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Programming

Programming overview w/c 15 January 2018

WEEK 3/16
Programming w/c 15th January 2018
 
ANNOUNCEMENTS
 
Registration for the 2018 CrossFit Open is LIVE! More information coming soon.
 
NEW CLASSES & SCHEDULE CHANGES
 
N/A.
 
CROSSFIT WOD
 
Programming photo attached.
 
OLYMPIC LIFTING
 
Monday:
Jerk.
 
Wednesday:
Clean & Jerk.
 
Sunday:
Snatch.
 
POWERLIFTING
 
Monday:
Deadlift.
 
Wednesday:
Bench.
 
Sunday:
Squat.
 
COMPETITION
 
Tuesday:
TBD.
 
Thursday:
TBD.
 
Saturday:
TBD.
 
HEAVY METAL CLUB
 
Monday:
Clean & Jerk and squat.
 
Friday:
Snatch and squat.
 
CROSSFIT GYMNASTICS
 
Thursday:
Pull-up, HSPUs, ring rows.
 
Saturday:
Rop conditioning, push-ups, GWOD.
 
BARBELL STRENGTH
 
Saturday:
Deadlift and Bench.
 
FLEXIBILITY
 
Monday:
Chest, bridge & straddle.
 
Wednesday:
Front & side splits.
 
Saturday:
Shoulders, bridge & back-bend strength.
 
ADULT GYMNASTICS STRENGTH
 
Monday:
Level 1 – mid, inversions.
Level 2 – HSW, HSPU, flag.
 
Wednesday:
Level 1 – mid, HS, push-ups.
Level 2 – HSW, HSPU, levers.
 

Programming overview w/c 8 January 2018


WEEK 2/16
Programming w/c 8th January 2018
ANNOUNCEMENTS
If you didn’t see Luke’s post last week, you’ll be seeing the face of Mike Lee around the gym a lot over the coming year. He’s the new CEO of CFLDN and will be running the businesses at CrossFit London and CrossFit SE11, seeing us through the move to the new gym and beyond. He’ll be taking Wednesday mornings at 10 MP for the time being; come say hello.
NEW CLASSES & SCHEDULE CHANGES
N/A
CROSSFIT WOD
Programming photo attached.
OLYMPIC LIFTING
Monday:
Clean and Jerk.
Wednesday:
Snatch.
Sunday:
Clean.
POWERLIFTING
Monday:
Squat.
Wednesday:
Deadlift.
Sunday:
Bench.

COMPETITION
Tuesday:
A. T2B; B. STOH cycling; C. DUs, power snatches.
 
Thursday:
A. BMU; B. Squat snatch; C. Run/bike, DUs, squat snatch.
 
Saturday:
A. HS walks; B. Deadlifts; C. Open 14.4.

HEAVY METAL CLUB
Monday:
Clean & Jerk and squat.
Friday:
Snatch and squat.
BARBELL STRENGTH
Saturday:
Squat and press.
CROSSFIT GYMNASTICS
Thursday:
Pull-up, push-up, midline.
Saturday:
Ring pull-ups, TTB, HSPUs.
FLEXIBILITY
Monday:
Front & side splits.
Wednesday:
Shoulders & bridge.
Saturday:
Front & side splits.

Programming overview w/c 1 January 2018

WEEK 1/16
Programming w/c 1st January 2018
 
ANNOUCNEMENTS
 
Happy New Year!
 
If you haven’t already see, check the latest blog post for the update on the new gym.
 
NEW CLASSES & SCHEDULE CHANGES
 
New year and while the schedule is largely the same, there are some key changes.
 
Yoga: unfortunately Christine is no longer able to offer her Tuesday Yoga class in the New Year. When circumstance change we hope to add it back, but you could always try Felix‘s Flexibility class in the interim.
 
Engine: new Engine class with Kyle on Friday’s at 6:30am. Rowing, running, skipping and the neeeeew assault bikes.
 
Fundamentals: the Level 1s have been redesigned as the CrossFit Fundamentals for 2018. They start Saturday 6th January. Email support@crossfitlondonuk.com for more information, or check out the website.
 
