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

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Old 10-08-2006, 03:20 PM   #1
Josh Brehm
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I've done a search online and on here, and I haven't really had too much luck trying to find the type of routine and/or the philosophy behind developing a routine for weightlifting. I'd like to see how the professionals train, and learn how to develop a routine for weightlifting. I'd prefer to find some sites to learn from as opposed to books due to I'm a college student without a job, and I can't even afford car insurance.
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Old 10-08-2006, 03:58 PM   #2
William Winger
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Unfortunately I haven't bookmarked all the websites I've visited to learn about oly lifting, but in my head it has all boiled down to a short list of key points:

- The oly lifts tax the central nervous system more than they do the actual muscles of the body. At first you won't be able to train often because your CNS will be fried, but eventually you'll be able to train twice a day six days a week (by 'eventually' I mean: if you go back in time and start training at age 6, preferably in Bulgaria).
-In addition to the CaJ and the snatch, and direct variations (like squat-cleans), you should practice other variations, with a focus on: front squat, squat, overhead squat, deadlift and military press.
-Tacking on to the second point, train your slow lifts first, in the morning, then do a full workout of either snatches or CaJs, eventually, do an afternoon workout of the other fast lift.
-When your form is perfect, try more weight.
-Alternate between days of high reps, and high loads (as with most weightlifting in general).
-Avoid high pulls, do power cleans instead (this may be a point of contention, but that's what I've heard, and it isn't like there aren't other variations to do instead).

So, if I may, a routine might look like this:

Sunday - REST
Monday - Morning: Front Squat
Workout: Squat-Cleans, Military Presses
Tuesday- Morning: Squat
Workout: Snatches
Wednesd- REST
Thursda- Morning: Deadlift
Workout: Squat-Cleans
Friday - Morning: Overhead Squat
1st Workout: Snatches
2nd Workout: Clean and Jerks
Saturda- REST

I'm obviously assuming four workout-days per week here, with weekends off.

For something more in line with CFit's schedule, try this:

A:Day 1 - Morning: Front Squat
Workout: Squat-Cleans,
A:Day 2 - Morning: Military Presses
Workout: Thrusters (how's that for 'more CFit-like'?)
A:Day 3 - Morning: Deadlift
Workout: Snatches
Day 4 - REST
B:Day 1 - Morning: Squat
Workout: Squat-Cleans
B:Day 2 - Morning: Overhead Squat
Workout: Snatches
B:Day 3 - Morning: Deadlift
Workout: Clean and Jerks
Day 4 - REST

I'm sure you'll refine these to suit yourself. And please don't blindly follow them, I'm really not an authority on this myself, this post just reflects the conclusions I've come to on oly-lifting training. I'm sure someone else with more experience will step in to offer their advice.
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Old 10-08-2006, 04:10 PM   #3
Elliot Royce
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I'm a beginner at it myself so perhaps have the beginner perspective. Get two books: Weightlifting Olympic Style by Tommy Kono and Starting Strength by Rippetoe. Get a DVD: Explosive Lifting for Sports. And ideally, get a coach. Rippetoe writes in the CF journal so if you have your back issues you can probably even avoid buying the book (although it's a classic).

I tried to do these myself but the movements are fiendously complicated (at for uncoordinated me) and you can hurt yourself if you put up too much weight with the wrong technique: wrists, rotators, shoulders, lower back, etc. are all at risk with poor technique.

William - your workout looks pretty intense for a beginner. I guess a college student is more flexible and recovers quickly than an old guy like me, but I'd be careful of injury starting off that quickly.

Kono advises 3 months on some basic lifts and flexibility training. I ran into a lifter at a meet. He was in college and very fit. He said his coach didn't let him touch the weights when he started for 4 months, just worked on the flexibility. Now he's snatching some good weights (230lbs, I think?) -- that's a long way away for me.

I've made more progress with 3 sessions with an Olympic coach than in 6 months of trying on my own.
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Old 10-08-2006, 04:11 PM   #4
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Old 10-08-2006, 04:20 PM   #5
Ross Hunt
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The best thing you can do is find a club near you and have a coach evaluate you and your needs in person.

http://www.msbn.tv/usavision/displayPage.aspx?id=730
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Old 10-08-2006, 04:22 PM   #6
William Winger
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Elliot, that's an excellent point, again it goes to show how much reading I've been doing on the lifters who are already very elite and experienced.

I guess a disclaimer like: "These are intended as a long term guide, and are modelled on the regimens of multiple competition- (if not world-) class lifters, in the trainee's beginning stages one should scale back both the number of workouts and sets, as well as their intensity." Should cover it.

I'm wondering now if I confused Josh with Shane Hamman...?

Greg, your post has a much higher ratio of good-input to words than mine!
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Old 10-08-2006, 07:34 PM   #7
Aimee Anaya
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Josh-
i don't know where you live, but i would advise finding someone who can teach you how to train o'lifting style. you cant just pick up a workout and expect to know what you are doing, if you have never trained in that manner before. As Greg simplistically puts it www.mikesgym.org
here you will find a workout of the day, which will, by far, be the best o'lifting training cycle you will be able to find, especially absent a coach. But, as i said... you can't just jump onto a training cycle as such without learning how to do so first. and you can't train as an elite athlete (or professional as you put it) without first obtaining the fundamentals. Find a coach and/or a crossfit trainer who can effectively teach you the snatch and the clean and jerk. You can go to www.goheavy.com and post under the olympic weightlifting forum requesting to find a coach in your area.
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Old 10-08-2006, 08:08 PM   #8
Josh Brehm
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Thanks everyone. I'm definitely going to look up a coach around here, but I'm going to have to do it after I find some extra money, or until after school's done with. Until then, I think I'll stick with the Rxed WOD and practice some oly stuff beforehand with light weight, and analyze the vids of lifters lifting. Oh, and work a *ton* on my flexibility. Any specific stretches you recommend for oly lifting?
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Old 10-08-2006, 11:02 PM   #9
Andy Shirley
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overhead squats.
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Old 10-09-2006, 01:36 PM   #10
Elliot Royce
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My coach, who ranks me as the second least flexible person he's trained, has:

- samson stretch
- quad stretch
- dislocates
- calf stretch (use a step and relax your heel down below the level of the step)
- touch your toes and also hold your ankles and pull yourself down
- not sure of the exact name but I'd call it a straddle where you bend one knee and crouch down with your other leg extended to the side then reverse
- tricep stretch

then bodyweight squats holding onto a rack, then bodyweight squats with arms extended in front of you. More dislocates.

I also add wrist stretches by getting into the "catch" position under a bar and just letting the bar hang on my fingers. Gradually it will come down into the catch.

This goes on until I'm sufficiently warmed up to lift safely. To really get there, it takes me like 30-40 minutes.

You may be more flexible. The lifts themselves will stretch you out if you don't use too much weight. Remember you want to avoid pumping up since it limits your mobility.

Rather than analyze others' videos, you're probably better using the video coaching section here. Again, when I saw myself on video, I was able to correct a lot better since we went through it frame by frame and I could much better understand the minor corrections needed.

I think as long as you train the movements rather than worry about the weights, you're fine doing this on your own. But if your ego doesn't let you stay with low weights, there is an elevated risk of a (minor) injury.

That's my experience anyway.
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