***REMINDER – Don’t forget about Saturday’s one-year anniversary party from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m.  Please RSVP to [email protected]***

Workout of the Day:
Deadlift – Find your new one-rep max in five attempts or less.
(Maintain perfect posture and mechanics throughout the lift, or the lift does not count.)
and then,
For max reps:
45 seconds of Deadlift (use 70% of today’s 1-RM)
45 seconds of Rest
45 seconds of Handstand Push-Ups
45 seconds of Rest
30 seconds of Deadlift
30 seconds of Rest
30 seconds of Handstand Push-Ups
30 seconds of Rest
15 seconds of Deadlift
15 seconds of Rest
15 seconds of Handstand Push-Ups

and then,
Complete 100 Double-Unders for time.
Bilateral Hip Bridge CrossFit Invictus San Diego

Wake Your Butt Up – Part One
Written by Mark Riebel

Most of us are aware of our rear ends — the two cheeks we walk around with filling out our jeans and giving us a comfortable area on which to sit every day at work.  But the attractive factor and a mobile seat are far from what your butt is actually for.  Your glutes (the gluteus maximus, medius, and minimus) don’t exist just to shake on the dance floor, they are prime movers of your hips and legs, and often a lot of athletes in our gym just plain don’t know how to use them to their advantage.  In this post I want to focus on your glute max, the big powerhouse that makes up most of the mass in your backside.

Your gluteus maximus is primarily an extender of the hip, a key piece of any clean, squat, jump or any other movement where you move from a flexed-hip position to a more open one.  But here’s the deal, while all of these movements require the glutes to really work, due to years of movement without proper recruitment of the those muscles, you can end up over-using some of your other muscles which severely limits your progress.  Think relying on your spinal erectors for a deadlift or heavily on your quads for a squat—your glute max is one of the strongest muscles in your body, so you’re doing yourself a disservice to not use both of them properly.  If you or any of your training partners have that little “butt shimmy” when they come up on a squat, poor glute recruitment could be to blame.  But fear not!  After a few sessions of some simple exercises, you can help your glutes to remember just what they are there to do.  These exercises are also easily increased in difficulty if you’re looking for a bit more of a challenge.

Your coaches will typically give you some glute activation exercises during warm-ups on days involving hip extension movements, but there’s a few that I recommend doing on a more regular basis, particularly if you think you may be suffering from “gluteal amnesia,” and especially in warm-ups on those days when you’ll need them in the workout.

Hip Bridges

We’ve done these weighted before, but for just patterning and learning how to get the hip extension down, go with un-weighted.  Lay on your back with your feet on the floor and knees bent at about 90 degrees.  (See photo above.)  Keeping your weight on your shoulders and feet, squeeze your glutes together to bridge up and extend your hip fully.  (See photo below.)  Hold for about a second and then relax.  Do three sets of ten to twenty reps on these.  This entry-level version isn’t to build strength, but to remind your glutes what they do for a living.
Bilateral Hip Bridge Finish CrossFit Invictus San Diego

Fire Hydrants

Get on your hands and knees with a neutral spine.
Fire Hydrants CrossFit Invictus San Diego
Keeping the knee and hip flexed, raise your right knee out to the side of you, avoiding excessive twisting of the spine and pelvis to increase the range of motion.
Fire Hydrants Mid Position CrossFit Invictus San Diego
From this position, fully extend the right leg behind you, raising it higher than the level of your back, and really feeling the squeeze in your glute.
Fire Hydrant Finish CrossFit Invictus San Diego
Do three sets of ten to twenty on each leg in a slow and controlled manner.

Again, doing these on a regular basis will give the best benefit of retraining your glutes to do what they’re supposed to.  Next time, I’ll discuss some simple modifications to make these exercises more challenging to help further develop hip extension strength.

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FAQ - Workout of the Day (WOD)

What does WOD mean in CrossFit?

WOD stands for Workout of the Day. Most CrossFit gyms post one workout each day for their members and online followers to complete. Invictus currently offers THREE free programmed WODs each day (shown above)... and even more personalized and online supplemental programs through Invictus Athlete.

Which program is right for me? Can I move between them?

One thing that sets Invictus apart from other CrossFit gyms and online training programs is that we recognize everyone has different fitness goals, abilities and needs. Be sure to pick which programming is right for you so you can get a great workout that meets your needs.

