It is the end of your training week. You’re feeling tired and beat up from some tough training sessions, you’re behind on calories, and you need sleep. Lucky for you, we are giving you a chance to get ahead this weekend, before you attempt the latest Crossfit Games-Open workout on Monday, 3/10.
First step should be getting some rest. Sleep is probably the most underrated asset for an athlete, especially if you want to be fresh for the workout. Obviously we’ve heard the advice to get 8-10 hours of sleep a night; even though we may not be able to get that everyday you should be shooting for 1 day this weekend where you achieve that goal. My suggestion…Sunday night. You may find it beneficial to take a small dose of Melatonin, on the night before your workout, to help reset your internal clock and to help get a deeper sleep. Experiment with your dose first, especially if you work out early in the morning; sometimes you can wind up with a “Melatonin Hangover” if you take too large of a dose. Most supplements contain 1-5 mg pills. Start on the lower end to see how you respond. The larger the dose, the more risk for the “Hangover” response. L-Tryptophan and 5-HTP, also help with mood and sleep; but i would consult a physician before taking these supplements especially if you are on any SSRI medication, or have a history of depression.
Second step would be making sure that your sliding surfaces, and joints, are nice and mobile for the ensuing destruction. There are several sites offering advice on different mobility/stretching exercises to get you better prepared. MobilityWOD.com is a great one, especially for Crossfitter’s, because the creator is a Physical Therapist(read doctor) turned CF’er. Here are a few areas of emphasis as you triage yourself this weekend…
-Ankle and Calfs
( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uNzlUHwqPpo )
If you search YouTube, type in any of the above words followed by KSTARR, and you should see a plethora of videos addressing these areas. Spend about 3-5 minutes working on each area; choose one exercise per body part. If its your muscles that are tight, work on rolling/smashing with a Baseball, LaCrosse Ball, or Foam Roller. If your joints are snug, get involved in some banded stretches as well.
Good news everyone, feel free to eat carbs! That’s right…I said it, what?!? Just remember you need some Fat and Protein with your meals as well. If you’re ok with a little Rice, or Sweet Potatoes, now is the time to put them in. Don’t go crazy and use this as an excuse to binge on too much food, we still want you light enough to help with those Chest to Bar pullups, but we’re gonna want those muscles full of glycogen for this one. Stick to high quality protein sources; lean meats, fish, and Poultry to help aid in muscle repair. Don’t forget to put down lots of healthy fats this weekend as well; Avocados are like rocket fuel for crossfitters and they have a high amino acid profile as well. Did someone say SuperFood? Walnuts, Macadamia Nuts, Almond Butter, Olive Oil and Fish Oil, are just a few examples of healthy fat sources to help restore your CNS and help reduce inflammation.
Preworkout Meal 1(about 3 hours before workout): can be a decent sized meal with your starchy carb included. I would avoid high acid containing foods, things with lots of tomatoes or pasta sauce, as they can really upset your stomach during a workout. Make this meal nice and hearty; have a large portion of Protein(4-6 oz), and about 10-18 grams of Fat(maybe more if you “ZONE”) from healthy sources.
Preworkout Meal 2(about 60-90 minutes before workout): Keep this meal smaller and lower on the glycemic index. Look for about 2-4 oz of Protein, or a protein shake with about 20 grams in it; keep your carbohydrates low in starch at this time frame. Too much starchy food in the stomach before a workout can suck water into the gut, mainly to help digestion. Try eating lower glycemic fruit, like apples or berries(blueberries, blackberries, strawberries). These are also high in Vitamin C, which is a great antioxidant to help with free radical damage during the workout. Some even like to supplement with about 500mg of Vitamin C pre workout. Don’t forget the healthy fat! A Tablespoon of Almond Butter, or a Tablespoon of Olive Oil, straight to the face should work well to keep you full and give you the calories needed to help you feel full
Pre and Intra workout(About 10-30 minutes before the workout): You can implement your normal supplement routine. I would recommend having a Shaker with some BCAA’s(10-15 grams) and water, or an electrolyte containing beverage, such as gatorade, to sip on before the workout and during any rest periods in the workout. If you take a supplement with stimulants like caffeine, 1-3 Dimethyl…, Guarana, etc.; you should be wary of your timing with these supps as they can put your heart rate in to overdrive and you may never recover during the workout. If you notice your pre-workout supplement sends your heart rate through the roof during workouts, when taken 30 minutes prior, you may help reduce that effect by taking it farther in advance of the workout. Maybe even 1 or 2 hours before. This could make it easier to control your heart rate for the workout.
3) Practice Movements
Before Monday, you should be finding some time to work on your Overhead Squat positioning and your Chest To Bar Pullups. Figure out if you have the capability of going 10 OHS, or 10 C2B, unbroken. Check your ego at the door. I’ve seen many higher level athletes breaking the pullups into smaller segments, to keep the shoulders from fatiguing too soon. Round 1: 10 OHS(unbroken), then 5 pullups, with a quick 5 second break, before finishing the next 5. It seems a bit unorthodox for some, but if you are not very confident in your Pullups, figure out a pattern that keeps you from missing any reps during the C2B. Your overhead squat should be slow and steady to the bottom, smooth and fast on the way up. Reduce the urge to drop in and out of the squat quickly, this will tax the stabilizers in the shoulder if they have to adjust quickly in any part of the squat. Set a goal for your timing during the Rounds as well. You have 3 minutes per round. Unless you’re a skilled athlete with lots of training experience it doesn’t make any sense to try and go unbroken during any of the Rounds, especially if you are missing reps. Remember guys…breath control is the name of the game. You should be able to breath during the Squats, and the Pull Ups.
I hope some of this will help you this weekend. If you have any other questions, feel free to contact any of the coaches here at CF Country for any other tips or tricks that might help you power through your workouts. Have fun this weekend, but get some sleep..PLEASE!!! See you all on Monday