Successful Goal Setting: CrossFit and Beyond

Jaime FreemaninstructionLeave a Comment

The summer is drawing to a close (sorry, somebody had to say it) and as the schedules return to normal after all that travel and partying in the sunshine and you all return to your normal gym routines I thought it might be a good time to talk about goal setting.  We see each other in the gym all the time, some of us upwards of 5 times a week, yet how many of us know EXACTLY why we are there and what we are working towards?  There is this ambiguous idea out there that we are all aiming to be “fit” or that we are all gunning for that awesome CrossFit term of “general physical preparedness”.  That is great, and personally I love to see you in the gym suffering next to me, but I hope this article sets you on a path to picking some specific areas of your life (CrossFit related or not) and set some goals for yourself.  So how do we go about doing that?  Here are some tips first about how to pick your goals and then a few on how to set about achieving them. Step 1 to successful goal setting is making … Read More

How to be better at CrossFit – right mindset and mental toughness

Dora Stenclovacrossfit tips, health, instructionLeave a Comment

In CrossFit we mostly measure athletic performance by how much one can lift or how fast one can do a workout. But there is not only hard training that can make you better at weightlifting or CrossFit. Your mind is a very powerful tool as well. In this article I’m going to cover how to get the best of yourselves by using your mind. The importance of having the right mindset Having the right mindset can help you at many aspects of life and it goes way beyond your performance at the gym. Every success starts with having the right mindset. I personally believe that anybody can have the right mindset. Often times I see people standing in front of a barbell and telling me that they can’t do it. And my reply is always the same – “if you tell yourself that you can’t get it, then you simply won’t get it”. It might seem harsh, but it’s, in most cases, true. If you want to finish a lift successfully, you must believe you can do it. Another thing that can help you is to try to visualize in your head how you perform the lift. Last action that is essential is to … Read More

Movement Mastery

Zuzka Zavodnahealth, instructionLeave a Comment

In CrossFit, we specialize in not specializing. That’s something every member of the gym learns at their first introductory class. We strive to balance the 10 general physical skills: cardiovascular / respiratory endurance, stamina, strength, flexibility, power, speed, coordination, agility, balance and accuracy. Coach Glassman, the founder of the CrossFit methodology, said in his article “What is fitness?”, that we should “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.” (This article is considered as the foundation of CrossFit, if you haven’t read it, you definitely should.) With CrossFit, we have a very powerful tool in our hands, with a lot of movements ranging from the most basic to extremely difficult. And just like with any other activity, we want to get to those fancy movements as fast as we can. Who likes doing air … Read More

What is intensity and how you might be doing it wrong

Joey ScafidiinstructionLeave a Comment

intensity gauge

I saw a post from Jon Gilson the other day that made me want to write about this and also because this same subject came up at one of our coaches’ meetings recently. Jon Gilson’s been around the CrossFit scene from the very beginning. He runs a great business seminar and always puts out lots of great content geared towards CrossFitters. Here it is.. “A quick note on CrossFit advancement: The prescription is Mechanics, Consistency, Intensity. This should not be confused with Mechanics, Consistency, Load. They are not equivalent. Put another way, load is an input into Intensity, but not a determinant, and too much load will blunt intensity needlessly, limiting adaptation. At its most basic, this means you should take longer to add load than you believe necessary. Bias toward speed and mechanics. This will keep intensity high, thereby fulfilling the prescription, and ensuring proper progression.” This is something that we’ve told every single one of you from day one at your introductory lesson. “Technique first, then consistency and only after you have those two things then, intensity.” Technique – Moving correctly and safely. Easy Consistency – Moving correctly and safely all of the time, even when you’re tired. … Read More

Bodyweight exercises and progressions

Tomas HorakinstructionLeave a Comment

Bodyweight exercises and progression Pull-ups, push-ups, dips, ring dips, hand stand push-ups, all these exercises sound very familiar to anyone who has ever done CrossFit, or any physical activity for that matter. Not only these movements sound familiar, they are also one of the biggest weaknesses and a kryptonite for CrossFitters, who already know how to move decent weights over their heads, or they can squat 100%+ their bodyweight and deadlift twice of it. In CrossFit, one cannot be successful or proficient without mastering the basics, because when they show up in a WOD, they will always remind us, how important they are. This article is going to take a deeper look at the basic bodyweight movements, which could be divided into two major groups: pulling and pushing movements, and this article is also going to provide few tips how to get better at those exercises. Pushing movements: Pushing exercises are any exercises that push weight away from our body, or our body from the ground, rings, or bars. These exercises usually work the pectoral muscles (chest muscles, triceps, and shoulders). Pulling exercises: Pulling exercises are movements in which you are pulling the weight towards your body or your body … Read More

