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Old 02-22-2011, 09:15 PM   #11
Eric Montgomery
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Re: Question on Scaling for a Newbie

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Originally Posted by CJ Kim View Post
I don't kid when it comes to giving newbies advice. The OP had a common question about scaling and there was an on point video with Tony and Coach talking about how they regulate training at the threshold to maximize gains/minimize risk.
Ok, I get it now--so what you're saying is that it's more birthday party than physics class?

If any pyramid schemers or cult leaders ever try to recruit you, I highly recommend you run away quickly. You seem a little too susceptible to believing everything you hear as long as it's said in an excessively flowery and verbose way.
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Old 02-22-2011, 09:29 PM   #12
CJ Kim
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Re: Question on Scaling for a Newbie

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Originally Posted by Vickie Ellickson View Post
My understanding is that form is priority #1, so it seems like I'm better off by taking that short break and doing the rep correctly instead of doing it half-baked.
Form is important, but it's certainly not #1 in Crossfit. Castro wrote an excellent article in the journal (http://journal.crossfit.com/2010/06/...strategies.tpl) (safe) where he explained why perfect form is not actually desirable in metcons.

As he said: "Much attention has been paid to the technique of the snatch, and good technique is essential to maximizing the loads moved in any given set... The same approach, though, is not necessarily true when dealing with light loads. These lifts can be successful even with inefficient technique, including keeping the hips high, pulling with the arms, not coming to full extension on the second pull and even swinging the barbell out."

Again, you will need a journal subscription to read the whole thing (highly recommended), but the gist of it is this -- When doing heavy singles/doubles/etc. the focus should be on form, but when doing light weight for high reps, the focus should be on speed.

It's the so-called Crossfit slop. If form doesn't fall off at some point in a WOD, then you aren't working with enogh intensity. Coach always gave 20% as a guideline.
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Old 02-22-2011, 09:43 PM   #13
CJ Kim
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Re: Question on Scaling for a Newbie

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Originally Posted by Eric Montgomery View Post
Ok, I get it now--so what you're saying is that it's more birthday party than physics class?
Are you talking about this video?
http://media.crossfit.com/cf-video/C...ArtTrainingPRE
Please explain why you think the basic idea expressed is wrong?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric Montgomery View Post
If any pyramid schemers or cult leaders ever try to recruit you, I highly recommend you run away quickly. You seem a little too susceptible to believing everything you hear as long as it's said in an excessively flowery and verbose way.
I think Crossfit is a good program and Coach is a good, well, coach. Apparently you don't. No reason to get into all the Cultfit BS.
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Old 02-22-2011, 10:51 PM   #14
Eric Montgomery
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Re: Question on Scaling for a Newbie

There's a difference between thinking something is a good program and blindly repeating everything that its founders say. Critical thinking occasionally has its benefits.

And I wasn't bringing up the Cultfit stuff--I was just pointing out that your enthusiasm in parroting the opinions of others could probably stand to be checked a bit.
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Old 02-23-2011, 11:08 AM   #15
Milton Brisson
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Re: Question on Scaling for a Newbie

I have to agree with Eric on this. Most of us have tried the kool-aid to a certain extent. I love this crossfit stuff and am a beleiver in it - but you have to question some of these things....

"Form is important, but it's certainly not #1 in Crossfit". If you try to get a new member to rush through things like C&J, or even push-press without heeding proper form, they could knock some teeth out. And thats really the least of worries - serious injury can result if a lift is performed wrong.

I have worked out at a couple of local boxes, and the mantra on the progression is always "do it right-do it well-do it fast".

To the OP, there is a great resource in BrandX. They have their own forums there too, with some great info on this stuff.

In my personal experience I have found that scaling reps more than weight has worked better for me. If you have a WoD that calls for 15 thrusters at 135#, I think you would be better served doing 7 reps at the Rx'd weight (if you can - or if not, as close to this as possible) than doing Rx'd reps at 65#. Again, thats just me, and I am by no means an expert on this.

