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

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Old 11-08-2007, 11:46 AM   #1
Nicolas Castonguay
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Ever since I started doing Crossfit, my strength has gone down... Any reasons why?

So yea I used to do Doggcrapp before, and with it eat 4.5kcal / day, 275g of proteins / day. Now I switched to CF, I eat 2.5kcal / day, 165g of protein / day. I also stopped taking creatine.

Now before I started CF, I maxed out squat at 270lbs, and I managed 315lbs on deadlift 5x. Two days ago, I couldn't do 270lbs on squat, and just today I barely dished out 3 reps on deadlift. Is it possible that my strength went down because CF isn't well enough adapted for me strength-wise? Or more likely because in the change of my diet?

Also, I got (or made?) a shin splint this Monday on the sprint WOD. Today it wasn't painful, but Tuesday it was quite painful when I was going down or up the stairs. Could it be another factor that affected my strength?
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Old 11-08-2007, 11:52 AM   #2
Steven Low
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Re: Ever since I started doing Crossfit, my strength has gone down... Any reasons why

What's your routine look like?

Are you feeling tired/exhausted/hard to eat/etc. (E.g. symptoms of overreaching)? If so, take a couple days off. This generally happens when you switch routines and get straight to high intensity stuff like CF.

Could be diet too if that's not enough cals for your body. What about sleep?
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Old 11-08-2007, 12:06 PM   #3
Nicolas Castonguay
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Re: Ever since I started doing Crossfit, my strength has gone down... Any reasons why

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Originally Posted by Steven Low View Post
What's your routine look like?

Are you feeling tired/exhausted/hard to eat/etc. (E.g. symptoms of overreaching)? If so, take a couple days off. This generally happens when you switch routines and get straight to high intensity stuff like CF.

Could be diet too if that's not enough cals for your body. What about sleep?
I'm never tired, and I overtrained recently on Doggcrapp so I know how it's like and I'm not getting this from CF. As for the intensity, strength-wise DC was much more intense than CF so I doubt the intensity is affecting it. As for sleep, it varies, some nights I get 6h, others 8-9 hours.
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Old 11-08-2007, 12:14 PM   #4
Steven Low
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Re: Ever since I started doing Crossfit, my strength has gone down... Any reasons why

Probably just CNS burnout then.
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Old 11-08-2007, 01:31 PM   #5
Patrick Donnelly
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Re: Ever since I started doing Crossfit, my strength has gone down... Any reasons why

The shin splints are caused by improper running form.

Your running should be similar to this guy's, and while he may look like a moron doing it, he doesn't have any shin pain. (All Work/Family Safe.)
http://youtube.com/watch?v=ykl7jX3F77E
http://youtube.com/watch?v=q6XDIhADsgw
http://youtube.com/watch?v=T8gEvhQyFRg

Land on your forefeet, don't "reach" out for the ground in front of you, lift your foot of the ground using your hamstrings (not quads; it's like a less exaggerated "butt kicks" running drill), take short steps at a very fast pace, and do plenty of jump rope to help give your calves the extra conditioning they will need. If you search for "Pose" running form, you'll probably find some more info. (Warning: The Pose website offers very little material unless you pay for it, and CrossFitters who have bought it said it is a complete rip off. Once you get some practice in, you'll know when you have it or not.)

Here's a nice little graphic: (Work/Family Safe.)
http://www.newtonrunning.com/run_better.php


If you really can't get it, do 300 air squats and then try to run. I assure you that you won't be able to use your quads to do it then.
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Old 11-08-2007, 01:32 PM   #6
Tim Donahey
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Re: Ever since I started doing Crossfit, my strength has gone down... Any reasons why

If the shin splints were bad enough that could affect your strength, or more accuratley it could be sending your CNS mixed signals of your strength capacity so you don't injure yourself further. Creatine cessation will definatley lower your strength, though not that much.

How long did you rest after DC, before CF. Could be burnout.

There's two things that lead to believe you're getting burned out. 1) The shin splints; overuse injuries tend to crop up when your CNS gets fatigued 2) You've only been doing CF two weeks and your lifts are going down. Even with zero strength training, over a two week period I wouldn't expect your strength to go down very much, let alone 20 lbs on your squat.

Take a week (7 days) off, address your shin splints, take a hot tub, get a massage. The intensity of DC is very different compared to the intensity of CF, it could be hitting you hard.
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Old 11-08-2007, 02:54 PM   #7
Matt Thomas
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Re: Ever since I started doing Crossfit, my strength has gone down... Any reasons why

mmmmmmm. Anyone please feel free to correct me if I'm wrong, but couldn't it just be because DC is geared more toward strength than Crossfit? I thought it was understood that you take a slight hit in strength (and everything else) to be well rounded? I mean that's sort of like saying I use to powerlift and now I do Crossfit, why can't I squat as much anymore? I know DC isn't powerlifting, but still it's main focus is to increase weight lifted if I remember right. If you're not going to focuse exclusively on getting your numbers up anymore then you might take a slight hit to have better overall fitness in other areas.
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Old 11-08-2007, 03:46 PM   #8
Steven Low
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Re: Ever since I started doing Crossfit, my strength has gone down... Any reasons why

Well, usually you take a hit as the CNS 'adaptations' disappear as you don't work the exercises as frequently.. which can occur within 1-2 weeks if not trained much.

In general, the method of diagnosing things is looking at:
1. Changes in diet/sleep schedule
2. Taking off anywhere from 3-7 days to allow fatigue to dissipate
3. Anything else
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Old 11-08-2007, 03:51 PM   #9
Tim Donahey
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Re: Ever since I started doing Crossfit, my strength has gone down... Any reasons why

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mmmmmmm. Anyone please feel free to correct me if I'm wrong, but couldn't it just be because DC is geared more toward strength than Crossfit? I thought it was understood that you take a slight hit in strength (and everything else) to be well rounded? I mean that's sort of like saying I use to powerlift and now I do Crossfit, why can't I squat as much anymore? I know DC isn't powerlifting, but still it's main focus is to increase weight lifted if I remember right. If you're not going to focuse exclusively on getting your numbers up anymore then you might take a slight hit to have better overall fitness in other areas.
I strongly disagree. An advanced or elite lifter might have to take a hit, because their training requires complex specificity, but not an intermediate lifter and not after only 2 weeks on Crossfit. He should continue to progress on his lifts for some time (years) before plateauing. Saying that all powerlifters who switch from a strict pl routine to CF will lose strength seriously undermines crossfit principles.
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Old 11-08-2007, 04:10 PM   #10
Tim Donahey
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Re: Ever since I started doing Crossfit, my strength has gone down... Any reasons why

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Well, usually you take a hit as the CNS 'adaptations' disappear as you don't work the exercises as frequently.. which can occur within 1-2 weeks if not trained much.
20 lbs off of a 270lb squat (13.5%) is quite a lot to lose in two weeks.
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