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Fitness Theory and Practice. CrossFit's rationale & foundations. Who is fit? What is fitness?

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Old 07-03-2011, 08:09 AM   #31
David Meverden
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Re: Elite crossfit athlete development theory

Regarding people doing well with just mainsite, the best example is Jason Khalipa, who won in 2008 doing only mainsite. BUT he was real strong before starting CF and the competition was MUCH less intense then.

I think Matt is correct in post #5. CF is splitting more and more into two camps. CF mainpage, and similar, falls into camp #1: A way to be pretty damn fit without that large of a time input. It won't make you a games stud but it will keep you at a high level of readiness all the time. I don't think there is anything wrong with that, especially considering that that kind of varied programming is interesting and fun.

And everyone else is correct about camp #2: as programming develops it will look more and more like training that already exists for decathletes, football players, etc. And then we get back to a what is CF discussion. Whatever. I think that YES, the kind of training done under the banner of CF at certain places will be able to produce elite CFers, but it will take time and it will take continued evolution of the programming. I'm just glad that so many more people are taking a hard look now at programming, athletic development, and results. Ultimately, spreading the idea of training and thinking like an athlete to non-athletes is the best thing CF has done.
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Old 07-03-2011, 08:17 AM   #32
Eric Montgomery
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Re: Elite crossfit athlete development theory

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Originally Posted by Doug Lantz View Post
Shane,

Can you post some names of affiliates whose programs are designed to produce athletic competitors ?

Are you talking about competitive at CF or other sports ?

Do you post programming ? I believe you have or had a website.
As an example, Invictus is just down the road from my affiliate, and they've sent individuals to the Games each of the last few years and also have a very strong affiliate team. This year they had a silly number of both men and women finish in the top 60 of the online qualifiers for SoCal. As far as I know, most of their competitive people have individualized Games prep programming written up by their coaches. The programming they post online is for their general population and is still very good, but people who want to compete have programming tailored to their individual needs.

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Originally Posted by Nathan Greaves View Post
I dont know if anyone else has seen it, but on one of Dave Castro's programming lectures, he points out a member of the audiance who made it to the games simply by doing the .com WOD's. Theres no questioning of if she did anything extra but as Rob O. points out on strongmanwod.com, the .com WOD's should be the foundation of everyones programming.
Speal did a lecture recently where individualisation of programming was touched upon. But like people have said, Crossfit is not a "magic fix". It wont make you Poundstone strong and Bolt quick in a matter of months, it's gonna take years of hard work, eating right and an unrelenting stubborness to not give up.
Hard Work - The foundation on which CrossFit is built upon!
Would you agree that Castro probably has some incentive to publicize or stretch the truth about the usefulness of CF.com programming? Sure, that may have been possible back in 2008 or 2009, but there's simply no way someone is going to make it to the Games now with CF.com alone. I've looked back at some of the numbers from 2007 and 2008, and it's funny to see that my current numbers would have made me competitive 3-4 years ago even though they're nowhere near being competitive now. The top guys/girls are exponentially better than they were back then, and there have been a bunch of former competitive athletes cross over into the CF world and raise the bar significantly.

As for the second part in bold--let's not pretend that CF has a monopoly on working hard and enduring discomfort in workouts. Successful athletes have been doing those things for years, long before CF ever came around.
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Old 07-03-2011, 08:35 AM   #33
Andrew N. Casey
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Re: Elite crossfit athlete development theory

i think you have to look at the purpose as much as the programming. the purpose of crossfit is to specialize in not specializing in order to produce the highest GPP possible. Work capacity across broad time and modal domains, for the unknown and the unknowable. so if an athlete is weak in a certain time or modal domain, then in order to accomplish the purpose they may have to tweak the program. the end result is still a high GPP. all of the games athletes are amazing, but not of them would be great at a specialty. none of them would be competitive as a gymnast, running races, powerlifter, oly lifter, etc. so while the programs may be specialized, the fitness still isn't. in my mind, if the program is maximized to accomplish the purpose then it's crossfit to the highest degree. form following function, as it were.

