Father Andrew's Hot Body Gym

February 28, 2010

5 Signs You’re Not Working Hard Enough

Filed under: real talk — Mara @ 5:59 pm

CrossFit Casualties: the ideal post-met-con recovery position.

(Note: If you have been doing CrossFit for 3 months or less, this does NOT apply to you.)

As we get more comfortable with our crazy CrossFit WODs, and as our fitness levels increase so that we don’t constantly finish our workouts in quivering puddles on the floor, it becomes harder to judge our intensity and easier to stop just short of full-bore. I find I know my body and the elements of our workouts well enough now to take just enough breaks to keep myself from going over the edge into total pain and exhaustion.

This is potentially good, as I think that postponing muscle failure can sometimes lead to increased work output over the course of the workout. But if I use this knowledge to avoid the all-out intensity that leads to the biggest strength and overall health gains, then that is not good at all.

So the question arises, how can we make sure that we’re still giving our all at workouts once we’ve moved beyond the initial excitement and become accustomed to regular hard exercise? We all have articulated a desire to be serious athletes, to achieve a high level of fitness, and to exercise in a way that leads to optimal health. Are we putting our money where our mouths are?

In discussing this issue, Coach Josh and I came up with 5 signs that you’re not working hard enough:

1) You’re not sore. It might not happen every workout anymore, but you should still be pushing yourself enough that you experience some significant muscle soreness at least once a week.

2) You’re not nauseated. We don’t want anyone throwing up, but a slight feeling of nausea is a sign that you’re pushing yourself to your limits. Once a week for a workout hard enough to turn your stomach is a good goal.

3) You’re regularly not finishing workouts. Except in cases of injury or debilitating dizziness, you should always finish the workout, no matter how slowly or pathetically. Scale down however you need to, but giving up is not what we do at FAHBG.

4) You feel like you could go again. If you finish the WOD and two minutes later feel like you could do another one, you’re not working hard enough. Sometimes this just happens, due to over-scaling or rotation issues. In this case, the solution is to do a finisher. We have found that AMRAP thrusters in 1 minute or AMRAP wall balls in 2 minutes will usually get the job done.

5) You’re not making progress. The numbers don’t lie. CrossFit provides the powerful tool of quantifiable progress in the form of benchmark WODS and max lifts. If you’re not seeing at least some improvement in these markers, you either have some kind of form issue getting in the way or you’re not pushing yourself.

Andrew's personal post-WOD position

1 Comment »

  1. I hate that this is true. Post-Lent is going to be a nightmare for me.

    Comment by Micah Vandegrift — March 2, 2010 @ 8:47 am

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