Monthly Archives: December 2010

CrossFit Merge Gym Guide

Hey CrossFitters, if you’re like most people, you probably aren’t too familiar with all the equipment we have at the gym.  So here’s a picture tour guide of the gym’s toys.

Kettlebells, swing them, lift them, and also place them in their proper place when done.

Not sure how much it weights, check the writing on the kettlebell.

Plyometric boxes come in 3 sizes

Bumpers, you can only a drop a barbell when these are one them.  Be sure to stack them back correctly and neatly.  Thanks.

Here are the iron plates, different from the rubber bumper plates above.

Barbells are the most used piece of equipment we have.  We have 3 different sizes and weights for the barbells.  They are colored coded with tape.

Need help with your pull-ups or dips?  Use a band.  Here’s some info that will help you choose the right one.

Jump rope, get the right one and the right length.



We do in fact run in CrossFit.  So here’s a map of our run courses.


Now who’s ready to WOD?  3…2…1…Go!


Beginner and Intermediate Level Classes

What’s the difference between the classes?

Beginner Classes will focus on the 9 fundamental movements of CrossFit, basic gymnastics (pull-ups, push-ups, dips), the kettlebell swing, wall ball shot, thruster, as well as running, rowing, and jumping rope.

Classes will still include a Warm-up, a Skill, and a WOD, but the classes will focus on  fundamental movements in order for someone to build a solid foundation for basic movement.

Make no mistake, the classes and workouts will still be hard, as the intensity has not changed, but all the movements will be doable for someone very new to CrossFit.

Intermediate Classes will also focus on the above but also include Olympic lifts and more technical gymnastics movements like handstands, muscle-ups, and levers.  Workouts may include heavier loading of weights and more than one technical movement in a WOD, e.g. clean and jerks coupled with double-unders in a WOD.

Am I a beginner or intermediate CrossFitter?

Beginners are those that have recently started their CrossFit journey.  Your training sessions are fun, exciting, and challenging but there is A LOT to learn.  You are starting to recognize certain terms and names of exercises, but you still can’t identify all the acronyms (SDHP, HSPU, P/PP/PJ, OHS, etc). You are beginning to recognize and properly execute the 9 fundamental movements but you know they need work.  You scale about 90% of the workouts and skills like muscle ups, handstand push-ups, and the Olympic lifts are very challenging. This phase will usually last around 2-3 months but could last longer.

Intermediate classes are for those that have been CrossFitting consistently for 4+ months, but time alone is not a determinate (it could be longer or shorter).  You have worked CrossFit into your regular, weekly schedule and you consistently come to class 3 to 5 times a week.  You can identify all 9 fundamental movements and all the crazy acronyms are finally making sense, in fact you can identify them at first glance.  At this stage you could probably help teach a newbie how to do things like kipping pull-ups, air squats, and how to use the rower.  You can do about half the WODs as prescribed and skills like handstands, ring work, and the Olympic lifts are improving a lot.

How do I graduate from Beginner to Intermediate?

Moving from the Beginner Level to the Intermediate Level means recognizing CrossFit’s 9 fundamental movements(SquatFront SquatOverhead SquatPress,Push PressPush JerkDeadliftSumo Deadlift High Pull,and Medicine Ball  Clean) and also knowing which weights to use for some workouts.

Successful graduation from the Beginner Level to the Intermediate Level means passing 8 out of the 10 skills on the Beginner Level test with proper form and control.

Beginner Level Test

The Beginner Level Test is not designed to be difficult, but it does test to see if you are proficient in the BASIC movements and training of CrossFit.

You can perform the skills all at once, one a day, one a week, it doesn’t matter when so long as you can pass 80% of the skills with proper form and control.

Once you pass the Beginner Level Test, you have graduated from the Beginner classes and are free to attend ANY class on the schedule.  Awesome, right?

How long will I be in Beginner Classes?

That depends on you.  If you have a strong athletic background, eat healthy, get plenty of rest, and show up consistently at least 3 times a week, you could pass the Beginner Level Test in less than a month.

If you show up sporadically and haven’t seriously worked out in a long time, it will obviously take much longer.

Which classes can I attend?

Beginners are allowed to attend the Beginner classes, the All Levels classes, and Open Gym classes.