as far as the athletes that have history in other sports, that has alot to do with simply being the kind of people that are winners. whether sports, work, money, etc, the commitment, discipline, hard work, and attitude that it takes to compete at high levels and be the best at what you do is largely that same. the people that tend to have these qualities tend to excel at whatever endeavor they attempt. they live to find a challenge and conquer it.

as to the question "did crossfit make them great, or did they make crossfit great", in my mind the answer is both/ and. they each help one another and it's a mutual benefit. a win-win for everybody. that's the same with any organization. the sport needs it's stars and the stars need the sport. but if most of these athletes, that as you say come from high competitive backgrounds and high level coaching, didn't truly believe that crossfit was the best program, then i'm sure they wouldn't be doing it and they would be doing whatever other program they found to be better.
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Old 07-03-2011, 08:47 AM   #34
Jonathan Kinnick
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Re: Elite crossfit athlete development theory

My 2 Cents.

My brother, Jeremy Kinnick, has been crossfitting following .com since June '07. He started out with a 17 minute Fran. He made the games in '09 and this year (3rd place, SoCal region).

He was not a crazy athlete before CrossFit. He played high school baseball and soccer, and two years of baseball at a Junior College. This was all before 2000, and he was pretty much sedentary after that.

He follows .com, adjusted to a 3 on 1 off, 2 on 1 off (We're closed on Sundays). He has eaten perfect Zone ratios since August '08, and has shifted his carbs to mostly vegetables over the years.

He also works on weaknesses, which has always been the prescription of CrossFit. He has never done more than a handful of two-a-days a year since '07. Every month or so, we assess where he is weakest, and come up with some extra work to address those weaknesses until they are no longer weaknesses. Then we move onto something else. We only address one, maybe two, weaknesses at a time.

That may not be enough for everyone to make it to the games. But it is for him. It's a little bit of a strawman to say no one can make it using .com ONLY because CrossFit has never said that you shouldn't work on your weaknesses, or sport training, or whatever else you might do physically. In my experience, regular two-a-days do not allow athletes to focus and push as hard as they need to on their WODs, and as a result slow down their fitness gains.

I just thought I'd throw out a specific counter example since a lot of people are speaking in generalities about the inferiority of .com programming.
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Old 07-03-2011, 09:07 AM   #35
Thomas Baker
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Re: Elite crossfit athlete development theory

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Originally Posted by Jonathan Kinnick View Post
My 2 Cents.

My brother, Jeremy Kinnick, has been crossfitting following .com since June '07. He started out with a 17 minute Fran. He made the games in '09 and this year (3rd place, SoCal region).

He was not a crazy athlete before CrossFit. He played high school baseball and soccer, and two years of baseball at a Junior College. This was all before 2000, and he was pretty much sedentary after that.

He follows .com, adjusted to a 3 on 1 off, 2 on 1 off (We're closed on Sundays). He has eaten perfect Zone ratios since August '08, and has shifted his carbs to mostly vegetables over the years.

He also works on weaknesses, which has always been the prescription of CrossFit. He has never done more than a handful of two-a-days a year since '07. Every month or so, we assess where he is weakest, and come up with some extra work to address those weaknesses until they are no longer weaknesses. Then we move onto something else. We only address one, maybe two, weaknesses at a time.

That may not be enough for everyone to make it to the games. But it is for him. It's a little bit of a strawman to say no one can make it using .com ONLY because CrossFit has never said that you shouldn't work on your weaknesses, or sport training, or whatever else you might do physically. In my experience, regular two-a-days do not allow athletes to focus and push as hard as they need to on their WODs, and as a result slow down their fitness gains.

I just thought I'd throw out a specific counter example since a lot of people are speaking in generalities about the inferiority of .com programming.
Interesting -- did he still follow .com programming leading up to the SoCal open and regionals?

