We get this question often with newer Crossfitters, as well as people looking to increase performance and/or volume to their current program. So I thought it was worthy of a little side post. What seems like a simple question to some often times feels like a loaded question to us.

Question: How often should I Crossfit?

Answer: Well…it depends…on quite a few things…How much do you feel you can recover from and what are your goals?

Things impairing recovery:

*Stress – Mental stress impairs workout recovery, whether you think it does or not. If you are typically high strung, you need to chill out and find some way to wind down

*Sleep – Sleep loss doesn’t always impair performance, but it DOES impair recovery. Period.

*Current Level of Athleticism: Have you been working out in the past? How long ago? What type of training? are you pretty regularly exercising, or are you relatively sedentary? Do you have any nagging injuries or really bad mobility issues? The level you are coming from will often dictate where I think you should take your next steps.

*Nutrition – Are you eating enough to recover? Are you eating quality foods to recover? Under-eating is actually one of the biggest issues i’ve seen through our members, but keep in mind what your goals are as well. I do understand that eating less will inevitably lead to fat loss. But there is a big problem with this, if you are training hard, you need calories to recover, its not a problem if you want lean body mass at any cost. But this is disastrous if you want to improve performance, get stronger, and fitter.

*Age and Genetic Capability to recover – There is something to be said about age and rate of recovery, know where you are at in life and be in tune with how fast you recover from workouts, some people naturally recover from workouts better than others.

*Goals – What are they? General Health and Longevity? or Performance? Goals impair your performance when they are unrealistically set. Whatever you are doing, make sure you select the appropriate intensity level and programming that suits you as a person. Choose timelines that make sense and a volume and intensity in your workouts that suit the rate of progress you should be trying for.

The amount of things that contribute to recovery do continue to go on, but I am going to stop there…

Lets answer this question as simply as I can without going on any more of a tangent than I already have…

 

These are just some very ROUGH guidelines, this does not take into account your current athletic level, lets take a person who has had a typical globo gym lifestyle for the last year, and has never done crossfit.

We are directing this athlete from the On Ramp, through to the general classes, then if they have any aspirations of Olympic Weightlifting, Crossfit Performance, or Strength Athlete.

 

Just starting? (1 – 3 months)

Type: Beginner – New Trainee, Fresh off the On Ramp, or Never done Crossfit before.

Frequency: 2-4 Days of CFSB Crossfit a week, using a schedule that suits your lifestyle. With no more than 3 consecutive days of training before you have a rest day.

Intensity: Low to Moderate in the beginning, get a feel for how well you recover

Extra Work: Mobility

Level Up:  When you feel you are recovering appropriately and/or you feel like you’d like to move along

 

Looking to pick up the pace? ( 3 – 9+ months)

Type: Beginner, General Health and Longevity

Frequency: 3-5 days of CFSB Crossfit a week into a schedule that suits your lifestyle. With no more than 3 consecutive days of training before you have a rest day.

Intenisty: Moderate to High, more often moderate intensity than high.

Extra Work: Mobility

Level Up:  When you feel you are recovering appropriately and/or you feel like you’d like to move along

 

Still Feeling good? Want to turn up the heat? (9 – 15+  months)

Type: General Health and Longevity, Performance

Frequency: Come in to our ideal CFSB Crossfit programming schedule Monday(on) Tuesday(on) Wednesday(rest) Thursday(on) Friday(on) Saturday(on) Sunday(off)

Intenisty: Moderate to high, move toward the higher intensity a little more often.

Extra Work: Mobility, Accessory work, Weakness Biased work, Throw in Active Rest on your Days off

Level Up:  When you feel you are recovering appropriately and/or you feel like the next step is in line with your goals.

 

So you are competing in the 5% of the class members who are higher performers…what now? (15 +)

Type: Performance for CROSSFIT – Competitive Blog Programming or Individualized Training.

Frequency: Begin a programming that is better suited for an individual who is looking to compete, either a competitive blog programming with the coaches, a best case scenario is completely individualized programming for the said athlete to completely address weaknesses and periodize training throughout the year(s) to come.

Intensity: moderate to high

Extra Work: mobility, active rest, sleep, cooking. performing is now a 2nd job for you.

Level Up:  When you feel you are recovering appropriately and you feel this type of programming suits your goals.

 

Or…do you want something different? ( 3 + months)

Type: Olympic Weightlifting or Strength Athlete

Frequency: Dependent on the program you are choosing.

Intensity: Moderate to high, get used to cutting the amount of crossfit cardio back and kicking the metcon habit a little.

Level Up:  When you feel like these things are more in line with what your goals are.

 

I could keep going on and on from there depending on your goals…but here are a few rough guidelines for the newer athlete.

Advertisements