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

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Old 02-12-2009, 08:23 AM   #1
Chris Kemp
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CFSB - Ask your questions here!

The publication of Bingo and Jeffís ďStrong MedicineĒ (WFS) article and Jeff Martinís Interview (WFS) on CrossFit Radio (WFS) started a load of interest.

There are a couple threads on this already but they got kinda convoluted with various distractions. Let's keep this one on point with discussion on implementation of the program. So please, ask any and all questions that you need to get started with the CFSB.

Note that the program in itís current form is targeted at Intermediate or Advanced CrossFitters and we may suggest that you are would be better served by following the CF.com WOD (including ME days) with appropriate intensity.

Lastly, for those that donít know me Iím kempie. I run CrossFit NorthEastEngland but have got to know the Martinís through links formed by the historic Painstorm workouts. Iíve hung out as a satellite BrandXer for years and was lucky enough to be invited to join the CFSB guinea pig program. Be happy to share my experiences with the program and how I implemented it.

Cheers, kempie
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Old 02-12-2009, 08:24 AM   #2
Chris Kemp
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Re: CFSB - Ask your questions here!

One of the major questions seen so far is “What’s the deal with the high rep sets? You mean we do these as well as the ME? And the metcon?“

OK, that’s three questions but that seems to be the centre of folks difficulty with the program.

In practical terms the high rep sets seem to convert our limit strength increases to something usable in Crossfit workouts. It is a big contributor to the effectiveness of the program.

Once you have completed the ramp up cycle suggested in the Journal article then 3 days a week you will be doing some form of high rep work in addition to your ME sets.

Monday ME Back Squats + metcon
Tuesday ME Deadlifts + high rep deadlifts + metcon
Wednesday Rest
Thursday Metcon
Friday ME Front Squats + high rep back squats + metcon
Saturday ME Press + high rep press + metcon
Sunday Rest

For back squats only one high rep option is suggested (ie 15 - 20 reps). The multiple sets suggested for deadlifts and presses proved too much to recover from for pretty much every crash test dummy.

For deadlifts and presses two main options are given.

A single high rep set of somewhere between 12 and 21 reps. If you stick with the single set option (in general these are easier to recover from than the multi-set options) then once you hit the upper limit with a given load increase the weight next week and start working your way up again.

A multi set option (eg 15-12-9 or 10-7-4). For consistency a fixed rest of somewhere between 1 and 2 minutes between sets is recommended. If you successfully complete all 3 sets unbroken than move on to a greater volume option ie 15-12-9 => 21-15-9. If not then repeat next week.

Starting out on these high rep sets I would suggest starting with a single set of 12-15 and start with a load you know you could comfortably get 10 with. As long as you get 12 or so stick with that load and keep repeating that single set week on week until you manage 15 or more. Now is the time to try something like 12-9-6 (or even 10-7-4 for the press)
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Old 02-12-2009, 08:58 AM   #3
Joshua Murphy
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Re: CFSB - Ask your questions here!

Kempie -

Thanks for doing this. I have a couple of questions that I think you partially answered, but I am still looking for more clarity. For the high rep sets, it seems as though the goal is to increase the overall volume for the day at moderately heavy weight. I say moderately, because you will obviously be fatigued from the ME portion of the day (or at least if you are doing it right you will be). So for the high rep sets, you will conceivably never be at your "max" for that set (because of preceding fatigue). Was any thought put into switching the order of the high rep and ME sets from time to time? Also should we be looking at the high rep sets as volume training at 80-90% (or less) of our true max for a high rep set?

For me, I just plan to hit the high rep sets as heavy as possible, with the understanding that gains will most likely come faster and easier with ME sets.

Or am I way off?

Thanks,

Josh
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Old 02-12-2009, 09:11 AM   #4
Jeff Power
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Re: CFSB - Ask your questions here!

Thank you for your willingness to answer some of these questions.

My question is to the choice of exercises for the ME work why only one upper body lift during the week?

Did ya'll play around with different protocals---3 days on 1 off, 5 days on 2 off etc?

Thanks,
Jeff

Last edited by Jeff Power : 02-12-2009 at 09:31 AM.
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Old 02-12-2009, 09:40 AM   #5
Jeff Martin
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Re: CFSB - Ask your questions here!

