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Old 01-08-2004, 12:33 PM   #1
Andy Hampton
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Great site, my question is is this the best place to start for a very, very out of shape person? While the exercises if done correctly will tax several energy systems, it seems that a very, very out of shape person can only maintain 50 seconds of any of this. Is an endurance base needed first?
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Old 01-08-2004, 01:33 PM   #2
Ryan Atkins
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Hi Andy,

Welcome to Crossfit.

IMO, a modified WOD will help build the endurance base you mention. Obviously a person like the one you describe may not immediately be able to do pull-ups, handstand push-ups and Olympic lifts with the weights/reps specified. However, by working up to those goals by using assisted versions of those exercises combined with the intervalled pattern of many of the WODs, I believe a person will not only build a significant endurance base, but will be improving muscle coordination/control, explosiveness, flexibility, strength and a host of other positive characterisitics along the way. These traits may be neglected if someone focuses on an endurance-based only program to begin with. For general physical preparedness, I'd be shocked to hear that it's not beneficial to develop the physical skills conjointly as opposed to having a seperate program for each skill.

Another option would be to check out the May 2003 issue of the Crossfit Journal. It gives a structured workout involving 3 relatively non-technical lifts (squat, deadlift, push-press) and uses running for the cardio. It requires only a bar, plates and some running space. Following this program for a month or two will give someone a good enough strength conditioning base to explore some of the more advanced exercises/WODs.

Hope this helps,

Ryan
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Old 01-08-2004, 01:36 PM   #3
Justin Arnest
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Andy,
Do the best that you can. Your muscles WILL get sore. You WILL sweat...alot. It will be HARD. You CAN do it.
Use light weights for exercises with weights until your joints and balance can accomodate more. Body weight exercises will be great for you and you may possibly need to find some substitutes as your fitness level increases.
So what if it takes you an hour to do what takes others ten minutes. I just started a couple of weeks ago and I am not at a "fit" level, it takes me a lot longer to do the WOD's then other people and I use less weight, but you know what, I am motivated and I do my best.
Don't be afraid to push yourself, just be smart.
Now get started.
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Old 01-09-2004, 10:02 PM   #4
Andy Hampton
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So what does this WOD mean exactly . .
21-15-and 9 reps of:
Clean 135 pounds
Ring Dips

That is it? What about rest intervals and what if 135 is too much? How many ring dips? In between sets of cleans? Sorry.
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Old 01-10-2004, 06:16 AM   #5
Chris Doughty
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Andy,
Any WOD that mentions "for time" or "post time to comments" means you do it as fast as possible. In this case it's: clean 21 reps, dip 21 reps, clean 15 reps, dip 15 reps, clean 9 reps, dip 9 reps, (puke?). If you haven't done the squat cleans before then it's probably best to start with a broom stick or light bar until you get the motion down. As for the dips, if there's a Gravitron where you work out, that will allow you to do weight-assisted dips until you're ready for the real thing.

Chris
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Old 01-10-2004, 12:50 PM   #6
Robert Wolf
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Andy-

I have heard coach mention that an initial endurance base can be hyelpfull in getting a person going on CrossFit. That said it is interesting that this initial endurance/strength base is best built on interval training...much like CrossFit.

The most important thing is to get moving, then modify your nutrition (the Zone is a good place to start). Hopefully you have a sport/activity you want to do which will help you gauge how much CrossFit is doing for you. These outside activities can be better long term motivators that simply the desire to train.

Keep us posted!
Robb
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Old 01-12-2004, 06:58 AM   #7
Juan E Enjamio
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Andy:

I am also very out of shape, very overweight (and getting close to being 50 years old). A few months ago I ran into the Crossfit site, and started to do the workouts-of-the-day. I found that no matter how much I tried to lower the intensity and adapt the workout to my situation, it was rare that I could do complete the workout it or do it for more than 5-10 minutes. Soon after I started, I aggravated a shoulder rotator-cuff problem that I already had by doing pull-ups on a pull-up assisted machine (set at a lot of assist!). This cut out many of the lifts and exercises in the Crossfit repertoire.

I have since taken the approach of building an endurance base first, while I recover from my shoulder problem. Once I think I have accomplished this, then I will start to integrate the WODs. (I plan to start by working on technique for the lifts with the broomstick approach).

As others have said, the important thing is to get started on something, and be aware of your limitations without using them as excuses.

Meanwhile, to compensate for my disappointment from not doing the WODs for now, I have started my 11-year-old son on them.
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Old 01-14-2004, 01:41 PM   #8
Bob Long
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I'm 47, overweight, and a recovering couch-potatoe. Here's what I started doing:

Morning: AS SOON AS YOU HIT THE FLOOR

Drop and do the maximum number of pushups you can.

DO THIS BEFORE ANYTHING ELSE . . . and you will already have a mini-workout in. Then periodically during the day, drop and do it again. And again. And again. Usually I get close to 200 pushups a day just doing this.

This builds up the needed endurance base to ATTEMPT the WOD's. I still can't do most of them but I do pieces of them and that's better than nothing.

ANOTHER RULE:

Not a day goes by that I don't do something. Move your body at least once a day, even if it's just a short walk of the pushups mentioned above. Something, anything is better than nothing. And nothing is what I used to do (and be). I'm not going back.
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Old 01-16-2004, 10:25 AM   #9
Andy Hampton
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Yes, I think some people think that they have to have everything in place to bother to sweat. However, for reasons such a time, money, etc. simple answers such a syours work.
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