25 Apr 2013
Every minute, on the minute, for 20 minutes:
Even minutes – Row Sprint x 30 seconds
Odd minutes – Power Snatch or Snatch x 3 reps @ 75-80% of today’s 1RM
Running for exercise is pervasive in our culture. By running, I don’t mean sprinting. I mean jogging. 2-3 miles minimum. Slow. 20 minutes and up. And I’ve run across a few articles which address this, which should be read in full, but from which I will excerpt. From Charles Staley:
The costs of jogging however, are considerable, and often not appreciated or adequately considered:
- Jogging reduces or at least interferes with efforts to increase lean body mass, strength, and power. In other words, it has demonstrably feminizing effects.
- Jogging, like all aerobic activities, is by definition, time consuming. Unlike resistance training, the only way to create progressive overload with jogging is to do more of it.
- Dovetailing with the previous point, one serious downside to jogging is that the more you do it, the better you get at it, which in turn reduces the supposed benefits of the activity, requiring you to do more of it to compensate for the reduction in benefit. In other words, the more you do it, the less it does for you.
- Jogging, particularly for those who tend to be drawn to it (overweight people), tends to have negative orthopedic consequences, especially for lower-body joints.
- For many people, jogging is inherently unpleasant and viewed as an “unnecessary evil” (typically for the purpose of “losing weight.”)
I’d like you to start thinking of your gym-time less like a strength coach and more like an economist. Don’t simply look at the benefits of exercises – look at the costs as well. Be frugal. Only spend when you must, and even then, only for the best bargains.
And from DH Kiefer:
Think about it this way: Your body is a responsive, adaptive machine that has evolved for survival. If you’re running on a regular basis, your body senses this excessive energy expenditure, and adjusts to compensate. Remember, no matter which way we hope the body works, its endgame is always survival. If you waste energy running, your body will react by slowing your metabolism to conserve energy. Decreasing energy output is biologically savvy for your body. Your body wants to survive longer while you do what it views as a stressful, useless activity. Decreasing T3 production increases efficiency and adjusts your metabolism to preserve energy immediately.
Chemically, running is a disaster if you are trying to lose weight, build lean muscle mass, develop any area of fitness besides stamina or stay healthy. Run less. If you LOVE running. Try sprinting short distances x4 or 8 intervals. Rest 3 times as long as it takes to run your distance (<400m) and then go home.
09 Nov 2012
Notice speed off the floor. Not too fast, emphasis is on positioning and aggressiveness out of the power, or jumping, position. Quick Feet.
Workout of the Day
Take 12-15 minutes and build to a 1RM Snatch
1000 Meter Row
60 Kettlebell Swings (53/35)
30 Ring Dips
600 Meter Run
Saturday we will have our normal 9am class at Cactus, but about 10 of our athletes will be competing at Lift it/Love it at CF 480 in North Scottsdale. The competition runs from 8am to about noon, so wear your Cactus gear and come cheer us on! Address is 15885 n Greenway Hayden Loop, Scottsdale. We will be updating the Cactus Facebook page throughout the competition, so you can get updates there regarding what athletes are in what heats, results, wods, etc. Families welcome!
Complete as many rounds and reps as possible in 10 minutes of:
5 Handstand Push-Ups
15 Kettlebell Swings (70/53#)
Michelle joined the Paleo Challenge to give Joy some accountability and encouragement in the challenge. She has two young kids, a busy schedule, and was out of shape. Michelle had known about Cactus CrossFit for over a year, but Joy’s invitation to join her in the challenge was just what the Dr. ordered. I asked Michelle to write about her experience because there are so many young mothers out there who are intimidated by CrossFit or just think that it is for dudes only. The following is her story:
I was recently huddled in the corner, my eyes held open with toothpicks in an utterly unsatisfying Mom-funk. My friend understood this because she too has an infant and invited me to join her in the Paleo Challenge at Cactus CrossFit. I had vaguely heard of this recent CrossFit phenomenon and thought nothing of it since I am familiar with (and actually LOVE) working out. And the Paleo diet seemed within reach since my family aims to eat all unprocessed foods anyways.
