Catalyst – Your Summer Starting Point – May 2011

This would look even BETTER as a webpage!
Click here!

I've been very lucky, in April, to witness some of the most fit athletes in Northern Ontario tackle challenges that are frightening, even to them. I want to paste their pictures on my truck, drive around town, and show everyone: "Look! This is what's possible! EVERYONE here is normal – just like you! We like donuts. We have kids, and jobs, and not much time…but we're doing this crazy stuff, and we LOVE it!" Ask a member of the Catalyst Family: "Did you ever think you'd be doing…X?" They're likely to say no. "No, I never thought I could lift that much without hurting myself." "No, I never thought I'd run that fast." No, I never thought I'd fit into that dress…" And THOSE are the reasons we do this job.

While it's amazing to watch Cam and Whit and Teddy destroy workouts that I can barely finish, it's even more fulfilling to hear the real-time stories from OUTSIDE the gym: "I had to help my mother off the toilet, and I lifted her right up." "I got the top button done up on my wedding dress today!" "I ran the WHOLE mile without stopping!" "I got my first Toes-To-Bar!" The stories are even BETTER because most people aren't even in DECENT shape when they start. Some members are awesome, and some are simply amazing. And some, well…you wouldn't believe me if I told you. Better to see for yourself.   

This Month:

CrossFit Open 2011 Update!Ignite Explodes!Kids' Groups On The Grow!OnRamp – 50% OFF In May!BaseLine WeekBarbell Bettys!Why We Do EnduroWe've Got The Runs!

Andrew Hafler does Overhead Squats.
CrossFit Open Update
The 2011 CrossFit Games Open is now in its last week. The search for World's Fittest Man and World's Fittest Woman has only just begun, though. In June, Canada's most fit will meet in Etobicoke to settle the argument of Canada's fittest humans; two winners of each sex will move on to The Home Depot Centre in California to compete for $250,000 each!
Currently, the Catalyst Green Army team has athletes qualified for the Canadian Regional Championship, and our Team stands a great chance in the Team competition. Ted Fryia is ranked #2 in the WORLD in his Master's category, and several of our women all fit in the Top 60 in Canada. Wow.
 The best part of the Open so far has been the community (as usual): every time we compete, fans come out to cheer and take pictures. Members of the Catalyst family are already arranging hotel rooms to cheer in Toronto at Regionals. Fifteen members signed up at the last minute, and are doing very well. All in all, a great showing by Team Catalyst, and I'm proud to be a small part of the Team!

Ignite! Feels The Heat

Ignite! is a blue miracle. Nine months ago, Tyler was still part of the school system, following predetermined curriculum and trying to gain the attention of his kids. Now, he's gained the trust of psychologists, insurance funders, educators, researchers, and other Coaches. There is NO promotional tool in the world that can cause a program to grow as fast as Ignite! has; you can't buy the kind of responses we've been given from people who had given up. Brain injury, autism, ADHD, learning disability, or Enrichment ….this stuff works, and works wonders. THAT is why the program has exploded. THAT is why we're doing sessions in both gyms locally, and across North America online. And THAT is why none of us are getting much sleep!

We'll be rolling out our NeuroMotive Coach Certification in June, so that other Therapists and Coaches can help their OWN clients boost their cognitive abilities. But first: there's a textbook to finish! There's an Academy to build! There's a stroke victim, a coma victim, a car crash survivor, a child struggling in school….


Kids' Groups Exploding in Popularity!

Nearly every time we add a new member, we get the comment: "This is amazing. Why haven't I heard of this before NOW?" And the simple answer is: we don't advertise. We find that great people are drawn to us by other great people, and the result is that we're surrounded by people who wouldn't be anywhere else.

Adults try CrossFit; love it; and see the value of introducing their kids to exciting movement at a young age. Parents of kids in our group are invariably drawn to our training themselves, and the whole family benefits. Today, a six-year-old asked me, "So….what's the WOD?" That's slang for "Workout Of the Day," and she was watching her mom warm up while she balanced on the giant tire. When your family talks about the day's workout at the dinner table, you've got something awesome happening around your house.

