Programming For the CrossFit Games Athlete Pt. II

The idea is to give the athlete the best preparation for CrossFit competitions, which will start in late February. You may notice the trend of a heavy focus on strength training and shorter conditioning efforts in both the preparation and in-season training template examples. This is in stark contrast to the longer “chipper-style” metabolic conditioning workouts that seem to be very popular amongst many affiliates and recreational CrossFit enthusiasts these days. The idea is that the athlete will likely be able to recover from the dedicates strength work and shorter metabolic work than a longer “WOD” and therefore will be able to make more headway in improving their strength, power, strength-endurance, and overall work capacity in all areas except for longest duration workouts. However, longer duration workouts will most certainly pop-up in competition and we will need to be ready for them. On the other hand, these long efforts tend to compromise recovery to a great degree and need to be intelligently implemented.

While it might be easy or even fashionable to program in a 5K run, 10K row, multi-modal chipper (see below for examples), these styles of workouts tend to test the athlete’s current level of fitness rather than develop certain physical qualities to a high degree. Additionally, they severely hamper the ability for the athlete to train frequently if they are programmed haphazardly and often.  Here are three different styles of “chippers” that popped up in last years competitive season:

Event 4 from the Regional in 2012

Event 6 from the Regional in 2012

 

Event 1 from the 2012 CrossFit Games

It would be incorrect of me to say, however, that the development of the ability to perform at a high level for a prolonged period of time is not important to the success of a CrossFit athlete. We do need to dip into these longer workouts occasionally, but we will do so during the in-season prep phase and program the preceding and subsequent days accordingly to prevent any potential injuries or brushes with overtraining from occurring. Optimally, these long workouts or days with multiple workouts will be held on a training day that is to be followed by a rest or active recovery day and the workload on the preceding day shouldn’t be so high that the athlete is coming into this grueling workout feeling beat up. The conditions within the competition are different, obviously, but the goal of a proper training program isn’t to just mimic and account for all possible scenarios the athlete could face. Rather, the goal is to keep the athlete in one piece while allowing them to realize their maximal potential in strength, power, endurance, and work capacity.

Once in a competition setting, the “rules” go out the window with regards to programming and recovery. An athlete might be asked to perform a max effort snatch just shortly after completing a long running-based workout in a competition. While he or she may have never done this exact workout, an athlete with a very developed strength base (especially in the Olympic lifts) and a good conditioning background will do just fine even though this is a “novel” test of their fitness. On the other hand, if this style of training was a regular part of the athlete’s program, perhaps he or she wouldn’t be able to adequately develop their snatch to a high enough level for competitive purposes. For example, if we were training a pitcher leading up the start of the baseball season we wouldn’t have them simulate a bunch of high pitch-count games on short rest during their training, even though this is something they may face during their season, as this would likely lead to an unnecessary injury. The potential benefits just don’t outweigh the potential risks in either scenario.

For these reasons and others (training economy, safety, recovery, etc.), I prefer to provide adequate levels of stimulation to get the athlete stronger and include enough skill and conditioning work to keep them competitive with other potential games athletes all while being mindful of overall training volume, stress, and recovery. I’ve done a lot of jabbering about why I am programming this athlete a certain way and I think now is a good time to show you exactly what his first three weeks look like. I’ll continue to update this series of articles with things I’m learning and each subsequent training block and/or week. Hope you’re enjoying this series!

-thefitcoach

Athlete X’s Training Template: Weeks 1-3

Accumulation Phase*

*Athlete is coming off a programmed deload week and is fresh

 

Week 1 Block 1 (W1/B1)

1)Day 1

a) Power- Snatch x 2 x 6 @ RPE 7-8

b) Strength-Bench Press x 5 x 5 @ RPE 8-9

c) Assistance- Ring Rows x max reps x 3 sets

d) WOD- “757” AMRAP in 6 minutes of: 7reps-5reps-7reps of: Ring Muscle Ups, ring  handstand push ups (if not possible double the reps and do regular HSPU)

e)GPP- AMRAP in 5 minutes of: 50 unbroken double unders, 10 butterfly pull ups

2) Day 2

a)Power- Clean + Jerk x 3 x 5 (jerk last rep of each set x 2) @ RPE 7-8

b)Strength- Back Squat x 5 x 5 @ RPE 7-8

c) Assistance- Clean Pulls x 5 x 3 @ RPE 7

d) WOD- 3 rounds of: 5 sand bag cleans (150-200lbs), sandbag carry x 100’, 20 KB swings (70lbs)

e) GPP- 7 prowler pushes @ 200’ with full recoveries

3) Day 3-OFF

4) Day 4

a) Power- Power Snatch x 1 every 30s x 15 reps @ RPE 9

b) Strength- Bench Press x 3 rep max @ RPE 9-10

c) Assistance- Press x 10 x 3 @ RPE 8-9

d) WOD- 12-9-6-3 -45# weighted chin ups, shoulder to overhead-185lbs

e) GPP- 4 500m row intervals @ 1:40-1:45pace (RPE 7 max)

5) Day 5

a) Power- none

b) Strength- Squat x 5 rep max @ RPE 9

c) Assistance- Reverse Hypers x 25 x 2 @ RPE 5-6

d) WOD- Practice alternating pistols until you’ve gone unbroken through 10 consecutive reps or 10 minutes, whatever comes first.

