Overreaching

Nothing feels better than going to bed after a productive day and a hard WOD.  And you are starting to get good at this CrossFit stuff, so you are coming in more and more often to get your workout in.  But after going hard for a while, you find yourself not able to fall asleep.  And even when you do sleep, you still feel tired.  You start getting headaches throughout the day, and despite your attention to your nutrition, you feel consistently drained and your performance suddenly drops.  What is happening?  Chances are, you are overreaching.

Overreaching (referred to as "overtraining" in more significant doses) is inevitable for athletes who don't take time to recover properly between workouts.  How will you know if you are overtraining or overreaching?  You can feel the effects of both of these conditions physically, psychologically and in your workout performance.

Physically:

  • Increased resting heart rate
  • Decreased muscular strength
  • Chronic muscle soreness
  • Increased injury rate
  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Headaches
  • Decreased appetite
  • Frequent minor infections/colds
     

Psychologically:

  • Depression
  • Irritability
  • Loss of motivation/enthusiasm
     

Performance:

  • Decreased time for onset of fatigue
  • Decreased work capacity
  • Inability to complete workouts
  • Delayed recovery
     

So how do you reverse the effects?  Take time to recover!  Recovery between workouts is important, but when you are overtrained, more time is necessary to allow your body to recuperate.  With mild overtraining, a short period of rest and recovery – two weeks or less should be sufficient.  During your recovery time, make sure to pay close attention to keep yourself properly hydrated and well nourished.  You should also treat yourself to a sports massage if your budget allows.

The bottom line is recovery is an essential part of any workout regimen - professional, elite, or novice.  Make sure you are getting yours too.

CrossFit Quiz: Which Person are You?

Happy hump day!  For a light-hearted CrossFit read, check out this magazine article from WOD Magazine.

Whilst CrossFit gyms are different to normal gyms, there is one similarity. The gym-goer…

Without a doubt, the gym is a place where you can learn a lot about people. See them at their best or their worst. Regardless you always see people give it their all.

However there are some stereotypes that make you scratch your head, that keep you wondering if maybe you are the odd one out.

Here are our 10 types of people you will find in a CrossFit gym.

CAPTAIN OBLIVIOUS

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Captain Oblivious is that one guy or girl who never really knows what’s going on, and they’re cool with that. This guy always asks “what are we doing” even after the coach has explained it. He usually strikes about 15 minutes into the session with “have we started yet?”

The great thing about Captain Oblivious is his cruisy attitude and friendly sense of humour. Need a spot? That’s cool, this guy will help.

THE CHALK MONSTER

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Going for a run? Better chalk up. We aren’t sure who the chalk monster is, because they are usually covered in chalk. Whether it’s running, burpees or skipping, expect a cloud of dust to follow the monster everywhere.

If you are ever too far away from the chalk bucket and need to chalk-up, give them a high five and not only do you look like you are encouraging them, but you’re also getting enough chalk to last you the whole workout.

THE CROP DUSTER

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You’re in the middle of a set of 20 Kettlebell Swings then BAM! It hits our of nowhere. Is this it? Is this where it ends? Is that protein shake and broccoli you can smell?

The Crop Duster is an elusive type who is long gone by the time anyone catches on, and by that time it’s too late. Standing downwind from the fan may keep you cool during your workout, but it could send the ‘crop duster special’ your way.

GUCCI GEAR

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Sporting all the new gear, from the newest shoes, knee sleeves, a bright belt and flashy clothing. Gucci is the one covered in all the CrossFit brands like every session is a photo shoot.

Gucci may not be the fittest, but they have passion and they live and breathe CrossFit. Need some new shoes? Gucci has a pair you can try on.

THE REP CHEATER

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The rep-cheater somehow started their box jumps after you but finished ahead of you. Boasting some superhuman fast times in their workouts, the rep-cheater is always on top of the whiteboard.

Usually a capable CrossFitter, the competitive side comes out and 1, 2, 3 becomes 5, 10, 15 reps. If you are looking for someone to chase then the rep-cheater has you covered.

THE SCREAMER

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You’re off with the fairies just thinking about what’s for dinner when like a banshee, the screamer let’s one rip! After you pick your heart up from the floor, you look around and see the screamer with a heavy barbell overhead. It’s ok though, she set a new personal best.

