so there are many people who question CrossFit and its meaning, purpose, safety, origin...yada yada yada...as seen in recent posts/forums (i.e. Mike Boyle and Gray Cook vs. CrossFit) and in the latest t-nation article question of strength October by Charles Poliquin....
those who know me and my background understand that a lot of Charles' concepts and training methodologies have helped me achieve a much braoder concept of performance...and the "little things" that go with that...i am forever grateful for his patience in allowing me to learn about his principles and training programs..
he recently had this to say about my sport;
Question to Charles: What do you think of that Crossfit stuff?
Answer: I have no clue what the hell that is. Is that one of those systems that's a mish-mash of everything?
Wait, I saw on article on that in Muscle & Fatness. Looked like a bunch of cachexic fitness-model wannabes searching for their souls in the weight room.
It reminds me of a Hungarian proverb: "If you only have one ass, you can't sit on two horses." If you try to do everything in your workout, you get nothing.
Another way to look at it is to think of Tim Ferris's example of wearing your underwear over your pants. It's different, and maybe even fun for some people, but it's not very effective.
No athlete has ever gotten good training like that.
funny for sure...Charles always had a way of invloving humour in place of knowledge...in this case, it hits home...
my stats pre CrossFit on Charles philosophies (i'll just use a few to give you an idea) - bwt avg - 180#, 5K Run - 21:25, DL - 451, Bench - 245, 1RM chin up - 80lbs attached, BF% - 8% average...that was working on an arms, legs, off, torso, off split as well as energy system training on odd pm's ( i ran a 11.58 100 m in this phase)...and if you think it was a mish mash, you're wrong - those who know me know i'm a soldier, when i'm on a program, i'm on a program, no miss wishy washy here...it was tight...for years (within this time i alternated b/t Staley, Westside, and Chek programs...as the saying goes, keep what works, throw away what does not, i obviously stuck with Chuck)
my stats with Crossfit as my template - bwt avg - 163#, 5K - 18:15, DL - 459, Bench - 246, 1RM chin up - 110 lbs attached, BF% - 6% avg...and as you know, i have been at that religiously for 4 years on a 3 on, 1 off schedule with constantly varied sessions...and as mentioned, keep what works, throw away what does not...
the intention of the post is not to critique Charles' comments but to give folks an idea that you CAN have fun, be a good athlete, and go AGAINST the comments of "if you try to do everything, you get nothing"....if i was in Charles' position and if the question was asked to me, my answer would have been "i'm not aware of it and what they do, so i cannot comment"...easy as that
but this just fuels the fire...as with time comes change...it will still take some time but we at OPT are making people more fit than ANY other exercise program can WITH CrossFit methodology...BUT, and here is the big BUT...my clients who are joes and janes are becoming more fit than my athletes...(and not just judging by Crossfit's definition of fitness, we're talking science - anaerobic threshold tests, lactate testing, urine/saliva testing...) and this is while on CrossFit, not another program style...so i can see why people hold on to previous beliefs about periodization and strength training and performance if that is all they knew....i have always been open minded and know what really works for most and what does not...and this skill of having CF as a tool combined with a science background and great coaching will be a lethal combination that all athletes as well as normal rec lifters will be climbing over each other to get at soon..its happening...but it takes time and patience, numbers....Greg has done this on .com for years, we're develping it as well at Crossfit Calgary and OPT...
soon we'l have athletes on the podium and in magazines and on the sides of buses wearing CrossFit gear...then they'll ask that question again in t-nation...and EVERYONE will know the answer....EVERYONE!