OPEX ONE August 28, 2015

opex one aug 28

August 28, 2015
Coach Brian Foley

Peak For Competition

Throughout the off- season majority of athletes competing in the sport of fitness are going to be in accumulation.  Spending months and months building a wider base for the upcoming season. As we get into to the later months of the year I encourage my athletes to participate in one or two competitions that we can prep for.  This allows for small peaks within an accumulation phase.  Below are two skeletons of what an accumulation week may look like and what an intensification week may look like.


–       Competitive athlete, wants to make it to regionals
–       Competing in the 2015 Granite Games.


ACCUMULATION: This is her base training. Large volumes of general training focused on specific goals.



Row Repeats/ Run Repeats


A. Back Squat %
B. Clean Pull/DL /Complex
C. Glute Hinge


Grinder Knee Flexion/ Midline Stability



AM –off


A. Jerk Intensive
B. CP Upper Body Vert. Pull
C. EMOM Upper Body Push Work
D. Gymnastic Density Sets


Scap Work



45-60 Min Easy Aerobic



AM-Swim Easy


A. Back Squat – Intensive
B. Snatch Pull/DL /Complex
C. EMOM Bending +Gymnastic


Lactic Power Sets




Assault Bike  30/30 Repeats



A. Upper Body Hor. Push /Pull
B. Scap Work
C. Strict Gymnastic Sets
D. Muscle up Skills+ Upper Pushing


Density Sets




A. Back Squat – Dynamic
B. Bending


MAP Training






SUN- off


INTENSIFICATION: 4 weeks out from the Granite Games, volume is dropped and intensity increases.




Row Repeats


Run Repeats



A. Back squat – Intensive
B. Snatch / Clean – MAX
C. Odd Object


Muscle Endurance Sets

W/ Constant Movement






Skill EMOM

W/ Barbell + Advanced Gymnastic



Lactic Endurance Sets



45-60 Min Easy Aerobic




Warm up: Handstand Walk Skills  – 10 min

A. Split Jerk – Moderate
B. EMOM – Touch and Go Work
C. Front Squat/Back Squat Intensive


Easy Aerobic – W/ Ski Erg




Comp Simulation #1


Comp Simulation #2




Comp Simulation #3


Skill training


Comp Simulation #4


To work with Coach Foley, please contact our Exclusive Coaching Coordinator Erin Carter to set up a consultation!

August 27, 2015

AUG 27

Establishing Gym Culture With Remote Coaching

In the past few months, I’ve made a big transition after finishing the first level of the OPEX CCP. I’ve sold my gym and have transitioned to 100% remote coaching, using the principles I’ve learned during the past few years in working with OPEX.

During this transition, I have noticed one really big difference between on-site coaching & remote coaching and it might not be what you think it is. (more…)

August 26, 2015

ag aug 26

Deep Embodiment of The Love of Fitness

I’ve been going through a period of deep reflection as of late.  Those coaches out there who have gone through the Life Coaching module will appreciate that I am in the “Reflection” stage of the Four Seasons of Learning.  

One of the ways I spend time reflecting is through communicating with like-minded friends, colleagues and coaches who also like to play with ideas.  The art of playing with your thoughts is a concept ingrained in me by many of my mentors, most notably Bernie Novokowsky.   (more…)

August 25, 2015

aug 25 2015

What Do The BEST Athletes Eat?

What is your fuel of choice when it comes to supporting or recovering from your training?

Peanut butter and chocolate milk? A particular protein powder? Gatorade? Perfect Food Bars? Ice cream?

Ask 10 different people, and you will get 10 different answers. (more…)

August 24, 2015

aug 24

Getting Gymnasty

Its always a challenge getting the message across to people interested in learning gymnastics.

In my experience most people see and want to do gymnastics elements, but havent the vaguest conception of the work it has taken to achieve these skills.

I have hosted a six week introduction to gymnastics course in the past and have had athletes disappointed that they hadnt achieved a muscle up by the end, bearing in mind they didnt attend all the sessions and the only gymnastics they did was during each session I taught.    (more…)

August 23, 2015


10 Tips To Relax On Rest Days

Stress can be brutal, heck it could even kill you.

And let’s face it, we are a stressed society.

Check out these facts*:

  • 1 in 5 Americans experience ‘extreme stress’ and 3 in 4 report experiencing at least one symptom of stress in any given month (i.e. lack of sleep, emotional stress, unhealthy foods, etc.)
  • Stress is the primary cause of 60% of all human illness and disease
  • 3 out of 4 doctor’s visits are for stress-related ailments
  • The average American gets 10 ‘vacation days’ and 8 national holidays as part of their job (The average worker in a country, like France, gets 7-weeks)
  • 90% of Americans are stressed over money

What stressors do you face in your daily life?

