For new CrossFitters, just showing up consistently and working hard on almost any random week of WODs is enough to guarantee progress.
But as athletes build a base of strength and skill, programming becomes increasingly important. For more advanced athletes, “Constantly Varied” programming shouldn’t mean “Constantly Random”. Decades of research have demonstrated the benefit of hitting similar strength movements (like a back squat) more often, in a thoughtful rep and weight scheme. Simply put, it’s nearly impossible to achieve higher-level competency in those movements if they are not programmed in a progressive manner.
Our coaches have spent the last month looking at the gym’s collective Open results, our relative placing on different WODs within the Open, and our relative placement on other benchmark WODs against the CrossFit community as a whole. It’s clear that, while we’re better than average metabolically, we’re also weaker than average.
As a result, we’ve slowly been making changes to the way that we program our Experienced and Competition Classes, so that members in those classes can make the best progress over this new CF competitive year – first by building the strength that we need, in a linear, periodized way.
In the near future, you’ll notice that we’re focusing more than usual on lifts like the squat, press, deadlift and Olympic lifts, which translate to a broad number of other movements and WODs. Over the course of the year, month by month, that focus will broaden in a way that we think will help you become the best possible CrossFitters by next year’s Open. While not everyone trains with the intention of being a serious competitor in the Open, this annual event provides an excellent benchmark to see whether or not the gym is improving from the past year, as many WODs and movements are repeated.
One challenge in progressive programming is that, with seven WODs a week, it’s almost impossible to know which subset of WODs members are likely to attend. Therefore, starting next week, we’ll be moving the Experienced WOD (like the Competition WOD) to a schedule of 5 programmed days each week. Unlike the Competition classes, which simply don’t happen on rest days, we’ve scheduled certain Experienced WODs on two days of the week, to give members more ways of attending as many of the 5 WODs as possible:
EXPERIENCED WOD PROGRAMMING SCHEDULE
Sunday / Monday: Day 1 (Same WOD both days)
Tuesday: Day 2
Wednesday / Thursday: Day 3 (Same WOD both days)
Friday: Day 4
Saturday: Day 5
We recommend Experienced WOD athletes attend a minimum of 3 WODs a week, and no more than all 5. Your recovery and rest days are just as important as your training. If you must attend two days that would otherwise have the same WOD (Sunday and Monday, or Wednesday and Thursday), we’d suggest you attend a Beginner/All-Levels WOD, or a CFE WOD, on one of the two days.