Strength: Every 20 seconds for 5 minutes:
1 Power Clean @ 80% (of max Clean any style)
– then –
9 Bar Muscle-Ups
9 Hang Squat Clean to Thrusters (115/75)
7 Bar Muscle-Ups
7 Hang Squat Clean to Thrusters (115/75)
5 Bar Muscle-Ups
5 Hang Squat Clean to Thrusters (115/75)
There are pros and cons to using the whiteboards the way we do. As coaches, we’ve got mixed feelings about them and it’s important to have the right perspective.
We like whiteboards (and the scores written therein) because we’re geeks. We know that no claims about the efficacy of any fitness program can be made without data to support it. Our whiteboards provide us with the very data necessary to measure any progress we’ve made. It’s why we get so weird about writing all the little details about your wod – what movements you scaled or subbed. Chances are, any fitness program that isn’t using empirical data to measure its effectiveness 1) isn’t serious about actually making you more fit, or 2) is mistaken about what fitness actually is, and relies on anecdotal, non-evidential markers to justify their methods. Here, at CrossFit Merced, we’ve been around for nearly 2 years and, with the exception of 2 days, we’ve posted your scores to our comments after every workout. Because of this, we’ve got loads of data that support the safety, efficacy, and efficiency of our program. That’s the main reason we use them – as a measurement tool for numbers geeks who want to be sure that what we’re doing is working.
We also like the whiteboards because we’re competitive. Greg Glassman, the founder of CrossFit, stated “Men will kill for points.” Yes, the statement is hyperbole, but it’s an insightful look into an important motivational concept. Personally, I’ve had lots of days where I didn’t feel like giving it my best, but, because I knew that Eddie and Jason were going to come in and bust their tails to try to beat me, I pushed myself a bit harder. Sometimes, after I get my butt kicked in a WOD that I know I should have done well in, it’s a wake-up call to re-focus and start pushing myself harder. We love it when 2 or more of you compete with each other to go faster. Competition is a great way to get motivated to go as hard as possible.
There are also drawbacks, though.
The point of CrossFit is to make friends and be part of an amazing community of people that are willing to work hard, show grit, and get fit . Whiteboards can cause us to miss the point. Often, we see athletes make poor decisions because they are thinking about the whiteboard. Sometimes we’ll see someone use too light of a load on the bar for the sake of going faster – just to beat their whiteboard rival. Point missed. Sometimes we’ll see someone use to heavy of a load on the bar, and labor through 15 minutes of bad movement that should have taken 5, so they can write “Rx” next to their name. We want you to be strong; we want you to be fast. There will be opportunities for you to have it all, but we must insist that you have a big-picture perspective about your goals. Sometimes it’s better to take your lumps today (whether that mean lightening to go faster, or making it heavy even if you must slow down) so that you can excel in the future. Don’t let the whiteboard stop you from making the right decisions about how you approach your workout.
I’m going to let you in on a little bit of insight that might come as a surprise: The only reason we care about your score is so we can measure your progress. We don’t care how long it took you to do the workout… UNLESS you cheat. It’s true. As long as you’re giving your best, we don’t care if it took you 7 or 9 minutes UNLESS you cheat.
Which brings me to a tangent point: Whether you think so or not, we know when you’re cheating. We don’t even care when you do, except for the fact that our precious data is now flawed. See above 😉
Please be honest about your scores. If you think you may have mis-counted, it’s no big deal, just let us know. If the WOD calls for 20 Burpees and you only do 10 because (of course) you hate burpees, it’s cool – just tell us that you scaled the reps. Remember, you don’t have to do anything you don’t want to do, but help us get our data right. We’re geeks, remember?