I showed up to the “gym” the first day and was immediately outside of my comfort zone. “Where is the equipment? What is a WOD? You want me to do 50 reps of that? How long is a meter? Touch my toes to the bar?” And I still after 8 weeks don’t know what AMRAP means (ok, I am kidding). It was weird. I am no stranger to working out, either. I dabbled in athletics in middle and high school, worked at a gym for 4 years, and even have my certification as an aerobics instructor.
CrossFit rocked my world. In a good way. I soon became addicted. I felt welcomed, accepted, and encouraged at every workout regardless of who I knew in the room. The community, friendly-competition, and accountability in the group classes remain unmatched to any other exercise experiences I have had. I found all the coaches at Cactus Crossfit to be well educated and great teachers when it comes to explaining the movements alongside of what NOT to do. Regardless of said explanations, I still need a lot of correction and help (which I usually and pridefully receive pretty poorly but somehow not here). The workouts stretch me mentally and physically. Although CrossFit was much different than my initial expectations it far exceeded them and has literally set the bar for future workout programs (I am moving out of the country otherwise I would be a Cacti forever!).
Onto the Paleo diet. Not gonna lie, I wanted to hurt someone the first three days. Unconsciously knowing this, my husband and three year old left every room I entered for the first week of the challenge. I had unwittingly become addicted to carbs and sugar during and after my second pregnancy (or maybe always). As time marched on, I fell in love with Paleo. It gave me new lease of life. Corny but I am serious. My husband and I love to cook and finding new recipes and trying new flavors was really fun. I also was unaware of how lousy food was making me feel until Paleo made me feel sooo much better. I was convinced, in the beginning, I would be unable to give up my tall glass of milk at every meal but I don’t even miss it (my Minnesotan parents just died). Eating clean is something my family will continue. Another challenger said it best when he said, “You feel 100% better eating this way and it’s very hard to deny yourself once you get a taste of feeling great.”
As we wrapped up the challenge, I made a list of about 50 ways I benefited from changing my diet and trying CrossFit. I’ll leave you with a handful:
I am pounds lighter, inches skinnier, and immeasurably stronger. I have more energy and am far more productive during the day. I made new friends. I learned something new. Less surface area means I am using less soap thus saving money. It is easier to make better food choices. I can keep up with my children. The way my husband looks at me! I get dressed in my pre-pregnancy clothes every morning instead of sitting around in frumpy maternity clothes. I’m out of my Mom-funk and I feel awesome!!!
20 Mar 2012
Complete as many rounds and reps as possible in 6 minutes of:
115/75 lb Thrusters x 3 reps
Pull-Ups x 6 reps
30″/24″ Box Jumps x 9 reps
Big shout-out to Sam for getting 10 Muscle Ups in 12.4 at Core CrossFit Saturday! Lots of sore legs around the gym after that workout, make sure you are getting your recovery through hydration, foam rolling, and light active work through a full range of motion!
02 Mar 2012
Workout of the Day
Reebok CrossFit Games Open Workout 12.2
Proceed through the sequence below completing as many reps as possible in 10 minutes of:
30 Snatch (M 75 / F 45 lbs)
30 Snatch (M 135 / F 75 lbs)
30 Snatch (M 165 / F 100 lbs)
Max Rep Snatch (M 210 / F 120 lbs)
Saturday we will have a “girl” workout at 9am for everyone who has done today’s workout, then around 9:30 we will have our competitors complete 12.2. Come in on Saturday for a great workout and/or to cheer on your fellow Cacti to their best performance! We hope everyone will stick around to watch our Open competitors push themselves to their best performance!
Five rounds for time of:
95/65 lb Hang Power Snatch x 10 reps
Double-Unders x 30 reps
Don’t Forget! Physical Therapy tonight from 4-6pm, and you can see what the Games wod will be by going to this website at 6pm.
17 Jan 2012
300 Meter Run
Burpees x 10 reps
Pull-Ups x 15 reps
95/65 lb Overhead Squats x 20 reps
Pull-Ups x 15 reps
Burpees x 10 reps
300 Meter Run