Need a pump up in class, the screamer will amp you up and help you smash through a workout.

THE SELFIE QUEEN

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Snapchat or Instagram? It doesn’t matter, the selfie-queen is on both and has already bombarded their friends with their duck pouting, peace sign pictures. Warm up? What’s that? Cool Down and Stretch? Nah… The phone comes out and bam you just got caught picking your wedgie in the background.

If you need someone to film your lifts, the selfie queen probably has her tripod and knows enough about lighting to catch your best angle.

THE SWEATER

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It’s the end of the workout and high fives all-round. When you give the sweater some love you feel like Jessie from ‘Free Willy’ when the Whale jumps over the rocks at the end. Doing a partner workout with the sweater can be testing, especially when there is wall balls and you share the same ball.

The sweater is awesome when… um… I’ll get back to you.

THE TIN MAN

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The tin man doesn’t lack a heart, they have that. However, years of no stretching has caught up and you can hear them moving from the other end of the gym. Bring a can of WD-40 because you may need it for the old tin man.

Need some inspiration from someone who just gives it their all despite their limited mobility and bubble wrap joints? The tin man works around their limits and shows you that anyone can do CrossFit.

MR TOO SEXY

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The coach calls 3..2..1..GO! Next minute the shirt goes flying. Wait! Did they even come in with a shirt?

Mr Too Sexy is the king of aerodynamics and can probably give you advice on the best waxing tips with no ingrowns.

Originally published by CrossFit Border – republished with permission.

 

 

 

Free First Friday classes tomorrow!

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Are you curious about CrossFit? Have your friends, family, and co-workers been observing the first rule of CrossFit (Always talk about CrossFit)? Wondering what this crazy thing is all about?

United Barbell - CrossFit SOMA has been serving SF since 2010. We are committed to inclusive, positive coaching for humans of every athletic level from novice to competitor.

On the first Friday of each month, we program a beginner-friendly workout so that anyone can come and try it out for FREE!

UB athletes - feel free to bring in your pals to any class. Just make sure they sign the waiver!

On Fridays we have classes at 6:30am, 7:30am, 12pm, 5pm, and 6pm. Come on by!

 

Olivia Graff

Olivia's athletic origins lie in gymnastics and circus arts. After finding CrossFit in 2007, she became obsessed, and three years later left her IT career and opened United Barbell. Olivia is particularly passionate about helping people new to fitness to find joy in their growing athletic abilities. Since the birth of her daughter, Isis, in 2013, Olivia can add helping little ones find their athletic path to her list of passions.

Meet Your Coach: Chris!

If you've met him, you love him... and if you haven't met him, you will. He's been known as the Governor of UB for many years, and through his time here has been an enthusiastic learner, competitor, community leader, mentor, and now, a bonafide Coach! Chris is still in the process of completing his internship here at UB, but this weekend he will be coaching his first classes on Sunday at 9:30am and 10:30am. 


How long have you been training? 

I have been training for many years which included  Muay Thai, playing baseball, running and CrossFit.

   If you could share just one piece of knowledge to someone just starting out in their fitness journey what would it be?      Get a coach and be consistent and disciplined in the movement. Learn the mechanics behind the movement. Just because you learned it off of YouTube doesn’t mean that you are doing the movement correctly. And don’t be afraid to ask for help. There are many people who want to help and are more than capable of doing so.     

If you could share just one piece of knowledge to someone just starting out in their fitness journey what would it be?

Get a coach and be consistent and disciplined in the movement. Learn the mechanics behind the movement. Just because you learned it off of YouTube doesn’t mean that you are doing the movement correctly. And don’t be afraid to ask for help. There are many people who want to help and are more than capable of doing so.

 

What is your workout program?

I train five days a week and my program consist of a training program developed by Josh Akiona of CrossFit 808 in Honolulu and by Shannon dePeralta of CrossFit 604 (Coach Shannon).

Do you play sports?

I swim for recovery on Sundays at the Y on the Embarcadero.

Do you eat a particular diet or follow a specific diet philosophy?

Yep. I weigh and measure my food and follow my macro plan developed by Ashley Smith, of Working Against Gravity and connect with Nikki Staley to make any tweaks ever now and then.

How often do you train?

Five days a week and occasionally six.

