Recently the young son of one of our new members has been coming in after his Jiu Jitsu classes to watch his Mom finishing up her CrossFit workouts.  It struck me that they were not the only Mother-Son pair in the gym that day as two mats over Iron Dam and her son Master Dray were hard at work.  And just outside waiting for the Open gym was my own Mom getting ready to work out with my wife and I.

It also reminded me of my first visit to the gym.  My Mom’s sister, my Aunt Rita, took me when I was 15 years old to Ron’s gym in Toronto where she was a member.  Back then 15 year olds weren’t even allowed in the gym but Ron, the owner, a gruff, tough older man working the front desk told me “If you’re with your Aunt, you’re alright!”

The gym was filled with buff men and women in tank tops and finger-less gloves wearing wide leather weightlifting belts to bicep curl and calf raises.  As Rita took me around the whole circuit teaching me how to pump iron, intimidatingly brawny men would approach us, look down at me, a scrawny under-sized teen, and make some remark about how cute it was that my petite, pretty blond aunt (who was lifting much more weight than me) was teaching me how to pump iron.  I also attended aerobics classes with her (there were no men there) and later she took me to a bodybuilding competition that some of the guys from the gym were competing at.  So it was my Aunt who first introduced me to fitness culture and here I am now 33 years later watching Moms and Dads introduce their kids to fitness in my own gym.

Tomorrow my friend The Colonel will bring his two teen daughters to their first CrossFit group class.  This past Monday I started training my friend Jay-G’s 74 year old Mother.  Another friend – a fitness industry expert – visiting us last year on his way through town told me that many of the hundreds of gyms he’s visited over the years have tried to create a family culture that is inclusive to all ages but that we were the first he’s seen to actually succeed.  High praise!

It’s a reciprocal relationship, we can teach the younger generation the value of fitness and they remind us how to play.  We model aging gracefully and healthy competition and they model the joy of movement and enthusiasm for life.  We enrich each other’s lives and support each other’s health.

At Empower fitness is a family affair for all ages and it is great to see Sprite, the youngest member of our coaching team, who joined us at Empower in 2014 at the age of 17, building on our family tradition with her new Saturday Family Game Day starting 2pm this Saturday open to Empower members and their families.  I for one am excited to participate!

The wait is over Family Game Day information has arrived. Capture the flag at Alma park 2pm Saturday July 25th.

First things first, Game Day is going to begin with splitting the group up into two teams. Remember
Capture the Flag is most fun with more people, so please register through me [email protected] or through our Crossfit Empower Zen Planner app. The whole family is invited and our games are suitable for all levels and ages.

The hour will begin with a short relay warm up. The technique portion will allow for any questions and answers also a quick review of movement points of performance.  The park workout of the day will be a short Tababta with two different movements.  2 rounds of 4 minutes for each movement.

Then, let the games begin! We will play until the end of the hour and then proceed to pack up.  Traditionally capture the flag is done with a big group of people and there is tagging involved. Keeping it
simple, considering the appearance of tagging is not acceptable during these times everyone
participating will have a tied coloured ribbon around themselves. Each member can touch or grab the
ribbon in order to catch opposing team members. Each team must hide their flag in a visible location. If
teams choose to have someone guarding the flags they must stand at least 6ft from the flag and
continue to run in place. Whichever team first captures the opposing team’s flag and brings it safely to
their home territory without getting ribbon tagged will WIN the game.

IMPORTANT: If you are the person caught and tagged you must bear crawl to the territory line and
complete 10 good athletic burpees (no cheating reps). I, the impartial judge, will be watching.  The cost to play is $10 per family. The movements will be accessible to every individual who shows up or modifications can be made. Spread the word out to our neighbourhood because you don’t want to miss this summer fun event. The more players participating in this wild game the bigger, better and more fun everyone will have.

See you all there!

Friday WOD
Barbell or Barbell Substitute
PVC pipe or substitute

Warm Up:
1 min Full Body Rock
1 min Samson Lunges
1 min Shoulder Pass Throughs
1 min Overhead Squats

Tech 1: Girard Warm Up

WOD 1: Snatch 1-1-1-1-1

Tech 2: Clean & Jerk

WOD 2: C&J 1-1-1-1-1

Cool Down:
Upper Body half Rolls
Lower Body Half Rolls
Scap Rock