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Old 11-20-2006, 05:33 AM   #1
Robert Tardio
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Hello. I just started this program a couple of weeks ago and I'm unsure of how to blend it into my regular off-season routine.

Some quick info: I'm 52, exercised regularly since my teens. I've done a bunch of marathons, several dozen tri- and duathlons, and along with running, swimming and biking several times a week, I've also lifted two or three times a week for many years (at 5'9" and 180, I'm not built like a typical marathoner). The aforementioned exercises normally keep me busy five or six days a week.

Here's my issue: I want to keep my base cardio work in place and meld it with this program, but I absolutely must have at least one rest day per week (I've found as I've gotten older these off-days are not just a break, they're critical). For example, Mondays in the off season I usually run 5-miles of intervals. But today is a Crossfit 'rest' day...if I rest today when do I run? If I don't rest, then the next Crossfit rest day is a week or so away, meaning that I've gone two weeks without a break. And the same thing is likely to happen next week.

If I rest today, then I need to run tomorrow, which means doubling up (or tripling up on days I attend MA class) with whatever CF demands. This is what I've been doing so far.

Maybe I'm overthinking this issue; I figured I'd post and ask because the question may have been raised before and there may be an answer I haven't considered (I searched before posting but didn't find anything that really addresses my situation).

I also wanted to post just to get my feet wet and say hello. I've been looking for a program like this and I believe it's exactly what I wanted. I'm looking forward to receiving my first journal.

My thanks in advance for any advice, thoughts, or suggestions.
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Old 11-20-2006, 06:13 AM   #2
Anthony Bainbridge
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LOTS of people manipulate crossfit principles into their own workouts & routine. It certainly doesn't have to be 3 on 1 off.

What is your current routine? So far we know you run 5km on Mondays ... what do you do the rest of the week? That will help us come up with different ideas for you.
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Old 11-20-2006, 07:39 AM   #3
Robert Tardio
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Hi Anthony. I had figured that many people combine Crossfit with other workouts; that's why I wasn't trying to reinvent the wheel.

My usual off-season routine is based on a two-week cycle.

Week one:
Mon-5-mile (not km) run, intervals
Tue-swim early, lift later in the day
Wed-run 5-mile or 10k tempo
Thu-swim/bike brick early, lift late
Fri-run 5-mile trail/hills
Sat/Sun-one day rest, the other light lift, maybe an easy bike or run with the kids.

Week two:
Mon-3-mile run, intervals
Tue-swim/bike brick early, lift late
Wed-run 10 to 15-miles, moderate pace
Thu-bike early, lift late
Fri-run 3-mile trail/hills
Sat/Sun-same as previous week.

My lifting has almost always been whole-body, sometimes circuits. Splits just don't fit well into my work schedule.

I appreciate your interest in the details and any suggestions you might offer. Thank you!
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Old 11-20-2006, 07:42 AM   #4
George Brothers
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you are overthinking things.
first, if you search around, you will find somewhere that coach has said that the wod is not crossfit but only a part of it. when i read that i took it to heart. now i rarely do the posted wod on the day it falls. so keep your schedule of days off. if it works, dont break it. i would suggest that you piece in the wods or xfit type workouts where you want them. having a hard time with what wod you want to do? look at the archives. you need to have a goal with these. are you trying to get stronger? then working in the wods that are strength based are for you. trying to shave off some fat? then the met con wods are for you. the chippers are for endurance. read the faq it is a goldmine. also get some back issues of the journal that pique your curiosity and needs.
here is a suggestion for you:
today is a running day for you, 5 miles of intervals.
instead run 400s or 800s and alternate these with air squats say 50 of them. how about 6 rounds of this.
next week on your swimming day, do thrusters 3, 2, 2, 2, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1 with as much wt as you can handle for each set.
the following week on your bike day, do a chipper, search for the filthy fifty and do that.
what do you think of those suggestions? i think this will give your body some different stimuli and make things more interesting plus your cardio base will stay intact.
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Old 11-20-2006, 09:11 AM   #5
Robert Tardio
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Hi George and thank you for your comments. I agree that I'm barely familiar with the program and even less so with the site. I've looked around some and know I need to search more (there's so much information it's difficult to take it all in; I need more time).

One of the things I really liked about the program was the variety. As anyone glancing at my off-season routine can tell, I like structure; but I've also evolved to the point that I want to vary my workouts more (which is why I started Crossfit).

Yours is an interesting suggestion. I've rarely (never?) broken up my runs to do other stuff (even back when we called them fartleks it was still just running). I guess what I was looking for was some structure to the variety, if that makes sense. I've enjoyed doing the different types of workouts and the different way they angle the muscles.

My interpretation of your suggestion is basically that I maintain my program and fit CF into it in a more-or-less as-needed basis...is that right? If that's the case I'm not sure that's what I'm seeking, but I'll have to give it some thought. Your example is a good one as a case in point; after all, it makes sense to intersperse intervals other exercises. But even assuming I do something similar on the longer run days, that still leaves me with the rest day(s) question in my first post.

Goal-wise, mine is to maintain or improve in every aspect. Getting stronger's always nice (and not easy as you get older), while I doubt I need to lose any weight.

As I said, maybe I'm overthinking the whole thing. My make-up is such that I'm looking for the program to be fairly set, without me having to decide what CF workout I should inject.

In any event, my sincere thanks for your suggestion and the time you took to respond.
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Old 11-20-2006, 09:35 AM   #6
Anthony Bainbridge
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I should have asked this originally ... better nate than lever (10pts for anyone who knows that joke) ... anyway!

