A CrossFit Coach’s Guide To Keeping Kids off the Couch

Some people only think of bulging muscles and perfected deadlifts when they think of CrossFit. Others think of burpees, wind sprints, and other hardcore workouts few can keep up with. What do CrossFit coaches know about kids you may ask? While you will see top-notch deadlifts and plenty of fit people at Northwest Crossfit gyms, their philosophy applies to more people than you may think. When it comes to fitness, our goal is to cater to those who want to live an active lifestyle and learn about functional fitness. While most of our programs cater to adults, we also offer programs for kids between 8 and 14. If you’re hoping to keep your kid more active this summer, here are a few strategies we find deliver great results.



You can sign kids up for activities, but getting them to actively participate, and most of all have a great time, can be a bigger challenge. A few strategies we use include:

Make It A Game

Musical chairs involves coordination and balance. Relay races get your heart rate up and make you stronger. When you make fitness a game, kids will often come off the court and not realize they’ve been running around for 30 minutes. From obstacle courses, to tag, and a lot more, fun games are a great tool to get your kids up and moving.

Tie It To Their Interests

If your kid likes soccer or basketball but is uninterested in exercise outside of practice, finding ways to encourage activity while playing to their interests is another strategy. If your kid is an active football player, running and speed drills can up their game. If your child is a swimmer, training on land can make them faster in the water.

Find a Role Model

From a young age, kids emulate those who they look up to. Having a positive influence can have a huge impact on kids loving sports. Whether that person is their coach, their sister, Mia Hamm or Michael Jordan, helping your child find a healthy role model who inspires your kid to want to be faster and stronger is a great way to keep them motivated.

Teach Them What it Feels Like To Achieve Their Goals

As a parent, you can sign your kid up for sports, drive them to practice, and cheer for them at games. The rest is up to them. Building a space where kids feel safe to try new things, challenge themselves, and work towards their goals is the best way to keep them interested in sports and healthy lifestyles in the long run. If kids build an understanding from a young age of what it means to work hard, push themselves, and understand how good it feels when they achieve their goals, that’s a surefire way to keep them coming back.


Kids spend nine months out of the year learning about reading, writing, math, and science. Summer is a chance for kids to get outside, explore, and learn outside of the classroom. A few benefits of getting your kid up and active include:

Creating Healthy Habits

A kid’s early years can have a big impact on the rest of their lives. Studies show kids who are active from a young age are more open to new things, are more motivated to set goals, and continue to be active throughout their lives. When you start instilling these ideas in kids from a young age, they can start to understand fitness as a way of life.

Building Strength and Confidence

When kids learn how to work towards their goals, they become stronger and more confident. Fitness is a great tool for empowering children, cultivating their skills, and helping them discover how strong they can be.

Teaching Them Grit

When your kid lives an active lifestyle, it increases physical and mental strength. In our sports camps for kids, we talk about grit and determination. We talk about winning and losing, and how to do both with integrity. We tell kids stories about what it means to to push themselves, work harder, and keep their heads up even when it’s hard. Then, we put those ideas into action by helping children find the strength to achieve their goals. Sports teach kids about setting goals, breaking boundaries, setting expectations and exceeding them. Those skills will serve them well for life.