CrossFit WOD: “Level 2” is no more. The “Level 1s” are now called “Fundamentals”, the Level 3s have been subsumed in higher level classes and it’s been years since anyone called Competition Focus “Level 4”. As such, the Level 2 name doesn’t make a lot of sense anymore. From 2018, Level 2, is now “CrossFit WOD” on the schedule. Change in name only, not in format.
 
Olympic Lifting: there will now be RX and Sc options in every class. The main lifts will be the same but you can scale up the difficultly if you feel ready: e.g. Rx: 3 position squat snatch – 1RM, Sc: hang power snatch – 5×3. The Wednesday class is now at 18:30 in 10MP with Carolyn.
 
Powerlifting: A brand new cycle starts this week, with a back-to-basics linear progression programme. 16 weeks, testing in week 17.
 
CROSSFIT WOD
 
Programming photo attached.
 
OLYMPIC LIFTING
 
Monday:
Snatch.
 
Wednesday:
Clean.
 
Sunday:
Jerk.
 
POWERLIFTING
 
Monday:
Bench press.
 
Wednesday:
Squat.
 
Sunday:
Deadlift.
 
COMPETITION
 
Tuesday:
HSPUs/pistols/L sit, squat cleans, Open 16.2 (T2b, Dus, Sq clean)
 
Thursday:
C2B, snatch cycling, row/DB snatch/ring dips.
 
Saturday:
Ring muscle ups, power clean cycling, Cindy/hang p snatch, bike.
 
HEAVY METAL CLUB
 
Monday:
Snatch.
 
Friday:
TBD.
 
BARBELL STRENGTH
 
Saturday:
Deadlift & bench press.
 
CROSSFIT GYMNASTICS
 
Thursday:
Pull-ups, HSPUs, rope climbs – testing.
 
Saturday:
TTB, ring dips, muscle ups – testing.
 
FLEXIBILITY
 
Monday:
Shoulders & bridge.
 
Wednesday:
Front & side splits.
 
Saturday:
Chest, bridge & hamstrings

Programming at CrossFit London – October 2017

Starting next week, you’ll be seeing some changes in the CrossFit Level 2 programming. Don’t worry, there isn’t going to be a radical overhaul; we’re just simplifying and returning to the basics.  We are doing this because CFL offers a wide range of specialty classes. These speciality classes can be organized into three main categories: weightlifting, gymnastics, and metabolic conditioning. We offer some hybrid classes, too, such as Competition Focus, Benchmarks, and Heavy MetCon, but in general, they all focus on one of these three domains. So where does this leave our CrossFit Level 2 class?

 

The main focus of the CrossFit Level 2 class at CFL is general physical preparedness (GPP). The class is intended to be the basis of your training, giving you the opportunity to then specialise based on interest, training needs, or sport specific training. Therefore, our intention in each and every class is for you to learn a cool skill, build your strength, and have a hard, yet fun, WOD.

 

CrossFit separates itself from other high intensity training methodologies in that it requires skill acquisition. If you are just starting CrossFit at CFL, we will automatically direct you to our CrossFit Level 2 class, which will help you to acquire the necessary skills and strength as you develop your metabolic conditioning. After several months, you may find that you need to go on a strength programme or improve your Olympic Lifting to increase your performance in the main class. In these cases we would direct you to our specialty Powerlifting, Olympic Lifting, or Heavy Metal classes, which follow periodised strength programmes. Alternately, you may find that your gymnastic strength or skills lag behind your weightlifting ability, in which case, we’d direct you to our large array of gymnastic classes. What separates us from other gyms is that you have the freedom to tailor your training to your specific interests and needs.