e) GPP- none

6) Day 6

a) Power- Snatch up to heavy single (no misses w/ 3 minutes between attempts), Clean and Jerk up to heavy single (no misses w/ 3 minutes between attempts) @ RPE 9

b) Strength-none

c) Assistance-none

d) WOD- Max rounds in 20 min of: 3 rope climbs, 10 power snatch 135, 20 calorie row

e) GPP- none

7) Day 7-OFF

Week 2 Block 1 (W2/B1)

1) Day 1

a) Power- Snatch x 2 x 6 @ RPE 7-8 (3 min rest max between)

b) Strength-Strict Press: 5 reps x 5 sets @ RPE 7-8

c) WOD- For time: 21-15-9 of: –close grip bench press @ BW, butterfly pull ups

d) Assistance- Ring Rows x 15  + face pulls x 20 + db curls x 15 x 3 sets

e) GPP- AMRAP in 5 minutes of: 3 muscle ups, 30 unbroken double unders (set does not count unless all are unbroken)

2) Day 2

a) Power- Clean + Jerk x 2 x 5 (jerk last rep of each set for a double) @ RPE 7-8

b) Strength- Back Squat x 5 x 3 sets @ RPE 8

c) Assistance- Deadlift x 5 x 1 set @ RPE 9

d) WOD- 3 rounds of: 3 turkish get ups each side (2 pood), 6 kb snatches on each arm (2 pood), 12 KB swings (2 pood) (10 minute time limit)

e) GPP- 200’ farmers walk (heavy) x 7 rounds w/ 1:30 recovery

3) Day 3-OFF

4) Day 4

a) Power- Power Snatch x 1 every 30s x 15 reps @ RPE 9

b) Strength- Press x 3 rep max @ RPE 10, 1 set x 12-15 @ RPE 9

c) WOD:  3 rounds of: 15 parallete hand stand pushups, 15 calories on the rower

d) Assistance- Ring rows x 15 + dips x 15 + DB curls x 15

e) GPP- Handstand walks x 100’, 10 chest to bar pull ups (strict) x max rounds in 8 minutes

5) Day 5

a) Power- none

b) Strength- Squat x 3 rep max @ RPE 9, back off set x 12-20 @ RPE 9

c) Assistance- Reverse Hypers x 25 x 2 @ RPE 5-6

d) WOD- Max burpees in 5 minutes or 100 reps, whichever comes first

e) GPP- none

6) Day 6

a) Power- Snatch up to heavy single (no misses w/ 3 minutes between attempts), Clean and Jerk up to heavy single (no misses w/ 3 minutes between attempts) @ RPE 9

b) Strength-none

c) Assistance-none

d) WOD- AMRAP in 20 min of: run 400m, row 500m, 20 wall balls at 20lbs, 20 toes to bar

e) GPP- none

7) Day 7-OFF

Week 3 Block 1 –Accumulation Phase (Final Week)

1) Day 1

a) Power- Snatch x 1 x 10 @ RPE 9(On a 60s clock)

b) Strength-Bench Press: up to 5  @ RPE 9, 2 sets x 6 reps @ ~5% less than heavy set of 5

c) WOD- For time: 15-12-9 power snatch @ 135, hand stand pushups (unbroken sets)

d) Assistance- Ring Rows x 15  + face pulls x 20 + db curls x 15 x 3 sets

e) GPP- AMRAP in 8 minutes: 20 calorie row, 20 double unders

2) Day 2

a) Power- Clean + Jerk x 2 x 6 (jerk last rep of each set)) @ RPE 8

b) Strength- Back Squat up to 5 reps @ RPE 8-9, 2 sets x 6 reps @ -5-10% of heavy set of 5

c) WOD: AMRAP in 7 minutes of: 7 front squats @ 155, 14 burpees, 200’ bear crawl

d) Assistance-  3 rounds of: GHR x 10, toes to bar x 10, banded terminal knee extensions x 10, plank x 1 minute

e) GPP- Alternate prowler pushes on high and low handles (100’ high, 100’ low) w/ moderate weight x 7 rounds w/ 1:30 recovery

3) Day 3-OFF

4) Day 4

a) Power- Jerk x 2 x 5 @ RPE 8-9

b) Strength- Press up to 5 reps @ RPE 10, 2 sets x 6 reps @-5% from the heavy set of 5

c) WOD- 1 round of: AMRAP in 3 minutes: ring muscle ups, 2 minutes: burpees, 1 minute: double unders

d) Assistance- Ring rows x 15 + DB curls x 15+ band tricep press downs x 15

e) GPP- Row 500m @ 1:38-1:42 pace x 3 rounds w/ 2 min rest in between

5) Day 5 Off

6) Day 6

a) Power- Snatch up to heavy single (no misses w/ 3 minutes between attempts), Clean and Jerk up to heavy single (no misses w/ 3 minutes between attempts) @ RPE 10

b) Strength-Back squat up to a heavy double @ RPE 9, back off sets x 2 x 4 (-5% from heavy set)

c) Assistance-none

d) WOD- AMRAP in 7 minutes of:

100lb thruster x 3 reps

3 chest to bar pull ups

100lb thruster x 6 reps

6 chest to bar pullups

100lb thruster x 9 reps

9 chest to bar pullups

continue adding 3 reps of each until time expires

e) GPP- none

7) Day 7

a) Swim x 500m x 2 rounds

Deload week to come this following week, then 2 weeks of realization (peaking).

 

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4 thoughts on “Programming For the CrossFit Games Athlete Pt. II

  1. Pingback: Programming For the CrossFit Games Athlete Part 7 | thefitcoach

  2. Pingback: Programming For the CrossFit Games Athlete Part 5 | thefitcoach

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