by: will o. (29/m/6'2"/205 lbs) at July 11, 2008 10:53 AM

Amen to comments 416, 417, and 419 (I'm in the Army so who cares about 418, lol, JK). I completely disagree with the Capitan's analysis, and I think he should take a broader view of his services PT program, but some of the name calling above reeks of mob-rules thinking and piling on. Try to keep in mind people that he's still a man who's served his country in uniform for over 20 years before you tell him he "has no balls."

Comment #418 - Posted by: James at July 11, 2008 10:55 AM


I scaled back the 10k to a 5k (I don't want to upset the Capt.) Just kidding, I've been off and on the CF program so I wasn't ready for a 10k yesterday (+100 degrees in Vegas). I did the 5k today as it was only 85 degrees outside. This is a good program and I appreciate what it has done for me and my soldiers that use it. I agree with most of the previous comments "the Capt is mis-informed..." I think an invite to one of the facilities or a seminar would clue him in. As far as "Core Values" go - GIVE ME A BREAK!

5k - 30:03

Comment #419 - Posted by: David S. at July 11, 2008 10:56 AM

I love CF but as a Ph.D. in Biomechanics and Ex. Physiology I would agree with Cpt. Jon Picker, USN
Coach Walker
CrossFit Trainer Level 1

Comment #420 - Posted by: Coach Walker at July 11, 2008 10:57 AM

Aren't ships generally named after women? I know Naval vessels aren't, but I thought giving a ship a female's name was sort of a compliment. Aren't hurricanes given feminine names? Same goes for these workouts. Is anyone really offended by that? I can't imagine anyone being offended. If they were given male names would that also violate the Navy's corps values?

Comment #421 - Posted by: Jason Smith at July 11, 2008 11:00 AM

I'm a licensed DC and have been for over 10 years. I do Crossfit.

Your chiro is offering you an opinion. Not a professional opinion, just an opinion about something he does not do or understand. Just about any exercise done incorrectly can do damage and cause injury (duh!). Inherently life entails risk of injury as well (duh!). A person can get hit by a car just walking across the street, does that mean we stop crossing streets. A big part about crossfit is preparing for the unknown physical demands placed upon us. Your chiro is also used to treating and caring for patients who will never be healthy enough or conditioned enough to come close to any Crossfit routine. Most people in America are overweight and should be worried about "under-conditioning" not "over-conditioning". Its kind of like the newbies to Crossfit who come to the site and ask questions like "The weights are so lite, can you really get a workout with such a lite weight?" Meanwhile the rest of us are just trying to keep up with whats posted because were busy doing, not typing.

A comment such as that brings up a bigger issue prevalent in American society. Many doctors are cautious and ere on the side of conservative recommendations. This helps to avoid litigious individuals out to get a quick buck at someone else's expense. America has been so watered down with liberal political correctness and corrupted at the legal core by lawyers, its a wonder we can breath without an act of congress. As my European friends say..."You Americans can be so stupid, but that's good because your system is set up for stupid people." I hate to admit it, but there is some truth in it. Look around at all the warnings that are supposed to protect us from danger.

In my professional opinion and through personal experience with Crossfit, I can say it is safe if done properly (That is a big IF). I will also say I do not believe it is for everybody, not because of physical limitations (that too), but for lack or mental capacity to understand and will to perform.

My statements here are my own personal opinion and in no way should be misconstrued as chiropractic/medical advice. Seek out the advice of your doctor for more specific answers to your health and exercise related questions, hopefully they do Crossfit.


Comment #422 - Posted by: Dr. D at July 11, 2008 11:03 AM

There is potential for injury with ANY form of high intensity exercise. Crossfit actually stresses correct spinal alignment in a degree which I have never seen emphasized by any other workout program. If the Marine Corps has adopted it (and the Corps is pretty selective) then it must be pretty legit.

If naming a workout in honor of women (whether in general or in honor of a particular woman) is contrary to Navy core values then the guys thinking up these Navy "core values" have some serious issues. I think naming the workouts after woman is actually very progressive in a way. Where else are women associated with such a high level of fitness or physical achievement? Also, the girls names are poetic: the girls are metcons that smoke you out or "heart breakers". I actually don't know if that was the original intent but that was my first thought of the names. I mean, it has a positive connotation for pete sake. Just another example of PCism run amok. Is there a feminist Crossfitter that could touch on this? I'm betting they would have a different view on "the girls".

Comment #423 - Posted by: Evan at July 11, 2008 11:04 AM

Ken C. #360: Apolloswabbie is the Paul who was standing with me when you and I met, so you DID meet the one and only Apolloswabbie!

Comment #424 - Posted by: bingo at July 11, 2008 11:20 AM

If the article that he speaks of is the same one I read in the Marine Times, then I wonder if he read the article. Coming from someone who probably takes his PT test by strapping on a heart rate monitor and jogs on a treadmill for 5 minutes or pedals a stationary bike until his heart rate reaches 140 or he breaks a sweat, whichever comes first is not someone who should be able to influence anyone on matters of fitness.

I say put him up against Jelli in any workout (she'll even do male RX) she gives him a good spanking, then they name the workout after her so he never forgets the power and strength of that woman! Great picture BTW girl!

Someone show him the way!!!

Comment #425 - Posted by: Dana Lynch - BGI Fitness at July 11, 2008 11:32 AM

I'm not sure what female names have to do with core values. In terms of a fitness program, I'd say that CrossFit has done more for me than any physical fitness program that the Marine Corps has thrown my way, and obviously we are adopting it quickly. It's great for sharpening us physically and mentally. Have you guys seen some of the Chiefs on a naval vessel? The Capt should reconsider.


Comment #426 - Posted by: joe at July 11, 2008 11:32 AM

You know what's funny is that I just visited the ER this morning from straining my back from CrossFit (I'm an active duty Navy corpsman, BTW). LoL! As a medical professional (I'm an orthopedic technologist) I can honestly and truthfully say that yes, these exercises DO have the potential to cause serious injury. The smart thing to do is to know your limitations, and what you can and cannot do, how much weight you can handle, and work up to the listed workouts (or "WOD's).

I know once this back pain goes away I'll be back in the gym doing CrossFit again! I was on my second day, and I'm already hooked! I overdid it a bit on day one though - I should have known - but no pain, no gain, right? Thank God today is a rest day!

Comment #427 - Posted by: IIIThreat at July 11, 2008 11:37 AM

I wonder if hurricanes are against their core values as well.

Comment #428 - Posted by: Eric Lester at July 11, 2008 11:38 AM


I was hoping to bump into you as well but I found that when I got to the Games I was just so focused on competing I didn't find much time to be completely social until the final day. Had I remembered you were there I would have looked for you! Thanks for your praises and well done yourself!!

Comment #429 - Posted by: gaucoin at July 11, 2008 11:42 AM

never read a more non-convincing and just all around stupid argument in my life....

ran on the treadmill since it was raining out... CFWUx1 then 10k in 53:00!!


Comment #430 - Posted by: Mark Nelson at July 11, 2008 11:43 AM

I don't think it should be a regular named workout in the rotation but the effort was so inspiring The "Kallista" should be personal benchmark like the CFT. Body weight clean and jerk, 30 reps for time. A meet and greet question is what's your "Kallista", and CFT. Just my .02

Comment #431 - Posted by: Sky King at July 11, 2008 11:43 AM

Well tut tut Captain Picker!

I'm a 77 year old women and would like to think that one of the "girls" carries my name.
Every young woman I know feels the same way.
Just maybe your precious Navy "Core Values" need reprogramming.
Are you guys going to also ask the National Weather Service to stop using "girl's" names for those tough storms?
On the other hand, I can understand the concern
about the toughness of the workouts.
You and your advisers or superiors need to understand that CrossFit workouts are scaled according to individual capabilities and potential. Caution is always used with beginners, however fit they claim to be, with rhabdomyolysis in mind.
You need to get your minds around the concept of working into extremely tough, metabolically challenging and functionally complete work outs, so important to a useful, rewarding, happy life.
My wish for you is that when you escape the narrow mind-numbing confines you now find yourself in, that no matter your age or physical condition, you will give CrossFit a go.
If not that, then please at least do 25 air (unloaded) squats every morning and 25 lunges. See CrossFit Journal 2002, Issue 3, p.2 for correct form for the squat.
It will change your life.
I guarantee it.

Comment #432 - Posted by: Mary Conover at July 11, 2008 11:43 AM

I know nothing of this officer, but I am sure hes is full of himself. I have been doing crossfit for 3 weeks and I have never felt better, been more energized everyday and felt so strong.

In high school I was in amazing shape(that was 4 years ago) that shape was achieved by swimming at a national competition lvl a minimum of 3 hours a day and lifting weights 3 times a week. My fitness level then is nothing compared to the improvement I have seen and felt in the last 3 weeks.(I was in horrible condition)

This comparison just goes to show how successful Crossfit is. I expect to be a crossfitter for life and I have just started.

Comment #433 - Posted by: B. Knudson at July 11, 2008 11:48 AM

Lately the "Times" (Air Force, Army, Navy, Marines) has gotten to be like the National Enquirer, full of crap but every once in a while it may have a real story, you would just never know it. Maybe someone from their fitness department should evaluate it. Many Marines are living by this so it can help us do what we are trained to do, kill bad guys. And what the heck is this about being "contrary to our Core Values"? Marine CV are Honor, Courage, and Committment. Ask any one of these ladies if it bothered them that they have a workout named after them. I can hear it now, "Hell know, I am glad that my workout will kick your a$$ and make you puke!" Live Large!

Warhawk out!

Comment #434 - Posted by: Warhawk at July 11, 2008 11:50 AM

The amazing thing to me is that coach and or lauren post this article critical of crossfit. They obviously have some hard data to back them up.
Seriously what other organizations will put up opposing views on their front page!?

Put up or shutup. 3,2,1, go!

Comment #435 - Posted by: a roden M\40\6'\273 at July 11, 2008 11:57 AM

I've spent almost 10 years in and around the Navy and the military in general. As a former active duty sailor, and now as a Personal Trainer contracted to the Navy I can tell you that trying to get the upper chain of command to change on anything is the next closest thing to impossible. CPT. Picken sounds like one of those career sailors that feel that the Navy (or Army, Airforce, Marine Corp) way is the best way to do anything; that the program is beneficial to the sailor, soldier, airman, or marine under their command is irrelevant.
People with that mindset will automaticly close theirs minds to anything not concieved by the military, even if the concept presented to them (such as crossfit) is beneficial to the people under their commands.

CPT. Picken sounds like one of those people that will tell you that all you need to get in shape is the Navy way: Push ups, sit ups and run a couple miles. We all know that none of those will provide an indication of your physical fitness.

As I've stated before, I'm a contracted Personal Trainer with the Navy and I've had conversations with my local Navy Fitness Leadership and I can tell you they want nothing to do with Crossfit, despite seeing growing numbers of active duty Sailor performing crossfit WOD's in the gym everday. The only thing thing they will support is the Navy's 24 week return to readiness program, which I can tell you is pure low intensity garbage; you see the same people in this program month after month and you never see one physical change. When the service member fails to improve on this program the blame is placed on the members lack of displine, which is partially true, but no blame is ever placed on an inferior fitness program. I've told them they should get their civilian fitness empolyees crossfit certified and provide the service members a program that will be truely beneficial to them. But as per usual, they refuse to listen. The individual service member will just have to do it on his or her own, and the weak will fall by the wayside.

Comment #436 - Posted by: Tony at July 11, 2008 11:59 AM

I'm ashamed to say that I'm one of those out of shape Air Force people. I'm in a career field that's undermanned, and required 24/7. The only fitness regimen I'll say 50% of my co-workers follow is the mandatory fit test. Sad I know, but the AF has downsized and made 12 hr shifts a norm (for us at least).

BUT my point is an individual has to be SELF-MOTIVATED no matter what his/her career is, you know? I heard about Xfit from someone who improved their run score by doing it. At the end of the freaking day ANYTHING we do to improve our fitness is a hell of a lot better than sitting at home watching AFN, drinking at the E-club or playing Rock Band.

Finally I want to say that when I was deployed to a place I'll call..."what-the-heck-a-stan", the largest person on base was a Navy female. If we weren't on a bare base in the middle of nowhere I wouldn't have believed that she was in any military branch. The AF has it's fitness issues no doubt...but the Navy is the last service who should throw stones at ANY fitness concept.

Comment #437 - Posted by: nick at July 11, 2008 12:00 PM

Well, there are almost 2,000 threads about injuries on the forum, but Crossfit never injured anyone... no?

Comment #438 - Posted by: Rationality at July 11, 2008 12:01 PM

Let me clarify I agree from a position of if you have a person who may be unfit by definition such as a pathological condition, biomechanical condition of mis pattern, failed fitness test ect.
Now my question to Capt. Jon Picker is:
A. What studies have you to back your concern and/or statement via base records, DOD, CDC ect.;
B. Have you reviewed NIOSH injury reports, base medical data of ER visits by military enlisted with injury documentated as CF related;
c. What % of Medical Discharges are related to CF
vs. non CF injuries;
Hell I could do a whole study on this matter and get another PhD, but I do not want to.
CF applies to everyday real life and military physical duties such as getting out of a chair, keyboarding and/or confined space entry, battlefield physical agility and endurance.


Battle Focus Training

1. What is the number one principle of peacetime training?

Replicate battlefield conditions.

2. What regulation governs Battle Focus Training?

Field Manual 25-101.

3. Should all maintenance be on the unit’s training schedule?


4. What drives the METL development process?

Battle focus.

5. The CSM and key NCOs review and refine the supporting tasks for two things in each unit. Name those two things.

Each skill level in every MOS within the unit
6. Why must the entire METL development process be understood by NCOs?

So that NCOs can integrate soldier tasks.

7. Training schedules are developed at what level and approved by whom?

Developed at company level and approved by the battalion commander.

8. In the military structure, what is the lowest level that has battle tasks?

Battalion level.

9. What begins the training planning process?


10. Do soldiers have a legal responsibility to attend scheduled training?


11. What is a low density MOS?

An MOS within an organization or unit that is required but applies to a very small amount of soldiers.

12. Why is it particularly important to train and monitor low density MOS soldiers?

Sometimes their hours are different and they get lost in the shuffle and therefore remain untrained if not monitored and included in training.

13. Primarily, there are three methods used to present training. What are they?


14. What is a battle drill?

A battle drill is a collective action rapidly executed without applying a deliberate decision-making process.

15. What is a crew drill?

A crew drill is a collective action that the crew of a weapon or piece of equipment must perform to use the weapon or equipment.

16. What is the most difficult task for an AAR leader?

To avoid turning the discussion into a criteria or lecture.

17. Where should an AAR take place?

At or near the training site.

18. What is training strategy?

The method used to attain desired levels of training proficiency on METL.

19. What are post operation checks?

Tasks a unit accomplishes at the conclusion of training.


Coach Walker

As far as name I like hurricans and women.

Comment #439 - Posted by: Coach Walker at July 11, 2008 12:08 PM

Hi I am training for the upcomming hockey season and was wondering if anyone know a good tabata bike routine and a good tabata run workout.

Comment #440 - Posted by: andy at July 11, 2008 12:13 PM

I'm so proud of you Jenni!


Comment #441 - Posted by: Bobbi at July 11, 2008 12:18 PM

A day behind..

1000m Swim (500, 3x100, 4x50)

10k= :55::03

Took it nice and slow on the 10k.Knee felt good minus a few twinges.

Get some, Go again!

Comment #442 - Posted by: DJ at July 11, 2008 12:21 PM

Hi, all!
As a X-fit client (just started Elements training) I can attest personally to on very faulty quote in the Navy Times article: "....not tailored to an individual..." is the phrase used to describe Crossfit programming--this is a false statement. As a 40 year old (ex smoker to boot!) beginning X-fitter, I would have given up after my first one-on-one session were it not tailored to my specific abilities/age/activity level-this is what makes X-fit such an effective approach and why positive results show in clients who are consistent and listen to their coaches. I hope someone from HQ sends a friendly reminder to the author of this article and correct him on how the X-fit techniques are applied.

Comment #443 - Posted by: JOE at July 11, 2008 12:22 PM


If we got rid of the injury thread on the message board then we'd significantly reduce the injury rate? Would closing the doors of hospitals reduce the number of sick people?

Openly speaking of injury and rhabdo is a unique feature of this program. Be smart about drawing inference from our candor.

Your handle is a misnomer; it implies an acumen you clearly lack. I appreciate and understand your anonymity. Your thoughts would be an embarrassment to any name.

Comment #444 - Posted by: Coach at July 11, 2008 12:26 PM

So many of you's have made great points...much that I wanted to say has been said. thank you very much except with all respect Cpt Pickler needs to understand the moment you walk out the door you are at risk.

Ships are safe in the harbor but thats not what they're made for.....train your people right-it will save their lives...

I think its time the Navy got over the tailhook incident. What does the name of the workout have to do with the quality of the training they are receiving?

#190 botdoy
it may help you to inform the guys that you train with that squatting below parallel is actually better for your kness then holding the squat position higher up-your kness are not designed to support a lot of weight. research "Dr.(squat) Hatfield..he explains that a lot better...good luck to you in your training....have fun! :)

Comment #445 - Posted by: Lee-crossfit suffolk at July 11, 2008 12:28 PM


Military Sports Medicine:
Preventing Injuries and Keeping Our Future Soldiers in the “Game”

By James Oñate

How many times have we heard professional and college athletes talk about “going into battle” or “preparing for war” prior to a big game? We expect highly paid athletes to be in outstanding physical shape and to have the best sports medical care possible when they step onto the field of “battle,” but what about our country’s true soldiers? How are we helping our military “athletes” achieve optimal physical fitness levels and prevent injuries while keeping them in the most important “game” of all – protecting the country!

Military readiness commanders became increasingly aware of the implications of injuries in the armed forces in the early 1990s. In response to recommendations from the Office of the Army Surgeon General, the Armed Forces Epidemiological Board formed the Injury Prevention and Control Work Group in 1994. Because of the strong emphasis placed upon soldiers’ physical fitness to ensure their readiness for combat, training-related injuries continue to be a major concern for the U.S. military.

In a 1999 report, the Department of Defense (DoD) listed military training-related injuries as the leading causes of disability, decreased military readiness and lost productivity. In Operation Desert Shield and Operation Desert Storm, musculoskeletal injuries sustained off duty while participating in sports and recreational activities, as well as during physical fitness programs, were the leading causes of medical evacuations and hospitalizations for Army personnel. According to the DoD, the Department of Veterans Affairs spends approximately $13 billion and the armed forces pay $1.5 billion annually to treat soldiers with disabilities caused by unintentional injury. Musculoskeletal and orthopedic-related injuries account for 63 percent of all disabilities.

In 2003, the Naval Environmental Health Center issued a focus statement targeting five key areas for combating the effects of injury: determine the existence and size of the problem of injuries; identify causal risk factors of injuries; determine what prevents injuries from occurring; develop and provide guidance for implementing prevention strategies; and continue surveillance and monitoring of injury prevention methods.

The Military Sports Medicine Injury Research Consortium
Because Hampton Roads is home to the U.S. Atlantic Fleet, Special Warfare Operations and numerous military training centers, it was an obvious decision to make military sports medicine a focus of Old Dominion University’s sports medicine research laboratory. Faculty from the Department of Exercise Science, Sport, Physical Education and Recreation and the School of Physical Therapy established the Military Sports Medicine Injury Research Consortium (MSMIRC) last fall to discuss methods to improve the health care of military personnel. Participants included faculty from the colleges of Education and Health Sciences, certified athletic trainers from the Naval Warfare Special Operations sports medicine health care group, the head of the physical therapy department at Naval Medical Center Portsmouth, ODU Reserve Officers Training Corps commanders and cadets, and ODU physical therapy and athletic training graduate students. The consortium’s goal is to become a global leader in providing a multidisciplinary approach to the investigation of injuries that commonly afflict active-duty and retired military personnel.

Joining me on the MSMIRC initial development team were Old Dominion colleagues Bonnie Van Lunen, director of the graduate athletic training program; Martha Walker, director of the physical therapy school’s motion analysis laboratory; Elizabeth Dowling, graduate program coordinator for the exercise science programs; and Michael Tamburello, assistant professor of physical therapy. The group plans to invite representatives from Virginia Commonwealth University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to a second MSMIRC meeting
this fall.

Preventing Military Training-Related Injuries
Lower-extremity musculoskeletal injuries resulting from physical training, such as ankle sprains, knee and thigh injuries, and shin splints, are particularly prevalent in the military population. These injuries result in loss of training time, and thus decreased military readiness. Risk factors associated with musculoskeletal injuries include low levels of current physical fitness, low levels of previous occupational and leisure time physical activity, previous injury history, high levels of running, high amounts of weekly exercise, smoking, age and biomechanical factors. Using this data, researchers have been able to focus on establishing injury-prevention methods. While numerous studies have been conducted on Army, Navy, Marine and Air Force cadets during basic training, there is no current research on university ROTC training programs and their incidence of training-related injuries. Empirical data are needed to categorize and classify ROTC training-related injuries in order to develop prevention strategies for members of this physically active population who may one day be called to get in the “game.”

For its initial projects, the Military Sports Medicine Injury Research Consortium will conduct one on-campus and one off-campus investigation. The consortium will also provide healthcare tips as part of a three-year study tracking the incidence of injury among the university’s ROTC cadets. These studies will test the feasibility of conducting injury screenings of biomechanical lower-extremity risk factors, including the evaluation of movement patterns and analyses of body composition. The ultimate goal is to keep cadets healthy during the rigorous demands of military training. The second collaborative project involves the joint efforts of Old Dominion, UNC-Chapel Hill and the military academies of the Army, Navy and Air Force. The epidemiology of anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tears, a debilitating knee injury, will be prospectively analyzed in recruits over their four-year military academy careers to identify the risk factors for ACL injury occurrence.

MSMIRC’s Future
Old Dominion University is quickly establishing itself as a vital resource in the field of military sports medicine. In the future, the consortium will explore establishing ROTC sports medicine clinical centers which would offer care similar to that provided to varsity athletes; organizing internship opportunities for graduate athletic training program students at Naval Special Warfare Operations sports medicine clinics; and increasing collaborative efforts with researchers from VCU, UNC-Chapel Hill and the Naval Environmental Health Center in tracking the incidence of training-related injuries among ROTC cadets.

James Oñate, assistant professor of exercise science, sport, physical education and recreation, is director of ODU’s Sports Medicine Research Laboratory. He helped develop one of the tools for biomechanical analyses of injury risk and will be directly responsible for the Military Sports Medicine Injury Research Consortium’s ACL injury study at one of the nation’s military academies.

CAPT JON you must do a study.

Coach Walker

Comment #446 - Posted by: Coach Walker at July 11, 2008 12:28 PM

No comment on Core values arguement of my fellow Navy Captain, and he in no way defended or endorsed the Navy PRT program. The Navy PRT program is a measuring tool not a workout, but that is not Captain Picker's point.

His point, and it is spot on about CF is; "Several SMEs in the sports medicine field (military & civilian) have
addressed a concern that the program has the potential for causing an
increased incidence of musculoskeletal injuries and even muscle
breakdown (rhabdomyoloysis) and therefore is not supported by CPPD."

Reps of Oly lifts done in sloppy style are an ortho issue waiting to happen. The embrace of rhabdo and pukie is also a legit criticism. If you disagree, that is your call. As an open and frequent critic of CF, i have always at least given due respect for the respect you normally give the military. I seems that applies only to the military who agrees with you completely.

Many of us do not agree with the CF philosophy or the Navy PRT program, and can still blow away the PRT. Because CPPD doesn't support your program, you come unglued?

Maybe all your workouts should be named after women...

Just My Opinion

Comment #447 - Posted by: Capt Jack at July 11, 2008 12:35 PM

#419 will o.
“His last line is not intended to be sexist unless he is the stupidest officer to ever don a uniform, which I doubt. He jut should have written more clearly in order to eliminate any ambiguity about what he means. And to elaborate, public sexism and racism is currently not tolerated in the least in the U.S. military based on my experience. Others might see differently... Personally, I don't see how naming the benchmark workouts after women is sexist, immoral, or wrong by any means.”


If you are applying that I don’t know what he means by this statement then what does he mean? Also you are correct in writing that if an officer in the United States Navy is going to make such a remark, he should definitely make sure it comes across the way he means (not sexist in your opinion). Thanks.


Comment #448 - Posted by: SteveSRT at July 11, 2008 12:43 PM

I really don't see why he is even worried about it. I used to be in the navy, and their "fitness program" is the biggest joke i have seen. I think any change could only be better for the navy. And I guarantee that Capt. doesn't do any of the PT himself. But hey what do I know?

Comment #449 - Posted by: buffettfan45 at July 11, 2008 12:44 PM

Please, can someone explains to me why a lot of posters said things like : ''I'm sure he doesn't workout'' or ''he should challenge me in a WOD''?

Does Coach workout? Don't think so. It doesn't stop you from following his advice.

So what about the attacks on the Captain?