 

CrossFit Pyramid

 

Therefore, we have come up with the WEEKLY blueprint below for our CrossFit Level 2 classes:

 

Strength/Skills:
2x Gymnastics skills/strength/complex
2x Olympic lifting strength/complex/technique
2x Barbell Strength
Other day will be taken up by longer WOD

 

WODs:
1x Benchmark (rotated on schedule)
1x Longer WOD
A good variation of AMRAPs, EMOMs, for time, for reps/intervals, for quality etc.
1x Partner WOD
Variation in time domains, rep schemes and weights
Not have more than 2-3x repeat movements unless for a specific reason

 

Rest Days:
Rest days are crucial in allowing you to recover, make gains, and avoid injury. As a gym, we encourage you to take rest days as you need. As we are based in London, with many busy clients working off their own schedules, we run a rolling programme with no rest days. This means that it’s up to you to plan out your training. We have endeavoured to randomise the programme such that, for example, if your schedule requires that you can only train every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, you’ll be getting a diverse array of movements and WODs. Every Monday, therefore, will not be a squat day or a “long WOD day.” As ever, all our coaches are at hand to help you structure your training and rest based on your goals.

 

RX/Scaled: What does this mean?
RX is a term used by doctors in the US to prescribe medicine. In CrossFit, it means the athlete performs all modalities using the prescribed weight and reps. In practice, the RX weights or reps are what we expect our top athletes to be able to perform. Depending on your sporting background, it could take a year, two, or longer to reach this level. We will also provide a “scaled” guideline. These weights are a benchmark for athletes who have the basic skills, technique, and strength to complete WODs efficiently and safely. Depending on each athlete, it could take somewhere between 0-6 months to reach the scaled weights/reps/movements. You may find yourself stuck between Scaled and RX in some WODs and this is perfectly fine. The more you train and discover your athletic capabilities, the sooner you will find where you lie. Our coaches are on hand in every class to help guide you in this process.

 

It goes without saying that the above follows a common sense policy. You may find that not all the above criteria are met, and that could be due to many different variables and factors. For example, in the run-up to The Open we might have Open-specific training, and then other months we may have little challenges to keep everyone on their toes. So be on the lookout for these developments! Keep in mind, if you attend our CrossFit Level 2 class consistently, you will increase your work capacity across broad time and modal domains.

 

Coach Nick

Back Squat Regime August to October.

Those of you who keep your ears to the ground will know that  I’ve  been taking various soundings from some trainers, therapists, physio’s, and clients about our forth coming back squat regime.
Everyone recognises the value of the back squat, even though it isn’t one of the CrossFit fundamental moves.
I originally thought of  a squat phase  in terms of  promoting our Olympic weightlifting work, having debated the issue with an Olympic weightlifting coach who suggested a  snatch/back squat relationship (snatch =60% of 1 rep max) but it is obviously part of the puzzle as far as the front squat, wall ball, thrusters, cleans etc goes.
Obviously, we all know correlation does not prove causation.
What we do know is that strength , if combined with Crossfit WOD capacity, is a winning formula
The issue, as far as I see,  is about the sets and reps over the next few weeks. I have spoken to some of our long standing members, especially those who lift regularly and who counsel staying in the 5 -2 range or 70%-95%. I’ve also spoken to some trainers about their experience of using %  in class which has been, in level 2,  overwhelmingly negative. Never the less some love percentages and everyone should learn about them
So in outline,  we will be doing  this:
On the No shoulder sessions, normally meaning twice a week, for the next 2 months (or so) we will set the back squat as a regular feature. Obviously with an amazing Wod to follow.
The coaches will have:
A)  the opportunity of designing hip activating warm ups and rest fillers, using whatever their views are: They may use stretching,  hip thrusts, 1 leg work, kettlebell swings: as they feel appropriate.
I’ve seen science and therapy reports justifying every approach. Even visualizing helps!
B)  the gift of setting sets between  8 and 3  sets. It will be their choice. I’d personally go 5 to 3 sets of 5’s   5 sets of 3, and 6 sets of 2, but the coaches can expand or contract the session as they feel appropriate.
c) The opportunity to educate the members on % and use % if they feel it’s useful for the clients in front of them.  In general, it’s useful making the %/ rep connection,
To make it clear, whatever you use ( a 5 or an 80% 0r 85%) you’ll be encouraged to sneak on a bit extra, or a “thin mint” if you, can on that day.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HJZPzQESq_0

 Equally, you’ll be allowed to drift down if that day isn’t working for you and you feel you’ll explode if you add any more
d)  the freedom to  add pauses if  the coach feels the clients in front of them  would benefit from  this
so.
Starting next week, it will look like this
week 1
Back squat 3’s ( I would start at 5’s but we have had quite a lot of that  recently)
Week 2
Back squat 2’s.  On the second day, after the 2’s you’ll strip weight down  to 70% and do one set of the 20 rep protocol
week 3
Back squat 5’s
repeat
We may repeat this 3 times then retest the total.
As an aside, Deadlifts will appear in the WoD, Ideally once a week.
(NB: Dedicated regimes, where people “buy in and buy out” normally have a de-load week. I’d suggest most clients randomly take weeks off anyway,  but we will be advising a self-administered week off or  “lite” week every 10 weeks or )

What's level 3 about?

