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John Bei 03-27-2007 06:20 PM

Hey everybody,

I just discovered the crossfit site a few weeks ago and have convinced a buddy of mine to start doing the workouts with me. I do have a few questions though about how to incorporate the WODs into what we already do, due to the fact that we are both wrestlers at our high school.

Since it's now the off season we're required to go to daily sessions which usually go like this:

Monday/Friday: Some type of running (buddy carries, long distance run, fartlek type runs)
Followed by what has been called "conditioning" (do a push-up, move to the side, push-up etc.; bear crawls, firemen's carry, wheelbarrows_
Followed by sprints (100's, 50's, 20's, 10's in various numbers depending on the coaches mood).
We then go into weight training.

On Tues/Thurs: Weight Training followed by wrestling practice

Ok, so after all the rambling on about what we do now I can get to my questions.

1) Would it be advisable for my buddy and I to do the crossfit WODs on top of all that we are doing (we could possibly drop out the weight training)

2) Being that we are upper-echelon level wrestlers in what some consider the best shape of our lives, would it be safe for us to jump into the WODs full speed or should we go with the scaled versions? (we both have fairly extensive knowledge of O-lifts and the forms being used)

3) Does anyone create their own workouts or is it only possible to do the WODs, because we would like to do workouts that could focus on areas that we would need during the season.

That's all the questions for now, thanks for reading through all that and helping out a coupla newbies.

Jeff Martin 03-27-2007 08:03 PM

First welcome to CrossFit. I have a little experience with wrestlers and CrossFit.

1) Whether you can add CrossFit into the mix would depend on how intense the workouts are. My son continued to CrossFit 4-5 times a week during the season after practice, and when it wouldn't interfere with meets or tournaments. The caveat is that he was an experienced CrossFitter and has been at it for a little over three years.

2) It is never safe to just jump into CrossFit. In fact it is possibly more dangerous for those who are "in shape" than those who aren't. The threat of Rhabdo should be taken seriously. Beyond that though, the people that scale the workouts and start slowly are the ones who make the most progress.

3) Unless you have a crossFit trainer to guide you, it's always best for newbies to follow the front page for an extended period, that way they are not creating workouts that focus only on their strengths, and ignoring their weaknesses. You'll get the most out of adding CrossFit by doing this. If you are interested in wrestling based CF workouts later let me know. My son and I make a couple up every week.

Scott Borre 03-28-2007 05:48 AM

Wrestling is a good sport that fits in excellently with CrossFit. I wrestled at Hersey High School in Arlington Heights, Illinois. It was one of the best wrestling programs in the state. Our conditioning program was like 'nothing else.' And we regularly did intense interval training on the weekend, and then weight training. And shorter workouts on weekdays and then skill training.

Based on what you have stated. I'd recommend that you do CrossFit.

A lot of weight training even in sports today is bodybuilding. It has no real goal. Sure its strength training but it often focuses on muscle isolation. That obviously isn't what a wrestler needs. So while I'm sure (at least I hope so!) that you are doing squats, clean and jerks, and the like, I recommend you do these in the CrossFit way.

For example, if you go in for weight training, do what was one of the workouts this week. Just do 8 reps, working on max front squat.

Hell, if you start doing some of the metocon workouts in CrossFit WODs, I bet in about 2-3 weeks that you'll be in superior shape to everybody else on the team.

The only problem you might have is be under rested if you try to do WODs on top of the other conditioning you have to do. But if you scale the WODs you should be okay. Obviously, listen to your body. If its just feeling beat down all the time you are doing too much. And make sure you take a rest day. And of course, make sure you are eating enough of the good foods.

John Bei 03-28-2007 09:10 PM

First off I'd just like to say thanks for the responses guys.

So basically we should start doing the scaled WODs and we should be good.

And Jeff, you wouldn't recommend doing any wrestling oriented WODs until we become more experienced with crossfit?

Oh, and one more thing, Jeff why do you say that it would be more dangerous for people who are in good shape to start the WODs full speed than someone who is not in shape?

Darrell E. White 03-29-2007 06:34 AM


I'll jump in and answer for Jeff about the need to scale. CF is the most intense program on the planet when it calls for a met-con work-out (metabolic-conditioning). Individuals who are not in shape will fail and stop the work-out before they are able to hurt themselves. Well-conditioned athletes, like wrestlers and Special Forces Operators, are at risk to work too hard for too long without an adequate base for THIS TYPE OF FITNESS, and are therefore at risk for something call Rhabdomyolysis. Rhabdo is the flooding of the bloodstream with the debris of damaged muscle fibers after an intense work-out. This debris causes damage to the kidneys and very serious, life-threatening illness. The most famous case of CF-induced Rhabdo is that of a Special Forces Operator who jumped into an over-the-top WOD as his first ever (see today's WOD for an example of one of these), developed Rhabdo, and was hospitalized for several days. (Note that, while the same pathophysiology is in play, this Rhabdo differs from the more common heat/dehydration form).

By all means add CF to your regimen, but be smart and be safe. Visit, Jeff's site, for daily scaling suggestions.

Welcome aboard. Fasten your seatbelt.

Jeff Martin 03-29-2007 11:42 AM


Darrell hit it out of the park. Because you are in shape you are more at risk. Start slowly.

You certainly can do wrestling oriented WODs if you want. However, I have been running a CrossFit program for 3 years and its my observation that the people who make the most gains are the people who either have a CrossFit Trainer to guide them or do the workout directly off the front page. My observation is these people make the most progress because they cannot design or pick WODs that ignore their weaknesses. Just an observation. If you want the most out of the program do the workout on the front page for a couple of months. Identify your weaknesses. Then you can use that info to make yourself bulletproof.

John Bei 03-29-2007 05:00 PM

Thanks fellas,

It's amazing how quick you get the great information on here.

Ok so I'm following what ya'll are saying and we're gonna start doing crossfit over the spring break holiday (in 1 week).

So Jeff, one last question, after reading your site and looking at the scaled WODs, how would I determine which one to use (obviously not Big Dogs, but the pack or puppies)?

Oh and maybe this question should move to another forum, and if so please let me know, but the place where we're gonna start doing the workouts has a bar and a place to do pullups, but what else would be nice/almost required that a coupla high school kids could get/make for cheap?

Jeff Martin 03-29-2007 10:10 PM

I recommend even people who are in great shape start with 3-5 workouts in the puppy range and then move up. Check each workout and honestly assess your strengths and weaknesses. Pick your group accordingly.
If you have questions on a particular day drop me a line. Be happy to answer your questions.

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