Comment #450 - Posted by: Rationality at July 11, 2008 12:47 PM

if anybody was curious, here's the Navy Times articile he was referring to. http://www.navytimes.com/news/2008/06/navy_crossfit_062208w/

Comment #451 - Posted by: Dow at July 11, 2008 12:48 PM

Coach, I wish you took more time to reply to your emails, instead of feeling the need to comment on the board banter.

Love you like a brother. Thank you for CrossFit. It's changed my life.

Comment #452 - Posted by: Mark@CrossFitOffTheGrid at July 11, 2008 12:49 PM

A buddy of mine has his trident....and when he was in the intial stages of Naval training...(i.e.- the naval "boot camp" a.k.a- "a joke") prior to BUDS he said he used to try to get into trouble so he could have PT, because their CATERED REGIMENT OF PERSONALIZED NAVAL CORE TRAINING...was making him DIGRESS....not to mention this was BEFORE he discovered CF!

I laugh in the face of ignorance...SIR.

Comment #453 - Posted by: pure at July 11, 2008 12:50 PM

#447: Since you state you are an "open and frequent critic" of CF, you are likely not a regular reader of these boards, and so not familiar with the overarching context within which most of us read the quote you excerpted.

Within many fields of "scientific" endeavor there is a tendency, which we have examined in many ways on many threads like this, to protect what is "known", and reject the new. This is done not by an objective process of evaluating evidence, and contrasting and comparing different ideas.

Rather, it is done by disabling the process of comparison by rejecting the new idea in principle, without any empirical verification whatever.

As an example, I can with a high confidence level predict that the Subject Matter Experts consulted were not CrossFitters. They were likely unqualified to do or teach Olympic lifts, and thus would themselves be very prone to injury were they to do this program.

Thus when we read someone dismissing CrossFit with respect to the entire Navy, based on a very small sampling of biased reviewers, it's aggravating. We do this stuff. We do these workouts, and many of us have been doing them without any injury other than soreness for years.

So we know, empirically, that we don't get hurt. We know we get stronger, and fitter. We know that were some physical trial to be placed at our feet, we would respond better than practitioners of virtually any fitness protocol of which we know. Many of us have tried the rest, and stuck with CrossFit because it generates more gain for time invested than any other protocol.

The net is that it doesn't sound he--or you--have done what ultimately amounts to a due diligence on this issue. If O-Lifting is your concern, then what about a modified O-lift free protocol? There is no lift anyone anywhere can do that is more functional--meaning applicable in peacetime, the field of combat, and everywhere in the middle--than the deadlift.

Your hospitals no doubt have thousands of back injuries annually. What is being done to prevent that through fitness? What is being done, more generally, to improve what appears to be a low baseline of physical combat preparedness?

As a American citizen, these are all fair questions for me to ask.

Comment #454 - Posted by: Barry Cooper at July 11, 2008 12:53 PM

To comment #30, on your chiropractor not liking some exercises:

I've had back issues since my early 20s. Those issues have practically disappeared since I've been doing Crossfit for the past two years. I used to lift as most people did -- i.e. lots of isolation exercises. Challenging the body as a whole has changed my view of fitness. I'm 35 and as strong as I was as a high school football player.

On that note, a local high school football team adopted some crossfit concepts two years ago. Last year, this team made the playoffs for the first time in five years. I don't think it's a coincidence.

Comment #455 - Posted by: Ronbo at July 11, 2008 12:53 PM

I am an active duty Navy MA stationed in Iraq with one of the SEAL teams here. Guess who introduced me to Xfit... The team guys. They do this stuff all the time. The teams are true leaders and innovators when it comes to fitness. When we were back at the Creek we weren't doing "navy PT" we were doing a version of Xfit. I have kept it up since I got out here and have lost 20 lb so far, gained a TON of endurance and feel better every day. I DREAD when I have to go back to the ship and do "Navy PT". It's boring as hell and the gains are so much slower. I am just happy that I live near Langley AF base which has a little Xfit gym and a pool. Doing Xfit has got me in such good condition that I plan on going into the EOD program when I get back. STAY MOTO.

Comment #456 - Posted by: Michael Wheeler at July 11, 2008 1:01 PM

I knew when I saw the teaser this would get attention but 400 posts? I practiced CF for a year...yeah it's a good workout...but not the only way to achieve fitness goals. I think the reason negativity directed at CF evokes such passionate response is the belief that it is the only regimen that will get you to the highest possible level of fitness while looking down your nose at every other program and the "wimps" that subscribe to them. That said I'm less surprised at the responses than that it took 177 comments to find a devil's advocate to eloquently state the obvious (thank you, sachem).

Spider Chick, you are an entertaining writer, a bit too glib for my taste, but why so defensive? If CF works for you that's great. Keep doing it but as suggested before me "lighten up already". And bravo to the voices of reason Bev K and dragoon; and Rationality, thank you for a good laugh delivered in the space of two sentences. Last but not least, will O, you drank just the right amount of coffee to post an entry worth reading but why did you wait so long to do it?

This long trail makes an interesting statement about CrossFit. Enough said.

Comment #457 - Posted by: Kate at July 11, 2008 1:05 PM

Need the Crossfit community help please.

Because it is a rest day, I thought I would take up 2 min of your time to help get the word out for a great cause.

My name is Lysa Adams and I'm Treasurer for a new Charity started by an all volunteer group of skydivers up here in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, The Leap for LUPUS Foundation.


We do one major event a year and raise as much as we can using the sensationalism of our sport to help find a cure for LUPUS.

If you've never heard of LUPUS, it's one of the major reason's we are raising funds. If you have heard of Lupus, you either suffer from it or know/are related to someone who has it.

I need your help in getting the word out to EVERYONE. Please visit our site, tell all your friends, coworkers, family members and click on the Donate button now! ;-)

We are a 501c so it is Tax deductible. All funds will be donated to the University of Washington’s Rheumatology Department that is working hard to find a cure for Lupus!

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask!
Lysa Adams
Treasurer, Leap for LUPUS Foundation.

Comment #458 - Posted by: Lysa 43f/128/5'5" at July 11, 2008 1:07 PM

It seems Capt Picker had the unfortunate experience of being quoted on a subject of which he knows little.

Commercial off-the-shelf?
Wrong. Crossfit is not advertised per se. Can be "found" through word-of-mouth and "bought" with a desire for a higher level of fitness. Constantly varied functional movements to be executed at high intensity are more work than many people are shopping for.

Not tailored to an individual?
Again wrong.
There are more than enough demonstrations, plenty of free advice, many scaled plans to make it the individuals very own training regimen.

"Several SME's in sports...addressed a concern that the program has the potential for causing an
increased incidence of musculoskeletal injuries and even muscle breakdown..."
Agreed. SME's are free to address concerns. Education is the key here. Many trainers outside of Crossfit have no idea what rhabdomyolysis is and how to prevent it. That said, I believe that rhabdomyolysis is far more prevalent than realized in non-Crossfit programs. Crossfit has brought it into the realm of knowledge.

Paraphrased here - Crossfit is not supported by the Center for Personal & Professional Development(CPPD - Navy) because of the concerns of the Subject Matter Experts(SME) as noted above.
No argument here - Capt Picker is in charge of CPPD so if the boss doesn't support it then obviously CPPD wouldn't support it.

"...anyone can develop a program that's very intense but there's a safer way of doing this for our Sailors."
Wrong. Intense programs cannot be developed by just anyone. The trainer must have the knowledge, skills and abilities to point the athlete in the right direction. Coach has done this by providing all of the info - the trainer/ athlete just has to learn to use it properly. The trainer must take into account the athlete who needs (or is asking for) the training. A generic program cannot take into account the various fitness levels and drive of the athletes. Safer = softer when you consider the whole. Training athletes to the lowest common denominator does not work for the upper 10% and certainly does not promote morale and comraderie and the desire to achieve.

"...any program that names exercises after women is contrary to our Core Values."
I don't know the "Core Values" of the Navy (I've seen, "Honor, Commitment, Courage" posted here) but I'm familiar with "Honesty, Integrity, Professionalism, Compassion, Accountability and Respect."
I think of Nicole, Eva, Lynne, Linda (to name only a few) and what each of those workouts put me through and of each of them getting the honour of having a workout that bears their name. I want to give the workout and that honour justice. Intensify that feeling again for the hero workouts.
Naming each workout instills respect, renews commitment, hones courage, encourages honour and remembrance. I can't understand how that would be considered contrary to core values.

How to fix this? Capt Picker should be invited to attend a certification.

Comment #459 - Posted by: jon h at July 11, 2008 1:10 PM

I've seen a ton of other posts about the pathetic requirements for an AF PT test, and I couldn't agree more. I found out about CrossFit from a buddy of mine in ROTC and can't believe I didn't start it right then! CrossFit is far and away better than anything the military (and especially the AF) offers.

Comment #460 - Posted by: Ian at July 11, 2008 1:13 PM

Did you run today?
I did Angie...man, I hate myself! Crappy job and a crappy time. Too crappy to post. Crap.

Comment #461 - Posted by: Angie P at July 11, 2008 1:24 PM

Seriously, these comments have become embarrassing. The Captain doesn't buy into Crossfit. Big freakin` deal. Prove him wrong with facts. I don't think questioning his manhood, his education, his service, and his strength does much to change his mind. And those boasting of sending him offensive personal E Mails, well that`s just real class, isn't it.

"Let's put him through WOD, let's put him through a cert..." He didn't say it wasn't hard.

I read his piece, and I disagreed with it completely. I didn't read it as a personal assault. If you did, well, there's something scrambled in your brain - because these reactions just aren't normal.

Comment #462 - Posted by: Pleepleeus at July 11, 2008 1:28 PM

Comment # 458


You should be thankful for the great men and woman of Crossfit who stand the front lines daily to protect us all. CrossFit is the fitness program that keeps them alive and fighting. Good luck with your soft approach to all your life endeavors. Passion is not a problem here in the CrossFit community as you can tell.


Comment #463 - Posted by: SteveSRT at July 11, 2008 1:31 PM

Highlight video was awesome. Kudos to the editor!

Comment #464 - Posted by: KS at July 11, 2008 1:32 PM


Can you post the entire piece or just email it to me? I just want to put what he said into some sort of context. I went to the website for the Centre but just get a 1 page PDF doc.


Comment #465 - Posted by: Marc V at July 11, 2008 1:32 PM

Comment #458


It's obvious you don't understand that CrossFit IS superior to every other fitness program, in the angle we're talking about here...

Preparing men and women for combat...

No other program puts out like this one, and until you have personally spoken to someone who has been in combat AND used this program, or have been in combat yourself...Don't jump to conclusions

Comment #466 - Posted by: Sam at July 11, 2008 1:35 PM

Captain Pickering,

I am a serving police officer of 21 years with the Metropolitan Police Service UK. A physical training instructor of six years with a life time of interest in health and fitness. I have always strived to find the perfect fitness program. It does not exist. However I discovered Crossfit in September 2007 and have followed it more and more closely as the months have past. I approached with an open mind but was cautious. Did my research and carefully scaled all my WODS until competent to complete as required. I still scale some workouts. My job requires a kind of fitness that calls for static strength, explosive power and endurance. Crossfit is the first regime, in my experience, to offer something close to achieving this. I am 42 this year and have learnt some incredible skills and made PR's in all aspects of fitness. The important things to note are that it all scaleable for all levels, my wife now follows the program and we both enjoy discussing how to scale the WODS. Your opinions are typical of the ignorant and those stubborn to change. Do you really believe that the fitness program the Navy offers is in its original format and unevolved, of course not! It has evolved and improved over decades.

As for the WODS named after girls. They are not faceless girls names but heroines of the Crossfit community. Founders and highly achieving individuals, inspiring all those around them. Just like the fallen heroes from the NAVY Seal team members that the male named WODS are honouring.

Engage brain before speaking!

Comment #467 - Posted by: Colin Menniss at July 11, 2008 1:37 PM

I laugh when I ponder what the good Captain would have to say about the fact that many routes in Iraq are named after porn stars and liquor brands.

It's disappointing that this officer wrote what he did. He doesn't write particularly well. "Additionally" should never be used to start a sentence; try "furthermore", or maybe "besides which". The pronounced lack of polish in the brief section of prose quoted on the CF site (taken from a piece written for publication, not a one-off email or blog post) is indicative of either a lack of attention to detail or a deficiency in education...or possibly both. Either way, it's disappointing to see an O-6 write that badly.

Anyone who has spent any time aboard a Navy base other than Coronado or Little Creek knows firsthand the results of the Navy PT program. It's obvious that the Navy has failed spectacularly in ensuring the physical fitness of its sailors. With the exception of the NSW community, sailors who are fit have become fit entirely independently of any command-mandated PT. The proof is in the pudding; the sheer number of fat nasties in the Navy demonstrates the Navy leadership's failure to ensure that sailors meet any meaningful standard of fitness. In other words, you have to view these comments within the context of the authority who is making them; it's funny more than anything else.

The one thing that does bother me is that this Captain, through his words and actions, might hinder young sailors from doing CrossFit, and, in the process, decrease their readiness to accomplish the mission and take care of each other.

Coach, did you ever get my email?



Comment #468 - Posted by: Dan M/25/M/73"/220 at July 11, 2008 1:39 PM

I find it funny that there are those here who feel that the Capt was picked on unnecessarily and disrespectfully. He posted comments on a public forum not affiliated with the US military, not a military website or via military email hence he gave up his right to protection due his rank and service. If he feels that he can safely use these things to cover his comments he is wrong. He did use his title and rank to provide some beef to his opinion. For those of us in the military; we are required to respond with common military courtesy despite what we think of what he said. However, it does not mean we must agree. Ok so he does not approve of CF, get in line then. His comments regarding female names of workouts and how that relates to Navy Core Values is very typical of those that take those values, twist them into something there are not in order to crush the male spirit, be politically correct, then publish that hogwash and finally ram it down our throats telling us what Neanderthals we are for acting like men. He is certainly entitled to his opinion but he should have thick enough skin to absorb comments that do not see the world through his same rose colored glasses. Finally for those of us on the combat side of things....one look at his title tells it all..
Respectfully submitted...

Comment #469 - Posted by: William Carroccia at July 11, 2008 1:44 PM

Sam/Steve and others: Could you narrow the blinders a bit more? So the only people we should trust about the excellent benefits of Crossfit are individuals who have seen combat? And any comments to the contrary are irrelevant? According to you, we shouldn't listen to Coach because he hasn't been combat.

Cross fit is an exercise program, perhaps a lifestyle choice, but nothing more. And like all programs, you get out of it what you put into it. In fact if I recall my reading of "What is Cross fit?" it is supposed to be a complimentary program to what you are already doing.

I bet if you substituted Cross Fit for any religion/issue of the day in many of these ranting posts you would be laughing at the friggin idiots saying this shit.

I like Cross Fit, have drank the kool aid but understand that some people don't like it and will swear by Richard Simmons "Sweating to the Oldies". More power to them.

Rant off

Comment #470 - Posted by: Marc V at July 11, 2008 1:47 PM


Whoa. Despite that Picker is talking nonsense, give the guy sme respect as a naval officer as well. If you have served any time in the military, hack away at him- you have earned the latitude to do so. If you have not ever served, calling him a pecker is certainly indicative of your real respect for the military.

Comment #471 - Posted by: SheepDawg007 at July 11, 2008 1:54 PM

I have been a running (track and cross-country) for 11 years now. I went to college for running and had what I believed then to be the hardest workouts. I came across crossfit a few months back while i begun to train for USMC OCS. I have be doing the WOD's and very little else and already I can say that these are the toughest and most productive workouts available. With OCS 10 weeks away there is not dount in my mind that I won't be in the best shape of my life and I have to give credit to Coach and the rest of the Crossfit staff for that.
For this Capt. to make that statement just shows the lack of personal responsiblity that he feels towards the physical wellness of the men and women in uniform. Crossfit should be wholeheartedly adopted by the armed service, but unfortunately politics play a longer role in military doctrine than safety.

Comment #472 - Posted by: Matty K at July 11, 2008 1:55 PM

#471 - incorrect, it was a publication distributed by the Navy unit he commands. Paul

Comment #473 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 210 44 yoa at July 11, 2008 2:07 PM

Marc V, like you, I could only find what appeared to be page 1 of the July issue. I could find nothing to lead me to any other pages that may have had this article. I would like to read the whole article as well.

William in #471, I'm confused. He apparently wrote an article for a Navy publication, on a Navy personnel website,as a Navy officer, directly for Navy personnel. I've searched and searched and can't find the article, so its hardly "public". It was excerpted here on the Crossfit website by Crossfit. The Captain didn't post it here.

Comment #474 - Posted by: Pleepleeus at July 11, 2008 2:12 PM


LMAO! Jared, you're so right! The Capt. just needs to stop being such a sissy, suck it up, and finish Angie already! ;-)

Comment #475 - Posted by: Jennie Forman at July 11, 2008 2:20 PM

#450 by Rationality
amen to that

Comment #476 - Posted by: elBee at July 11, 2008 2:23 PM

#83 - Sparky who WILL NOT BE ASSESSED is a changed man? :-)

Glad to hear that you love CrossFit as much as we do Sparky. Keep up the good work.

Comment #477 - Posted by: Jennie Forman at July 11, 2008 2:35 PM


I am a little discouraged at the number of personal attacks directed at CAPT Picker. Especially by the active duty members.

Consider this:
CAPT Picker has at least 22+ years of honorable service serving the United States and the world's finest Navy. He has flown helicopters, Commanded a Helo Squadron, served on at least 2 different ships and been a Commodore of an Amphibious Task Group including a Marine MEU (SOC). Given the time frame of his experience he's probably flown in combat (Desert Shield/Storm) or at least ordered men/women into combat. He has deployed for over 6 months several times and probably served overseas.

I tend to give people the benefit of doubt unless they prove otherwise. Unless additional information is available, I refuse to believe that the CAPT has anything less than the best interests of the entire Navy at heart. Notice I said entire Navy. The Navy is not filled with trigger pullers. The Navy is ship drivers, submariners, aviators, etc. And they need to be fit and granted the Navy falls down a little in that respect. But name the last time the Navy failed in its mission to put warheads on foreheads, deliver Marines to the beach, keep sea lanes open, provide gun fire support, provide damage control (fire fighting, flooding, etc). Could the crews of the COLE, S B ROBERTS, PRINCETON, STARK have been more fit? Probably. Did those crews step up heroically and keep their ship from sinking under nearly impossible circumstances? Most Definetely.

CAPT Picker runs a large shore command. He probably has a number of programs under his cognizance, all of them either critical, crucial or important to the welfare of the entire Navy and all of them competing for extremly limited resources. He probably has to make budget, manpower and programmatic decisions most of us would find impossible to make. And he has to make those decisions the best way he know how with the information he has at the time. If the information is flawed, its up to all of us to try and educate and inform in a scientific way, with empirical evidence provided in a respectful manner.

With 7 ships and 27 years in the Navy, and an avid crossfitter, I have a little experience in this arena.

Respectfully submitted,
A Navy LDO.

Comment #478 - Posted by: Robert Allmon at July 11, 2008 2:50 PM

Let me say that I do not endorse the captain's remarks at all especially his trivialization of Crossfit as a "craze" and most especially his statements regarding injury. Crossfit has proven instrumental in my own recovery from serious injury involving nerve damage in my arm, shoulder, and back precipitated by a truck running me over while I was on my bicycle. The function I have regained has been described as "remarkable" by my physicians and colleagues.
That said, the captains criticism of the program as "not tailored for the individual" (moot point as the military doesn't tailor its physical training to each individual anyway) is repeated elsewhere: Mark Twight points to Gym Jones as a place where the individual needs and goals of each athlete are met by diverse unique (plagiarized...unoriginal...) training regimens, The Crossfit Games discussion board on the results from 2008 reflects an obviously passionate division over whether "scaling" is even fair or appropriate and whether ROM is more important than technique (in that case thruster vs. clean and jerk).
A question for the board:
Do you think that "scaling" the workouts is sufficient to rebut the claim that CF is not "tailored to the individual"?

My 2 cents: I think that the scaled workouts are effective, and reading the WOD discussions reveals that most people tailor the program to their own schedule and fitness goals anyway, adding or substituting various workouts. Coach doesn't need to "tailor" the program because most Crossfitters (thanks to the clock and this board) know what they are capable of and what they need to work on. The diversity of exercises I've learned doing Crossfit has given me the tools I need to reach whatever fitness goals I should set, and to open whatever manner of illegal ripoffs in South Africa I feel like (apparently).

Just sayin'...that the whole "tailored" thing is a point that could almost be valid in virtue of its repetition and the fact that the community sort of argues over it even today (in the scaling debate).

Comment #479 - Posted by: Thomas Cusack at July 11, 2008 2:57 PM

#448 SteveSRT-

The particular point I made to which you refer was in response to Graynub's comment (#399):

"That sexist behaviour at the end is really bad. This would not be tollerated(his spelling, not mine) in the UK."

As I said regarding public sexism and racism by members of the military, it is not tolerated and can get you in deep sh*t, but I don't want to delve into that subject because that is not what's important. Possibly CAPT Picker meant to say that WE are sexist by doing workouts with female names, but we don't really know, because I think he botched that statement and left it open for interpretation (way too open if you are reading some of the same stupidly interesting comments I am). I'm not implying that you don't know what he means, I'm just stating for graysnub my assumption that he was not intending to make a sexist remark, it just reads that way. I don't really care what he said or meant, but sexism is not his intent.

Comment #480 - Posted by: will o. (29/m/6'2"/205 lbs) at July 11, 2008 3:00 PM


Catching up on Games WOD's

Full Squat C&J 30 reps (pu$$y weight, too embarrassing to list)


50 Burpees 3:58

Comment #481 - Posted by: bingo at July 11, 2008 3:02 PM

Going to a cert! Aug 9th Virginia Beach. Whoo Hoo!

Comment #482 - Posted by: firedave at July 11, 2008 3:02 PM

being involved with crossfit is a no brainer!!! crossfit is about loyalty, its about the people! its about togetherness! look at the support of the crossfit participants captured on film by von ware! look at these posts!! outstanding! spider chick!!! awesome young lady! i am honored to be involved with crossfit! capt. i suggest you do the same! contact col dan and coach g and really learn about what is going on in today's combat environment and what can ready them for the fight for their lives!

Comment #483 - Posted by: coach b at July 11, 2008 3:07 PM

Robert Allmon,

Another Sailor who made LDO in part for his successes CrossFitting Phase 2 BUD/S students - record breaking PT scores, no roll-backs, and no injuries was summarily thrown under the bus by Captain Picker's unprofessional, inaccurate, ill informed, and ultimately stupid, remarks.

How many years distinguish service compensate for careless, reckless, false comments that directly endangers sailor's/soldier's lives? I don't have the answer. I do believe that minus a retraction and further personal education the Captain's net effect is profoundly negative on the Navy, the sailors, and the country.

The stakes are that high.

Or maybe fitness doesn't matter to the Navy. I'm not convinced it does.

Comment #484 - Posted by: Coach at July 11, 2008 3:16 PM

5 rounds
10 Reps 115# Cleans
10 Burpees


Comment #485 - Posted by: dyagg at July 11, 2008 3:17 PM

I’m an SME that could not disagree (respectfully) more with the Captain. The writing is on the wall and training Service Members to survive in combat with the mental and physical strength to win, not just to pass the PFT is a matter of life and death. CrossFit fills the void perfectly. The articles that have got these academics in the military community running scared are:



Both were published recently across the military times.

It’s to late to stop this train. Our service members are CrossFitting as a matter of routine now with great success. The program has been implemented at unit levels and in some places at the installation level. In my opinion we should be giving Service Members what they want and need – CrossFit. In the process we will be doing them a tremendous service and building credibility into our core fitness programming.

Can’t wait to see the new Army PT Manual!!!


Comment #486 - Posted by: Jimmy Perry at July 11, 2008 3:19 PM

Great video!

I would hate to be Capt. Picker when he checks his email Monday morning...

#78 Byant CF Oahu, it would be interesting if he comes by your place. While I am sure a phone call from Coach and Lt Col Wilson would be helpful to remedy the misinformation he has received, there is nothing like seeing CrossFit in action to see why it works in spite of the perceived increased risk of injury.

Comment #487 - Posted by: saulj at July 11, 2008 3:21 PM

Coach, Lynne-
I posted an email to Capt. Picker that was snagged by the spam filter...

Comment #488 - Posted by: Robb Wolf at July 11, 2008 3:27 PM

I wonder if the Captain is making his ssessment by reviewing some powerpoint presentation in the comfort of an office?
Maybe if he knew what it was like to operate in a hostile battlefield environment he would change his mind.
CF better prepares us for exactly that purpose.
Last time I checked, the enemy didn't care about ourcore values or if I could touch my toes as per the standard Navy PST.

Comment #489 - Posted by: Sean at July 11, 2008 3:33 PM

I am the guy in the video midway trying finish off my last clean and jerk of 155# (first time attempting that workout and it had to be 20 lbs heavier) after murdering myself all weekend. I use to avoid the heavy lifts, or oly lifts,.. but i would be the first to bust out a fran, or helen, or go run 5miles in 35 minutes! Crossfit, and the Crossfit Games of 2008 exposed my weaknesses as no other workout regime can do! I will be more then ready for next years games, and take my place on the podium with my brother-n-law JT of Crossfit Central. Thank you Coach, and thank you for all the bad ass people that make up crossfit.