He must have gotten his ridiculous engine from somewhere -- and I doubt it just came from CrossFit. I see the 17 minute Fran example as a skill and exposure element, not necessarily his engine at that time.

Please elaborate!
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Old 07-03-2011, 09:42 AM   #36
Shane Skowron
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Re: Elite crossfit athlete development theory

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Originally Posted by Doug Lantz View Post
Shane,

Can you post some names of affiliates whose programs are designed to produce athletic competitors ?

Are you talking about competitive at CF or other sports ?

Do you post programming ? I believe you have or had a website.
In addition to the answers already given, I would also say:
Crossfit Central (www.crossfitcentral.com - wfs)
MaxFit USA (www.maxfitusa.com - wfs)

seem to have decent programs for producing athletes.

Just want to clarify, I'm not saying that those affiliates/gyms who aren't in the business of producing competitive athletes aren't smart or useful or anything. Sometimes it takes just as much effort and skill to keep a non-athlete healthy, fit, and happy as it does to train an athlete to be competitive. But for the sake of this discussion, the latter is what we're talking about.

To answer your other question, no, only for myself, since I'm the only person I coach. I'd like to try to train someone someday though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by David Meverden View Post
Regarding people doing well with just mainsite, the best example is Jason Khalipa, who won in 2008 doing only mainsite. BUT he was real strong before starting CF and the competition was MUCH less intense then.
In interviews, didn't he say that he was doing like a schedule where he did 4 workouts a day for a week, then 3/day for a week, then 2/day for a week, then 1/day for a week leading up to the Games, or something like that?
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Old 07-03-2011, 09:55 AM   #37
Jonathan Kinnick
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Re: Elite crossfit athlete development theory

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas Baker View Post
Interesting -- did he still follow .com programming leading up to the SoCal open and regionals?

He must have gotten his ridiculous engine from somewhere -- and I doubt it just came from CrossFit. I see the 17 minute Fran example as a skill and exposure element, not necessarily his engine at that time.

Please elaborate!
He was fat and out of shape at the time, we had only found out about CrossFit a few months before, so he was just getting into it. His Fran progressed as follows:
17:22 (6/07)
8:24 (8/07
5:08 (12/07)
4:03 (2/08)

You can see his full Fran history here (wfs) on beyond the whiteboard.

During that time we were still in the garage doing .com only, on a 3-on-1-off. No extra work, because everything was a weakness at that point.

The only metcons he has ever done have been prescribed by .com, except for the occasional holiday wod or something of that nature. His engine comes from hitting every wod with games-like intensity, or something near that. The only way he can attack them that hard is by not doing two-a-days. You get fast by going fast.

He followed .com all through the open, only hitting the games WOD once a week. Once the regional workouts were released, we modified his programming to specifically prep for that. A specific, known test needs specific preparation. He took the week or so after regionals off. Now he is getting back on .com, and working his newly exposed weaknesses from regionals.
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Old 07-03-2011, 02:46 PM   #38
Matt Thomas
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Re: Elite crossfit athlete development theory

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Originally Posted by Shane Skowron View Post
I've been looking over Crossfit affiliate sites for several years now and there's a big disconnect between affiliates that are programming just to get people to have fun, stay in shape, and be competitive amongst themselves, and affiliates that are programming to produce athletic competitors.
Shane, do you have any examples off the top of your head of affiliates who do a really good job at the first goal? I'd like to take a look at them.
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Old 07-03-2011, 02:50 PM   #39
Jeffrey Cupra
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Re: Elite crossfit athlete development theory

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Originally Posted by Matt Thomas View Post
Shane, do you have any examples off the top of your head of affiliates who do a really good job at the first goal? I'd like to take a look at them.
Re-read the thread. They are already posted
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Old 07-03-2011, 02:58 PM   #40
Struan Potter
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Re: Elite crossfit athlete development theory

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Originally Posted by Jeffrey Cupra View Post
Re-read the thread. They are already posted
Re-read the question - which affiliates are really good at programming to keep it fun and improve their fitness, but not necessarily make them games athletes.
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