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PROGRAMMING UPDATE

By 20th Jul 2016Knowledge Blog

I hope Monday’s post gave you some good insight into the program. If it didn’t, or if it brought up some questions, then give me a shout – I love talking health and fitness 😉

There are some subtle differences in the current training block compared to the previous one. Here’s what you can expect, along with some definitions of terms you’ll commonly see in the workout of the day.

Strength Work

  • Firstly, every time we do strength work it will continue to be max effort work. That means you’ll go to the heaviest load you can manage, for that day, and for that rep scheme. You’ll typically see “heavy single/double/triple” in the notes. The differences between a heavy single and a 1-RM, for example, is that on a 1-RM attempt you may end up failing a lift because you’re attempting a PB. Whereas on a heavy single there should be no misses because you aren’t maxing out. This develops confidence in the lift, which in turn develops strength, and stronger people are harder to kill.
  • Instead of repeating the same upper/lower body strength movement for 3 weeks, the movement will change on every max effort day. For example, strict presses for upper body strength this week and potentially power jerks instead next time. This helps to prevent or break plateaus, and also give you more exposure to different strength work more often.
  • There’ll be differences in the L1 and L2 streams here. L1 athletes will simply have more volume and tempo work. Why we do this will be explained in upcoming posts. L2 athletes will be working primarily on heavy singles.
  • Gymnastics strength work will still be paired with these strength movements. It’s an efficient and effective way to develop bodyweight strength, and strict gymnastics work is your foundation for all kipping work. As you will have seen in Monday’s post too, gymnastics comes before weightlifting in the CrossFit hierarchy of development.

Aerobic/Endurance Conditioning

  • We used a bit more of the long time domain efforts in the previous phase, but now you can expect to see long interval work. Remember, this doesn’t mean we stop the longer metcons, we’re simply layering in more variance.
  • The GI Jozi sessions will continue to be light and non-technical but you can expect to see an increasing volume of work per session. The Endurance Club is going to have lots of time in the saddle, with a sprinkling of movements designed to interfere with the muscle groups used in rowing.

Gymnastics Conditioning

  • Instead of just strict gymnastics work you’ll be doing more gymnastics-based metcons in order to improve upper body endurance and stamina. Sometimes there’ll be a  gymnastics push and pull, and sometimes a gymnastics movement will be coupled with a weightlifting movement that will interfere with the working muscles. You may not feel the lungs work much on these, but you’ll feel a lot of local muscular fatigue. Aside from swimming and cross country skiing (like the ski-erg), this is the best way to improve the endurance of upper body musculature.
  • On other days, gymnastics conditioning will be more skill-based. This is where you’ll learn the progressions for a new skill, improve a skill, or improve your capacity in a skill. As Greg Glassman says, a fitness program devoid of gymnastics practice and skills is deficient. This is also the sort of stuff you can’t do anywhere else. Even many CrossFit affiliates don’t have the space or resources for gymnastics skill work like rope climbs.
  • The CFJ Gymnastics program runs in 6-week blocks with classes on Thursday nights at 18h30 at CFJ East. The next intake is in 2 weeks so book in for even more gymnastics skill work that you won’t see in class!

Supplementary Exercises

  • A good CrossFit program should be injury prevention by design. However, I do still believe that there is room for accessory work. Such work is intended to keep you injury free by preventing any imbalances from developing while keeping the areas of most use (shoulders, midlines, knees) strong and stable.

To remind you yet again, the goals are to continue developing a broad fitness throughout life. Sometimes, you need a more tailored approach. That’s why we have coach Zuleikha in a new role at the gym to help you with goal setting, but more importantly to direct you to the best services we have to offer for those goals. So if you do feel like you’re a bit stuck, then reach out.

 

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