Crossfit Hillsdale Blogposts

Benchmarks Done Right

November 14, 2017

I get as amped up as the next CrossFitter when it comes to doing benchmarks. I look up my old time. I have to go pee ten seconds before the workout. I check the room to see who is going to be my closest competitor.

I also, given the wisdom of experience, remind myself to not let my form turn into garbage. If I am uncertain about the weights, I do a few reps BEFORE the workout and see if I can handle it. If I don’t know the movements well, I take a few minutes before the workout and watch someone more skilled than me do them.

What I’m trying to get at here is that these are both valid modes. Yes, be competitive. Yes, be careful. You can do both. They need not be in conflict. I tend to err more on the side of caution but I know I have learned a ton from people who err more on the side of throwing caution into a hurricane.

Bring the competition. Bring the conscientious.

Intro to CrossFit Series

October 14, 2017

Are you interested in learning CrossFit but intimidated by the idea of being a beginner in a regular CrossFit class? If so, you should try out our upcoming intro to CrossFit series. We are running a limited class size (maximum 10 people) class on Tuesdays and Thursdays in November and December from 9AM-10AM.

Students will be introduced to:

Basic bodyweight movements: The squat, sit up, push up and pull up.
Basic barbell movements: The deadlift, back squat, shoulder press and power clean.
Basic motions: jump rope, wall ball and KB swing.
Mobility and stretching: how to warmup, increase range of motion, and reduce everyday pains.

All the workouts and movements are scaleable, meaning if you have injuries or limitations, the coaches will find a movement that works for you.

There will be no classes on November 23rd or on December 26th or 28th.

Cost of the class is $100 for November (8 classes) or $140 for November and December (14 classes). Click here for more details.

How Much Weight Should You Put on the Bar?

August 23, 2017

Some of you have, no doubt, been to gyms where they post the “prescribed” weight for a workout on the whiteboard. Others of you maybe remember long ago when I used to post weights alongside the workout. This leads us to three great questions: Why did I stop posting weights? Why do other gyms post weights? If there is no weight listed, how much should you do?
I stopped posting weights because some people would do the posted weights with atrocious form. Others would do the posted weights with passable form but take forever to finish, essentially getting a strength workout when I intended to give them a conditioning workout. And finally, a few folks would do the posted weights and it was too easy. The takeaway for me was: people need to find a weight that they can do with decent form, that allows them to get a conditioning workout, and that delivers a decent challenge for them.
Other gyms post weights because… no two CrossFit gyms need to be the same. One gym’s awesome culture is another gym’s nightmare culture.
As a general rule, if there are 21 or less reps of something in a workout, you should pick a weight that you can do unbroken (at least for the first round, if there is more than one round). This is a rule with MANY exceptions but it is a pretty good starting place. If you’re not sure what weight you should use, try asking the coach what the INTENT of the workout is. Is the intent to test your strength? Then go heavy. Is the intent to push your technique? Then pick a weight that you can maintain good technique with. Ask questions and discover the purpose behind the workout which will hopefully lead you to an appropriate weight.
As a final note, if you are not very competent with the movement, the weight you should use is A DIFFERENT MOVEMENT. Don’t do motions you don’t have at least a moderate technical grasp on during the conditioning section – you’ll just burn in crummy technique. Do something else. Ask your coach for a substitute movement.

Specifics

January 18, 2017

Functional movements.  Yes.  Most of the time in CrossFit we do big movements like the clean and the burpee – movements that translate to real life motions.  That’s good.  Let’s keep doing that.

But sometimes it is valuable to break things down into simplier movements.  Sometimes it is valuable to target an area.  The reason could be to prevent an injury or to shore up a weakness.  It’s okay.  If you’ve got crappy elbows try doing some bicep curls.  You can do those and still be a CrossFitter… they aren’t against the law.

The video shows a couple accessory movements – the one legged KB deadlift and the Cuban press.  Try them.  If they help you, great.  If they don’t, no worries.

Tight Hips?

January 17, 2017

What to do about tight hips?  Well, probably lots of things but here are a coutlet things that have helped me and I’ve seen work for other people as well.  These two moves, the boxed pigeon and the death stretch, work particularly well together.  They create some sort of double whammy loosening on rusty hip joints.

My advice is to do 2 minutes on each side for both these moves.  Do some squats before and after and see if it makes any difference in terms of your ease of movement.  If it does, maybe stick with these two moves for a while.  If it doesn’t… don’t.  Mobility work is all about finding out what works for you.  Steal from others but only keep what gives yo7 positive results.