Battle Prep

October 22nd, 2014 by admin

Battle for the Bell competitors…..the event is finally coming this weekend!!!! The heats have been announced and are below. Doors open at 8 am, judges meet at 8:30 and the athlete briefing for the workout and movement standards is at 8:50. Be sure to get there by then. If anyone is interested in serving as a judge, contact Mike or Dan and CrossFit Strongtown at 203-232-3588. The captain of each team has received an email with news concerning parking, a few of the movement standards, etc. Please contact your team captain if you want that information.

A reminder to take anything you need for the competition with you before Saturday (lifting shoes, jump ropes, wrist wraps, headbands, protein shakes, kill cliff, etc.) WE WILL BE CLOSED SATURDAY DUE TO THE EVENT. For anyone who wants to check the action and cheer our athletes, we will be at CrossFit Strongtown all day Saturday, 1432 Old Waterbury Road, Southbury. Just be sure that you don’t park in front of the doors of other businesses in the building.

We are also going to take this opportunity to do a little gym cleaning. We have a feeling there is some OLD stuff still hanging out in the cubbies in both the gym area and the club room. You have until Sunday to grab ALL of your stuff. Anything that is left in the gym will be assumed to be abandoned and given to Good Will next week. Starting next week, each of our members will be allowed to keep ONE pair of shoes at the box. Thanks for your help and consideration everyone!

Saturday Battle for the Bell Heats: BB = Big Bell, LB = Little Bell

Heat 1 The 4 Horsemen (BB) Strongtown Injured Reserve (BB) Swoleasarus Flex (BB) Nat Miller (BB) You Cook We’ll Clean (LB) High Class Hook’ers (LB) Hakuna MaSQUATA…it means big booty (LB) The FourFits

Heat 2 Burpee Babes and Two Jerks (BB) Red, Wod, and Blue (BB) Old Guys & Thunder Thighs (BB) 203 Bell Masters (LB) Hook’d on Snatches (LB) Halo 1 (LB) Hellz Bellz (LB)

Heat 3 The 2nd Amendments (BB) Nickel Slots (BB) Strongtown (BB) In 203 We Thrust (BB) Guns & Buns (LB) Snatch & Sniff (LB) Matzo Balls & Meatballs (LB) Baby Got Back Squat (LB)

Heat 4 Squats in the Curl Rack (BB) 203 Power Rangers (BB) Darkhorse (BB) Boobies and Snatches (BB)Booties and the Beastmode (LB) Honey Badger don’t Care (LB) Big Balls, Little Bell (LB)

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Kasey locking out a press

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The 4 pm crew starting their rowing intervals

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Dan didn’t know what his PR was……I think it’s pretty fast judging by this number that he got down to on his final 250.




October 21st, 2014 by admin

To say that I’m proud of my wife wouldn’t even begin to cover it. I’m writing this post because Melis wouldn’t feel comfortable bragging about herself. Well, I AM ready to brag and have to stop short from shouting from my rooftop!

As some of you know, Melis has been out of town from time to time while serving as an intern for the CrossFit Level 1 Seminar Staff. Well, we finally received confirmation that SHE WAS OFFICIALLY HIRED!!!!!!

Some of you are probably wondering what the heck “Level 1 Seminar Staff” means. Some background first. Before anyone can coach a CrossFit class, you must attend a CrossFit Level 1 seminar and pass a written test. This is the first and most important step in becoming a good CrossFit coach. At the seminars, the movements and lifts we see in class are broken down and dissected in every way, and the attendees are showed how to teach them properly. Melissa will be on the seminar staff and help these individuals start their CrossFit coaching journeys.

As if there was any doubt that 203 has the best coaching staff in the area, this news puts a big, fat exclamation mark on that statement! It was a grueling process, and it took longer than usual for Melis.

She began the internship process early on in her pregnancy with Kellen. As she got deeper into the pregnancy, she had to pull back from the internships as her due date approached. After she gave birth and was ready to dive into the process again, she was told she would have to start over due to the time she spent away.

