WOD May 15, 2012
Overhead Press: 5-5-5-5-5
Push Press: 3-3-3-3-3
Push Jerk: 1-1-1-1-1
I will be the first to admit that strength days are not exactly what people think of when they think of CrossFit. There have been a number of times when someone wants to come check out a class and I check to make sure that it isn’t a strength day so they will be sure to get a good show.
As for what CrossFit athletes think, strength days are not exactly empowering. You set up for a solid overhead press, take the bar out of the rack, fill your lungs up and tighten down your gut, then you press as hard as you can and…!!! The bar goes to your face, floats there for a moment, then goes back down to your shoulders. No rep, your done, failed lift.
It does not feel good. It feels downright shitty. I hate attempting something and failing and I think we all do. That is why metcons feel so good (even if it’s miserable the entire time). You may not be able to get a rep, but you take a few breaths, try again, and keep going until eventually the time runs out or you finish all the work. You may not get the time you want or the rounds you would like, but you finish, you put everything on the line, and it fills good. That’s why strength workouts suck, because sometimes you put everything out on the line and you just can’t pull a heavy number.
But as hard as it is to fail during a strength workout, it’s important. You will hear us say over and over again, “you fail at the limits of your experience”. It’s our way of getting you to push yourself and try new things. Sometimes it’s a heavier weight, sometimes it’s a more difficult scaling during a WOD, and it always makes the workout harder. But you get through and you gain a new limit. Strength workouts are no different. It’s just as important during a strength workout to push yourself to your limits and every now and then come up with a failed rep. When you can do that, if you nothing else at the very least you learn what your limit is and what you are truly capable of. And that knowledge, being able to definitively say that you can pull a X lbs deadlift or a Y lbs push press, that is something awesome to have. And something awesome to write down in your success journal.
When was your last strength WOD? Did you fail a rep? What was your limit?