One of the weird classes we run is  Off peak level 3. It requires no special skills to join as its an “output” class.
As an output class it focuses on your ability to  develop barbell and skill cycle whilst introducing the ability to do 2 wods.
To achieve this you simply need more time.
Snatching and the Olympic lifts really respond well to leisurely deliberate practice. The off peak 2-hour level 3 classes allow this.  Work, rest reflect: get quality practice. Often we olympic lift  for 45 minutes. After this, we work on “those skills”.  Everything from muscle up to handstand push up. From your 1st one to 5 in a row
To compete and excel you need to be able to cycle these skills( or, do more than one) Level 3 gives you the time to rest and repeat. It’s crucial. Then it’s on to 2 Wods.
 
We need to start to develop your ability to “back to back” workouts, even if your second wod is just having a gentle row. It’s as much about building mental capacity as physical.
Any level 2 person can go. The coaching is under your control. You can get lots of coaching help, or be left on your own. You can even switch skills and Woods.
It’s really 2 hours of fun practice with you in charge, but with help, if you want it.
For some, it’s useful that it’s a 2-hour session for the price of a normal class.
Well, its every Monday, Wednesday,  Friday 9 am to 11 am with access to every bit of kit!

Clean up your back act. For free!

It’s been a hard back week at CrossFit London. Most of you use your backs well, moderate your loads and maintain a tight core when lifting, meaning deadlifting isn’t an issue.
If deadlifting is an issue, it’s normally traced down to a lack of what Stuart McGill calls ” back hygiene”.  Poor back hygiene means you use your back when lifting, all the time! You also abuse your back every day, by slumping and slouching ( or overextending). I t could also mean you are ok, but you cannot control yourself in a WOD. You’ll pile through in a workout no matter what your body is telling you ( it’s ok, I did this too, but,  it’s tough being an asshole isn’t it!)
I’m an expert in this area because, for years, this is what I did.  Zero back hygiene. My back took everything I  threw at it. Until it broke.
If you have back pain, there are 5 key mistakes you probably make. I made them all
1) Having a slumping place. That’s the place where you mold furniture to the worst position for your back, and you slump there for hours.
for the record, here is my slumping place
2) I went searching for physio’s,  therapists and experts to fix my back. The reality is that they all fixed it.  I just went right on home and screwed it up again
3) I failed to take responsibility: I blamed CrossFit for setting the deadlift, furniture manufacturers for making soft sofa’s, girlfriends for buying soft sofa’s, the door of our flat being wide enough to allow a soft sofa into my life. I also loaded stress, poor diet and worry into the mix, to get top quality pain, I certainly didn’t moderate my exercise: anger drove my deadlift up to levels that would guarantee to destroy it.
4) A refusal to do the “guaranteed to work” boring therapy exercises
5) A refusal to realise that I was a “backaholic”. That I loved slumping and  I liked that sickly sweet pain that comes with 8 hours of hanging in your back. I think I also liked the sympathy I got, but that’s awful to confess (in fact, I’m going to edit that confession out).
The good news is this: unless you have back plague, or a demon has possessed your spine,  you can fix your back. Back plague, demonic possession otherwise known as  Red Flags are here: if you have these symptoms, you do have a medical condition (or a demon)  and you need help fast.
But, unless you are in the tiny minority who has something really wrong with their back , your pain is down to you, and you can fix it if you want or can be bothered to.
If any of our members are remotely interested, we will  go through the skills and drills  you need to fix your back on Sunday 16th July at 10.30am in the back room at 9 Malcolm Place E2, for free. The class “back hygeine” is on the booking schedule. You should be able to book in and the system won’t charge you!
Don’t worry about me!  If no one shows, I’ll drink coffee! After all, I’ve decided to manage my back. I’m so over needing it to hurt
 
