The Athlete’s Guide

Embracing the techniques and culture of your new CrossFit or functional fitness box can be a struggle at first. Welcome to the Box will guide you through your new active lifestyle so that you can make a commitment to becoming a fitter version of yourself. Keep reading to get a taste of what the book has to offer.

WHY DO I HAVE TO TAKE ELEMENTS/ON RAMP/FOUNDATIONS CLASSES?

Your box uses a lot of movements, techniques and procedures that you may not be familiar with yet, here’s your chance to learn. Also, you’ll get the chance to learn more about yourself as an athlete. THE BOOK

WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN STRENGTH WORK, SKILL PRACTICE AND CONDITIONING WORKOUTS?

Strength work makes you stronger, skill practice allows you to hone new exercises, and conditioning workouts make you better at working under stress. Each of them supports one another, it’s important not to let any of them lag too much. THE BOOK

HOW DO I STRUCTURE WARM UP SETS IN STRENGTH WORK?

If you have to do work sets of 5 reps at 155 pounds, you need to be comfortable moving each subsequent weight from the empty bar to 155. For some this means small jumps in weight, for others this means larger jumps but more reps. Don’t waste energy doing too many warm up sets. THE BOOK

WHY DO I HAVE TO SNATCH AND CLEAN AND JERK?

The Olympic lifts are two of the most athletic movements in the gym. Everything that goes in to perfecting these two movements carries over into all other athletic endeavors. THE BOOK

HOW DO I SCALE MOVEMENTS THAT I CAN’T DO IN WODS?

First, determine the intent of the exercise i.e., pressing overhead or constant movement. Then choose an exercise that has a similar intent with which you can maintain virtuosity for the duration of the workout. THE BOOK

WHAT DO I DO IF I’M INJURED?

Your top priority is recovering from the injury, don’t let it become nagging or recurring. Re-work the goals of your training so that you can focus on aspects of your training that can still improve while injured. THE BOOK

HOW MANY TIMES/WEEK SHOULD I WORKOUT?

Most find a sweet spot between 3-5 times per week. Consider the idea of lowest effective dose- what is the least amount of work you can do in order to achieve your goals. THE BOOK

HOW DO I LOSE MORE WEIGHT?

If you have exercise in check, it’s probably time to clean up your eating. The paleo diet is a great place to start. THE BOOK

HOW CAN I HANG OUT WITH ALL MY NEW BOX FRIENDS OUTSIDE OF THE BOX?

Be the first one to introduce yourself during a workout and be the best cheerleader you can be. Your box may plan social events that you can attend, if they don’t- you can plan them. THE BOOK

WHAT IS THE BEST GEAR TO WEAR DURING WORKOUTS?

You need to be comfortable and move as well as possible, how much flair you have is up to you. Proper footwear is versatile and durable. THE BOOK

HOW DO I BECOME UN-SCARED OF SOME EXERCISES?

Talk to other athletes at your gym who you look up to to see how they overcame hurdles. Too often people spend all of their time trying to move too much weight or pushing to failure too often instead of practicing and moving virtuously. THE BOOK

I’M SO SORE! AM I DOING SOMETHING WRONG?

If you’re new to intense training, it’s possible it’s normal. Keep a thorough workout journal that you can review with a coach for more specific guidance. Make sure the journal tracks other life stressors too so you can consider those. THE BOOK

WHAT CAN I DO OUTSIDE OF CLASS TO GET BETTER?

Sleep and eat well. Keep learning from other resources and stay active. A healthy, happy lifestyle will do more for your performance in a workout than anything else. THE BOOK

I’M REALLY INFLEXIBLE, WHAT CAN I DO TO IMPROVE?

From the eye of an experienced coach learn what specifically is hindering your movement and perform very regular maintenance in order to improve it. You got to put in the time or nothing will change. Also, drink lots of water and stay active. THE BOOK