Aerobic capacity, what is it and why it matters to you

Ryan ODonnellinstructionLeave a Comment

On Ben Bergeron’s blog he explains his programming philosophy, and introduces the concept of a “three-headed monster.” What is a “three-headed monster?” It’s someone that excels in all three of the basic focuses in Crossfit (strength, skills, conditioning). This is the guy or gal who can squat out of the gym, hammer out 15 unbroken muscle ups and then handstand walk home. He or she can also smoke everyone on a mile run or a 2k row. This last aspect is what we’re going to look at today. So what in the world are we talking about here? OK boys and girls, without getting too scientific there are a few things you need to understand to make the most of this blog post. Most importantly you need to know that our bodies have three energy pathways, they are: The ATP-PCr pathway, the glycolytic pathway and the oxidative pathway. The first two pathways do not require oxygen and are therefore considered ANAEROBIC while the third does require oxygen and is considered AEROBIC. The basic purpose of each one of these pathways is the same: to break carbon and hydrogen bonds in order to release energy and then use that energy to … Read More

Rowing – damper settings, efficiency and correct technique

Dora StenclovainstructionLeave a Comment

CrossFit uses rowing quite often as it’s a great conditioning tool. It’s low impact on your joints, it utilizes large muscle groups and it can really smoke you if you push hard enough. It practices opening/closing your body and hips just like in olympic lifting, so it’s a great development tool as well. Even though we probably row at least 2-3 times/week in warm ups and WODs, I often see poor technique and incorrect damper settings. In this article, I’ll explain while setting the damper to 10 is not that great of an idea and may just be exercising your ego and I’ll also cover correct technique. Setting up the rower When you get on the rower first thing you want to set up is the damper. The damper is the little wheel with numbers from 1 to 10 and it controls how much air is coming into the cage. This means that there is more air that the wheel spins against. Setting the damper is very individual and there are not na prescribed settings. It will also differ for different types of workouts. If you do sprints or generally shorter distances, you will probably be more effective with higher damper settings. For … Read More

Workout contexts

Zuzka ZavodnainstructionLeave a Comment

crossfit committed header banner

No matter how long you’ve been coming to the gym, every time you hear “Starting in 10 seconds!”, you feel nervous, the adrenaline starts flowing through your blood and your heart is pounding. Your daily workout is as much a physical effort as it is a mental one. That’s why it is important to have the right context going into class. You cannot attack every day as a competition day. What that would do to your fitness is a huge spike in the first 6-18 months that are eventually followed by a burnout or an injury. CrossFit methodology is supposed to be a lifetime fitness program. The movements we perform on a daily basis are hard and very technical, and they usually take a very long time to master. In fact, developing mastery of the basic skills takes a lifetime. Add intensity to it – doing workouts for time or for the maximum numbers of repetitions – and you will get a very powerful, but also very tough fitness program. Intensity without the foundation leads to undesired outcomes. It is very tempting to go hard and be on top of the leaderboard every day, but the true wisdom lies in … Read More

Snatch program

Joey Scafidiinstruction, newsLeave a Comment

olympic lifting technique

Our new strength cycle is all about the snatch and just like the previous cycles the format will remain the same. It will be 15 sessions over 6 weeks.   Last Monday, all of you that came to the gym found your max snatch, whether it was a power snatch or a full squat snatch. For some of you newer guys maybe you were going from the hang position. All versions are ok! While the goal is to eventually gain the mobility and technique required to do a full squat snatch, for some people that might happen over the course of this upcoming cycle and it might not.   The picture below is the time table for our snatch cycle. If you’re serious about improving your technique don’t miss snatch days!   15 sessions over 6 weeks is a great dose of volume to see some significant improvements in your technique and strength.   Typically the first few weeks will start out light. We’re developing the technique to be able to lift the heavier weights. Don’t let your ego win and start adding more weight before you’re ready! I’ve been guilty of this as well. You know your technique wasn’t … Read More

Newbies – New strength session – Linear progression

Joey ScafidiinstructionLeave a Comment

I talked about this briefly yesterday during the intro to the program for the day but it needs to be said again and in a little more depth. We’ve got a lot of new people in the gym and also a lot that have been with us for more than a year. The strength sessions for both groups will look very different. The people that have been with us for a longer time will no longer see the same quick and easy results as new people will and therefore, they’ll need  a little different approach. While you’re still relatively new to strength training the results come quickly; practically every session and that’s an awesome thing! There’s no sense in trying to rush into a more advanced program while there are still so many gains to be had on a very basic system. That system is called a Linear Progression. It’s extremely simple and extremely effective for newer people. We’ll be using it with squats during this program and also the bench press. The system goes like this: For our squats and bench the repetition scheme will say 3×5. That means that you’ll do 3 sets of 5 repetitions. 15 reps … Read More