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Old 11-08-2011, 08:39 AM   #1
Jayme Gruber
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Leaving Conventional Gym for CrossFit Full-time. Question?

Hello all,

First time posting here, just had a question thatís been weighing on my mind since I decided to quit my regular gym and start doing CrossFit full-time.

A little about me: Iím male 28, 5í10Ē and 170lbs

Iíve been a member at a traditional gym for about 4 or 5 months training very hard, was in generally good shape before joining (in and out of different gyms for the last few years, runner, etc) and am starting to get somewhat defined and happy with my results. I eat a good diet, once every 2.5 hours, high protein, vegetables, complex carbs.

I started doing CrossFit twice a week about a month ago and am quickly becoming obsessed with it, I love it. And when Iím in the regular gym just doing sets I find myself now bored and wishing I was at CrossFit so I decided to quit the gym and start a full-time membership at a CF gym in my neighborhood.

My concern is, Iím used to spending a good 45 minutes in the gym, concentrating on specific body parts five days a week (Chest/Back/Shoulders/Arm/Legs) alternating cardio and abs after ever workout. While I do find this approach now boring, Iím worried that it also is a fundamentally sound way to gain the strength/mass I want. I want to lose body fat, gain muscle, get more defined and be at least 180lbs. I know CrossFit has traditional lifts combined with everything else, but can simply doing CrossFit (2 on 1 off or 3 on 1 off) weekly give me what Iím looking for, or do I still need to have that more traditional weight lifting routine as well? I just feel weird knowing that Iíll no longer be doing chest flys, curls, calf extensions, etcÖ I know my gym has a ďstrengthĒ day once or twice a week, an open gyms, so perhaps I can go on those days to do a few of the things that Iíll be missing out on.

Hopefully this is a common concern and youíll have some good advice for me.

Iím very excited to be starting this new chapter and look forward to everything, just want to make sure itís everything Iím expecting.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 11-08-2011, 09:46 AM   #2
Neil Kanterman
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Re: Leaving Conventional Gym for CrossFit Full-time. Question?

If strength is what you are after, then doing a strength program alongside your CrossFit workouts should hit that nicely. There are a number of strength programs that seem to hybridize well with doing CrossFit workouts. The most popular ones here seem to be Starting Strength, Jim Wendler's 5/3/1, Westside's Conjugate program, Greyskull's linear progression, plus some others.

Alternatively, there are a number of CrossFit programs that focus particularly on strength, namely Hybrid Athletics and CrossFit Football. They both post daily workouts.

My only advice to you is that you may want to rethink what you think a strength program is. What all the programs lifted above have in common is a solid foundation of core, compound multi-joint movements done for heavy weight, lower reps. The deadlift, the squat, pressing, etc. Not your classic Muscle & Fitness routine which includes a day for arms, shoulders etc.

Plus if you want to pack on some weight...you're gonna have to eat. A lot. Eating every 2.5 hours isn't really necessary if you are just getting the daily calories.

Good luck on your journey.
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Old 11-08-2011, 10:47 AM   #3
Jayme Gruber
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Re: Leaving Conventional Gym for CrossFit Full-time. Question?

Thanks Neil, I will definitely take some time to look into all of the programs you mentioned.

Iím not looking to get huge by any means, Iíd be extremely happy if at my height (5í10Ē) I was 185lbs and a body fat % <10

I guess Iím just a little weary of assuming that can be achieved at my CrossFit gym only, but Iím not going to have a $135 CF membership and an additional $40 gym membership for lifting. I should be able to do all of those compound workouts at the CF gym so hopefully Iíll be fine.

I feel like I do eat a lot, I donít expect a full critique of my diet, but does this seem alright for what my goals?

07:30AM Cup of egg whites, cup of ham/green pepper/mushroom mixture fried together
10:00AM Protein shake
12:30PM Cup of chicken, cup of rice, cup of veggies
03:00PM Protein bar
05:30PM Tuna wrap w spinach
Protein shake before and after my workout 06:30-07:30
09:00PM Salmon fillet and vegetables
Casein shake before bed

Thanks again!
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Old 11-08-2011, 11:27 PM   #4
Sandon Viers
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Re: Leaving Conventional Gym for CrossFit Full-time. Question?

I would eat more real food. You have 4 shakes a day and a protein bar, which is a lot. Trade the shakes out for healthy fats and meat to increase your caloric intake.
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Old 11-09-2011, 01:03 AM   #5
Ben Joven
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Re: Leaving Conventional Gym for CrossFit Full-time. Question?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jayme Gruber View Post
Hello all,

First time posting here, just had a question thatís been weighing on my mind since I decided to quit my regular gym and start doing CrossFit full-time.

A little about me: Iím male 28, 5í10Ē and 170lbs

Iíve been a member at a traditional gym for about 4 or 5 months training very hard, was in generally good shape before joining (in and out of different gyms for the last few years, runner, etc) and am starting to get somewhat defined and happy with my results. I eat a good diet, once every 2.5 hours, high protein, vegetables, complex carbs.

I started doing CrossFit twice a week about a month ago and am quickly becoming obsessed with it, I love it. And when Iím in the regular gym just doing sets I find myself now bored and wishing I was at CrossFit so I decided to quit the gym and start a full-time membership at a CF gym in my neighborhood.