NWCF represents at the Whiskey Throttle Throwdown

Big shoutout to everyone competing this weekend.
The whiskey Throttle Throwdown is a team event. Even if you are doing the individual event, WE ARE NWCF.  You have the support of everyone you train with and those competing on the other day, other heats are with you.
This is a competition to test your performance abilities. Some movements will be in your wheel house some may not be. No matter what your goal is the same – Move well, compete and support others. From organizing CrossFit events for over 7 years the moments I remember most are the moments when the crowd and all athletes band together to support the athletes giving their all. FULL EFFORT is all you can do once the workout begins.
Now there are many things you can control leading up tot he event and before your heats. Here is a list from my experience.
1. You are responsible. As an athlete it is ultimately your responsibility. You must ask if you do not know or are unsure.
2. Be ready for the unexpected. You will get a no rep, I am sure of it. Make sure you just stay focused and do satisfactory rep for the judge. This is a sport and you will not get every call. Stay calm through out any unplanned event.
3. Be on time for your heat! – Regardless of the time on the heat schedule always find out if the event is on time. Ask a head judge or event staff. There is usually some pre- heat check in process. Make sure you are familiar with the registration and heat check in process
4. Communicate with your judge. Every event is a specific test. Be sure to know the rules of the test and what the judges are looking for.
5. Bring your stuff.- make list the days before and make sure to pack the night before,. Shirt, socks, tape, roller, lax ball, bands, dowel (you borrow it from the gym). Bring a change of shirt/ shorts and socks for in between wods. You want to be fresh physically and mentally ready for the next workout.
6. Prep your food – You must know yourself and how your body processes food. Do not bring full on meals if you know you are not able to process meals after or before workouts. You must know your next heat time so you know exactly when and what to eat in order to fuel properly. A big part of the event is a calories in vs. calories out game. You must replace calories in order to perform at your optimal level. Do not try to be tough and only bring an apple and some sticks of jerky. Here are some suggestion for in between wods – apple sauce or baby food, sweet potatoes (smashed up), a nut butter of choice, banana It will be hot this weekend so some electrolytes are a must. I personally like real food for this like watermelon, raisins and canned tuna instead of using powders or chews. These foods serve many purposes for the body and are easy to transport.
7. Hydrate now til then. Be sure to start and end all your days with a tall glass of water. Have some fun with your water , put some sliced cucumbers or berries or your fruit of choice. Keep it ice cold and enjoy on game day.
8. Be sure to plan the afterparty!- You must celebrate with each other. Completing a CrossFit competition is a great accomplishment. BE PROUD!
9. This is a competition and a learning experience. If you plan on competing in the future make sure you are student looking for ways to improve for the next event. Every event will expose a weakness. It’s up to you to work on these areas.
I hope this helps someone.  I do not wish good luck in CrossFit.  You have done the work now it is time to see what you need to work on.
Get after it!!!!
Head Coach

How to Keep Your Kids Active During the Summer

Kids spend a lot of their time sitting in classrooms. While reading and writing are of utmost importance, it’s also important for kids to get outside, play, and learn about physical fitness and self care. When summer rolls around, it can be hard to keep your kids active, especially when tablets, TV’s, and phones are becoming ever more prevalent. This summer, instead of keeping your kid on the couch, think about making active time and hours spent outside a priority. Here are a few thoughts on how to keep your kids active during the summer.

Take a Hike

Teaching your kid to love nature from a young age will serve them throughout their lives. In the Pacific Northwest, there is no shortage of kid-friendly hikes that are a great way to get your kid off the couch and into nature. Additionally, the U.S. National Park Service offers a number of great deals including free entry for members of the military and fourth graders, as well as $10 lifetime passes for U.S. citizens over 62 years old. All of these passes include entry not only for the pass holder, but also for three additional adults.

Sign Kids Up for Activities While You’re At Work

Some kids love sports, and others are less inclined. Talking to your child about an activity they enjoy during the summer and finding a time when that is offered during the workday is a great way to keep your kid active when you can’t be at home with them. At Northwest Crossfit, we will be holding half-day Youth Fitness Camps in July and August at our Interbay Location, and we would love to have your children join us!

Get in the Water

Your kids can run around all year long, but many kids don’t often have the chance to get in the water. Seattle’s warm summer days are a great chance to teach your kids a love of the water and keep them active in the pool. Whether you’re preparing for your kids’ first swimming lessons or finding a summer swim team in your area, swimming is a great way to keep your kids fit during the summer.

If all else fails, use tech to your advantage

If you can’t beat em, join em. There is an app for everything these days, including apps that will get your kids outside and off the couch. Ranging from apps that will get your kids running around in a virtual maze, to those that teach kids about healthy eating, finding apps to get your kid up and moving might be an option for your family.

At Northwest Crossfit, we believe in active families and healthy lifestyles. To learn more about our programs for kids and families, visit our website today!

Why We Murph

For Crossfit veterans and newcomers alike, we’re excited to announcing this year’s annual Memorial Day Murph Challenge. Every year, Crossfit gyms all over take on this Hero WOD to honor men and women who have fallen while fighting for our country. This year’s challenge will take place at NWCF Greenlake at 10 a.m. on May 29, 2017.

What is a Hero WOD?

