Topic of discussion: Nutrition

Work to a heavy single back squat

For time:

10 Pull-ups
20 Thrusters (95 lb./65 lb.)
30 Kettlebell swings (53 lb./35 lb.)
40 Push-ups
50 Sit-ups
60 Double-unders
50 Sit-ups
40 Push-ups
30 Kettlebell swings
20 Thrusters
10 Pull-ups

Post back squat loads and WOD time to comments.


We are in the DOG DAYS of summer – it’s flat out hot. Last week, I heard a few people mention how the heat is affecting them from headaches to stomach aches, and the heat is its taking toll. It also adds an element to WODs, particularly in the afternoon, and we all have to take extra care in staying safe. There are two things in particular you can do to help battle the heat: Let’s talk about hydration and scaling…

We’ve talked about drinking water (lots of it), and we all definitely do our best to stay hydrated. I also bet in the past two weeks, we’ve all done a WOD, sweat so bad during the workout, got home and took a shower, only to discover you were still sweating…Even if you only spend one hour at the gym, the amount you sweat in that hour and afterwards trying to cool your body down, you lose so much water. If you are suffering from headaches, stomach aches, etc., chances are, you have a little dehydration going on. I’ll lean our our doctor and nurse athletes for advice in this area, and remind everyone to drink plenty of water!!!

“Scaling” is the new dirty word…tell a CrossFitter to scale a workout, and you get one of two reactions:

The “confused dog” look…..

or Arnold makes an appearance.

Before we break this down, know one thing: Scaling is NOT a bad thing. It’s actually really smart and allows you to train for the long term. Sure, we all want to do every WOD RX’d, but until we become bionic, scaling a WOD is a pretty good deal. Here’s why:

Scaling allows you to do more WODs for the long term. In a typical month of CrossFit, we move 40 TONS of weight, and that doesn’t include body weight — I’m talking barbells, kettlebells, etc. If you look at our WODs from last week, in Helen-Grace, we moved more than 2,000 lbs. of weight in one workout. I’ll be honest, that WOD took a lot out of me, and I was TIRED. Tuesday, I came back to do heavy front squats and added more than 3,000 lbs. to my weekly total. In two days, I moved 2.5 tons of weight. By Wednesday, I needed some recovery time (I also hurt my foot, so I had to take a time out). Had I gone to JT on Wednesday, I could have pushed through the WOD and had a slow time (if RXd was my goal), but most likely, I would have scaled it. Adding a scaled WOD in a heavy week allows me to keep coming and advancing my skills, keeping a consistent schedule of WODs. I have learned if I want to meet my long term goals, scaling a WOD each week allows me to meet my goals faster than if I did every WOD Rx’d….sounds a little counter-intuitive, right?

Think of it like this. Imagine you are landscaping your house, and Lowe’s dropped off one ton (2,000 lbs.) of giant landscaping rocks in your front yard, that were actually supposed to be delivered to the back yard. Would you start hauling those rocks to your back yard, one at a time? I know, I know, you’re a CrossFitter, so the answer is probably “yes”. At the end of day 1, you’ve moved all of the rocks to the back yard. Your wife sees them out back and decides she really wants the rocks to go back in the front….are you going to move them all again? No way! You go get a rock moving machine, or hire some workers to help you out. Guess what, you scaled the work. It’s about working smart, not hard.

Scaling also does not mean doing less work or effort. CrossFit is hard period. When you scale a WOD, it creates an opportunity to focus on technique, or work different pathways to get a very different workout. For example, if I do Fran (21-15-9 thrusters (95/65) and pull-ups), it may take me five or six minutes to do it Rx’d. If I scale the weight in order to finish Fran in two or three minutes, it’s an entirely different workout. Make no mistake, both are HARD. I would scale the WOD depending on my WODs that week and where I was at on meeting my goals.

Lastly, how you eat, sleep and hydrate all affect how you perform in a workout. You would no more get in your car and drive to Nebraska with your gas tank on E and the gas light on, but we all have asked our bodies to push through an RX workout when we ate junk the day before, didn’t drink enough water or didn’t get enough sleep. Why? Because we either let RX get in the way, or we think if we push through it, somehow, we’ve done more work. Just like you wouldn’t drive your car on fumes, we shouldn’t push our body on fumes either. Those days when you are running low on gas, come in and work on a skill or do the WOD, but cut the reps in half. Trust me, your body will thank you for it later.