My concern is, Iím used to spending a good 45 minutes in the gym, concentrating on specific body parts five days a week (Chest/Back/Shoulders/Arm/Legs) alternating cardio and abs after ever workout. While I do find this approach now boring, Iím worried that it also is a fundamentally sound way to gain the strength/mass I want. I want to lose body fat, gain muscle, get more defined and be at least 180lbs. I know CrossFit has traditional lifts combined with everything else, but can simply doing CrossFit (2 on 1 off or 3 on 1 off) weekly give me what Iím looking for, or do I still need to have that more traditional weight lifting routine as well? I just feel weird knowing that Iíll no longer be doing chest flys, curls, calf extensions, etcÖ I know my gym has a ďstrengthĒ day once or twice a week, an open gyms, so perhaps I can go on those days to do a few of the things that Iíll be missing out on.

Hopefully this is a common concern and youíll have some good advice for me.

Iím very excited to be starting this new chapter and look forward to everything, just want to make sure itís everything Iím expecting.

Thanks in advance!
Squat more, deadlift more, eat mass amounts of grass fed beef and wild caught salmon and you'll get there.

That's exactly how I gained 10 lbs of muscle and lowering my body fat from 10% to 8% in 30 days. I also was living on a homemade protein bar concoctionmade of almond butter, gluten free vanilla whey protein and flax seed.
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Old 11-09-2011, 07:11 AM   #6
Jayme Gruber
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Re: Leaving Conventional Gym for CrossFit Full-time. Question?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sandon Viers View Post
I would eat more real food. You have 4 shakes a day and a protein bar, which is a lot. Trade the shakes out for healthy fats and meat to increase your caloric intake.
I figured that was probably too much protein powder. I like the idea of taking it after working out to get it into my system asap. But I'm sure it would suit me better to eat more real food. Is it wrong to think that I don't want to up my caloric intake too much, since I'm trying to lose body fat (my stomach) or will the amount of working out I'm doing naturally strip that down anyway?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben Joven View Post
Squat more, deadlift more, eat mass amounts of grass fed beef and wild caught salmon and you'll get there.

That's exactly how I gained 10 lbs of muscle and lowering my body fat from 10% to 8% in 30 days. I also was living on a homemade protein bar concoctionmade of almond butter, gluten free vanilla whey protein and flax seed.
I think I'm going to definitely going on our strength days and focus on all of the starting strength lifts.

I'm definitely a creature of habit and have no problem eating the same thing everyday, I'm not big on beef but if I could come up with a recipe that I liked I'd have no problem swapping out my 10:00 meal with it. I'll have to think on it and mess around in the kitchen. I already have egg whites for breakfast, chicken for lunch and salmon for dinner everyday so I'll look into this too.

Thanks guys!

Last edited by Jayme Gruber; 11-09-2011 at 07:14 AM..
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Old 11-09-2011, 10:21 AM   #7
Brendan McNamar
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Re: Leaving Conventional Gym for CrossFit Full-time. Question?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jayme Gruber View Post
While I do find this approach now boring, Iím worried that it also is a fundamentally sound way to gain the strength/mass I want. I want to lose body fat, gain muscle, get more defined and be at least 180lbs.
1) Your current program doesn't seem to have you where you want to be so lets forget the old way because it didn't produce the results you want. I think it fails to be "Fundamentally sound way to ....".

2) CrossFit style met-cons will help you loose your belly and they will prevent you from putting on 10 pounds of lean muscle. You already have a lifting back ground so chances are you won't get a quick pop in lean muscle mass like the untrained do.

3) You have to decide what you want. Strength can be built while dropping excess body fat. Mass is very difficult to builds while lowering body fat. Typically on the programs that will build mass you will maintain or even increase body fat some while lifting heavy and eating everything in sight. Then you back of eating everything lean out and keep the lean muscle mass. Done correctly you can probably gain two pound lean muscle for each extra pound of body fat. At least that was my experience.

4) Carbohydrates are undesirable, real protein and fat is desirable for your goals. Forget egg whites, use Omega 3 enriched eggs and eat the whole egg. You will need beef and pork in your diet to supply fattier protein sources. If you use chicken and turkey as a protein source then you need to add healthy fats to the meal. Olive oil, avocado, nuts (but not peanuts) and so on.

My personal recommendation is 90 days regular CrossFit. Eat Paleo or Zone so you learn how to eat well with real food. The after 90 days you can talk to your coaches if you want to slant your training in favor of strength/mass gain. It seems the people who learn CrossFit, diet first and then start to bias their training have the most success.
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Old 11-09-2011, 10:35 AM   #8
Jayme Gruber
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Re: Leaving Conventional Gym for CrossFit Full-time. Question?

A coworker who does CrossFit recently turned me on to Paleo, I think I'm going to get a book and check it out. I don't want to gain a lot of mass, 10 lbs would be great, I really just want to have a more cut look. And I'm alright with maintaining my current bodyfat to get there and then leaning out afterwards. I'm going to try to start eating more, and come December I'll be full time CrossFit so maybe I'll start a Paleo diet then and give it a solid month, see if I like the results.
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Old 11-09-2011, 09:05 PM   #9
Blair Robert Lowe
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Re: Leaving Conventional Gym for CrossFit Full-time. Question?

What can you do with the basic lifts? Squat, Bench, Deadlift?

I can't fathom any reason why most people at standard gyms should be doing body part splits unless they are already pretty strong or as strong as they'd like to be.

I'd ask the crossfit gym if you can fit in strength work before WODs, perhaps just a 3x5 or 5x5. That could also be done on open gym days.

1-2x/week for strength isn't as good as 2-3x or 3-4x.
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Old 11-10-2011, 02:48 AM   #10
Rob Samuels
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Re: Leaving Conventional Gym for CrossFit Full-time. Question?

So crossfit to alleviate boredom? Ok I will bite but you still need to identify some goals if in fact you are interested in any. If not then mainsite might keep you interested.Metcon mania and massive amounts of useless fringe exercises will probably not get you where I'm guessing you want to be. But. I could be way off base, thats up to you.
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