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Old 05-12-2008, 08:21 AM   #11
Aaron Moburg-Jones
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Re: Dave Castro's CF Games Article

With hindsight (and the recognition that a good part of first post was just rambling) I think there are two interesting takeaways.

First, don't discount how long someone has been training even if it is not CF. Tracy Fober over at Iron Maven calls it "Training Life" (or something like that). It is really just a recognition that it often takes a decade or more to develop the skills/strength/coordination/practice to achieve a consistant level of proficiency at something (strength, endurance, technique, speed). That decade cannot easily be replicated with a crash course or even a few years of CF.

The tie to the games is that the best finishers were former collegiate athletes and fitness professionals. Decades of training in almost anything plus 2 years or less of CF beats a short "training life" even if it included 5 years of CF.

Second, amongst those with the longest training lives AND best CF skills (the top finishers in the games) you see further proof of this point. OPT and AFT have running backgrounds and they took 2nd and 3rd in the run. They have hockey and basketball brackgrounds so high work capacity workouts punctuated by intense bursts (like a hopper) suited them well too. Josh had a strength background and played two sports that emphasized strength and speed (track and football plus a decade or more of real strength training during and after those sports). He killed the CFT and has higher relative and absolute strength than the other two. So even amongst the elite, discrepencies in performance breakdown largely in terms what they have long training lives in.

Non-fitness/sport professionals who do best at CF seem to be first responder/military types. Why? Because, flawed as their testing systems may be, they at least make people balance endurance and strength workouts. I work out in military gyms. It is full of guys going for 10k runs and pushing up their bench totals. Sure none of them squat right, but take someone with a decade or weight training sufficient to give them a 250-315lb bench and and they will be squating 2x bodyweight in less than a year. They won't be doing bad on those 400m runs either if they can ace the 5k on their PT test either.

I think we sometimes don't give sufficient credit to people's TOTAL training background, not just their CF background. I can't wait to see people competing at the games who have been doing CF their whole lives so they have a long training life AND a long CF life.
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Old 05-13-2008, 02:33 PM   #12
Jim Glover
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Re: Dave Castro's CF Games Article

Well I'll be darned.
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Old 05-13-2008, 03:04 PM   #13
Brandon Oto
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Re: Dave Castro's CF Games Article

I'm in absolute agreement. Failure to recognize an athlete's prior background really screws up most people's attempts to analyze good CFers and what makes them tick. Frankly, CF hasn't existed for long enough to produce really long-term athletes whose first step inside a gym was for a WoD.

Anyone know anyone in this community, anywhere, who's a really monster CFer... and who didn't begin CF with a previous athletic background?

Anyone? Bueller?
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Old 05-13-2008, 04:59 PM   #14
Steven Low
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Re: Dave Castro's CF Games Article

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Originally Posted by Brandon Oto View Post
I'm in absolute agreement. Failure to recognize an athlete's prior background really screws up most people's attempts to analyze good CFers and what makes them tick. Frankly, CF hasn't existed for long enough to produce really long-term athletes whose first step inside a gym was for a WoD.

Anyone know anyone in this community, anywhere, who's a really monster CFer... and who didn't begin CF with a previous athletic background?

Anyone? Bueller?
Only people I can recall are maybe someone from like CF kids like Connor... possibly. Not sure if he had a sports background before starting CF though.
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Old 05-13-2008, 09:10 PM   #15
Dale F. Saran
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Re: Dave Castro's CF Games Article

I am told by a reliable source that Greg Amundson started at CFSC and was not even in the firebreather class. He asked to join it in an effort to push himself along. I am not sure, but he probably had some athletic background; by the accounts I have heard, however, he was not even in the same class as some of the "elites". He simply busted his a$$ and was extraordinarily dedicated. I don't know if that would count or not.

Some of the kids coming up will be interesting case studies. They won't have "years" of training behind them. Heck, I'm trying to think of the 13 year old girl who won the Spirit award (and also cracked me on the run) at the Games. She is a high level (9 or 10) gymnast, but she's still a 13 year old girl. She was amazing. Would you call her "elite" because she has "years" of training as a gymnast? I've got t-shirts that are older than her. By a lot.

I agree with Steven, but there's also something else to keep in mind - the scoring system. I came in tied for 10th (I think) with Freddie C. and I was an absolute trainwreck on the run. But I think I was 4th in the CFT. And I'm not anywhere near the top 10 of CFers out there. I'm not even in the top 10%. I just happened to have been there and I can lift a decent total for my size. I think there may have been a "disproportionate" weight given to CFT scores. So, take it for what it's worth.

It's just pretty cool to watch guys like Speal, Josh E., Bret, and James, and gals like Jolie Gentry or that young gal go out and just get after it. It's inspiring, even for old guys.

Last edited by Dale F. Saran : 05-13-2008 at 09:12 PM.
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Old 05-13-2008, 09:57 PM   #16
Steven Low
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Re: Dave Castro's CF Games Article

Yeah, with more people influxing to the games this year it seems like a couple things will happen:

1. You can't be too big that you'll get killed by the run.
2. You can't be too small that you can't lift worth beans.

Unfortunately, even though Speal is pretty small (at 135 lbs), with the large amount of people that are going to turn out his CFT score will go into the crapper most likely unless he can bust out like 3x squat and dead and 2x press. Even if he gets near the top of the run & hopper it really might totally screw him over. It's similar for big guys on the run.

In the end, if you win the hopper and can get in the top 10 in CFT and run you'll most likely finish on the podium I bet. We'll have to seen though.
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Old 05-14-2008, 03:30 AM   #17
Brandon Oto
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Re: Dave Castro's CF Games Article

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Originally Posted by Dale F. Saran View Post
Heck, I'm trying to think of the 13 year old girl who won the Spirit award (and also cracked me on the run) at the Games. She is a high level (9 or 10) gymnast, but she's still a 13 year old girl. She was amazing. Would you call her "elite" because she has "years" of training as a gymnast?
I don't think it's necessarily about being already "elite" in something... obviously most people aren't. But as Dan John says, all training is complementary; the guy or girl who's spent years training SOMEHOW isn't suddenly a beginner just because they started CF and a metcon kicked their ***.
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Old 05-14-2008, 09:22 AM   #18
Aaron Moburg-Jones
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Re: Dave Castro's CF Games Article

At the risk of sounding repetitive, Brandon makes the point I was trying to get across much less long windedly. And Dale may be a case in point for what we are saying. I'll bet that, even if you weren't doing all the lifts CF does, you have been a fairly serious weight lifter for some time. As someone who hasn't lifted weights a great deal or very consistantly for my life, it is folly to think that I will approach your CFT anytime soon. It's the difference between decades in the gym and years in the gym.

CF has perfected the training of some already incredible athletes and that's awesome. It's also brought beginners (raw beginners or beginners in certain skills) pretty far along and made them into well rounded athletes of note.

I'm not going to the CF games this year, but I will be really excited to see how it goes.

And Dale, if that is true about Greg, that is pretty insane. I did mention that, other than professional athletes, the people who seem to do the best are military/LEO types because even if their training sucked, they had to run and they had to lift and they were scored for it. That simple concept put them far ahead of your average gym goer.
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