Overview What’s up all you Cool Fit Dudes & Chicks. (is THAT what Cfdc stands for? Probably!) We are thrilled about your next phase of programming! The words below outline the specifics, but before we get to the nitty-gritty, let’s talk about the shift in routine. Our first quarter program followed a reliable routine: Squat/Pull Monday, Anaerobic Conditioning Tuesday, Endurance Wednesday, yada- yada, you know it by heart now. That was a 6 day plan.
In Q2, we are going to follow a 7 day plan. That means with only 6 training days/week (we’re closed on Sunday) you won’t see the same style of training two Monday’s in a row, or any other day, for that matter. To put it simply, if you could only train, say, on Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday in the last phase, you missed most of the short burst conditioning. In this next phase, you’ll get to experience the breadth and depth of a balanced program regardless of your routine. And that’s the aim of the program, to present to each individual broad exposure to different energy systems, so you can improve your strength, skills, power, and endurance.
Now, for the nitty gritty!
Progression Variability In general, you can progress any movement with load, reps, tempo, complexity, or even rest time. The more variables, the less you can understand your objective progress. We’ve recently followed a fairly linear progression for strength. Increase the load, while decreasing the reps, while maintaining the same amount of rest. It works. It makes sense. We saw great progress! But it’s also pretty easy. Of course, with less reps you can lift more weight. The progress here isn’t actually seen until the retest. In Q2, we’ll use only one variable: LOAD. With this single variable, we should see progress each week, albeit more incremental. Put simply, the sets and reps and rest will remain the same from week to week, while the load is the only variable. Ideally, we see the load go up - in order to do that, we’ll need to make very small jumps each week. In some cases, we may need to back off. This is ok. Quality is the true target, because that results in long term progress. We will follow this progression until it stops working or the phase is complete. If we see a stall out before completion, we will add another variable to incite progress.
Now, with the specific benchmark tests!
5 Rep Max Pendlay Row We’ve trained the vertical pull consistently in every phase over the last year (that’s the pull up and all its vertical variations). In this phase, we’ll introduce the Pendlay Row for max load. What’s a Pendlay Row? Imagine you’re at the bottom of a Romanian Deadlift. Instead of standing the bar up, you’ll maintain a rigid spine + lower body and pull the bar to your chest. After testing your 5 rep max, we’ll follow a 5x5 progression based on the percentage of your test. Again, the only variable will be the increase in load from week-to-week.
5 Rep Max Deadlift On the same day as the Pendlay Row, now that your posterior chain has warmed up and become accustomed to the rigidity needed to safely pull from the ground, we will train the Deadlift. One of the most useful and powerful movements you can express. If done properly, it can carry over to anything you care about (picking up your children, dog food, any olympic lift, sprint starts, speed, etc). The deadlift will also follow a 5x5 linear progression.
3 Rep Max Strict Press Have you figured out we like the idea of a strong core? Just as the Row & Deadlift demand a strong core (rigid midline), so does the overhead press. Tighten up, brace the air through your ribs and midline to create a strong foundation, and press! If you love putting things in the overhead bin to show off in a plane, train, or automobile, this is your lift. The Strict Press will follow a linear 3x5 progression.
20 Rep Max Back Squat Oh, hello you oddball, you. Why 20 reps, why?! It might be the most efficient way to increase your, well, fortitude. We just increased the nonsense out of our 1 rep maxes in Q1. Great job! Now, we build stamina. A 20 Rep Max Back Squat only requires 1 appropriately loaded set to be effective. And with it, almost guaranteed progress. In what? Could be several things. Quite seriously, your mental toughness. A big set requires not only strength, but muscular endurance. You will likely find yourself huffing and puffing by the end, so there’s arguably a metabolic benefit as well.
1 Rep Max Clean & Snatch The intent here is explosive power, not high skill. Most of you will see “Power Clean” or “Power Snatch” as your prescription. This is to allow you to create the most vertical power you can so you can receive the bar almost standing up. This requires less skill than the squat variation. If you have the skillset to fully extend your hips before quickly descending under the bar to a full squat, you are welcome to use that approach (and this will be the Overboard prescription). Just as a fun reminder for all things we learn, we must understand and practice the proper mechanics before adding intensity (expressed in this case by load and range of motion). The progression here will follow a variable in reps, and likely a decrease in load. Each week we will see either the clean or the snatch, not both. Each time it shows up it will be “Build to a heavy single,” the next time will be “build to a heavy double,” then “triple.” From there we will eventually work our way back to a single by the end of the phase. (If you’d like to see more olympic weightlifting, say, multiple times a week, ask your coach about The Overboard Program.) 5 Rep Max Bench Press Another movement with lots of carry-over! Not just to other movements but more important things like, I don’t know, real life! The bench press can help improve your ability to perform push ups, get up on a surfboard, some cool dance moves probably, and even make burpees easier. Another important factor is the balance of strength within the shoulder. This will counter the Pendlay Row and all other pulling movements.
