You've been doing this how long?

You've been doing CrossFit how long now?

We are here to help you reach your goals. Period. Whether it’s weight loss, strength gain, CrossFit/Oly competitions, or just trying to look good naked, there are certain milestones you should focus on along the way.

MONTHS 1 - 3:
FOCUS: PROPER TECHNIQUE AND APPROPRIATE WEIGHTS
Your first 3 months should be all about perfecting correct, safe technique and finding appropriate weights for your current fitness level. Appropriate weight is something you can use without any risk of injury, overexertion or form breaking down during entirety of workout. The sheer volume of movements in class will generate results faster than trying to push too hard.

COMMON MISTAKES:

  • Too much weight too fast. Causes excessive resting during workouts and can lead to nagging injuries.

IF YOU HAVEN'T, YOU SHOULD:

  • Set up a nutrition plan. Abs are made in the kitchen. Your current habits could be hindering your progress or even hurting your body.


MONTHS 4 - 6:
FOCUS: INCREASE INTENSITY LEVELS, WORK ON FLEXIBILITY
At this point, your body should be beyond the initial shock of effective exercise. It’s time to start pushing harder. Try and complete workouts in the appropriate suggested time. Also, you should now specifically be addressing any flexibility weaknesses. Every class, your warmup should include stretches to improve your trouble areas (hips, ankles, shoulders, wrists, etc…) Ask, if you don’t know how.

COMMON MISTAKES:

  • Not enough weight. You will NOT reach any of your goals using light weights all the time. Weight loss, performance, and life in general, require muscle growth. You won’t develop muscles or tone without proper stimulus. Don’t be afraid of using heavier weights and more intensity while still moving safely.

  • Inconsistency. What worked before, won’t continue to work now. When you first start out, you’ll see improvements almost every class. However, after 3 months or so, your body adapts. If you’ve only been coming 2x/week, up it to 3x. If 3x, try adding a 4th. Taking more than 3 days off in a row should be avoided if at all possible. Your progress can potentially stall here if you become inconsistent or complacent during months 4-6.

IF YOU HAVEN'T, YOU SHOULD:

  • Find an in-class performance goal. Want your first pull up? Still can’t quite hit parallel squat depth? No more scaling wall balls? You may not necessarily accomplish it during the 4-6 month window, but you will definitely want to start spending dedicated time working toward it. Substitute an accessory time for specific goal work. We’d be happy to write a program for you to follow and, no, we won’t charge you for it.

  • Set up a nutrition plan. It’s definitely time now. You are past the improvements that exercise alone can bring. Adding even a small nutrition tweak will drastically change your body composition.

MONTHS 7 - 12:
FOCUS: Rx WORKOUTS AND OVER-THE-MOON GOALS
The second half of your first year can be, by far, the most fun and the most challenging. You’ve probably attempted an Rx workout and either failed miserably or were pleasantly surprised. Keep trying. Months 7-12 are all about finding new limits and creating over-the-moon goals.

COMMON MISTAKES:

  • Still labeling yourself as “new” or feeling defeated when you can’t keep up with “The OGs.” You aren’t new anymore. You are now being looked up to by new people. They are wowed by what you can do, even if you don’t think it’s that impressive. Similarly, you shouldn’t be able to out-lift or beat up on folks that’ve been CrossFitting for years. If you are, or are even close, rub it in their face. Clearly, they aren’t working hard enough or have stopped trying to improve.

  • Stop listening to coach demonstrations. You’ve heard it a million times, “Chest up, knees over toes, weight in heels” for your squat - so you stop paying attention to movement breakdowns. But, you aren’t an expert, you don’t move 100% correctly all the time. The second you stop focusing on the fundamentals is the second you stop improving your performance and are ripe for an injury.

IF YOU HAVEN'T, YOU SHOULD:

  • Attempt Rx weights or standards for most workouts. Unless the weights are above 85% of your 1RM, (If it is, lower it to 80%, then) give it a go. Even if you only get 1 Round or 1 point, it’ll be a hard-won victory. Confidence and success with heavy weight comes from moving heavy weight.

  • Dream up an over-the-moon goal. 400lb deadlift? Sub 1:50 half marathon? Complete Murph by yourself? The elusive muscle up? Whatever it is, come up with something that seems so out of reach, it’s silly. Then, continue to be amazed as you slowly creep toward it becoming a reality.

MONTHS 12 and BEYOND:
FOCUS: BECOME A SPECIALIST, FIND AN OUTSIDE OF CLASS GOAL/HOBBY
Congratulations, you’ve dedicated an entire year to your health and development. You should both inwardly and outwardly, not be the same person you were when you started. You fully recognize that CrossFit is not a weight loss program. Rather, it’s a confidence boosting, don’t need help with the groceries, if I can survive this - bring on the rest of my day type program.

What should you do now? Focus less on CrossFit. Yup. Become a specialist. Spend class time doing things that you enjoy doing. Never do a burpee again if you don’t want. Instead, replace class components with time spent becoming really good at certain aspect of CrossFit. Try dedicated Oly lifting. Get better at competing. Tackle a Tough Mudder or a sprint triathlon.

COMMON MISTAKES:

  • Assuming regular class workouts will get you to your goals. Sometimes they will, other times they won’t. Class workouts are designed to improve the general strength and ability of the masses, not help you win your triathlon age group. After 1 year of CF, classes and coaches become tools you leverage to help you accomplish things.

IF YOU HAVEN'T, YOU SHOULD:

  • Participate in challenging fitness activities outside of CrossFit. It could be a CF competition, a marathon, Spartan Race, or anything really. Find a hobby you enjoy and use our classes to help you do it to the best of your ability. Don’t just exercise - enjoy being healthy, functional, and capable.

Clay Stevens