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

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Old 09-19-2005, 05:02 PM   #1
Ashley Rogers
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My friend Don who competes as a teen bodybuilder was wanting to know what the effects would be if he included some CrossFit exercises (push ups, dips, pull ups, push-press, bodyweight squats, thrusters, farmer walks, rowing, sprints, etc) in with his bodybuilder split.

Anyone have any thoughts?
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Old 09-19-2005, 07:27 PM   #2
Scott McAndrews
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I think it will improve his general physical preparedness which is, I believe, the goal of Crossfit. I think this is a good idea for anyone, no matter their overall goals. Also, it would probably help him to be more like the old-school bodybuilders, like John Grimek, who I'm pretty sure were required to perform olympic lifts and gymnastics movements in the old time bodybuilding contests. This might not help him now as a bodybuilder, but he'll be a lot better athlete than a lot of the other bodybuilders!
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Old 09-19-2005, 07:44 PM   #3
Russ Greene
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Adding crossfit workouts would help him identify his weaknesses, improve his ability to recover from his bodybuilding workouts, and add variety to his routine, all good things. I also have a hard time believing than anyone with a sub 3 fran, sub 4 diane, 2.5 bodyweight deadlift, and 10 muscle-ups in a row is going to have anything other than a very impressive physique. I think the bodybuilder would be better off doing whole workouts than just picking and choosing exercises and doing them bodybuilder-style. The genius of crossfit is combining relatively light weightlifting with a relatively small amount of cardio and very basic gymnastics exercises, yet producing workouts that are much more than their sum of their parts (and much harder than one would expect just looking at those parts.)
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Old 09-19-2005, 10:07 PM   #4
Scott McAndrews
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Another idea would be to do a variation of Coach Rut's ME Black Box workouts. Day one = Crossfit, Day two = Traditional Bodybuilding routine, Day three = Crossfit, Day four = rest, Day five = Traditional Bodybuilding routine, Day six = Crossfit, Day Seven = Tradional Bodybuilding routine, Day eight = rest, etc. Just an idea, not sure how well it'd work. I might be "thinking in the box" in my belief that a bodybuilder would need to perform a more traditional bodybuilding routine at all rather than just doing Crossfit. I'd be interested in what other more experienced Crossfitters had to say.
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Old 09-20-2005, 12:16 AM   #5
Aaron Jones
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I'll be curious to see the results as well. Quite honestly, I thihnk in the short term it may slightly detract from his bodybuilding goals. It will improve his iverall fitness. Like all fringe athletes (I'm still deciding whether I like that term as a triathlete and marathoner) bodybuilders choose to work on one aspect of fitness over all others because they only get graded on that one aspect. However, in the long term, I think it would help him, and here's my reasoning. Crossfit acts as a simultaneous periodization. High rep pull-ups, push-ups, sprints, bodysquats, add muscular endurance allowing a bodybuilder to lift a few more reps (and traditioanlly body builders do relatively high rep sets). Some of the powerlifting and oly style workouts crossfitters do should improve his top end strength allowing him to lift heaveier weights. What happenes when you can lift heavier weights for higher reps? Hypertrophy! His best bet may be to add crossfit in the offseason and improve his fitness so that he can accomplish better bodybuilding workouts later.

And while I agree that someone with sub four fran, sub 4 Diane, muscle-up stud and 2.5 X bodyweight DL would have the kind of physique I want, he probably would not do very well in a bodybuilding competition because he would be too small. Crossfit preaches the most strength in the smallest package. Bodybuilders care little for usable muscle, they just want size. I got no problem with that, just don't confuse it with fitness.
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Old 09-20-2005, 12:19 AM   #6
Kalen Meine
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Umm...his muscles would grow? Seriously, (and with no offense to the thread starter, please understand), if you put more weight on the bar, or go faster, or do more reps, and whether the enabling change in your body was increase in muscular cross-section, (bulk) or neuromuscular...whatever (related to muscle tone), or loss of fat, it probably looks good sans shirt. In all the old, Sandow-esque literature, they just talk about body "development"- more weight off the ground, good, bigger muscles while wearing a leopard pelt, good. There wasn't a distinction. Tommy Kono won O-lifting titles and Mr. Universe titles within months (weeks? days?) of each other. The broad back and glutes you get from something as basic as pulling a weight off the floor happen to look attractive. From a BB perspective, a push press or jerk is a forced rep (read- extra intensity and more "pump") you can do yourself. It also happens to develop strong back, hips, and power habits, but whatever. Sprints repeats cut sub-q fat better than steady state exercise, and, since sprints are a strength exercise, can necessitate muscle growth. Rowing is cardio that uses upper body muscle- read: new stimulus = growth. Pullups strengthen the back, which is often the limiting factor in adding weight to curls. We like to grow muscles too- how big they look when I'm tanned out of my skull and greased and haven't eaten in two days just doesn't happen to be at the top of the list. Does he need that 5k yesterday? Probably not. Could he still stand some curls? Sure. But a weight is a weight, and he can only stand to benefit from lifting them intelligently.
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Old 09-20-2005, 03:42 AM   #7
Allen Yeh
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I think it said this in the FAQ from greater to lesser in hypertrophy:

1. bb'ing on gear
2. crossfit on gear
3. crossfit without gear
4. bb'ing without gear

http://www.mitymous.net/weights/xfitfaq.htm#19
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Old 09-20-2005, 05:52 AM   #8
Ben Kaminski
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He'll basically see what most Crossfitters see: get a little leaner, lose some weight and gain some strength.
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Old 09-20-2005, 06:04 AM   #9
Joshua F Hillis
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The other benefit of mixing up CrossFit days with his bodybuilding days - he'll have more fun, you never know, he might even puke.
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Old 09-20-2005, 06:54 AM   #10
Ryan Abbott
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Not to butt in here but the original question was about CrossFit exercises. Well... I don't think that there really are any CF exercises per se, CrossFit is more about how exercises are linked together; and these are exercises drawn from many areas. How will the exercises effect his bodybuilding? I have little information to offer except that he should work those big exercises that Cf uses, i.e., squat, deadlift, snatch, c&j. He should get Pavels Beyond Bodybuilding, I hear it is a great book on bodybuilding that helps you be as strong as you look.

Good luck.
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