Archive for May, 2015

Water Intake, Salt Intake, and Junk Science

Uncategorized | Posted by Kayla Castro
May 29 2015

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With summer coming on, many of you are probably worried about taking in enough water throughout the day and especially at workouts. But you shouldn’t.

The idea that you need to be drinking the recommended “at least eight glasses of water per day” for health and performance results is a) based on junk science, and b) contrary to what we’ve seen succeed for our athletes. As Mark Sisson notes, “…there is no evidence that drinking eight or more glasses prevents constipation, kidney stones, bladder cancer, urinary tract infections or that it guarantees you’ll have clear skin and a toxic-free liver….On the other hand, there are some possible health consequences of overdoing this hydration thing. Chronic over-consumption of water can cause the relative concentration of important electrolytes in the blood to drop, a condition called hyponatremia, which in turn forces water out of the bloodstream and into cells, causing them to swell. Not a big deal for a muscle cell, but catastrophic when it’s a brain cell and there’s no extra space to expand into.”

This leads us to a topic that CrossFit has taken head on: sports drink companies marketing to athletes and the net results being common issues of cramping and in more serious cases Exercise Associated Hyponatremia (which can lead to what Sisson is describing above: swelling of the brain, and possibly death).

Further, many of you have been probably told by your doctor or seen information in the media warning you about excessive salt intake. The science behind the salt is dangerous for your health has been thoroughly debunked by Gary Taubes as far back as 1998. But health professionals and media continue to promote this concept.

The combination of lowering your salt intake and raising your water intake can combine to create a dangerous results. You should drink when you’re thirsty and eat Paleo. If you begin cramping in a workout, you should NOT drink water. As Arlington starts to heat up, you may want to increase your salt intake by simply adding salt to your meals. For some of our more active members, you may want to have some Endurolytes before an especially long workout as well.

[Originally posted Potomac CrossFit 150507]

Top 5 Reasons to Not Start CrossFit

Uncategorized | Posted by Kayla Castro
May 28 2015

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We don’t really “sell” our product in a traditional way. I teach most of the free classes and all we do is give the prospective clients a short period of instruction and assessment and then give them a short beginner CrossFit workout. If people want to come in and have some questions answered about CrossFit, I tell them “I hear it’s good” and then steer them to the free class.

Most folks that are interested in starting or maybe have just started have a few common reasons why CrossFit isn’t for them:

1) It’s too hard. It’s not “too hard”, but it is harder than what you’ve been doing. But we offer a training program. This isn’t a common globo-gym experience of “come in and fuck around” (or more accurately, pay them for a year of access to “come in and fuck around” time and don’t use it). It’s also not a common “fitness class” in that I don’t care if you “feel like you worked out”, I care about training you. A big portion of this will be integrating you into our effective training program and modifying it to fit your ability. This will still make it hard, but it’s also what makes it effective. If you want results, you have to work for it.

2) It’s too expensive. Our average per hour class price is $15. This is cheaper than most yoga, spin, barre, or whatever else you’re going to go to. It’s also much cheaper than a personal trainer. In addition, you get the group environment with a score which will push you much further than anything else: “Men will die for points.”

3) It’s too hard to make time for this. It’s 3-5 hours per week out of an available 168 per week. Even subtracting 10 hours per day for work and commute and 8 hours per day for sleep, you have 62 hours a week to work on your fitness and crush it at Ballroom.

4) It doesn’t compliment my current routine. This is because your current routine is probably stupid. If you are training for a marathon or doing back and bi’s/chest and tris, you’re not actually doing anything that will improve your fitness. So the best way to fit our program into your program is just do our program.

5) I’m afraid I might get injured. You probably will, but it will also probably not be because of CrossFit. Granted, we’ll push you, but we also have extremely experienced coaches that can work around pretty much anything. So as long as you can a) check your ego and not have to do what everybody else is doing and b) talk to and listen to your coaches when they give you guidance, you’ll be able to keep training and getting better.

[Originally posted Potomac CrossFit 150513]