Move & Challenge
Programming workouts is one of my favorite things. I recently took over programming responsibilities for our community. I have been programming for a couple of years. My athletes have ranged from beginners, to advanced as far as training age and work capacity. When I became the owner of our gym, I wasn’t sure that I wanted to take on the responsibility of programming immediately. With the circumstances of COVID-19 I initially took on the role temporarily, but it evolved to become a more permanent thing.
My goal for the long term is to have a team of coaches who program. There are many ways to program, but the most important thing to consider is what goal you are trying to achieve. Programming for a general population is no easy task. Well, let me rephrase that, it can be an easy task. Anyone can throw a bunch of workouts together without a lot of thought or effort. One of the programmers I look up to, Pat Sherwood of CrossFit Linchpin, now Linchpin Athletics once said that a good programmer has to think about 50 different things at once. That comment really resonated with me when I first heard it. Safety, intention, goals, recovery, novelty, are a few of the things to think about. What people want, as well as what is needed.
I learned a lot of how I program from Coach Gilly Boyd who programmed for us for the last few years. I also am influenced by my time working at CrossFit Marin The Cave which is a gymnastics gym as well, and Marin Heavy Athletics which is an Olympic Weightlifting Gym run by a former world record holder. I’ve had a couple of coaches, Brianna Lamb from Revival Strength in San Rafael and John Main who is a CF-L4 (the Highest CrossFit Certification you can earn) and a coach to a former games athlete. I say all that to say I am influenced by a lot of different styles of programming and training.
Ultimately I don’t think anyway of programming is wrong, so long as you program with care, consideration, and intention. I care about you. I consider the many different athletes we have in our community, from young to older to just beginning to advanced. I try to write every workout with a specific intention. This week we introduced two new tracks. I thought we would be back inside of the gym but for circumstances that our outside of our control, we remain with outdoor classes. I wanted to create tracks that were accessible to people and had specific intentions.
Move is the name of the first track. Move is intended to live up to its namesake. Move is for anyone that just wants to move on a given day. Some days we may not sleep the best because our babies are crying all night. Or maybe we feel kind of beat up from the week, Move is for you. Or maybe you are at the beginning of your journey. Just Move. Not everyday is the same. Somedays our only goal walking through those doors is to move and get sweaty. This workout is good for those days when you need to Move. Get it?
Challenge is the name of our second track and like its name, it will be a challenge for the days that you feel up to a challenge. It is for those of us that sleep well, eat well, and feel good when its time to workout. Maybe we’ve done this for awhile and we have a strong work capacity and like working advanced movements. We welcome the challenge and want to push ourselves.
In between Move and Challenge is any number of options. I am not a rigid programmer who expects you to do everything exactly how I write it all of the time. No that’s not what my time at CFN has taught me. It has taught me to do whatever it takes for you to leave feeling better than when you walked in. Intensity and Challenges should be earned. On the days that you may be experiencing high stress or maybe sleep isn’t the best but you still want to make it to the gym Move. When you are ready for a Challenge go for it. And feel free to mix and match. Alternate days, ask your coach for modifications to meet your specific needs and goals.
Also, give me feedback let me know your thoughts. I know change is hard for a lot of us. My overall goal for programming is to help you become the best version of yourself. That’s my purpose in life. I spend hours on this weekly, but to me its the greatest privilege. My family, Emily and her sister Amy and my Brother in Law Mike actually test out the workouts I program on week in advance. I really enjoy that because we have a wide range of strengths and weaknesses and are all at different stages in our journey. Programming is art to me. And believe one day, it will change again because I believe in continuous development. Thank you for taking the time to read this. I will close with, one of the things that brings me joy is watching our classes and seeing you guys get a good workout. That genuinely makes me happy. 🙂