Look better naked in less than 20 minutes a day!
If you do more than one wod a day, you’re dumb.
Yeah, I said it. We all fell in love with CrossFit for the simplicity of it. In less than 10 minutes you can work hard enough that your left flat on your back in a puddle of your own DNA.
Yet, somewhere along the way we lose site of that. We find ourselves needing more and more. If one workout is good, two must be better, and if two is better, three is even cooler.
But here’s the truth, you don’t need that second workout and chances are you’re not good enough for it either.
So, let’s have a caveat to all of this, some people do need more than one workout each day, CrossFit Games and Regional level athletes. But if you’re a four year Open competitor and cracking the top 1000 ain’t in the cards, you don’t. It doesn’t matter that Fraser and Katrin hit five workouts every day, they are professional athletes.
Look, I’m a purple belt in BJJ, I’ve won a few tournaments, but I don’t want to be inside the Octagon staring at Connor McGregor…well for the right price I would 😉
The same is true with CrossFit, just because the pros are doing it doesn’t mean you should be. The pros also sleep 9+ hours a night, track all of their foods, don’t have a “real” job, and keep stress to a minimum, do you do that? If you don’t answer yes to at least 3 of those, you don’t need more than one workout.
If I haven’t pissed you off enough to stop reading, good, your at least open minded.
I’m also not saying you shouldn’t have a goal of improving your fitness or making it to the next level, just understand most of us, need one workout every day to accomplish this. Volume doesn’t get you fit, intensity does.
If you’re in the Top 200 or even 300 and want to crack that Top 20 next year, you may need a second workout or a double day, but be real, don’t lie to yourself, are you really going to Regionals? Do you have you a legit shot?
I’ve been involved in CrossFit since 2006, I’ve seen it all. When I first started there was no Rogue or Mobility or knee sleeves. We simply showed up, did a few shoulder circles and threw down. Once in a while we’d do a “kitchen sink” workout like a bunch of idiots, but we had fun, one workout, we gave it our all, and we left.
When I owned three affiliates most workouts happened in 20 minutes or less in between classes and clients.
Then this idea of volume started creeping in. Strength and Metcon, programming from OPT, Outlaw, Competitors, and more. Every Regional athlete these days are selling special programming, and the truth is you don’t need it.
You need to put your ego aside, hop in the next class and try to win.
I’m not above it all, I’ve fallen into this more volume is better trap, I’ve had personal programming, I’ve followed dozens of sites, and the truth is it works, but it’s unnecessary. If you’re spending 2 hours or more every day training and you’re not making money, you need another hobby.
I also get it, the box is fun. Your friends go there, the cute girl you are into works out at the 7pm class. Get her number and call her.
Here’s what I learned from doing more than one workout per day:
For one, I was half assing most workouts. Knowing I had more to do after this workout, I would hold back, or if I tried to go hard on my second or third workout, I was already tired from the previous ones.
Secondly, I was always pretty beat up and tired. Granted, I’m older than many of you reading this, CrossFit is hard, your body can only handle so much. Don’t forget these pro athletes are having body work daily, you’re not.
Outside of class I was always “gaming” workouts and all of you do this to. “I’m gonna break the first round here so I don’t blow up” or “I’ll start at a steady pace so I don’t redline and can’t keep pushing.” Fuck that. You need to quit that. It’s not 3…2…1…let’s start at a moderate pace. It’s 3…2…1…GO!
Once I hopped back into classes, I have one goal every day, win! I want to beat every last one of these mother fuckers, even Noreen, that 70 year old woman in the back. To do that I need to push myself, no more gaming, just one speed!
What I found was I could almost always do more than I thought I could. Just because I did a max set of Power Cleans doesn’t mean I couldn’t do double under.
Side note, I love that argument of should I go touch and go or singles. If you’re having that conversation, you are not that good. Newsflash, touch and go are always faster, and if they are not for you, it’s because you need to get stronger or faster or most likely, both. It’s called gravity.
We have lost site of the goal of CrossFit, fitness and ultimately health. Coach Glassman defines Health as, “work capacity across broad time and modal domains across the years of your life.” Yes, while more volume might help you get fitter in the short term, it is no doubt a recipe for disaster long-term. Look no further than some past games athletes stating they can no longer to handle the volume it takes to compete at that level. These were people afforded the luxury of full-time training.
More volume is just a shortcut, sure you can argue it’s a shortcut to fitness, but like most shortcuts, you are making a sacrifice. That sacrifice is health. I challenge you to think long and hard. Is performing better at CrossFit right now more important than your long-term health? Cool, you won the 5pm WOD at your box, you can’t pick up your grandkids when you’re 70. Worth it?
Lastly for many of you reading this you may own a box or coach CrossFit at your local affiliate. Just remember, “Everything you do, your athletes will do one degree shittier!” as Dave Lipson eloquently put it.
Create a culture that you are proud to lead. It isn’t always easy and there will certainly be hard conversations to have, BUT everyone will benefit as a result, including you.
Denise Thomas recently summed it up well, next time you program a 5k run or a Heavy Back Squat day and only two people show up, don’t sweat it. Keep doing what you’re doing. These are important and extremely valuable. Take these two athletes that made training a priority and coach the hell out of them. Do not change the program. Believe in the CrossFit methodology. It is enough and it always will be.