Whole Life Challenge

BMI Test: Sept 17
Fall Challenge: Sept 19 – Nov 13
Kick-Off Meeting: Thur, Sept 17, 7:45PM  &  Sat, Sept 19, 11AM

Register for the BMI Test: CLICK HERE
Register for the Fall Whole Life Challenge: CLICK HERE
Early Registration Ends Aug 31, After that the price increases.

Who is it For?

Anyone that wants to improve their health and lifestyle. Non-members are welcome to join the online team as well, get your family and friends involved!

What is It and Does it Work?

The Whole Life Challenge is a 56-day, habit-changing, community-building game
that helps you live a happier, healthier life by playing for points with friends and family
to make small daily changes in nutrition, training, mobility, sleep, goal setting, perspective, and more. You will spend a minute or two each day logging your results for the previous day. There will be private, team, and global leaderboards. At the end of the 56 days, we will compare workout results, body measurements, and overall lifestyle and happiness. The goal is to make some small, but vital, improvements in the way you live, that will stay with you long after the challenge has ended!

Ask some of our members that have participated before if they liked it. Most of them have seen some great results in their health, physique, and lifestyle. After trying a variety of nutrition challenges and lifestyle challenges, this is the one we have stuck with for the past two years!

For a complete break down on the challenge, visit their page!

How Do I Participate?

Sign up (link above, make sure you join CrossFit Wylie’s Team), read the rules, and follow the instructions. The only thing we require is that you commit to completing the challenge, regardless of how well you are scoring! Prior to the challenge we will host a Q&A regarding nutrition and the rules of the challenge.

What’s with the (BMI) Hydrostatic Body Test?

Like past challenges, we will also be hosting a hydrostatic body test team, that will take a before measurement of your bodyfat percentage. The have a customized, air conditioned truck with their equipment on board. They come to CrossFit Wylie, making it very easy. It’s one of the quickest and most accurate ways to test your body mass index (body fat). They also come back at the end of the challenge so we can see the real results, in muscle gains and fat loss. A far superior indicator of progress than monitoring weight. It’s not required but is highly recommended, especially if you have never done it.

How to Scale Your CrossFit Workouts

It is not hard to find advice about anything these days. We are inundated with lists, articles, instagrams, etc. telling us what to do and how to do it. This free, open-source information can be a great tool as we develop our lifestyles, training, and nutrition. So much so, that it was the basis of the idea for CrossFit from the beginning; an open source community for solving the problem of how people should train and eat to reach their genetic potential (see the CrossFit Journal as an example). The problem, however, with any open source information system, is that you have to filter the nonsense from the useful.

As coaches we are here to do that for you. I love it when someone sends me something and asks my opinion. Sometimes it is just wrong, and sometimes I learn something myself. So keep asking your questions and we will keep learning together!

Today we are talking about scaling. This is something I have written a few articles about. I tried to go back and find one of those articles and quickly realized it is hard to find stuff from two years ago since we have made over 1,000 posts to our website! So, I am going to work on finding all of our good articles from the past and compile a list on a new “Articles” page categorized by training, nutrition, etc. I will let you know when that gets done. On to today’s topic…


The Most Comprehensive Guide to Scaling CrossFit Workouts, Ever.

Internet experts will say everything from, “If you aren’t moving as fast as the fastest person, you haven’t scaled enough.” To “never scale weight if you want to get stronger.” Obviously it is more complicated, and there is a middle ground.

The Beauty of CrossFit Metcons

One of the great things about CrossFit is that to an extent, the workouts auto-scale, auto-adjust, auto-modify, based on the athletes abilities. For a simple example, lets look at Fran. 45 Thrusters & 45 Pullups For Time at 95/65, a weight that’s light for some and heavy for some.

A strong athlete that is proficient at pullups and has good endurance may complete the entire workout in 2-3 minutes and will view the workout as a sprint, pushing for maximum intensity, testing grit and the ability to keep going when the burn tells them to rest. This will test and improve endurance and conditioning much more than strength.

A weaker athlete that has a more difficult time with pullups, or struggles with multiple reps at the prescribed weight, will obviously have to rest more and have a slower time. So, is this a bad thing or a problem? Should they scale and modify until they can do the workout in 3 minutes or less? Anyone that’s ever done Fran, knows that it doesn’t matter if it takes 2 minutes or 10 minutes, it’s a beat down and a lung burner. The challenge and stimulation however, may vary based on the athlete’s strengths and weaknesses. For some, the challenge may be that the weight is heavy and for others it may be purely aerobic. If the weight is difficult, that stimulus will make you stronger. If you are breathing hard, that stimulus will make your lungs better.

