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Old 09-08-2007, 01:18 AM   #1
Bill Afantos
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Crossfit Beginner - A Serious Question.

Hello everyone,

My question revolves through my own short back round, but I'm sure it does concern many.

At the age of 14-15 I began martial arts. Being Greek myself I set myself on a journey, to revive Pagration ( the ancient Hellenic martial art, many may know it as "Pankration" , but its really called PaGration, pronounced Pa-Gra-T-eon, with four syllables and means " The all ruler " ) and to show people the true culture of my country , which has been so misjudged by many.

As a start , I began Wing Chun King Fu , at a little school close to my house , while studying in books, anything that had to do with , fitness , martial arts , nutrition , and of course Pagration.

A had a ton of knowledge that I had to put to use. Move from being a thinker to being a doer. That was quite hard.

As a child due to poor nutrition , I grew up being quite over weight. Ofcourse I knew that it was no big deal , and all I had to do was, begin a work out from the knowledge I had from fitness , and build a Diet with the knowledge I had from nutrition.

All went well , at age 17 I lost 70 pounds in 3 months ( weighted circuit training really helped ) . All until I went to the doctor , who told me I had a health problem and would have to stop working out for the next couple of years. After that I fell into a depression , since after all I was doing so well , and had to stop like that. I went back to my old habits , and gained the wait back in 2 and and a half years. Until I went to a doctor to check on my problem , which at the end... I didn't even have. I was misdiagnosed.

So that been put behind , I wanted to go back again in losing the weight, and continuing with my goal.

After studying more on the ancient Greek systems of exercise , I saw that in ancient Greece , even though they had all sorts of equipment , from weights that resemble dumbells with kettlebar handles , to punching bags. I saw that they never used the isolation of muscles as to train. Even in stretching , they wouldn't stretch muscles one at a time , rather they created a sort of " Dance " that was like a full body stretch. I also fell upon a system of exercise named " Tetrades " which really resembles modern day crossfit. ( If anyone is interested I'll be glad to explain it in details )

After that research , lately I stumbled upon crossfit , that for me was sort of like a modern day evolution of the work out back then. ( without wanting to insult anyone or to say there is a connection , thats just how I personally see it ).

That said, this is my question
Being around 50-60 pounds over weight ( age of 21 ), first of all is it recommended I jump to a crossfit routine ( scaled down ofcourse )? Or should I actually first lose the weight using conventional methods , and then go for crossfit ?
If I should start with crossfit , do you have any suggestions on a crossfit routine I can start with ?

Any help is greatly appreciated.

Thank You in advance , and sorry for the big text.

Last edited by Bill Afantos; 09-08-2007 at 01:25 AM..
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Old 09-08-2007, 02:56 AM   #2
Eugene R. Allen
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Re: Crossfit Beginner - A Serious Question.

There isn't a CrossFit routine. In fact, you might think of CrossFit as anti-routine. There are three fundamental pillars to CrossFit and they are functional exercise, variety of exercise and intensity of exercise. CrossFit isn't a weight loss program, it's not for body sculpting or for spot reduction. It is a training program to create elite althletes and elite athleticism across a variety of energy and performance pathways. Read the FAQ's and much of what you are asking will be answered but for the record: do CrossFit and clean up your diet with the Zone. Don't do "conventional" anything. Do the WOD scaled to your needs and eat properly and you will reach your goals.
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Old 09-08-2007, 08:53 AM   #3
Craig Van De Walker
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Re: Crossfit Beginner - A Serious Question.

Bill,
Invest about 8-12 hours over the next few weeks reading FAQs, start here, what is fitness and the pages and pages of free material available of this web site.

Just get started on scaled workouts, think about adopting a zone or paleo diet and see how it works for you.

Think about what you read, but don't overthink it.

From elsewhere on the site, IMO what CF is all about:

What is CrossFit?
CrossFit is the principal strength and conditioning program for many police academies and tactical operations teams, military special operations units, champion martial artists, and hundreds of other elite and professional athletes worldwide.

Our program delivers a fitness that is, by design, broad, general, and inclusive. Our specialty is not specializing. Combat, survival, many sports, and life reward this kind of fitness and, on average, punish the specialist.

The CrossFit program is designed for universal scalability making it the perfect application for any committed individual regardless of experience. We’ve used our same routines for elderly individuals with heart disease and cage fighters one month out from televised bouts. We scale load and intensity; we don’t change programs.

The needs of Olympic athletes and our grandparents differ by degree not kind. Our terrorist hunters, skiers, mountain bike riders and housewives have found their best fitness from the same regimen.

Thousands of athletes worldwide have followed our workouts posted daily on this site and distinguished themselves in combat, the streets, the ring, stadiums, gyms and homes.

We also publish the CrossFit Journal designed to support the CrossFit community detailing the theory, techniques, and practice used by our coaches in our gym, in essence bringing your garage or gym into ours, making you a part of the CrossFit family.

We offer seminars, trainer certifications, and training and regularly provide consultation services to athletic teams, coaches, and police and military agencies throughout the free world.


Also

World-Class Fitness
in 100 Words:
Eat meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch and no sugar. Keep intake to levels that will support exercise but not body fat. Practice and train major lifts: Deadlift, clean, squat, presses, C&J, and snatch. Similarly, master the basics of gymnastics: pull-ups, dips, rope climb, push-ups, sit-ups, presses to handstand, pirouettes, flips, splits, and holds. Bike, run, swim, row, etc, hard and fast. Five or six days per week mix these elements in as many combinations and patterns as creativity will allow. Routine is the enemy. Keep workouts short and intense. Regularly learn and play new sports.
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Old 09-08-2007, 11:57 AM   #4
Bill Afantos
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Re: Crossfit Beginner - A Serious Question.