How often in training do you hit a new PR or acquire a new skill?

Hm. Over the past couple of years, I have really been focussed on learning to move better and move more efficiently. This really means getting after gymnastics and being focused on shapes (yes Shannon, I’m listening), and developing strength in positions via pause drills developed by Shaheen Hashemian aka ‘Shah The Monster.’

What do you find contributes to your fitness the most?

Having a plan prepared and knowing in advance what I am training.  Having an extensive warm up. Having a disciplined meal plan. Seeking out various coaches to make slight adjustments or to have eyes on you (shout out to CrossFit Dave, Sam Smith aka Drake, and Jon Hanna) and having a supportive community and friends (shout out to Kim, Cam, Quinn, Doc, Hayley, Steve, Sean ‘The Canadian’ Falconer, Sunli ‘The Situation’ Guo, Zoe, Jon, Max, Chelsea, Alfredo ‘I’m 1/4 Black’ Ramirez, Royal, Whitt, Lisa and Jeremy Reither, Jo and Britt, Terry ’Ter Bear’ Kezer, Mike ‘The Bicep Program’ Coutermarsh, Chad Kindred, Patrick ‘P-Dawg’ Bedwell, Marek, Skyler, Adrian, Loryn, Brigitte and Sach) and having some phenomenal coaches/friends along the way: Jenny, Jon Schoenherr, Nikki Staley, Steve Wong, James Kusama, Shann, Josh and of course, the one and only Coach Trent ‘T- Pain’ Simmons.

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What is your next strength /fitness/skill goal to be achieved?

Developing the resilience in muscular stamina to withstand slight injuries.  And legless role climbs and, consistent handstand push ups (to the [new] standard), handstand walks, better cycling in Thrusters and more strength in positions for my overhead squat.

What is your pie-in-the-sky health/fitness/skill goal? Also known as a BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal)

Hm...Training for Competition again? 

Have you ever been injured? How did you move past them?

In January 18, I sprained some ligaments in my ankle. During the initial x-ray, j learned that I had a broken bone in my ankle for close to 20 years (because of a former running accident).  To get past it and still train and compete in the Open, I have followed the protocols developed by Dr. Jon Ide-Don at SFCF and other rehab movements developed by MVMT_LAB in Vancouver, Canada. I was referred to both by Coach, Shannon, and as a result I have adopted a more lengthy warm up and mobilization protocol. Also, Coach Josh adds in various movement drills from different sources including Kate Galliett, John Wellbourn’s Power Athlete and Louie Simmons’ Westside Barbell methods.

Bite Sized CrossFit Concepts - Virtuosity

In one of the oldest CrossFit Journal articles, Coach Greg Glassman defines virtuosity as “performing the common uncommonly well.” 

In CrossFit, and most often in life, people get bored with "simple" pretty quickly.  We as humans are after the complex.  Complex movements, complex theories... complexity is advancement.  But slowing down a moment to appreciate the simple will add richness to your CrossFit experience (not to mention your life).

Have you ever really sat back and watched an elite CrossFitter move?  Watching top athletes do pushups or air squats can be a thing of beauty.  Think I'm full of it?  Watch these athletes do more complex movements like thrusters at amazing speeds (*ahem Colleen*) and you will see unmatched efficiency, position, coordination and grace.   What are you seeing?  The athlete's virtuosity with the air squat and press.

 Because this has to happen......

Because this has to happen......

 ..... before this can...

..... before this can...

If it's the fundamental movements that we are focusing on, why doesn't every athlete have this in the bag?  "Virtuosity is elusive, supremely elusive. [...] There is a compelling tendency among novices developing any skill or art to quickly move past the fundamentals and on to more elaborate, more sophisticated movements, skills, or techniques." (Read Glassman's article)  After all, you're squat is good enough, and your mobility is sufficient right?  Who really needs perfection?  All I want is more weight!

... Get the picture?

So while there are so many movements in CrossFit, make sure you are taking time and focusing on the simple ones.  It is up to you as an athlete to chase perfection and virtuosity.  If you don't hold yourself to a higher standard, you're results will be what lose out. Yes, there is always something else you can do to get better, but before you move on to the fancy... how about that air squat?