Good luck!
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Old 02-23-2011, 11:41 AM   #16
Vickie Ellickson
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Re: Question on Scaling for a Newbie

My priorities are this:

1. Don't get injured
2. Get fit

I know injuries are always a possibility when doing any type of strenuous activity. However, I need to mitigate those as best as I can. Even with light weights or body weight exercises, it doesn't make sense to me to not strive for proper form each time. Granted, my burpee form leaves a bit to be desired toward the end of the workout , but in my mind, it doesn't count as a rep if it's not right.

I assume that if I am pushing myself to the anaerobic threshold (using proper form) that I'm making some progress. FWIW, I don't belong to a box.
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Old 02-23-2011, 01:28 PM   #17
Jamie Gowens
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Re: Question on Scaling for a Newbie

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Originally Posted by Eric Montgomery View Post
There's a difference between thinking something is a good program and blindly repeating everything that its founders say. Critical thinking occasionally has its benefits.

And I wasn't bringing up the Cultfit stuff--I was just pointing out that your enthusiasm in parroting the opinions of others could probably stand to be checked a bit.
For real.
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Old 02-23-2011, 01:30 PM   #18
Jamie Gowens
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Re: Question on Scaling for a Newbie

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Originally Posted by Vickie Ellickson View Post
My priorities are this:

1. Don't get injured
2. Get fit

I know injuries are always a possibility when doing any type of strenuous activity. However, I need to mitigate those as best as I can. Even with light weights or body weight exercises, it doesn't make sense to me to not strive for proper form each time. Granted, my burpee form leaves a bit to be desired toward the end of the workout , but in my mind, it doesn't count as a rep if it's not right.

I assume that if I am pushing myself to the anaerobic threshold (using proper form) that I'm making some progress. FWIW, I don't belong to a box.
If there's ANY way you can hook up with an affiliate and get some coaching on the fundamental movements, that will go a long way to protecting you from injury.

If you're self coaching, video is a great tool to help you achieve solid form in your movements.

That said, BrandX is the best way to go, IMO, for scaling.
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Old 02-23-2011, 02:33 PM   #19
Vickie Ellickson
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Re: Question on Scaling for a Newbie

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Originally Posted by Jamie Gowens View Post
If there's ANY way you can hook up with an affiliate and get some coaching on the fundamental movements, that will go a long way to protecting you from injury.

If you're self coaching, video is a great tool to help you achieve solid form in your movements.

That said, BrandX is the best way to go, IMO, for scaling.
Funny you should mention that...I inquired about a fundamentals program at my local affiliate and they just responded and seem very willing to work with my schedule. Looking forward to finding time to visit the temple (so to speak).
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Old 02-23-2011, 04:24 PM   #20
Craig Massey
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Re: Question on Scaling for a Newbie

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I agree with Rob on this. The BrandX stuff is good, but '"constantly varied, if not random" is the more Crossfit approach.
So do we over at Brand X.

You'll notice that Jeff has scaled Fran differently the last few times it's been posted. He's been alternating recommending scaling and sprinting with going as close to Rx'd as possible and slogging through.
Mostly though Jeff scales to the intent of the workout and for most metcons that is no breaks and maximum power output.
We find that without guidance beginners more often go too heavy than too light and the consequent reduction in power output means they lose out on the gains they could be making.

It is definitely necessary to push your limits and go heavy on occasion, but making a steady diet of that is not the way to progress. If nothing else a fast metcon is as much as about enduring discomfort as it is about physical capacity and that needs to be trained too. It's why strength athletes new to CF hit the wall in metcons when they can easily handle the weight, while triathletes lean into the pain even if they can't move the weight as easily.

Brand X is quite deliberately a "Beginners Forum" at present and as such we have to provide information pitched at the lowest common denominator, simplifying CF theory so that beginners set out on their CF journey equipped with the information they most need. If people follow that they'll go a long way safely but we freely admit that there's more to it than the rules of thumb we present initially. The extra information is there if people want it and we often answer questions from people looking to branch out on their own.

I made a long post recently when someone asked about Tony's statement that he cringes when people mention target times for workouts as it appeared to contradict what we advocate, but the thrust of it was what I just said;
Most beginners (especially the guys) go too heavy and need to be taught that metcons are about maximising power output.
To counter that tendency, target times are a useful tool for beginners to use as a guide when choosing a scaling.
Once they get that they can test their limits with heavier weights, but most of the time, sprint.
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