Past 4 months
So the CrossFit Open 2015 has brought awareness of new weaknesses and positive gains on strengths. The nature of the “sport of fitness” each year gets harder and gymnastic movements get more advanced. There is only so much you can do with barbell based movements, you can either do a Snatch or Clean and Jerk or you can’t due to poor movements mechanics (press, squat, deadlift). Gymnastically, many of us (me included) have not spent enough time on basic movements which was highlighted in the open.
Remember the 3 Headed Monster
When looking at yourself ask this: If I was a three-headed monster would all three of my heads be the same size..?
The Conditioning Head – Fitness is a measurement of work capacity, the ability to move any load for a set duration of time i.e. 4-20mins.
The Skill Head – No matter how strong or fit you are, can you perform high volume of unbroken reps of the following; Muscle ups, pull ups, ctb, ring dips, HSPU, double unders
The Strength head – Assuming you have good work capacity and a good skill set you’ll do well at comps due to the nature of the them. But remember, you need to get into the competitions 1st.
If we now add 2 more aspects of fitness to our monster…
Mobility – Enables you to move efficiently and fast with minimal risk of injury, thus allowing for an increase in volume. But, it’s down to YOU !
Mental Grit - This is developed every day, just by turning up your beating that choice to go home and chill or avoid a movement that you hate. Instead you are choosing to develop a poor skill, increase mobility and become a better person.
Now look back on the past 4 months and think to yourself; have I followed the white board, could I have done more mobility, could I have focused on getting lower in a squat and moving better. If so would I be a better athlete now… I ask myself this question after every qualifier I do and the answer is always the same, stop working on strength and develop my engine and skill set.
The new phase will look similar to before with a slight change on Thursday.
Monday – Metcon
Tuesday - Metcon
Wednesday - Metcon
Thursday - Gymnastic drills
Friday - Metcon
Saturday - Team Metcon
Sunday - Rest Day
*Break down on the above meanings;
Metcon – Development of engine is the number 1 goal for everyone; metcons will always come 1st but will start earlier to allow for coaching on skills, oly and strength movements. Due to the nature of the competitions we are tested on metcons not 1RM.
Oly Drills – During these sessions we will look at working with a lighter load but drilling good form and building good movement patterns before working with heavier loads. I find these great for building stability and speed before going back to heavy lifting, there’s also less stress on your joints allowing you to maintain high volume of training.
Strength – You don’t need to be super strong to compete and do well in comps, I’ve learnt this the hard way. Most events have moderate load, so improving strength at the loss of fitness isn’t a good idea.
Skill – Developing particular movements is key. Box jumps, pull ups, double unders, muscle ups, TTB always come up in competitions. But they are also a great way to improve general fitness.
Volume Vs Intensity – To improve focus on intensity and quality of training. Not increasing volume to decrease in quality of movements to build muscle memory.