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

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Old 07-20-2012, 11:01 AM   #11
Justin Bond
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Re: The Mistaken Emphasis on 1RM Strength

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Originally Posted by Katherine Derbyshire View Post
No, Tom Platz wins in a single heavy set for max reps. That has some metcon characteristics, but is not at all the same challenge as a metcon. In particular, a "heavy" metcon would still probably use less than half as much weight as the max rep test, and would therefore be a strictly cardio exercise for both men. Does anyone seriously doubt that a guy who can squat 800# can do 95# thrusters all day if he wants?

Katherine
That doesn't make any sense. If Dr. Squat can't rep out 2/3rds of his 1RM as long as Platz, then why do you think he can rep out 1/10th for even longer?
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Old 07-20-2012, 11:06 AM   #12
Erik Knudsen
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Re: The Mistaken Emphasis on 1RM Strength

Interesting, Justin. So you are stating there's a mismatch between what muscle fiber types and energy systems we use for a metcon vs what is being trained via a heavy lifting protocol?
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Old 07-20-2012, 11:08 AM   #13
Justin Bond
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Re: The Mistaken Emphasis on 1RM Strength

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Interesting, Justin. So you are stating there's a mismatch between what muscle fiber types and energy systems we use for a metcon vs what is being trained via a heavy lifting protocol?
Hi Erik, basically that's my point, at least for people who are doing powerlifting-inspired strength programs.
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Old 07-20-2012, 11:14 AM   #14
Erik Knudsen
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Re: The Mistaken Emphasis on 1RM Strength

And then the caveat of training in the 60-80% range at say 10-12 reps (which may very well jive with a number of crossfit type WODs) is that hypertrophy kicks in? This may, or may not be, the goal of many crossfitters as others in this thread have pointed out (?)
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Old 07-20-2012, 11:17 AM   #15
Justin Bond
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Re: The Mistaken Emphasis on 1RM Strength

Basically, although I don't think you should neglect any rep ranges, the emphasis should be on sets of 8 to 15 (or EMOTM with 2 to 5 rep sets).
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Old 07-20-2012, 11:23 AM   #16
Mauricio Leal
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Re: The Mistaken Emphasis on 1RM Strength

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Here is an interesting story about a bodybuilder and a powerlifter competing to see who was stronger:


Here is my question: all else being equal, if Fred Hatfield and Tom Platz competed in a 12 minute metcon, who do you think would win?

The standard theory behind programs like Starting Strength for Crossfit is that if you drive up your strength, those RX weights for metcons get a lot lighter and less taxing. That's true. But I think the story above makes it clear that you'd be better served by driving up your 10RM strength.

No it does not make that "clear." All your assertions are speculative. Also, this has been debated ad nauseum many times before, so sorry to rain on your parade of ingenuity. In the past it was framed as "Chris Spealler vs. a 1000# Squatter back squatting 135# for max reps."

Spealler "wins," in theory. No one has done this test for many reasons, not the least of which is that it doesn't "prove" anything. Whatever the test may be it is only one data point that does not by any stretch of the imagination represent "fitness," and so largely irrelevant to the discussion other than proving something we already know: there are multiple energy systems and you must train each to be "fit." Do CrossFitters need Max Strength and Strength Endurance? Yes. How much of each? It's debatable, but more importantly, impossible to measure in any direct and simple way.

Is there a threshold of diminishing returns for Max Strength where if the loads are below a certain weight the better ROI is achieved via more strength endurance-based training? Sure, but the demands of CF metcons vary wildly by design, so you may be the king of moving 95# for reps, but could still get crushed by using 135# in the exact same workout, and that says nothing of all the other variables in play. The very fact that the weightlifting loads and gymnastics skills for competition WODs seem to be ever increasing will require that strength be a top priority. Athletes bias strength training because it is the most transferable quality, as well as the most binary and penalizing to not have a surplus quantity of (if you can't perform a single rep your score is a zero in some cases), not because it is the only thing that matters. How much of each is optimal is an ongoing experiment.
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Last edited by Mauricio Leal : 07-20-2012 at 11:26 AM.
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Old 07-20-2012, 11:25 AM   #17
Justin Bond
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Re: The Mistaken Emphasis on 1RM Strength

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No it does not make that "clear." All your assertions are speculative. Also, this has been debated ad nauseum many times before, so sorry to rain on your parade of ingenuity. In the past it was framed as "Chris Spealler vs. a 1000# Squatter back squatting 135# for max reps."
No, that's not really the point I'm making.
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Old 07-20-2012, 11:26 AM   #18
Justin Bond
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Re: The Mistaken Emphasis on 1RM Strength

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No it does not make that "clear." All your assertions are speculative. Also, this has been debated ad nauseum many times before, so sorry to rain on your parade of ingenuity. In the past it was framed as "Chris Spealler vs. a 1000# Squatter back squatting 135# for max reps."
No, that's not really the point I'm making. Erik's Socratic dialogue is doing a much better job. I'm not sure where he's going, but at least he's following the discussion.

Edit: whups, meant to edit, but ended up with a double post. Sorry!
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Old 07-20-2012, 11:28 AM   #19
Katherine Derbyshire
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Re: The Mistaken Emphasis on 1RM Strength

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That doesn't make any sense. If Dr. Squat can't rep out 2/3rds of his 1RM as long as Platz, then why do you think he can rep out 1/10th for even longer?
With no time limit, how many reps can you do with PVC?

My point is not that Dr. Squat would win if the weight were lighter. My point is that metcon weights are so light for both men that strength endurance would not be the limiting factor, and therefore the max rep test is not a good indicator of metcon performance. I suspect that either man could rep out 45 95# thrusters without too much difficulty.

I watched a powerlifter do Fran once. It was the cardio intensity that crushed him, not anything to do with strength or strength endurance.

Katherine
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Old 07-20-2012, 11:33 AM   #20
Erik Knudsen
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Re: The Mistaken Emphasis on 1RM Strength

Oh I just found the discussion to be very interesting.

It seems that focusing on any one area means you might not be sufficiently trained in another. I was just curious if there was some kind of weight lifting sweet spot. However, since the programming and associated metcons can jump all over the map, this may be impossible to establish.

In some sense I guess it boils down to what you are trying to accomplish. If you wanted a blazing fast Fran time, I can see arguments for working on your front squat to increase strength so a 95# repetition is very easy. However, you also need to be able to bang out 45 of those 'easy' reps (after pullups no less). So the other side of the coin is building up some amount of endurance too. Or, maybe you do a bit of both.

Erik
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