Intermediate CrossFitters are free to attend any class on the schedule.

Why have different level classes?

This class structure is designed to place our athletes in a class that’s appropriate for their level of fitness and experience.  Beginners are going to learn more, make more progress, and see better results working with people similar to their level of fitness.  The same holds true for intermediates.

Let’s be honest, CrossFit can be pretty intimidating.  It’s new, involves technical and athletic movements, strange acronyms, and heavy weights.  Most of us haven’t done these movements before doing CrossFit, and you can easily see how someone new can feel pretty overwhelmed in a class with a group of people that very seasoned at CrossFit.  

Put simply, this is the best way for you to make progress and get results.  

Just a Few Items Left

It’s been an exhausting couple of days fixing up the gym.  Cleaning, picking up more equipment, assembling the new equipment, and on and on.  Just to get some perspective, here are some before and after photos of the 1517 Railroad Street warehouse.


They either didn’t mind or were too polite to complain about the less than ideal workout conditions; I think it was the latter.


Post impressions to comments.

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Weightlifting Percentages

Not sure what 85% of your 1 rep max is?  Then use these handy charts.  

Weightlifting Percentages (45 lb bar)

Weightlifting Percentages (33 lb bar)

Don’t be afraid to embrace the barbell lifts.

CrossFit Merge Membership Terms

Here are the membership terms and conditions for CrossFit Merge.

EFT Request and Authorization:  Client hereby authorizes CrossFit Merge or its assigns to make periodic charges or withdrawals (“EFT Authorization”) from the account used to pay the initial payment described above or the account listed below or replacement account designated by Client and accepted by CrossFit Merge for payment of any and all fees, late charges, costs, expenses or any other monies due to CrossFit Merge under the terms and conditions of this Agreement.  Client understands that Client is entitled to notice of all varying charges and withdrawals under the EFT, but Client waives the right to receive prior notice for charges or withdrawals made with respect to any uncollected payments or portions of the balance due described above and the corresponding service charges, both of which Client agrees are not varying charges or withdrawals.  Client may change the account designated herein upon thirty (30) days written notice to, and approved by, CrossFit Merge.  Client may timely notify the financial institution in control of Client’s account to terminate this Request, buy such notification will constitute a default and may cause all sums under this Agreement to be due and payable immediately together with all costs of collection to extent permitted by law.  CrossFit Merge or its assigns reserves the right to add the following fees to the Client’s account balance should any of the following occur.  Re-submit unpaid EFT draft-ten dollars, unpaid EFT draft (after re-submittal)-fifteen dollars, unpaid credit card debit-fifteen dollars, unpaid customer check-fifteen dollars.  Payments received more than ten (10) days after the due date are assessed a late fee-fifteen dollars.

FITNESS PROGRAM MEMBERSHIP AGREEMENT SERVICES.  The service being requested is for coaching designed to progress you toward ELITE FITNESS.  The agreement is for coaching services over a specific period of time during which the member is eligible to partake in any and all activities in accordance with their membership package.  This is NOT an agreement for a specific number of classes, seminars, or coaching lessons during the agreed upon period. 

REFUNDS:  No refunds shall be made for services purchased, except as specifically provided in the Agreement.

PAYMENT & BILLING:  Client has two options for payment: (1) Payment in full may be made for all services, or  (2) Monthly payment by credit card or EFT per the above stated terms.  Each month on this date, the monthly payment is charged to the Client’s credit card, or deducted from the Client’s account

CLIENT’S RIGHT TO CANCEL:  The Client may not terminate or cancel the Agreement except as follows:  (1)  If by reason of death or disability, Client is unable to receive all CrossFit Merge services for which Client has contracted, Client and Client’s estate shall be relieved from the obligation of making payment for services other than those received or obligated prior to death or the onset of disability (subject to signed doctor’s note regarding the nature of the disability); and (2) In the event the Client moves further than 25 miles from CrossFit Merge, Client may terminate this agreement by supplying proof of new residence. If client has prepaid any sum for services, so much of such sum as is allocatable to services client has not taken shall be refunded.

