I met with Nick yesterday for our weekly programming meeting. We started talking about expectations in FitCamp and the importance of prescribed (Rx) weights for workouts. We also discussed who should be using Rx and who should be using non-Rx and how to properly determine the scaling (making easier/harder) for each member in class. One thing we realized was that not all of us may have a clear picture of how to properly choose weights and scale exercises while staying safe and still getting the most from the workouts. After some brainstorming we came up with the following 5 step progression for new and existing members. This progression is not absolute and where you start may change depending on the exercise or workout. However it should give you a good idea of how to think about the workouts and ultimately see the best results.
(This progression should be used for all movements we do in FitCamp on an individual basis based upon your abilities, strengths and weaknesses. If we do an exercise in class that you struggle with then start with step 1 and build up over time to step 4 or 5. For the exercises you excel at then go as close to step 4/5 as you can for the workouts).
Step 1: Master the Movement – using bodyweight or PVC practice the movement during the workouts so you can achieve full range of motion with proper form. This may require intense flexibility work and focus over a few weeks for some moves or some 1-on-1 time before or after class. Use PVC during the workouts and focus on FORM and execution of the movement, intensity for this movement will come later. Once you can demonstrate full range with form gradually increase loads in step 2.
Step 2: Light Load – Jump up to a black, blue or green body bar and now become proficient at the movement with a light load/weight. Use this weight for a week or two and still focus on form, not intensity. After you have been “approved” to ramp up the weight then go to an olympic bar for another week or two. This 2-4 week period will give you adequate time to practice the movement and drill in the form for the next step. Make sure to ask for help during class if you are not sure if you are doing the movement corectly before moving on to the next step.
Step 3: Under Prescribed – At this pont you have built a firm foundation for adding in more weight and now is where will start feeling the intensity of the movements much more. Start by adding 5-10 lbs. to a lifting exercise each time you see it in class until you can move on to step 4. If your form starts to “go” then adjust the weight back down until you can re-enforce proper form and attempt the higher weights again. Progress is the key to success here so always keep yourself trying new variations and increasing difficulty. Challenge yourself and try new things, this is how you will get stronger, healthier and fitter.
Step 4: Prescribed (Rx) – It is not essential to use prescribed weights for any of the workouts we do in FitCamp in order to elicit a positive physical response. Rx weights are only guidelines and should be used only after successfully demonstrating competeance in steps 1-3. With any movement, exercise or workout there are going to be Rx standards used to measure progress and ensure adequate intensity for the workout. As you get stronger and more confident with certain movements then start using Rx weights during the workouts. Now is when you will start seeing your greatest gains.
Step 5: Over-Prescribed (Rx+) – There are a few rare cases where over-Rx weights would be used in a workout as a way to continue to build strength. When you are crushing the Rx workouts then using over Rx would be a great strategy for improving times for Rx workouts.
OPT – Sub 7min “Helen”
L-sit: 4 x 30 seconds (go for Max L-sit PR on parallettes)
“Double Pyramid Helen” – (2010 CrossFit Games, fastest times, Men: Graham Holmberg 16:59, Women: Annie Thorisdottir 17:53)
63 KB Swings (53/36)
Post times (and thoughts) to comments.