The Importance of Training with a Buffer

So we saw a couple of box-jump stacks this morning. It’s not the first time and I’m pretty confident it won’t be the last time but it got me thinking that I need to fast track a post that I’ve been thinking about writing for a while now .

Mountain biking @ Stromlo

Let’s just say you’re going for a ride up at Stromlo – You’ve made it to the top and now you’re bombing down “Skyline” (one of the flowiest sections up to the top of the mountain) On one of the corners you notice that you got a little loose. You might touch the breaks, back it off a little, pick a fresh line and open it up again – this would be considered riding “with a buffer” (eg. making a conscious decision to see the warning signs and make slight adjustments to avoid catastrophe) – you’ll still get to “flow” but the really good news is that you’ll live to ride another day – perhaps learning to push a little harder on your next trip down the mountain…

The best way to avoid a stack.... is to know your limits...

Other’s people ignore (or fail to see) the warning signs and just keep on charging, gaining more momentum, getting looser until things result in a full on, arse-over-tit, face plant off the edge of the track. This would be considered riding a buffer.  Sure you can do it – but it’s only a matter of time until you end up in hospital with a broken collar bone. It’s your call.

Bringing it back to the box

When you train you need to leave a little in the tank to avoid calamity. You need to be able to think while you’re getting a sweat on. You need to be able to stay in control of your body and the barbell, making slight adjustments to your movements, positions and rest periods. I’m all about intensity but not at the risk of your safety.

If you’re doing box jumps, you need to understand that you’re going to fatigue and you’re not going to be able to jump as high as when you first started. To avoid a stack you’re going to need to factor in longer rest periods between jumps or learn how to apply more force to each jump. You need to be able to make adjustments to your level of intensity on the fly. When I explained VOL training this morning I stated that there is a movement and that there is a movement/s – One of these movements was a focus (pull-ups) and the other was a filler (box jumps and double unders) -> I need you guys to treat them as such.

We should be learning more about ourselves and our capacity on a daily basis. In the great words of Kenny Rogers “You gotta know when to hold em…. and know when to fold em…” Sure he’s talking about playing poker but he’s also talking about (and I’m paraphrasing) “The best way to avoid a stack…. is to know your limits…” Train with a buffer – so you can come back and train again tomorrow…

Monday 8.9.14

A: Hang snatch + drop snatch (snatch balance) + OH squat

Compare to 4.8.14

B: Pull-up VOL training:

  • focus: strict pull-up/chin up – 1-5 reps evermin on the minute for 10 mins
  • filler: box jumps (10) / double unders (25)

Post loads and training notes to comments.

Coach B

Coach and Owner of Adapt CrossFit

  • Sharon Simonsen says:

    A. Stuck with 30kgs today to work on form
    B. 7 ring rows

  • Fee says:

    A: 30Kgs – worked a lot on ‘not folding’ very helpful tips Benny, so did not go higher on the weight. This weight felt really comfortable though.
    B: Unfortunately still cannot work on pull-ups, so did 1 strict HSPU (but with a 10Kg bumper and squishy mat) – great tips again Benny – thank you.

    • Elaine says:

      A: 30kgs, worked on technique with Coach B, same thing as Fee above.
      B: Worked on doing 2 strict pull-ups and managed to maintain. Was happy with form and aiming to build off this exercise.

  • Ray Simonsen says:

    A) Due to knee injury, I worked on Hang Power Snatches and trying to drop under the bar enough to catch it. worked up to 35kg.

    B) 4 Ring Rows – trying to work with good form and not kip them.
    I was one of the guilty on the box jumps. I was trying to rush the movement, instead of using poise.

  • Ivan L says:

    Does Kenny Rogers even lift?
    On another common Crossfit front, “checking your ego at the door”. It appears mine has been misplaced somewhere at home and doesn’t even make it to the box. I don’t think I’ll be needing it: in the last week, I’ve had one 18 yr old daughter do a 67kg snatch (>bodyweight, and >my 1RM) and my 15 year old son do a 102kg power clean (15kg >my 1RM). And even though my 16 year old daughter hasn’t been training much of late, Kenny very nearly pulled off a 55kg snatch this morning (also >bodyweight). She got the 50kg.

    So, to my meagre efforts:
    A. 60kg, but only just. Tried and failed 65kg three times then went back to do 3 goes at 50kg just to consolidate the move (and the flacid ego).
    B. Fared better here. 4 pullups, skin still on the shins. Wondering if I might just have made 5 pullups.

    • KJ says:

      Ah! That’s why Tahni was so keen to get 65 on the snatch complex tonight!
      Ivan…you are awesome. You and your wife provided the genetics for these children don’t forget!

  • Steve-o says:

    Huge congrats to Karl for his performance at the ADFA Throwdown on the weekend, taking out 1st overall and 1st for the Hero WOD (WOOD) for the day! A lot of spectators there commenting on “that beast that won the first event” – I know that guy!

