“The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.”- Ralph Waldo Emerson
A Spilled Protein Shake Leads Danielle Brandon to a New Sponsorship with Haven Athletic
Four-time CrossFit Games athlete Danielle Brandon spilled an entire protein shake that left her bag ruined during the 2022 Games and led her to the brand Haven Athletic. Fast forward and Brandon is the first sponsored athlete for the backpack and duffel bag brand changing the way we look at our gym bag.
The Haven Athletic brand is known for its organized bags with compartments for every item down to your chapstick and keys. The number of items CrossFit athletes now use has increased quite a bit over the years, yet the backpacks and duffels haven’t changed since the 1980s. The Haven duffels and backpacks are built for modern crossfitters who carry things like their rope, grips, multiple pairs of shoes, changes of clothing, and beyond.
“Not many people know but I’m a clean freak and love to be organized,” said Brandon. “My house gets tidied frequently, so it only makes sense that I love how organized my backpack is now. Everything has a place where it belongs.”
“Look good, feel good, play good. I’d say if your bag looks good, it’s one less distraction from the task at hand which is your training. Don’t waste time rummaging through your gym bag.”
“It’s kind of a question of ‘do you take your training seriously?’ Because if you do, then having all the tools to get the most out of your training, with you and in a place you can easily find makes it a no brainer to join the haven fam.”
Brandon is the first sponsored athlete for Haven Athletic, says its CEO Caleb Ulffers. The company has worked with other great athletes on a smaller level and have had a lot of interest in what they’re doing.
“We wanted our first official athlete sponsorship to mean something. Hearing the story of how her protein shake spilled in her backpack at the Games gave us the opportunity to step up and support her,” said Ulffers.
“We only had 8 sample backpacks that I flew back from our factory in Vietnam a week before the CrossFit Games to be able to show them to everyone at our booth. When Cooper and Zach from Lab Management came over and told me the story and said she needed a bag, I didn’t even think twice and grabbed one off the wall to give to her.”
“She’s been using our bags since the Games last year and we now know she’s also a very organized and tidy individual. It’s just perfect. I couldn’t have written a better story.”
Ulffers adds, the idea originated in 2016 when he was tired of digging around in his gym bag looking for items that seem to always float to the bottom or corners never to be seen again. He and his brother brought in a third co-founder to begin research and development.
Fast forward to 2018 and the co-founders were sampling and testing designs with real athletes. By 2020 they had the first pre-sale of their large duffel and have since added a small duffel and two backpacks.
“Not having to dig for messy or missing gear makes a huge difference in your mental space each day you train and this gives you the space to focus on your workout and build capacity,” said Ulffers. “Your bag should be the last thing on your mind.”
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Another Win for the Training Camp Method: Brute Strength Lands Four Athletes in Top 20 in the World in Quarterfinals
When we visualize elite CrossFit athletes moving to a new city to train with other high level athletes under the same coach in a training camp environment (as per the trend in recent times) it’s easy to assume the athletes live in a constant state of competition, going head-to-head everyday, living lives that don’t let them ever escape the sport.
But when you talk to Brute Strength Training founder, Matt Torres, you discover his training camp in Naples, FL isn’t anything like that.
High skill and redundancy between the HSPU and HS walks.
Coach athletes to maintain an upright torso while squatting.
Provide skill-based scaling options for all athletes and avoid the DB press/carry today.
Get intermediate athletes to attempt handstand walks under intensity.
Provide a challenge for all levels of athletes during the wall walk skill work.
Aussie athlete Katelin Van Zyl is a two-time CrossFit Games team veteran with CrossFit Urban Energy. In 2021 and 2022, her team took second and first, respectively at the Torian Pro. This season, Van Zyl has made a statement, finishing 25th worldwide in the Open, and first in Oceania in the Individual Quarterfinals.
Katelin Van Zyl
In 2 minute windows:
15/12 Calorie Bike Erg
5 Bar MU
Max Clean and Jerks in remaining time (185 pounds /125 pounds, 85kg/56kg)
Rest 2 minutes, then repeat until 30 clean and jerks are completed.
Scaling options: Swap out pull-ups or chest-to-bar pull-ups for the bar muscle-ups. Drop the clean & jerk weight to 155/115 or 135/95.
Some advice from Katelin: “Go hard in the 2 min window cause you get the 2 mins rest; challenge yourself. Prepare for that 3rd round to be the worst, but aim for consistency across the board. And do it with a friend!”To inquire about submitting an upcoming workout of the week, shoot us a note.
This Glute and Hamstring Workout from Marcus Filly
Looking to make that booty work? Then try this workout for all the gains for your behind by body building extraordinaire Marcus Filly.
How to Utilize These Six Supplements to Up Your Game
Supplements are everywhere these days, and their availability can leave consumers confused and wondering what supplements are supposed to help with their specific issues. NCI has got you covered with an easy-to-follow and thorough guide to the top six supplements to take!
The YETI Yonder™, aka Your New Favorite Water Bottle
Looking for a light water bottle that still has the toughness you are used to from YETI’s products? Introducing the Yonder™ Collection: available in two sizes (750mL and 1L for those who want more hydration) and in four colorways, this new design is also built to sustain impact and drop while remaining 100% leak proof!
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