Crossfit - How Often?
I've been wanting to try crossfit for a while now and am going to attend a free intro workout tomorrow. Primary reason I haven't tried it yet, beside the fact that I know it will kill me physically (I'm not in horrible shape but not in great shape either) is that it is expensive. The 2 times per week plan is doable. The 3 times per week plan would be likely over the edge, cost-wise for me. I could do it, but...
How often to do you guys go?
For what it's worth -
I did my first Crossfit workout today. The "Baseline" WOD. It absolutely kicked my behind. I blogged about it, in case any other 40-something non-fitness buff is thinking about punishing themself with Crossfit : )
[url=http://www.lowcarblearning.com/2012/05/i-survived-my-first-crossfit-wod-baseline/]I Survived My First Crossfit WOD – “Baseline” | Low Carb Learning[/url]
[url=http://www.lowcarblearning.com]Low Carb Learning[/url]
When I first started, I had a 20-class pass and went 2-3 times a week. I couldn't imagine doing 5-6 Crossfit workouts a week. Now I have a monthly membership and go 5 times a week, sometimes even 6 if the WODs are programmed well enough that I don't overwork myself. Our gym does a good job of programming workouts that go together well (e.g. something insane like Angie is followed by something chill like strength work on back squats the next day).
Just play it by ear, if you feel weak/unwell, then you are doing too much....
Do they offer an introductory program of some kind (on-ramp/fundamentals/elements)? I'd be wary of any CF gym that would throw you into a WOD your first day there if you're not someone who's already been working out quite a bit. Also, please check out the credentials of the coaches at the box--you want people who know what they're doing beyond just a level one cert, especially whoever is planning the programming.
I love Crossfit and do it three days a week (and I'm planning on adding a straight-up lifting day to that soon). I go to an awesome gym, but there's a lot of variation. Do your research and build up gradually.
This affiliate requires everyone to go to a Fundamentals class before doing any WODs.
I live on Oahu and crossfit Oahu actually offers free classes on Tuesday nights and Saturday morning that you can attend as many times as you want. They also offer specialized strength training classes as well for 20 dollars a piece. An unlimited membership here which gets into three different gyms on different ends of the island is 180 bucks and you still have to pay for the additional classes. Personally, I like to employ crossfit into my strength training routine once or twice a week but I do not follow the WOD system. You can find sources of for bodyweight circuit routines that will totally kick your ass, depends on your goals though. Are you concerned with fat loss? Hitting personal recors on a deadlift? Improving sports performance? People say crossift does it all but there is plenty of research againts that argument.
I am not an athlete or an experienced fitness person. I lost about 65 pounds last year on LCHF (for the most part following PB-style eating, I just didn't know it at the time). Even though I've been overweight since the age of 10, once *most* of the fat was gone (I still have another 10 to 15lbs to lose) it became apparent that I actually am gifted with a great 'frame' - strong, big quads, etc. and good proportional upper-body. I still have some flab (hidden by clothes). The weight loss has been 100% due to diet, not working out. I've done cardio and walking, etc., but mainly just 'staying active'. Problem is for me....once I lost the weight I wanted to go the next step and become toned. Walking and just staying active just didn't provide that.
I've tried a number of approaches but just can't stick with any one of them, and quite honestly, don't totally trust them. I tried PB fitness but I just don't see that resulting in the level of fitness I'm looking to achieve. I could be wrong, but I don't want to spend months trying to find out. I tried weightlifting on my own using the Stronglifts approach but no matter how hard I tried/how many videos I watched to understand the proper form, my body just couldn't do a back-squat properly due to lack of flexibility or, for all I know, something I'm doing wrong. So I want to try CrossFit for two reasons:
1. The highly motivating group atmosphere
I have tried sustaining intense workouts on my own both at the local globo-gym and just in my backyard, etc., but I just don't have that level of motivation. I can muster it once in a while but not consistently.
2. While the much higher cost of a Crossfit membership sucks, if the coaches there are as advertised then I expect excellent, proactive instruction on proper form, etc. I'm sure I'll get a lot of that in the Fundamentals class. If I don't, then I'll just go back to doing my 'whatever I feel like' "workouts" that I've been doing, with minimal success. And just be content with not being fat anymore.
Incidentally, the costs of my local box: $150 for just the fundamentals classes, (which I think is way too high, from a purely business standpoint...) and then $145 for 3x a week ($125 for 2x). Pricey, but I don't see an alternative that will work for me right now, given my goal. I've tried gyms and wound up just doing walking on the treadmill, all the while wanting to do 'chronic cardio' instead on an elliptical but resisted. Also tried weightlifting but just was not motivated enough to sustain it and, perhaps a big factor in that lack of motivation - I knew some of the lifts were just being performed properly. I could feel that it just was not right.
So we'll see how it goes. I can see that CrossFit is no magic panacea - half the people there I noticed did not have 'ideal' bodies, to say the least (including one of the lead trainers, and have you seen Greg Glassman? Beer gut!)...but I want to give it a try and want to push myself and not get bored doing the same routine and I think the group atmosphere there will do it. This affiliate does not follow the crossfit.com WOD - they have their own they post daily. Also, I recall them saying they do the same WOD 2 days consecutively, to encourage/enforce rest days.
What is your goal? Get lean? Get Strong? Look good naked? Just know that in the beginning you can training any system and see results (just getting moving) but after a while you will want to define your objective so you do not try to train both explosive strength and endurance. Training both systems makes them both suffer at a high level.
2 X a week to start is my suggestion.
My goals are to:
1. Get Lean
2. Get Strong
3. Look good naked.
I'm in better shape than I probably made it sound, as I've been 'moving slowly' and doing some sprinting for the last year+ now. I just do whatever I feel like that particular moment, which sounds great and has made an overall improvement I'm sure in general health, but I'm definitely at a plateau in that regard and feel I need something to 'up the bar' to progress.
For example - a couple of weeks ago I ran my first 5k with my daughter (for the 'Girls On the Run' program) and we came in at a very respectable time. But without the 'forced' motivation I would never just go to a track and run for distance, or sprint regularly, or lift weights regularly. We're all just not that self-motivated I guess....