No 7am Classes!

7am classes on August 16 and 18 are cancelled.  Sorry for any inconvenience.  7am classes will resume on August 21!

Ninja’s Notes: 7 August 2017

Patience & Persistence

This is something that I’ve been really thinking about over the past few months while watching you all get your fitness on. It’s also something that I preach when coaching. No matter the level of the athlete, member, client, or whatever you liked to be called, there are two key ingredients that must be present in order to grow and succeed: patience and persistence. There are those that have the ability to pick up movements within the first 5 minutes, and there are those who may take years. What we all need to remember is that we can all improve in some way whether it’s the elite athlete focusing on consistency and increasing work capacity, an intermediate athlete adding more weight to their lifts, or a beginner athlete increasing their body awareness.

With this work comes the understanding that what we do takes time, heck, everything in life worth anything takes time. You must have patience and know that there will be days where your body and mind are aligned and your workout goes fantastically. Other days where you will feel disconnected. However, you must refuse to give up. This is where persistence comes in. You know you can be better and do better, which is why you keep coming back. Don’t let that one thing, movement, day, person get in your way. Come back into the gym and tackle that movement. You make that bar your bitch!

A memory from my competitive gymnastics days popped into my head while pondering this topic. Balance beam was my favorite event. (Who thought telling young girls that doing flips, spins, and leaps across a 16 feet long, 4 inches wide, 4 feet off the ground piece of wood was a good idea?!) It was scary, but I loved the challenge. I loved how it made my body and mind feel. I remember first learning my “series”, which was two back handsprings in a row. I can’t even count how many times I fell, or my foot slipped and I crashed to the mats, or I “crotched” the beam. There were so many. However, looking back, I never realized how brave I was to get back up on the beam to try it again. I never realized how persistent I was to master this movement.

This is how I see all of you. Your continuous drive to come in and improve your body and mind inspires me every day. Sometimes you may cry, sometimes you may get angry and throw shit, and sometimes you may just sit in a corner to have a moment with yourself, but you do not give up. So, with this month’s “Ninja’s Notes” I want you all to know how much I appreciate your dedication, loyalty, and persistence to be better people, and I am beyond grateful that you choose to do it at CrossFit Santa Barbara.

Coach Ninja xo

Athlete of the Month – July

Athlete of the Month – July

Ms. July – Kelly Scott!

Our latest Athlete of the Month is the one and only Kelly Scott! We love having her at our gym. She brings a level of focus, drive, and desire to learn that we as coaches love to see. Congrats, Kelly! Here she is in her own words:

“My introduction to CrossFit happened when my co-worker, Casey Nelson, began to question (or ridicule) my choice of long distance running as my primary exercise. Sure, I was dealing with knee injuries most of the time which often prevented me from playing my competitive sport of choice (tennis), but I really figured as a 40 something year old athlete I’d already seen my best years, physically speaking, and I should just be happy to be competing in races and tennis tournaments sometimes. Eventually I dropped in to a community class or two but in early 2015 I started CrossFit in earnest and was immediately hooked by total inability to do pretty much all of it! CrossFit has a unique way of exposing all your weaknesses and boy were there many. As Casey loved to regularly point out – I couldn’t even squat to parallel for the longest time!!

But I was determined to meet this challenge and over the course of the next couple of years I slowly improved, and I discovered that CrossFit made me a better and healthier athlete. With all the strength training I found I was running faster, was stronger on the tennis court, and injured a lot less. When I started to dial in my nutrition earlier this year with the help of so many at CFSB (Ashley, Julian, Janyce, Casey, Naomi) I really started to see my performance improve.

The coaches and community at CrossFit Santa Barbara have been such an amazing support to me and all the athletes who choose to get their sweat on at CFSB. I love that there’s no judgment about where you are on your fitness journey, and that everyone is encouraged not to compete against the person next to you but to just get a little bit better than you were yesterday. For me, CrossFit and weightlifting have become an essential part of my life both physically and mentally. What better way to get through a work day then to lift heavy stuff during your lunch break or after a day at the office! So, a big thanks to all y’all at CFSB for being awesome and helping me to get a little better each day. I still have so much to improve upon (ahem, gymnastics skills….), but I can now squat for real!!”

Athlete Of The Month – June

Athlete Of The Month – June

Congrats to our Athlete of the Month for June, Mr. Jared (aka ja’Red) Naito! We are so honored to have him as part of our community. Continue reading to see what he has to say about his journey and experience so far…

“My CrossFit journey began in December 2015, a few months after I returned to Santa Barbara after living in South America. No longer reliant on walking places and once again able to indulge in all my favorite (read: “not the healthiest”) foods, I found myself quickly putting on weight. Wanting to nip that trend in the bud, I knew I had to eat better and exercise.

