Workout of the Day:
Five rounds for time of:
400 Meter Run
15 Overhead Squats, 95/65 lbs.
(Compare performance to September 2, 2009)
Michele’s Keys to CrossFit (and the Universe)
Written by Michele Vieux
I feel like I say these things over and over while coaching and there is a good reason for it. They are the keys to athletic performance and can make you faster, stronger, better, and mentally tougher in ANYTHING you set out to accomplish.
Bracing is not just for one rep max deadlifts and squats. That big breath in and tightening of the midline before a lift should be used before kicking up into a handstand, hitting a backhand in your tennis match, taking a charge in you pickup basketball game, as well as any other activity in which you want to project maximum power and not crumble on top of yourself into a pile of flesh and bones.
Perfect mechanics go a long way in the long run. Setting up the correct way and continuing to use perfect form throughout the entire movement puts you in the perfect position to execute with the most potential power in the quickest, most efficient, and easiest way possible. If you have been using poor form, you have not reached your potential. Take the time to retrain yourself and adhere to strict form. Slow down until you have achieved it and you will find it will make you faster, stronger, and more efficient in the long run. You might need to recruit the help of one of your coaches for this, but quality of movement should be your focus.
Set a goal. Never go into anything—workout or daily task—without some sort of goal. It doesn’t always have to be a time goal. It could be to finish the workout with perfect form. It could be not to take a water break until you are done. It could be to finish a certain round or exercise unbroken. It could be to avoid that cookie in the break room. Tell someone what your goal is so they can help remind you and keep you accountable.
Live by the “four quarter rule”. I used this trick when I was a swimmer in my youth (my specialty was the 200M butterfly)—it was verified by my friend, “the Real Nik Hawkes”, a former Navy man and current instructor who has spent a great many hours studying mental toughness and how to achieve it. This will help keep you moving through any workout or challenge in life. Whatever you are facing, divide it into four quarters.
An easy example of this is a four-round workout. Start the first round at a pace you know you can keep throughout the entire workout. Round two should be used to check yourself. It is easy to drift off or lose momentum in this round. Don’t drop too far behind your round one pace and if you find yourself falling behind, pick back up to that pace you know you can hold. The third round is the most important in terms of making something big happen. This is where you go above and beyond, push yourself to your max, and pull away from the pack. Pick up the pace and get through this round and you know you are onto the home stretch. Most people wait until the final round to start this move. Start in round three and all you need to do is bring it home—finish strong! You should have just enough left to accomplish this and hopefully a new PR, feat of strength, conquering of a life obstacle, or whatever it was you set out to achieve.