 

Programming reflections

Developing our programming at CrossFit London is about merging the best of consistency with the benefits of variation; all topped off with obvious short and long term objectives.
It’s also about creating establish structures that deliver training gains.
Currently, we have a 3-day structure
Day 1) is titled All Elements and features the full squat version of the clean or the snatch. In the workout any elements can appear. As a regular skill we include some kipping practice
Day 2) is No Shoulder day where we alternate between the front squat and the Bulgarian split, and the back squat cycling with the deadlift plus the 1 legged Romanian deadlift.  The workout is limited to moves that do not include the shoulder. A shoulder rest day our skill focuses on the double under and the pistol.
Day 3) is No Squat day, currently upper-body orientated. We work through weighted pull ups/dips and cycle through the press, push press push jerk. The workout will not include a squat element- it needs a rest. Our regular skill is handstand based. It can be a 45 degree wall walk hold as your first step in getting upside down, to your first handstand push up, to handstand walking.
If you are following this programme, Day 4 is a rest day. However, as a gym with a big community, Day 4 is entitled Off Programme day.  We still schedule a great WOD, skill and strength for those who want to work 5 days straight through,  or it’s the only day they can make.
We are currently testing July’s  draft programme (about 2 weeks ahead of where you are) and are deep in designing the August/September programme. Interestingly, the 2 targets nudging our thought processes are Cindy and Isabelle. This has thrown up 2 issues
Issue 1 . Push-up homework
To achieve 20 rounds of Cindy, you need 200 push ups. It’s that simple and stark. We will prepare you by having push ups scattered throughout our preparatory workouts, but the reality is that you probably need more push-ups that we can ethically put in our sessions.
By ethically, I mean we cannot drag you, our beloved members, across London- often in rush hour- to charge you to do push-ups that you can do at home. Our dips, presses etc support this work. We set them, as in our mind you go to the gym to play with stuff you cannot reasonably have at home.
I have a plea. Over the next few week, please do push-ups at home. I’m hoping this week do 75 push-ups a day, the week after 100, 150, then 200. I need you to own 200.
This can be done as a hardcore task: three sets of 66! But it’s better to think about creating an easy habit. Five before you get in the bath, five in the  Starbucks queue, 10 while waiting for the bus, five before you brush your teeth. Why not post a clip of you  pushing up 9n public on the facebook group. Its now a thing.

When you come to do Cindy, I need you to know, know you can do 200 push ups.
Issue 2 Power snatch/power clean on day 3 WOD
The next issue is the power snatch versus squat snatch. I want to create 2  distinct pathways for these moves.  I want us to consistently pursue the squat snatch as a  thing of beauty, but develop the power/split snatching as the go- to workout move.
Day 1 will alternate (as it has done) between the squat snatch and squat clean. The focus will be on enough reps to develop the best form possible within the  20-30ish minutes allocated. For most, this is enough time to make substantial improvements (self-training and our Olympic lifting classes accommodate those who need more). Sometimes this will be delivered instructionally, other times as reflective individual feedback while you practice.  Often I suspect you’ll be sharing a bar and feeding back to fellow members as you watch them move. Peer coaching, under coaching supervision, can be very very useful as is using your phone’s camera to analyse and check form and spot weird habits in your classmates.
However, in the weeks  leading up to our Isabel test,  on day 3 in the workout, I  will often include a power snatch or a  power clean.
Yesterday we tested Isabel (30 snatches for time) as a day 3 WOD, therefore two days after the squat snatch element on day 1. It worked.  The next experiment will be to have squat cleans on day 1 followed by power clean in the WOD on day 3.  So over the next few months, note the pattern
Day 1  Squat Snatch dedicated session / Day 3 Power snatch in the workout
followed by
Day 1 Squat clean dedicated session / Day 3 power clean in the workout.
Obviously, we will vary the stimulus; different weights, different time domains, dumbbell versions.
Enjoy!