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Old 01-16-2009, 09:22 AM   #1
Dan Carlin
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Heavy and slow or light and fast?

Hi,

I've been CrossFitting for about 2 months now and have been continually wondering about scalings. I'm 30 years old, ~200lbs and have been working out regularly for less than a year. My previous program was a strictly strength program. I have a fair amount of natural strength and can lift the weights in combo workouts, but my power is lacking and I can't keep the intensity over time. I have been doing WOD's as rx'd or as close as my strength allows but my times are incredibly slow. 5 round WOD's would take an hour sometimes more or I would routinely double to triple times posted on the main site. My main goal right now is power increase and sustained strength over time. I was wondering which is a better method to get that power, normal scaling with lower intensity or scale down with higher intensity? Help would be greatly appreciated. Rock on, Dan
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Old 01-16-2009, 09:52 AM   #2
Joseph Shreckhise
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Re: Heavy and slow or light and fast?

Dan,
Ultimately what you want out of your WOD maximum power output. Power is nearly synanomous with intensity. If the intensity of your workout is suffering becasue the weights are too heavy to lift quickly then I would scale them down. P = W/T Its great to be able to lift heavy things (increased W) but if it takes you forever (increased T) you're not maximizing your power output.
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Old 01-16-2009, 10:20 AM   #3
Justin McGinley
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Re: Heavy and slow or light and fast?

Both heavy and slow, and light and fast have their merits. But if you are taking 2-3x as long as the average time posted on the mainpage, you clearly went too heavy. For now, err on the side of light, concentrate on good form first, and intensity second, and as time goes on you'll be doing the same workouts faster, with heavier weights.
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Old 01-16-2009, 11:46 AM   #4
Darrell E. White
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Re: Heavy and slow or light and fast?

Dan:

I had some success doing some of both. Before each WOD decide what your goal will be for that day. Strength/muscle endurance? Go heavy and maybe scale the reps so that you do the WOD in 40 minutes or less. Met-con, speed, burn it? Scale the weight and go for speed doing all of the reps.

A great way to feel what the exquisite pain of the fastest WOD's done by the fastest CF'ers is to do "Virtual Fran" , "Fran" with a PVC pipe for the thrusters and jumping PU. Not only do you NOT do negatives on the JPU, but you PUSH YOURSELF DOWN from the top of the JPU in order to go even faster. I did it in 1:41 and could not move for minutes. Alternatively do a "Sprint Fran" with kipping PU and just a 45# Oly bar. Exquisite work in the second metabolic pathway.

Welcome aboard. Fasten your seat belt.

--bingo
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Old 01-16-2009, 01:49 PM   #5
Dan Carlin
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Re: Heavy and slow or light and fast?



thanks for your comments! They are incredibly helpful. I think being more cerebral about what I can do efficiently and effectively in terms of reps/loads for a WOD will secondarily provide an intensity gain and competitive push from the mental side. It's hard to bring your A game when your primary concern is whether or not you can finish. Time to set the strength ego aside and work on the fitness ego.
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