Registration Open! THROW-DOWN CANCER - Nov. 15th 2014 @ SCF

10 Ways to Cheat

There are many ways that one can cheat in CrossFit.  It not always the obvious.  Although it’s cliche, when you cheat, you are only cheating yourself.  Here’s how:

1.) The first way is the most obvious, and that is by shaving reps, or rounds off of your workout.  Honestly, I don’t understand why anyone would do this.  I suppose that it’s born out of a competitive spirit, or a perhaps the embarrassment of coming in last place.  However, what honor is there in a victory that you haven’t earned?  By shaving reps, you are intentionally eliminating the volume of your workout, and believe it or not, the volume of each of your workouts is purposely calculated; less work, equals less results.  In addition to this, when you shave reps off of your workout, you cheat your peers.  They see you advancing, and are perplexed, or worse yet, discouraged by your false success.

2.) Another way that you can cheat is by continuously performing a movement incorrectly, even after being instructed otherwise.  Now, I’m not talking about the time that it can take to correct poor movement.  I’m talking about blatant disregard to correction.  The, “I can’t help it.  This is how I move” attitude.  Why is this cheating?  The standards are the standards for a reason.  Chances are, if you continue with poor movement patterns, you will eventually injure yourself.  Also, better movement equals more efficient workouts.  Once again, you’re cheating your results.

3.) Similar to the previous point made, not performing movements at full range of motion (ROM) when your body allows you to do so, is also cheating.  How is your half squat, and thereby inflated score, fair to the athlete beside you getting below parallel? Okay, so forget about him.  He can mind his own business; after-all, he’s still getting good workout….Well, the ROM is the ROM for good reason.  Once again, you will not get the results you desire with half of it present.

4.) The next way in which people cheat is by arriving late to class.  You rush the warm-up and jump right into a WOD ill-prepared.  Why is this cheating?  Well, first off, are you looking to burn calories and fat?  This does not occur until several minutes into your workout.  If you are shortening your workout, you are delaying this process.  More important than this, arriving late is putting you more at risk for injury.  Your warm-ups are methodically calculated.  They are designed to raise your core body temperature, stretch the primary muscle groups that you will be utilizing, prep your heart-rate and instill muscle memory for movement patterns.  You miss this, and you’re are missing a lot.  It’s showing up to a concert for only the encore performance

5.) Another way that you could cheat yourself is by not taking advantage of the coaching that is provided at our gym.  You are not a nuisance.  You are not “asking stupid questions”.  We don’t mind modifying for an injury.  If you don’t ask, you won’t receive.

6.) You’ve often heard me say, “You can’t out-train a poor diet”.  If you’re looking for results, you will get them as soon as you begin a CrossFit exercise regimen.  However, if your diet is poor (high sugar, high carb, lots of “bad” fats), you will plateau.  The results will stop.  You will never become the best version of you.

7.) A seventh way in which athletes cheat is by performing the WOD at a weight or movement standard that is too challenging for their fitness level (i.e. doing the “rx”/Performance weight, or doing pull-ups when you should be doing ring rows).  Several things happen when this occurs.  First, you put yourself at great risk for injury.  Secondly, you are NEVER going to get better because chances are that you are instilling poor movement patterns at a ROM that is not full.  Lastly, by moving slower, you decrease your power output, which will never make you better (for a great article on WHY this occurs, I advise you to read Zatsiorsky Scaling and Power by Jon Gilson at https://www.againfaster.com/blog/2012/01/13/zatsiorsky-scaling-and-power/).

8.) Another way that athletes “cheat” is by doing the WOD half-heartedly.  Sure, some exercise is better than no exercise, but you’re certainly not going to get the same results as the gal next to you that puts her all into every WOD.  And why pay 165 bucks a month to perform a half-a#%@* workout?? Jimmy Russell, maker of Wild Turkey bourbon once said, “Do one thing well and do it all the way“.  From making bourbon to working out, this couldn’t be truer.

9.) The ninth way I’ve seen athletes cheat is by constant comparison to other athletes.  This is an unrealistic goal.  You are a different athlete, with a different body, mind, and fitness background.  You are your own yardstick. You can only strive to be a better version of  the you that you were last year, last month, last week, or yesterday.

10.) The tenth, and last, way that I have noticed athletes cheat is with inconsistent effort.  You’re at the gym for two weeks, following a healthy diet, and then you take a two month hiatus…  How unfair is this to the hardworking you??!!  It’s as if you are taking all of your hard work and throwing it away.  Not to mention the mental toll that this takes on most athletes.  Get in the swing of things, and keep on swingin‘.

Dave D.

Dave D.

Diana M.

Diana M.

Bill R.

Bill R.

JR

JR

Chu and Quong

Chu and Quong 



Energy

A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit saps one’s strength“. -Proverbs 17:22

Energy…

Sometimes you have it.  Sometimes you don’t; sometimes it can be created.  Sometimes it cannot.

So many times, we know we need it, but we can’t seem to find it.

About a week ago, there was a group of us snatching in the weight room.  One after one, we were failing at attempts much lighter than our personal records.  First Bradley, then Shlee, then me, then DP, then Janice, and finally, Bianca.  Shlee was the first to lose it and bitterly denounce the lift, quitting for the day.  Before you knew it, I punched the weight rack, shortly followed by DP kicking his barbell, rocking the infamous underbite…

We discussed why it was that we were all under-performing.  I attributed it to what we had done the days before, or possibly a lack of sleep.  But, then Bianca testified that she hadn’t worked out in two days, and, well…Bradley…Bradley always sleeps plenty

What could be a possible cause to missed lift after missed lift?