    And thanks to Hobbo/Manda for saving my ass in the pool ;p

    A) Got 50kg ok, got the hang snatch at 55 then couldn’t stand the snatch balance up. Same issue of confidence with heavy weight overhead that I’m trying to work on.

    B) Maintained 3 Pull-Ups, stuck to 25 UB double-unders (except the 50 in the last round) and 10 box jumps, working on faster cycling at 20″.

  • A. 70kg
    B. 2,2,2 then the rest singles

  • Amanda C says:

    A. 25kg. Took 3 or 4 attempts at that weight to get the drop snatch happening. Glad to get there in the end.
    B. 3 ring rows.

  • A: 75kg, stoked with this. Hit the hang twice (failed the balance on the first set) so Im happy with the consistency at that 95%+ loading. Lots of PRs in the 10am today which was cool.
    B: Stuck with 3 PU and did rebound box jumps.

  • David N says:

    A: 52.5kg. Did this weight twice, on the first the lockout on the snatch wasn’t good and on the second the OHS squat was unstable. I’m counting them both but could be better.
    Last time I only completed 45kg successfully, attempted 50kg but failed on the drop snatch.

  • David N says:

    B: 2 pull ups

  • Marc D. says:

    Nice work Karl!

    A) Hit 60Kg, snatch wasn’t working for me today.
    B) Started with 4, went down to 3 in 2nd round to make sure my ego was at the door. and maintained unbroken. Finished with 12 in the last round, still had some in the tank.

  • john parr says:

    First one back in 3 weeks

    A: 65kg

    B: did 4 pullups. Slowed down towards the end, and I had to break them up, but I still maintained

  • Annie says:

    A. 40kg
    B.4 pull-ups

  • TarrynC says:

    A: got 45kg, and it felt comfortable, very happy with that! 1rm full snatch is only 47.5kg

    B: 3 pull ups in the first 7 rounds then down to 2. Red and yellow band.

  • Matt B says:

    Happy to have a good day in the gym after a sluggish weekend.

    A) got the complex at 70kg and only the hang snatch at 75kg.

    B) maintained 5 all the way through

  • Olivia says:

    A: I worked up to 47.5kg successfully. Went for 50kg and failed the first attempt from the hang cos I wimped out, second attempt I got under but my right knee tracked in and I couldn’t stabilise it. It’s the first time in a while that I’ve lifted close to my snatch 1RM.
    B: 3 strict pullups for all rounds

  • Craig W says:

    Trained with the big dogs Karl and Ben today. We all hit the complex at 90kg which was a Hang PR for me! We dropped 95kg but managed to all get under it – was just heavy!
    Pull Ups: Went next to Karl and Ewen and we hit a steady 5 each round
    Box jumps tried rebounds but they were a bit ugly!
    Great night in the box again

  • Karl Buchhorn says:

    Thanks dudes!!

    Good fun working with the snatch lords at the 5pm class & managed to hit 90kg, very excited about that.

    Worked off of 5 pull ups.

  • KJ says:

    A: got to 60kg. (On the third attempt) Thanks Tahni for the push.
    The overhead squat being the easiest part. Stoked to finally hit 60.
    B: stuck comfortably with 3 all the way through.
    First time trying rebound box jumps for some time! (Have pulled my calf muscle twice on these before). All good.
    C: Ewan and I finished off with ‘Annie’ next door. 6.34mins – 4 seconds off my goal! Stumbled 3 times in the first 10 seconds of DU. Next time!!!

  • eliza says:

    A — Felt good, light weight but had fun with it
    B — got some pullups with a red band, was working on 2 at a time, pretty happy to have a crack at these.
    had fun in the gym today, thanks, a positive session with coach Ben

  • Carrie says:

    A: 25kgs, up from 22kgs when we did this last month.
    B: Thought this would be a good chance to try and progress with the bands, so I worked with an orange band for the first time and just did one each set. Got the 10 out fairly comfortably.

  • Amelia says:

    a. 40kg up 2.5kg
    b.sets of 3

  • RACH says:

    A: 35kg – rocky to start with, felt stronger as progressed.
    B: between 2 1/2 & 3 strict PUs each Rd.

  • zacbax says:

    A. Didnt do this last time but safe to say iv improved hit 75kg which is a 4kg pr for me. Stoked to get it and even better to manage to finish the complex at that weight.

    B. Started with 5 after 4 rounds had to drop to sets of 4 and 3. Can do 4 across all sets consistently now but the 5 really blow me out.

  • Bec B says:

    A. 36kg, failed in the bottom of the snatch first time but held on the second attempt. Equal my current 1rm snatch and up 1kg from last time.
    B. 3 with orange band working on pronated grip as I find it harder. Didn’t do too much filler as my calves are pretty jacked from the weekend.

  • TessaW says:

    A: 45kg – knee a bit suspect
    B: 3-4 banded pullups

  • Gabriel says:

    A: 62.5kg on the third attempt, did 60 last time so happy with the improvement
    B: 3 pull-ups, went unbroken for all but last 2 rounds

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