181227 - Throwback Thursday

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As a coach, my biggest challenge is keeping people on the right track. We have literally hundreds of movements and variations for which to work out the correct biomechanics. We have to then modify each position for the individual athlete's body type and relative arm, leg and torso lengths. Once the athlete has a modicum of success at a movement, they often want to go as fast as possible or lift as much as they can, biomechanics be damned. My job, and the most important part of my job is to hold them back.
Greg Glassman (founder of CrossFit with Lauren Jenai) always stated that virtuosity is the key. Being uncommonly good at the common. What do your air squats look like? Perfect? What does your front squat look like? Perfect? Do you understand the mechanism of the clean? Then and only then should you be really attempting a 1 rep max on your clean. At CCCF we get folks who watch high-performing athletes on You Tube and decide that they're ready for that level of competition or weight or intensity. Then I look like the asshole when I say, not yet.

Patience you must have, my young Padawan
— Jedi Master Yoda

Let's look at some numbers: Hours trained per person per week. The most we have in our gym is 6. Rich Froning gets that in one and a quarter days. Chris Spealler is 5'5", weighs 151 and has a 285 Clean and Jerk. How many in our gym have that? Yeah, right. Am I being a party pooper and saying you can't do it? No, hell no. What I am saying is that Mechanics > Consistency > Intensity. What are the mechanics of the lift or movement? If I have to "remind you" of what the movement is, then you probably don't have the mechanics down nor have you become consistent with those mechanics. Does your power clean outmatch your clean? (and if you just asked if I meant "squat" clean or equate the power clean with a hang clean, then ditto).

Here's the question you have to ask yourself. What is the point of my training? If you don't have a point, then you can't have goals. If you don't have goals, then why are you trying to be the fastest person on the board? Here's a pro-tip: If you scale any portion of the workout, then you are not in a position to go fast. If you scale, then something's not right. Is it too heavy? Work on strength. Is it too complex? Break it down and work on the pieces, then put it together.  Bottom line is if it's not right, then it just gets worse as you fatigue. If it's bad you can get hurt. Thing is, is that I like you guys. And I don't want you to get hurt. It's absolutely your prerogative to get hurt if you want to, but I'd prefer that you didn't.

Here's how you're going to get to intensity. You're going to learn. You're going to practice until you become proficient in the movements associated with CrossFit. You do it with reasonable load until you can perfect it with that reasonable load and then you increase the load incrementally. Once in a while, you check 1RMs. Like during our quarterly CrossFit Total or internal weightlifting meets. Once your mechanics break down at the limits of your abilities, it's time to check yourself and go back to repeating the mechanics until you're proficient with that new, presumably heavier load.
That goes for complex bodyweight movements as well. If you haven't done the work on dead hang pull-ups, why are you kipping? If you can't hardly do a pull-up or a dip, why are you trying to muscle-up? If you don't care about CrossFit competition, why are you doing kipping muscle-ups or kipping handstand push-ups anyway? You should be building the strength necessary to do those movements in a static manner. Read Foundations to see just what the breadth of knowledge can and should be!

Like I said. It's my job to teach you correct movement, insist on correct movement, develop you as an athlete and provide as much information as possible to get you to your fitness goals. Sometimes, it's through holding you back. I'm not hamstringing you because it's how I get my jollies, it's because I owe it to you to get you to the finish line in one piece and keep you as an athlete for life. 

2 rounds
10 lunges
10 inchworms in place
5 wall squats
5 wall-walks

PVC pass thrus
KB shoulder reset
Banded hip: Forward and lateral distraction

Coach Prep
Lunge form and practice
Overhead position work
Hang squat clean thruster work

5 mins max distance on 10m course
2 DBs or KBs 25/15
5 lunges
5 push presses
Rest 2:00
3 mins max DB/KB hang squat clean thruster
Rest 2:00
2 mins max distance DB/KB bear crawls

Michael Reynolds

CrossFit Level 1 Coach