Comment #490 - Posted by: kris kepler at July 11, 2008 3:34 PM

CPT Picker's comments are what I would expect from most senior military officers. Very few senior members of our military, enlisted or commisioned, are "warriors". They are "managers". Managers like things neat and orderly. Warriors like to get dirty, don't mind a little pain, and have little tolerance for folks who can't hang. I'm sure that CPT Picker has had a distinguished career and I respect anyone whose choses to serve his country as a profession. But, keeping things safe, neat and clean is not the way to get things done if you want warriors who can perform at the cutting edge. That's why SEALS have BUDS, Rangers have RIP, Marines have...well...they're Marines, by God.

Comment #491 - Posted by: brian at July 11, 2008 3:36 PM

To all of you that "sent" a note to the email: did it make your lil personhhod feel better? Why not be a real man and pick up a phone and call him? or better yet jump in the car/truck/tricycle and drive over and actually confront him.

I mean lets get real: someone doesn't like the program and for about 400 people their lives have suddenly felt threatened.

I mean I have drank the kool aid, beleive in the program and sell it to everyone I know; but i am not going to sell it to someone who has their own entrenched ideas of PT.

Some of you have a lot of maturing to do.

Rant off.

Comment #492 - Posted by: Marc V at July 11, 2008 3:41 PM

Hey Captn......I think you ought to come "Taste the Koolaid!".

Comment #493 - Posted by: Mike H at July 11, 2008 3:44 PM

Wow. Seems to me you can get hurt doing pretty much....anything. Stick to cheeseburger curls and leave the rest to us. -USMC

Comment #494 - Posted by: Goebel at July 11, 2008 3:47 PM

Ok, so most people don't agree with the good Captains view. I don't either. But he's entitled to it. Yes, we're entitled to ours, but do we have to be so flippin' arrogant? What a turn off to those who may check Crossfit out and see all the garbage being written today.

Besides, what he says has no impact whatsoever on how you have to think, or say, or do re:Crossfit....More than likely, this poor guy taking all this heat probably isn't your Captain, so who is REALLY being affected by his statement? In the final analysis, not many of us at all. Praise be....

smiles everybody, smiles

Comment #495 - Posted by: MDMelissa at July 11, 2008 3:48 PM

Results speak volumes. Do what you feel is right and don't worry about the naysayers.

It's his loss if he doesn't try it. Press on.

Comment #496 - Posted by: PWOE at July 11, 2008 3:49 PM

this guy is in a very high position in the Navy. It's absolutely fine with me that he thinks crossfit is too dangerous for him, that's his problem. but he's passing his beliefs on to everybody under him. people do get tired of being out of shape and lazy and they want a change. how encouraging is it going to be to those people to say "don't do it, it's too dangerous. you're going to hurt yourself." i've seen pictures of some pretty awesome transformations through crossfit, but it's not gonna happen when people are scared to try because of some guy in a high position mouthing off about what he very likely doesn't know much about.

The TRUE danger in crossfit comes with jumping in too quick. not taking the appropriate time to learn the movements and making your workouts too intense too quickly. that's the only thing i've seen.

Comment #497 - Posted by: Dow at July 11, 2008 3:51 PM

One more thing. Most of us here believe in and protect EVERYONE'S 1st amendment rights...let him say what he wants...it's his loss.

Comment #498 - Posted by: PWOE at July 11, 2008 3:53 PM

First, don't knock it until you do it.

Second, this person is giving an opinion as a captain of the US Navy. I wonder what his personal opinion would be, granted he ever finds out who he really is. It appears he is contaminated by ego.

Third, crossfit is free and offers all the information one needs to stay fit and safe. If one uses the site, one must also take the necessary steps to make sure the exercises are done correctly. Injuries are inevitable when you push yourself to the limit as an athlete. Crossfit should not be held accountable for the decisions of the individuals. The program is excellent; the best I have ever seen for the price.

Fourth, as far as conditioning and self defense/hand to hand combat is taught in the military, aside from elite programs such as the SEALS...it's a joke. I have trained in the martial arts for 17 years from karate, jiu jitsu, muay thai to submission wrestling. Many current and post military men and women have come to my school boasting about hand to hand combat in the Marines or the level of conditioning that is required in the Navy. With the exception of a few who hang in there most get taken out quickly and most quit after the first few weeks. The athletes in the school who do crossfit can hang with just about anyone when it comes to conditioning.

His comments are reflective of him and only him.

Comment #499 - Posted by: Bean at July 11, 2008 3:54 PM

I don't really care what rank, or how many years of service Capt. Picker has. In the end, he is just another human being with a mouth, and he will one day turn to dust like the rest of us. Service and Rank do not excuse a person for making statements which may be flawed, or entirely incorrect. It is not wrong to try and explain to the Captain that there may be errors in his assertions, so long as it is done respectfully.

Not a respect due because he has 22 years of service and holds a prestigious rank, but a respect which all people are due by virtue of common courtesy. Whether you know it or not, all crossfitters are emisaries of this program. People see us doing this stuff in gyms, and how we act and respond to criticism reflects upon the discipline as a whole. It's messed up, but that's just the way it is. If you do plan on sending the Captain a "nastygram", please just take a moment and read through it beforehand and remember that your comments can either improve his opinion of Crossfit and it's practicioners, or degrade it.

**Sorry for the terrible grammar and spelling errors. In a hurry.

Comment #500 - Posted by: Jerod at July 11, 2008 4:02 PM


In the field of science, we just let our results speak for us. If someone doesn't agree with my conclusions, they can repeat my experiments and analyze the data themselves. If they misinterpret the data or screw up the experiment, they make a fool of themselves because many other people can reproduce the experiment and realize that it is right. I'm reading issues of the CrossFit journal getting ready for the cert next weekend. Just fell upon this article where the Canadian military ran an experiment that showed that CrossFit was equally , if not better, suited at training their men than the usual garden variety workout. That is one experiment, the more data the better. You can consider everyone on this site as data in a large scale experiment. Why not offer to run the same experiment as the Canadian military with Captain Picker's men?

Comment #501 - Posted by: M@ at July 11, 2008 4:13 PM

LOL. Wouldn't want the sailors to hurt themselves. CF is so clear in it's WEB BASED instruction and explanation of progressions. If THis Capt. wants more he could go to a certification. And I would hope he could see the knowledge and intelligence available from the website alone. As Daffy Duck would say- "What a maroon!"

Comment #502 - Posted by: Jdog at July 11, 2008 4:18 PM

i agree 100% with the Captain.

Comment #503 - Posted by: Dave at July 11, 2008 4:27 PM

I absolutely love the posts on here where they say; “It’s his opinion, just let him be”. These are obviously not the “A” type personalities that it takes to be combat ready, law enforcement sheepdogs, or everyone else who truly knows what CrossFit stands for. He is wrong and needs to know about it because he is causing others to feel the same way. His subordinates are reading this garbage, maybe, and will repeat it to others just as we spread the word of CrossFit. This in the end will hurt many. He needs to recant what he wrote after he does his actually research and then do his job like he is supposed to. When are they going to post tomorrows WOD, I have way too much energy right now!


Comment #504 - Posted by: SteveSRT at July 11, 2008 4:28 PM


Nothing really to say about the quote today.

Power cleans
185 x 3
195 x 3
200 x 1
200 x 1
205 x 1
205 x 1
210 x 1

5 rds
5 power cleans, 175
10 box jumps, 40"



Comment #505 - Posted by: Jeff at July 11, 2008 4:34 PM

Much agreed SteveSRT, I need a WOD to focus on. Maybe Coach will give us a "treat" to use this aggression we built up all day...

Comment #506 - Posted by: will o. (29/m/6'2"/205 lbs) at July 11, 2008 4:39 PM

Hopefully you are in Oregon, so I can show you that I can hang with you at your fighting style(Ha, Ha, only S.E.A.Ls can hang) Then we can go out to the water so I can embarrass you there(or do you know how to swim), and once we are done there, we can go to the rifle/pistol range so I can further teach you the meaning of a well-rounded Combat Machine. Shoot me a line back, tough guy!

Marine Corps Engineer

Comment #507 - Posted by: Mike Trichell at July 11, 2008 4:43 PM


I think your post is the best of the day. It is truly inclusive and well summarizes, in my view, what has and is transpiring here.

Thank You!

Comment #508 - Posted by: Coach at July 11, 2008 4:45 PM

I just said "3-2-1 Go" to my boss.

Comment #509 - Posted by: Playoff Beard at July 11, 2008 4:50 PM

Thanks coach....


Comment #510 - Posted by: SteveSRT at July 11, 2008 4:50 PM


The Navy in general, individual officers and Sailors excepted, does not care about fitness. Empirically, the marginal contribution in fitness to most of the Navy's mission is small. That is to say, return on investment for making your unit fit is not tangible, particularly when using traditional methods. That's neither a defense or a justification - just my observation. In this way, the Teams are totally different from our other operational units.

I take it from your post that the Captain's position has in some way put AS's initiative at risk. If so, I can see why it generated the response from you that it has.

I hope the Captain takes up Dan on the offer.

I say again, I think a Navy CrossFit wedding would be ugly for both parties but I will do anything I can to introduce the Navy to randomized functional movement performed at high intensity.


Comment #511 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 205 44 yoa at July 11, 2008 4:51 PM

I did not have time to read all of the posts, but I had to say this...

As a woman, I am not offended by the fact that WODs are named after women, because only a real woman could make a man sweat, cry, and possibly puke.

As for it not being tailored to an individual...he's right. But there isn't a single workout program that I've tried or heard of that is. All I know that it is right for me and thousands of others who visit this site daily. And, if done correctly, Crossfit can take your fitness to a whole new level. As a kickboxer, triathlete, and person who is going to do a 50-mile ride for cancer on Sunday...I'm gonna have to disagree with the captain :)

Comment #512 - Posted by: Mari at July 11, 2008 4:54 PM

Consider the CrossFit Army mobilized!!

Comment #513 - Posted by: DBLVD at July 11, 2008 4:55 PM

Brilliant video! anyone know the name of the song?

Fair play to all who organised, competed in and attended the games. Someday i'll cross the atlantic and give it a go! Until then dublin, ireland will have to do.


Comment #514 - Posted by: irish steve 26yrs 74kg 5' 10" at July 11, 2008 4:56 PM

Also, as a side note to some of your members (esp Team members), I would be more than happy to introduce any of them to a brand of traditional high intensity that is safe in movement and high in returns. Any S&C coach worth their salt reading this would surely know what I am referring to. As for the functional aspect of the movements, there is something referred to as the principle of specificity. My thoughts, humbly submitted, train hard and safe in the gym, then go out and work on perfecting the actual skill. Unless there is EKG evidence that shows a thruster has direct transfer to humping your pack 13 miles during SQT? I'm always open to research.

Comment #515 - Posted by: PA_Rob at July 11, 2008 4:59 PM


The song is BOOM by the band P.O.D. (payable on death) from the album satellite.

Comment #516 - Posted by: M@ at July 11, 2008 5:05 PM

A quantification of 'the Navy does not care about fitness.' I have no knowledge of any commander who was hit with an IG investigation for patently false PFA results. Likewise, no in the Navy gets promoted for having an outstanding PFA program. There are people in the institution that care about fitness, but in so far as I can tell, there's no alignment to that where the rubber meets the road. Perhaps I'm wrong in that - would very much like to be wrong in that. Paul

Comment #517 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 205 44 yoa at July 11, 2008 5:07 PM

#532 - M@ thanks.


Comment #518 - Posted by: irish steve 26yrs 74kg 5' 10" at July 11, 2008 5:09 PM

#499 is one of the most arrogant and self-important posts I've ever read. So in a nutshell, No matter what this Captain has ever done for the nation, no matter what he has accomplished, he is ultimately a threat to the lives of service members, and his service means nothing, because.....he...believes there's too great a risk of injury via Crossfit. LMFAO. This whole thing has turned into a ridiculous exercise in taking things out of context to ignite passions for purely egomaniacal purposes. Post #493 by Corben is truely the most accurate post of the day.

Comment #519 - Posted by: Pleepleeus at July 11, 2008 5:12 PM

Wow. Hell of a reaction to quotes from CAPT Picker. But it's not the way all of the Navy feels. Those senior officers who lead their Sailors in PT 5 days a week in port at 0545 are indeed the exception. But the system does recognize them and promotes them ahead of their peers. Changing a service of 460,000 takes time. Especially one that prides itself on sending warships over the horizon to execute missions with a fraction of the micromanagement that our peers in other services and agencies face. But with that independence comes a great deal of inertia and resistance to change. What I've seen work can be summed up in two quotes: "Do the act and the mind will follow..." and "What you do speaks so loud, I can't hear what you're saying..." In other words, lead from the front.
Hoo Yah. Ops15

Comment #520 - Posted by: ops015 at July 11, 2008 5:16 PM

As tax paying citizens feel free to contact CAPT Picker and express your opinion on how he thinks our sailors and marines SHOULD be trained and how 'his' way will help save lives.

CAPT Jon Picker
Commanding Officer
Center for Personal and Professional Development
Tel: (757) 492-5601
Cell: (757) 636-9373
Fax: (757) 492-0753

Comment #521 - Posted by: not active duty at July 11, 2008 5:17 PM

Hey Matt G - long time no see! Where you been?

Yeah, this guy is clueless. Sounds like he reads the New York Times.


Comment #522 - Posted by: TK at July 11, 2008 5:19 PM

Seriously, I have lost 27 pounds of fat and gained 12 pounds of muscle in just over six months doing this, and at 35 I have never been in better shape.

All I know is that I am stronger, faster, and more agile now, and I will be next time I go on a deployment.

I will be able to move my buddy out of harm's way, no matter the conditions. That's the promise I have made.

Studies are great. Especially the ones that don't produce an alternative.

Just go back to the "black box"
Input => black box => output

I am diggin the output, so the frickin black box must be working. I just need to keep puttin' in that work baby!

Rock on Coach. Remember, people used to say the world was flat.


Comment #523 - Posted by: Max at July 11, 2008 5:23 PM

#533 - Apolloswabbie

Appreciate all your comments above. Sent you an e-mail earlier today, but will be away from my work account until Tuesday, so please use the account on the link here to reply if you have the opportunity.

Coach - I'm an Active duty Navy Commander. I agree with you and Paul that as an organization, the Navy doesn't put a big emphasis on physical fitness. There are some commands that do a better job than others, but it is definately a bottom-up push. I plan to make CF available to the extent possible to the sailors on my next ship and to continue doing CF myself. I think the danger in CAPT P's statements is less that it will deter sailors from doing CF (the grass-roots nature of CF will overcome that) and more that he blurs the line between personal opinion and policy-making. At this point, he hasn't made a policy, which is good - I don't want tools taken out of the tool box for my sailors or myself. I hope that he takes LtCol Dan Wilson and yourself up on the offer to discuss CF. We don't need a CF/Navy wedding as Paul so eloquently put it; just don't make a policy that takes the tool out of the kit bag.

For both, thanks for all your dedication and leadership!

Best Regards,
CDR Scott Erb

Comment #524 - Posted by: ScottE at July 11, 2008 5:34 PM

Does anyone think it's odd that there's more posts on a rest day than on a work day (e.g. yesterday)?
We all know Crossfit is great, that's why we're here. There's tons of people in the world that don't think this program is a good idea and many of them will never be convinced, likely this Navy officer included. So what? Keep WOD'ing, get better every day, convert those who want to be converted and get on with your day. Just my simple thoughts.
I love the program and owe Coach so much for the positive changes he's help me make in my life.
Thanks, Crossfit.

Comment #525 - Posted by: Josh G at July 11, 2008 5:35 PM

Mark V #507,

How did your call with Pickler go?

Comment #526 - Posted by: Rob F at July 11, 2008 5:42 PM

Post 484/486

My mistake, I did not read correctly that it was an excerpt from another article in a military magazine and for this I apologize. However, I stand by the rest of my comments.

Comment #527 - Posted by: William Carroccia at July 11, 2008 6:04 PM

I found Captain Jon "Nose" Picker's comment amusing. I spent 8 years on active duty in the Army in the 90's. I chose to leave the military in 2000 due to the ever changing policies and "core values". I decided at that time that I was officially old school and that I had no place in the active military because I would be a poor example of an NCO. I did not, and still do not, agree with all the lovey, hug your buddy, everyone is equal crap. EEO (Equal Employment Opportunity) is crap. The fat people are fat, mostly, by choice. There are few who have legitimate health issues. So, we cater to the weak and keep them around cause we need them. Naming exercises after women? Really? Who cares mister politically correct nit picker. I highly doubt many woman take offense to it. I could be wrong since I'm not one. As far as the "new fitness craze" goes, these exercises have been around long before my day, I'm 33. With the internet and all the electronic communications we have nowadays, it's just more availabe, hence Crossfit's website. Someone, Glassman, Mark Twight or whoever, just put it all together. Now the orchestra is complete. If this program is such a health risk, then why would butt Picker's own elite be utilizing the program. I've worked with SEAL Team guys, Group guys, Battalion guys, Recon guys and more. Most, not all, but most do Crossfit, Gym Jones or something similar. Why? It works. It's the cocky, over achievers who get hurt mainly cause they weren't taught the movements correctly. Ok, I'm off my soap box now. I'm the lone target down range...fire away.

Comment #528 - Posted by: Hoodlm at July 11, 2008 6:11 PM

SteveSRT, nice post.

Resistance to CrossFit is fairly common amongst those who either haven't done it or can't do it.

Its especially frustrating when an official statement is made as in the case of this thread. Its always suspect when it follows a positive article or some peak in awareness and someone just feels they need to save us all by knocking it.

IMO, any resistance to CF is mostly predicated by issues of ego and power plays...their programs don't really exist for the warrior athlete, it's about egalitarian bell-curves & looking good, the program exists for the executive management (look how many graduated type of thinking) and admitting a program needs to be improved or changed undermines their power.

While there are so many moving parts to this issue...at the core, we have a group of in-decision-makers who realize they won't be thought of as the 'smartest' or 'best' if they openly admit the their current program needs work. It hits them where they live (in fear).

We have 'insecurity' evaluating 'security'...and as you pointed out, their insecurities endanger warriors.


Comment #529 - Posted by: Tony Blauer at July 11, 2008 6:12 PM

Captain Picker is probably a soft body just like the majority of the leadership developing Navy fitness standards. Tell him to get off the exercise bike and eliptical machine and take a strain.

The Kid

Comment #530 - Posted by: The Kid at July 11, 2008 6:21 PM

Messenger service without any editorial content...

Please go back and take a peek at Apolloswabbie at #208 for a very well-spoken, cordial, and sincere perspective on this issue.

We now return you...

Comment #531 - Posted by: bingo at July 11, 2008 6:30 PM

I love CrossFit...but a Navy Captain who says he doesn't like it is putting soldiers' and sailors' lives in danger? Seriously?

You know who else didn't like CrossFit, don't you?

Comment #532 - Posted by: Milan at July 11, 2008 6:38 PM

You are very correct mr. bingo :-)

Comment #533 - Posted by: Tony Blauer at July 11, 2008 6:39 PM

I never write emails to people I dont know....but I just did

Comment #534 - Posted by: Aaron at July 11, 2008 6:49 PM

For the comments on freedom of speech, freedom of speech is a two way street. The good captain may be free to speak and hold his opinion, but so are we free to disagree and challenge such opinions. While I will assume the Captain has earned the right to be shown respect, that does not mean he cannot be respectfully corrected. Or that he can respectfully disagree and remain flat-out wrong. That's what so great about this country!

Because of freedom of speech, I can also say: #524 lighten up, #499 aka Coach, amen and thanks for the kool-aid, and #535 you can't make the "out of context" slam and then do it yourself.

Since I also am a little bit of hypocrite, I also have to say the captain reminds of the puckered-up Navy officer from Men of Honor. Not necessarily respectful, but I had to say it or my head would pop.

Lastly, as one insightful poster on this site once said, "burpees suck, embrace the suck". Coach can you put that on a t-shirt?

Comment #535 - Posted by: Mak at July 11, 2008 6:49 PM

#42, thanks for the link. It all makes sense now. The picture of the Bodies in Motion dude talking to the Navy Captain.....that is the same dude who wrote the article that all of this discussion is about. It appears he is prone to brainwashing or is highly supportive of any program that comes onto his ship.

Coincidentally, wouldn't the rank "Rear Admiral" be more against their Core Values than naming an exercise after women? Perhaps they should focus more on remaning that rank than on changing an exercise program that is done voluntarily and for free by thousands upon thousands of people all over the world.

Comment #536 - Posted by: Chones at July 11, 2008 6:56 PM

Coach, now might be a great time to put up that interview with a certain LTC and a guy I know really well.....


Comment #537 - Posted by: CCTJOEY at July 11, 2008 7:08 PM

It has only been a matter of time before the tendonitis and musculoskeletal injuries come to the surface. CrossFit has been around for 6-7 years? Sooner or later some long-term injury incidents are going to present themselves.
I’m sorry for the length of this post but I’ve been watching CrossFit for a long time so I have some pent up thoughts to get out there. I don’t really care what private organizations promote in the way of fitness. In fact I don’t feel I have the right to post on your sight… But the good Captain’s post compelled me to show some support.
I have a B.S. in exercise science and an M.S. in kinesiology and I cut my teeth as an S&C coach at the DI level. I can appreciate high-intensity but I do not agree with high speeds of movement. I’ve watched Speal’s shoulder look like it would dislocate from excessive OHS squats and countless other forms of poor execution. You kindly note most breaks in form on your video’s… but this does not negate the fact t hat such speeds forced at such intensity’s run a tremendous risk. I know, I know Mr. Glassman has stated something to the effect that these functional movements have some inherent risk but then so does life and athletics in general. Fair enough but I don’t believe training should add to that stress. If this were the case then NFL football players should hit themselves in the head with a tack hammer to prepare for collisions. I know CrossFit is open to everything and anything but one skill is widely used and that is gymnastics. I would point out that at least at the college level, gymnasts have some of the highest injury rates among any group of athletes per capita.
I digress, this is your right and I am only point out the other side of the coin that I am certain Mr. Glassman and the crew are more than aware of. Believe me as a coach there is always an argument over speeds of movement, ect. No need to go there but I am simply pointing out the Captain’s argument has a great deal of validity. And I am certainly not taking anything away from Mr. Glassman, he is clearly an articulate speaker and has immense knowledgeable in human movement.
The main reason I write in support of the Captain is that I do find the professionalism not in keeping with that of military core values. I know that CrossFit has attracted many military groups. I believe the USS Dubuque (LPD-8) has even put a CrossFit gym on it’s ship?! I am an ex-servi ce member and the Dubuque was in the USS Belleau Wood (LHA-3) battle group in Sasebo, Japan when I served. I gladly served my country and worked hard physically to do so. I am also a combat veteran. During my time of service I kept my attitude and professionalism as tight as my haircut. That said, I find a great deal of the profanity and attitudes during clinics, cert’s and video’s unprofessional and not something the military should support. As a professional in this industry I would not expect to hear the “F” word during a clinic and I’ve personally spoken at many clinics! For example I would point out the video “hot mama?”… in which the camera spent more time on the chest and backside of the mother/daughter pair rather than the content of the workout. This goes for Allison NYC and the emphasis on Nicole‘s backside, to name a few. You get the picture. This is simply not what anyone would expect of the worlds finest military. It is just not how we operate. Being the best of the best doesn’t just mean physically but mentally prepared to demonstrate professionalism at the highest level always.
The Captain has a point, that’s his point and it should be something the military as a whole considers. I do not want to see an end to CrossFit and I certainly do not want to see it lose business… but the Marines have helped build a chunk of your business. As far as the military is concerned: 1. reputatio n and professionalism should be at the forefront here, 2. There are other, safer methods of addressing the 3 metabolic pathways, and 3. We do not stamp our name on something that doesn’t support our core values. And as a final note. I’m glad a SEAL can do Fran in 2:02 but he should be thinking more about his name and face on the internet. Reputation and professionalism come first for us! Marketing is your business.

Comment #538 - Posted by: PA_Rob at July 11, 2008 7:12 PM

So, the July edition of Encompass has been posted sometime today with no reference to Crossfit?

OH darn, he might have reached all twenty people in his unit that would actually read the stupid flyer.

Over 500 comments about an article that doesnt exsist on a one page flyer. Sweet

Comment #539 - Posted by: lar at July 11, 2008 7:24 PM

I wholeheartedly agree with willO. His comments are some of the most lucid posted today. I feel like I just entered the kindergarten playground where someone said something bad about a kid's mother.

How many people here did research into what CPPD does? Where is the usual call for due diligence that is usually prevalent on rest days? Primarily, CPPD influences voluntary education. I work in this arena, and am, therefore, not surprised by the comments of Capt. Picker. (I don't agree with him, by the way.) I tried to find out whether or not CPPD has any major influence on physical training for Navy. I always thought MWR had a larger influence on that arena. If that is the case, CPT. Picker's comments will have as much influence on Navy fitness as the head of MWR would have if he had something to say about any particular college.

