The Goal

Fitness and Health

Fitness – To increase your work capacity across broad time and modal domains.

Health – To increase your fitness (increased work capacity across broad time and modal domains) throughout your life.

CrossFit advocates and develops a deliberately broad, general, and inclusive fitness program through a combination of gymnastics, weightlifting, and metabolic conditioning. CrossFit specializes in not specializing. Combat, survival, many sports, and life reward this kind of fitness and, on average, punish the specialist. As Robert Heinlein famously stated, “specialization is for insects.”

Fitness Standards

Constantly Varied, Functional Movements, Performed at High Intensity

Constantly Varied means you will never do the exact same thing, the only time you will repeat a workout is to measure improvement. Routine is the enemy. CrossFit constantly combines gymnastics, weight training, and endurance conditioning.

1. Always Changing

2. Always Learning

3. Broad, General, Inclusive

4. General Physical Preparedness

Functional Movements are universal motor recruitment patterns; they are performed in a wave of contraction from core to extremity; and they are compound movements—i.e., they are multi-joint.

1. Natural

2. Multi-joint

3. Safe

4. Essential

High Intensity is a measure of physics, not opinion. Intensity is measured by how fast you get real work done. The goal is to increase your capacity for work and to make you fit for everyday activities. Move large loads, long distances, quickly.

1. Intensity + Power = Results

2. Relative to Physical Limitations

3. Relative to Mental Limitations

4. Scaled per Individual

Metabolic Pathways

There are three metabolic pathways that provide the energy for all human action. These “metabolic engines” are known as the phosphagen pathway, the glycolytic pathway, and the oxidative pathway.

1. Phosphagen – Highest-powered activities. Those that last less than about ten seconds. 

2. Glycolytic – Moderate-powered activities. Those that last up to several minutes. 

3. Oxidative – Low-powered activities. Those that last in excess of several minutes.

Total fitness requires competency and training in each of these three metabolic pathways. Balancing the effects of these three pathways largely determines the how and why of the metabolic conditioning CrossFit favors. Favoring one or two to the exclusion of the others and not recognizing the impact of excessive training in the oxidative pathway are arguably the two most common faults in fitness training.

World Class Fitness in 100 Words

1. Eat meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch and no sugar. 

2. Keep intake to levels that will support exercise but not body fat. 

3. Practice and train major lifts: Deadlift, clean, squat, presses, clean and jerks, and snatch. 

4. Similarly, master the basics of gymnastics: pull-ups, dips, rope climb, push-ups, sit-ups, presses to handstand, pirouettes, flips, splits, and holds. 

5. Bike, run, swim, row, etc – hard and fast. 

6. Five or six days per week, mix these elements in as many combinations and patterns as creativity will allow. Routine is the enemy. 

7. Keep workouts short and intense. 

8. Regularly learn and play new sports.