Tuesday, October 11, 2011

I am not crazy. Anymore.

I love jerks.
So apparently my entire last year of training hasn’t been for much. I haven’t gotten stronger. I’m not leaner, or meaner (well, maybe meaner in the literal sense) or more badass. I am the same girl I was a year ago. And why is this a problem, you ask? Well, why the heck wouldn’t it be a problem? If you’re not improving, what the hell are you doing?

I’ll tell you what you are doing. You are training without goals. Without a means to an end. Without reason. Without purpose. And without purpose, you’re chasing your own tail.

I know, some of you train for the pure simple joy of “being in shape.” So your goal falls under the category of GPP or General Physical Preparedness. This means you just want to be basically physically fit. Which I believe is fine, in principal, but lacks in application. Does this mean that you will be pleased with reaching a goal and then never progressing in one particular area -- because you’re already in “shape?” Yes? No? If you’re happy with where you are at – then awesome for you! Or if you think you want more? Maybe you want to get better at one thing – a better runner, football player, lifter, volleyball player? Then do it!

So guess what? You’ve got to plan for more. You need to begin a phase of SPP, Specific Physical Preparedness, or Sports-Specific. In order to excel at one specific area of your training or your sport – then you will have to train specifically to become better in the areas of training that relate to that particular sport. You have to “specifically” reach for more.

My IRM’s have not significantly increased in over a year. Really nothing has changed much. I’m not worse or weaker, so I guess that is one positive. But I can only say that I have made gains in one area of training -- my skills. My lifting technique is better. Not stronger, but better. And I have managed to learn a few new CrossFit “tricks” -- kipping knees to elbows & toes to bar, the butterfly pull-up, kipping handstand pushups. I say “tricks” because when I started CF, these moves not only did not exist, but were considered “wrong” by ROM standards. But as with all things CF in general, some “elite” athlete will find a way to shorten WOD or cycle times and then HQ will say, “Hey, check this out. Learn this if you want to be badass. Even though 2 years ago, we told you that this was ‘improper movement.’” If you don’t believe me, ask someone who has been CrossFitting for more than 3 years. Ask them if they ever saw the split screen video of Annie Sakamoto doing the proper KTE (knees to elbows) and the “cheater” version. Its funny folks, the “cheater” version closely resemble the movement that is now “games standard.” Gosh, how times change. I get this. Keep up, or get lost. Okay, I just went off on tangent -- back to the topic at hand.

This brings us full circle. My goals changed. But my programming didn’t. I didn’t adjust anything. So what happened? Well. . . As I have stated. . . Nothing much happened, which is the problem. I wasn’t sticking to any one type of plan consistently. I was floating around doing a bit of this and a bit of that. So, I am living proof that if you don’t change up your programming based on your goals, and commit to your training regimen, you will not reach a different end.

Anyway, so what is my current plan? Well, I sat down and decided what is important to me right now. I want to be a stronger lifter, first and foremost. So, I am now following a Catalyst Athletics intermediate lifting program, which will be my primary focus. My secondary goal is to maintain my base fitness with CrossFit main site metcons and some running. My intent is to stay on this path until January, when I will see where my 1RM’s are and re-evaluate my goals again.

Albert Einstein said, “The definition of Insanity is: Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

I have a plan. I have a purpose. I have a goal. I’m not training “crazy” anymore.