Body Spec - June 26th

New Body Spec Date

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Body Spec will be here on Tuesday, June 26th! Book your spot here to get your body fat scan.  These scans are comprehensive and individualized snapshots of your body that give you the information you need to:

  • Pinpoint the exact impact of a new training or diet plan
  • Track progress over time, down to exact muscle and fat changes in different areas of the body
  • Optimize your training to suit your body’s specific needs
  • Compare your bone density to others like you
  • Identify long-term health risks

Free First Friday classes tomorrow!

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Are you curious about CrossFit? Have your friends, family, and co-workers been observing the first rule of CrossFit (Always talk about CrossFit)? Wondering what this crazy thing is all about?

United Barbell - CrossFit SOMA has been serving SF since 2010. We are committed to inclusive, positive coaching for humans of every athletic level from novice to competitor.

On the first Friday of each month, we program a beginner-friendly workout so that anyone can come and try it out for FREE!

UB athletes - feel free to bring in your pals to any class. Just make sure they sign the waiver!

On Fridays we have classes at 6:30am, 7:30am, 12pm, 5pm, and 6pm. Come on by!

 

Olivia Graff

Olivia's athletic origins lie in gymnastics and circus arts. After finding CrossFit in 2007, she became obsessed, and three years later left her IT career and opened United Barbell. Olivia is particularly passionate about helping people new to fitness to find joy in their growing athletic abilities. Since the birth of her daughter, Isis, in 2013, Olivia can add helping little ones find their athletic path to her list of passions.

Meet the staff: Jackie!

Jackie is our admin assistant, affectionately known as "Alive Siri," came to us from the Creamery next door, where she knew everyone's name, coffee order, and unfailingly had a smile on her face. When she applied at UB we hired her instantly. She was not a CrossFitter before joining our team but now is a regular Noon class athlete. She completed her first Murph on Memorial Day, and her comment was "it wasn't as bad as Fran!" We love you Jackie!!!

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What is your work out program?

I follow the training they do here at UB.

Do you play sports?

Not as much as I'd like.

Do you eat a particular diet or follow a specific diet philosophy?

I usually peek at what the coaches eat and then copy them, meat, veggies, rice, and I have recently added protein powder to my diet.

How often do you train?

I work out 3-4 times a week.

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How often in training do you hit a new PR or acquire a new skill?

Mostly every time because there is many moves I have not done.

What do you find contributes to your fitness the most?

The support I get here at UB. The coaches are always encouraging me to work out, and if I ever feel like can't do something, they always scale the work out for me and cheer me on.

  If you could share just one piece of knowledge to someone just starting out in their fitness journey what would it be?     It's not as scary as it looks :) Showing up and listening to the coaches helps out so much.

If you could share just one piece of knowledge to someone just starting out in their fitness journey what would it be?

It's not as scary as it looks :) Showing up and listening to the coaches helps out so much.

 

How long have you been exercising for?

Consistently since December.

What is your next strength /fitness/skill goal to be achieved?

I would like to get a pull up and a push up, and get double unders too. 

What is your pie-in-the-sky health/ fitness/skill goal? Also known as a BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal)

Compete in a competition one day!!!!

Have you ever been injured? How did you move past it?

When I was in High School I fractured my foot, I also get plantar fasciitis in both of my feet. I usually take Ibuprofen and ice my foot and that helps the pain. 

 

Olivia Graff

Olivia's athletic origins lie in gymnastics and circus arts. After finding CrossFit in 2007, she became obsessed, and three years later left her IT career and opened United Barbell. Olivia is particularly passionate about helping people new to fitness to find joy in their growing athletic abilities. Since the birth of her daughter, Isis, in 2013, Olivia can add helping little ones find their athletic path to her list of passions.

Meet Your Coach: Sam

He's a busy bee but can be found coaching our evening SWOD class, or working out with the intensity of a meteor hitting the earth - that's right, he works out hard enough to wipe out dinosaurs. Meet Sam!


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How long have you been exercising? 

I've been doing CrossFit for almost eight years - I started in the garage of my apartment building in college, and then moved to a gym. Before that I didn't work out much. I played sports growing up but wasn't very good, and stopped during high school and college. 

What is your work out program?

I work with a Coach from OPEX - Mike Lee. He programs for me, and I follow it almost perfectly. Everyone once in a while I hope in and do a workout with my friends - gotta keep it fun

Do you play sports?

