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Old 03-23-2009, 05:33 PM   #1
Matt Sweeney
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pack level to puppies level - huge gap?!?

fairly new to crossfit, and trying to figure out the right level of scaling for me.

i can't help but notice that there is frequently what i see as a HUGE gap between the "pack" and the next step down, the "puppies." for example, look at these 2 recent work outs.

Pack:
For time:
185 pound Deadlift, 15 reps
Run 800 meters
185 pound Deadlift, 12 reps
Run 800 meters
185 pound Deadlift, 9 reps
Run 800 meters

Puppies:
For time:
75-95 pound Deadlift, 15 reps
Run 400 meters
75-95 pound Deadlift, 12 reps
Run 800 meters
75-95 pound Deadlift, 9 reps
Run 400 meters


Pack
Ten rounds for time of:
3 Weighted Pull-ups, 35 pounds
5 Strict Pull-ups
7 Kipping Pull-up

Puppies:
5 rounds
5 assisted or beginner pull ups
10 practice kips on the pull up bar


Puppies seems to be less than half of pack. for me, pack is usually a bit ambitious, and puppies is way too easy so i've been kinda taking the pack suggestion and then lightening it up if needed. is that what most others are doing? or are you doing puppies with ease?
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Old 03-23-2009, 05:37 PM   #2
Brian Bedell
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Re: pack level to puppies level - huge gap?!?

Everyone is different, if it looks too easy, scale it up. You will get a better feel for this the more wods you do.
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Old 03-23-2009, 05:40 PM   #3
Renee Lee
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Re: pack level to puppies level - huge gap?!?

i'm currently stuck in between pack and puppies. brandx scaled workouts scale in two ways: scaling reps or scaling weight.

Currently, i have the metcon ability to handle pack scaled reps, yet my strength is not at the level of the pack, so i usually wind up doing the upper limit of men's weight for puppies. that's how i usually manage it

so using your first example, i kept the reps 21-15-9, but i used 95#

i've found that because i started CF with NO BASELINE AT ALL, i'm in this middle ground for all my workouts, so i never second guess...but if you're more experienced/are stronger with front squats, you may find that wods involving a front squats or thrusters, you may easily be pack in, while others like this DL one you're in the pack/puppy limbo.

hope that helps
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Old 03-23-2009, 06:23 PM   #4
Camille Lore
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Re: pack level to puppies level - huge gap?!?

If you go hard enough, even buttercups is hard.
Pack is definitely a challenge.
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Old 03-23-2009, 06:33 PM   #5
Brett Dartt
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Re: pack level to puppies level - huge gap?!?

and sometimes theres a buttercup and sometimes there isnt. sometimes i just scale up a little bit from whichever and use an inbetween weight. or cut a round. sometimes when you step up a level for a workout you just have to suck it up buttercup as the saying goes. it takes what it takes

Last edited by Brett Dartt : 03-23-2009 at 06:35 PM.
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Old 03-24-2009, 06:01 AM   #6
Ryan Webernick
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Re: pack level to puppies level - huge gap?!?

On some workouts its not so bad. For the deadlift example, it is pretty easy to pick a weight somewhere between the two. I remember looking up the scaling for your second example though, and I agree that there is a big gap left on that one. I wasn't really sure what to do.
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Old 03-24-2009, 12:10 PM   #7
Jason R O'Dell
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Re: pack level to puppies level - huge gap?!?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Camille Lore View Post
If you go hard enough, even buttercups is hard.
Pack is definitely a challenge.
This.

I'm still doing buttercups on some (when i'm not familar with the movement) or puppies on other. They still leave me half dead.

Sometimes I think "Hey this one doesn't look too bad, I bet I can do it as RX'd." That's always a bad idea when I think that. Haha.

Intensity is the key.
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Old 03-25-2009, 02:56 PM   #8
Craig Massey
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Re: pack level to puppies level - huge gap?!?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Sweeney View Post
fairly new to CrossFit, and trying to figure out the right level of scaling for me.

i can't help but notice that there is frequently what i see as a HUGE gap between the "pack" and the next step down, the "puppies." for example, look at these 2 recent work outs.

Pack:
For time:
185 pound Deadlift, 15 reps
Run 800 meters
185 pound Deadlift, 12 reps
Run 800 meters
185 pound Deadlift, 9 reps
Run 800 meters

Puppies:
For time:
75-95 pound Deadlift, 15 reps
Run 400 meters
75-95 pound Deadlift, 12 reps
Run 800 meters
75-95 pound Deadlift, 9 reps
Run 400 meters


Pack
Ten rounds for time of:
3 Weighted Pull-ups, 35 pounds
5 Strict Pull-ups
7 Kipping Pull-up

Puppies:
5 rounds
5 assisted or beginner pull ups
10 practice kips on the pull up bar


Puppies seems to be less than half of pack. for me, pack is usually a bit ambitious, and puppies is way too easy so i've been kinda taking the pack suggestion and then lightening it up if needed. is that what most others are doing? or are you doing puppies with ease?
Crossing over from the Brand X forum where we get this sort of question a lot.
Jeff's scaling varies from WOD to WOD and over time, he's continually tinkering with the scalings as he discovers new things. You're right, right now there is a gap between puppies and pack for these two. Maybe that will change, maybe Jeff had something specific in mind there.

If I had to guess at his thinking I'd say that in both cases the main factor he's scaling in these two WODs, deadlift weight or pull-up ability, is worked often in CrossFit and tends to increase fairly quickly once they are possible at all in the case of pull-ups. Or he just had a few minutes between everything else he does to devise and post the scaling for a new WOD and this is what he came up with. This happens BTW, sorry to shatter your illusion of infallibility Jeff.

Our recommendation on the BX forum is that home CrossFitters stay on the lower scaling and work it as hard as you can. If you're doing that consistently and you're having trouble bridging a gap in the scaling, feel free to mix and match and use a weight that falls between the two. In his classes Jeff will assign scalings if requested and people stay at that level, no mixing and matching. He'll also tell people to move up or down a scaling in mid-workout. But that's because he can see what you're doing.

For the home CrossFitters he's trying to get across some of the key concepts that ensure people get the most out of CF.
The principal two that most people have to be hit over the head with repeatedly are:
  1. Metcons are a sprint. If you're slogging through you've overloaded yourself.
  2. As rx'ed is not a goal to be achieved at all costs. See also 1.
    Some people never get to as rx'ed, others are there first time out of the gate (b******s! ).
I'll add a third one I often tell people on the BX forum; The WOD will come around again. If you're not sure, scale low, you can always move up next time. You're doing this for the rest of your life, right?

If it's really bugging you, post your question over on the BX forum and I'll try and spot it and make sure Jeff answers your question. You can PM me here or over there and let me know you've posted it.

I'm Metric over at BX BTW.

Last edited by Craig Massey : 03-25-2009 at 03:09 PM. Reason: Dyslexic fingers
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Old 03-25-2009, 03:06 PM   #9
Jason R O'Dell
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Re: pack level to puppies level - huge gap?!?

Good point on No. 1 and No. 2.
I'm sure I could probably do most WoD's as RX'd very very very slowly though with a ton of rest thus defeating the purpose.
Good info.
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Old 03-25-2009, 03:13 PM   #10
Steven Matheson
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Re: pack level to puppies level - huge gap?!?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason R O'Dell View Post
This.

I'm still doing buttercups on some (when i'm not familiar with the movement) or puppies on other. They still leave me half dead.
I'm the same way....
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