This news might have deterred some people, but not Melis. She continued to pay her own way, dishing out travel and hotel costs from her own pocket while receiving no payment or guarantee she would get a position. On top of that, you really have to be a special coach to be selected to the L1 seminar staff. You are thrown in front of a large group of people that you don’t know, while being examined and vetted by the amazing trainers who run the seminars, some of whom have competed in the CrossFit Games. To be quite honest and blunt, most people would crap their pants in this situation. The pressure is tremendous and any tiny mistake you make is noticed by the trainers in charge. They notice EVERYTHING!!

After a recent seminar in Pennsylvania, Melis was offered the position and I wish you all could have heard the joy and pride in her voice when she called home with the news. It was a long, hard road, but she got it!

On a personal note, Melissa, I know how hard this was for you. Being away from the boys……the pressure-filled weekends alone on the road…..time away from 203, and maybe you even missed me a little. But it was all worth it. We all knew you were the best CrossFit coach around, and now everyone knows this as fact. So freaking proud of you!!!!!

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Eric going 205# for his set of 20

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Some of the 4 pm crew in the middle of a tabata sit-up set

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Jess D. starting her set of 20 back squats


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The start of 50 wall ball

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The 5 pm class chipping through 25 power cleans

Sunday board

Sunday board







October Member Spotlight!!!

October 19th, 2014 by admin
Judy working hard during our in-house competition!!!

Judy working hard during our in-house competition!!!

Our Member Spotlight for October is Judy!! Judy is one of our fearless Masters athletes. We are so impressed with Judy and how far she’s come with us. She’s been CrossFitting for almost THREE years and is always striving to improve her fitness. It’s a family affair for Judy, as her son, Kevin, his wife Mikki, and their two beautiful children can always be found at the box. Judy is always up for a challenge and willing to try new things. She has worked tirelessly on her form with the lifts and proves you are never too old/young to build strength. We love the fact that Judy competed in our first-ever in-house competition a few weeks ago. She was out there doing burpees, wall ball and deadlifts with her team, competing head-to-head against some of our youngsters. Keep rocking it, Judy! You are such a great member of our 203 team!

Name: Judy Durkin

Where are you originally from? Danbury, CT

What high school and/or college did you attend? Danbury High School – Wood Secretarial School, NY

What do you do for work? I retired 5 years ago from Danbury Public Schools where I was an Administrative Assistant for almost 25 years.

When and why did you start CrossFit: I started in Jan. 2012, after a doctor diagnosed me with osteoporosis. He wanted to put me on meds, and told me never to lift more than 20 lbs. Kevin and Mikki were already members at 203 and suggested I give it a try. Fast forward to the present and I’m constantly lifting more than 20 pounds (she’s lifting 83 pounds in the photo above), and my bone density has improved to the point where I am no longer considered to have Osteoporosis.

Favorite and Least Favorite Lift?: My favorite lift is dead lift, and least is overhead squat!

What was your first workout, and what did you think after finishing? I don’t remember the whole workout, but it had wall ball in it. After I finished I wondered why I let Kevin and Mikki talk me in to such craziness!

Greatest CrossFit Achievement so far: I survived the “203 ThrowDown” and actually did better than I thought I would!

CrossFit Goal for 2014 and beyond: Continue to gain strength and endurance. My pace is slow but my determination is strong!

One interesting thing about yourself not related to CrossFit: Well, I have been married to my wonderful, (Crossfit supporter) husband for over 47 years. We raised 4 great kids and they have blessed us with 9 beautiful grandchildren. Just recently we snuck in a great grandchild!. For me, my life is my family. There is no greater love.

Complete the sentence, “CrossFit should….”be an inspiration to continue that uphill climb. When I first started CrossFit, I had never done any kind of physical activity. I have realized that it doesn’t matter what your age is or what your ability or strengths are. As long as you continue that climb, you will see gains. It is truly never too late.

If I’m not at the box, you can probably find me….: Working in my gardens or toting one of grandchildren to various activities.

