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Half Ass Effort Yields Half Ass Results
You’ve heard the phrase that “half assed effort yields half assed results” and the saying couldn’t be more true in CrossFit; however, many athletes think this refers to total reps and intensity, and overlook the reference to form and range of motion.
Today’s WOD includes lots of push-ups, like a lot of push-ups. Push-ups are a perfect example of learning to balance form and range of motion with intensity.
Let’s start with a quick review of the push-up. A push-up begins with the body in a plank position with the elbows fully locked out. To perform the push-up, the athlete leans the chest forward while drawing the elbows backward and alongside the body until the chest and thighs touch the ground (not chest or thighs). The athlete then presses the body out of the push-up until the elbows return to their fully locked-out position.
Now that you have a picture of good push-up form in your head, let’s play out a scenario that could happen in the thick of a workout. The athlete needs to complete 25 push-ups. The first ten push-ups are money! TEN. The athlete goes for five more and, holding onto that solid technique, squeezes them out while moving just a little slower. FIFTEEN! Without resting, the athlete goes for another ten. In the last ten, the athlete doesn’t lower fully to the ground each time, their lockout at the top has become soft, and on the last rep the athlete gets to a very close but not full lockout and drops their knees to the ground, done. TWENTY FIVE! Close enough, right? Lot of intensity, right? No!
Remember that we want form and range of motion with intensity. Sometimes that means knowing when you need to break your set so you can pursue the next set with good form and range of motion and sometimes that means scaling the reps, or both. It takes an athlete who is honest about their training and their current ability level to work through good reps now to be able to excel long into the future. Ok, nagging coaches help in this area as well.
Listen to that little voice in your head that says, “I totally know this isn’t what I’m supposed to be doing” to maintain good form and range of motion now so you’re not frustrated by lack of progress in the future.
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