Coach, or someone else who would know, please clarify whether Capt. Picker would be an obstacle to CF being utilized by Navy. I honestly don't know. I tried to find out, but I could not find anything that directly addresses this. When I looked on CPPD's website, I could only find an article on preparing for the PRT. It proposed specificity in training, so there is no surprise that CF is contra-indicated as a preparation program. The paper was written by the senior advisor of health and fitness; however, there is no way to know if this civilian has any fitness background. I didn't see any credentials after her name to indicate this. She could be a bean counter assigned to read through info and write articles having to do with this area.

If Capt. Picker, indeed, has some real influence on whether or not CF is embraced by Navy, there is justification for intelligent discourse with him. I don't think that most of the adolescent comments posted today would do much to sway his opinion. I pray that if people directly emailed him they used some level of diplomacy and tact. Vituperation doesn't usually go far in the cause of persuasion.

It truly stinks if an LDO was thrown under a bus by Capt. Picker because of his opinion of CF. Is there any other direct influence that CPT Picker will have on CF in the Navy? Most of the people I know in VOLED have enough on their plates to deal with concerning education, that they will not even know what he is talking about.

I am disappointed to see some of the negativity leveled at Navy based on one individual's comments. The ire would be better leveled at local command leadership who are usually the ones who really hinder CF's introduction in the base gyms. I feel Tony's (the personal trainer on a Navy base) pain. I have been talking with one of the trainers at my base who has also been trying to get more support for CF. It is a local civilian bonehead who is the main hindrance here. I keep hoping that an O-5 or higher will get hooked on CF and make our dreams possible at the local level.

I am also sorry to see the level of nastiness leveled at Capt. Picker as an individual. Disagree with what he says, but don't question his integrity, intelligence, or even fitness level, if you know nothing else about the man.

Comment #540 - Posted by: KisLany_FL F/36/5'8/155 NAS JAX at July 11, 2008 7:25 PM

Hey Mak in #551, your post is right on and fine, especially about respect. But My post in #535 was in no way out of context. The coach completely denigrated a man he does not know, throwing away any and all service he has ever done for the country, because he hasn't bought into Crossfit yet. The post was completely disrespectfull, and I stand by my opinion that the whole exercise here is self-serving.

Bingo, thankyou for redirecting us to #208 - I have no idea how I missed that very long, fair post.

Comment #541 - Posted by: Pleepleeus at July 11, 2008 7:29 PM

I also thank you, Bingo, for pointing out Apolloswabbie's comments up at #208. I got tired of wading through the morass and missed it. (If my other post ever makes it through the filter, I would add his to the short list of lucid comments today.)

Much respect to Apolloswabbie and other reasonable posters. Bingo, thank you for always being a gentleman and for highlighting the gems for those of us trying to pick through the heap.

Comment #542 - Posted by: KisLany_FL F/36/5'8/155 NAS JAX at July 11, 2008 7:39 PM

I don't think anybody on here is "defending" Capt. Picker, but it bears mentioning that "Type-A Personality" does not equal "Butthole". I don't care what the man's rank is, or what he's done. He is wrong. But you don't try to change somebody's mind by being rude and disrespectful.

If you don't want to show the man respect because of his rank, and you don't want to show the man respect because of his years of service, at least show the man respect because Crossfitters are good folks.

Every "Type-A" insult leveled at this man creates a negative view of Crossfitters in the minds of those who do not know better.

The real type-A badasses in this world are some of the most humble, and respectful people I have ever met. If you're wrong, they'll tell you, but they aren't a butthole about it. Feel free to give the Captain your thoughts, but do it with some class for heaven's sake.

Comment #543 - Posted by: Jerod at July 11, 2008 7:40 PM

Captain Picker
With all respects sir. I think CROSSFIT is just what our sailors need. What I have learned from doing CF for just one year is. Be carefull, scale down when needed and have fun. I served aboard 10 ships did standart Navy PT for years. Here's the kicker did a CF workout called fight gone bad and got my ass handed to me. CROSSFIT works.
Retired QMCM
50 and still pulling the line

Comment #544 - Posted by: CAV at July 11, 2008 7:42 PM

Master Chief QM,

I have two Navy brothers on vacation in Jax. One is a die hard CrossFitter (AW2 SAR type). His name is Nate. The other is a Chief (ITC) named Nick.

Nick says his "Sony Wei" has gotten him into "great shape". I hope you guys are doing a FGB or something just as nice!

Both will be at your gym tomorrow morning (probably hungover).

Chief Chris Freischlag (EOD Motivator/Recruiter, EODGRU ONE)

Comment #545 - Posted by: Chris Freischlag CFSD at July 11, 2008 8:04 PM

About Capt. P and all who care.

To each his own.

If you like what you do, don't worry about what someone else thinks.

Comment #546 - Posted by: Lotbts at July 11, 2008 8:07 PM

#559 Jerod.

Well said.


My only intent was to try get people to think before they launched a personal attack. Although, my personal opinion is that the CAPT didn't exactly think through all of his comments.

Limiting the personal attacks and "attacking" the comments themselves using logic and evidence will get you farther in my opinion. Attack the guy and raise his hackles, then no amount of evidence will ever change his mind. To the Navy's detriment, if he is in the position to change policy.

Comments made by Apolloswabbie are right on. As are the ones made by CDR Erb. I don't want policy to change forbidding crossfit at Navy gyms or onboard ships or stations. I don't believe that could happen but you never know. I think the groundswell (or bow wave if we're staying nautical) of enthusiasm will continue and eventually big Navy will notice. I was doing crossfit on GW and when I left, there was fair amount of people doing it with me.

Right now, I don't think Big Navy sees the benefit or return on investment beyond lip service to fitness. But I hope they will. A lot depends on the individual unit's Commanding Officers. On GW we had a great CO who was all about fitness. He's now an Admiral and some day may be just the guy to institute a real fitness policy.

If we had some individual CO's doing crossfit onboard their ships or stations and started comparing their Navy PT scores vs the rest of the
stations/squadrons etc maybe the Big Navy bureaucracy would take notice.

I have some other thoughts about the operator you mentioned making LDO. Congratulations to him, but I doubt he was selected to LDO because of his introduction of crossfit. That might have been what put him over the top, but not the sole selection point. Selection is highly competitive and the board members making the selections review the person's entire career and base it on sustained superior performance in their field.
BTW, are we talking about Ron? If so, doubt Ron would feel he was thrown under the bus. Doubt he would give 2 cents over the Navy CAPT's opinions.

Comment #547 - Posted by: Robert Allmon at July 11, 2008 8:18 PM


Just saw your #208 post. Well said!


Comment #548 - Posted by: Robert Allmon at July 11, 2008 8:53 PM

Mr. Trichell,

Your reply to #514 was very negative. My comments were based on facts from what I have seen to promote Crossfit, and you took them personally. You do however, have a choice in this.

The impulse to defend, the “I will show you” attitude you precipitously displayed in your post is a mirror of social structures even in our contemporary world. Although they are less rigid than in our traditional past or ancient cultures, there are still many pre-established functions or roles that people readily identify with and which thus become part of the ego. This causes human interactions to become inauthentic, dehumanized, alienating. Those pre-established roles may give you a somewhat comforting sense of identity, but ultimately, you lose yourself in them. The functions people have in hierarchical organizations, such as the military, the church, a government institution, or large corporations, easily lend themselves to becoming role identities. Authentic human interactions become impossible when you lose yourself in a role. When you lose yourself in a role, you lose yourself in the mania of ego.

You know very little about me or what I am capable of and you don’t need to. Please try not to take any of this personally; you shouldn’t. I am only trying to help.

I am not in Oregon, but if you would like to test yourself against an MMA fighter in fighting ability or fitness, I think Matt Lindland from Team Quest in Portland would be willing to accommodate you.

Comment #549 - Posted by: Bean at July 11, 2008 9:11 PM

As a newbie to Corssfit -- first workout, actually -- I've got to say that I was amused at the Captain's comments, but disappointed at many of the responses.

For full disclosure, I am in the Navy, active duty, O5 and am responsible for a large number of Sailors and their personal/professional welfare. I'm trying crossfit, not because of the Navy times article or the Captain's comments (I've always tried to do what people tell me I can't do), but because of how well it's worked for my Sailors -- both officer and enlisted.

I appreciate the intensity of some of the responses, but too much emotion actually detracts from those arguments. The best way to fight disinformation is with information -- correct information. It works in the corporate world, the military, and LE. Responses of "bring it on" and "I dare" don't provide any evidence (imperical or otherwise) which benefits Crossfit or helps the "undecideds" choose whether they are going to try Crossfit or continue with their one-size-fits-all standard service-PT program.

Some comments remind me of the variety of muscle mags -- many of which have gone out of business in the last decade -- that claimed "mass is best" or "this way is the ONLY way to be fit" or "lose xx lbs the easy way." Crossfit CAN be backed up with evidence ... we see it every day!

Emotional arguments without evidence only strengthen his arguement that this is a flash in the pan and if his superiors do listen, it CAN have a negative impact. Anyone who thinks active duty cannot be ordered to NOT do a specific action (or workout) is wrong. Bunjee jumping and overseas moped riding are just two of many prohibited activities because of someone's "information" or "disinformation" (depending on your point of view).

Thank you Crossfit for a great workout, and thank you for helping make our Sailors healthy and fit. "I'm not worthy" yet, but I'll work on it! And, PLEASE, anyone sending the Captain an e-mail, please don't be emotional. Don't give him any more ammunition! "Just the facts, ma'am" will keep drawing Sailors (and others) to Crossfit, regardless of the Captain's personal opinion!

And for all of you deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan right now, THANK YOU and GOD BLESS!

Comment #550 - Posted by: El Tigre at July 11, 2008 9:12 PM

"...any program that names exercises after women is contrary to our Core Values." - Apparently Captain Picker is unfamiliar with sailors and the REAL Navy's values.

All I can say is that in the Marine Corps (the Men's Department of the Navy) Crossfit is finding a welcome home, especially with the new combat fitness test that's due to take effect this January. Thank-you Crossfit, and Semper Fi!

Comment #551 - Posted by: Jared Thompson at July 11, 2008 9:14 PM

I'll just say this...EVERYONE here has shown their true colors (good and bad). Many of those colors are unprofessional, vitriolic, and uncalled for.

Why is it that when one disagrees with someone else, the name calling starts, and the personal attacks begin? Why can't people simply state that they disagree with a point of view, outline why, and provide evidence? How many of you that emailed the CPT actually explained your point of view and offered advice instead of simply ranting?

Why did most of you attack a military member for his views? One person said he has the "right to respectfully disagree"...very true...but when did name calling become respectful? Comparing a Navy Captain to "cheap crack" is absolutely uncalled for and absolutely unprofessional. Many of the other posts absolutely disgust me, both as a 26 year veteran of Pararescue, a member of the military, and a fellow crossfitter.

Crossfit is NOT the end all and be all of a military mission nor is it the guarantor of national security...I practice it myself, but there is MUCH MORE that goes into a successful mission than just fitness...anyone involved in military operations knows this...I've worked with overweight personnel from EVERY SINGLE BRANCH of special operations (yes, SOF)...EVERY ONE...and they still got the mission done. Don't get me wrong, fitness is important, indeed vital for many Rates/MOS/AFSCs...especially functional fitness...but people, look deep inside and ask yourselves why you have to be so damn rude, so crude, and so unprofessional when responding to someone you don't agree with.

ANYONE can crossfit, no matter what the CDR says. Fitness is a PERSONAL responsibility and if you think that just because the Navy does "Navy" PT that many sailors are out of shape, you're off base. Each and every member of the military can and should augment the service's PT programs with additional physical training.

Folks...you're better than this...many of these posts, published out of context (and many in context), would cast a very bad light on crossfit and crossfitters...I'd ask that everyone step back, take a breather, and reflect a bit...then get back to it.

God speed and God bless America.


Comment #552 - Posted by: SMSgt James Thede at July 11, 2008 9:17 PM

Nicely said, SMSgt Thede and El Tigre.

To all active duty, reservists, LE, and FD, thanks for your service.

Comment #553 - Posted by: Robert Allmon at July 11, 2008 9:29 PM

Want to meet a real 0-6? AF Combat Controller Col. Ken "RZ" Rodriguez. The MAN is in incredible shape and leads from the front, not from the rear with the gear. Fitness is a state of mind, regardless of the branch, you have to want it to get it.

Comment #554 - Posted by: Me at July 11, 2008 10:16 PM

#561-SMSgt James Thede,

Concur 100%.

Comment #555 - Posted by: Gar at July 11, 2008 10:30 PM

For what it's worth,

I spent 5 yrs at a sea command and I picked up a few bits of knowledge.

1) For the most part, we do not have the finest Navy. We have a big Navy and a big budget. We have wicked good Spec Ops types but they spend more time training than they do fretting over core values. PA Rob, it is the pussification of the Navy that you are embracing that keeps our Navy at sub-finest levels.

2) There is no culture of fitness in the Navy outside of the order to PT 3 times a week. Only individuals who embrace their own fitness define this culture. I was the Asst CFC for my boat and I saw first hand, from SCPO to SR, blatant cheating of PT tests, bodyfat and height/weight measurements, etc. AND to make it worse, nobody seemed to care hat they were directly violating the core values of Honor and Commitment. That is what happens when things like PT scores are tied to things that are more important like paychecks and careers.

3) Anyone who is on base knows that the model of fitness used is based on the old garbage model of bodybuilding. To suggest that every contract of equipment, let alone the hearts and minds of bicep/chest die hards, be thrown out the door in favor of a program that a button pusher, paint shipper, or deck swabber will likely not need outside of their own health, I foresee as unlikely.

4) Coach, I disagree with you on saving lives, etc. when talking in reference to the Navy. I saw plenty of fat idiots who got the job done because it only required that buttons be pushed to execute Indigo Tasking. Those who need better fitness seem to have found it in your program. As a matter of personal responsibility then that is all one ought to require. I don't think that suggesting that 'do crossfit or die' will get anything accomplished. I'd think that 'do crossfit and be much less likely to die, more likely to get laid,' as a more favorable way to deliver the message as it combines my favorite two activities from when I was a sailor.

Comment #556 - Posted by: solly at July 11, 2008 10:33 PM

Look, I am prior Navy. Did a year of SEAL training until injuries finally took me out of the program. I then spent the next 4 miserable years on a ship trying to get back into the SEALs and finally gave up and got out. Honestly the fleet in the Navy is the most pathetic excuse for the armed forces in the world. I know I was embarassed to even admit that I was in it while on a ship. I have never in my life seen so many unfit and unhealthy people in one place at a time. Pathetic. Oh and the reason the Navy doesn't like naming workouts after women is because well lets be honest. They're sailors.... enough said. Well, I will crossfit til the day I die and sing it's praise to everyone who will listen. Keep up the good work everyone.

Comment #557 - Posted by: Dick Van Dyke at July 12, 2008 12:23 AM

I am a Fitness Enhancment Program coordinator for the Navy. The Navy still resorts to a 'taping' method in order to determin BMI, instead of water disposition, which is more accurate. Additionally, the Navy doesnt make exceptions for people who are naturally large but still have no problem passing the PRT with flying colors. Captain Picker, with all due respect Sir, we need to look inside of our service before we criticize the efforts of people who are trying to make our military a more fitness minded orginization.
I have friends who are nationally accredited personal trainers with keneisiology backgrounds, who speak volumes about CrossFit and its principles and methodology. Are the workouts challenging? Yes. Are the impossible? Initially it might seem that way, but eventually, no, they arent. There is scaling, there are substitutes, there are support groups for this kind of thing!
I am currently in Jalalabad, Afghanistan and have pushed CrossFit on every person who I see in the gym on consecutive days, who do not feel they are getting the results they want from their conventional workouts. The first time I did Cross Fit, I went blind in my right eye for 2 hours and I since then, I have been hooked. It is intense, and thats what makes it so special. We need to stop coddling the military... these are the people who are defending freedom and democracy around the world. Not a bunch of pansies, although it seems that way at times.
So, Captain, I propose to you that we look at our military standards and see if we are doing enough as the greatest Naval force on this planet. If we want to retain that title, we need to step our game up and reasses miltary physical readiness standards and stop letting people get by at the sheer minimum.
As one of my LT's says 'It's right there, you've gotta want it.'

Comment #558 - Posted by: eamon 27.m.170.5'8 at July 12, 2008 12:34 AM

Hahahahaha!! At least the Marines get something out of it: There's no better way to motivate Marines than to tell them about how some other branch of the service is too squeamish to follow their PT schedule.

Comment #559 - Posted by: Sammy W at July 12, 2008 3:02 AM

#565 - Solly: What about the USS Cole? The Pentagon? The USS Nimitz? When the $&!# hits the fan, our shipmates go from Sonar Techs, Culinary Specialists, and Yeoman to Warriors. Let's not forget the Individual Augmentee (IA) Program as well. Virtually any Sailor and any time can be selected (volun-told) to be deployed to Iraq, Afganistan, etc... as an IA.

To think that one's rating (job/MOS) does not specifically require fitness, therefore one doesn't need to be fit is short-sighted and potentially deadly.

Comment #560 - Posted by: Alex Europa at July 12, 2008 3:58 AM

SMSGT Thede and Apolloswabbie --

Outstanding posts, and thanks for your service.

I hope many here will take the opportunity to make reasoned arguments. After all, the ability to reason is why we need strong necks is to carry around these big brains ...


Comment #561 - Posted by: John Frazer M/42/185# at July 12, 2008 4:23 AM

BTW on chiropractors -- I found mine through the Active Release homepage. She was also mentioned in a Mike Mahler article.

While getting treatment for a long-nagging rotator cuff injury (pre-CF, for the record) we talked about various exercises. She was very concerned to make sure I was holding the bar low on my back and squatting deep enough. And for rehab exercises for my shoulder, she sent me a link to a T-Nation article!


Comment #562 - Posted by: John Frazer M/42/185# at July 12, 2008 4:27 AM

SMSgt James Thede,

Thank you for that. The degree to which people have reacted to the Captain's comment is surprising, and in some cases completely uncalled for. If Crossfit has any value, it will prove itself through action and results (and I believe that it does and it is). There will always be people who disagree; most of the time that disagreement warrants no response (e.g., who cares - you do your thing and I'll do mine), and other times that disagreement warrants a logical counter-argument. I am pretty sure that at no time the warranted response involves engaging in child-like web-forum flaming (as some here have done, not all). That is not the best way to represent Crossfit. Just my two pennies.

Comment #563 - Posted by: Andy at July 12, 2008 5:22 AM

I think the good Captain needs to do one of the girls. At that point he will realize there is nothing disrespectful about it.

Comment #564 - Posted by: chris at July 12, 2008 5:51 AM

It is obvious....as most have stated...that the good CAPT does not participate in daily WODs or any other Crossfit regime.

But being in the Navy and at a command full of special operators who are too proud to scale or stop and practice form before jumping in with two feet, I know where some of the comments are coming from.
We have guys that see the results of CrossFit in others and want to join in. They do so well above their skill and weight limitations and end up hurt. We have started a program 2-3 times a week to focus on technique and form as well as a kick-butt work out. Without that however, some of the CAPTs comments are validated by equally ignorant Crossfitters.

Comment #565 - Posted by: so at July 12, 2008 6:07 AM

SMSgt - thank you for your post! I became very angry and embarrassed as I was reading through some of the posts and you articulated those emotions for me much better than I could have.

Comment #566 - Posted by: so at July 12, 2008 6:14 AM

I find the captains comments unusual in light of my own personal experiences. The navy has a conditioning program for recruits who wish to enter the navy's special warfare units (SEALS, SWCC, EOD, ect) which they participate in prior to being shipped off to basic. The head of my group is a former SEAL and we do many crossfit style circut workouts in addition to the standard running, swimming,pushups and situps.

Comment #567 - Posted by: Jon at July 12, 2008 6:29 AM

Alex Europa Wrote:
"What about the USS Cole? The Pentagon? The USS Nimitz? When the $&!# hits the fan, our shipmates go from Sonar Techs, Culinary Specialists, and Yeoman to Warriors. Let's not forget the Individual Augmentee (IA) Program as well. Virtually any Sailor and any time can be selected (volun-told) to be deployed to Iraq, Afganistan, etc... as an IA.

To think that one's rating (job/MOS) does not specifically require fitness, therefore one doesn't need to be fit is short-sighted and potentially deadly."

First, the tragedies you just listed were all handled by those servicemembers WITHOUT crossfit. So either they did great short of elite fitness, or do you dare say they fell short because they were without elite fitness?

Second, I think my larger point is that personal responsibility is what is neccesary for the successful implementation of fitness whether it is concentration curls, 8 mile jogs, or Fran. If one were to be swifted away to Iraq then that individual would find it in their best interest to start exercising as if their life depended on it (which it does at that point).

I don't think we need more Cole's and 9/11's to convince the fat masses that make up the Navy to get out and do more, but poking and prodding them with incentives and threats, as has been the norm for a long while, isn't working either.

I sincerely believe that a Fleet Office of Physical Readiness comprised of higher enlisted and officer ranks be created and sent out about the fleet to control the testing and fitness evaluations of all servicemembers in an arbitrary and objective manner. Random drug testing has kept many sailors in check and weeded out the dirtbags; I say take the same concept and apply it to PT standards

Comment #568 - Posted by: solly at July 12, 2008 6:39 AM

PA Rob,

CrossFit has been around for decades. Where did you get 6 or 7 years - Mark Twight? He was the original source for that statement. He chose the launching of the website as the starting date for CrossFit as part of his failed and publicly exposed plan to sell CrossFit to the Navy as his work. (CrossFit was featured on television for its accomplishments 13 years ago.)

“You kindly note most breaks in form on your video’s (sic)…” If you’re only noticing the form breaks I point out you have no training skill. We don’t address 1% of the form breaks.

“… but this does not negate the fact that such speeds forced at such intensity’s (sic) run a tremendous risk.” This is a conjecture, not a fact. A conjecture perfectly add odds with mountains of clinical evidence.

“Fair enough but I don’t believe training should add to that stress. If this were the case then NFL football players should hit themselves in the head with a tack hammer to prepare for collisions.” This is stupid, isn’t it?

I could spend hours addressing the strawman you’ve created, but it would be a waste of my time and yours. Here’s the part that is interesting to me: “Also, as a side note to some of your members (esp Team members), I would be more than happy to introduce any of them to a brand of traditional high intensity that is safe in movement and high in returns.”

I will pay you to come out and teach your secret “brand of traditional high intensity.” If your method can match CrossFit’s increases in work capacity across broad time and modal domains while matching or improving on our low injury rate then we’ll make your secret program the way of things here. If you can match our outputs, I’ll make you rich and famous. You want to help the Teams? I've got dozens if not hundreds of SEAL/S willing to give test to your claim. They only do CrossFit because it works better than anything else they can find, and should something better come along that's where they'll go. It'll be exciting to see the secret program. I’m calling your bluff.

“Unless there is EKG evidence that shows a thruster has direct transfer to humping your pack 13 miles during SQT? I'm always open to research”. Why don’t you talk to the OIC and LPO at SQT? There they CrossFit and the performance gains and low injury rate are well known. The Canadian Forces and the SEAL Teams have ample, perfect, evidence that CrossFit transfers extremely well to extended rucks.

The injuries you’re predicting have not occurred. What has been documented by third party experimentation is that CrossFit dramatically reduces injuries vis a vis traditional training while radically improving performance.

CrossFit is closer to physical therapy than it is to being dangerous. We're fixing more people than we're breaking. That’s been demonstrated at the SEAL Teams, Colorado State Patrol, National Police Corps, San Jose PD, BUD/S & SQT, USMC’s School of Infantry West, Canadian Infantry School, Des Moines PD Academy, University of San Diego, and in scores of other institutional adoptions.

The beauty of conjecture is that it need not comport with fact and it need not offer testable proposition (you did on one single count and I accept the challenge). Conjecture not elevated to hypothesis and beyond demands the same the intellectual rigor as farting.

Every single time someone has had to implement CrossFit and compare the resultant adaptation and injury rate to business as usual, CrossFit has demonstrated a marked reduction in injury and spectacular increases in performance.

You’ve missed all of this? How?

Finally, Chris Spealer’s OHS is near perfect. I don’t think you know the movement.

Comment #569 - Posted by: Coach at July 12, 2008 7:18 AM

His last sentence just says it all. He clearly is worried that if this gets out "women" might overtake the world.

Comment #570 - Posted by: Jonathan at July 12, 2008 7:40 AM

Dick Van Dyke #566
"Look, I am prior Navy. Did a year of SEAL training until injuries finally took me out of the program. I then spent the next 4 miserable years on a ship trying to get back into the SEALs and finally gave up and got out. Honestly the fleet in the Navy is the most pathetic excuse for the armed forces in the world. I know I was embarassed to even admit that I was in it while on a ship. I have never in my life seen so many unfit and unhealthy people in one place at a time. Pathetic. Oh and the reason the Navy doesn't like naming workouts after women is because well lets be honest. They're sailors.... enough said. Well, I will crossfit til the day I die and sing it's praise to everyone who will listen. Keep up the good work everyone."