TheRumble/Tumble group (above) combines basic gymnastics skills with elementary Jiu-Jitsu and kids' games.

Jiu-Jitsu is a ground-based grappling system that emphasizes fitness, wrestling for points, and flexibility.

Catalyst Kids is a mix of running, weightlifting, gymnastics, plyometrics…all the stuff that kids and teens need to get stronger, faster, and become well-rounded athletes. It hits the stuff that hockey misses, and gives the youth a lot of balance, which produces a more athletic teenager. It's great stuff.

Want to try it? Call us – 705-256-1344 – and we'll let you in for a day.

OnRamp – Do it once, or do it AGAIN!

  In the search for a better 'Boot Camp,' a lot of people find their way to OnRamp. Yes, they love it; yes, they get fit, and learn about nutrition, handstands, running, and all kinds of great stuff. But it's always surprising how many people want to do it AGAIN!

"But you're great at squatting!" we tell them. "You did pullups on the rings! You're ready for CrossFit!" Maybe it's the coaching, maybe it's the supportive group, maybe it's an unwillingness to jump right into CrossFit…but people LOVE OnRamp.

Looking for a spark to start your summer? This is it. Looking to rebuild a lost habit? Go again.

Bring a friend. Bring your teenager. Bring your spouse. Build something of yourself.

Want to repeat? Do it for half price – just call us to sign up. 705-256-1344 or email . Or sign up online by clicking here.

BaseLine Week

What's the greatest test of fitness in the world? This is something we wrestle with every year with the CrossFit Games. There are a LOT of different opinions: marathoners argue that it's endurance; powerlifters argue that it's pure strength. Somewhere in the middle lies the answer, but the best opinions have one thing in common: fitness is the ability to do something hard; recover; and do something different. And do them all well, pushing the limits of skill and capacity each time.

Every year, we do a little test of our own called BaseLine Week. We feature five standard CrossFit workouts as objective measurement tools, including "Angie" and "Fran." This year, though, we'll add a seventh day: The Mountain Maple 5k/10k Fun Run and Walk on St. Joseph Island.

It's not a test of speed, power, or prowess: it's survival, man. Yes, we hope you set a personal best on every workout, every day. Yes, we hope you run 5k in under 20 minutes at the end. But really, we're most excited to see who can do all six…

No need to pre-register. Just show up to any CrossFit Group. Better yet, do 'em all. May 23-29 2011.

To register for the Mountain Maple, you can sign up online here.

Geoff, from Traverse City, does Open Event 4.
Barbell Bettys / Fraternity Barbell

No matter what life throws at you, it's better to be strong. Want to be a good runner? Strength helps power you up those hills. Want to be crazy strong? Better have good technique. Want to avoid back injury? Better be able to pick stuff up and put it down…

Strong is the new skinny, as the saying goes; we'd rather have both. To date, we now have NINE women who can pick up 300lbs safely. We found several new women who can put 110lbs over their head in the last month. We found men who can do 40 reps of the Clean and Jerk with 135lbs in under 5 minutes. THAT is strength.

Starting your offseason training program? Strength is the foundation for power, speed, and power endurance. It's the basis for our Football program. It's the backbone of our Hockey training program. Strong is awesome.

In May, we'll offer Barbell Bettys Level I: an introduction to lifting weights. Pick up heavy stuff. Sit down and stand up. Lift stuff overhead. Sweetness.

Also, Fraternity Barbell Level I: learn to Powerlift, including the Squat, Deadlift, and Bench Press. GET STRONG. NOW. 

Women: sign up for the world-famous Barbell Bettys here.

Men: sign up for Fraternity Barbell here. Different paths, but the door is the same.


Mike's Beginner 5k Running Group at the Park


Capacity is a metabolic demand, and that means – hallelujah! – that its improvement is non-specific. You can build up the Capacity to run a half-marathon, for instance, by running only once or twice a week – or maybe, even, NOT AT ALL – and doing other exercises that carry the same metabolic demand. Even better: working at an anaerobic pace (very high intensity) bleeds over into the aerobic pathway…you can do half-hour CrossFit workouts, and build up the Capacity to run nonstop for over an hour. There are many examples here, and Enduro is our own take on the program.