“These men were fathers, husbands and sons. They were brothers to their fellow SEALs. They were also CrossFitters. In their actions, these men embodied the values and spirit of true heroes, and to immortalize their courage, bravery and self-sacrifice, the CrossFit Hero workouts were created.”

–Russel Berger, Crossfit Trainer

At Northwest Crossfit, we believe in supporting our military and those who fight for our country, as many Crossfit workouts were developed in part to hone fitness for military personnel, first responders, firefighters, and other athletes requiring full body fitness.  Hero Workouts of the Day (WOD’s) are some of the most intense Crossfit workouts we have to offer. We take on these challenging workouts to honor those who have fallen in the line of duty. The “Murph” WOD includes:

  • 1 Mile Run
  • 100 Pull-Ups
  • 200 Push Ups
  • 300 Squats
  • 1 Mile Run

This workout is traditionally done while wearing a 20 pound vest. We encourage everyone to participate so modifications can be made to accommodate various levels of fitness!

Lieutenant Michael “Murph” Murphy

Lieutenant Michael P. Murphy was a Navy Seal who died on in Afghanistan on June 28, 2005. On that day, he and his team were in enemy territory, east of Asadabad in the Hindu Kush area of Afghanistan. Opposing forces detected their team and opened fire. According to his teammate’s account, Lt. Murphy moved into the open to call for backup. He lost his life but was able to convey his team’s location and save one of his comrades’ lives. The U.S. Navy commended him for his “undaunted courage, intrepid fighting spirit and inspirational devotion to his men in the face of certain death,” He was awarded a medal of honor in 2007.

Join Us

If you’d like to take part in this challenge, join us at our NWCF Greenlake location at 10 a.m. on Monday May 29, 2017. We will also be having a barbeque to follow the workout. To learn more about NWCF, connect with us on social media and visit our website today!

Memorial Day Weekend Gym Hours

Friday May 26, Normal Hours all locations

Saturday May 27th

  • Greenlake 8 am and 9 am All Levels Classes, 10 a.m. bootcamp
  • Bellevue 8 am Bootcamp, 9 am all levels class
  • Interbay 8 am Bootcamp, 9 am all levels class

Sunday May 28th, All locations CLOSED

Monday May 29th

  • Join us for the Annual Memorial Day Murph Event at 10 a.m., NWCF Greenlake
  • Interbay and Bellevue Closed

6 week Spring Challenge

The 6 week Spring Challenge

The Spring has sprung and summer is right around the corner!  It is time to come out of our shells and lose those winter coats.  We have put this community group together to help us kick it into a higher gear.  In order to lead effectively we have to lead from the front.  By raising your awareness we have also reenergized our staff and coaches to focus on the reason we are in this business.  WE LOVE TO HELP PEOPLE BE HEATLHY!!  We all need a little extra push and reminder sometimes.  Our 6 week Spring Challenge is designed as an accountability platform to help you focus on 3 areas of a healthy lifestyle:

  1. Focus on a fitness area to improve.  This can be a lift, a bodyweight movement or even flexibility.  These 6 weeks will be the opportunity to focus time towards improving this weakness.
  2. Learning how to create healthy eating habits.  Over the course of the 6 weeks we will help guide you through the nutrition maze.  There are several effective meal plans that one can follow and sometimes knowing where to start is the biggest challenge.  The video below breaks down the basics of understanding nutrition Macros (Protein, Carbs and Fat)
  3. Improving overall lifestyle habits such as managing stress, improving sleep and other areas that impact overall health.

The 6 week Challenge includes the following:

  1. Pre/post- InBody Body composition analysis tests
  2. Pre/ post – Performance test
  3. Weekly updates and guidence on topics to help you see positive results over the 6 weeks

Be Sure to watch the video below for full details of the challenge and breakdown of the Macrobility meal plan.

