Sep 29, 2013

October Programming Notes

Ladies and Gentlemen,

We will be introducing an optional Strength WOD variation to the normal IMCF programming main WOD for the next 5 weeks. Ask that you take a minute to digest the concept and decide if taking part is for you and fits your goals/needs.

IMCF programs its workouts for what Crossfit calls "General Physical Preparedness" or GPP.  What we are looking for is balanced development across all the 10 physical skills and to build work capacity across broad modal (Weightlifting, Gymnastics and Monostructural Cardio) and time domains. The last month has done a great job of pushing the intensity and providing exposure to many different exercises, leaving most of us pretty beat up and sore at the end of the week knowing we worked hard!  This will continue with the GPP WODs, so not everyone needs or is ready for additional Strength work. The main goal in Crossfit and at IMCF is to push the level of intensity while being consistent in proper mechanics on the main WOD.  If you hold back or are unable to push the pace on the main WOD, then additional strength work might make you stronger, but could deplete your GPP, so balance is key.

For the next 5 weeks, there will be an optional strength WOD provided in addition to the normal GPP WOD. This work can be done before or after the main WOD or even at a different point in the day, say lunch or after work. The Specific Strength work is coupled with WODs in such a way that you should not be overly taxed for the WOD or the following ones throughout the week. Don't misinterpret that to say you won't be sore and feel beat up at the end of the week (that is still the goal), I just mean that won't degrade your ability to do the GPP WODs. If you need to take a lifting day off, don't hesitate to do so...listen to your body, and only push as hard as you feel is beneficial.

This concept generally came from a few of Crossfit's known programmers/games athletes and the CF journal article "Strong Medicine." We ran a similar 6 week program in Nov-Dec of last year and most athletes gained strength and lowered some of their Benchmark 'Girl' WODs. After a few YEARS of GPP some athletes plateau or even drop back from their PRs as they no longer make gains because their bodies have adapted needing something else to add in an extra stimulus. When this happens, accessory work and specific focus on  can help athletes break that plateau and make gains again.

For more on this concept, please don't hesitate to ask, either in person with a trainer or on the blog. There is a lot of information out there and some athletes/trainers have found different variations that work for them, so this is not a one size fits all solution, but one way that has worked for some athletes allowing them to build strength while keeping GPP.

- Scott

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