Working at a startup, there’s never enough time in a day. After putting in long hours at the office, it can be difficult to find the motivation to work out. The problem with the activities I liked was that they took too long to get a good workout in or they just didn’t work me hard enough. I didn’t want to ride my bike for hours just to get home and have to go to sleep. I wanted something more intensive than climbing. Then I heard about CrossFit.

Admittedly, I was skeptical. CrossFit has a stereotype – one I wasn’t especially keen on. I wasn’t a bro looking to get jacked; just a guy with a slowing metabolism who wanted to get back into shape. But my roommate, coworker, and friend Ryan wanted to join a gym, and I figured I’d be held more accountable if I worked out with him. The concept of HIIT workouts was intriguing to us both, so we signed up and scheduled our movements classes.

I remember my first day at the Gray facility. Julian was going ape shit per usual, people were hucking themselves up and over bars, and everyone was sweating and breathing hard. It looked intense – maybe too intense. But you have to give things a shot, so I did. I will say that the first few months weren’t all that enjoyable. I’ve always been a competitive person, and though I can’t say I’m athletically proficient, I like to think I’m coordinated and hold my own. But with CrossFit, I struggled; my form was never quite right, my timing was always a bit off, and I would finish dead last in most workouts. In most environments, I would have been dejected and demoralized. But not at CFSB.

Looking back, I probably wouldn’t be doing CrossFit today had it not been for the extraordinary coaches and community at our box. Though I was constantly being corrected, criticisms were constructive and tips were encouraging. Fellow members were always there to support and encourage me to do things I didn’t know I could do. I’m still getting those corrections and I’m still receiving that encouragement, and that’s why I love CrossFit so much.

To me, it’s not about getting huge. It’s not about having a six-pack, lifting more than the next person, or being #1 in workouts. In my eyes, CrossFit is about continually striving to be better than you were the day before. There’s something about working your ass off for an hour every day to discover you can do things you didn’t know you could the day before that is immensely satisfying. And when you lift, sweat, swear, tear, fist bump, and drink beer with friends, you’re always looking forward to the gym. So thanks everyone! I couldn’t ask for a better place or group of people to spend my time with.”

Jared, we are so proud of you and your work ethic, and the determination to grow every day. Congrats and we love ya!

Memorial Weekend Schedule

The gym will be closed Saturday, 5/27 – Sunday, 5/28 for the California Regionals in Del Mar, CA. We are so very excited to be down there to support our own Julian Martinez, who placed 11th in the SoCal Region.

On Memorial Day, Monday, 5/29, we will be holding one workout at 10am. The WOD will be “Murph” in honor of Navy Lieutenant Michael Murphy, who was killed in action in Afghanistan on June 28th, 2005.

Saturday, 5/20 – Gym Closed!


Sorry for the last minute notice, but we just got notice that the parking lot is getting repaved tomorrow. As a consequence, the gym is going to be closed tomorrow. The upside is that the sleds will work better. More sled pushes! Our apologies for the inconvenience.

Athlete of the Month: Miss January – Jaimie Kostiuk!

Athlete of the Month: Miss January – Jaimie Kostiuk!

We are so pleased to announce our first Athlete of the Month of 2017 – Miss Jaimie Kostiuk! How we choose our AOTM is we look at the previous month and pick the athlete that has demonstrated exceptional hard work, discipline, and dedication to their fitness. Although we are well into February, Jaimie wins the award for January.

Jaimie is part of our small but sassy 6am crew. Even though it’s early, she comes in with her trademark smile and great attitude and does the work. She is admired by many in our community for her beautiful lifts and strength.

Jaimie, we are so excited to have you (and that Kevin guy) as part of our community!

Coach Ninja

Here’s what Jaimie has to say about her journey through CrossFit…

In early 2009 a CrossFit box rented space in Kevin’s office building. He started immediately as it was a work perk from his boss. When he first told me about what they were doing in the gym I thought, “this sounds really dumb.” I figured there was no way anyone could get into shape doing a 3 to 12 minute workout each day. He drank the Kool-Aid quick and after six months attempting to convince me to try it I finally caved and started on-ramp September 14, 2009. I quickly fell in love. I loved the competitive aspect. Having been a gymnast and competitive cheerleader my entire life I struggled to fill that void once I graduated from college. I didn’t have the daily routine, the competition and camaraderie, or the discipline. I found what I had lost when I found CrossFit.

