Workout of the Day:
Three sets of:
Bench Press x 4-6 reps
Rest 2 minutes
Ring Rows x 10-12 reps
(hold for 2 seconds at the top and take 3 seconds to descend)
Rest 2 minutes;
and then,
As many rounds as possible in 10 minutes of:
10 Pull-Ups
15 Dynamic Push-Ups
20 Anchored Sit-Ups
(Push-ups – Adv.=Slapping Chest, Int.=Clapping, Beg.=Pop Hands Off Ground)

Mark hates that we post this photo . . . which is pretty much why we do it.
Mark hates that we post this photo . . . which is pretty much why we do it.

Function over Aesthetics
Written by Mark Riebel
(Originally published on February 26, 2009)

Anywhere you look these days, you’re bound to see images of lean, beautiful people in the media enjoying their lives and selling you every product under the sun. Our society has put the image of a svelte, toned individual on such a high pedestal that it has become an obsession for countless individuals. As a result of this, the multi-billion dollar fitness industry has exploded as so many people get in front of the mirrors in gyms across America doing bicep curls to try to look pretty. We at CrossFit Invictus have a bit of a different goal than a great looking body—overall functional fitness.

Please don’t misunderstand me and think that I’m saying improving your physical appearance is a poor or misguided goal to have. I think it’s an excellent aim to want to lose a little fat or gain a few pounds of muscle and increase your overall level of health, and I realize that everyone who walks through our doors has a different and valid reason for doing so.

Rather, I’m saying that our brand of high-intensity workouts utilizing compound, multi-joint exercises (and not in the fashion of bicep curls with both arms) such as squats, deadlifts, and presses will lead to a much greater level of fitness and health than any circuit of machines at a traditional gym. And here’s the best part—the aesthetics will come with it. They always do. Your body will transform as you become stronger, leaner, and faster, and you’ll be developing the whole package of fitness while doing it.

The difference with our brand of training is that while training on a machine or in a way to isolate a muscle will work that muscle and make it look nice, that’s not how the human body is programmed to work. Our muscles work in concert with one another, and for the best results, that is how you should train. Training your muscles in isolation is kind of like buying a Lamborghini with a Geo Metro engine or going on a date with Paris Hilton. They both look nice, but when you go searching for the substance there’s just nothing there. That’s why you can see a big, buff guy injure himself picking up a 70 lb. box (something any of our CFI ladies can do) because he has never trained to deadlift properly.

So the next time you’re at Invictus up to your neck in a beast of a workout and you happen to get a lucid moment and wonder why you’re training the way you are, just know that you are stepping closer to your goals, and in a much more effective and valuable way than those guys and gals watching TV while they leg press.

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Antione Waneka
Antione Waneka

hi, i adore paris. she is funny and i can’t wait to find out what she does next! x


Great thought reminds me a bit of Mr. Twight 😉


Estrogen will be squirting left and right when the ladies see this picture. 😉


You had me cracking up at the Paris Hilton remark. What a great analogy.

FAQ - Workout of the Day (WOD)

What does WOD mean in CrossFit?

WOD stands for Workout of the Day. Most CrossFit gyms post one workout each day for their members and online followers to complete. Invictus currently offers THREE free programmed WODs each day (shown above)... and even more personalized and online supplemental programs through Invictus Athlete.

Which program is right for me? Can I move between them?

One thing that sets Invictus apart from other CrossFit gyms and online training programs is that we recognize everyone has different fitness goals, abilities and needs. Be sure to pick which programming is right for you so you can get a great workout that meets your needs.

What does 30X0 mean? (How to read the WOD)

Another thing you might notice that’s different about our programming is that we use ‘tempo training’ - almost always in the Fitness programming and in various cycles for the Performance and Competition programs. Those extra numbers (ex: @30X0) might seem confusing at first glance but you’ll totally get how it works and why we like to use it after reading this. Trust us, you’ll soon witness the many benefits firsthand. Learn more about tempo training.

I need help with some standard movements and warm-up ideas!

