Thoughts on training, nutrition, and general physical preparedness from Jacob "BullFrog" Tsypkin and Russ Greene.
Wednesday, 28 October 2009
Resting for Fitness.
The box Pete is sitting on has magical powers: It can make you stronger and faster.
Most CrossFitters don’t like to rest.They don’t like to rest on Rest Days, in between sets of heavy lifting, or in between sprints.
These athletes would be fitter if they learned to rest.
This article will focus on resting during workouts.If you want to apply near-maximal power output multiple times in a workout, you will have to take substantial rest periods in between efforts.
I’m sure you’ve seen guys doing “heavy” squats taking 30 second rests in between each set.When you see a workout that says something like Deadlift 3-3-3-3-3 or Snatch 1-1-1-1-1 you should not be rushing the rest periods.It’s not a metcon workout.
Hit each set with as much load as you possibly can, then sit down.Don’t get up for a few minutes.You’re not trying to improve your endurance here; you’re trying to get stronger.
If you still want to get some metcon, because it is a weak point or because you just like it, then do some double-unders when you’re done with the heavy sets.After 200 or so you may regret that decision.
Rest periods are vital for effective sprint workouts as well.I see too many people running 100m sprints with 30 second rest periods in a mistaken effort to get faster.While such workouts are great for improving conditioning, they are not going to allow you run quickly enough to make progress in your speed or power.If you want to run fast, you need to rest for a while in between efforts.A smarter alternative would be to run five sets of 100m with 3-5 minute rests in between each set.
I think a lot of CrossFitters don’t understand what fast running is.I keep hearing that a 60 second 400m is fast.While certainly respectable, it’s not a fast time.The sad thing is that it’s not these athletes’ lack of general fitness which prevents them from running fast, but rather their lack of appreciation for sprinting as a discipline.They don’t know how fast it is possible to run, or how much faster they would run if they took long rest periods and approached each set with full intensity.A 400m sprint shouldn’t leave you mildly out of breath; it should leave you barely alive just like "Fran" or "Grace."
The key principle here is that rest periods allow for higher intensity.By resting between efforts, you’re not being weak, you’re training smart. Your reward will be greater strength, power and speed.