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Old 05-15-2011, 08:39 AM   #1
David Klotz
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Crossfit and full time school/work?

I guess you can say I'm at a bit of a crossroads with my routine. I will apologize ahead of time for this ramble.

Has anyone here successfully done Crossfit, full time school and full time work at the same time? I know I need to be physically active( I lost alot of weight with Crossfit--so I know it works) but am struggling with finding balance.

My diet was dialed in, I was doing a 5x a week workout routine(2 on, 1 off, 3 on, 1 off) then scaled back to three days a week which still proved to be too much. Routines consisted of variation of Gant Grimes hybrid program and traditional WODs. The probllem is that this was so taxing on me that my schoolwork and work began to suffer. Typically I'd begin to see a crash about 1 to 2 hours after my workouts where I'd get extremely tired, bumping into walls etc. I'd eat some fruit but the tired feeling persisted.

As semester progressed I went back down to only 1 day a week--my diet began to suffer and I gained about 15 pounds back (which I can work off within a few months no problem) . My conditioning is very poor now. It's the summer so I have a chance to build up again but my concern going forward is for the fall semester.

Are there sites for Crossfit college students? If I'm going to have to make a choice my school has to come first but I don't want to lose all the conditioning and strength that came from my program. Is there a middle ground? I'm really struggling with this, it's killing me. Any ideas /help would be appreciated. I was heistant to post here as I've seen other posters get ripped to shreds but I'm out of ideas.

Thanks,
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Old 05-15-2011, 08:51 AM   #2
Mike Hopper
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Re: Crossfit and full time school/work?

If you are exhausted an hour after a workout you may be overtraining. It's important to find the balance between your everyday life and working out. On the other hand, maybe consider working out at night so you can then go to bed?
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Old 05-15-2011, 08:52 AM   #3
Tamara Cohen
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Re: Crossfit and full time school/work?

What's your work schedule, what's your school schedule, and what time of day do you train?

If you're not getting enough sleep or if you're not eating enough, you are going to fail to recover no matter what your schedule is.
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Old 05-15-2011, 08:52 AM   #4
Katherine Derbyshire
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Re: Crossfit and full time school/work?

Crossfit is probably easier to fit in than many other approaches because the workouts are relatively short.

If you're crashing two hours after your workout, you're probably not eating enough, particularly PWO. You might also want to play with macro ratios -- your symptoms describe me when I haven't had enough carbs. What were/are you eating? Getting enough sleep?

Part of the middle ground may involve scaling your workouts and/or ratcheting back your intensity. An hour of moderate exercise may not make you a firebreather, but it's still better than sitting on your couch.

Good luck!

Katherine
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Old 05-15-2011, 09:03 AM   #5
Michael Stiles
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Re: Crossfit and full time school/work?

What exactly is your weekly schedule? Do I understand that you are doing school, work (employment) and CrossFit?
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Old 05-15-2011, 09:30 AM   #6
David Klotz
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Re: Crossfit and full time school/work?

Thanks everyone. I have a somewhat(at least how I feel) challenging schedule to maintain. I work at 8 hours a day (730 am to 430 pm) , and go to school full time. I'm getting around 5-7 hours a night typically(literally all I can get, I'll explain later) .

Wake up at 5 am every morning, gives me enough time to have coffee, oatmeal in morning and check my news/email. I am NOT a morning person. I need complete quiet/low lights/low noise in the morning in order to wake up. I could do crossfit this time in the morning but I'd have to go to the gym even earlier--house is quiet everyone is sleeping can't do workouts at home with proper equipment. Work is very cerebral, high stress office job requires alot of mental acuity and there is WAY too much. Relief is allegedly coming per management but I don't see it happening. Resumes are out and about, looking to find other employment(just got AA degree which might help some) Difficult to get in water as I have to get up all the time or eat for that matter. Very tired at end of day.

School starts at 5:30 pm and runs until 10 pm. Come home shower, go to bed around 11 pm, rinse/repeat x 5 days a week.

Diet tries to stay as close to 20 blocks as possible though to be honest is usually closer to 16 -18 blocks. I'm male, age 34, 215 pounds. Goal is overall conditioning/strength. Usual workouts consist of traditional WOD for 10 to 15 min, plus compound lift(squats, deadlifts, etc)

Breakfast: Protein powder/Oatmeal, coffee
Mid Morning(if there is time): 4 block fruit, deli meat, nuts
Lunch: Protein powder/water. 4 block fruit/veggies, nuts
Supper: Chicken breast, veggies , fruit, nuts

Suppose to have another meal but realistically I can't be eating at 1030 at night. It's bad for digestion/won't be able to sleep.

Well that's the schedule, pretty much all my weekend time (only Sunday) is devouted to homework.

Last edited by David Klotz : 05-15-2011 at 09:37 AM.
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Old 05-15-2011, 09:46 AM   #7
Katherine Derbyshire
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Re: Crossfit and full time school/work?