I am sorry for your "horrible" experience in the fleet. But calling it pathetic is a little much. I have seen my share of dirtbags and unfit men and women in all uniforms of the armed forces. I have seen plenty of young men who don't make it through BUD/S for one reason or another that come to fleet with chips on their shoulders. Don't characterize the fleet Navy based on your limited experience. 4 yours doesn't qualify you to pass judgment.

And why is it that you couldn't get back into BUD/S? I find that the advice the NSW Mentor, at my Recruiting Districts, gives to our SEAL deppers when they get ready to leave for RTC very helpful, "If you truly desire to be a SEAL you will do what ever it takes, never quit, and never stop trying."

I find your attitude toward the Navy disrespectful and disgusting.


Comment #571 - Posted by: Jim at July 12, 2008 8:09 AM

Rob F: I had no need to call him, he has his opinion and I have mine. Just like all the "runners" only I work with are afraid of Cross Fit because they might bulk up and become slower at running. Its an opionion/point of view, we live with different opinions every day why should Capt Picker's opinion carry more weight than my boss's, or my friend's or my girlfriend's. I have seen some amazing results in others and some minor ones in me, that's what counts.

There were some very good points on the subject today, to bad no one at CFHQ could produce the whole article so we could put the comments into some sort of context.

Comment #572 - Posted by: Marc V at July 12, 2008 8:18 AM

#483 MATTY K

what class are you going to? and which oso office are you coming out of?

Comment #573 - Posted by: FitMarine at July 12, 2008 8:22 AM

Well I suppose I could be upset by your post, picking mine apart piece by piece… We’ll call it even since you defended your name on your site to your people… and I predicted your response to mine.
As for my level of knowledge or calling my bluff… you can save the plane ticket. You’re a smart man and the caliber of training I am referring to has been around since the late 60’s at my best guess. I suppose I’m not one for gauging the timeframe of an organization? Oh well.

The real issue was professionalism and musculoskeletal injuries. Telling me who uses your program or who is affiliated does not constitute as empirical research. I’d say 13 years should be long enough to gather some factual information on reduced injury rates and increased performance rates among previously trained and untrained individuals… right?

As for the professionalism… i.e. “hot mama” video, the profanity, and some of the other video’s obsessed with the female backside… you just ran right by those didn’t you?
I have trained with master strength coaches, I have been in the business and I have spoken at clinics. I have not taken a program mainstream, produced a journal and made millions of dollars. But then that is the beauty of this country’s innovation and marketing opportunities. I think it is also a testament to what most people are willing to do in the way of training.

The “secret” training you so eloquently referred to as I said has been around for many, many decades. Any idiot personal trainer can make someone throw up and not know a thing about the metabolic pathways! You can achieve your results through fast or slow speeds of movement and if you don’t believe me then maybe you can use your plane ticket to visit me. I seriously would not believe you have no idea what I am referring… or maybe you should call Dan Riely and figure it out?

My objective was to support the Captain. And yes the military by and large does not have a solid training program for the larger part. And YES most Navy guys are so out of shape it is disgusting.
That aside, peer reviewed empirical researched, produced through an objective third party displaying your results are achieved in the absence of injury over a long period of time is necessary. Sorry the CF journal does not count as a credible source for this information.
Oh and I also noticed you side stepped the comment on gymnastics injury rates! Keep pick’n em apart there coach and thanks for educating all us dumb folk who have silly degree’s and spend decades doing this stuff!
Your people read what you want them to read and my people read what you want your people to read. Thanks!

Comment #574 - Posted by: PA_Rob at July 12, 2008 8:38 AM

Great video/picture as usual. Great effort in the deadlift.

On another note: Nicole has great legs, and particular, rather nice gluteus maximus musculature, and rather fetching biceps femoris/hamstrings!

Yep, CrossFit girls rock.

Comment #575 - Posted by: David at July 12, 2008 9:06 AM

Not all Naval units/commands are the same. I am proud to have been selected to train EOD Mobile Unit 11 at Whidbey Island NAS. CrossFit training and its benefits is so important to the unit, that when they recently deployed 3 teams, they purchased equipment for each team to take with them to continue their CF training during deployment.

We opened Mt. Baker CrossFit Whidbey Island on April 1st. The majority of our over 100 new members are Navy from various units and every day they invite more and more of their friends to join us.

Comment #576 - Posted by: Skip Chase at July 12, 2008 9:32 AM

Didn't take a rest day, did Fran as RXed instead:

EE: 6:37
MH: 11:20

Comment #577 - Posted by: EE at July 12, 2008 9:42 AM

Mr. Blauer

Thanks for the positive response. I also sent you an email in regards to a situation you may be able to help me with. Thanks again and keep up the great work.


Comment #578 - Posted by: SteveSRT at July 12, 2008 10:39 AM

"Additionally, any program that
names exercises after women is contrary to our Core Values."

I've been thinking about this statement. Its silly. Just about every Navy guy here who has posted has stated such. Maybe I'm crazy, but maybe El Capitan intended it as tongue-in-cheek. Very possible - you neeeever know.

Comment #579 - Posted by: Pleepleeus at July 12, 2008 10:43 AM

Coach said:

"How many years distinguish (sic) service compensate for careless, reckless, false comments that directly endangers (sic) sailor's/soldier's lives?"

Is there a single shred of evidence to support this?

Could this be a...conjecture? Or does this not even rise to the level of conjecture, but rather "careless, reckless, and false"?

Comment #580 - Posted by: Milan at July 12, 2008 11:21 AM

"There's a safer way of doing this for our Sailors" says CAPT Picker. What's safe about combat? Marines have a saying too, "Train like you fight."

Crossfit done right safely prepares us for combat. I can recall many injuries to Marines doing "approved" physical training because they failed to stretch, warm-up, etc... I suppose this is just another example of how senior members of the armed forces attempt to "legislate" around personal accountability to make up for their own failure to delegate and unwillingness to lead by example.

Don't worry though folks, we're not all weak, your safe as long as there's a Marine Corps.

Comment #581 - Posted by: Maj Marine at July 12, 2008 12:06 PM

One other thing -
What does naming exercises after women have to do with core values? I take it that it would be okay if it was named after a man?
Keep it up Crossfit! You strengthen our "core" way more than guys like CAPT Picker ever will.

Comment #582 - Posted by: Maj Marine at July 12, 2008 12:22 PM

"Maybe we should call rest days Capt. Picker's?"

Comment #337 - Posted by: Bill

HAHA i agree. Im currently in the NAVY stationed in Virginia. . training for BUD/S (currently waiting on my orders). My Training partner(leaving for SWCC next week) and I have been using XFIT for over a year now and we have never been so ready. Air Force Gym at Langley have a Xfit room I LOVE LANGLEY FOR THE XFIT ROOM.


Comment #583 - Posted by: Abrego The FishTank at July 12, 2008 12:26 PM

My replies to Capt Jack (#458)

No comment on Core values arguement of my fellow Navy Captain, and he in no way defended or endorsed the Navy PRT program. The Navy PRT program is a measuring tool not a workout, but that is not Captain Picker's point.

My reply: You can't say anything because you know he was out of line, core values or no.

His point, and it is spot on about CF is; "Several SMEs in the sports medicine field (military & civilian) have
addressed a concern that the program has the potential for causing an
increased incidence of musculoskeletal injuries and even muscle
breakdown (rhabdomyoloysis) and therefore is not supported by CPPD."

My reply: Oh, really? And you know this because these SMDs have tried CrossFit and researched it? For every one of those "SMD's" you can find 10-20 people who do CrossFit and stand behind because it keeps them FIT.

Reps of Oly lifts done in sloppy style are an ortho issue waiting to happen. The embrace of rhabdo and pukie is also a legit criticism. If you disagree, that is your call. As an open and frequent critic of CF, i have always at least given due respect for the respect you normally give the military. I seems that applies only to the military who agrees with you completely.

My reply: You are picking on one fraction of the CrossFit program, the Oly lifts. How do you know that people can't do these lifts properly? According to the videos, I see otherwise. Besides, no good coach would allow anyone who has poor form to try a lift with any amount of load on the bar until the form is correct. I don't even think it is that we only agree with people who agree with us. If you would tell the truth about your intentions, like, "We understand that CrossFit brings results but we are not open-minded enough to implement it because we feel we don't need a program like it. The Navy is just fine without it." We would respond with, "agreed. CrossFit isn't for everyone."

Many of us do not agree with the CF philosophy or the Navy PRT program, and can still blow away the PRT. Because CPPD doesn't support your program, you come unglued?

My reply: OH, really? Well I tell you what. We will have a group of crossfitters do the PRT and then you can have your superstars who "blow away" the PRT, do the filthy fifty. We will see what happens.

Maybe all your workouts should be named after women...

My reply: That's fine. put down women, but remember this, there is a 14 year old girl who just competed in the games who is more fit than some of your finest. Remember that when you float through the caribbean and Hurricane Kallista hits.

Comment #584 - Posted by: Ricardo at July 12, 2008 1:15 PM

I meant SME's. They might as well be SMD's.

Comment #585 - Posted by: Ricardo at July 12, 2008 1:19 PM

Interesting. Yet hypocritical. Check out this website, http://www.navyseals.com/crossfit-workout-day . Funny. The Navy Seals CrossFit WODS. Some of them are like CrossFit on steroids.

Comment #586 - Posted by: Mark Perna at July 12, 2008 1:21 PM


I'm sorry for your confusion. It was a hypothetical question, not a statement of fact. Please, tell me how you missed that.

How many years of distinguished service compensate for careless, reckless, false comments that directly endanger sailor's/soldier's lives? I believe that a distinguished career or reputation can be damaged in an instant.

I also believe that the Captain's comments were careless, reckless and false - even misogynist. If CrossFit truly does what the mil/LEO units who have adopted it claim and fitness is important to combat then the Captain's words are reprehensible.

To support the Captain's statements you have to demonstrate what is wrong in the CrossFit implementation stats and analysis (truly it is experimental data) or show that PT isn't combat relevant. No one here in nearly 600 comments has done either. Our critics, like PA Rob, don't even seem to know of our adoption and success in the very realm where he proposes application and testing, e.g., SQT. We offer solid data from third parties, even commercial rivals, and our critics offer credentials and speculation. Is that clear?

The acid test for reducing combat casualties through PT may be far off. But if you believe that fitness improves survivability then impeding or denigrating a program that has been shown to be uniquely effective, efficient, and safe in advancing work capacity (fitness) will cost lives.

Now to answer your second and third questions, though I suspect they're entirely rhetorical and not the fruit of serious thought: you cannot give me a definition of reckless, careless, or false that wouldn't apply to the Captain's statements. CrossFit's efficacy, safety, and efficiency are empirically substantiated. The application of fitness to survivability, combat readiness, and operational success is indeed conjecture though it seems to be agreed upon by all that fitness is important to those ends.

What part of this do you have a problem with? CrossFit's efficacy, efficiency, and safety? The importance of fitness to combat survivability and success?

Hope that helps. Sorry about the typo's this is tough on the Blackberry.

Comment #587 - Posted by: Coach at July 12, 2008 1:53 PM

In #522 Apolloswabbie wrote:

"The Navy in general, individual officers and Sailors excepted, does not care about fitness. Empirically, the marginal contribution in fitness to most of the Navy's mission is small. That is to say, return on investment for making your unit fit is not tangible, particularly when using traditional methods. That's neither a defense or a justification - just my observation. In this way, the Teams are totally different from our other operational units."

Paul, when you say "empirically" which observations and experiences are you referring to? On what basis are you confident that the returns on improved fitness are not tangible with respect to increased capacity to execute the mission? If you think about it more closely, I suspect you'd conclude that the ROI for improved fitness in the Teams versus other operational units is a difference of degree, not kind.

You own a piece of the Navy's mission. How is your personal experiment going? Your physical work capacity has increased enormously over this time last year. (I've got some CF Games photos for you, btw.) Has your improved fitness lead to any tangible improvements in your ability to execute your duties?

Comment #588 - Posted by: Brian Mulvaney at July 12, 2008 1:54 PM

Mark Pena,

It's important to note that those workouts are designed for selection not operational preparedness. We recognize the difference and have no problem tailoring for either.

Comment #589 - Posted by: Coach at July 12, 2008 1:55 PM

Forgive me if I'm wrong but didn't the Navy's of the world have a long tradition of naming ships after women? Hurricanes? Cars? Wisdom in the Bible? I'm sure I'm forgetting other things that are extremely powerful and not easily understood that we words like "She" to reference. Don't forget the statue of her that is a National symbol of Liberty!

Comment #590 - Posted by: CenterHorse at July 12, 2008 2:07 PM

Lots o’ trouble downloading the highlights video (waiting and waiting). Wish it was on youtube.

Comment #591 - Posted by: Bill Burcham at July 12, 2008 2:13 PM

Bill, drop me a line at brian@crossfit.com with your contact info. I'd like to troubleshoot your download issue. I'm looking at the video servers right now and they'll all give you the video as fast as you can pull it. It's a 30ish MB file. Unless you are on dial up, it should be coming to you pretty quickly.

Comment #592 - Posted by: Brian Mulvaney at July 12, 2008 2:25 PM

"How many years of distinguished service compensate for careless, reckless, false comments that directly endanger sailor's/soldier's lives? I believe that a distinguished career or reputation can be damaged in an instant."

Way over the top, Coach. A sniper's bullet, a mine or an RPG has no bearing on fitness. To claim the questioning of the internet workout site, crossfit, is a direct danger to the live's of those who serve, is disgusting.

Millions have died fighting for this country. Your fitness program will never change that. Never saw anyone die, that a better Fran time would have saved.

Comment #593 - Posted by: Old Vet at July 12, 2008 3:11 PM

When did CrossFit went from being a supplemental GPP program for one's sport to being a ''sport''?

Comment #594 - Posted by: Huh? at July 12, 2008 3:17 PM

It never was GPP for sport. Never. The application and it's successes in application belong entirely to the athletes themselves.

This was fitness for fitness sake, always has been. Thus "the sport of fitness".

Old Vet,
I don't think you're following the flow of the conversation. How old are you?

Do you think that I said that CrossFit would render a soldier bullet proof? I hope not.

Could fitness impact a soldiers ability under load of kit to take cover form sniper fire? Could fatigue render a soldier disoriented enough to miss an insurgent with RPG? Of course.

Does fitness impact health, morale, productivity, absenteeism, and injury? It's been proven.

I think the most important part of fitness re. combat prep is mental not physical, by the way, but that's not a conversation being had here.

You're confused, but I thank you for your service.

Comment #595 - Posted by: Coach at July 12, 2008 3:40 PM

PA Rob #583,

<<As for the professionalism… i.e. “hot mama” video, the profanity, and some of the other video’s obsessed with the female backside… you just ran right by those didn’t you?

Yeah, prudery and disgust at the female anatomy are not part of my composition. Quite the contrary, I’m rather enamored with women. Don’t tell me you don’t like beer or tacos either?!?! BTW, we never did a "hot mama" video, but you're showing promise here.

<<I have trained with master strength coaches, I have been in the business and I have spoken at clinics. I have not taken a program mainstream, produced a journal and made millions of dollars. But then that is the beauty of this country’s innovation and marketing opportunities. I think it is also a testament to what most people are willing to do in the way of training.

Agreed. You’ve also not advanced the art and science of human performance. If you had, you’d find it as easy to market and sell, as have I. Then you’d be giving clinics as well as attending and you’d not be able to write the phrase “master strength coach” without laughing.

<<The “secret” training you so eloquently referred to as I said has been around for many, many decades. Any idiot personal trainer can make someone throw up and not know a thing about the metabolic pathways! You can achieve your results through fast or slow speeds of movement and if you don’t believe me then maybe you can use your plane ticket to visit me. I seriously would not believe you have no idea what I am referring… or maybe you should call Dan Riely and figure it out?

Yeah, but did you know that "any idiot" exercise physiologist can have some modicum of understanding of metabolic pathways (never the understanding of a biochemist, however.) and still not know how to squat, or how to prepare someone for combat or soccer. Even the smart ones don't know how.

I don’t need to call Dan Riley to tell you that his machined based NFL strength program isn’t going to compare to CF for delivering increased work capacity across broad time and modal domains. It couldn’t possibly; it’s designed to produce a narrow bandwidth adaptation in modality and time. Try again.

<<That aside, peer reviewed empirical researched, produced through an objective third party displaying your results are achieved in the absence of injury over a long period of time is necessary. Sorry the CF journal does not count as a credible source for this information.

Did you know that “peer review” has no place in the scientific method? That scientific consensus taking is about belief, not science? I’m reminded of the early days of our nutrition debates. We got a group from Tufts to finally admit that controlled carbohydrate intake remedied or ameliorated all the specific ills and symptoms of metabolic derangement and then suddenly the argument shifted to an immediately untestable proposition offered as an aphorism – “Is it possible”, we were asked, “that the candle that burns twice as bright burns half as long?” We had to laugh. The debate was clearly over. So here we have it. I can demonstrate solid data that shows that CrossFit mitigates preexisting conditions rather than causing new injuries. We’ve shown it at BUD/S, at SQT, at Colorado State Patrol, and within scores of other institutions. I cannot prove that someday all CrossFitters won’t drop dead from CrossFitting. I also know that that is neither a logical nor scientific criticism, until supported by data.

<<Oh and I also noticed you side stepped the comment on gymnastics injury rates! Keep pick’n em apart there coach and thanks for educating all us dumb folk who have silly degree’s and spend decades doing this stuff!

You’re right I also sidestepped your gymnastics point. I whole-heartedly agree with your assessment of the injury rate of competitive sport gymnastics. I was a competitive gymnast. More importantly I know how utterly irrelevant sport gymnastics injuries are to what we’re doing at CrossFit. I was embarrassed that you didn’t, but I don’t think you understand CrossFit or gymnastics.

<<Your people read what you want them to read and my people read what you want your people to read. Thanks!

This has nothing to do with reading. It’s about measuring work capacity across broad time and modal domains. It’s about first defining fitness and then measuring it.

Finally, I have data. You have degrees and conjecture perfectly at odds with fact. I’m doing science; you are not.

Comment #596 - Posted by: Coach at July 12, 2008 4:08 PM

This is the meat of Old Vet's post that was conveniently ignored, and is entirely in line with the flow:

"Way over the top, Coach. A sniper's bullet, a mine or an RPG has no bearing on fitness. To claim the questioning of the internet workout site, crossfit, is a direct danger to the live's of those who serve, is disgusting."

The Captain does not say "Don't work out." He wrongly concludes that Crossfit has a higher risk of injury, BUT, he clearly states there are SAFER ways to get a high intensity workout. The Captain CLEARLY has his troops in mind, and CLEARLY endorses fitness.

The Captain's 3-4 sentence commentary on Crossfit can be summarized as: Subject matter experts in the field, both military and civilian, tell me it can be too dangerous, so I don't recommend it. Try a safer high entensity workout regimine.

Getting together some SME's with a clearer picture and presenting that to the Captain may get you the retraction you want. Getting a bunch of angry internet posters together to send him eMails calling him a fat, lazy, douchebag, and questioning his commitment to the nation and his troops aint gonna get you Jack S##t.

Comment #597 - Posted by: Pleepleeus at July 12, 2008 4:17 PM

Actually, CrossFit changed my life. I'm a true believer.

My only problem is that so many true believers (as evidenced here) think that an appropriate response to fairly measured criticism is juvenile ad hominem and silly "challenges."

In fact, I agree that fitness impacts every activity that every human engages in--I just don't think it helps to come completely unhinged at every critical word.

I thought your comments were way over the top and completely out of proportion to the criticism. That said, I thank you for what you're doing.

Comment #598 - Posted by: Milan at July 12, 2008 4:26 PM

The problem is that you will always have someone who is a disbeliever. This time it happens to be a Navy CAPT of some consequence who supports "bodies in motion" whatever that is.

The way to bring these people in is not through hostility and name calling. Those of us who crossfit know it works. I came in to crossfit last april with a jacked up knee and a gut. This morning the new 20lb lighter version of me ran down all but one of a 30+ person LEO physical fitness test. If the CAPT is a honest man i am sure that over time he may change his mind and even admit to it. However politics the way they are and the permanent way that quotes are, i think that is something he will just let die vice standing in front of the mic and changing his song.

In the end, you know it works, i know it works, hell anyone who has ever met a crossfitter, especially a before and after crossfitter knows it works. The visual changes of myself alone has brought in more than a dozen people from my work in to our gym. That is what matters. I don't hear people saying "wow, those isolation 3 sets of 10 bicep curls got you JACKED!" very often. But a crossfitter, planted in to a community of motivated (but often misguided in terms of training.... hey it happens) people will make them ask serious questions.

So, the program is on fire, it's proven, and backed by god knows how many tough as nails men and women who used to be two fisted food blisters. On top of that, there is another wave (even bigger i am willing to bet) who has read the Navy and Marine Corps times, has driven by a gym, or watched a friend reinvent them self and now has a seed planted. We don't need to worry about the good Capt. There never will be a standing order prohibiting us from crossfitting, crossfit gyms will never be put on the restricted lists.
We got the god damn SOI at our backs, who cares about this Capt and his "Bodies in motion" whatever the hell that is.

Comment #599 - Posted by: Erik_OakHarbor at July 12, 2008 6:12 PM

I think there is a high level of elitism going on here. If everyone in the Navy did Crossfit, they would all be studs right? Of course there wouldn't be injuries for those in the bottom rung of the fitness ladder, that would make too much sense. Wouldn't it be great to have a Navy fitness program that helped individuals get into shape for each physical readiness test? Something called maybe, a "return to fitness" program? For the Navy to completely ignore Crossfit is fine, but for commands that can allocate the MWR resources for a Crossfit gym is great and is occuring fleet wide. For anyone that wants to bitch about not having the equipment, go out into town and join a crossfit gym, or spend the money with the good money we get paid on some basic necessities, like the site shows you how to do. This is all retarded, if someone wants to do crossfit, they will do it regardless if the Navy will actually build crossfit gyms at each base. I do the WOD with a group of guys at our gym all the time, with no problems, and two of the guys are the freaking fitness instructors. Peace out, I'm gonna go bust out a WOD.

Comment #600 - Posted by: Pig at July 12, 2008 8:09 PM


Retarding the physical development of soldiers whether done for political reasons or ignorance is dangerous. That is what the Captain's warning about CrossFit had the potential to do.

His bodies in motion approach to fitness will deliver less than a third of the physical capacity that CF will (work capacity measured across broad time and modal domains). He's advocating reducing the potential horsepower of the chassis for all weapon systems (the human body) by 60%. If he advocated this for ships he'd be relieved of duty.

Captains Picker's conversion is of minimal consequence. Setting the record straight is the goal. That's been done.

Pleepeeus, you don't get it because you don't understand what the difference is between CrossFit and the known/available alternatives. You don't understand the potential for feedback and amplification of this absurd message if left unchecked. You don't understand the threat Captain Picker's words have on nascent programs and implementations under way and in proposal. This is not about Captain Picker or me.

Comment #601 - Posted by: Coach at July 12, 2008 8:57 PM

Post 547 PA Rob

You too are entitled to your opinion BUT I tire greatly of those that tell us we cannot swear, drink, look at girly mags or wear less than dockers, button down collar, dress shoes and a belt else we be seen as horribly unprofessional. I am a professional Marine for almost 20 years now, with just a few combat tours under my belt, and I love swearing, drinking a few beers and think females are damn nice to look at, hell I even married one! (No, she is not equal to me...she is far superior, physically, emotionally, intellectually, spriritually and mentally than I)The women of CF are physically incredible humans, female or not, but I do not think it wrong to admire them for thier feminine charms as well. Combat arms, in any branch of the service is rough and brutal...it should be afterall our job requires that of us. With that comes a hardnosed, rough approach to all things in life. I guess you know this as you did say you had a combat tour. Our world is black and white not one of shades of gray that many want to turn it into. The PC garbage makes me sick. If you chose not to swear good on ya but kindly do not tell those of us who walk a different path that we are less because of it. If an instructor swears in class he has my attention and I understand where he is coming from. I would venture to say that most CF people have a bit of a thick skin to swearing. Now that I am done mumbling, ranting, raving, grunting and trying to communicate with wild arm gestures and bodily noises I shall grab my club and trudge off to the nearest tar pit.

Comment #602 - Posted by: William Carroccia at July 12, 2008 9:45 PM

Old Vet,

Save lives it does my friend, in both the military and law enforcement arenas. One of the most significant killers of our combat wounded is shock. Shock is at its essence, tissue hypoxia (inadequate tissue perfusion).

Among the significant measures of life threatening shock is the body's base excess. This relates directly to cell metabolism and the individual's ability to compensate in long periods of shock. The longer you are in shock, the less likely you are to survive the acid imbalance, regardless of how much blood product/I.V. fluids you receive later.

That ties incredibly to the improved lactate threshold that CrossFit provides, or more accurately, that CrossFit provides better than any other method.

That a local SWAT officer, hitting the WODs exclusively and hard for the last six months, could survive an M-4 round to the head recently, (from less than 25 feet) along with a 35-40 minute ambulance ride to a trauma center and while losing blood from an unreachable intracranial wound is an awesome testimony to this.

Add to that the fact that this young man's heart rate (per the recorded monitor) never went over 62 beats per minute and you easily understand why Marines and Corpsmen will drive an hour to workout at many So CA affiliates.

