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7 Lessons I Wish I’d Known Before I Started CrossFit

"I've been crossFit training now for 3 years and love the journey, but these 7 lessons would have hugely improved my progress had I known them at the start."

4. CROSSFIT TRAINING: DON’T ALWAYS GO ALL OUT

CrossFit advertises itself as the hardest training method in the world, even using a puking clown as a mascot. So as a beginner I was trapped in the thought that you have to destroy yourself in every single WOD to get the maximum benefit out of it. Combined with the fact that I attempted workouts 6 times a week, I did everything I could to prevent any strength gain. I think my body was very busy only with repairing the biggest damages.

Still I believe that sometimes you have to enter the Red Zone, because the mental toughness needs to be trained like a muscle. But this shouldn’t be the permanent approach. Especially if you are already sore or tired, giving 70 to 80% is still a lot.

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5. ACCEPT THAT THERE IS NOT SPACE FOR EVERYTHING

Besides the pressure of going crazy on every training session, there’s another “problem” that comes with CrossFit: There is always a ton of stuff to do, and whenever you got a new skill, there’s the next already waiting to be mastered. Since the sport is relatively new and fast developing, that fact is faced even by Games athlete.

It took me a while to realize and I used to put so much extra-work in my routine that got me totally lost. There was a time I spent hours just on Turkish Get up because I read it is good for shoulder stability. Then I’ve heard that the CrossFit-Training causes upper body imbalances that can only be cured by a lot of rowing movements so I did Pendlay rows almost every day.

Same for Box Step ups (good for the VMO which is important for a high Split Jerk), fat grip exercises, single leg exercises … in the end I sacrificed even sleep and recovery to work only on accessories. Today I focus on structured plans with a work load I can withstand, and trust in the fact that it is all about synergies and everything makes you stronger in everything.

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