Quote:
Originally Posted by David Klotz View Post
Suppose to have another mean but realistically I can't be eating at 1030 at night. It's bad for digestion/won't be able to sleep.
Can you snack during your classes? If not, you might want to increase the size of the meals you do eat. Shaving 4 blocks off a diet that's already calorie-restricted certainly won't help your energy levels.

Yes, I know prep time is a huge problem, but your diet is seriously lacking. You might read some of the posts in the nutrition forum about managing real food when time-constrained. Protein powder is a useful supplement, but it shouldn't be the core of your diet.

Yes, that's a very challenging schedule. In your place, my priority would be to get some kind of exercise on a regular basis, even if just walking for 30 minutes at lunch. That will have a huge impact on your stress levels, which will make everything else easier. Number two priority would be to find some sort of recreational exercise on the weekend, keeping in mind that doing intense exercise only once a week is a good route to injury -- don't try to make up for the whole rest of the week in one day!

Crossfit? Meh. Whether it fits into your schedule would largely depend on stuff like whether you have a gym at work: is it feasible to spend a half hour or so lifting or doing a quick metcon and still have time left for lunch? But I think doing *something,* *anything* is more important than fitting in something that can be specifically labeled "Crossfit."

Katherine
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Old 05-16-2011, 08:40 PM   #8
Scott Walters
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Re: Crossfit and full time school/work?

What katherine said! We are genetically dialed for short intense bouts of stress, not long overloading periods. If we go through that, and don't we all in our society, we need to do something to counteract it. Our default for stress reduction is movement.

Personally, I love crossfit, and I think it is ideal for our evolution. However, I do not do your hours or have your stress, so it has never affected me like you with "crashes". Any movement is better than none, crossfit or no. Remember that stress hormones (like cortisol) will run havoc with your health and mental acuity if left to their own devices. Do sleep, eat well and move for the sake of your health, so you can work better, study better and just be better.
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Old 05-16-2011, 09:46 PM   #9
Justin J. Smith
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Re: Crossfit and full time school/work?

I myself have been going to school 15 units. which is about 24hrs actually in class not including homework and working 32hrs a week. A big thing I do is cook alot of food on sundays and also I dont know what kind of college you are going to but I buy alot of cashews and almonds at school along with continuously drinking tons of water.
You might want to think about foods you can bring to school that you dont need to microwave. Also, 2 ideas. I generally do both depending on what free stuff I get at work but switching from Whey protein to a weight gainer. Not saying to use the full servings of what it recommends but generally 1 scoop could be at least 250 cals. instead of whey protein which is generally 110. Also, Bananas are easy to carry and good for energy. There are many ways to get enough calories in your day, you just gotta find them.
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Old 05-17-2011, 09:51 AM   #10
Jared Ashley
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Re: Crossfit and full time school/work?

Quote:
Originally Posted by David Klotz View Post
I guess you can say I'm at a bit of a crossroads with my routine. I will apologize ahead of time for this ramble.

Has anyone here successfully done Crossfit, full time school and full time work at the same time? I know I need to be physically active( I lost alot of weight with Crossfit--so I know it works) but am struggling with finding balance.
Yes.

I was working full time at a hospital as a patient care tech and going to nursing school full time for 16 months. For most of that I had either class, work, or clinicals 7 days a week, plus homework. I figure it averaged about 70-75 hours a week most weeks.

The key is to remember that crossfit (or any other workout system for that matter) is NOT all-or-nothing. You don't have to sleep 8 hours every night, eat strict paleo, and do the WOD as prescribed on a 3-on-1-off schedule to get huge benefits.

What happened with me is I went back and forth... sometimes I'd be really good about working out for a few weeks, sometimes it'd be spotty, only getting in 1-2 workouts in a week, and sometimes I'd go 2-3 weeks at a time without touching a barbell or doing a pushup. sometimes I'd eat clean, sometimes I didn't. Sometimes I'd get 8 hours of sleep, sometimes it'd be 4.

I'll be honest, I didn't make a lot of progress in that time. BUT... I didn't regress either! I went into that period with well above-average strength and fitness and came out about the same, even with my spotty record. And, about a week before the end of the program I ran my first half-marathon using that spotty training and a half-dozen trail runs, none over 9 miles. Time was under 2 hours and in the top 25% of participants.

So, my advice is to do what you can. 1 WOD a week is better than zero, and doing 1/2 volume on a wod, or reduced intensity on a WOD because you're tired or busy is better than doing nothing. Also try to save time on food-prep by making friends with your crockpot... you can make a weeks worth of meals in a day while you're writing a paper.

final side note: if you're crashing to the point of bumping into walls 1-2 hours post-workout, your diet is NOT dialed in. You're either not eating enough or not eating the right things.
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