Let’s simplify it. Our workouts will attack your weaknesses. Your job is to simply do the best you can, and work on those weaknesses in your training via strength work, skill work, and aerobic conditioning. The point is, heavy is not a bad thing. If you are moving correctly, it doesn’t matter how heavy it is, the odds of injury are very low. However, if you are moving incorrectly, it doesn’t matter how light it is, the odds of injury are increased.

Making Good Decisions

So heavy is not necessarily bad, but there will always be such a thing as too heavy, or too difficult. So let’s talk about how you know when to pull the plug on your Rx dreams.

The Point of the Workout
Every workout is designed to create a certain stimulus and the first thing you need to do is try to figure out what is. Some workouts are low in reps and designed to push intensity with heavy loads, others are designed to push intensity with fairly easy movements at high volume. This should be a good starting point for deciding if Rx is a good idea or not.

‘For Time’ Vs ‘AMRAP’
Another guideline when deciding how/if to scale is to look at the style of workout. Workouts that are ‘For Time’ require a specific number of reps to be completed, typically within a time cap. You should be more cautious in these situations because the fact that the clock will continue to tick until you struggle through every last rep or hit the time cap makes it more likely that you will push past usefull intensity and into the danger zone. Your goal should be to finish under the cap, moving quickly and continuously with proper form. Nothing more.

AMRAP workouts are the opposite. It simply requires you to complete as many reps as possible in the time available. These workouts, specifically if they are designed to be short and heavy (see above), are a better opportunity to test the waters of heavier loads or more advanced gymnastics. By challenging yourself with difficult movements, you will still be working hard, but the clock will be more likely to save you from doing too many reps.

How to Scale
So now we’ve covered when to scale, but how should you scale? Let’s talk about weighted movements first… Most workouts are written to be in a percentage range for the strongest athletes and maybe a slightly higher percentage for athletes needing to get stronger. Refer to your coaches regarding what a decent percentage for a given workout may be.

I’d love to share a simple spreadsheet listing rep ranges and percentages with you, but it varies greatly depending on the what the movement is, what other movements are involved, how long the workout is, AMRAP vs Time, your technical proficiency, etc. Let’s simplify it more than that. Break it down, and try to decide whether it should be light, medium, heavy. From there you can find a weight range, try a few reps and pick a starting weight.

For the gymnastic or bodyweight movements, you need variety in modifications. Banded pullups are a great tool, but don’t get stuck doing the same thing every time. Change the amount of bands based on the workout. High reps: use more assistance and work on doing big sets. Low reps: go with less assistance and do a couple at a time. Occasionally try ring-rows, or jumping pullups, or even negatives. A good rule of thumb for gymnastic movements is to see what it looks like for the better athletes. If the fastest Rx athlete is doing 2 or 3 pullups at a time, the person scaling with a superband and doing sets of 15 probably isn’t receiving the right stimulus or adaptation. As I mentioned in the Fran example, if a movement is difficult for you, it’s suppose to be. The struggle is what makes you better.

If your assisted movement is easier for you than the prescribed movement is for the better athletes, it may be too easy. And it goes the other way as well, if you are doing one at a time with assistance or scaled weight, and the Rx athletes are doing sets of 20, it may be time for change.

New to CrossFit?
So you’re new and feel like you just read something in a foreign language? Take a breath, I’m going to keep it real simple for you… Make every movement easy. If you are new, every movement you do in a metcon should be easy by itself. That light barbell movement or easy ring row is plenty challenging as they are combined with other movements and high reps. As you and your body adapts to the challenge you will be able to increase the challenge of the workouts, but it let it come to you, don’t force it. Have fun and challenge yourself to learn proper technique and full range of motion before increasing the weight or difficulty.

Learning from Mistakes
We all bite off more than we chew at times, it happens. When this happens, you typically notice that the wheels are falling off pretty quickly. Don’t hesitate to make a change. Then make a mental note for the future.

Try to make small steps forward, always progressing. And as always, engage your coaches if you are not sure about scaling options.

Coach Chris Coker

 

14.3 Strategy & Tips (For the Regular Joe)

All over the internet coaches (some elite and some not so much) are giving their free advice on how to kill each Open workout and make it to regionals. The problem is that they are game planning for the top 5%, regional level athletes. So the 170,000 other people doing the open are left to figure it out on their own. For this reason I’m going focus on helping the 95 percenters, and maybe a few top athletes as well.