What does 30X0 mean? (How to read the WOD)

Another thing you might notice that’s different about our programming is that we use ‘tempo training’ - almost always in the Fitness programming and in various cycles for the Performance and Competition programs. Those extra numbers (ex: @30X0) might seem confusing at first glance but you’ll totally get how it works and why we like to use it after reading this. Trust us, you’ll soon witness the many benefits firsthand. Learn more about tempo training.

I need help with some standard movements and warm-up ideas!

Whether you’re new to CrossFit or have lots of experience with the WOD, our coaches will help you get the most out of every workout. It doesn’t matter if you struggle with a particular movement or if your goals are pushing you toward the higher skilled and more elusive movements, our professional coaches support everyone with advice and feedback.

They have worked with all athlete levels and know what it takes to get people moving to the best of their abilities. Whether it’s burpees, double-unders, muscle-ups, or tips for the Assault Bike - we’ve got a coach who can help you.

Don’t worry, we’ve got your warm-ups covered, too. Our coaches are constantly learning from other modalities and love to use what they learn in innovative warm-ups focused on both preparing for the workout at hand and maintaining the body for a pain free life. Check out this full body routine to keep your joints functioning and free of inflammation. We also post warm-up suggestions in the Workout of the Day for each of the programs that are tailored to that day’s movements.

Workout on your own and don’t have much time for your warm-up? Here’s a couple of quick and simple ones for your shoulders, squat day, deadlifts, and everyone’s problem area, the thoracic spine.

What if I can’t lift the weight or do the movement as prescribed?

Scaling is part of the beauty of CrossFit because it enables workouts and programming to be tailored to anyone’s ability. When it comes to weight, you can and should ALWAYS scale the weight down if it is unsafe for you to lift it, or if it changes the intended stimulus of the workout.

Here are some rules of thumb for scaling weight in metcons (lifting for time). For gymnastics movements, there are some simple scaling solutions as well. If you are unsure, reach out to your Invictus coach! We are here to make sure you get the safest and best workout possible - proper scaling allows for that.

How many days per week should I train? / How many rest days should I take?

At Invictus, we offer programming 6 days a week, Monday-Saturday and we realize not everyone’s schedule - or training needs - are the same and therefore, you must use your best judgement and listen to your body when it comes to deciding how often to take a rest day.

If you have been doing CrossFit for a while now, you recognize that our program excels due to the high intensity component. With that being said, one thing you have to keep in mind is that you can’t sustain that high intensity every single day; otherwise your body ends up breaking down.

You can learn more about how often someone should take a rest day in this article.

What does EMOM stand for?

EMOM stands for Every Minute on the Minute. When you see that come up in a workout, you have up to one minute to complete the exercise required. Normally what’s prescribed won’t take the entire minute so you also have whatever is left of the time to rest until the next minute starts and you do the next set of prescribed work. And so on.

What does AMRAP mean?

AMRAP means “As Many Rounds (and Reps) as Possible” in a certain time period. For example, the workout might say...

AMRAP in 10 minutes of:

30 Double-Unders
20 Pull-Ups
10 Thrusters

So you would keep going through the cycle of those three exercises until the 10 minutes is up. Your score is the number of complete rounds plus any extra reps you did. So if you did four complete rounds plus 15 Double-Unders in the fifth round, your score would be 4+15.

What does OTM mean?

OTM stands for “On the Minute” and is the same thing as an EMOM. When you see that come up in a workout, you have up to one minute to complete the exercise required. Normally what’s prescribed won’t take the entire minute so you also have whatever is left of the time to rest until the next minute starts and you do the next set of prescribed work. And so on.

What does NFT mean?

NFT stands for “Not for Time” and means that you shouldn’t rush or try to go fast, but instead, focus on technique, skill, form or whatever you are working on for that movement.

How heavy should my first set be?

You might also be wondering where to start your first set if, for example, the workout of the day calls for 5 sets of Deadlift x 5 reps. Is the first set a warm-up or is that the first working set? Here’s our recommendation for how to properly build to your starting weight and what we consider warm-up sets and working sets.

How can I figure out my 1RM?

We frequently use percentage references in prescribing the number of reps to perform, so it’s essential that you have a good idea on most of your maxes.

Let’s say it’s been awhile since you have attempted a 1RM; maybe you had an injury a few months ago, or maybe you just somehow keep missing the 1-RM test days, or maybe you just forgot to write it down in your log book. If you have a multiple-rep max, you’re in luck. There’s actually a simple equation you can use to calculate an estimated 1RM based on the max number of reps you can do at a given weight.