I"m new to the forum here. I mix up CF and Conjugate training. Do you do the programming for Crossfit-Strength or just work with those guys?
If so, any guidelines you guys use to choose the volume of assitance work and length of metcons?
Also, do you take assistance work until failure or leave some reps in the tank?
Finally, I notice they change assistance work on every workout, do you think it is better to stick with the same assistance work for a few weeks then change or mix it up every day?
Their workouts do look good to me and from what I have seen a lot of the members are making significant progress. Here are the profiles for the Trainers:
Tony is not big on forums but I can see if he is interested in stopping by at some point; or if not I can relay answers to your questions.
I've been waiting for someone to smash these two together but I always thought it wouldn't be necessary since westside already had addressed how to condition. Why isn't it called "Westside Conditioning"? I find it peculiar that its called "Crossfit Strength". Its almost like crossfit is taking the credit for the strength portion of the program. If crossfit is so good at developing strength and size, why does it need westside?
I am finding Crossfit more and more pretentious everyday.
I am just being honest with my questions here.
CrossFit is bright enough to incorporate all types of fitness modalities. Strength training is one of them and again, they are bright enough to go to the best, Louie Simmons.
They call it CrossFit strength because they are CrossFit...
I really think a huge percentage of the population is mildly retarded...
I guess when you create a brand so ambiguous by never explaining anything, it can take credit for everything.
I say this, and I use some of the WODs. I am really being a devil's advocate here.
My favorite is the powerlifting and Xfit WODs...interesting. At the gym I work at, there is a HUGE leader board/ PR board of WOD times etc....perhaps I'll take one as well.
And ha, makes sense that your fiance does xfit, no wonder she is one of the few gals who can deadlift.
If you took out the part about the cert I'd imagine that most people with journals on this forum do something that could be called Crossfit.
Almost everyone with a passing knowledge of CF seem to think that CF = programming for the main page. That's just not true.
Last edited by StLRPh; 08-13-2011 at 08:40 AM.
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Exactly. I think people are just so quick to judge because it's growing in popularity.
I had a stint with a CrossFit style program back in 2007, but decided to switch to something else. If there is one thing that I enjoy most about CrossFit, is that it's getting people, especially women, lifting weights and keeping in shape. I'm sure I've said this many of times already, but working in a commercial gym, you get a lot of those concerns from women who don't want to bulk up because their perception of weight lifting has been geared to the body building types for decades.
I point them over to the 50 year old female CrossFit trainer who looks like she's in her 20s and beg to differ.
One positive that some seem to forget Crossfit has introduced others into strength sports. I personally was
Brought here through Crossfit. And have to agree with Chris the community at the crossfit gyms I have been is very evident.
The crossfit community is really awesome. Today we had a brutal workout and it really helps to have people there cheering you on and doing the workout with you at the same time to keep you moving and motivated. I definitely work a lot harder when I am at a crossfit gym than when I am not and I attribute most of that to the community aspect.
With powerlifting meets, you can get this too, but these people do it every day. Really inspiring. However, I do wish some of them would clean up their form.
I got involved in strength training/fitness probably, like many of us in high school to get big and strong. With the typical methods of the time bodybuilding, HIT and Dinosaur training, I got stronger than the average joe, but am definitely no monster. Things seemed to stagnate and my training hit a wall, on top of that life got in the way so I couldn't be as "hardcore" as I wanted.
After med school, I heard about CF, and looking at the website it seemed a little to chaotic, hodge podge to me. But after watching the main page for a while, I decided to give it a try because I knew deep down I couldn't do most of the workouts. Instead of a more traditional bodybuilding/strength approach. It refreshed my training, exposed my to Oly lifting, got me to do muscle ups, got me to do hand stand pushups, boosted my pullup ability and got me back into explosive training intstead of my older method of do heavy weights 2-3 times a week and condition 2-3 times a week.
Despite how many feel, everyone I've encountered in the CF community is open to new ideas and methods. They have some core concepts but their key goal is to improve performance. So they talk to Louie to figure out ways to get stronger. It makes sense to me. Yeah, they ain't perfect, but they've put together some great ideas and market it well. Through CF I was able to meet Chris Mason and Louie.
Now I train 80-90% Conjugate/Westside style and add in some metcon/conditioning CF style. Without CF, which led me in this direction, I don't think I would've gotten to where I am. What I do now isn't mainpage CF, but it uses what I've learned from it and a lot of boxes and individuals that do CF don't follow mainpage, but probaly do some basic strength work--maybe Westside, maybe Starting Strength, maybe Wendler 5/3/1 then some type of metcon 2-4 times a week and then some skills work and mobility work. CF didn't create this but it helped market/inspire it.
I guess the bad, is that it can come across dogmatic at times and all the odd movements can be intimidating for a novice or seem almost weird to someone used to working pecs and bis. Probably most frustrating might be some of its claims to be the best program. I think it uses core elements that help make it a great program, and using those key elements will lead to some training sucess.