14.3… Deadlifts & Box Jumps Step-Ups

  1. See what I did there… Unless you plan on making it past the 4th round (25 reps at 275/185), there is no reason to execute bounding box jumps. Unless you have pogo sticks for legs and can bound very easily and comfortably, I suggest using step-ups the entire time. Chances are the 275/185 (or maybe even the 225/155) will be very heavy for you. If this is the case, the goal is to get there quickly, giving you time to crank out as many reps as possible, but also to conserve as much energy as you can on your way there. We’ve tested it and step ups will only be a few seconds slower per set, but will save a ton of energy.
  2. Break up the deadlifts early. For even the average athlete, 185/135 won’t be a big deal. Most of you could do 15 reps unbroken, but don’t. Again we are trying to move quick but saving energy is just as important. Break the sets into 8/7 or 5/5/5 and keep the back fresh. Do your best however to not go to singles unless it’s necessary. Going from a dead stop is much more difficult than using your body’s natural stretch reflex and the rebound of the bar. Stay tight and try to complete multiple touch & go sets for as long as possible.
  3. Quick transitions are important, no mistakes. Know what your weight changes will be and don’t screw it up. Be prepared and have your equipment ready. Never push the weight onto the bar, it’s so much easier to stand inside (facing the end of the bar) and pull the weight onto the bar. No collars. You don’t need collars for deadlifts and the rules don’t require them.
  4. Equipment. No weightlifting shoes! Hopefully most of you know this, but in case you are really new, weightlifting shoes are for squatting and squatting only. When dead lifting you want the flattest shoes you own. But since we are box jumping stepping on a box, you’ll want something light as well. Also, a belt is recommended. I like the velcro because it’s easy to loosen for the step-ups.
  5. Technique and knowing when to stop. I shouldn’t have to say this but I will. If you aren’t getting paid to CrossFit (and I know you aren’t), there is no reason to look like a dog taking a crap. Waking up tomorrow injury free is way more important than beating your buddy on a workout. Know when to drop the bar, and know when to walk away from the workout altogether. Don’t be an ass.
  6. Nutrition. Your performance (output) is largely determined by your hydration and nutrition (input). Start hydrating in large amounts up to 5 hours early. Eat well throughout the day and try to get some extra carbs a couple hours before.

There you go, a little strategy and some common sense. Most of all, have fun. It doesn’t matter if you are Rich Froning or last on the leader board, if you aren’t having fun, what’s the point?!

If you have any other questions feel free to ask…

Guide to Your First Weightlifting Meet

If you are preparing for your first weightlifting meet, this quick guide is here to help you get through it! Even if this isn’t your first meet you may learn a little…

First let me congratulate you on signing up! It takes a lot of nerve to put yourself out there, and for that we are proud of you. Below we break down some things you need to know. Of course you need to read the rules also!

What to Bring

Any equipment (shoes, wraps, belts, etc.) you usually use while performing the lifts. Fuel (snacks, fluids, etc.).

Kilograms

Before we can get too far we have to make sure you know your kilos. If you tell the table you are going to attempt 155, they assume you are talking kg. Most places won’t even correct you… they will just load 341 LBS and let you stand there looking like a noob. At our meets we will at least give you a courtesy “in kilos?!” question, but please don’t let it come to that. There are free conversion apps and if all else fails, bust out the calculator. The conversion is 1kg = 2.2lb.

Weight Classes

Unlike CrossFit, weightlifting is broken into weight classes. Of course all of the classes are in kilos (see above). You should receive a starting list or schedule that will tell you what group you are in and when your group weighs in. If you weigh in heavier than your weight class, you get bumped into the next weight class. For local (small) meets, I DON’T recommend cutting more than 2-3% of body weight to reach a certain weight class, but if you are only 1-2 kilos over, that’s nothing a few days of “clean” eating can’t resolve. But you don’t want to miss weight by a half kilo! I recommend you weigh yourself each morning and then again throughout the day, particularly at the time of day you will eventually be weighing in. This way you know what you typically weigh in the morning and how much you gain throughout the day. The day of the meet, you weigh yourself in the morning, and you know what to expect come the important weigh in. Of course, if you are in the middle of your weight class, eat.

