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Fitness Theory and Practice. CrossFit's rationale & foundations. Who is fit? What is fitness?

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Old 06-15-2010, 10:58 AM   #41
Tamara Cohen
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Re: Why am I considered underweight?

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Originally Posted by Matthew Gogel View Post
I've been contemplating the same issue from the other side of the fence. I stopped wrestling after college and mostly focused on lifting because I enjoyed it most. I put on about 20lbs, most of which is muscle. For my size, I'm pretty strong and I even do well on bodyweight workouts and most metcon workouts. However, I can't run nearly as fast as I used to and running has become a labor for me to do, box jumps are similar...I tire easily on box jumps and running despite pretty good performance on longer metcons. Crossfit has helped me some in my running times, but I'm nowhere close to the performance I'd like on anything involving running.

I'm pretty convinced that I need to lose some weight and probably even lose some muscle weight. It makes me really nervous to do, because everytime I start down the path...I seem to experience strength loss before I see improvement in my running times. Then I think...why give up the strength if I'm not gaining the running capacity I want?
I would add some CFE workouts before I'd consider weight loss to improve your run times. Or keep it simple and run some 4x400m or 8x200m intervals once a week. Unless you are a runner who also happens to CrossFit, don't sacrifice your strength.
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Old 06-15-2010, 11:14 AM   #42
Ryan Hoegner
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Re: Why am I considered underweight?

I wouldn't cut a bunch of weight to become a little faster on runs.
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Old 06-15-2010, 11:59 AM   #43
Tamara Cohen
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Re: Why am I considered underweight?

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I wouldn't cut a bunch of weight to become a little faster on runs.
Yeah, Matthew, just to put this in perspective, here's a little example.

I'm pretty fast. My last 400m was 71 seconds, and I'm aiming for 65 seconds by the end of the summer. I'm definitely NOT the strongest person, and other than going overhead, my high rep lifts are a huge weakness. At Sectionals, the first WOD was a sandbag sprint and squat WOD. 40 lb sandbag. Shuttle runs with the sandbag of 400m, 300m and 200m. Sandbag squats of 20, 30, and 40. I smoked the runs. I mean, I lapped people multiple times. But, I got crushed by the squats. If I have a 71 second 400m run and someone else has a 90 second 400m run but can squat twice as fast as I can...I'm .

My solution: Get stronger. If I add 50 lbs to my backsquat, I can squat 40 lbs that much faster. Speed in CrossFit isn't only about running. Absolute strength plays a role. Muscular endurance plays a huge role.

Last edited by Tamara Cohen : 06-15-2010 at 12:09 PM.
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Old 06-15-2010, 01:53 PM   #44
Matthew Gogel
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Re: Why am I considered underweight?

Thanks for the insights. My problem is really more than just my weight and running. I think the core of the issue is that my goals really have changed, but I have a fear of losing the things I'm good at now.

I started crossfit because I want to be more well-rounded...to have the type of fitness where I could win an event like the crossfit games. However, I came to crossfit with strengths already (primarily bench press and pull ups). My training reflects a fear of my strengths diminishing. When the WOD consists of certain elements (push ups, bench press, pull ups, du's, cleans), my performance is very strong. When the WOD consists of other elements (thrusters, overhead squats, running)...I'm not elite and at times not even average.

I think there's two things really inhibiting my progress...

1. If anything throws me off the programming (ex. a business trip), I'll find a way to make sure I don't neglect my strengths. So I'll do push ups and pull ups somewhere and I'll neglect my weaknesses...no way will I choose to work on squats or running.

2. When I feel like my body needs extra work beyond the WOD, I'll add in work to maintain my strengths (I still lift heavy bench and do weighted pull ups at least once per week)...I never use this time to improve my form on overhead squats or to run.

I know in my head that I can't reach my goals this way, but when we go a week without heavy benching (I know we almost never do heavy bench) I have a nagging urge to make sure to get it done so that I don't lose it. Did anyone else have a mental struggle softening your concern for fitness you did previously? Surely, there have to be runners who religiously tracked their times, who just must get a run in when they fear that crossfit has been too many strength workouts in a row. The thing is that you're not going to be a superstar in the new exercises right away...so its hard to risk elite status in something in order to be average in something else. I don't know how quickly my bench or pull ups would drop if I reduced the frequency of working those lifts (I've always been to scared to reduce the frequency). If I felt that I'd maintain my current level with less frequency, I'd feel much better about working my weaknesses.
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