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

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Old 05-14-2005, 12:21 PM   #1
Russ Greene
Departed Russ Greene is offline
Join Date: Jan 1970
Posts: 637
1. What would happen if crossfit was modified so that all training was concentrated in the glycolytic pathway? Yes even the focus days. So instead of a 10k or 5k run or row, we would do half mile or 500/750m sprints with an equal work/rest ratio. And instead of max deadlifts and olympic lifts we only would do higher reps, even on focus days. I think it would be very interesting to see what impact this would have on crossfit athletes and if their phospagen and oxidative pathway performance would consequently suffer. I was thinking about this as I've been on the swim and track and field teams this spring and the athletes whose events are in the glycolytic pathways seem to be able to do everything whereas those at the extremes seem overly specialized. Two examples: First of all, 200 yard freestylers can do well on 50's and 500's, whereas those who do only sprints can't last above a 100 yard sprint and those who do 500's and above don't have the power and speed to succeed much below those distances. Secondly, I remember watching a star 400m runner trying the shot put for the first time on a whim, with no idea what she was doing, with no coaching, in her running spikes. She beat most of the other girls there handily. I get the feeling she would have been able to do similarly had she decided to try the mile run on a whim too.

2. On an entirely different tangent, how about including weightlifting at higher intensities into the regular workouts? For example,

400m run
40 situps
heavy set of 5 clean and jerk
400m run
40 situps
same weight 3 reps clean and jerk
400 m run
40 situps
same weight single clean and jerk

Think about sports, you very often have to be able to perform at near maximal power output levels while under metabolic duress. E.g. the final sprint in a race, a double leg takedown in the last period of a wrestling match, etc. We don't seem to do this much in the WOD. It's not that we don't have to lift weights or do difficult bodyweight exercises under metabolic duress, but the load/intensity is rarely at a near-maximal level.

None of this is meant to to criticize crossfit, it's just stuff I've been thinking about.
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Old 05-14-2005, 01:06 PM   #2
Graham Hayes
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Sidmouth  Devon
Posts: 880
Intresting thoughts. I'm only guessing here, but I believe CrossFit is predominately in the glycoltic pathway, be it fully or blurred with the other energy pathways. So my guess is we'd be a little less stronger/powerfull and little less enduring (as in running endurance). But like I said just a guess. Your second idea is solid, it's in the spirit of 'nice lift, now do it again with 190bpm!', and CrossFit is fitness at anytime, anyplace, and any challenge. So anything goes. Just briefly I can only think of one WOD with that sort of mix, and I remember enjoying the challenge of doing jerks while pooped.

Good stuff!
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Old 05-14-2005, 09:39 PM   #3
Don Stevenson
Affiliate Don Stevenson is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Sydney  NSW
Posts: 1,038
My only concern with doing heavy weights in the middle of runs and high rep stuff is that it might be a bit unsafe.

I know that a lot of my clients would be unable to maintain the correct form and necesary core tension to perform a heavy deadlift or C+J safely.
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Old 05-15-2005, 03:18 AM   #4
Ally Smith
Posts: n/a
Good ideas. Fight gone bad seems to be hard and fast and work the glycolitic pathway simultaneously. I love 400's to bring up my lactic conditioning and strength to work through the pain. I have never done a heavy C+J after but I'll have a go and let you know how I respond to it>

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Old 05-15-2005, 11:18 AM   #5
Neill S. Occhiogrosso
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Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Philadelphia  PA
Posts: 177
Those are great questions, Russ. I've had the same curiosity, but wasn't able to articulate it as well.

For normal humans many WODs do involve maximal efforts. My "Diane", for instance, is a series of near-failure sets. It's interesting, though, that they never explicitly mix the two as in your WOD. Is this strictly for safety?

I've also wondered about workouts with shorter sprints, and I think there was a thread about this. Would something like:

7 Rounds:
- 5 Push-Press (Heavy)
- 10 Pull-Ups
- 100m Sprint

be a good WOD, or is it missing something?
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