Fun announcements part 2

Yesterday I promised some suggestions to make your daily CrossFit Austin experience better.  I am going to borrow some material from my friend and colleague CJ Martin owner of CrossFit Invictus. The following is a slightly paraphrased version of a post he wrote back in May.  All of these suggestions are a applicable to you as an athlete and can help make CFA an even friendlier place!

All gyms have a natural flow to them – a pattern by which members arrive, situate themselves and prepare to have a great workout. For some, it’s sprinting in and joining the already-in-progress group warm-up (ahem, “A”-Game), but for others it entails some pre-WOD mingling and catching up with friends. I love this, and heartily encourage it as our community is what makes CrossFit Invictus so different from other places. Nonetheless, I am proposing some new rules that will improve both your socializing and athletic performance. So next time you are in, go with the following flow of the gym:

2. Gather with Friends at the Back of the Building and Roll – Some of the best tools in the gym are the black foam rollers and lacrosse balls (individual and those taped together). In my opinion, they are not being used nearly enough. Rolling some of your tight muscle groups helps get needed blood flow to them, loosens them so they will contract and relax better, and generally improves their functionality for the athletic endeavor you are about to embark upon. And the great thing is, you can roll and socialize at the same time. Yes, your conversation might be interrupted occasionally by a yelp, but that’s just good fun and provides for some comedic relief. So gather there and roll while you catch up with friends.

3. Dynamic, Skill-Based Warm-Up with Group –
Once group session begins, your coach will put you through a dynamic warm-up. Recognize that this is not only a warm-up, but also an opportunity to put your body in ideal positions. Use this time to reinforce proper mechanics. For instance, when you lunge, think about how you lunge in a split jerk or split clean. Are you grooving that ideal pattern, or are you forward on the toe and too narrow? Make the most of this time and perform each movement perfectly.

4. Strength/Skill Work –
No ego. Nobody is impressed when you deadlift 400 lbs. and herniate two discs in the process. Strive for virtuosity here. Move well and your numbers will progressively skyrocket. Move poorly and you might get some big numbers for a while, but you also run the risk of missing valuable training sessions because you are nursing injuries. This is your chance to perfect movements without a clock pressuring you to move quickly. Take the opportunity to be perfect. Once you have been consistently perfect, then begin to be consistently perfect with big weights.

5. Timed Workout – Go hard . . . and be damn-near perfect. I can accept slight deviations of form when you’re hitting it at high intensity, but you should be striving for perfection. (And if your coach’s interpretation of “slight deviation of form” is different from yours, you are the one who is wrong. Listen to your coach and slow down.)

6. Clean Up – Once you have completed your workout, please give us a hand by wiping down the bars and placing everything back where you found it. There is, however, one caveat: Be respectful of those who are still working out. It’s better to cheer someone on or relax than walk right in front of them with your barbell and weights. Nobody likes to be last, particularly when everyone else is cleaning up around them. Wipe down your bar and do a little static stretching while you cheer for others, then you can put your gear away and give them a hand with theirs.

7. Log Your Performance – If you don’t have a Performance Log, your coach will be chatting with you this week. They are essential to tracking your athletic progress. You will never know if what you are doing is effective unless you can track what you have been doing.

8. Post-WOD Recovery Work – If your coach puts you through a post-WOD recovery drill (stretching or additional skill work) please view it with the same respect you view the first portions of the workout. Recovery is instrumental to getting more fit. If you slack here, it will show. If your coach ran out of time, you’re not excused from stretching. Most of you know our protocols for post-WOD stretching, and even if you don’t, any stretching after your WOD is better than none. Get it done – your body will thank you.

9. GHD Machines – Almost as neglected as the foam rollers are our beautiful GHD machines. End your workout the way you began it, by socializing near the back wall. Jump on the GHD and knock out 10 sit-ups and 10 hip extensions. Then let a friend on to do the same. Switch on and off until you have done somewhere between 30-50 sit-ups and extensions.

Now back to your regularly schedule program…