Train Warm

I’ve made posts on this topic before, but it’s time for another one.  Let’s get down to the nitty gritty about your pre-WOD warm-up!

The term “warm-up” is never as appropriate as when it’s absolutely cold, wet, miserable weather (Ah, life on the West Coast!) and you feel like your bones are going to break with every step you take.  Bring back memories from this past winter in the gym?  I’m personally not such a fan of the winter temperatures, and I hate being cold.  And although Spring is officially here now, the temps are still lower, and the damp can feel just as bad as the cold.  But the only thing that allows a person to deal with that and get WOD ready is by having a great pre-workout warm-up routine.  It never hurts to have several different warm-up programs that you utilize, as they come in quite handy when it’s cold.

I don’t know how it is for you, but some days when it’s damp or cold out, the weights can feel so much heavier and more awkward for me.  And I’ve learned that, on those days when you feel kinda bone-crampy as a result, you should take extra time to prep your body.  It’s as simple as that.  The problem for many people is that they don’t have an appropriate pre-class warm-up, or ANY warm-up for that matter.  I have seen it countless times; people rush in to the gym in the dead of winter or on a damp chilly day, toss around a PVC pipe for a couple seconds, chat with friends, and then jump right into the class.  This is a bad thing.  Realistically, even when the weather is warm, it’s bad form not to take some time to get loose and warm before you start your workout.

A proper warm-up consists of so much more than just lunging around for 5-minutes and running through a handful of static stretches.  A lot of people don’t like to warm-up (me included) because it’s 1) boring and 2) they don’t really know HOW to without much direction.  I’ll just say this: a good, progressive warm-up routine prepares you both physically and mentally for the workout. I think the key word here is “progressive.”

“Progressive,” means proceeding movement by movement, continuing from one part of a series to the next.  When warming up, the progression should move from easy to difficult so that it blends into your workout.  If you look around the gym, you’ll see amongst our more heavy duty athletes that their warm-up/preparation period evolves from a very simple series of exercises designed to help them loosen up, to a much more complex program of  movements that are often part of the upcoming WOD.  Initially, in your first few times,  this kind of warm up would feel a lot like THE workout.  Yet over time, you will find that this warm-up will serve to increase your fitness level, and this increased fitness level will in turn serve to improve your warm-up.

Take for example the traditional “CrossFit Warmup” that we have written on the white board every day.  Doing all those movements might seem silly, and boring, and it takes awhile.  But it likely feels that way only because you’ve been doing that every day for months.  I’m sure you found it to be a hard warm-up, and a good skill developer, when you first started CrossFit.  If it’s too easy for you now, perhaps mix things up a bit.  Add some weight to your overhead squat, for example, by using a bar instead of a PVC pipe.  Or work on your butterfly or chest-to-bar pullups instead of doing the 10 regular pullups. Better yet, take the time to focus on one of your “goats”!  Also plan to leave yourself enough time after that to warm up the specific parts of your body that will be used in that day’s workout.  Doing Deadlifts?  Make sure you warm up those back muscles and that posterior chain.  Doing Presses?  Pay attention to making sure your shoulders are limber and ready to go. All this moving about will increase heart rate, literally warm up the body temperature, and prep you for the workout.

The warm up is part of the workout, not something separate from it!  So, don’t neglect this integral part of your daily WOD, and your fitness level will surely improve.

Today’s Workout

Buy-in: 30 perfect squat snatches (pvc or bar only)

WOD: The Gymnast’s Routine

Take 30 minutes of class time and work through progressions of the following exercises:

  • handstand pushups – 30 reps
  • pistol squats – 30 total reps
  • ring dips – 20 EASY reps
  • ring rows (false grip) – 30 reps
  • Lsit hold – accumulate 60 – 120 sec

This workout is designed to focus on accuracy and control of movement… don’t turn it into a metcon!

Cash-Out: If not doing the Sectionals workout tomorrow, 2 min max wallballs.  If doing the wod, 50 wallballs as unbroken as possible.


More Posts

Summer Indulgence

Fresh local Strawberries are now available. These delicious little berries are rich in polyphenols which are known for their antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-aging benefits. Here

It’s a Fight Gone, Whatt?

Good… I hope! Wod tips: Choosing a different starting position can affect your score! We’ve found that starting on the row, or starting on box