Max Height Single Leg Step Down (Heel Tap) Balance and range of motion are the key targets here. This is a low-intensity assessment. Most of us will find a discrepancy between legs. The goal will be to increase in range of motion in each leg, meaning healthier joint movement through the hip, knee, and ankle along with symmetry between sides. The prescription is simple and important that it’s adhered to. You’ll start with one leg standing on a small plate or box, the entire foot, especially the heel, must remain in contact with this elevated surface. Your other leg is hanging free, kept vertical, and the toes pulled up. This way, you have a consistent distance to step down, and the heel will be the only part of the non-working foot to touch the ground. Because the non-working leg is kept straight, it cannot assist in the step up. Once you are back to the starting position, you’ve completed the rep and may move to a high elevation. Once you reach a height that you can no longer maintain the standards, that’s your score.
“Shiner” “Shiner” will be our only mixed modal metabolic conditioning test in Q2. We will combine a run with a pull, a push and a squat for 3 rounds. It’s a full body blast and should test everything from endurance to strength and skill for some. We will not follow a specific progression for this test. Instead, we’ll blend more combinations together on metabolic conditioning days and MAP days to compliment our strength work. This should lead to objective progress in the retest. And that’s a nice segue to “MAP work.”
Maximum Aerobic Power Work Between most of our strength training days, you’ll see “MAP” with a number 1-10. MAP means Maximum Aerobic Power. This means we want you to work consistently at the highest sustainable power, given the amount of time you work and rest. The numbers are just hints to how long you’ll be working and resting. For instance, MAP 1 is 30 seconds on and 30 seconds off. MAP 5 is 3 minutes of work with 2-3 minutes of rest. MAP 10 is 60 minutes+, but you can think of it simply as “zone 1” or sustainable efforts with no end in sight. And this brings us to a fun addition to the Q2 phase. On MAP 10 days,
you will have the option to continue your workout well beyond the restrictions of class times. The first installment is in the second week, after initial testing. You’ll have the option to work for 40-90 minutes! (Please be courteous to those in classes following yours if they need your equipment.)
Auxiliary Training After the initial tests, you’ll see a major difference in the auxiliary strength work. In the past, we’ve focused on balancing opposing patterns or muscle groups. This allows for more sustainable efforts without much interference. In Q2, we are going to interfere on purpose! For instance, on a Press and Squat day, we will follow that up with either all pressing auxiliary or all squatting auxiliary, not both. In other words, one muscle group or pattern will get all the attention.
Freedom of Variance With the change in auxiliary programming and the spreading out of strength days, this will allow our MAP work and mixed modal metcons to have more variance and creativity. In Q1, after a squatting and pulling day, we worked those patterns so hard that it was sensible to not repeat them again for up to 3 days to allow recovery. Now, if we are on a pressing and squatting day and the auxiliary is all squatting, it’s fair to say we can still press the next day or 2 without overtraining that pattern. We know you all like to train all week, but sometimes life interferes. This system should allow you to stay balanced even if a day is missed that wasn’t meant to be. And, if you are training every day, you can do so without feeling redundancy. Magic!
Muted Saturday Even though we have 6 days to train, Saturday’s won’t be included in the benchmark progressions. This accomplishes 2 things:
If Saturday is your rest day, you won’t miss any important training days.
Saturday’s can maintain the high energy, low barrier of entry, fun, partner-style workouts you’re accustomed to. Woohoo! Overboard
Overboard will follow the same pattern from above for the foundation of its training. The only major difference is that your “Shiner” will be pull ups, handstand push ups, and overhead squats at a moderate load. Also, as mentioned, you will be prescribed squat cleans and snatches, not power. You can still expect to see a dose of all of the high skills each week, from gymnastics to OLY skills and plenty more metcons to compliment the strength work of the main track.