“There is no such thing as overtraining…just under-recovery,” Coach Burgener. One way to advance your skills as a CrossFitter is to take time to recover. “Active recovery” days are as important as rest days. Active recovery means scaling a WOD or working on a skill. As a coach, our job is to push you to your limit that day. Some days, you will be able to push and go all out; other days, you may only be able to go 75% because you’ve done six other workouts that week. Learn to listen to what your body is telling you. There will be days your body tells you to push and go all out – those days are fun, and when they come, take full advantage and go hard!! And, there will be days when your body is screaming at you to rest or scale – listen and do it. (You know when those days are because in the middle of a WOD, your only thought is, “I should have done ____ weight”.)

Post thoughts to comments.

Monday WOD, August 1, 2011

11 thoughts on “Monday WOD, August 1, 2011

  • July 31, 2011 at 4:21 pm

    I asked Lucas to comment this week on the WODs – keep an eye out for his comments on strategies, scaling, and more!

    THANK YOU Lucas!

  • July 31, 2011 at 5:04 pm

    Thanks for talking about hydration and scaling. I scale a lot, because I often can’t do the womens Rx weight, but I really enjoy pushing myself on body weight stuff. That’s not to get stranger, (oops! I mean stronger!) faster, better, its just for the thrill of throwing myself into something. It felt great to do 100 burpee pullups with Angie and Karli last week, but I wouldn’t do it every day.

  • July 31, 2011 at 8:33 pm

    SQUAT – work on proper depth while maintaining form. No one will get hurt squatting heavy as long as that lumbar curve you hear so much about is maintained throughout. And keep a tight core during the entire lift. Big breath at the top and hold until you get back up there.

    WOD – these chippers are the best. A grouping of good stuff here.

    If you consider yourself a bad ass and possibly a lunatic, you may be thinking unbroken (with limited rest in between movements) is the way to go. Even if possible, I don’t know if it’s wise, but if you’re really feeling it then by all means go for it. The push ups would be hand release and, therefore, not necessarily unbroken.

    For everyone else, the key here (as is often the case) is to keep moving. Long periods of rest add up over the course of a WOD like this. If possible, take no longer than 10 seconds rest at any point between an attempt. If you need to do singles, then do singles. But, don’t take more than 10 seconds rest and you’ll like the results.

    And for the love of all that is holy, breathe and take it easy at the start. We tend to go like maniacs on the first movement and not take a single breath and then wonder why we are so out of breath. Take it easy and once you complete that second batch of push ups and still feel money, then go balls to the walls and tear it up.

    Lastly, everyone can do this WOD. Scale here and there and you’ll be good to go.

  • July 31, 2011 at 10:02 pm

    Referencing the “staying hydrated” section. . .
    I drink a lot of water normally, on a regular none heat stroke day I drink constantly to stay hydrated. During this weather I have found that some days, regardless of how much water I drink, how early I start hydrating, how icy my water is, it doesn’t matter, sometimes I just can’t drink enough!!!
    I will drink all day almost to a point of discomfort to make sure I’m hydrated for the wod. I drink during warm up and during the wod and during/after the wod I am always dying of thirst but too full to drink anymore…..thoughts, suggestions, do I have a medical problem!? 😀 But seriously, any advice/help is greatly appreciated!

  • August 1, 2011 at 7:09 am

    135lbs back squat
    20:50 … glad to be there at 6am.. even then it’s so hot, can’t imagine 4 , 5, and 6 pm classes. Drink lots!!

  • August 1, 2011 at 7:57 am

    315 lb back squat

    22:32, need to learn how to do double unders.

  • August 1, 2011 at 8:00 am

    225# on squat then stopped

    20:35 Rx on WOD; i am still light headed 2 hours later.

  • August 1, 2011 at 4:40 pm

    Congrats to Amie on a BS PR! You look strong sista.
    Andy and I had a BLAST watching the games yesterday. Totally recommend watching a little if you have time.
    21:30. About 10 minutes wasted on DU.

  • August 1, 2011 at 5:41 pm

    Thank you Angie!!!

    Fun day at the box! PRd back squats at 195# – woo hoo! 27:11 on the WOD part – did 1.5 pood on the first round of KBS (that was HEAVY) and had to row in place of DUs.

    Went back this afternoon to work on jerk footwork – bum foot said no. Tried snatches and my tired legs said no. So I mostly hung around and talked 🙂

    Looking forward to tomorrow!!

  • August 1, 2011 at 9:10 pm

    Got Chris to xfit for the first time since serious studying began.

    His back squat 125#; mine 115#.

    WOD: 27ish for me. He got 24ish. A little light on the thrusters. 55#/65#


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