On July 1, a few CrossFit coaches will attempt to demonstrate that a Marathon – the Holy Grail of the distance runner – is possible, using only CrossFit workouts as training. Will these folks win in Boston? No. But if it's possible to do a Marathon without Runners' World, and without knocking out back-to-back 30k sessions (or even more than a 10k run,) doesn't that suggest that the world's fastest could be even FASTER with CrossFit than without?
Common knowledge would have you believe that running endurance comes only through miles and miles of running. We take a different, more scientific approach: we break endurance apart. You need two things to do a duathlon; marathon; long ride; or big swim: Skill, and Capacity. Unfortunately, most runners spend little to no time on the Skill portion, believing that "…this is just the way I run." There's always a better way. And to that end, we teach quality movement – or Skill – first. THEN we build up the Capacity….and we don't just run to do it.

Personal Training

Vance Henson believes in coaching. You should too. Or else. In our world, we try to see everything as Good-Better-Best. Any exercise is Good. CrossFit is Better. Personal Training is Best. Boot Camps are a big rock in the gut. CrossFit is a shotgun. Personal Training is a rifle: a precise zeroing-in on the stuff you hate about yourself. As a woman told me this month, "EVERY woman has something they hate about themself." That's a shame, and it's our mission to give you Bright Spots – things you've DONE, instead of things you LOOK LIKE. Things you can take pride in. Things you can chalk up in the WIN column. Things you can enjoy more – like a walk down the aisle – because you LOOK better, and FEEL lighter.

Guys, typically, have more specific goals: "I want to bench press 350lbs." "I want to make the first string this year." "I want to learn to Clean and Jerk." And that's also great, because once we have Point 'B' in our sights, we just have to work backward.

Training with a Catalyst Trainer gives you 1-on-1 attention with weekly appointments AND flexibility with homework. You get knowledge, so that you can do this stuff on your own. You get tested. You get tickled, AND prodded. Our Personal Trainers have Personal Trainers, and nothing beats it.

Call around; meet other Trainers. Chat with us, and compare. The knowledge – and the value – is unmatched. Change your life.


Running Season is Now Open!

Before CrossFit, I never thought I'd like running. Coming in as a competitive powerlifter, running was just the stuff you did to get weak before a big event. But now, I can appreciate the beauty, as long as I don't have to do it too often. Yes, I'll be one of the Coaches attempting 26.2 miles on July 1, using CrossFit as my only training. But along the way, I'll do a couple of runs that we're sponsoring:

May 29 – Mountain Maple – 5k or 10k run on gorgeous St. Joseph Island. Start on grass, climb through well-packed, shady maple forest up a gentle slope around 'the Mountain.' Summit into a Heritage apple orchard, complete with rail fence that's over a hundred years old. A quick descent, and you're sprinting through antique farm equipment, back over the blurring green flats…beautiful. We're the lead sponsor this year. My six-year-old's favourite part: "Unlimited cookies for kids!"

You can even register online through our site.

June 11 – Our annual Midnight 5k to raise funds for the Green Army Relay For Life teams. Run 5k at midnight in the Park with all your Catalyst Family. More details to follow; last year's live band was amazing, despite the cold temperatures! Signup here online!

Quick Links…

Queen St. Facility

The Park (our CrossFit gym)

Personal Training


Join Our Mailing List!

This is Cam's score on Fight Gone Bad. Folks, that's a world-class score, and he did it the day after CrossFit Open Event 5. Wow. He's going places. Ray came second with 429 (also ridiculous.) 40 people competed, despite the CrossFit Open drawing 30 people every week who would normally have
participated . It also drew Steph, who's taken thousands of pictures for us in the last few weeks. While we love having her behind the camera, I'd rather see her in FRONT, doing what she does best….wouldn't you? Thanks, Parnzy. Now get back quick!



Send me to a buddy!

This email was sent to by |  

Update Profile/Email Address | Instant removal with SafeUnsubscribe™ | Privacy Policy.

Catalyst Fitness Inc. | 498 Queen Street East | Upstairs | Sault Ste. Marie | Ontario | P6A1Z8 | Canada