Take a load off
There is a very fine line you need to walk when you exercise, and that line is the border between pushing yourself and pushing yourself too hard. A common misconception held by a lot of people is that you get stronger in the gym, but it’s really what happens to your body when you’re resting that builds strength, endurance and power, all the things you want if you’re trying to get less fluffy.
If you sandbag (give less-than-maximum effort) your WOD’s, you aren’t getting anything out of it and there is something inherently self-destructive about KNOWING that you aren’t pushing yourself as hard as you could. I don’t want to make this sound over-dramatic, but you are fostering weakness in yourself and that’s antithetical to even bothering to do this stuff!
At the same time, if you go too nuts, you’re going to hurt yourself. Case in point, I had my first Kettlebell Extreme class on Thursday morning (graduated myself out of the basics class, which was a darn good workout in and of itself) and it was a killer. It was tons of snatches, and a million other things, working the KB for a solid hour with very little let up. That’s a grip killer, but I also kissed a couple of my hard-earned lifting and pull-up calluses goodbye. My hands were shredded!
Some weirdos in the CrossFit community think that losing skin is cool, and while I certainly felt like a bit of a badass, I felt a loss less like a badass when I got home and screamed like a little girl the second the water hit my raw skin as I went to wash my hands. Way to go, dummy!
So, I will be investing in some weightlifting gloves. As a chiropractor, my hands are my “moneymakers,” as my wife calls them, and she’s right. Even if I didn’t rely on my hands to make a living and help others, who the hell wants to walk around with ripped up hands all the time? LOL
The same principle applies to how often to workout. You DO need to take breaks. Listen to your body. The classic CrossFit regimen is 3 days on, one day off. You may find you’re an every-other-day person. You may like to knock out five in a row and have the weekend off. Etc. But listen to your body.
Remember, you NEED your hands, your spine, your knees and all the other body parts you were born with, so push hard, but not TOO hard.
As a bonus, here is master Jeff Martone coaching the KB snatch. Now imagine doing more than 150 of them in a one-hour workout, along with other things. Not only can you crc