To sign up click the link below


Here are the steps for the challenge

#1 BMI Testing

Come in for a test within the first week to see what your Body Mass Index (BMI)

***Body Mass Index (BMI) is a person’s weight in kilograms divided by the square of height in meters. A high BMI, can be, an indicator of high body fatness. BMI can be used to screen for weight categories that may lead to health problems but it is not diagnostic of the body fatness or health of an individual

For more info on how to use BMI go to:


Weigh in 1 :

April 19th-20th @ Interbay
April 21st -22nd @ Greenlake
April 24th – 25th @ Bellevue

Weigh in 2

(final Weigh in) This is actually the 5th week (the next week is memorial week)

May 22nd-23rd @ Interbay
May 24th -25th @ Greenlake
May 26th – 27th @ Bellevue

Please coordinate with your Gym Manager for specific times, testing, etc…

Lamarr Smith Interbay
Tyler Searle Greenlake
Jason Lasko Bellevue

#2 Take “Before and After” photos:

Nothing is more fun than to see the changes in your body! Especially comments from friends and family on how great you look!
Here is an example of Russel’s “before” pics, so you have an idea of what type of before and after shots to do. He’s still working on his 6 weeks, so we don’t have his “after” photos yet. *photos will not be published anywhere without your permission

#3 Take our fitness test any time at any gym (this does not have to be scored by a Coach, this is individual integrity), however a Coach or Teammate may assist of you like. The first and last week of the challenge and then compare the two to see your progress:

1 Mile Run

Rest as needed and then perform the following:

1 Minute max pushups
rest 1 minute

rest 2 minutes and then perform
1 Minute max situps (butterfly)
rest 1 minute

rest 2 minutes and then perform
1 minute of max squats
rest 1 minute

Score for each and record results on the closed facebook 6 week challenge page.

Complete steps 1-3 in succession. Once everyone is complete, we will rollout the next phase.

Add some personalization!

In addition, we are all available for private instruction and coaching at an hourly rate in case you want to have more focused attention. Contact us at [email protected] to schedule a goal setting session privately tailored to your specific goals and needs!

Be patient and don’t get stressed about it!
And finally…Have fun working on yourself and changing your life in a short period of time!

So don’t get discouraged, it’s a game of consistency and you can do it!

Be proud of yourself for making a positive change in your life! Changing yourself will also change everyone around you!

Don’t forget we are in this with you and will be sending you all kinds of cool information and resources!

Good luck and remember we are all available to assist you in any way, so ask questions and know you have a community of support all around you!

Good luck and also please don’t forget, have fun

Register now for NWCF Summer Camp @ Interbay

2017 Dates and Times

Session 1 = July 10th – July 14th
Session 2 = July 17th – July 21st
Session 3 = July 24th – July 28th
Session 4 = July 31st – August 4th
Session 5 = August 7th – August 11th
Session 6 = August 14th – August 18th
Session 7 = August 21st – August 25th
Session 8 = August 28th – September 1st

Sign Up Now! 

Our Camps Include:

  • Fun Fitness games
  • Teamwork
  • Functional Calisthenics
  • Accuracy and agility drills
  • Coordination and balance exercises
  • And More

Reserve your kid’s spot for only $75

Cost: $150 per week

10 percent discount for multiple children

Two Age Groups: Boys and girls ages 8-10 and 11-13
All camps will be held at our Northwest Crossfit Interbay Location

Limited Space available, Reserve your kid’s spot today!

For more information please email [email protected]


Northwest CrossFit In Seattle Refined – All About Our Moms!

As any Northwest CrossFit member knows, parents make up a core part of our community… so much so that our fit and strong moms were recently the subject of a Seattle Refined article! The story details the Top Five Reasons that Moms Love CrossFit, and features Northwest CrossFit specifically for our parent/kid friendly environment. We are excited that parents in general feel encouraged and supported within our community, and proud of our moms who love Northwest CrossFit! Check out the article below:



Northwest Crossfit Cares

rec_cafe_logoFor the past several years Northwest CrossFit has hosted special Thanksgiving WOD’s to support Recovery Cafe.  This year the workout will be hosted at 9am Thanksgiving day at the Greenlake gym.  Recovery Cafe is a wonderful local recovery support center founded by long time NWCF member Killian Noe.  Check out more information about Recovery Cafe here: http://www.recoverycafe.org/about

We all love Killian here and encourage you to support Recovery Cafe in any way possible!

Make a Thanksgiving contribution to Recovery Cafe in support of those who are suffering homelessness, addiction and/or other mental health challenges by clicking on the below link:

The mechanics of your body

Imagine your body is a violin. In order to function properly and to be able to create, all the strings need to be in tune. It is crucial that your body works properly so that you are able to enjoy life and to achieve your goals. Would it surprise you to find out that your thinking is connected to fitness? That your productivity is linked with your mental health? The secret of enjoying life and getting the energy you need to do great things is balance. Now, balance is different for each person but in order to achieve it you need to find out exactly how mental health, fitness, productivity and thinking are connected.

