Workout of the Day:
3-3-3-3-3
Shoulder Press, followed immediately by
Weighted Pull-Ups
(Rest as needed between sets.)

Sarah (aka, Dingo) - CrossFit Invictus Mascot and Director of Canine Training
Sarah (aka, Dingo) - CrossFit Invictus Mascot and Director of Canine Training

Why I Shaved My Milk Moustache
Written by Calvin Sun

If you haven’t already, I would recommend reading Mark’s post, “Why I Like Milk” (posted yesterday), prior to reading this one. I don’t entirely agree with Mark but he does make some valid points. A lot of research has shown saturated fat is not quite the nutritional evil it’s been thought to be and milk is certainly a cheap and easy way to get your calories. In fact, many strength and mass gain programs call for a gallon of milk a day to supplement an athlete’s diet. Milk is the choice food of infant mammals, so there certainly is some data that supports the notion that milk will contribute to weight gain.

Mark suggests drinking milk as an ideal post-workout food to replenish glycogen, the stored carbohydrate in your muscle tissue and liver. Post-workout there is a window of approximately 30 minutes where the body is primed for nutrient absorption and glycogen replenishment. Milk has a low glycemic index which is typically considered to be a positive attribute, it means that milk will slowly elevate blood sugar as opposed to high glycemic index foods which cause a rapid increase in blood sugar. Given such a narrow window of time, it is more effective to use a carbohydrate source that would quickly enter the bloodstream.

Despite it’s low glycemic index, a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that milk has an exceptionally high insulin index that rivals white bread. That means even though the carbohydrates in milk enter the bloodstream slowly, the insulin response triggered is disproportionately high. Dr. Loren Cordain, states that milk, along with refined sugars and grains, can result in insulin levels that are elevated for upwards of several hours. As many of you already know, high insulin levels can lead to a myriad of health issues including diabetes, obesity, hypertension, hypertriglyceridemia, and glucose intolerance. Dr. Barry Sears, creator of the Zone Diet, contends that high insulin can lead to a state of chronic inflammation making us predisposed to disease. Dr. Cordain adds that excessive calcium consumption can impair zinc absorption which in turn can further promote inflammation.

So should you drink milk? If you feel lethargic, bloated, or have any type of gastrointenstinal distress after consuming dairy, you should certainly consider making some adjustment to your diet. Also, if you have trouble losing a few of those holiday pounds, you might want to rethink your dairy intake. On the other hand, if you wish to pack on a few pounds of muscle (and invariably fat), try supplementing your diet with lots of milk.

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steve
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steve

My post workout meal consists of Whey Protein mixed in chocolate milk and a banana. I want an insulin spike, as this leads to the sugar being immediately deposited into the muscles. Since the muscles have used most of the sugar / energy in them from the workout, I consider this a good thing. I got the idea from bodybuilding years ago and it makes sense to me. I could be wrong but I like it.

Chris Freischlag
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Chris Freischlag

Fellow Invicti, I wanted to give a hearty “thank you” to both Calvin and Mark who have recently been helping me to tweak/fix my Bee Charming squat form. I still have major issues to address, but it’s getting better each week. I suggest anyone who is having trouble with their squat technique to get some input from Mark, Calvin or any of our fine trainers. I have benefited from some very effective stretching and flexibility drills (that can be done in the office) taught by our trainers. We are very fortunate at CFI to have some well rounded coaches who… Read more »

Invictus
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Invictus

While it is positive to discuss the ups and downs of various foods, the health problem overall is not solved by leaving it up to the individual person… let me explain… While the CrossFit subculture and various others may want to spend time hacking their diets and bodies for optimal fitness and health the average person does not. It’s probably a combination of a lack of desire, time, knowledge, and awareness. So what I suspect happens is that diet is often ignored as a health factor when people develop ailments such as IBS (irritable bowel). So if giving people a… Read more »

mike
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mike

I can see how too much of anything can reduce the level of reaction sensitivity, generally speaking. The analogy is drug addicts that need more to get the same high.

Anyway, I just know that since I’ve started more milk (in coffee), my lactose intolerance has gone down so I will keep drinking it (in moderation, of course!) as it makes me feel good and gets me going for my training. As Mark says, it really comes down to the individual person.

Mark
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Mark

I spent some time looking at the whey-insulin response and happened on two studies of note. One published in the Nov. 2008 issue of Nutrition Research showed that insulin sensitivity, shown by the number of insulin receptors on cells, increased along with insulin itself during ingestion of whey, seeming to suggest that a spike in the hormone wouldn’t then lead to intolerance. The other I found interesting was published last year in the British Journal of Nutrition showed that glucagon levels increased along with insulin as whey was ingested, and the ratio of glucagon to insulin went up as protein… Read more »

Calvin Sun
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Calvin Sun

Mike,
Even bodybuilders try to limit insulin spikes to the post-workout window. Consuming dairy or drinking shakes throughout the day can lead to diminished insulin sensitivity. Definitely not a good idea for the athlete that is trying to stay lean.

mike
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mike

That actually makes a lot of sense. Whey has been known to cause an insulin spike, which in the bodybuilding world, is what they want as it contributes to the anabolic effect, if I’m not mistaken.

The yam/sweet potato suggestion is one of the greatest statements to come out of Robb’s mouth. I _love_ both. So. Good.

Calvin Sun
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Calvin Sun

POS,
Robb Wolf suggests yams or sweet potatoes as a great post-workout carb source. Those sources will replenish muscle glycogen first whereas fruit, specifically fructose, will refill the liver first and only the remainder going to the muscles.

Calvin Sun
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Calvin Sun

Mike,
The glycemic load is about 2-3 depending on the fat content, so the load is pretty low. Neither the GI nor GL are to blame for the disproportionate response. A recent study also published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that the whey in dairy is the cause of the mismatched response. Read it here: http://www.ajcn.org/cgi/reprint/80/5/1246. It will make you think twice about your precious protein powder.

POS
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POS

Thanks Calvin. So what are some post workout nutrition recovery suggestions?

mike
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mike

What is the glycemic load (not index) for milk? If the load is high, that may explain the insulin spiking. If it doesn’t, well then *shrug*.

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.