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Old 07-10-2005, 10:08 AM   #1
Clifton E. Volatile
 
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Hi all, I'm new to CF I guess, i've only been doing it for about 6 weeks. It's been great so far but I'm afraid my initial gains have been more of me getting neorologically efficient rather than conrete gains. I read that athletes use 25% of their muscle fiber but after crossfit and body weight exercises you can get upt to 50-60%.

My question is would I benefit more from a weightlifting/weight-gain program to increase my bulk muscle fiber before going back to crossfit to become more efficient?
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Old 07-10-2005, 03:33 PM   #2
David Wood
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Hello Clifton, welcome to CrossFit!

You don't say much about yourself, so I don't think anyone can answer you realistically.

But, it probably doesn't matter . . . unless you're painfully, anorectically thin (6'3" and 100 pounds, say), you're pretty much only going to get one answer here: Do the WOD (making adaptations as necessary).

(Oh, and follow the Zone diet, too . . . I guess that's two recommendations).

CrossFit will definitely improve your muscle "skill" (or efficiency), but the experience of hundreds of people will tell you that over time it will also build quite a bit of muscle mass, too.

Note, however, that if your goal is to look like one of the models in the "bodybuilding" magazines, this is the wrong program. If you'd like to be much stronger than you look, you've come to the right place.
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Old 07-10-2005, 05:32 PM   #3
Clifton E. Volatile
 
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I'm 17 I'm 6'1" 165 lbs.

Well i maxed out today (no one home to spot me so I had to roll the bar to my abs and pull myself out from under the bar.) I can get 160 one rep. I'm happy with my improvement but I'm still unhappy with my strength. I'm going to keep doing CF and am going to incorporate lifting (benching curling and maybe some sort of butterfly exercise) into the days when those muscle groups arent being punished. I'm also going to do planches and front levers after practice and am going to start rowing every day.

My goal isn't to look like a model or anything, although I do want to be ripped ;) But no, this isn't for aesthetics. I'm doing this so that I can be healthy and fit when I go to college. My brother and I have been teaching ourselves Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and we're about to start learning (first lessons tomorrow) bushinko (something like that), shadoki (something like that), and kickboxing from olympic gold medalist Joe Sabouri. In college in the fall I'm going to take martial arts on campus and when I'm allowed a car my second year i'm going to start taking Jiu Jitsu in the city. I want to start competing next summer.
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Old 07-11-2005, 04:50 AM   #4
Larry Lindenman
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Clifton, your heart is in the right place...and welcome. This is the best conditioning program around for martial arts. Please read through the free Crossfit Journals and suscribe. Movements like flys and curls will do nothing to improve performance and actually create imbalances. The pullup is actually a much more effective bicep builder. I would encourage you to do the WOD and then add skill practice. In addition to skill practice you can develop pullup strength by doing 50 pullups a day, every day. Hang a bar in your doorway, garage, basement, or get to a park. I usually do 3X10 in warmups and two more sets of 10 when I get home from work. Good luck.
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Old 07-11-2005, 06:55 AM   #5
Ryan Abbott
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Hi Clifton, I am a newbie here myself but if you are interested in strength you might want to check out this thread:

http://www.crossfit.com/discus/messages/21/11280.html

It references Pavel Tsatsoulane's book Power to the People which is all about strength.

Good luck on your quest, pay attention to what the people here have to say, I have learned a ton just from reading the archives on this site. You may also want to post at Dragondoor, they have some very intelligent posters over there as well, pay particular attention to Steve Maxwell's posts, you may want to address this question to him as well.
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Old 07-11-2005, 02:10 PM   #6
Rusty Shakleford
 
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"Movements like flys and curls will do nothing to improve performance and actually create imbalances."

I wouldn't say they do "Nothing". They're not as much bang for your buck though.
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Old 07-11-2005, 08:02 PM   #7
Beth Moscov
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Rusty - it depends on what you mean by "performance". I tend to agree with Larry. Training in isolation leads to muscles that only work in isolation. I prefer my biceps to help me along when I hang onto the neck or head or gi of an opponent while they stand up or I choke them out. pullups and rowing and other crossfit stuff works great for that.
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Old 07-23-2005, 12:29 AM   #8
Kalen Meine
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I, as a fellow of a similar age and size, have to reiterate the uselessness of isolations. And I also urge you to think a bit more about "only being more neurologically efficient" vs. "concrete gains." You challenge your body, and it can adapt in dozens of ways, improving muscle unit recruitment, firing rate, myofibral density, sarcoplasmic hypertrophy, mitochondria division, improved vascular development, fiber type transitions, enzyme content changes....and none of them are any more or less valid or important than the others. Don't worry about mass- you're gonna look good, and you are going to perform even better. I'm sure when you can do 50 pullups your biceps will be sufficiently pleasing, and you'll be a scary mothercardioer to boot. Patience. Embrace the pain. More patience.
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Old 07-23-2005, 05:56 AM   #9
Jason Berger
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You really need to check out Power to the People or the Naked Warrior, by Pavel Tsatsouline. In PTP he uses weights and in Naked Warrior he uses bodyweight exercises, but both books are about reprogramming your muscle software to output freaky amounts of strength.

The freebie version of it: squeeze your butt, abs, and hands for more power. Use in low rep sets or at the end of a higher rep set when you need an extra boost.
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Old 07-23-2005, 07:10 AM   #10
Ryan Abbott
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Nice freebie version Jason. However, as a point of clarification, squeeze your butt like you are trying to pinch a coin with it. Don't use your hands for this.:lol:
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