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

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Old 11-30-2007, 09:04 AM   #1
Jeff Evans
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What could I be doing wrong?

After the CFT this week I checked the tables in the FAQ and I'm just barely above "untrained". This is a little frustrating since I've been eating Paleo since April with a few cheats, get 8-9 hrs of sleep (or more) almost every night, and doing Crossfit WODs for over six months (some breaks in there when work got too busy). I have several theories to explain my lack of progress.
  1. Improper form - this is mostly due to not having any coaching or significant past experience. Ideally I should be able to make some progress on my own through self-research, the website/videos, etc. but so far it hasn't really happened.
  2. Incorrect diet - probably not ideal (90% Paleo with a few cheats here and there tried to follow Zone for a while but found it difficult) but it's really very solid. Seems quite unlikely to be holding me back this much.
  3. Not pushing hard enough - this is a possibility but I don't know how to recognize it or correct it. May go along with lack of coaching.
  4. Not enough rest - again seems unlikely. I can't be accused of over-training and while I don't get the ideal 9.5 hours every night I get plenty.
  5. Too few workout days - been getting more into it lately but still can only manage 2-3 most weeks between work and everything else. I typically DO the WOD scaled on those days.

Anything I may be missing? Basically at this point I would be overjoyed with any type of improvement such as
  • Increased strength
  • Increased muscle mass
  • Decreased fat
  • More energy
  • Better/more confident form
  • Better flexibility

it's just that the CFT is the most easily quantifiable benchmark. My workout log is here (safe): http://www.board.crossfit.com/showthread.php?t=11808 Any feedback or past experience is greatly appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 11-30-2007, 09:14 AM   #2
Jay Cohen
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Re: What could I be doing wrong?

Jeff;
2-3 rorkouts per week with not enough intensity, poor form, could be the problem.
Any chance you can;

1. Get to an affiliate, even if it's just once/twice per month, most have Saturday class's
2. Find a work out buddy
3. Find a Oly coach/team, train with them
4. Buy Starting Strength, follow Rip's program for a few months.
5. Attend a Cert
6. You mentioned diet, are you eating enough, just maintaining, or losing weight.

Finally, what are your goals and path to achieving them? If you think that just doing the WOD 2-3 times per week will get you there, we'll, guess it ain't working.

Chicago should/does have the resources to get you stronger

Good post, you should get some solid feedback.
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Old 11-30-2007, 09:32 AM   #3
Jake Di Vita
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Re: What could I be doing wrong?

I would say it's probably a combination of the reasons you mentioned with intensity and frequency probably being the bulk of it. I really didn't start seeing any substantial gains until I made sure I was doing the work 4 to 6 days a week.

Try increasing your frequency if you can. You get plenty of sleep for recovery (especially when considering the frequency of your work outs right now), I'd suggest maybe losing a half hour or an hour every other day and adding a workout into that time gained?

If you are feeling lethargic or think you are overreaching after a few weeks you can always scale it back.

Hope this helps.
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Old 11-30-2007, 09:46 AM   #4
Gant Grimes
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Re: What could I be doing wrong?

This is easy.

YOU ARE NOT LIFTING ENOUGH.

Not enough weight. Not enough volume. Not enough frequency. Not enough of the right exercises.

I searched for terms on your log. Since April, here is the number of times you have done heavy lifting in the following exercises outside of a CFT:

Squat: 1
Deadlift: 3
Press: 0
Push press: 2
Bench press: 4 (counting Lynne and Linda)

Your metcon numbers are fine...because you work metcon! Like Jay said, get to an affiliate and learn the lifts, especially your deadlift. Watch videos. Read threads. You've already learned from SS. Read it some more.

1) Do the full CF warmup.
2) Do SS, religiously, 3 days a week.
3) Do the WOD section from Catalyst Athletics AFTER your SS workouts. They're short, and they'll make you stronger while keeping your metcon up. Link (wfs)
4) Eat more.
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Old 11-30-2007, 10:23 AM   #5
Jason Homesley
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Re: What could I be doing wrong?

Jeff,
I am in the suburbs of Chicago. In St. Charles, my partner and I are avid CrossFitters, and are in the works of becoming affiliated out here. you are welcome to workout with us anytime you want and we can help you. No we are not certified, bu have alot of experience. We are both military veterans, he is a personal trainer and I instructed fitness while I was in the Army. i am not rying to sell ourselves to you just offering help. Let me know
my e-mail is homesley.jason@gmail.com
good luck,
also if you have time or can make time contact the guys at crossfit rockford, Brent and Dan Colson and Sue, I forget her last name, but they really have a good operation and put together fun workouts, but be ready to be smoked.
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Old 11-30-2007, 10:28 AM   #6
Darren Zega
 
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Re: What could I be doing wrong?

Buy/do Starting Strength
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Old 11-30-2007, 10:33 AM   #7
Tom Fetter
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Re: What could I be doing wrong?

er, I think Gant's nailed it. Find more time to work out, and push harder when you do. Protect 45 minutes each and every day, same time, and move to the 3/1 schedule. Among other things, the 3/1 schedule forces you to protect that time every day of the week; it promotes consistency.