Also, the lack of individualization can be problematic at times, but I think good boxes know to address this.
Sorry for the rant.
This woman is a competitive CrossFit athlete. She is not the only one of her ilk. Reason enough for anyone to want to CF in my book....
^ That is a pretty good reason to get involved in CF. And I agree with the reasons stated before, like the intro of Oly lifting to the general public, the revitalization of Oly lifting, etc, these are all good things.
But I think it speaks volumes that a lot of the gurus who helped start it have left on bad terms with the CF brass, like Rippetoe, etc. And some of their programming, especially on the main site, is just plain retarded (like, for example, anything that requires beginners/intermediates to do very high rep olympic lifts).
But that doesn't mean all of them don't know what they're doing. Some of the programming by these crossfit offshoots is solid. I did crossfit football for 3 months last year, and I think it's programming was about as good as can be for their stated goals. My one criticism, as always, was that it was hard to gauge progress if you wanted anything more than all around fitness. But, that was also serendipitous because it forced me to get off my lazy ass and read some books on periodization and programming, so thanks CF!
Rippetoe is someone they should have never used in my opinion. A clearly inferior strength training coach. Hmmm, who would I rather work with, Mark Rippetoe and his Starting Strength crap, or Louie Simmons and his 5 decades of incredible powerlifting performances, his gym's ownership of just about every record anyone cares about, and the fact that his methods influence essentially ALL forms of strength training practiced today.
Gee, tough decision...
I enjoyed reading Starting Strength and think Rip offers a solid beginner to itnermediate program. My understanding and this is only from internet lore, is that he has taken numerous novices/weak people and made them solid strength athletes. I know this isn't the same as Westside's ability to produce champion after champion, but it doesn't mean his program is completely useless.
I know Louie promotes his program when in a senses "scaled" can be used from the beginner to world champion. But, wonder if Starting Strength would be a good feeder program before going conjugate. The reason I think this is that Starting Strength gives you repeated exposure to the same lifts to master them and go up on them rapidly.
Whereas if you are rotating ME exercises in a Westside program you might be spending a lot of time intially learning all the lift variants. So, I'm thinking after you get good skill (not full mastery) in the core lifts that are promoted in Starting Strength you'd be ready for the ME lifts since you've had some time to refine technique.
Also, by doing the lifts in Starting Strength fashion you might be able to identify your weaknesses in a certain lift since you are doing them so frequently--if every time I squat I fail out of the hole, I'll be able to see a pattern sooner since I'm squatting twice a week. Whereas with the Westside System, it might be 4 weeks until you do a lift again, so maybe the first time you stalled in the hole and the next failed in a later portion of the lift and so the deficieny won't be as clear since you can't monitor it as frequently. Now in the long run, once you have more experience with either program you'll probably be able to identify your weaknesses, I'm must wondering if a starter program wheter it is Starting Strength, Wendler's 5/3/1 or even some modified Westside Program--say sticking with the main lifts for ME for a couple training cycles...might feed better before one jumps into a full blown Westside Program.
Now, what could trump all is having a good coach. So if you are a home gym poser like me, I don't get a lot of supervision outside of a video camera and my brother. If I had someone watching me with Westside XP, then maybe it would be a diffrent story.
What do you find to be the key weaknesses of Starting Strength?
Doesn't work speed
Doesn't hit Max Effort work hard enough (5's instead of singles and triples)
Doesn't use accomodating resistance
Doesn't vary the lifts enough
Uses the main lifts themselves to work through weaknesses
No Box Squats
Has you squat looking down with thumbs on top and hands pinning bar instead of grabbing it
Maybe more importantly, what elements are key to both programs that result in sucess?
Lifting heavy weights and focusing on compound exercises
Being consistent in the gym
Some variance of the intensity--wheter a sub max ramp up as in Starting Strength or rotating exercises as Westside does?
I wish I had a pair of twin high schoolers with no training experienc and give them 6 months or a year on both programs.
With my understanding of both systems, in the long run Westside seems to be the way to go since it addresses different elements of strength, but my only concern is does it require more expertise from a starting perspective.
The thing with having a rank novice do westside style conjugate training is that you have to be there to coach them on everything, because they just don't know anything. So, it's great, if that's possible. Though I bet even Mason would change it a little and not rotate exercises every week but every three weeks (chime in on this, would you?)
The thing about starting strength is that it is very effective for novices (only), for a while, without so much coaching. It's simple and effective, even if not as effective as a conjugate approach. But if it's you, your bar, in your garage...
After starting strength, one could more easily move into a conjugate method system, with the experience under their belt (that hopefully they've purchased by now).
The thing I find interesting about any CrossFitter arguing against Westside for a beginner with the idea a coach needs to be around is that there is ALWAYS a coach around with CrossFit...
The above is not to say I really agree with the argument, but even if I did, it makes no sense based upon how CF boxes are run.