Sunday, June 5, 2011

Crossfit Total


Saturday, June 4th brought another competition my way.

For those of you not familiar, The Crossfit Total is a series of three olympic style lifts: 

The Back Squat
The Press
The Deadlift

Here is some information about what the Crossfit Total is and the theory behind it from Mark Rippetoe, founder of Crossfit.

If you don't have time to read the above link, Rippetoe states, "The way to bring more strength to the
CrossFit approach is with the CrossFit Total.  The CrossFit Total is the sum of the best of three attempts at the squat, the press, and the deadlift, the three most effective lifts in existence for developing and testing functional strength."

For those of you not familiar with me....I am the LAST guy who has cared much about lifting weights in my life.  While in love with Crossfit, I've never been terribly fond about lifting.  Growing up a soccer player, it just bored me.  That was for "those guys, the meatheads."  

So that begs the question....Craig.....Why enter an olympic lifting competition, then??!?!!!

--Because it was there
--Because it was a challenge
--Because I wanted to see where I am strength-wise
--Because when some pressure and competition come into play, you never know what you can accomplish
--Because of the camaraderie
--Being vulnerable makes me better

What I Learned
--Lifting can me fun, energizing, invigorating.....and not for "meatheads" only.
--The mind is a powerful thing.
--I'm stronger than I thought I was.
--There are a lot of smaller, MUCH smaller guys and ladies MUCH stronger than me. (I knew this, but it was amazing to see!)

And the number one thing I learned.......I have a new appreciation for strength training.  Allow me to elaborate:  A common workout schedule at Crossfit is to spend a few minutes getting stretched out often followed by about 15-20 minutes of strength work before jumping into the actual Workout of the Day, or the WOD.  Over the past several months I found myself looking ahead to the WOD, not caring as much about the lifting, and trying to "save my energy" for the WOD.  At 6'2" and around 240 lbs., I SHOULD be able to lift considerable weight.  While I'm not looking to be a bodybuilder or be a competitive lifter, I am someone who is always looking to get better, to learn, to succeed....especially with things I enjoy and that are good for me. (i.e. my health and wellness!)  So when ladies and gentlemen HALF MY SIZE are lifting 50% MORE THAN ME, it becomes inspiring and motivating at the same time.  Yesterday brought a whole new appreciation for strength training, functional strength training.  

So what were my results?  See below with some explanation and information: 

Back Squat:  300 lbs.  I USED TO HATE SQUATTING!!!  It hurt and it was uncomfortable having all that weight on my back.  Quite honestly, I felt like a wimp as I just could not get used to doing it right in order to PREVENT injury.  Too many people refuse to squat stating it hurts their knees.  However, I'm now a firm believer that IF YOU LEARN PROPER FORM, CHECK YOUR EGO AND USE THE PROPER WEIGHT, THEN YOU SHOULD NOT HAVE PAIN.  I am proof of that!

Press:  145 lbs.  FORM.  FORM.  FORM.  My previous PR for this was 165 lbs.  On my first attempt I failed and was promptly instructed to change my grip.  On my second attempt, I nailed it.  I went for a new PR at 166 lbs. and just could not do it.  I was intimidated, anxious, and not confident.  The mind is a powerful thing!

Deadlift:  375 lbs.  My previous PR was 325, so I was thrilled here, and I think I could have gone heavier, however I would have really compromised form and risked injury.  I think I like the deadlift and I'm not sure why.  It is such a functional movement!

My Crossfit Total:  820
*this is the total number of lbs. from all three lifts.

What does that mean?  Well, it depends who you ask.  If someone asks me, it means the following:
--First, I'm proud of my total.  I never really thought I could break 800.
--I'm proud of 820 as the experienced men strive to break 1,000.
--I now know what my max weights are for these three standard lifts, and they are legit.
--I now have a sound starting point when I go into the gym to lift 60-80% of my max.
--I feel like I have something new for which to strive, and I can focus on good form and getting stronger which in turn leads to being more fit, more healthy.
--I want to break a Crossfit Total of 900 in the next year.  This gives me a goal to reach.  At 39, I'd be thrilled with that.  Remember, I've NEVER, EVER strength trained before.
--This score made me think about how my dietary habits can help aid my strength.  Whew...a whole 'nother topic!

I think this sums this whole thing up for me..........

1 comment:

  1. Nice job on the total. Those are solid numbers. I love strength training and would take that over a metcon any day. My strength work took a back seat over the 7 weeks of sectionals and now I need to get back into it because I'm feeling like I lost a bit of strength, especially in my back squat.



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