Yet their Navy won’t provide it for the greater number of them, even though it costs so much less, can be infinitely scaled and results in less injuries. That’s what will change.

Thanks for your service.

Steve S. HMC (DV/PJ/FMF) USNR, Ret.

Comment #603 - Posted by: Steve S. at July 12, 2008 10:10 PM

For those of us with longer Navy memories, recall the "new, improved" PRT instruction that came out in the late 1990s. Delayed by over a year, needing only one admiral's signature. Said admiral wouldn't sign the instruction because he knew he was way, way out of its standards. No big deal, every four years we get a new PRT instruction, never an improvement on the old one, but needed to justify the end-of-tour award given to some gym-rat staffer at BUPERS.

As for the women, well, let's all be honest. PRT and weight standards in the Navy are absurd, and have been driven for nearly three decades by the presence of women who, entering the service, are entirely too weak to perform to any of the old standards. Everyday I walk past female troopers who are grossly obese, yet they meet Navy standards. At the same time, I know male troopers who are struggling to meet weight standards despite their acing the run/sit-up/push-up tests and maintaining a sharp, professional military bearing. It's BS hypocrisy, and everyone knows it.

Is it against core values to name workouts after women? Not if those workouts kick your a** and make you more fit sailor. And as for the hypocrisy discussed above, a quick browse through the forum shows that women can meet and exceed real physical fitness standards if they are expected to and trained to. The Navy, regrettably my beloved service, is not capable of doing either. The Marines, by contrast, do expect and train their female marines to meet serious PT standards. At times like this the old joke about the Marines being part of the Department of the Navy ("Yeah, the men's department" replies the Marine) ring all too true.

Comment #604 - Posted by: Mr G at July 13, 2008 12:02 AM

Coach, all I know about what the Captain advocates is from the 3-4 sentence opinion you excerpted from an article no one else seems to be able to find. From those 3-4 sentences, I can and did conclude he advocates high entensity workouts, but does not endorse Crossfit. Injured sailors stay dockside afterall. Anything else you say I don't understand about his position, is so because you have conveniently not included any other documentation or information about any other aspect of his position. If you're going to post things for the Crossfit community to discuss, post all the information.
The only thing I or anyone can know from the 3-4 sentences you published, is the Captain doesn't endorse Crossfit because he thinks its too risky. That is it. One can infer that things are going on behind the scenes that no one else is privy to, making this seem like more of a personal vendetta against the Captain, with the Crossfit community being used as stooges to demonize someone none of us knows.

Comment #605 - Posted by: Pleepleeus at July 13, 2008 12:42 AM


Perhaps asking you directly will get the response that I beleive Pleepleeus and I desire: POST THE ENTIRE ARTICLE. We would all like to put his comments into some sort of context because it is obvious that he didn't talk about Cross Fit through what ever article you took the quote from. And if you believe that calling into question a person's intergity, dedication, patriotism, manhood are vaild tools to bring about a change in opinion (as many of the posters here have indicated on the blog and in apparent emails to CAPT Picker) then you have a misguided methodolgy of change.

I thank you for a great workout program and I enjoy it immensely. I just won't be convincining people to join me by belittling them.

Comment #606 - Posted by: Marc V at July 13, 2008 6:14 AM

majority of the people who responded to this made just as much of an ass of themselves as did the skipper.

and thank god for those folks who figured out that this was more about how the navy sucks more than anything else... for a minute there i thought the message was lost, wait.. what was the message again.

if indeed the goal is to effect change in the military fitness culture then the job you are doing is fine. word of mouth and this website are working extremely well. from what i understand, the army and marine corps are already starting to migrate towards what you preach. hell, i also recently saw and air force times that hinted at the same thing. the necessity for a more advanced level of fitness in the military is paramout, we can all agree on that.

however, the tone of this discussion is sad. saw a few JO's out there, good on ya for callin the captain out... if it makes you feel any better, both of you are the reason i don't want to go officer.

to me it seems a little counter productive to advocate a product and why it should be adopted by the military, and in the same breath tell a captain that he's an idiot. if it doesn't work for an 0-2 it probably won't work for you, granted they might get in a little more trouble.

and while all of that is going on, i also think it might be a little selfish for everybody all of a sudden to know exactly what's best for "soldiers". as if us being in the military negates our decision making ability and we need the "grown ups" to speak for us. especially in this context. might not have been what #615 meant, but it's belittling.

and let the dude be, i guarantee that cat has bigger fish to fry.

Comment #607 - Posted by: eff at July 13, 2008 7:43 AM

So I am reading this a few days late. I'll let you have your opinions... but I can't believe he said that naming something after a woman is against the Navy's core values. Wow. I can fiy for my country, but my vagina still means I'm less than. Ouch. I hope that guy has a crappy day.

Comment #608 - Posted by: Leslie Ap at July 13, 2008 8:03 AM

So I was walking down my local Mainstreet Usa yesterday, fixated fully on a particular architectural feature of our local landscape, and managed to run into, not the front, but the side of a Road Closed sign.

If I had been walking the way I used to, it would have hurt, and may have knocked me over. As it was, it left a stain on my white shirt, but otherwise was not an issue.

Having run literally head-on into any number of objects in my life, I have developed a style of walking which--when my body is confronted with an object--it articulates around it, so that as a system I can contain and manage that shock.

After Moshe Feldenkrais, I label this capacity "reversibility". Thought systems, too, can be reversible.

In this current debate, we have not as yet (I suspect, although I have not read all the comments due to time constraints) defined what each of us mean by "CrossFit". It seems likely that our good Captain means the posted daily WOD. This is a program that is unscaled, unmodified, and which presumes the use of some combination of self education, prudence, and caution.

But this is only a part of what is intended by "CrossFit". In my own process of developing useful heuristics, one analogy that came to mind was the bullet and the cloud. If we define CrossFit narrowly, rigidly, and irreversibly, then adopting "CrossFit" becomes and all or nothing, take it or leave it proposition. It is a dense, compact, high velocity object that is what it is.

If, however, we expand it as a sort of exploratory heuristic, we can see that scaling and personalization happens invariably in all local implementations of this protocol. We see that CrossFit is the combination of functionality, variation, and intensity. We see that the full implementation of it includes a number of specific and ideosyncratic movements--like thrusters and wallball--as well as common movements like deadlifts inserted into workouts in unique ways.

I would argue that in this case, with respect to this issue, the goal is improvement. We want to move the Navy (and all other Armed Services branches, and eventually all people period who care about their health) towards something that looks more like CrossFit.

What they are doing now is not realistically going to reduce the risks of repetetive use injury, back problems, cardiovascular disease, and of course a lack of capacity to do their jobs at the limit of potential challenges.

To be deployed Fleet wide, I think certain things need to be taken into consideration. One is that I think the principles are "severable", by which I mean that while each has merit, their relative merit can be rank ordered. Functionality, to me, is more important than intensity, which in turn is more important than variation.

In turn, functionality, to me, is at a bare minimum deadlifting, pressing, running, and doing pullups (or ring rows if the person is not up to pullups).

By a process of logical development like that, I think the reactive surface we call "CrossFit" might better approach the demands of the Navy, as seen from the perspective of those whose job it is to understand and then implement those demands.

Hopefully that makes sense. I have work to do, regrettably.

Comment #609 - Posted by: Barry Cooper at July 13, 2008 9:49 AM

9 rounds*

Comment #610 - Posted by: Mason at July 13, 2008 10:17 AM

At Level 1 Cert I was told that the wod's were named after Hurricanes and hero's. Many hurricanes have female names. The Capt obviously did not do his homework.

Comment #611 - Posted by: R Tellez at July 13, 2008 10:29 AM

My apologies to Capt. Picker for my sophomoric and juvenile comment about Capt. Picker's name. Okay, I offended somebody enough to call my office with threatening and emotional tones. I am wrong for making fun of somebodies name. (# Post Removed)
As a side note, I am from a military family and my grandfather served with JFK (yes, the president) during WWII in the Navy. I have all the respect and honor towards the military and those who serve(d). I have no problem with Capt. Picker and I was wrong for for my parenthesized name calling. Sorry, this is the end of my apology, now I'm getting back on my soapbox for anyone who cares.

All the rest of my comments and opinions stand as stated #433. BTW: Capt. Picker is getting hammered on this comment board (see #56,#67, #87, #207, etc.), for statements he made in a published journal. I would like to think we all still have the right to free speech and our own opinions in this country without fear of physical threat, but I feel that too is threatened by liberalism and political correctness and homogenization of our "Pop American Culture". That people outside of CF even care about what is written here is encouragement for us CF'ers to keep Crossfit going and inspire another couch potato to get off their duff. If more people did anything physical, let alone Crossfit, we might have a fitter and healthier nation. Too many stuff their face with junk food while watching junk tv or junk internet all the while feeding their primal brain. When their body starts to break down they look for some magic pill or procedure to undo the years of poor living. I see it all the time in my office. People want to be spoon fed lies about their health, about exercise and about personal responsibility (there is none anymore). So those of us doing are getting verbal abuse lobed at us from those who sit, judge and take up space and air from those who would better use it.
Look at Dr. Sears who is so revered by Crossfit aficionados. Dr. Sears was all but maligned and ostracized from the medical establishment because of his stance on nutrition. He isn't the first or the last to be attacked by "The Establishment" for contrariety views.

Comment #612 - Posted by: Dr. D at July 13, 2008 10:39 AM

One issue is that Capt. Picker, by voicing uninformed opinions from a position of power and influence, threatens to thwart the largely bottom-up, voluntary adoption of crossfit methods by persons in the surface-line navy.

Another issue; Capt. Picker undoubtedly intimately familiar with shipboard life and the unique demands and sacrifices that it demands of those who deploy for 6-9 months at a time on surface ships (everything is much worse for subs). So we have a guy whose ill-informed about fitness but well-informed about shipboard life. In reading alot of these comments, I conclude that many suffer from the converse problem. They are well-informed about fitness but ill-informed about the unique challenges of spending 90 days straight under water.

There are many ways that one finds themselves at the "tip of the spear". Volunteering to subject oneself to watchstanding 6 hours on 6 hours off while sharing a bunk in order to keep a boomer on station is one way that may not have occurred to everyone out there. The fact is that the military requires missions that often take your health away. Most dramatically, death in a firefight. Less dramatically, the slow loss of health that comes from spending 10 years on boomer subs. I think we should all acknowledge that there are many "fat" CPOs out there who have paid a great sacrifice to keep us save. I served with one such "fat" CPO - who served in the battle of Okinawa and had a front row seat watching Kamakize pilots crashing into ships around him. He was fortunate. This was a gentleman who served unbroken sea duty for 30 years. He was fat and at 55 years old looked like he was 80. Nonetheless, I honor him and the service he provided to this nation. He may not have been physically fit but he was a paragon of moral,ethical, fitness.

The great tradgedy in all of this is that Crossfit is uniquely suited to help arrest and mitigate the toll that a career at sea takes on those worthy souls who have signed up for such a sacrifice; and that's why Capt. Picker's comments are so egregious.

Comment #613 - Posted by: Mark Brinton at July 13, 2008 11:46 AM

Dr. D - I reread your post #433 and found nothing wrong with it. It made perfect sense. Its a position based on sound reasoning. Do it right, and its safe. That's the truth. I take issue with this sentence form your last post:

"So those of us doing are getting verbal abuse lobed at us from those who sit, judge and take up space and air from those who would better use it."

That's just it, the Captain didn't lob any verbal abuse. The "He started it" defense belongs on the playground with the children who created it. All he said was, to paraphrase, "Experts say its too risky, so I don't endorse it." Its a sound position, ultimately wrong, but sound nonetheless, based on input from so-called experts.

The response the Captain got from fellow Crossfitters is embarrassing, and made every one of us look like mentally challenged buffoons. I respect and admire the Coach immensely, but not in this. This has been nothing more than an internet lynching for a made-up crime.

Comment #614 - Posted by: Pleepleeus at July 13, 2008 12:14 PM


You don't get it, and lucky for you, you don't need to. I'm in a different situation.

It seems to me that your position is exceedingly superficial. You state quite correctly that the Captain's tone and style are civil and courteous, seemingly oblivious to the impact of his words.

I have no issue with his style or tone. I have grave issue with the intent and potential import of his irresponsible statements. Unnamed experts saying CrossFit is dangerous does not excuse a Navy Captain with perfect access to profoundly contrary and widespread information.

Shamefully you've lumped all CrossFitters together in your condemnation. Read your words. The truth is, Sir, some acted reprehensibly, others called him reckless and dangerous, while others, still, sided with the Captain. What happened to your judgement on this score?

We have a Navy Captain who in a preview of the upcoming ENCOMPASS, sent a message fleetwide to all Chief of Staffs, Commanding Officers, OICs, and CMCs condemning without citation, research, investigation, or thought, a critical overhaul of the Nation's Armed Forces, an overhaul that hundreds if not thousands of good soldiers have staked reputation, career, future, and even life on.

Whether he got bad gouge from an SME, or is the pawn of a billion dollar contacting agency losing traction to CrossFit, or it came to him in a dream, the action is reckless, reprehensible, and immoral. Somewhat like shooting into a crowd without intent to harm.

I hold the Captain "strictly liable", while you, hold him harmless seemingly without concern for the impact of his words or recognition of his responsibility; you give him a pass because it came out nice.

Yours is a position I almost envy - a position luxury does not afford me.

I greatly appreciate your support and wish you knew of the programs, proposals, contracts, and business that were threatened by Captain Picker's,as you put it, "sound position, ultimately wrong, but sound nonetheless, based on input form so-called experts".

Two more things. First, I know who the SME was that consulted with him, and it gives him no quarter, not in my mind. Second, I think your position is well defined by your seeming indifference to what is at best a misogynist slur.

I think you're a good guy Pleepleeus. I think you're considerably nicer than you think I am. I appreciate and respect your niceness. I honestly believe that the world needs people like you. Duty prevents me from being that nice.

Comment #615 - Posted by: Coach at July 13, 2008 2:31 PM

The elitism and "my way is the only way" here is ridiculous. I piggy back on what pig #609 said (pun intended), the Navy has to make numerous decisions throughout, to include the monitoring of its physical training program. The Captain deals with with many things, and im sure he doesn't know all that much about crossfit, so he wont endorse it. That doesn't mean that people can't do crossfit, or work out with intensity, are you suggesting the people stay in good shape through just following unit PT? No, its about personal responsibility. You can make unit PT as hard as you possibly can, but its still on the people themselves to put in the effort. If you want to change the physical training culture within the armed forces then teach people, get people enthusiastic about it, transform your unit, show alternatives to the standard quo. Why do a good portion of elite units, cops, firefighters, athletes, crossfitters or even many average Joes do functional movements and work out with intensity? Because we take personal responsibility to ensure that there is a constant evolution in all aspects of development. Pleepleeus is right on track, this is pathetic, seeing people denigrate a man because he has a differing opinion, having the audacity to say he is unpatriotic and served the country without honor because he wont endorse crossfit. I don't agree with the captain either, but either educate people, inspire people or offer an alternative. Or continue on with this pathetic campaign to denigrate a man for a lack of understanding on a fitness concept.

Comment #616 - Posted by: zo 26/m/190/5'10 at July 13, 2008 2:53 PM

Coach, I respectfully point out again that it is clear you are privy to A LOT more information than what has been provided to us. If the Captain is a raging idiot who doesn't belong in the service of Country, Ok, but I cannot and will not come to that conclusion without facts. The only facts I have is the several sentences you posted under the Rest Day banner. No one can make a reasonable judgement on the man based solely on that. No one. On its face, there is nothing reckless nor immoral about his statement. Without the proper context, I can never agree with you. If there are other things that have transpired that would make his position unsound, I would change my view. But I don't have access to that information. If you are in a position where you can't share the additional information you base your judgement on, I can appreciate that. As for his knock on the "girls", I was actually serious when I said it very well couldve been said tongue in cheek - because it is such a ludicrous statement.

Comment #617 - Posted by: Pleepleeus at July 13, 2008 3:10 PM

Having had some time now to mull things over and not just post an instant, and therefore somewhat unthoughtful response, I have the following to say.

The issue here is not the captain; and it is not the words he chose to use; nor even the intent behind the words. The issue here is, was the captain right in broadcasting these words? Not just right in a scientific and empirical sense, but right in accordance with morality and his duty. It boils down to this: since there is evidence to suggest that what he said was overly generalising at best or empirically false at worst - and because this will be diffused throughout the navy, possibly to the point of acceptance - the potential ramifications are people unnecessarily being gravely injured or dying. Thus then, the answer to the question "Is the captain right to say thus?" is clearly: No.

He has a right to freedom of speech, but that does not by definition mean that what he says is (morally) right.

Comment #618 - Posted by: Darije at July 13, 2008 3:27 PM

"Comment #597 - Posted by: Brian Mulvaney
Paul, when you say "empirically" which observations and experiences are you referring to? "
--Brian - just mine. Generally, officers and leaders that focused on fitness did so because they were confident in that arena and didn't know what else to offer to make a mark. Unfortunately, it did not appear to make their commands run better. Timeline for 'running better' is about 12-30 months at the longest. Also, their tools for creating 'fitness' were crude by comparison to CrossFit. If you hit a piece of concrete with a rubber mallet, because that's all you can get, you would be rational to conlude that removing the concrete is a waste of time.

"On what basis are you confident that the returns on improved fitness are not tangible with respect to increased capacity to execute the mission? If you think about it more closely, I suspect you'd conclude that the ROI for improved fitness in the Teams versus other operational units is a difference of degree, not kind.
--Brian, totally correct. My comparison was based to two considerations. Many of the most effective people I've served with are not fit, but they get the mission done exceptionally well. By contrast, many seemingly fit individuals contribute little to the mission of fixing airplanes and flying them. I do not question the proposition that REAL fitness given to Sailors would add significantly to mission accomplishment. I would like to be part of making that happen. Clearly from what I've read since Coach started weighing in, there's far more going on here than what I know about, limiting the utility of my observations.

"You own a piece of the Navy's mission. How is your personal experiment going? Your physical work capacity has increased enormously over this time last year. (I've got some CF Games photos for you, btw.) Has your improved fitness lead to any tangible improvements in your ability to execute your duties?"
--Absolutely, in many ways, and I'm enormously grateful for it. In my tiny sphere of the Navy, I have provided the opportunity for others to get what I've gotten at personal cost and some professional risk, because I think it is important. However, I doubt the rest of the Navy could see it the way I see it without my experiences. My point was not to justify what has been chosen, but rather to point out the sensibility of it given their frame of reference. I suppose that's not particularly useful unless one desires to know wtf has been going on in the Navy wrt fitness, and how it makes a certain amount of sense.

Coach, I'm glad you are on fire for this and I friggin' hope it works.

BTW, just back from a weekend with Barry "I walk into sign posts" Cooper, the Chaos Compound's CCT Joey, and Mark Maslowski of MaxFx Crossfit and am slightly less retarded than I used to be; thanks gents for schooling me. I'm so grateful for it that I won't make public mention that I broke Joey's record for tire flips.


Comment #619 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 205 44 yoa at July 13, 2008 4:03 PM


No one here has denigrated anyone "for a lack of understanding on a fitness concept". Many, many, of the people here don't understand CrossFit.

Where was it said that the Captain wasn't patriotic? I've seen that strawman floating in several posts but not seen anyone suggest it. Point out where it was suggested that he wasn't patriotic. Neither was anyone denigrated for having a different opinion, nor lacking honor. Can you understand that? If you can point to anyone saying that he lacked honor or patriotism, I'll apologize to you and chastise them. If you cannot find anyone stating such, you need to keep out of this and let the adults debate.

What he said was unprofessional, irresponsible, reckless, dangerous, and false. It may very well cost lives.

Read Darije's post until it makes sense. You'll need to understand our argument before you can refute it. You aren't even able to repeat what most of us are saying. I think Pleepleeus does. Your characterization of my gripe is so wide of the mark it says much more about you and your abilities to reason than anything else. It's clear you are utterly lost.

Comment #620 - Posted by: Coach at July 13, 2008 4:20 PM


I wouldn't want to compare one unfit individual to another fit. I'd want to compare a man unfit to the same man fit. This I think would give a truer value to the role of fitness.

Interestingly, Equitable Life, Unuum, and Coors did solid studies on their corporate fitness programs. On average the return for every dollar spent was nearly six as I recall. The return came from increased productivity, decreased absenteeism, decreased injury, and maybe less tangible but no less real, increased morale.

I know of a young Marine who reduced Harrier fatalities dramatically in large part by improving fitness and morale within the maintenance crews. Of course their had to be some change or increased adherence to SOP but fitness and morale was the first and necessary step. Fitness was his primary morale boosting tool. His name is Major Andrew Thompson; he runs CrossFit Quantico.

Surely increased morale, absenteeism, and injury is relevant to every unit's mission, no?

Finally, I cannot adequately express how valuable you are to this community, and how much I respect you. Thank you!!


Comment #621 - Posted by: Coach at July 13, 2008 4:33 PM

"Surely increased morale, absenteeism, and injury is relevant to every unit's mission, no?"

Yes, absolutely, and I have always admired those officers who could make such a difference at the unit level (see Skip's comments above, and MAJ Thompson) and aspired to do the same. Unfortunately, in the way the Navy is presently able to evaluate these things, those factors are lost in the noise whereas takeoffs, and landings equalling take offs, stand out instantly. I know, it's hard to believe a govt agency can't get better clarity on these things, and more complete alignment between what it says and what it does.

Coach, I sent a letter Saturday that is perhaps the best response to your last comment, it is a long way of saying 'I can't thank you enough.'

Humbly, Paul

Comment #622 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 205 44 yoa at July 13, 2008 6:16 PM

Thank you for at least responding. Post #499 was the main one that I had an issue with, it has apparently been removed which is good, it was to the effect that his 20 years are worthless because of his comment. However, a quick glance through the posts got "Capt. F__cker" (422), "Capt. is a P__ssy", has no balls, etc, I'm sure I could go on. Maybe he is, I don't know him personally, but is that how this issue should be addressed? Were his comments ignorant, absolutely. So the crossfit community responds by attacks on his character, without even knowing the guy? I understand absolutely why you have beef with him, and you should absolutely defend your fitness program against his comments by a direct conversation if possible. I have more of an issue with the ignorant comments and ways people have responded, which makes the community of itself look ridiculous. Yes, there were some very good posts, that reached out a hand to the Captain and offered to help him understand Crossfit. But how many people said that they sent him a "nastygram" for his comments, or something of that sort?
As far as the military's adoption of one fitness program, I think its inconsequential. Is crossfit an incredible tool to help someone meet their goals, absolutely. I understand most of the concepts of Crossfit, and some of the intricacies of it. But none of this is possible without personal motivation. You can't just give people the Crossfit workout concept and expect changes unless they themselves want to change themselves. What I'm arguing is that there has to be a change, an enthusiasm within the armed forces that makes people want to work out, improve themselves and develop, whichever way they choose. If crossfit is the way to go, then so be it. This guy is inconsequential and not even worth my time, I could care less what he has to say about fitness. If a unit wants to get in shape and use crossfit to do so, there is nothing stopping them. Programs like this fluorish because of positive recommendations and people leading by example. Do you really want this to be institutionalized? I'm sure you can think of a few examples where government took a great concept and tried to use forced compliance to achieve its goals, followed by ultimate failure. Yeah, the Captain's comments weren't supported and he should not have said them, but the argument that people are going to die because of it is in my opinion weak. I know of absolutely no "fit" individual that relies strictly upon their service's physical fitness guidance, they get to be fit by dedication and making personal choices to improve themselves.
As far as whether I am "lost", I don't pretend to know you, so don't pretend to know me. I made it to the top echelons of collegiate swimming, through a 22 month pipeline that is one of the toughest in the armed forces, and I work my as$ off to keep myself the best I can be. You provide an amazing service, and I have learned a lot by combining my old workout regiment with some of the Crossfit fundamentals, and I can't thank you enough for the work you have done throughout the community. While you are going to stand for what you believe in, I'm going to do the same. You have a right and an obligation to talk to the Captain and figure out a solution, but putting his name out with an email address and no chance for him to explain himself or retract his statement is wrong.

Comment #623 - Posted by: zo 26/m/190/5'10 at July 13, 2008 7:23 PM

I disagree with what the capt. says I guess he doesn't see that most sailors you see are overweight and if you think otherwise go to a pier and watch sailors come off a ship and see how most of them are muffin tops

I think it would seriously benefit everyone if the started introducing crossfit in more command pt because the can get 10x's more pt in then they do now

and on how he says its against navy core values on how the workouts are named and that it is potentially dangerous for your health if the exercises are not done properly I guess he doesn't know how all of the special operations communities in the navy are doing crossfit and they are doing crossfit in pretty much every phase of bud/s and I'm pretty sure thats a navy "A" school and also the marines have adopted it into their workout training and have crossfit gyms at their bases even in the middle east

but I think that the attitude towards fitness in the navy outside of the specops communities is a joke I've seen so many people who can't even pass their PFA I mean come on that is extremely easy.

what the capt. should do is start doing crossfit and see how it benefits him

so maybe the navy someday will come to its senses and realize that 3/4's of the navy is ridiculously out of shape

Comment #624 - Posted by: deepsea at July 13, 2008 8:47 PM

Well put zo, and thanks for the shout out earlier. Crossfit has become a deeply personal dedication and I enjoy sharing a WOD with people at the gym. The me vs. the workout mentallity is a daily challenge that I look forward to. Crossfit cannot and should not be shoved down anyone's throat. It is about achieving excellence far beyond society's standards. If everyone was elite, than it would lose its meaning. I believe in this program, but the people who think they are some kind of immortal because they do crossfit, just don't get it. I think those out for personal gain have it right, those out to prove something should find another outlet for their misplaced and mis-timed teenage rebellion.