For years before CrossFit I had been going to a globo gym off and on but I would always lose interest. I loved that with CrossFit my goal each day was to be better than the day before. My first competition was 4/10/10. I competed in the Rx division because in those days that meant you could do chin-over-bar pull-ups and double unders. There were 11 other girls in the division including Kris Clever (who went on to win the games that year), Lindsey Valenzuela and Becca Voigt. I think i finished last or second to last but that didn’t discourage me at all. It fueled my desire to get back in the gym and improve. I was so in to CrossFit by that point that for our wedding gift Kevin surprised me with a Level 1 cert which I received in June 2011.

In the seven years that I’ve been CrossFitting we’ve lived in 4 different cities. One thing that made the moves more tolerable was knowing that we would have a CrossFit family every where we went; people with shared interests and an instant social network to make fitting in so much easier. This was no different when we made the move to SB last summer. After looking at a couple local gyms I came home from work one day and Kevin said he had found our gym. He said they were our people (e.g., swear too much, have a gym beer fridge, and don’t take themselves too seriously) and the new space and equipment was great. I couldn’t agree more. Everyone at CFSB has been so welcoming. I love my small but awesome 6 am crew. I love that even after all this time I still have so many skills to learn and improve upon and look forward to a lifetime full of CrossFit!

Ninja’s Notes: 20 January 2017

Ninja’s Notes: 20 January 2017

Ninja’s Notes: 20 January 2017

Today is an important day in our country – Inauguration Day. Some of us are happy, many of us are angry, and a bunch of us are numb. I always do my best to live my life through the belief that “perspective is everything”.

Note: this is not a post about politics, as this is not the venue for that.

The reason why I bring up this historic day is because there are so many heightened opinions, thoughts, beliefs, and emotions floating around that I don’t think it is possible to escape. How we choose to respond to the life swirling around us shows our true character. Are we reacting emotionally or rationally? Are we thinking before we speak, or are we going to regret what just spewed out of our mouth?

CFSB 2.0 has been open for a little over seven months now (there was a two month transition period between CFSB 1.0 and 2.0 that I like to refer to as purgatory, haha!), and within these past seven months, I have learned more than I thought I ever would; not only about the business side of things, but also about myself and people in general. (My degree is in Sociology, so I thrive on learning about and studying people!) The main theme that kept presenting itself to me was compassion.

As a first-time business owner, I made a lot of mistakes. I have no problem admitting that. To be honest, there were plenty of times where I was worried that I took on more than I could handle. That thought still pops into my head, but not as often anymore. However, what kept me going were particular members and coaches that had my back and believed in me that I could do this. Their compassion helped me overcome my doubts and their belief in me keeps me moving forward. This sh#t ain’t easy, but I love what I do and I am unbelievably grateful that I have the opportunity to provide for this community.


CrossFit started as a small online community, and grew to over 13,000 affiliates because of its followers’ belief in community. I am proud to say that I am part of the first CrossFit gym in the Santa Barbara area. What started as a small gym inside of the garage of a retired US Marine has now grown into something amazing, all because of its members.

Since 2008 when CFSB was established, six gyms have opened from Goleta to Carpinteria that are either CrossFit affiliates or are no longer affiliated, but still offer similar workouts and programming. At first glance, it could appear to be overwhelming; there are so many in such a small area! How I choose to view the situation is this: there is something for every person. Every single CrossFit gym in this area has a different vibe. What may work for one, may not work for another. We’ve had people leave to go to another gym, and we’ve had people leave and come back. When people leave my gym to go to another gym, there are two thoughts that go through my head: We either 1) did something wrong, or 2) did not provide what they needed. Sometimes what they need is something that we could not provide, and that is okay. That is why other gyms exist. If we did something wrong, I take a step back, assess the situation, solve the problem, and move on.


Let us now reflect on the three themes of this post: perspective, compassion, and community. In order for us to succeed in the gym, in life, or as a community (or even as a country), we need compassion. To have compassion is to look at the situation from a perspective that may not be our initial choice. It is to look at a situation through the eyes of the other. Perhaps it’s having compassion for yourself. This is where we begin to understand others, which will then help us understand that of ourselves. We all come to CrossFit to grow, both physically and mentally. Growth comes through understanding. When that exists, that is when our community grows.

CrossFit is community.

Be well,
Coach Ninja