Other comments?: I would like to applaud our 203 coaches. Without their support and confidence in me, I don’t think I would achieve to where I am today. They are by far the best.



Weekend Housekeeping

October 16th, 2014 by admin

We just have a few housekeeping items for the weekend for you. First, if you are participating in the Battle for the Bell next weekend, yes, NEXT WEEKEND, you should come to class Saturday. We’ll be doing some finishing touches on our preparation by practicing a couple of the workouts. If at all possible, partner with your teammate or teammates in order to get your strategy finalized. Be there!!!

Subtle WOD Hint: Be sure to wear clothing that you don’t care about Friday. You’ll see why when you get into the WOD.

Holiday Party. We will give you until the end of the weekend to vote for our annual Holiday party. Votes are already piling up and we have a leader right now, but we want to hear from as many of you as possible. If you won’t be at the box this weekend, vote in comments and we’ll make sure it gets on the board.

Barbells for Boobs. As a reminder, we scheduled our annual Barbells for Boobs event for Saturday, Nov. 8. You have all been great with this fundraiser in previous years, and we are counting on you again. We trust that many of you, if not all of you, have been touched by breast cancer somehow, some way. This is our small way of helping, and every dollar counts. Please click the following link and donate something today. No donation is too small. Thank you 203!!!!

I.O.U’s. Please, when purchasing any gear, WOD books or Protein pay by cash or check at the time of purchase. It is getting too difficult for us to follow up with all the IOU’s. Any outstanding balances need to get paid within the next week please.

The 6 pm crew starting Thursdays WOD

The 6 pm crew starting Thursdays WOD


Eliana, Jess D. and Mikki showing all three movements from the WOD

Eliana, Jess D. and Mikki showing all three movements from the WOD


Nothing wrong with running when the sun is going down

Nothing wrong with running when the sun is going down


Josh working through a set of 6 deadlifts

Josh working through a set of 6 deadlifts


Ashley looking strong with this split jerk from Wednesday

Ashley looking strong with this split jerk from Wednesday


Welcome to Lindsey!!!

Welcome to Lindsey!!!










Setting Dates

October 13th, 2014 by admin

Okay folks, we have a lot of events to plan here at 203 in the coming months. We are going to host a Barbells for Boobs event once again and raise some money for Breast Cancer awareness. We are tentatively planning for Saturday November 8th. We will have a couple options for the workout, stay tuned for details! We have raised a lot of money in previous years, hopefully this year will be no different! We urge everyone to donate money and wear pink to the event. Our fundraising page is HERE!

Second on the list is our annual Halloween Party! We plan on doing something different this year and will do it Saturday night, November 1.



This is the night after Halloween. Take the kiddos out for trick or treating Friday, then we’ll do our adult version Saturday night! Kids are welcome to attend and we’ll have a movie and snacks in the club room to keep them occupied. We HIGHLY encourage dressing up in costumes for the WOD…it may even get you out of doing some Burpees! We’ve seen some outstanding costumes in previous years and we can’t wait to see what you all come up with this time. We will make this a big event and invite you to bring food and drinks to enjoy afterwards!

FYI. We are still waiting to see if anyone will top Miguel’s “Snookie” costume from 2011. Epic.

Lastly, we are trying to nail down a date for our annual 203 Holiday Party. As of right now we have the following options, Friday, Nov. 21st, Saturday Nov. 29th, or Saturday, Dec. 6th. Look at your calendars and vote on the white board at the gym by end of the week. The date with the most votes wins!


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Amy, Jess D and Mike D overhead squatting last week

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Nicole H. going 225 x 3

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An intense Shayna about to push down the earth

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Aaron and Mike A. during Saturday’s “DT” type workout

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Mikki tossing the barbell overhead

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Lou with a DB snatch Sunday morning

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Joe F. starting his Columbus Day at 6 am!


Mousse locking out a push press early Monday morning

Mousse locking out a push press early Monday morning









More Video and Battle for the Bell News

October 9th, 2014 by admin

Here is some more video from our in-house competition…..the final heat of WOD 2 and the third workout.