Comment #625 - Posted by: pig at July 13, 2008 8:59 PM

I am throwing my two cents in.

I do not purport to have anywhere the knowledge as to "What is Fitness?" as Coach does.

This I know: X amount of work needs to get done by Y #number of people. The conditions will vary and sometimes the $hit hits the fan.

the world around us, even in our soft way of life, can be harsh. In the world of Force on Force, the laws of the jungle apply more overtly.

"To every man there comes in his lifetime, that special moment when he is figuratively tapped on the shoulder and offered a chance to do a very special thing, unique to him and his talent; what a tragedy if that moment finds him UNPREPARED and UNQUALIFIED for the work which would be his finest hour."

Many of us keep looking as CrossFit as a "Working Out".

Many of us keep looking at CrossFit as a "Community"

Many of us keep looking at CrossFit as a "fill in the blank"

CrossFit is Preparation for life. For those off us who live the role of Sheepdogs, we owe it to families of our subordinates to ensure that our subordinates are prepared.

We also owe it to the families of our subordinates, to give clear, unabashed "council" to our superiors when their policies prevent us from executing our charge.

I could give to craps about which service or careerfields this CAPT is over or influences. He either did not consult with the right people or did not want to hear the truth. His SMEs are the team guys. They are the ones who run to the sound of the guns and are expected to "make it happen". They are all the influence he needs.

If he would approach this as preparation and not "working out" his judgement would surely clear up. This is dangerous business, "trigger-puller" or not. Accepting weakness is not an attribute I look up to or am willing to abide by.

It isn't about fat bellies. This is about driving-on, toughening up, and preparing for all hell to break loose. In a gun fight,rescuing a child, an ambush, a burning aircraft carrier, a stuck submarine, a bad jump, a frigid swamp, a mountain, a relentless desert or making it to the extraction point.

This is the domain of warriors of all types, of all MOS's. You must be prepared.

This leader, and spokesman, too quickly dismisses what we know to be true.

His approach reeks of affirmative action. The assumption that you can't do the heavy lifting on your own merits, and he, the benevolent elite will protect you from your responsibilities of preparation.

The guy is lost in "the stars".

Comment #626 - Posted by: CCTJOEY at July 13, 2008 9:40 PM


So we have three people who have acted inappropriately: Capt Picker for stating an opinion, the person on the initial email distribution who forwarded it on and CFHQ posting portions of the forwarded email.

Capt Picker should have felt safe in forwardeding his email to Chief of Staffs, Commanding Officers, OICs, and CMCs that he interacts with; with some sort of confidence is that any on that distribution disagreed they would "man up" and disagree directly to him. Perhaps that happened, perhaps it didn't.

The grieved receipent of the email acted inappropriately by forwarding the email prior to publication (which is not on the ENCOMPASS page) to outside agencies (lets hope for that individuals sake it wasn't stamped For Official use only).

And finally, CFHQ for taking a snippet of a future publication from a disgruntled employee and somehow equating Capt Picker's comments to loss of life, loss of monetary supprt for the MWR, loss of business, etc.

Since CFHQ took the step in publishing a snippet, could they actually post the entire article? It is not on the web.

Thanks again.

Comment #627 - Posted by: Marc V at July 14, 2008 4:55 AM

Mr. Glassman:
A final thought on this topic. It is Monday and I have to get back to reality. I agree with you 99%. You took a great concept, packaged it and delivered it to a large group of people. However, my original points were lost in translation. 1. Speed of movement, 2. Capt. P’s feelings that CF image is not in keeping with the Navy’s core values.
1. I have an issue with the whole speed of movement thing (to a degree). Like many O Lift people I’ve known, we will agree to disagree and that is fine with me. On the other hand the whole CF “package” is an excellent methodology for delivering high intensity to a large number of people. The effectiveness of high intensity is not a question in my mind, nor is the set up you employ. I have some feelings in regards to the speeds of movement with certain loaded lifts. But that is my opinion and it was only offered to give some possibilities the Captain’s comments. As for advancing the art of science and human performance, my students may argue that; however, you are right to a degree. I haven’t found a relatively easy way to sell high intensity. I simply ask people to work hard and have the mental discipline enough to control the movement as well as the speed of contraction. I am not machine based, I do not disregard the O lifts or Plyometric or anything that I deem as an open, functional, productive skill that is safe. Personally and professionally I have a limit to what movements and to what degree I will use them. And this takes into consideration the arguments that O lifts are dangerous as well as the counter argument, they are not properly supervised. As I know all of that sounds redundant I try to remain open and flexible to what is useful. For me where art meets science is what movements (at what loads) I feel the line should be drawn. In looking at your affiliates and what they do it seems this idea is ok in the CF community? Maybe I’m mistaken? I would not say I really know what you do nor would I try to pretend I do. I do not like when outside professionals throw rocks in my pool so I would not want disturb your waters. I hope that makes sense? When the Captain noted musculoskeletal injuries I offered what I believed were potential reasons.
2. As for professionalism, I could care less what is posted on your site. That is your business and no one in your community seems to mind. If you asked what I thought while in uniform then I guess I would err on the rigid side. I noted a Marine of 20 years who said he didn’t have a problem with it. There has been a lot of argument back and forth on this idea during this discussion, specifically over the female names. The Captain has his reasons and again they should be respected and supported.
I would end with these thoughts:
1. I do not want to jump on your site and engage you in a negative argument. First of all that is unprofessional and second of all it isn’t even face to face. In my mind that is lower than unprofessional. If there are any undertones or direct statements in any of my posts that you felt disrespectful then I apologize and gladly retract any of them.
2. In regards to the CSCCA’s “master strength coaches” and to Coach Riley and any of the like. These guys have been in this business 30+ years moving the concept of metabolic training forward. Even Author Jones was thought to be nuts when introducing the idea that more could be less (among other concepts). I never said that some of these coaches had a limited field of vision in terms of what they would do. If you look at what some of them do today it contradicts articles they wrote against things they disliked 15-20 years ago! Regardless I still respect these individuals and what they have done for this industry. As I go through the list of “master strength coaches” I wouldn’t laugh at any of these individuals or their accomplishments in the industry, regardless of whether I agree with them or not. Furthermore, these coaches are traditional HIT guys and O Lift guys alike.
3. I correct myself the video was called “mother and daughter.”
4. As I read through your Affiliation page I agree and applaud it all. You opted for affiliation rather than franchises. You gave away information when others tried to package and price their products. You knew that what you had would draw people in regardless. As a result the customers came to you. When I first read that page a year ago it reminded me of a Field of Dreams – type training scenario. I visit your site maybe once a week or every other week and I do not participate in the posts. Somehow this post caught my eye and I read it. After reading the post and hearing some responses something was off. Some posts hit it right on but many others were disrespectful. Regardless of what we think this guy still sits closer to the fight than most of us and he does what he does. If he doesn’t like CF then who cares right? In keeping with my previous opinion of CF then let him come to you right? The Marines are onboard, and CF moved to Camp Pendleton, various Army guys send in pictures and the SEALs have adopted it. As I said I heard the USS Dubuque has a CF onboard? I suppose what I was attempting to get at is that why would we disrespect anyone in uniform for any reason. (i.e. Captain nose picker? Come’on really?!) If he is a bureaucrat trying to make a name for him then he’ll have to yield to the growing numbers. The discussion (as I saw it) only served to disrespect him and other members of the Navy. It also drew out members of the Navy to disrespect their branch. That form of discussion doesn’t do anyone any good as attitude is a large part of the game. Why not just continue to push ahead, win over the troops and force the Navy’s hand rather than bash an entire branch for one person.
I hope that expresses my thoughts in a more concise and positive manner? Thank you.

Comment #628 - Posted by: PA_Rob at July 14, 2008 5:36 AM


<Pleepleeus is right on track, this is pathetic, seeing people denigrate a man because he has a differing opinion, having the audacity to say he is unpatriotic and served the country without honor because he wont endorse crossfit.

Sir, is this a lie, mistake, liberal reflex or all three?

Comment #629 - Posted by: Coach at July 14, 2008 5:51 AM


"Or continue on with this pathetic campaign to denigrate a man for a lack of understanding on a fitness concept." On what basis do you call this a campaign? No operation was planned and followed through; this was down to the personal responsibility of the posters and "nastygrammers".

"If a unit wants to get in shape and use CrossFit to do so, there is nothing stopping them." Because it may not be true that "This guy is inconsequential" that statement may not stand for much longer, to the detriment not just of those who would benefit from CrossFit, but of those who already do.

"I know of absolutely no 'fit' individual that relies strictly upon their service's physical fitness guidance." Never did anyone of authority say that this is the case, or will be the case, but changes in the services' PT would help provide even more impetus for "change, an enthusiasm within the armed forces that makes people want to work out" and hence result in a heightened mean level of fitness across the military.

"Putting his name out with an email address and no chance for him to explain himself or retract his statement is wrong." This would be true if his statements were most definitely inconsequential, but surely we have a moral obligation to prevent people being harmed being done by other people's rashness?

Comment #630 - Posted by: Darije at July 14, 2008 6:57 AM

#322, Spider Chick,

"Don't open your mouths for another round of blather about rank respect for someone who knows nothing about what it takes to stay alive out there. I can say what I want. I am an officer and I went to war."

Just because you CAN, doesn't mean you SHOULD. Many people have gone to war (myself included). Ranting like a 14 year old playing WOW doesn't help the discussion along.

Comment #631 - Posted by: James at July 14, 2008 8:42 AM

Comment #625 - Posted by: Marc V at

Mark, from what I saw, that was the entirity of the Captain's comments on the topic. Paul

Comment #632 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 210 44 yoa at July 14, 2008 8:57 AM


Was it? I don't know because it doesn't appear on ENCOMAPSS and apparently was an attachment to an email that Coach wasn't an original receipent.

And Capt Picker's entire "article" may have been about safety and Cross Fit was point?

I fear we shall never know because of Coach's refusal to post, or even privately email, the entire chain. (A bit dramatic but maybe that will catch Coach's eye before i have to resort to name calling).

I am being a bit of "dog with a bone" about this, but if Coach expects us to defend Cross Fit based on "opinion" piece; give us the whole piece. Capt Picker may have provided additional examples of unsafe work outs, SME data, etc. Give me everything you have and then let me make a decision. Coach didn't expect anyone to have tried Cross Fit just because someone said Cross Fit, did he? We all observed the WOD in our own ways and see the results differently.

So post the entire column.

Comment #633 - Posted by: Marc V at July 14, 2008 9:50 AM

Thanks man, I agree with you wholeheartedly. Physical training is a personal dedication and I love hearing and seeing people like you that let your actions and results speak for themselves. I'm not going to speak for some of the elite crossfitters, but the reason I am inspired by people like Dutch and Speal and OPT is that (from what I have seen) they do their workouts, train hard, help people that go out and actively ask for help, and stay humble. I dig that, they appreciate the crossfit method and that is the path they follow, but they understand there are different paths for different goals. Your view of fitness is in my opinion exactly how it should be, waking up each morning and putting in the time to improve yourself. bada$s man, keep on keepin on

Thanks, I'll try to clarify the four points you brought up, let me know if I don't make sense.

1) "On what basis do you call this a campaign?" Here is my reasoning. There is a 5 sentence comment made by a Navy Capt. that undoubtedly fueled tensions within the crossfit community. However, I do not see any mention of coach or someone from crossfit headquarters trying to rectify this situation by a direct approach in order to mitigate the problem before this post (I could be wrong, but in that event the release of more pertinent information should be provided). Lets say the Captain said his piece and in response coach had a direct conversation in which he showed the captain evidence that contradicts the ignorant comments and made a compelling, rational case as to why his comments could be harmful. If the Captain simply dismissed the evidence and refused to keep an open mind, then absolutely, coach should post ALL the pertinent information. But what if the undermining of this Captain could have been avoided? What if coach provided his compelling case and the captain said "wow, I had no idea, Ill look into this and retract my previous statement." All of this could have been avoided, the Captain could have kept some dignity within the crossfit community, and perhaps functional fitness could have taken a step forward. Obviously I don't know all the behind the scene things that went on with this, but if the Captain refused to talk to Coach then that should be mentioned. But as an outside observer, my take on the initial post is an implied suggestion to bombard the guy with emails (with the understanding many of these emails would be written in anger, and by people who don't understand crossfit concepts themselves), undermine him and make him look like a fool. Yeah, his comments were dumb because he probably doesn't understand most of the concepts, but he still "approves" of intense physical training, which is at least something (yeah, I know that last part is kinda weak, I wont argue that point). So to answer your question, I see this as an implied campaign, giving a small portion of information (the 5 sentence clip) with an email address, knowing full well that the Captain would recieve "nastygrams." My suggestion would have been to engage the captain directly, give him an opportunity to rectify the situation himself, and if that doesnt work provide all the information as to what transpired.
Sorry, im running out of time, I will try to answer the rest of your points tonight. Can you clarify your second point though, I just want to make sure I'm clear? Are you saying that his comments could hurt current crossfitters' ability to work out on their own? Thanks, I'll try to get back to you when I have some free time.

I already discussed it, 499 is a major one I had a problem with that involved his honor and patiotism, which was removed. Pleepleus at #520 saw it too, so no, I am not lying. I know there were more, and I give you credit for upholding standards (I realize the "Capt. F__khead" one was removed too, along with a few others). I'm not going to get in a stupid argument over what exactly was filtered out, I remember the ones I read trashing the guy, many of which have been removed, but I know I am not lying. As far as a mistake, I don't have access to the filtered posts, so perhaps I could have misunderstood one or two of them, I dont know, so you can add a mistake on my end if it is justified. As far as a "liberal reflex"????? Don't exactly know where that argument comes from, I'm proud of my service and I sleep well at night.

Comment #634 - Posted by: zo 26/m/190/5'10 at July 14, 2008 9:57 AM

On a lighter note:

Here is a recent article from the Stars and Stripes with a bunch of Navy guys CrossFitting:


Now, doesn’t that just warm your heart?

Comment #635 - Posted by: Jimmy at July 14, 2008 10:06 AM

Pleepleeus and Liberal are two concepts that are diametrically opposed. And I didn't lie about anything, and I don't know of any mistakes I made in this thread. If I made any, I'll fess up. Actually, I'm not really sure how to take Coach's post to Zo that included a reference to me. Context is king.

Comment #636 - Posted by: Pleepleeus at July 14, 2008 10:18 AM

Marc, the entire column or not, this is emblematic of what the Navy deals with. This guy is the reason so many sailors are in horrible physical condition. The Navy goes the way it's leadership decides, and this is a classic example of how some desk jockey with stars on his shoulders makes decisions based on his experience, which is sitting behind a desk reading stats out of a medical journal, rather than getting out there and sweating his ass off with the troops. If this guy would look at the cream of the Navy's crop and see what they're doing, and why they're the best, and use that as the model, it wouldn't be a question. What in the Navy is tailored to any individual sailor? Not a damn thing. Definitely not the medical care. If a sick sailor goes to medical and says "I'm sick", or "I broke my leg" or "it hurts when I pee" or "I've been shot", guess what the response is? Take some Motrin, drink a lot of water. There's no way to efficiently tailor a fitness program to hundreds of thousands of sailors, other than to set the standard and say 3,2,1 go. With competent, certified trainers CrossFit would be the best thing the Navy could do for physical readiness.
If you couldn't tell, I was in the Navy, and was obviously frustrated with the way some things are done. You have to respect the brass of the Marine Corps They get out there and sweat with the troops which is why the Corps is leaning more and more toward CF.

Comment #637 - Posted by: adamulm at July 14, 2008 10:25 AM

This whole thread has prompted me to search for any trace of QMCM Donald Burns on the internet. His retirement was attended by the then-current and two former CNOs, one of whom, I believe, became a chairman of the JCS. With virtually unbroken service on surface line ships, he served from WWII until his (involuntary)retirment in 1977. Apparently, he died 5 years later at the age of 59. The fact that a man of his service and stature has left so little a footprint on the internet is sad. May he rest in peace.


Comment #638 - Posted by: Mark Brinton at July 14, 2008 10:29 AM

Pleepleeus #634,

Zo included you in something he made up. I merely quoted him. Other than Zo's attributing his thoughts to you, this has nothing, Sir, whatsoever, to do with you.

Zo, whom I quoted, makes claim that members of this community had questioned the Captain's patriotism, that he serves his country without honor, and that the rationale for these assertions was because the Captain won't endorse CrossFit. This is untrue in each of the particulars and in total.

To repeat, nowhere did I see the Captain's patriotism questioned. Nowhere did I see the assertion that the Captain served without honor. Nowhere did I see the Captain criticized for not endorsing CrossFit for any reason, much less the two offered that never occurred.

Zo's allegation are false; he made them up. This is considerably more egregious than the name calling Zo labels a "pathetic campaign".

I've seen some bad behavior in this thread but lying about the community's response takes the cake. Comment #614 is shameful.

Oh, and one more bit, no one on these pages has said anything negative about the Captain because "he has a differing opinion" or "for a lack of understanding on a fitness concept". These too are either figments of Zo's imagination or deliberate lies.

Comment #639 - Posted by: Coach at July 14, 2008 10:54 AM

Ive never read anything that remotely resembled a lie on the part of " Zo/26/m/190 " .
I dont know his politics- but his style of communicating is serious, respectful and impeccable. And whether or not he is mistaken is an open question.

"how many years of distinguished service compensate for careless, reckless, false comments that directly endanger sailor's/soldier's lives? I believe that a distinguished career or reputation can be damaged in an instant."

I believe this was in reference to Picker- but also I think it can apply to the things that we accuse one another of.

Ive forgotten who said it.

That, Sir, was a lie.

Comment #640 - Posted by: james at July 14, 2008 11:14 AM


Thank you for replying.

It seems to me that our use of the word "campaign" differs from mine, with your definition allowing for a campaign to exist in the absence of planning and explicitly stated intentions - but I dare say this is an integral part of the definition of a campaign. I would also contend that the "implied suggestion" of the original post was not to provoke an admittedly visceral and vitriolic response from many CrossFitters - Coach himself said that many posters were "reprehensible" - but to offer a conduit through which the captain could learn and rectify his mistake.

To clarify my second point, yes I am suggesting that the Captain's comments may, in a worst case scenario, prevent utilizing CrossFit to its full potential.

Finally, it still seems to me that you are missing the point, which is that the captain's actions were foolhardy and immoral (as outlined in one of my previous posts). It seems that you are trying to excuse the captain of this in two ways. Firstly, by saying that his lack of understanding somehow removes him from culpability ("I'm sure he doesn't know all that much about CrossFit, so he won't endorse it") - if a government refused to implement a new policy because it was told by a few people that it would lead to economic recession, despite masses of evidence to the contrary, it would rightly be criticised, told to look more closely at the issue, and make U-turn. Secondly, completely irrationally, you divert the attention away from the discussion of whether the captain was right or wrong by taking issue with the fact that some members of the CrossFit community acted in an emotional, angry and ad hominem manner - effectively, you tried (perhaps, even probably, not intentionally; I don't know you, so will draw no judgement) to undermine the principle arguments of the majority if the CF community by attacking its methods - an ad hominem attack - which has the slight whiff of hypocrisy about it.

Comment #641 - Posted by: Darije at July 14, 2008 11:52 AM


Excellent. Capt. Picker, at the very least, was in position of vincible ignorance and, given his power and authority, he had the wherewithall to overcome that ignorance.

"So far as fixing human responsibility, the most important division of ignorance is that designated by the terms invincible and vincible. Ignorance is said to be invincible when a person is unable to rid himself of it notwithstanding the employment of moral diligence, that is, such as under the circumstances is, morally speaking, possible and obligatory. This manifestly includes the states of inadvertence, forgetfulness, etc. Such ignorance is obviously involuntary and therefore not imputable. On the other hand, ignorance is termed vincible if it can be dispelled by the use of "moral diligence".... We may say, however, that the diligence requisite must be commensurate with the importance of the affair in hand, and with the capacity of the agent, in a word such as a really sensible and prudent person would use under the circumstances. Furthermore, it must be remembered that the obligation mentioned above is to be interpreted strictly and exclusively as the duty incumbent on a man to do something, the precise object of which is the acquisition of the needed knowledge.

Comment #642 - Posted by: Mark Brinton at July 14, 2008 12:24 PM


Is the question a lie? Or, do you think I was lying about my belief that a career can be ruined in an instant?

You seem pretty confused. That Zo's "style of communicating is serious, repsectful, and impeccable" is perfectly and completely irrelevant to the veracity of his statements. Please tell me that you understand that if I deliberately utter something false that saying it nicely doesn't alter the fact that it is a lie.

The lie occurs when he makes up what was said within the comments and not how he said it.

There's a disturbing phenomenon present here. Those of you focused on style and manner of speech seem completely unable to comprehend content. Style seems paramount and substance unfathomable.


Comment #643 - Posted by: Coach at July 14, 2008 12:30 PM

Sorry if I accidently included you in my argument, I just mentioned that you saw the post on #499 to which you responded "#499 is one of the most arrogant and self-important posts I've ever read. So in a nutshell, No matter what this Captain has ever done for the nation, no matter what he has accomplished, he is ultimately a threat to the lives of service members, and his service means nothing, because.....he...believes there's too great a risk of injury via Crossfit." I was just pointing out that you saw that specific post as well, I wasn't trying to speak for you or anything. Sorry for any confusion.
As far as calling me a liar? This is ridiculous, everyone knows that lots of "unproper" posts were up trashing the guy with ignorant comments, and I gave kudos to crossfit for maintaining some standards. Not that I am really all that offended, but I think if the point of this is to change the public opinion of Crossfit it comes about with professionalism, concrete evidence, and enthusiasm, not calling the guy juvenile names. Its hypocritical to say his comments are ignorant by calling him a "f__khead." Calling me a liar? Please, I know what I saw, and other people saw posts that trashed the guy, questioned the guys career, etc. If they never existed and some of the posts I am talking about didn't occur, then I will readily admit I am a liar, but its a moot point now that several of the posts are gone. If you don't agree with someone then engage their points, but calling me a liar or declaring that I have a "liberal reaction" is pretty weak and petty.

Thanks for the support, I think me and you have been pretty much on the same page on the posts I have read and you always provide a pretty solid perspective. Also, you don't use the strawman argument that is pretty much the status quo around here, but instead with rationality. Ohh, and if you care about my political fallings im pretty moderate with some libertarian principles. Thanks man, your a good guy and people like hearing from ya.

I will try to respond later today, I think I might end up doin a night mission, so maybe tomorrow. No promises though. Thanks for asking real questions though and stickin with an argument.

Comment #644 - Posted by: zo 26/m/190/5'10 at July 14, 2008 12:48 PM

Quick note: was on a construction job site this morning, and one of the guys who was working there last week died over the weekend in his sleep of a heart attack. 50 years old.

This stuff is real. Everything in life is a risk. Doing nothing can be as risky as doing too much.

The way I read this, senior officers in most large organizations worry more about doing the wrong thing, than the risk of not doing the right thing. You don't get punished, by and large, for lost opportunities no one else knew about. You get punished for making a decision which has your name on it that someone can portray as ill advised.

Perhaps paradoxically, Capt. Picker is here being roundly criticized for what might well still be viewed as a safe call, as seen from within the ranks of Navy Command officers.

In my own view, there is a lot of mental satisfaction to be gained from really not caring what people think, or even about the consequences of calling things like you see them. I can say with perfect certainty that that stance is not good for careers. It's not how you get ahead, financially, in most places (there are exceptions in very well run organizations), but it is how you maintain some possibility of personal integrity, and the capacity to tell yourself the truth.

The risks in the Navy, to me, of poor fitness are mainly along the lines of what might be termed "dissipative disorders". They are physical infirmities made worse by recurrent stress, which manifest in diseases which could be prevented by better, more carefully considered, fitness programs.

Rip some time ago thought he could make a living teaching deadlifts as a form of occupational safety, paricularly with respect to the prevention of back injuries. It was a good idea. It just didn't take.

It will be interesting to watch this whole thing evolve. It's not clear to me what the potential downside (and upsides) of this whole thing are. I would suppose the worse that could happen is people are forbidden to "CrossFit" on Navy bases, during Navy time. The best that could happen is some sort of trial is done, to put the presumed problems of this protocol to the test, so as to move the debate from conjecture to something more empirically grounded. This would likely lead to the deployment of something much closer to CrossFit Navy-wide, and perhaps even open support.

Since it sounds to me like most Navy Crossfitters train off base anyway, the worst case scenario is manageable. And with some luck, and assistance, perhaps we may yet see the best case scenario at some point.