The Universe within your body

Each body is different and each body is a Universe that connects each of its elements. As John F. Kennedy once said, “Physical fitness is not only one of the most important keys to a healthy body; it is the basis of dynamic and creative intellectual activity”. As you well know, our moods are often influenced by the chemistry in our brain. Whenever doing physical exercise, our brain gives off endorphins which are responsible for our cheerful moods. But this is not the only advantage of physical exercise. In fact, there are many other advantages which you may not know about.

Fitness will help develop your multitasking skills and your logic. When doing physical exercise, your brain is also doing intense thinking in order to develop your senses. Using the logic of movement in order to achieve the best results possible, you will also exercise your overall logic and you will find out how to get the best results in everything you do.

  • • Fitness helps your creativity. While your rational part of the brain is preoccupied with the movements you make, focusing on the physic, your creative side runs freely, offering you valuable insights and helping you develop creative ideas which are not clouded by your rational part of the brain.
  • • Fitness clears your mind and helps you focus better. How? Well, it is quite simple. When doing physical exercise, your brain is focused on every move you do and every single move is connected to a greater goal. Using this type of logic, you can enhance your focus and get to apply this type of thinking in everything you do.
  • • Fitness lets you connect to your body in a way that you really get to understand what it means to inhabit your body. We are aware that we have a body, but do we really inhabit our body? Are we really aware of its importance and how everything is connected? Can you honestly say that you feel you inhabit your body? Well, fitness helps you do that because, through physical exercise, you become conscious of every muscle in your body and how you can coordinate your moves in order to achieve your goals.
  • • Fitness enhances your productivity. The principle of physical exercise is to save your energy in order to get to the end of the exercise. Have you noticed how, in competitions, athletes tend to save their energy for the last 50 meters? They do so because they have learned that if you want to achieve your goals, you need to pace yourself and think strategically. This strategy you can use in everything you do and a great way to learn it is through physical exercise.

As you can see, your body is a Universe and everything is connected. Your job is to take care of those connections, to develop them and to make the best of them. Nurture both your brain and your body and you will achieve balance.

Physical intelligence

I am sure you have heard people talking about emotional or social intelligence. But did you know there is also a physical intelligence? In the book called Sensation, psychologist Thalma Lobel focuses on the theory of embodied cognition (source: http://www.psychologytoday.com/). This theory states that our body is able to direct our mind in the same way our mind directs our body.


As you can see in the diagram above, the base for every type of intelligence and for achieving the balance and inner peace is the physical intelligence. Enhance it through physical exercise by checking out the North West Crossfit in Seattle, WA or Bellevue, WA, and you will enhance your ability to develop all the others.

The effects of stress

One of the most known advantages of physical exercise is that it helps you eliminate stress. But do you really know what this means? Can you truly understand the effects of stress so that you are able to appreciate the miracles achieved through fitness?


As you can see in the infographics above, the neuropeptides are responsible for connecting your mind with your body. Those are linked with your endocrine system, with your autonomic nervous system and with your immune system. When being stressed all those systems malfunction severing this connection with tragic results both for your body and mind. Eventually, chronic heart issues or even cancer may appear. When doing physical exercise, you are eliminating the root cause for all of those problems: stress. If we look at it, this is truly a miracle and it is one you can achieve by yourself just by exercising regularly.

In the end, if you truly want to understand how your mind and body are connected, take a look at the diagram below.


The common ground for emotional, mental, spiritual and physical health is fitness, because, as you have learned, your physical intelligence is the headstone of everything you want to achieve. If you are not a big fan of physical exercise, it just means that you haven’t found your personal style.

Movement is part of our human nature and all you have to do is find out what is the best physical exercise for you. At http://www.nwcrossfit.com/ there are specialists that can help you with that, all you have to do is visit the website and contact them. Whether you live in Bellevue, WA or Seattle, WA, you can benefit from their help in order to learn how to integrate physical exercise into your life.

Take care of your body and mind through physical exercise. After all, if you didn’t have a body, how would you be able to feel and to do everything you want to do in this life?