Even the stressors you may not necessarily view as ‘stress’ can have a great impact on your quality of life and health, such as:

  • Your progress in your daily training can be suppressed
  • Your sleep can substantially decrease
  • High caffeine consumption to “combat” stress symptoms such as fatigue and lack of mental acuity
  • Over-reliance on energy drinks, supplements and shakes for nutrition sources (as opposed to real food)
  • Poor digestion

However, because they have become your ‘norm’, you may not even realize why or how they are keeping you (and your body) stressed.

How does stress specifically harm your body?

When stress becomes a regular occurrence in your daily life, the hypothalamus (brain command center) is activated and triggers your adrenals to release cortisol: the stress hormone. Some stress is a normal part of life, and cortisol is a hormone that is intended to be released in a specific rhythm throughout the day (for instance, high in the mornings when you awake, and gradually decline throughout the day).

However, with chronic stress, an influx of cortisol happens, and this influx of cortisol leaves your body with some not-so-pretty side effects, including:

  • Leaky gut (intestinal permeability)
  • Heightens sugar and hunger cravings
  • Impairs your body’s ability to burn fat and decreases your metabolism
  • Raises your blood sugar levels
  • Triggers poor immunity
  • Imbalances your hormone levels
  • Provokes depression, anxiety and mood imbalances
  • Suppresses your HPA-axis (hormonal imbalance)

…Just to name a few.

While total stress avoidance is realistically unavoidable in life…that’s what rest days are for.

Use your rest days with this intention in mind: De-stress.

After all, if you are not incorporating some form of stress management on a regular basis, you will sabotage all of your best efforts with diet, exercise and supplements.

Here are 10 Ways to Alleviate Stress on Rest days

  1. Get outside. Fresh air does a body good. Get some Vitamin D in the great outdoors.
  1. Actively do something out of routine. Something you don’t typically do. Rock climbing. Paddle boarding. Swimming. Hiking. Biking. A yoga class. Get outside the box and just do something for daily movement.
  1. Socially or creatively do something out of routine. Check out a festival or event going on in your city; attend a Meet-Up; go to listen to a local band; take a stab at pottery making; visit the local animal shelter and play with the pups; grill out at the park; explore the shops on a popular touristy street in your town; again, get out of routine for a few hours.
  1. Cook something delicious. Pull out that recipe book collecting dust, or Google search a Paleo-inspired dish you’ve been craving (i.e. pizza, ice-cream, tacos, etc.) and have fun with it!
  1. Give meditation a try. Check out 8-Minute Meditation to get started!
  2. Give back. You are always on a schedule, and have a laundry list of to-dos, that it can be easy to forget there is a bigger world out there—outside ourselves. Serve lunch or dinner at a homeless shelter, tutor or mentor kids one day per week, visit a nursing home and play Bingo with some older (and wiser) folks. Volunteering is linked to improved health and decreased stress.
  1. Clean it. Be productive and de-stress at the same time. Clearing the clutter can help clear the mind. Organize your closet or that stack of papers sitting on your desk. Deep clean your bathroom tiles. Wash your sheets. Use that rest day to go a little extra mile in getting life together (to promote less stress throughout the week).
  1. Connect. Intentionally schedule time on your rest days that you may otherwise be at the gym to connect with friends or your social network (in person). According to a recent Gallup poll, the happiest people in the world are those who have 6-7 hours of social connectivity in their days.
  1. Self-care, specifically sleep!  You know you need it…but how often do you do it? This could look like anything from a massage or ‘body work’, to a pedicure, facial, haircut, ice bath, mobility session…really giving your body some nice R & R.
  1. Relax your mind. Check out from the thinking, planning, achieving, striving, to-doing you do on a daily basis and take some time for a much needed ‘brain break’. Read something, just for the enjoyment of it, watch a documentary or movie you’ve been meaning to see, tap into your inner creative (painting, writing, photography)—do things that allow your mind to just be in the moment.

It is so important to do these things consistently because they allow your to be mindful and present – when you are worrying about everything else in life you are building stress.  When you are enjoying something that interests you and your mind is fully engaged in that you are relaxing.  You can’t always be “on” with work and challenging activities because it will burn you out over the long run

August 22, 2015


Corrective Exercise: An Individual Approach

Picture this: 5:30 p.m. on a Monday evening at the gym. Energy is high and the class is full. 12-20 regular gymgoers show up to take on whatever daily workout is programmed on the whie board for the day.

3 rounds for time:
10 Clean & Jerk
3 Rounds of “Cindy” (5 pull-ups, 10 push-ups,  15 air squats) (more…)

OPEX ONE August 21, 2015

opex one aug 21

August 21, 2015
Coach Michael Bann

Quality Strength and Conditioning versus CrossFit

Patrick Casey is a freshman athlete of mine.  His mother hired me during 8th grade to work with him in hopes of preparing him for his upcoming hockey season in the 9th grade.  I’ve had a lot of success with various athletes throughout my years as a coach, and it always has derived from an individual assessment.  From there, the program I write is based on the information gathered in the assessment.  I’ve seen successful assessments take 10 minutes and some take a few sessions to conduct.  In Patrick’s case, I took a few sessions to “figure” him out. (more…)