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Old 06-07-2006, 10:37 AM   #1
sarah cruz
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Hi All!

I'm new to Cross Fit. This is Day 1 and I'm looking through all the resources, the WOD and the scaled down WOD's.

I have a question - can anyone suggest exercises to increase my arm strength? I have weakling arms and can not even HANG for more than a few seconds right now, much less do knee to elbows and other exercises on the bar.

Thanks guys! I'm excited to get healthy and fit! I'm also excited about how this will help me with surfing...I'd love to have more strength and stamina to go for longer sets. Right now I tend to stay away from bigger wave sets because my arms aren't strong enough to bail me out in a jam.

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Old 06-07-2006, 11:34 AM   #2
Tom Brose
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Gravitron assisted pullups, band pullups, jumping pullups, modified pushups, basically, keep working at whatever you can do. you will get stronger, just find versions you can do and keep at it.

Welcome to CrossFit.
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Old 06-07-2006, 12:00 PM   #3
Peter Queen
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Welcome Sarah. For arm strength there is a wide range of exercises you can do. Tom mentioned some good ones. You can also do dead hangs to get your arms use to the sensation of exerting stress on them from your own body weight. You can also do negatives (where you hang from a bar and slowly let yourself down) and DB thrusters. Make sure you do a search on CF for upper body training /pull-ups or go to the FAQ section of the main page for ideas as well. Don’t worry about wave sets, just do the WODs, especially the ones that incorporate upper body routines and scale them back to suit you until you build up your strength.
Good luck.
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Old 06-07-2006, 08:17 PM   #4
Stephen Solano
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Preacher curls, hammer curls, reverse curls forget all that stuff. Keep at the WOD and you'll develop arm strength. Check out Dan John's website over in the FAQ page, Essential References. Have fun with CrossFit and start slow.

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Old 06-08-2006, 06:03 AM   #5
Frank DiMeo
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Sarah, welcome to CrossFit!
A simple, but good exercise is the farmer's walk.
Just pick up a pair of dumbbells, kettlebells, etc. and just walk with them as long as your grip will tolerate.
Start light, then build up.
Make sure you set the weights down before you hit muscle failure and drop them.
Your feet will thank you.
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Old 06-08-2006, 08:07 AM   #6
Lisa Ray
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Welcome to CrossFit Sarah! We're glad to see yet another woman join us! I think the best advice you could receive has been mentioned-do the WOD. You will get strong in your arms. There are multiple ways to scale the WOD so you can do it, and for the most consistent suggestions, I would recommend you go to the BrandX Martial Arts website. They post the WOD every day and then give several other versions, depending on ability. Click on the CrossFit Forum link on the right side of the page and then find the date of the workout you're looking for.

If there are still exercises you feel you cannot do or don't have equipment for, you can find some substitution suggestions on the FAQ link on this website. (number 3. in the list.)

If you don't find a sub, just hop on here and ask!

I saw you posted elsewhere looking for CrossFit gyms in your area. All the ones mentioned, of course, and then there will also be a CrossFit seminar for women on June 17th down in San Diego at the CrossFit San Diego gym. I would strongly recommend you attend if you can. Susan, the gal who is putting it on, is a surfer as well. There will be lots of other women with various backgrounds and abilities there sharing their stories, learning how to get started, how to progress, you'll meet women who've been doing it for awhile now and who love it!

Just remember, scalability and good form will be your main focus for awhile. Then build up to the time and intensity. Most of all-HAVE FUN! One day you'll wake up and realize, oh my gosh, I can't believe how much stronger I am! Because, while you were having fun, the side benefit was that you were becoming stronger and didn't even realize it.

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Old 06-08-2006, 09:40 PM   #7
Rob McBee
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Welcome Sarah. Basically ditto to everyone's advice so far. Don't neglect joints/tendons in the quest for stronger muscles though. Scale the workouts and build up gradually but persistently. Injuries will just make it all take even longer. Good luck...
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Old 06-09-2006, 10:02 AM   #8
Skip Chase
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Welcome Sarah!!!
I agree with the comments, "do the WOD" for your arms. We all have weakness somewhere, and the CrossFit WOD will strengthen us physically and mentally.
Ramp-up slowly, and seek the info on the FAQ and this message board often.
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Old 06-09-2006, 01:56 PM   #9
Tom Brose
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I was so upset when I read "preacher curls..", until I got to the end.
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Old 06-09-2006, 04:18 PM   #10
Mike Griffith
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How about doing some weight/strength work specifically for your arms and shoulders?

Specificity of training is the path to performance. If your arms are weak, do some extra work just for your arms.

Curls for biceps, every guy on this board has done them.

Over head tricep extension, most guys on the board have done these too.

If one has a weak spot, train it and bring it up.
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