ENERGY.  Especially negative energy.  One athlete missed a lift, got pissed, and then it caused a ripple effect for the next athlete.  This downtrodden, negative spirit was sucking the energy out of the room.

Today, was quit the opposite in the weight room.   Shlee hit a PR on her overhead squat, and soon after, so did I.  After much rejoicing, Janice and Bianca hit huge PR’s, later on followed by Bradley…I suppose the energy must’ve still be lurking

So often a time, the occurrences within the walls of the gym concretely reflect that which is true in life.  If we allow negativity to permeate our lives, it will sap us of our energy, and render us weak and unproductive within our environment.

Perhaps this is the real reason why there is such a thing as cheerleaders in the world (other than the uniforms)…Keep the energy high. Our attitudes affect others more than we realize…

"Though she be but little, she is fierce!"  Lookin' good, Shana!

“Though she be but little, she is fierce!” Lookin’ good, Shana!

Jess, achieved her goal of a full range of motion wall climb.  On to the next one!

Jess, achieved her goal of a full range of motion wall climb. On to the next one!

We should WOD in circles more often...

We should WOD in circles more often…

Zoe has been working hard on the Lurong Paleo Challenge, and it is showing!

Zoe has been working hard on the Lurong Paleo Challenge, and it is showing!

Josh is new to SCf and his hard work and determination is showing already!

Josh is new to SCf and his hard work and determination is showing already!

Rosa is also new to SCF.  Take the time to introduce yourself to our many new athletes.

Rosa is also new to SCF. Take the time to introduce yourself to our many new athletes.

Al is also looking good after a few weeks of hard work on the Lurong Living Paleo Challenge.

Al is also looking good after a few weeks of hard work on the Lurong Living Paleo Challenge.



Stepping Off of the Plateau

IThe Smushditi thought to myself, “You can’t write a blog about your best friend.  People will think you’re showing favoritism, being biased“. Then, I thought to myself, it IS my blog…I can write about whatever I want, and because she’s my best friend, I don’t even have to ask her permission. So, here it is

Over a month ago, Coach Bradley gathered a team for the CrossFit Team Series Online Competition.  Despite not feeling incredibly competitive, I agreed.  He was eager, and it was low pressure. Shlee was also invited to join our team.  After much coercion, she became a member of Team SCF 1 along with Adam Greenberg, Bradley and me.  She joked around and said that we should rename the team, “S%*#, We Got Shlee”.

Rewind a year plus prior to this… Shlee definitely reached what we call a “CrossFit Plateau”.  She has been doing CrossFit since 2009.  She has competed at the national and regional level both as an individual and on a team.  As the CrossFit and the gym grew and athletes changed, she was replaced on the team and became quite content with CrossFitting to stay fit and coaching her athletes at SCF.

But, I knew there was more under that tough exterior.  Once upon a time, Shlee was a competitive collegiate soccer player, and I remember what she was like in 2010 when we trained for Regionals together.  I knew that the fire of competition hadn’t completely extinguished…Well, a little fireball, ex-soccer player, ultra-competitive athlete (Janice) knew this too, and wouldn’t let Shlee rest until she joined the SCF Competitor’s program.  After about a month into this, she joined the aforementioned team.

Fast-forward to today...Team SCF 1 placed THIRD in the Northeast Region out of 116 Rx teams in The CrossFit Team Series.  We placed 37th in the WORLD out of 1,018 rx teams (https://teamseries.crossfit.com/#/).

Now, every athlete on the team played their part, but what I saw in Shlee was absolutely inspiring.  Trust me, I had fun and performed decently because I enjoyed the low-pressure environment, but Shlee…Shlee made it memorable.  When she needed to “bring it”, she always brought it.  She Pr’d in every heavy lift of the competition, at one point lifting her “one rep max” snatch FOUR times fatigued in a WOD.  Without a doubt, there was even one WOD where she was the MVP with her ninja speed handstand push-ups and deadlifts!

What can be learned from this?

Well, there’s a few things…First off, just because you’ve plateaued, doesn’t mean you need to remain there. Perhaps you just need a goal, something to which you should aspire.  Secondly, competition can teach us much about ourselves.  Many of us respond best to pressure.  The competition can be just what it takes to create the pressure to help us to reach our full potential (sign up for the competition at SCF on November 15th!).

And lastly, when it comes to athletic performance and results, it is easy to only look for satisfaction in our own output.  However, just as much gratification can be gleaned from keeping a close eye on our peer’s accomplishments and basking in these alongside them.

Thank you to my team: Adam, Bradley and Shlee for giving me the opportunity to see this.

The energy in the 6:30 class was ELECTRIC tonight!  Make sure to introduce yourself to our many new athletes.

The energy in the 6:30 class was ELECTRIC tonight! Make sure to introduce yourself to our many new athletes.

Sam just needed a little help from his friends...

Sam just needed a little help from his friends…

Good rep!

Good rep! Alicia, getting stronger by the day!

Anna, always working hard

Anna, always working hard

Coach Bradley with those stellar butterfly pull-ups...

Coach Bradley will be in a team competition at CrossFit Milford this weekend with Janice, Adam and Bianca.  It is Saturday and Sunday.  Stop by and cheerlead!

Ashley B, getting in wedding shape!

Ashley B, getting in wedding shape!

Jess H., always improving!

Jess H., always improving!

Nice rack, Eliza!  That's how you catch a clean...

Nice rack, Eliza! That’s how you catch a clean.