Things are starting to come together for the upcoming Battle for the Bell competition on Oct. 25. The teams have all been placed into the Big Bell or Little Bell Divisions. Check the following link HERE to make sure your team is in the correct division. If you aren’t there, let us know ASAP.



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The 6 am class starting Fight Gone Bad

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Julia locking out a push press

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Wednesday’s noon crew enjoying some sun

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Becca and Christine locking out ring dips

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Kim P. and Mel D. working through a set of 20 push presses






A Look Back at the In-House Comp

October 6th, 2014 by admin

We got a lot of video from our in-house competition last weekend. We are posting Part I here of WOD 1 and the first couple of heats of WOD 2. We will do another video later this week of the rest of WOD 2 and the final workout. We absolutely loved the passion, intensity and camaraderie on Saturday. Look for a Winter Throwdown sometime in mid January!




Fall Challenge!

October 5th, 2014 by admin

It’s time for our Fall Nutrition Challenge! The teams have been set with a new twist on things. Instead of 3 or 4 giant teams we have grouped you into numerous 3-person teams! (Check the white board for a complete list of teams.) This means a whole lot more accountability on your part when it comes to any cheats…aka…any cheats will have a major impact on your team. Here is a run down on what you need to know!

When? We kick things off Monday, Oct. 6th and will go 6 weeks until Sunday at midnight on November 16th.

Scoring. Teams will be scored in 4 categories: nutrition, performance, gym attendance, and body changes.

Each team has the potential to earn 6 points each week for Nutrition. Each teammate will contribute 2points/week for clean eating. Any cheat will result in a lost point(s). We will require you to keep a food log (this can be via app, pen and paper, excel spreadsheet, etc). Food logs do not need to be turned in each week, but each week we will randomly ask 2 or 3 teams to submit their logs for the last week within 12 hours. Failure to submit ALL completed logs will result in 2 lost points.

Performance will be based on a set workout that we will do the first Monday and again the last Wednesday of the Challenge. Mark your calendars and be there! We will set make up days to get the WOD in if you can’t attend. Bonus points will be given to the top 3 teams with the highest score from the performance workout. No slacking off!

Athletes are required to attend the gym a minimum of 3 times per week. If an athlete is traveling during the Challenge, we will allow for travel WODs…but will require full disclosure of the WOD and time/score. Each athlete will earn 1 point per week for completing the attendance requirement.

Body Composition changes will be calculated and scored based on percent improvements in body fat. Each athlete must get measured by Melissa or Kirk within the first week of the challenge, and again at the end of the challenge.

Be sure to check the blog for weekly challenges and opportunities to earn extra BONUS POINTS!

What can I eat? We will supply a full list of acceptable foods in the club room at the gym. For the first 30 days, points will be lost for any indulgences in grains-(bread, pasta, rice, white potatoes), sugar (including cane syrup, maple syrup, honey, agave, coconut sugar) and alcohol. After 30 days we will get a little more lenient…but more on that later. Stock up on meats, eggs, veggies, fruits, nuts and seeds! We are putting together a private online forum for all participants…if you are not sure about something, just ask!

Be sure to get your $20 buy-in money submitted by Friday or face losing points for your team. We are so pumped for all our first time participants! Get ready to see just how powerful food and nutrition can be!

Money received goes to the cash prize for the winning team at the end of the Challenge! We will also pick ONE winner from the rest of the field who will receive one month’s membership FREE!

Saturday Schedule

October 3rd, 2014 by admin

Saturday marks our first In-House Team Throw Down! For many of you, this is your very first competition. We know you may be a bit anxious! Here’s all the info you need to know. First, we need everyone at the gym by 9 am. We will go over all the workouts and movement standards we are looking for. Any and all questions will be answered at that time! We will kick our first heat off promptly at 9:20 am. Feel free to arrive as early as 8 am to get in a warm-up and get settled. We will NOT be doing a group warm-up. Get together with your teammates and make sure everyone is ready to go and review your strategy. Remember to bring chairs and food to refuel between WODs and anything you need for the day.

