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Old 07-28-2008, 03:25 PM   #1
Brian Bailey
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BIG questions!

Hello,

I'm new to CrossFit (first post!) and am very interested in the CrossFit approach. My ultimate goal is to be able to simply make up a routine before I go in to the gym or wherever I'm working out, based on how much time I have, the equipment I have to hand, what I feel like doing, and what I've already done in the recent past, then do it - much like the person who creates the WOD just knows what to put down each time.

After thoroughly reading and understanding (?!) all the available literature on the CrossFit approach, what I am now attempting to do is use the CrossFit methodology to tailor each workout I do. I am doing this by every week attempting to address:

1) All the basic gymnastics movements (pull-up, push-up, L-sit, etc.)
2) All the major functional lifts, both explosive (snatches, high pulls, etc.) and strength based (squat, deadlift, etc.)
3) Some form of metabolic conditioning, be it by traditional sprint intervals, or by alternating between push-ups and pull-ups at high speed for five minutes, or some other method that gets my heart racing and my lungs gasping for air.

I am also attempting to address the 10 General Physical Skills each week - which I can do via a combination of plyometrics, martial arts practice, yoga, post workout stretching, the side-effects of training, and mucking about with any sports I feel like doing. I will of course do all of these things in as many different ways as possible, using as many different cominations as possible.

I have a few questions which I'd appreciate any opinions or possible help on, especially from those who are certified to make CrossFit WODs and programs. If you only have time to read and help me with one question that's cool!

Thanks in advance for putting up with the amount of text I appear to have generated here! Thank you for your patience in reading this, and for your help.


QUESTIONS!

a) A question about my approach:

Do you think the approach I've outlined above (including gymnastics, Olympic lifts and metabolic conditioning and adressing the 10 General Physical Skills, all over a seven day period, in as many combinations and different sized amounts as possible) will work? Is it correct application of CrossFit's methods? I say seven day period because from experience I've found that roughly seven days after doing some form of activity, be it strength work, bodyweight work or some form of cardio, I've then started to lose the ablility I've gained. I believe this to be related to something called the "supercompensation curve". Should I be putting days when I do activities involving, say, pushing roughly equidistant from the last time I worked these faculties (the same going for pulling, my legs, and cardio), so one doesn't improve more than another, and so I don't overtrain one faculty?

b) A question about the elements of fitness:

Is it necessary to include all aspects of 1), 2) and 3) above to every part of my body - that is, do I need to complete push-ups and chest press on a regular basis (not necessarily on the same day!) blending each one in equal parts or will one suffice when I'm not doing the other?

If I do push-ups for three weeks every so often, will my bench-press increase and functional pushing strength increase, and if I do bench-press for several weeks, will my number of press-ups to failure be higher? Essentially, I'm wondering if covering one muscle area (such as legs, pulling, overhead pressing or pushing myself up from the ground) will be maintained regardless of how I train it (by olympic lifts, max bodyweight reps, etc) or whether I need to incorporate all elements (for example push-ups with bodyweight to failure, and bench-press for strength) on a regular basis. Surely each faculty will start to wane if not addressed regularly?

c) A question about intensity (or how many sets and reps I need):

I'm obviously going to be training with intensity and I can make the intensity high with Olympic lifts by cranking the weight up to the highest I can lift after warm-up, and can crank the intensity of bodyweight exercises up by going to failure, but how do I know that if I feel like doing say a max bench press of 100KG, repeated for five sets of 1-1-1-1-1, it will match the intensity of 5 sets of bodyweight push-ups to failure?

I'm worried that using one technique will not necessarily improve the other, and if it's not at the correct intensity it may not maintain the other ability either (that is, if I bench press 100KG for five sets on Monday and then Thursday, each somewhere in the workout, when it comes to Sunday and I do a set of push-ups to failure which I haven't trained for two weeks, will I still be able to do as many push-ups, or will I be able to do less?). The goal of CrossFit I assume, is to improve ability in each of the 10 General Physical Skills over time, even if the path of improvement of one skill does not progress as quickly or as smoothly as the another?

d) A question about inclusion of each element of Olympic weightlifting, gymnastics and metabolic conditioning:

I'm a bit confused as to how to include each element; should I always do strength/olympic lifts such as deadlifts to failure and should it always be at very low reps? Should I always do push-ups to failure with bodyweight, and is there a time when just 10 push-ups repeated for ten sets, with rest periods covered by pull-ups be acceptable, even if in none of those sets of push-ups did I ever fail (which I guess would improve my stamina and CV endurance, but probably not be sufficient to maintain my maximum functional strength)?

I can't see how workouts such as "Diane" (Deadlift 225 lbs Handstand push-ups, both 21-15-9 reps, for time) work. Would a workout such as "Diane" also need to be closely preceeded and/or followed by a workout involving some sets of deadlift and maybe shoulder press at low reps and high weight, and one involving as many handstand push-ups as possible with bodyweight and a clean, snatch or high-pull? As all I can see "Diane" doing is working on stamina and CV/Respitory endurance, not strength, power, and most likely not speed. I'm not saying your approach is wrong, I'm saying I don't get how it works!
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Old 07-28-2008, 03:36 PM   #2
Jerry Maestas
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Re: BIG questions!

I understand you want to understand; but why re-create when this site is already here? Seems counter-productive. Just do the workouts and reap the benefits; Your body will thank you.
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Old 07-28-2008, 03:37 PM   #3
David Easton
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Re: BIG questions!

Why not just do the WOD?
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Old 07-28-2008, 03:44 PM   #4
George Mounce
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Re: BIG questions!

You didn't read it all...

Do a search for "Hybrid program", it may be what you are seeking.

If you don't get how Diane works, do it, you'll get it then. You are absolutely wrong in how you are thinking.
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Old 07-28-2008, 03:51 PM   #5
Brian Bailey
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Re: BIG questions!

Quote:
Originally Posted by David Easton View Post
Why not just do the WOD?
I could do, but I'd prefer to not have to rely on external sources, especially as my access to the 'net is sporadic.

Also, I am severly time-limited and can probably only get to the gym three days, maybe four, a week.
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Old 07-28-2008, 03:59 PM   #6
Brian Bailey
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Re: BIG questions!

Quote:
Originally Posted by George Mounce View Post
You didn't read it all...

Do a search for "Hybrid program", it may be what you are seeking.

If you don't get how Diane works, do it, you'll get it then. You are absolutely wrong in how you are thinking.
So how is my thinking wrong?
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Old 07-28-2008, 05:16 PM   #7
Gavin Harrison
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Re: BIG questions!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Bailey View Post
So how is my thinking wrong?
Because the point of crossfit is not to go till failure on body weight exercises or to max out every day, that'd be insane (not that crossfit is sane). It's more about RANDOM and INCLUSIVE fitness. You shouldn't be going to failure, anyway... most of the workouts are meant to rock your metabolic socks, not destroy you for a few days, as maxing out or going to failure would. Every modality is not hit every day, nor should they be.
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Old 07-28-2008, 05:35 PM   #8
Brian Bedell
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Re: BIG questions!

I would call this a classic example of "big brain little problem." CF is amazingly simple, just do what the wod is every day, after a month if you want to add/subtract/change then suit it to fit your needs. You are trying to reinvent a pretty good wheel.

As far as not having net access, start with the WODs from last week, print a weeks worth of Wod's out, and then come back next week for another week of wods. Simple.
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Old 07-28-2008, 05:37 PM   #9
Brett Dartt
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Re: BIG questions!

go into the faq and print all the girls and the hero workouts out
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