Jeff,
I'll answer that question. 2 on 1 off, 3 on 1 off is simply the schedule I keep and the athletes I train at Brand X keep. A brief history might keep things from getting overly complicated.

I am a CrossFit Trainer, I'm proud of that. As such I have been heavily influenced by Coach Glassman. In his article,
Fundamentals, Virtuosity, and Mastery
An Open Letter to CrossFit Trainers
CrossFit Journal August 2005

http://library.CrossFit.com/free/pdf/Virtuosity.pdf

Coach states the following:

There is plenty of time within an hour session to warm up, practice a basic movement or skill or pursue a new PR or max lift, discuss and critique the athletesí efforts, and then pound out a tight little couplet or triplet utilizing these skills or just play. Play is important. Tire flipping, basketball, relay races, tag, Hooverball, and the like are essential to good programming, but they are seasoningólike salt, pepper, and oregano. They are not main courses.

Look familiar?

Warm up
Lift
Short metcon
skill work and play

We follow Coaches lead in virtuosity in movement at BX. You will hardly ever hear a trainer telling someone to go faster. They almost always will be helping the clients/athletes to move better. In the same way we followed coaches template outlined above.

While visiting last summer three CrossFitter, Patrick Massey, Anita Tyler, and Patrick Hoffman noticed the way were training was a little different than some of the other affiliates they had visited and began hounding me to write down what we were doing and pass it on to them. Their incessant badgering eventually won out and CFSB is the product.

Why do we only press one day? Simple, most of us were "understrong" in the squat/deadlift department but already pressed at bodyweight.
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Old 02-12-2009, 09:44 AM   #6
Jamie J. Skibicki
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Re: CFSB - Ask your questions here!

Jeff,

Would you think changing the metcon day on the fourth day to a bench press day in the style of the OH pressing day (day 6) be too much to recover from?
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Old 02-12-2009, 09:53 AM   #7
Chris Kemp
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Re: CFSB - Ask your questions here!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joshua Murphy View Post
Kempie -

Thanks for doing this. I have a couple of questions that I think you partially answered, but I am still looking for more clarity. For the high rep sets, it seems as though the goal is to increase the overall volume for the day at moderately heavy weight. I say moderately, because you will obviously be fatigued from the ME portion of the day (or at least if you are doing it right you will be). So for the high rep sets, you will conceivably never be at your "max" for that set (because of preceding fatigue). Was any thought put into switching the order of the high rep and ME sets from time to time? Also should we be looking at the high rep sets as volume training at 80-90% (or less) of our true max for a high rep set?

For me, I just plan to hit the high rep sets as heavy as possible, with the understanding that gains will most likely come faster and easier with ME sets.

Or am I way off?

Thanks,

Josh
Josh, it's a bit black box but just pick a load that will allow you to get into the specified rep range this week. Can just about guarantee you'll get an extra rep or two in next week. It's not so much about increasing volume for the sake of it. Rather, about developing a capacity that will be useful to us in our CrossFit workouts. Maybe you could get more reps with that load if you were fresh, but that's not really the aim. Rather, we want to develop the capacity to lift "heavy" things when tired.

When I started this I was managed to do 12-9-6 with 300lb deads. After 2 and a bit cycles I managed 17@330 and 11@360. I'm guessing that Linda at 300 is gonna be a bit easier next time round ...

Help any?

Cheers, kempie
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Old 02-12-2009, 09:59 AM   #8
Chris Kemp
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Re: CFSB - Ask your questions here!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamie J. Skibicki View Post
Jeff,

Would you think changing the metcon day on the fourth day to a bench press day in the style of the OH pressing day (day 6) be too much to recover from?
Jamie, that could work. Depends on how much time you need to recover from benching before pressing. Could also consider adding your bench press day after deads and running a 3 on 1 off cycle or simply alternating bench and press every other week.

Just a case of making it fit with your capacities, goals and practical limitations.

Cheers, kempie
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Old 02-12-2009, 10:05 AM   #9
Shane Skowron
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Re: CFSB - Ask your questions here!

How did a cycle of CFSB affect your monostructural performances? Positive, negative, or, neither? E.g. times at 5k run, 2k row, etc.
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Old 02-12-2009, 10:16 AM   #10
Jamie J. Skibicki
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Re: CFSB - Ask your questions here!

I'll give it a shot and let you know how it goes
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