When the day comes, you want to weigh in as soon as your weigh-in opens. This way you have time to cut a little weight if you are a little heavy. If everything goes well, you are all set, and you have more time to hydrate, get a snack, get acclimated with your surroundings, and relax.

The Course of Competition

The entire group will Snatch, take a short break, then Clean & Jerk. You get three attempts at each. Your best Snatch and best C&J will be added to get your total. Each group will start with the lowest declared opening Snatch. After each lift the next highest declared weight will be called to the platform, this will continue until every lifter has taken their three attempts. Each lifter gets 1 minutes (60 seconds) to make their attempt. If a lifter follows themselves, either because they missed or because there is no one else, they get 2 minutes (120 seconds). The clock does not start until the bar is loaded and ready. If there is a weight change the clock will stop until the change is complete.

There will be a table where all weight declarations need to be made. There will be three judges. For a good lift you need a majority decision (2 out of 3).

Selecting Weights

When you weigh in you will declare your opening weights for the Snatch and the Clean Jerk. After you declare your weight you can make two changes to your selection. Once your weight is on the bar it can not be lightened. If a lifter misses, they can re-attempt the same weight, or request to go heavier.  If a lifter makes their lift, their next lift will automatically be set to 1kg more than the previous lift until they declare their next weight.

You should have your game plan written out (in kilos) before you arrive. This plan should include warm-up attempts, opening weights, and subsequent attempts.

Opening Weights
With only three attempts, the last thing you want to do is bomb out (0 for 3). A lifter’s minimum (opening weight) is more important than their max. A minimum is the highest amount of weight a lifter can hit nearly every time (4 out of 5) they attempt it.

For beginners or first time competitors, the opening weight should be fairly conservative. Percentages will vary based on experience and consistency, but for beginners it is  85%-90% of their 1RM. Experienced lifters can plan on opening at a higher percentage 92-94%, and adjust their plan based on how they feel in warm-ups.

Subsequent Weight Selections
After you make your first attempt (see what I did there), the next attempt should be a 2-5kg (5-10lb) increase. A lot of information is available out there about what your jumps should be, but they are all opinions. Here’s my suggestion:
New Lifters                                     Experienced Lifters
Attempt 1: 85-90%                       Attempt 1: 92-94% 
Attempt 2: 90-95%                      Attempt 2: 95-98%
Attempt 3: 95-101%                    Attempt 3: 99-101%
The variance (85-90) gives some adjustment room based on how your training has been going, how your warm-ups go, what your first lift felt like, etc.

Misses
It’s most likely going to happen. Few athletes go 6 for 6. When it does happen, do NOT go to your next planned weight. Keep that ego in check and repeat your attempt.

There are a few rare reasons to go up in weight after a miss:
1) You want more time to rest and get your head right. Going up 1kg may put you a few more lifters down the list, or at minimum, pause the clock for a few seconds while the weight is changed.
2) You have one C&J remaining and you need a certain weight to win, medal, etc.
3) You already have it won and are going for a record, PR, whatever.
There are probably some other reasons to go up that I can’t think of, but you get the point.

Warm-Ups

The first thing to do before you start warming up is figure out how many lifts into the session you will take your first attempt. You’re not going to get it perfectly right, and that’s fine.

Based on everyone’s openers you can estimate roughly how much time you have until your first attempt. Figure about 1 min per lift. If someone is opening 10 or more kg below your weight, you can assume they will make all three of their attempts before you make your first.

The next step is to write down your warm-ups, based on attempts. You should hit your opener or at least 95% of your opener during warm-ups.

Here is a mock warm-up based on opening at 90kg in the snatch:
3 lifts out (3 min) 1@90kg (100% of opener and last warm up lift)
6 lifts out (6 min) 1@85kg (95%)
9 lifts out (9 min) 1@80kg (85-90%)
12 lifts out (12 min) 1@70kg (75-80%)
15 lifts out (15 min) 1@60kg (65-70%)
18 lifts out (18 min) 2@50kg (50-60% of opener)
21 lifts out (21 min) empty bar drills
24 lifts out (24 min) general mobility and warmup

After the snatch, have a light snack and hydrate, and perform the same process for the clean & jerk, with the following changes to your warm-up:
1) Instead of working up to your opener, work up to about 95% of your opener.
2) Take fewer lifts, and your last 3-4 lifts should include more rest between lifts, since the clean & jerk is more taxing.