CLIENT’S RIGHT TO HOLD:  The Client may, for periods of one week or longer, “put on hold” the Agreement if the Client is out of town or injured and unable to attend classes.  The request to place the Agreement on hold must be submitted via email at least one week prior to the hold dates (no retroactive holds) and must include an end date (or return date) with the following exceptions:  Client is injured or sick, or Client is pregnant and/or has had a baby.  In both cases the return date will be mutually determined based on the recovery and recuperation of the Client.

CLIENT’S DEFAULT:  Client shall be deemed in default of this Agreement upon the failure to comply with any of the terms and conditions of the Agreement, including, but not limited to, the obligation to make any payment as and when due.  Upon default, CrossFit Merge shall have all rights and remedies available, including termination of this Agreement and institution of an action for all applicable damages.  If CrossFit Mergedelays or refrains from exercising any rights under this Agreement, CrossFit Merge does not waive, nor will CrossFit Merge lose those rights.  IfCrossFit Merge accepts late or partial payments from the buyer, CrossFit Merge does not waive the right to receive full and timely payments and other charges due under this Agreement.

SUCCESSORS AND ASSIGNS:  Client agrees that all terms and conditions of this Agreement shall be binding upon the heirs, Personal Representatives, lawful successors, and assigns of Client, and anyone claiming by or through Client.

ENFORCEABILITY:  The parties agree that if any provision or portion of this Agreement is declared void and unenforceable, such provision or portion of a provision shall be deemed severed from this Agreement, which shall otherwise remain in full force and effect.  However, Client specifically agrees all the terms and conditions are to be enforced and Client specifically waives any statute or other right of any type, which would invalidate the enforceability of any provision or portion of a provision of this Agreement.

GOVERNING LAW:  This Agreement shall be governed and enforced in accordance with the laws of the State of California.  In the event litigation is necessary to enforce any of the terms and conditions of this Agreement, CrossFit Merge and Client agree that the venue for such action shall exclusively be Los Angeles County, California.

ATTORNEY FEES:  In the event either party finds it necessary to commerce litigation or other court action to enforce the terms and conditions of this Agreement, the prevailing party in such litigation or court action shall be entitled to receive their actual attorney’s fees incurred, together with court costs, and other charges from the other party as a part of any ruling or judgment.

Free CrossFit WODs

Here are CrossFit workouts you can do on your own.  You won’t need much, usually a place to run, perhaps a pull-up bar (which are easy enough to find at a local park), a jump rope perhaps, and a stop watch.  3…2…1…Go!

Comprehensive List of Bodyweight WODs

Membership FAQ

I am signed up for 2 classes a week and missed one of the classes, can I make it up next week?

This is not a per-class program.  If you are signed up for 2 or 3 classes per week and you miss a week, there is no such a thing as a make up (i.e. – when you’re enrolled in a college-level accounting class and you miss a class, you simply miss it – you don’t get an extra class the next week).  We do this primarily because it works best for you!  Our intention is for you to establish a commitment to your fitness – even when you’re not here.  Time away from the gym is a great opportunity to take something you’ve learned and apply it to a workout on your own – or try one of ours at

I want to try out some additional classes during the week, can I do that?  

You sure can.  If you’d like to test out coming in more frequently during the week, we offer drop-in class rates to our members.    

I’m going on vacation, can I put my membership on hold?

You may put your membership on hold for periods of 1 week or longer – which must be done 7 days in advance via email of the hold date.  Also include the start date and end date of when you’d like your membership to be on hold.  Additionally, you must be physically out of town and unable to attend classes in order to place your membership on hold; you cannot put your membership on hold if you are busy with work and cannot make it in.  Remember that your billing continues while you’re on hold – and the days of your hold will get added to the end of your membership.

Our Location


Getting There

Chalkboards are on the wall as are the flags.  Most of the day my dad and I spent working on the olympic lifting platforms.  These were deceptively hard to construct and move.  The yellow baseboard serves two purposes: 1. to act as a trip guard 2.  to drive me crazy trying to get them cut and assembled.  But it was well worth it.

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Construction Progress Report


Paint Walls – completed

Put down matting – check (that was a total ass kicker)

Build olympic lifting platforms – 90% done

Install clock – easy peasy

Chalkboards – double check

Hang U.S. and Marine Corps flags – done tomorrow

Assemble Rogue pull-up rig – done and lookin good

Setup all the new equipment – Monday’s task

Lots of progress but still a lot to do to make it awesome.

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