Whether you’re new to CrossFit or have lots of experience with the WOD, our coaches will help you get the most out of every workout. It doesn’t matter if you struggle with a particular movement or if your goals are pushing you toward the higher skilled and more elusive movements, our professional coaches support everyone with advice and feedback.

They have worked with all athlete levels and know what it takes to get people moving to the best of their abilities. Whether it’s burpees, double-unders, muscle-ups, or tips for the Assault Bike - we’ve got a coach who can help you.

Don’t worry, we’ve got your warm-ups covered, too. Our coaches are constantly learning from other modalities and love to use what they learn in innovative warm-ups focused on both preparing for the workout at hand and maintaining the body for a pain free life. Check out this full body routine to keep your joints functioning and free of inflammation. We also post warm-up suggestions in the Workout of the Day for each of the programs that are tailored to that day’s movements.

Workout on your own and don’t have much time for your warm-up? Here’s a couple of quick and simple ones for your shoulders, squat day, deadlifts, and everyone’s problem area, the thoracic spine.

What if I can’t lift the weight or do the movement as prescribed?

Scaling is part of the beauty of CrossFit because it enables workouts and programming to be tailored to anyone’s ability. When it comes to weight, you can and should ALWAYS scale the weight down if it is unsafe for you to lift it, or if it changes the intended stimulus of the workout.

Here are some rules of thumb for scaling weight in metcons (lifting for time). For gymnastics movements, there are some simple scaling solutions as well. If you are unsure, reach out to your Invictus coach! We are here to make sure you get the safest and best workout possible - proper scaling allows for that.

How many days per week should I train? / How many rest days should I take?

At Invictus, we offer programming 6 days a week, Monday-Saturday and we realize not everyone’s schedule - or training needs - are the same and therefore, you must use your best judgement and listen to your body when it comes to deciding how often to take a rest day.

If you have been doing CrossFit for a while now, you recognize that our program excels due to the high intensity component. With that being said, one thing you have to keep in mind is that you can’t sustain that high intensity every single day; otherwise your body ends up breaking down.

You can learn more about how often someone should take a rest day in this article.

What does EMOM stand for?

EMOM stands for Every Minute on the Minute. When you see that come up in a workout, you have up to one minute to complete the exercise required. Normally what’s prescribed won’t take the entire minute so you also have whatever is left of the time to rest until the next minute starts and you do the next set of prescribed work. And so on.

What does AMRAP mean?

AMRAP means “As Many Rounds (and Reps) as Possible” in a certain time period. For example, the workout might say...

AMRAP in 10 minutes of:

30 Double-Unders
20 Pull-Ups
10 Thrusters

So you would keep going through the cycle of those three exercises until the 10 minutes is up. Your score is the number of complete rounds plus any extra reps you did. So if you did four complete rounds plus 15 Double-Unders in the fifth round, your score would be 4+15.

What does OTM mean?

OTM stands for “On the Minute” and is the same thing as an EMOM. When you see that come up in a workout, you have up to one minute to complete the exercise required. Normally what’s prescribed won’t take the entire minute so you also have whatever is left of the time to rest until the next minute starts and you do the next set of prescribed work. And so on.

What does NFT mean?

NFT stands for “Not for Time” and means that you shouldn’t rush or try to go fast, but instead, focus on technique, skill, form or whatever you are working on for that movement.

How heavy should my first set be?

You might also be wondering where to start your first set if, for example, the workout of the day calls for 5 sets of Deadlift x 5 reps. Is the first set a warm-up or is that the first working set? Here’s our recommendation for how to properly build to your starting weight and what we consider warm-up sets and working sets.

How can I figure out my 1RM?

We frequently use percentage references in prescribing the number of reps to perform, so it’s essential that you have a good idea on most of your maxes.

Let’s say it’s been awhile since you have attempted a 1RM; maybe you had an injury a few months ago, or maybe you just somehow keep missing the 1-RM test days, or maybe you just forgot to write it down in your log book. If you have a multiple-rep max, you’re in luck. There’s actually a simple equation you can use to calculate an estimated 1RM based on the max number of reps you can do at a given weight.