I play golf, and am always down to jump into a pickup football game! 

Do you eat a particular diet or follow a specific diet philosophy?

I avoid dairy, and try to avoid gluten. I keep my carbs relatively low as well.  

How often do you train?

I have five full trainings sessions a week, one recovery day, and one rest day. 

How often in training do you hit a new PR or acquire a new skill?

Rarely! When I first started CrossFit I PR'd all the time, but now they're few and far between. Adding 5-10 LBS to a lift is a huge accomplishment these days! I find that I spend more time working on refining my skills and increasing efficiency. 

What do you find contributes to your fitness the most?

Sleep! Seriously, increasing my sleep and sleep hygiene has  been a game changer for me! It makes a huge impact on my training and my overall quality of life. 

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If you could share just one piece of knowledge to someone just starting out in their fitness journey what would it be?

"Be entirely present in the gym when you're there - work smart, work hard, and ask questions. It'll pay off! "

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What is your next strength /fitness/skill goal to be achieved?

I'm currently rehabbing a knee injury, so I'd like to be able to squat heavy comfortably!  

What is your pie-in-the-sky health/ fitness/skill goal? Also known as a BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal)

I'd like to go on a team to regionals.  

Have you ever been injured? How did you move past them?

I have! I tore my medial meniscus in my left knee in a few places in January of 2017. I had surgery last summer, and have taken a long time to carefully rehab it and resolve some movement faults that were leading to increased stress on my knee. 


Meet Your Coach: Geoff

For those of you who haven't met Geoff, he's the warm, welcoming face of our Tuesday morning Oly classes! We share him with San Francisco CrossFit where he interned under the great Diane Fu. Without further ado...


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How long have you been working out?

I first started training with weights back in junior high. I was lucky enough to go to a school that had an incredible PE program that involved weight training once per week, along with miles of running, track and field activities, and recreational sports. Training continued through high school, and then off and on through college. After having heart surgery in 2007, I went full-force back into training and haven't looked back. I discovered CrossFit in 2012, which quickly let me to powerlifting and Olympic-style weightlifting. 

What is your work out program?

Right now, I follow a 5-day Olympic-style weightlifting program with 1-2 days of CrossFit sprinkled in for conditioning.

Do you play sports?

I participate in one or two weightlifting competitions per year. I've also attended training camps in China with Coach Wu Chuaunfu in China over the past two years

Do you eat a particular diet or follow a specific diet philosophy?

I'm Level One certified in Precision Nutrition and currently working toward my Level Two. I remain diet agnostic and try to stay away from the magical thinking that plagues our industry. Ultimately, I stick to the 80/20 rule: 80% of your meals should be high quality, whole foods like meats, veggies, nuts, starches and fruits. The other 20% can be all of the pizza and donuts.

 "Fitness is an investment, not a purchase. You have to pay into it everyday with your actions and choices inside and outside of the gym. Those actions and choices will pay dividends in the long-run."

"Fitness is an investment, not a purchase. You have to pay into it everyday with your actions and choices inside and outside of the gym. Those actions and choices will pay dividends in the long-run."

How often do you train?

I train, on average, five days per week, depending on work and life stuff

How often in training do you hit a new PR or acquire a new skill?

New PRs are elusive these days, due to a hectic work and coaching schedule. However, I always have time to try to acquire a new skill.

What do you find contributes to your fitness the most?

Consistency. Consistency is the key to success in any endeavor, especially when life throws curve balls.

What is your next strength /fitness/skill goal to be achieved?

Becoming proficient at really basic gymnastics stuff like handstands, kipping movements, and general bodyweight movement.

What is your pie-in-the-sky health/ fitness/skill goal? Also known as a BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal)

It would be a tie between a 200kg snatch or a ring muscle-up.

Have you ever been injured? How did you move past it?

I've had the usual lower back or shoulder tweak that comes with pushing oneself in training. I've also been out of commission, due to open heart surgery. Dealing with injuries is always tough because they take us away from the activities we love to do. In my opinion, you have to accept that you're injured, come-up with a course of action with your doctors and coaches, and most importantly, keep going into the gym! If you aren't bed-ridden, due to a catastrophic injury, there's always something you can do in the gym. Plus, you get to be around your community, which is also integral to the healing process.