Here’s a mock based on opening the C&J at 120kg.
4 lifts out (4 min) 1@115kg (95-97% of opener and last warm up lift)
8 lifts out (8 min) 1@110kg (90-92%)

12 lifts out (12 min) 1@100kg (80-85%)
15 lifts out (15 min) 1@90kg (70-75%)
18 lifts out (18 min) 1@70kg (55-60% of opener)
21 lifts out (21 min) empty bar drills

Competition Lifts

Once your called and the bar is loaded you will have one minute (unless you are following yourself). You should have chalked up while the lifter before you was going.

Now you are on the platform, DO NOT RUSH. One minute is longer than it sounds. Just move like you would normally during training. A buzzer will sound at the 30 second mark usually or at minimum you will be able to see timer. When you approach the bar find your focal point across the room. Setup to the bar like normal and DO NOT RUSH.

Boom, you’ve made your first lift! HOLD, HOLD, HOLD! Do NOT drop the bar until the head judge tells you too, and drop it in front of you. Lowering the bar before signaled to or dropping it behind you will result in a NO lift! Horrible way to miss a lift! Now go straight to the marshals and declare the weight of your next lift.

KEY RULES
1) No press outs. This is a big one for CrossFitters. You must get the bar locked out in one fluid motion, if you have to stop and press it out, it’s a no lift.
2) Drop the bar in front of you, only after the signal.
3) If your knee touches the platform, or your elbow touches your knee, no lift.
4) No manipulating the bar oscillation. English? This means you can’t bounce the bar up before your jerk dip/drive, another popular one among some CrossFitters.
5) Slam the bar after a big lift! It’s not a rule but it should be. It’s cool, it feels good, and it is NOT against the rules. If anyone tells you otherwise, tell them to shove it.

CrossFit Wylie Club Championship

2016 Leaderboard

Heats

Members Only, Two Week Competition to Test our Skills, Celebrate our Community, and Crown the Fittest of CrossFit Wylie

When: Two Friday Nights at 6PM, December 2nd & 16th

If you can’t make it on Friday, the events must be completed and results submitted by the following Tuesday. We will have a very limited schedule these event days, so if you like your Friday workouts, Sign Up!

Door Prizes!

-Exclusive Club Championship Shirt, ONLY available to participants!
-A lot of door prizes such as supplements, shirts, decals, patches, tumblers, shakers, and more!

Price: $40 per Athlete

Who: EVERYONE should sign up for this! You will do things you never thought possible, learn what you need to work on the most, create more great friendships, and improve all around!

Divisions:
Rx
Compete with the best athletes in the gym and push yourself to another level! This is a good choice if you can Rx almost all of the daily workouts.

Masters (Ages 40+)
Events scaled slightly. Great for Athletes that meet the age requirement and do most workouts Rx or at least the bodyweight movements.

Scaled
If you would like to participate but aren’t ready for Rx. The workouts will be scaled by our coaches to match your ability level.

(Let us know if you aren’t sure which and we will help you decide.)

Register:

SIGN UP NOW

Paleo Recipes by Amanda Pucket

Avocado, Bacon, Tomato and Egg Salad

Ingredients:

* 2 boiled eggs, chopped into chunks
* 1 large avocado, slightly smashed
* 1 medium-sized tomato, chopped into chunks
* Juice from one lemon wedge
* 2-4 cooked pieces of bacon, crumbled
* Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Mix all ingredients together, stirring not too much, but just enough to make some of the avocado and egg into mush. Hint: Mix avocados first, then “fold in” other ingredients. This is amazing….trust me.

Tips:

* This makes a great side dish to any type of grilled protein.
* Top over a turkey burger.
* Grill chicken, dice, mix into the salad.
* Double it! It’s that good!

Bacon Wrapped Chicken stuffed with Jalapeño

* 4 Organic All-Natural Chicken breast
* 2 Jalapeños
* 4 Organic Uncured No-Nitrate Bacon
* Seasoning of your choice (no MSGs = horrible for you)

Directions:

  1. Pound out chicken breast to about 1/2 inch thickness. Sprouts actually sells thin chicken breast. Split large/thick breasts in half.
  2. Slice and remove seeds from jalapeño.
  3. Sprinkle with seasoning on both sides. Use what you have, we use BBQ (no MSGs).
  4. Place jalapeño in the middle of the chicken breast. Roll.
  5. Wrap a piece of bacon around the rolled chicken breast stuffed with the jalapeño. Use a toothpick to hold bacon and chicken together.
  6. Grill until done. Enjoy!