What are your current strengths and weaknesses?

For example ...

Are you a great runner?

Poor swimmer?

Good endurance, but speed/power is lacking?

If you identify these areas, you can adjust your program to improve the weak links.

You could also take a leap of faith and try following the 3/1 pattern as prescribed for the entire off-season and see how you feel. What's the worst that could happen? :biggrin:
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Old 11-20-2006, 05:43 PM   #7
Dwayne Holloway
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Robert, I was thinking what Anthony posted. The WOD is usually pretty short time wise. Then if you scale it down, it will be even less. Start out slowly doing the WOD with what you do now and scale the WOD to half or less. See how you feel and adjust up or down. I am 44 and have about the same history as you with the running, biking, and triathlon. I do the WOD about a week behind its posting so I know what is coming and add 5x5 lifts where I need them. I stopped formal run and bike workouts after starting crossfit and have increase personal records in both running and biking time. My strenghth has definitly incressed as my max effort lifts are much higher and I have more lean muscle and less body fat. Like George said you can make this what you want and need. Try lots of stuff, keep track of what you try, and let us know how its goes!

hope this helps
Dwayne
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Old 11-20-2006, 06:16 PM   #8
George Brothers
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let me clarify my comments.
sub my above suggestions on the days you would do those workouts. so intead of the run, instead of the swim, instead of the bike insert those workouts i suggested.
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Old 11-20-2006, 06:23 PM   #9
Rene Renteria
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I've been looking for a program like this and I believe it's exactly what I wanted.

What is it that you wanted? Only variety? What is it about variety that interests you? I'm curious what it was about your training that made you look for something else (just getting stale?).

Goal-wise, mine is to maintain or improve in every aspect.

What does "every aspect" mean for you? Have you read "What is Fitness?" Do you mean all those aspects?
http://www.crossfit.com/cf-info/what-fitness.html

It seems that some of your runs could be replaced with conditioning WODs and your lifting with Max Effort work or WODs, if you want to stick with your current structure. Given all the sport-specific (tri) training, I was wondering why you don't have any bike/run bricks in there?

Given all the sport-specific training, are you willing to sacrifice some of that training to achieve the goal of getting better in all aspects of fitness? What are the primary weaknesses you feel you want to address? (Mine are all over the map, everywhere!)

Lots of info, too, on people's experiences (some good, some not so good) using CrossFit as their main tri training if you search the boards for triathlon training.

Best,
Rene'
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Old 11-21-2006, 04:57 AM   #10
Robert Tardio
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Hello again and my thanks to Anthony, George, Dwayne and Rene for your responses. It speaks well of this site that you would take the time to consider my questions so thoughtfully.

Anthony: (Sorry I don't get the nate/lever)...strength and weakness-wise, I'd have to say that strength is my weakest point, followed by swimming which is fairly good, while my distance running is pretty good (I've slowed some as I've gotten older, no question about it), and my biking is excellent. My strength issues are in some part a result of an injury from a long time ago that left me less flexible than I had been; my squats and deads suffer because I have to be careful of my form, which in turn suffers because of the flexibility issue. I've worked to improve it but the sad truth is I never gave it the focus it deserves (for too many years I bought into the doctor's warnings about those lifts). I do agree with you that simply following the program would be fine; I'd lose some of my cardio base but probably increase overall fitness.

Dwayne: Thus far I've done my usual and added the WOD's. I don't know that I'd reduce them since they are fairly short. (Remember my first question really revolved around scheduling and ensuring rest days.) But I was really interested to read that your bike/run times have improved w/o specific training, just using CF. Is that the case during the season as well? I wonder if you've hit upon a simple but effective idea for me: Do last weeks workout. It allows the scheduling and pre-thought I seem to need and still lets me follow the program (I'm a freak for dotting i's and crossing t's).

George: I'm sorry, I've re-read your posts and I'm not sure I follow. I thought you originally suggested inserting CF routines into my regular workouts. Are you now saying drop my regular workout and do the WOD? (Kind of like Dwayne says he's done?)

Rene: Good questions. Yes, I wanted variety. And yes, I felt the same old routines were stale. Variety interests me because I know that the typical programs are not as well-rounded as I want to be. The fact is that for many years I made my own programs. Just a few years ago I tried a pre-made one and, while it didn't do everything I wanted it to, I also recognized that it was effective at its focus. But I wanted something that improved my strength for functional purposes from head to toe. I didn't want to compromise my cardio work while I was at it. That's why I was excited when I found Crossfit. Now I just have to dial it in so I'm not overdoing it (and you fine folks are helping me to figure out how :happy:).

Yes, I've skimmed that journal. I have to read it and alot of other stuff on this site. I've subscribed to the journal and look forward to receiving it. But to answer your question, I go back to my response to Anthony. I want to maintain my swim/bike/run and general cardio/aerobic capacity, and improve my strength for the most important lifts (or facsimiles), squats and deads.

Regarding bike-run bricks, I actually do them, but I felt that my program description was all ready too detailed. I'll get on the bike before a run just for the trans feel; the reason my focus is more swim-bike is because I've worked hard on my swimming over the years, sometimes to the point that my bike suffers. So I gave that trans more attention.

You asked, "Given all the sport-specific training, are you willing to sacrifice some of that training to achieve the goal of getting better in all aspects of fitness? " The answer is yes. The one thing I'd give up is the long distance running, because I feel it has the least functional use. (After 19 marathons I think I'm done anyway.) I'd call anything over 10 miles long distance.

Again, my thanks to each of you. I really appreciate your time and help. Now to spend some time perusing the board!
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