Comment #645 - Posted by: Barry Cooper at July 14, 2008 12:50 PM

USMC baby. Crossfit it up!

Comment #646 - Posted by: John Blubauh at July 14, 2008 1:25 PM

Mark Brinton, thank you, firstly for the compliment and secondly, for naming the concept of "vincible ignorance", which is pretty much exactly what I was trying to express.

Zo, credit goes to you for not simply taking offence at my comments and descending into bickering and insults.

Comment #647 - Posted by: Darije at July 14, 2008 3:16 PM

I was in the grocery store today, buying Zoned paper towels, and got to thinking: if I was a virus, how would I approach this whole thing? Not being all that smart, I would figure step one would be to survive, then after that it would always be a little fuzzy.

Viruses have a lot of interesting traits. One is that in conditions not ripe for reproduction and spread, they can remain dormant, for long periods of time. Once conditions ARE ripe, they are able to adapt themselves to the conditions, so as to reproduce and spread as rapidly and efficiently as possible.

They typically have two modes of replication. One is through in effect negotiating a modus vivendi with their host, in which they don't reproduce to the point where the host is overwhelmed. The second is that in which they reproduce without regard to the host, overwhelm it, then spread through contagion to another host, at which point the process can be repeated.

I know this, because I read the Rest Day topics.

One other thing that occurred to me is that if it is true the Navy is fat, then per Gary Taubes we need to start in the canteens (Mess Halls? Slop pits? Not sure the Navy term). 5 gets you 25 they are following the food pyramid that is on the walls at schools around the nation.

Our fleets are breeding hyperinsulinemia like old school boats bred rats and barnacles. It's like scurvy, but with carbs.

Do with this randomness what you will. I get a free DVD tonight, and have decided to finally watch Fight Club. Not sure I'll like it, but it seems like a movie I should watch.

Comment #648 - Posted by: Barry Cooper at July 14, 2008 3:53 PM

coach- The question was not a lie- the insinuation was a challenge to his character.

The quote of yours was indeed a heavy accusation- and true in every respect when applied- but you say it in reference to his comments (decontextualised) about Crossfit- so Zo- for better or worse made a reasonable interpretation.
I read that quote and it looked to me as if you thought his refusal to endorse Crossfit constituted endangerment of his troops and a dereliction of duty- Zo cut to the chase to make a point- he called that thought what it was- a dis on the guys service to his country in it's entirety. Someone else called you on it as well.
Zo's and others extrapolation from that was reasonable. Calling it "a lie" or a figment of his imagination is just trash talking him- not arguing with him. A clarification would have had more style and substance.

The question really isnt whether substance trumps style or vice versa.
Its who has both- Zo, in my opinion has both, and the attack on him had neither.

Speaking of substance- why havent the many requests for full disclosure of the email/articles been addressed? Thats the crux of any real understanding- which I thought was the point of the topic. So if Im confused- its that lack of context.

Also confused as to why posts like Apollo's or Steve from Ocean City Md or PA Bobs dont enjoy the same level of rejoinder as Zo's- are those too stylish as well? These people are speaking from positions of levity- those (and a few others) are the interesting points of debate here. I would like to see your perspective on things they have to say.
CCTV also pretty much nailed it for me- which is odd.

Youre a brilliant coach, leading an important movement, and your work has changed my life for the better- thank you thank you thankyou- but I cant get with disrespecting well meaning supporters- Im missing the sychophant gene.
And the old style vs substance saw- invoking it is more style than substance- the two are quite entertwined as all adults well know.

Comment #649 - Posted by: james at July 14, 2008 4:35 PM

Comment #631 - Posted by: Marc V

Marc, I saw an 'advance copy email' (forwarded to me by a Master Chief and co-worker who loves CrossFit and was severly frustrated by the comments) version of Encompass on Friday AM. The part Coach posted was the only part that pertained to CrossFit or fitness. Look at the way it is written - his comments are an almost off hand end to the rest of whatever he wrote.

As best I can tell, that's all that was written by the Captain on the topic. If you (or James #648) can find any evidence to the contrary, by all means post it or email it to me.

The fact that the July Encompass was eventually published (I'm taking your word for this, I have not seen it) without the part about CrossFit most likely means he thought better of it. Do you have an alternate conjecture?


Comment #650 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 205 44 yoa at July 14, 2008 4:53 PM


I think you'll enjoy Fight Club. Hell I may watch it again tonight!

Your thoughts on a carb overstuffed Navy are right on - Navy nutritionists are teaching the same food 'facts' that the mainstream has been teaching for years. You should see the looks on folks' faces when I was invited to speak to our "Biggest loser" group (command weight loss contest); those that could stay with the information could almost immediately recognize the reality of it. The converts are now excited to have a weight control tool to work with in the Zone diet.

It seems to me that the Navy is in a strong postion to do significant experimentation with diet and exercise; the stakes are high, the population has a lot to gain by trying/learning a diet that actually works. Most of them know by now that 'low calorie low fat' does not "work".


Comment #651 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 205 44 yoa at July 14, 2008 4:59 PM

Comment #648 - Posted by: james at July 14, 2008
"Speaking of substance- why havent the many requests for full disclosure of the email/articles been addressed? Thats the crux of any real understanding- which I thought was the point of the topic. So if Im confused- its that lack of context."

James, I have a comment in the queue that addresses this. The full contents have been posted. That's all that was said in the advance copy of Encompass that was sent out last week, and which was appparently not retained in the published version.

Comment #652 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 205 44 yoa at July 14, 2008 5:02 PM


Pleasure spending time with you and Maz and Joey. The beauty of the Prowler is that if you meet Pukie, you are already in position. I was there on rounds 6, 7, and 8. Being wiser for the wear, I had nothing in my stomach.

Comments on Fight Club, that I'm tempted to post on Community but won't. This is shared enough.

You have seen a few of my essays. My read on Fight Club is that it presents clear insight into both the Nazis and Communist revolutionaries. In my own mind, with minor variations, the two are interchangable.

I remember vividly talking with a Chinese student at Swarthmore when I was about 19, where I stayed as a guest of a friend of mine in my itinerant pre-college years. He had read Mein Kampf, and was impressed by Hitler's demonization of department stores, and the bourgeois mindset generally.

Hitler thought that modern life was too soft, and he played directly on an almost hippie sense on the part of many Germans that life should be much more than working, being comfortable, reproducing, and then dying.

The twenties, for Germany, were a period of long-haired college students playing guitar in parks, going on long hikes in rough mountains, communing with nature, and reconnecting with the primal element of German heritage. Shirer is quite clear on this. He was there.

Hitler himself was a vegetarian, and appears only to have been drunk once. In some respects, one could almost view him as a hippie. He was a homeless vagrant for quite some time, and never held a real job. He was one of the first five members of the German National Socialist Workers Party, which was started in a basement somewhere--in Munich, if I'm not mistaken.

Like the hippies, he resented the commodification of life that pure Capitalism created, and hated the softness of the Germans he knew. He felt that they were a noble race, and deserved much better. To the end of improving his "Volk", he set out to reinstill a martial mindset that saw war as something that quickened minds, and developed strong spirits. He himself had experienced that at the front in WW1, and felt not only that Germany deserved a much better deal, but that war was a spiritual way of getting it.

To support him, he drew from a deep well of disenfranchised people who likewise felt that the "Cargo" of the twenties had somehow passed them by. He enlisted criminals, sadists, and anyone who would carry his banner.

Their anthem, eventually, was the Horst Wessel Lied, about a Nazi brownshirt who was killed in a barfight with Communists. They lit their torches to this song, and jackbooted SA members carried it in rank through many German towns.

The principle difference between the National Socialists and the Communists is simply that the former conflated Capitalism and banking with Jewry. That, and the fact that they privileged their nation, which contemporary linguists had tentatively identified as the home of Indo-European culture, which meant that they gave rise to Greek, Latin, Sanskrit, and proto-Iranian.

Iran, and Aryan, are linguistic cognates. Both mean "noble".

I look at a movie like Fight Club, and I see the same destructiveness. In actual deployment, they are nihilistic. The followers, if they lacked the movement, would all be suicidal. Regrettably, I think that same dynamic pertains today, in varying ways.

I don't like to see what I see. That's why I drink so much. But I believe I perceive things accurately.

There is much that is truly noble in American heritage (and its English antecedants), and we lose so much when we destroy the possibility of integrating our national story into the present.

Destruction is not creation. Hate is not love. We don't need to be Christians to understand this, but we need to remember what is valuable in Christianity to appreciate this.

My own vision, my own dream, is for all of us to learn to live in ways which make us happy. Not in revolution, but gradually.

Ivan Pavlov once stated his own principles for success, which were "passion and gradualness". I can back that unreservedly. This last relates directly to the point at hand.

My apologies for the distraction.

Comment #653 - Posted by: Barry Cooper at July 14, 2008 8:01 PM


Then the second point in my post #625 applies to your friend.

I assume that a US Navy Master Chief carries about the same weight as a Canadian Chief Petty Officer, so I can only hope that your friend challenged the Captain's comments directly or through his/her chain as appropriate, in addition to forwarding the email.

Thanks for providing some clarification, too bad the CFHQ staff couldn't do it.

Comment #654 - Posted by: Marc V at July 14, 2008 8:36 PM

Marc, the Master Chief is not in a position to challenge the Captain's comments, and to my knowledge did not forward it outside of his chain of command; it was forwarded to him by our CO. We both thought it frustrating but of little consequence (similar to Barry's comments above at the end of 643).

Not sure what you are getting at in relating 625 to the Master Chief.

Lots of folks feel like CFHQ owes them something for their participation.

Comment #655 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 205 44 yoa at July 14, 2008 8:58 PM

Barry, thank you for #651. It was a fun read, as was "It's like scurvy, but with carbs." (okay, in a different way) from #646.

I miss reading you here. We've all been busy.

Apolloswabbie thank you for for your efforts. While many of us lack the time and/or eloquence, you carry the banner with dignity and spirit. It was a kick meeting you at the games.

Interesting that the July Encompass didn't contain anything about the comment after all.

Comment #656 - Posted by: Steve S. at July 14, 2008 10:47 PM

I think the most likely outcome, and it may be long shot is this. Will CrossFit become the mainstay of the Navy PRT program? Probably not. Should it be something for MWR to invest in to offer on the bases as a voluntary program. Hell yes it should.

I love CF and will do it regardless of whether it is adopted by big Navy or not. As will most Sailors that like it. I think the Capt realizes that Sailors are industrious and will find a way do CF at their commands. The Captains comments are just that. His comments. Until a SECNAVINST, OPNAV inst, or CNP or some other high authority says the Navy will or will not CF, I think its best not to bash the man. Especially those of you who wear the cloth still.

A side note. how hard would it be to perform Oly's underway on a ship? My Rate NEC restricts me to DDG's or CG's so the weight rooms are small. Plus they rock and roll a good amount.

Comment #657 - Posted by: Jim at July 15, 2008 8:19 AM

I don't know if anyone is still reading this thread. I was the one that sent in this quote from the Capt. to Crossfit. This quote was ONLY in an email sent to I believe Chiefs and above and was forwarded to me by a friend. In this email he sumarized and touched upon different things that were in the July issue of the Encompass. Then in the 3rd paragraph of his email he continued with "Another item I wanted to touch on pertains to a cover story in a recent Navy Times on Crossfit..." I decided to send this to Coach because as a CrossFit business owner, I though his comments were very hasty and bad for my business. I know everyone is entitled to their opinion and I would never resort to ad hominem attacks. But the point of course is, he did not take the time to do the research before making such comments, and the comment about naming workouts after women was kinda funny. Some people just don't know, and will never know. Ya know?

Comment #658 - Posted by: Charlene at July 15, 2008 12:20 PM

Charlene, thanks for that.

Jim, you are kind to say so, thanks.

Comment #659 - Posted by: Apolloswabbie 6'2" 210 44 yoa at July 15, 2008 1:42 PM


Based upon my experinces in the US forces (granted only two years) TO; CC: and BCC; lines on emails don't seem mean a whole lot to receipents of emails AND I am thinking a Master Chief has channels to voice their displeasure that would have garnered the attention of CAPT Picker. I mean Senior NCOs have means/methods and connections I could not fathom as an officer and all those things seem to get the job done.

Charlene: I would have a bigger concern then some uninformed individual making statements in emails: the fact that Crossfits seem to opening faster than Starbucks. When I moved to where I currently live in there was 1 Cross Fit, in just over 24 months that has increased to 7 plus another opening in a month. I would be more worried about market saturation than emailed comments. I wish you the best in your affiliate.

Comment #660 - Posted by: Marc V at July 15, 2008 2:22 PM

Great video. One of the best that I have seen in a long time. It really got me fired up and I would love to compete in the Crossfit Games sometime.

Comment #661 - Posted by: TrevorW at July 15, 2008 3:05 PM

With all due respect, the Navy CAPT is simply being PC. Additionally, the real litmus for X-fit is the number of servicemen and women conducting X-fit, who appreciate the fitness required to close with and destroy our enemies. Combat theatres are filled with make-shift X-fit venues. Official policy is mildly amuzing but not reflect the grass roots movement.

Comment #662 - Posted by: will at July 15, 2008 4:36 PM

I have served with Capt Picker. He is a fine officer and his comments, while regrettable, may indeed reflect the reluctance of any branch of the Armed Forces to embrace a brand name such as Crossfit. People will do what works. Crossfit works. So, while not being the "official workout program of the US Navy" Crossfit is most certainly the official workout of the fittest Marines, Sailors, Airmen and Soldiers...isnt that right, LtCol Wilson.

Comment #663 - Posted by: Mark at July 15, 2008 5:26 PM

Warm-up 20 min run to rec center

DL-255 (275 fail)

Concentrating on form, especially with back squat.

Comment #664 - Posted by: Quietly Improving m/42/6'/183# at July 15, 2008 5:39 PM

Commercial off the shelf program? Crossfit isn't exactly the Thighmaster, or the Gazelle Trainer. As a person in special operations in the Navy, I can say that this guy is a shining example of all that is wrong with our service today. It begins with the absence of a backbone, and ends with the complete degradation of our military effectiveness. What makes these comments even more frustrating is that instead of keeping our narrow-minded, dim-wittedness within, we offer it up to show the world our asses. Everything must be tailored so as not to offend anyone, and be easy enough that everyone can do it. The men that fought the wars before us would be sick with disgust. I am ashamed, not of my service, but of the physical condition that is deemed acceptable, and the people who allow it to continue. Crossfit is the best workout that I have ever come across, and with a little humility, and intelligence anyone can get a great workout in without the fear of injury or Rhabdowhatever.

As far as the "Core Values" thing goes; I see the things that we used to stand for and held most important slipping away daily, and it is corrupted from the top down. The women for whom those workouts were named after are harder than this guy ever was or will be. This man speaks for himself, and no one else in our ever fattening Navy.

Comment #665 - Posted by: Clay at July 16, 2008 12:42 AM

Charlene, thanks for the clarification. Good luck with the affiliate if it were in Waldorf, MD I would definitely go. :)

Comment #666 - Posted by: lar at July 16, 2008 5:41 AM


Thank you very much for the support and kind words, I can tell you that it is much appreciated.


I'm sure you are probably sick of the topic (or aren't even reading anymore), but I got some free time so I'll make good on my word to post one last time. Sorry a little delayed, haven't been at a computer in a while.

My last post was directed at the first point you made in #628, which is why it seemed like I was missing the point. I will go back and try to answer the things you brought up in #634.

"Finally, it still seems to me that you are missing the point, which is that the captain's actions were foolhardy and immoral."

Can his comments be both? When I think of a word like foolhardy, I think recklessness, such as making a suggestion that isn't very well supported with the possibility of it ending up creating dangerous consequences. However, I think it is based upon a sort of naivity, whereas the word immoral implies that he willingly ignored his conscience or system of beliefs. Looking at his comments, I will definitely accept that his comments could perhaps be considered foolhardy, but I think it would be a hard sell to say they were immoral in the facts that we have. First off, he did consult some SMEs for his opinion, so to some level he can claim that he has supporting evidence. Should he have consulted the other side, gotten more information, strengthened his case? Absolutely, but there are times that one has to make a quick point (not that I know the details of his situation) and I think that we have all been guilty of coming to a conclusion with a limited understanding throughout our lives. He also makes mention of safety for his sailors showing that his main concern with this is the possibility that they will quickly adopt the intricacies of Crossfit, apply them inproperly, hurt themselves and quite possibly disrupt a deployment cycle, which could be devastating. A lot of people have made comments in regards to the "gentler, kindler" military, dreaming about the old days when (fill in the blank). Yeah, there are lots of things that I roll my eyes at, but the fact of the matter is that the safety mindset prevalent in the military now is saving lots of lives. Lots of different programs in the different services tackle the rise of deaths and injuries that occur during the summer, and while to most of us it seems like it is a waste of time (briefings, filling out forms as to driving plans, etc), the statistics speak for themselves, as deaths and injuries have plummeted since they began these "safety crusades." Sorry, that was a little off subject, but I do not think there is a link between him being overly cautious about safety and his comments being immoral. As far as the last portion of his comments...no idea, I think he was trying to make the earlier point on crossfit and tried to stretch a little too far, I dont know.
I am not saying that his comments themselves shouldn't be challenged, as someone like Charlene has every right to be upset. However, I think the manner in which this Captain was "challenged" is a delibrate action to inflame tensions when it could have been solved much easier. Putting inflamatory comments on a page written to thousands of people (of which coach admits many of whom do not understand crossfit itself) with little context and a link to his email, is bad enough. But not giving this individual a chance to defend himself, to explain himself, to retract his statement? From what several people have said, this didn't even appear in the magazine, and I have seen no explanation as to anything Capt. Picker has said in response, what happened. How many times have you seen a newpaper declare that some football player was charged with rape, but not even mention a month later when it is found out he was being extorted? I'm just putting this in the same category, crossfit headquarters or someone of official capacity should have brought up the comments to the Captain himself, and discussed them in a rational manner, rather than give it to the public and stand by while people call him "captain fu#khead" or what have you.
The reason I got so frustrated with this, is I (and im sure most people here) have been in this exact situation. When I first got asst. team lead, I was talking to some col. who was touring our facilities, and he was asking questions about our training, etc. Well anyways, my words came out wrong in one sentence, and it apparently sounded like I was implying some of the troops weren't up to par (I was trying to say that there's always room to improve and get better). I didn't recognize it at the time, but there were 3 of my guys right there who heard it, and immediately they thought it was a slight against them. Luckily, a sgt. was there too and he took me aside, let me know that my words sounded wrong, and I felt awful. I immediately went and apologized to the three guys, then brought it up to the col. the next day (though he had no idea what I was talking about, pry wasn't even listening). By taking me aside and telling me this, this sgt. singlehandedly saved my reputation, and I see a lot of correlations between myself and this Capt. Now I dont know the Captain, but I do not agree with the way this whole thing was handled. Aight, thats enough, I'm done on this subject, good talkin to ya, hope that clears some stuff up. Thanks for bearin with me.

Comment #667 - Posted by: zo 26/m/190/5'10 at July 16, 2008 4:14 PM

Thanks to those who took the time to email. I didn't think I was confused.

The issue seems to have run out of steam. I'm sure the this thread has been forwarded to many in the navy. Coach's comments aren't likely to go over very well.

Comment #668 - Posted by: Old Vet at July 16, 2008 7:14 PM

Zo (if you're reading),

Perhaps beating a dead horse, but...

Thank you for replying, to start.

If the captain was not immoral, then he was amoral - namely, he didn't think about the impact of his words in relation to his beliefs.

I think the captain was given (a roundabout) way of replying, through the July issue of ENCOMPASS. Since his words were not published, that can be taken as his retraction/correction. CFHQ though, should have made this clear (i.e. main page), in the interests of fairness to the captain.

But, the issue is done now. Those of us who felt he was wrong and felt that we were obliged to change things have seen that change; and you, who felt the captain was in an unfair position, can hopefully understand that (A) I, for one, do not think comments such as Captain F***head were justified, (B) he is no longer in that position and (C) that perhaps we can all take something away from this.


I hope that makes sense(!)

It was nice talking to you, too.

I'll bear with you any time. No hard feelings, if you have any.

Comment #669 - Posted by: Darije at July 17, 2008 5:01 AM

Zo (if you're reading),

Perhaps beating a dead horse, but...

Thank you for replying, to start.

If the captain was not immoral, then he was amoral - namely, he didn't think about the impact of his words in relation to his beliefs.

I think the captain was given (a roundabout) way of replying, through the July issue of ENCOMPASS. Since his words were not published, that can be taken as his retraction/correction. CFHQ, though, should have made this clear (i.e. main page) in the interests of fairness to the captain.

But, the issue is done now. For those who felt an obligation to see change because of the captain's words have seen that change; those, like you, who felt the captain was treated unfairly, can hopefully take heart in that (A) I, at least, do not think comments like "Captain F***head" were justified, (B) the captain is no longer in that position, and (C) perhaps we can all take something from this.


I hope that makes sense(!)

No hard feelings, I hope.

It was nice talking to you, too. I'll bear with you any time.

Comment #670 - Posted by: Darije at July 17, 2008 5:07 AM

I both agree and disagree with Capt. Picker. I believe that Crossfit is a fantastic program that yields tremendous results for a large population. The only thing i see that is lacking from the program is an emphasis on postural control and postural rehab. Granted I currently work at a "Globo gym" and am not currently crossfit certified. I still think that crossfit is an extremely benificial program I just see a few lacking areas.

Comment #671 - Posted by: Adam NASM-CES at July 17, 2008 5:52 PM

This train of thought continues to prove that the only thing harder than getting new ideas in is running the old ideas out. And the last time I checked crossfit workouts are named for women and men.

Comment #672 - Posted by: Keith at July 17, 2008 9:39 PM

This explains a lot. I always wondered why modern military operations always had such macho names - Desert Storm, Urgent Fury, Praying Mantis. It's policy.
In WWII, they used to be much more colourful and less Rambo-ish - Operation Market Garden, Carpetbagger, Obviate.
It's also like the easier the operation, the more macho the name. Urgent Fury attacked two Cuban fishing boats in Grenada, Market Garden involved the mass invasion by air of the low countries into the teeth of a well armed and highly experienced enemy.
Can't we have the old names back, a bit of understatement? Let's call the next attack on the Taleban 'Buttercup', or 'Picnic', so much more classy and less WWE than the ones they use today.

Comment #673 - Posted by: Reggie B at July 21, 2008 6:18 AM

An article such as this just goes to show how little research is truly done by those who say that they are in the know. Almost every program that comes into existence comes under the same scrutiny and is hit with the same prejudices based more on opinion than true science. I am new to the CrossFit arena but I completely understand how it works in developing neuromuscular effeciency, aids in weight loss, and increases lean muscle tissue and strength. Those who write articles such as this are the same persons who would have you do an hour of long slow distance work and tell you that it is the only true efficient way to being healthy. just like any other workout regime CrossFit will not be for everyone just because they may not be mentally prepared or they are recovering from certain injuries that may inhibit their movement but it is one of the most valuable tools that I have encountered for increasing the fitness and health levels of anyone who gets involved with the program.

Comment #674 - Posted by: Osa_B at July 21, 2008 6:53 AM

Last I checked Navy's core values were, "honor, courage and committment" or something along those lines. How the Capt makes an issue out of naming an exercise after a "female" and connection to the core values of the Navy is beyond my imagination.

May be it's a new "Crossfit imagination work out."


Comment #675 - Posted by: yohannes g negg at July 21, 2008 10:51 AM

wow... hot!

Comment #676 - Posted by: Richard Yun at July 21, 2008 4:05 PM

I find it funny that anyone in the Navy would comment on what is "correct" when it comes to addressing women and naming workouts after them. The whole Tailhook things just screams at me.

I too am military, USAF, and I can without a doubt, concern, or reserve say that the USAF PT progarm is a JOKE. While not a combat soldier like my brothers and sisters in other services I too must be able, in time of need, remove someone from a hostile location. The fact that I can run away quickly does not assist me in carring my buddy out of harms way. No amount of situps will help me carry gear into and out of a hostile environment.

My co-worker and I have started incorperating CF into our workouts and can only sing the praises of CF. Not only have a I, am my wife, seen my early 20's abs start to reemerge, but I feel great again.

As far as injury, I am able to do almost all the CF exercises and I have had two spinal operations (a fusion and a discotomy). My back feels like it did before the injury and I feel strong, not that I was weak before.

The good Capt can keep doing the Navy workout, I'll keep doing my CF workout. I would hope the Navy, USAF, ARMY, or USMC would NEVER adopt CF as an offical workout...like most things they get their hands on the senior leaders and their mindless followers would just F it up.

TSgt C
Barksdale AFB

Comment #677 - Posted by: Dale at July 22, 2008 8:48 AM

I guess Hurricanes go against the Navy Core values as well.

Comment #678 - Posted by: LT Jesse R. NAS Lemoore, Ca at July 24, 2008 11:09 AM

@ 1:31 Its Joe Bob Briggs! Casino on TNTs Monstervision!

Comment #679 - Posted by: BioBasics at May 29, 2011 6:06 PM
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