Due to a bad weather forecast, we are going to wait on releasing our final WOD until Saturday.

Remember, everyone has an open invite to bring friends and/or family to the competition. This will give them an opportunity to see you in action, and get an idea of the amazing community we have. Stick around after the final WOD for a pot luck BBQ and drinks! Feel free to bring any food or recipe you want to share with the group. In the meantime, cross your fingers for decent weather!!!

We are ordering the teams by number…….find your team below in the photo.

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Doors Open
8 am

Athlete briefing with movement standards
9:00 am

Heat 1 – 9:20 am Teams #1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Heat 2 – 9:40 am Teams #6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Heat 3 – 10:00 am Teams #11, 12, 13, 14, 15

Heat 1 – (same teams as above for all heats) – 10:30 am
Heat 2 –10:55 am
Heat 3 – 11:20 am

WOD 3 – 12:00
WOD TBA – We hope to have 1 Giant HEAT!

Farewell Matt!

October 2nd, 2014 by admin

For tonight’s blog post, we hand things over to Coach Matt.


As some of you already know, this is my last week at 203 before moving up to the Boston area full-time to be with my better half, Cassi.  I wanted to write this post to thank all of you for my time at 203.

Back in March of 2011, I found 203 when searching for a new box after moving to the area for a job.  After my first class at 203

We had some fun at 7 pm as Matt coached his final class with us

We had some fun at 7 pm as Matt coached his final class with us

(barbell lunges and double unders!) I knew I found my spot.  Classes were much smaller back then, but the amazing community Melissa and Kirk were building was already evident and, as I’m sure you all experienced yourselves, they were super welcoming.

For a year and a half I was living in Katonah, working in Brewster, and commuting to the 6pm class at 203.  The driving was getting old so I had 2 options: find a new box closer to where I was living, or move closer to 203 – I chose the latter and spent the last 2 years down the street!  And all during this time I’ve spent most of my weekends driving back and forth to Boston.

During a time when it seems I was always on the move, 203 has been a constant in my life for 3.5 years.  Whether it was dealing with typical work stress, traveling around the country for work, or spending weekends in Boston, its been comforting to know I had a home in 203 where I could turn to for a great WOD with great people.  I’ve been around a lot less over the last few months as I’ve spent more time transitioning to Boston, and there are so many new faces during this time, but I would like to thank each and every one of you for being a part of this community.

Thank you again to Melissa and Kirk, and the entire 203 family.  I will miss all of you, but I won’t miss running up that hill!

Editor’s Note: We can’t thank Matt enough for all he’s done for 203. He has been with us since very shortly after we opened.  After he started with us, we both thought he’d make a great coach, and we were pumped when he expressed interest. We knew whatever class he ran was in great hands. Matt busted his butt for this gym. Entering every CrossFit Open since it first came out, representing 203 at numerous competitions, and going out of his way to help this gym run smoothly from day to day. We will miss Matt not only because he is an amazing coach and tremendous athlete, but also because he is one of the most solid, trustworthy, all-around good guys we’ve ever come across during our time as box owners. Cassi has family in the area, so Matt promises to drop in from time to time when they are back. Matt, good-luck in Boston and congrats on finally ending your long-distance relationship with Cassi. We know from experience how taxing that is and we are so happy that everything worked out for you. Again, thanks for everything and we hope to see you walk through our doors again soon!

Editor’s Note Part II: Well, Matt WILL be walking through our doors soon….he’s competing in our in-house throwdown Saturday before heading to Boston. That was quick!


Brenden working up to 165# x3 on his press!

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Kirk, Mike T., Mike S., Rita and company with some slam ball

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Some of the big 5 pm crew in the middle of a slam ball set

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Welcome Joe A. to CrossFit 203!!!

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Mike A. looking strong with this C&J Wednesday

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TP with a C&J