First of all thank you both for you response.

Yes I have read all the FAQs.

Yes I also know crossfit is not a weight loss program. I am trying to begin crossfit not to lose weight. But for my goal as a martial artist. Thing is right now , thats what I have to do first. Thats my top priority , lose weight.

And I was wondering , if I can do it via crossfit , or would it be dangerous/not healthy , or should I go for you just 1-2 hour cardio and isolated weight exercises till I lose the weight and then go for crossfit.

About the routine , yes I know what you mean , some times I might mix up words , my English isn't really that good, sorry bout that. What I meant was , if anyone had a specific "beginner's workout" that could help my case.
Right now im 235 pounds , with 85 muscle pounds and 65 fat pounds. Just so you can get an idea.

Thanks Again.
Bill

Last edited by Bill Afantos; 09-08-2007 at 12:03 PM..
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Old 09-08-2007, 12:40 PM   #5
George Mounce
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Re: Crossfit Beginner - A Serious Question.

To lose weight CrossFit is only about 25% of the answer though. Nutrition is the other 75%, you seem to keep shying away from that.

Fix your nutrition, and that will fix your weight problem. Then make yourself better with CrossFit.
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Old 09-08-2007, 12:53 PM   #6
David Wood
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Re: Crossfit Beginner - A Serious Question.

Hi Bill:

You will almost certainly lose weight if you start doing CrossFit seriously and regularly. The only reasons why you might not are (a) you really don't have any fat to lose (not your situation), (b) you are really foolish about your diet (that's up to you), or (c) you don't approach CrossFit with enough intensity (again, that's up to you).

Most people find that CrossFit tends to move them closer to their "ideal" weight (adding muscle and mass to some skinny people, losing fat for overweight people). Cleaning up your diet is critical, though.


There's been a lot of debate about the best way to "start" CrossFit, mostly around the question of whether some minimum strength requirement was needed (with the idea that some people needed to do a pure strength-oriented program for a few months).

You can find much of that discussion on these boards, in the same "Starting" section that this thread is in.

I (personally) don't agree with the idea of starting with anything other than CrossFit itself . . . if you want to to try it (and I think everyone should!) then just start. In particular, you could try the "scaled" workouts offered by by Brand X Martial Arts (a CrossFit affiliate in California). Every day, they post modified forms of the main CrossFit Workout of the Day (the WOD), with appropriate modifications for all levels of conditioning.

My best advice would be go there (you can find a link to the page on the right-hand side of the FAQ), and start experimenting to find out what you can and can't do. If the workouts are too easy, you can always come back to the main page WODs whenever you want.


The one thing I would NOT do is what you describe: the 1 - 2 hours of cardio and isolated weight training. Doing that is certainly better than doing nothing, and, in time, could help you lose weight, I guess. But it will do relatively little to prepare you for the kind of intensity that CrossFit (and real life) demands. The months you might spend doing that would be better spent working your way through the Brand X scaled workouts.

Last edited by David Wood; 09-08-2007 at 12:58 PM..
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Old 09-08-2007, 01:47 PM   #7
Bill Afantos
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Re: Crossfit Beginner - A Serious Question.

Yeah of course nutrition is a key role. I have that clear though.
I have set up ( In my opinion of course ) a good nutrition from my previous diets that I used to lose the 70 pounds that I mentioned earlier in the thread , and am going very well in that.

I am also very glad to see that you all agree with me starting immediately in crossfit , because basically , thats what I really wanted to do. I was just wondering , if it safe to begin with crossfit having 50-60 pounds overweight.

Thank you very much for your time.
Bill

Last edited by Bill Afantos; 09-08-2007 at 01:51 PM..
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Old 09-08-2007, 06:02 PM   #8
David Wood
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Re: Crossfit Beginner - A Serious Question.

Based on everything else you say you've been doing, you're already an athlete (albeit a large one). I think if you scale appropriately, you'll find CrossFit to be the best thing you can do.

If you were 60 pounds overweight and completely sendentary (a "couch potato" in American slang), yes, I'd have more concern. That doesn't seem be the case for you.

Go for it!
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Old 09-08-2007, 07:49 PM   #9
Zach Wright
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Re: Crossfit Beginner - A Serious Question.

I was in sort of the same situation when I started Crossfit. Diet is the most important thing. If that's in line the weight will come off (I'm saying that from experience) You obviously want to scale the workouts, but make sure you don't make them too easy. And I completely agree with the above opinion that the best way to train for Crossfit is to do it. Having a strength training background might help, but you WILL get stronger from doing Crossfit. Dive in and enjoy the ride bro.
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Old 09-09-2007, 12:24 AM   #10
Bill Afantos
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Re: Crossfit Beginner - A Serious Question.

Quote:
Originally Posted by David Wood View Post
Based on everything else you say you've been doing, you're already an athlete (albeit a large one).
Thank you , I very much appreciate that comment.
Most people when they see you , no matter what you might have done , if your even slightly over weight , they'll say " nah your no athlete you haven't done nothing. "

They don't know what I ( or anyone else ) might have been through. Building up to my current 85-100 pounds of muscle and losing 70 pounds of fat through conventional methods , working out twice a day while attending Martial Arts, was not an easy task.

And going through depression is alot worse.


Also thanks Zack , I will do so.
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