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The Purpose of Intensity

The Purpose of Intensity

Constantly varied functional movements performed at high intensity.

When you lookup the definition of CrossFit, this is the first sentence you will see. This basically sums up every other part of CrossFit outside of nutrition. So, for a moment stop and think about the movements you do at CrossFit and think of how they are functional. Pressing, running, pulling, pushing, jumping, picking things up…the list is long but not endless. There is a functional purpose in everything we do, if you don’t see the purpose, ask a coach, they should be able to answer that, quickly.

Now think of those same movements…do you perform them at High Intensity? If you’re not then it’s not CrossFit.

What High Intensity DOES NOT look like…

It’s not doing heavy deadlifts with terrible form because you are trying to keep the intensity high. That’s called an ER visit.

Intensity is not doing kipping pull ups because you can do more but have terrible shoulder strength and can’t do 3 strict pull ups. That’s called a torn rotator cuff.

The list goes on.

What intensity looks like…

Doing 5 more burpees when you feel like you’ve hit your limit and want to stop.

Doing 20 straight wall balls (because you know you can) instead of breaking it up into two sets of 10.

Doing heavy deadlifts at sets of three without dropping the bar in between each…and…every…rep.

Doing 65# thrusters because you know your form will go to crap after 5 at 95# but there are 15 in each set.

Going all out in a 12min AMRAP, instead of knowing you’ll be there for 12 minutes regardless so you might as well sand bag it.

“Discomfort creates adaptation, but it can be very tempting to avoid the continuous discomfort needed to keep driving adaptation—even as a CrossFit athlete who knows its rewards.” CrossFit Journal article Elliptical Syndrome Cripples Fran, Helen

Before I wrap this up, look at the workout called FRAN. 21, 15, 9, reps of 95# thrusters and pull ups. Regardless of how long you take to do the work, the work stays the same, it’s 45 reps of thrusters and pull ups. But if you can get that work done in five minutes, instead of 10, that’s where the results come. Intensity. If you can’t do the work in 5 minutes, maybe you need to lower the weight to keep the intensity.

Talk to your coach about how to get the best intensity out of every workout.

What the Open Means to Me…part 2

What the Open Means to Me…part 2

by Coach Blake

This is part 2 of this blog, click here to read part 1

It wasn’t during a Friday night lights, there wasn’t a ton of people in the gym, in fact I believe there was only a handful of people there. I hadn’t yet formally been introduced to Leighann, and had only seen her in passing a few times at that point. But I was more than willing to help cheer her on. I remember her being completely nervous, and she seemed to me, like she was a shy girl (again, I barely knew her at that point!) Matt decided that Erin would be the best choice as a judge for her to count her reps, so that he could coach, motivate, and help her overcome her fears. While Erin was filling out all the pertinent info on Leighann’s score sheet, I introduced myself to this shy new friend and asked if she minded if I helped cheer her on. Her response back to me (in her darling southern twang) “Oh that’s fine. I don’t expect to do much, I can barely even lift this weight,” she said in an almost confident response. She added, “I just don’t think I’d do well with like yelling in my face or anything like that,” she advised. “Oh no,” I said back, “I wouldn’t ever.” The equally usual shy Matt, assured as well, “Leighann, you just focus on what your doing, you got this,” he coached confidently. 3, 2, 1, GO….and she went! And she starts KILLING IT! Matt and I were awed, the Open magic was just happening! Next thing you know Matt and I are inches from Leighann’s face “GO Leighann, Go. You got more!” And she did. And she just kept repping that barbell like it was nothing. And by the end of her workout, Matt and I were as sweaty as she was. She finished that wod, dropped that barbell with and understated confidence, and with the biggest smile on her face said, “Whoooo, I am tired.” (So funny, and soooo Leighann) We lost it, and were all hugging her and high-fiving! You just couldn’t match that Open magic. And every year it’s repeated, and every year it’s a bond. It wasn’t just a lifelong friend I made that day, it was MY family growing.

It’s my yearly test. It’s still fun for me, even though I realize that one day it may not be. I still absolutely love to coach and adore every single one of our members. I love to see the drive in hungry veterans who want PR’s, as well as, the look of fear of the unknown slowly disappearing from first time members.

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