If you go with the WODs 3/1, and eat, and even do the official CFWU MOST days, you'll get stronger. Truly. Sue me if you don't.

t.
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Old 11-30-2007, 10:39 AM   #8
Jay Cohen
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Re: What could I be doing wrong?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jake Di Vita View Post
I would say it's probably a combination of the reasons you mentioned with intensity and frequency probably being the bulk of it. I really didn't start seeing any substantial gains until I made sure I was doing the work 4 to 6 days a week.

Try increasing your frequency if you can. You get plenty of sleep for recovery (especially when considering the frequency of your work outs right now), I'd suggest maybe losing a half hour or an hour every other day and adding a workout into that time gained?

If you are feeling lethargic or think you are overreaching after a few weeks you can always scale it back.

Hope this helps.
Jake;
Heading up to Fenton this weekend for Steve Cotter workshop with Ken Blackburn. Staying at Holiday Inn Express at Silver lake.
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Old 11-30-2007, 12:20 PM   #9
Jake Di Vita
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Re: What could I be doing wrong?

Very cool. I've been wanting to start a CF Gym in this area for awhile now, but considering my lack of start up capital and the state of the economy around here - it keeps getting pushed back further and further.

How long will you be in the area for?
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Old 11-30-2007, 06:33 PM   #10
Jeff Evans
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Re: What could I be doing wrong?

Wow great replies. One thing I forgot to mention in my OP is I do have a copy of SS and have been using it primarily to learn proper form.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay Cohen View Post
Finally, what are your goals and path to achieving them? If you think that just doing the WOD 2-3 times per week will get you there, we'll, guess it ain't working.
I think you nailed down a problem I forgot to account for in my OP - undefined goals, also evidenced by the inclusion of my second list. I think for now I will focus on gaining strength as my primary goal.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jake Di Vita View Post
I would say it's probably a combination of the reasons you mentioned with intensity and frequency probably being the bulk of it. I really didn't start seeing any substantial gains until I made sure I was doing the work 4 to 6 days a week.

Try increasing your frequency if you can. You get plenty of sleep for recovery (especially when considering the frequency of your work outs right now), I'd suggest maybe losing a half hour or an hour every other day and adding a workout into that time gained?
That's a good suggestion. I had recently started trying to get tons of sleep after reading Lights Out: Sleep, Suar, and Survival but I may need to reevaluate that decision given my current situation and some newfound concerns about the book's credibility.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gant Grimes View Post
YOU ARE NOT LIFTING ENOUGH.

Not enough weight. Not enough volume. Not enough frequency. Not enough of the right exercises.
Your first point is exactly what I'm trying to solve from this post! But the latter three are all well taken.

Quote:
I searched for terms on your log. Since April, here is the number of times you have done heavy lifting in the following exercises outside of a CFT:

Squat: 1
Deadlift: 3
Press: 0
Push press: 2
Bench press: 4 (counting Lynne and Linda)
This is useful analysis that I should have done myself before posting. My methodology so far: do I have time to do a WOD today? If not, then oh well. If so then do it or a scaled version. It hardly even occurred to me to work on certain lifts in isolation/outside of the WOD. Obviously this is going to leave some gaps.

Quote:
Your metcon numbers are fine...because you work metcon! Like Jay said, get to an affiliate and learn the lifts, especially your deadlift. Watch videos. Read threads. You've already learned from SS. Read it some more.

1) Do the full CF warmup.
2) Do SS, religiously, 3 days a week.
3) Do the WOD section from Catalyst Athletics AFTER your SS workouts. They're short, and they'll make you stronger while keeping your metcon up. Link (wfs)
4) Eat more.
You touched on another point I missed - not warming up. My rationalization has always been a lack of time but this is pretty lame in context of the total time it takes to walk to the gym, get changed, etc. I'm also definitely going to check out this Catalyst Athletics stuff.

As for eating more, I'm a bit weary given the battle it's been to lose each pound. But I suppose there's no way to tell besides trying it (while watching the waistline of course)!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Fetter View Post
Protect 45 minutes each and every day, same time, and move to the 3/1 schedule. Among other things, the 3/1 schedule forces you to protect that time every day of the week; it promotes consistency.
I like the idea of protecting time. As the old saying goes - if something is important you make the time. This also leads to one final point I missed originally - negative attitude/not having fun. I mean, even if I have specific fitness goals there's no reason I shouldn't have fun trying to get there. I mean look at today's WOD (1 PU 1st min, 2 PU 2nd min...). Nobody else in the gym is doing stuff like this. It's cool!

It's kind of a chicken/egg problem (can't get confidence without progress, hard to progress without good attitude) that spills over into other areas of my life too. Working on it...

Quote:
If you go with the WODs 3/1, and eat, and even do the official CFWU MOST days, you'll get stronger. Truly. Sue me if you don't.
Don't worry - the only lawyers I know do IP

Quote:
Originally Posted by Darren Zega View Post
Buy/do Starting Strength
I got the book some time back but I will actually do it now.

Thanks for the great replies everyone! I've got some planning to do now
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