Archive for November, 2014

Training Through Injury

Uncategorized | Posted by Kayla Castro
Nov 18 2014

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I’ve trained a lot of folks that have been injured and admittedly it’s challenging for me as a coach, but much harder for the athlete. The thing that I think is most important in keeping folks training in general is seeing tangible progress and being a part of the group. Without this anyone would get discouraged.

Our training is geared for progress for the able bodied athlete. When you’re injured, that structure gets replaced by something that’s effective, but not in the same way for everyone. For instance, if you have an upper body injury that keeps you from pushing and pulling, your structure is going to be built on much more lower body training (I get it, these are keen insights…..).

I’ve created and executed a ton of training templates for folks with injuries and seen tons of progress in terms of both healing the affected body part(s) and in building strength/endurance in the healthy body parts. But folks don’t want that, myself included. We want to be doing the same thing as everyone else and doing it well, seeing improvement. It’s tough to come to the WOD classes and do something different.

So if you’re injured and getting discouraged you have two options:
1) Suck it up, #justshowup, and do what I tell you. You’ll get healthy and you’ll still see improvement, just not the same as everyone else.
2) Sign up for personal training. This way we can create an independent structure for you that will show you tangible progress in what you need specifically.
3) Take a break and see a professional. Our in house chiro, Dr. Jordan or massage therapist Dave Marsh are here to help!

[Originally posted Potomac CrossFit 141113]

Paleo Challenge Wrap Up

Uncategorized | Posted by Kayla Castro
Nov 06 2014

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As many of you know, our Fall Paleo Challenge just ended. Congrats to the Paleo Challenge Powe Couple/Winners: Garrett R. and Karen S. They both crushed it.

If you don’t know how we Run the Paleo Challenge, it’s mostly a performance based competition. We rank you on an initial three WODs, your improvement in three WODs, and your before and after photos. Whoever has the best rank combined on all three categories is the winner.

So you have to do well initially, improve, and show some increase in lean body mass (LBM). So as you can see above from Garrett’s photos, he saw a big difference in his LBM. What’s very interesting to me comparing scores within the Paleo Challenge (which you can see here) is that Garrett and Karen went about winning the Paleo Challenge differently. Garrett was first place overall in the initial WOD, and still managed 7th in improvement. So while he did really well initially, he still made a big improvement in four weeks.

Karen was 4th in the initial WODs, and 6th in her improvement. She crushed the photos though (which I’m still harassing her to let me share :)) and that put her over the top.

We tell our athletes in Class 1 of Foundations: “Focus on performance, and aesthetics will come”. We think the Paleo Challenge does a fairly good job of reinforcing this.

We only do these Paleo Challenges 2x/year. If you’re interested in getting started with Paleo sooner, you can check out our quick start guides here or email info@potomaccrossfit.com for info on our Nutritional Consultations.

[Originally posted Potomac CrossFit 141009]

Elite Alcohol Fueled Performance: Part II

Uncategorized | Posted by Kayla Castro
Nov 05 2014

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Last week we talked about the basics of why you shouldn’t drink and alluded to why you should via pop-science and 11th Century Persian poetry (PS. If you haven’t read Khayyam, you’re missing out!). This week I want to talk about how you should go about drinking:

1) Drink with people you like. We are, like ants, bees, wasps and wolves, a pack species.
2) Drink clear liquor, brown liquor and/or wine. Skip the beer, gluten is bad. Vodka fucks you up just as good.
3) Drink during the day. Eat a big meal after, then go to sleep!

Follow these simple rules of thumb and you can get all the benefits of drinking without as many negative effects. And as always, if you need more help, I’m available for personal training at either Potomac CrossFit or Clarendon Ballroom.

[Originally posted Potomac CrossFit 141002]

Elite Alcohol Fueled Performance: Part I

Uncategorized | Posted by Kayla Castro
Nov 04 2014

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There are a plenty of athletes in the gym that are very high performers, very strict Paleo eaters, and very admirable drunks. While I only meet two of those three criteria, I’ve still seen a lot of performance increases over my last eight years of CrossFit and living in Arlington, the day drinking capital of the world.

My advice to my nutritional consulting clients and my Paleo Challengers is simple and ripped off from Robb Wolf: “Drink as little as possible to maximize performance, and as much as necessary to maximize your sex life.”

“BUT HOW MUCH CAN I REALLY DRINK BRIAN?!?!?!?” is the question I often get. Well let’s look at why you should minimize first:

  • Alcohol blunts protein synthesis. Alcohol in your bloodstream will decrease the amount of amino acids your body can use to form complete proteins which grow and repair muscle tissue.
  • Alcohol decreases your energy levels by dehydrating you. Because alcohol is a diuretic, it will expel water from your body that’s necessary in the creating of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), a key chemical compound in Kreb’s/Citric Acid Cycle, which is how the body uses food for energy.

There are plenty of other reasons to skip or reduce alcohol consumption (and there’s a longer rundown from Bill Imbo here), but hopefully that’s scared you a little bit.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m with Malcolm Gladwell and Omar Khayyam on the wonderful relationship between man and booze, but we need to look at the why and how to make half way decent non-Fireball based decisions. Next week we’ll discuss the question of “how much” and “how to”. Until then either cloister thyself or enjoy drinking prior to eating the fruit of knowledge.

[Originally posted Potomac CrossFit 140925]