With a bit of an influx of new members I thought it timely to write a piece on how to follow the Program, your options and how to decide that is best for you!
This article will cover:
- The Program
- Making the Program(s) work for you
The program is made up of three unique elements – The Athlete Program, The Specialty Programs and The Coach Layer
The Athlete Program – This is pure CrossFit – varied, fun, challenging! This is a great place to start if you want to improve your overall CrossFit ability or want a step up from your own gyms general programming. The Athlete Program is built for ALL ATHLETES. This means that regardless of your current fitness or skill level and your overall goals, you can follow the Athlete program in some capacity.
The Specialty Programs are designed to get you better at the specifics – the things you feel you’re lacking or lagging behind in either during competitions or during training.
The Weightlifting – Improving your Olympic Weightlifting technique and efficiency, while increasing your overall strength. Relatively structured and periodised but ultimately it is additional strength work to supplement the Athlete Program. If you want to get stronger and better at open chain movements (moving weight) this is the spot for you. You’ll see components of Strongman, Oly Lifting and Power Lifting.
Gymnastics – Improving your Gymnastics capacity/endurance and skills. Based around skill development and muscle endurance with closed chain movements (your body is the weight). It is not periodised at all. Additional work to supplement the Athlete Program.
Muscle Endurance – Improving Strength Endurance. This is the program we recommend the most, and have had the most positive feedback about – it is built with a bodybuilding/hypertrophy base to improve the time you can hang onto a bar, build some extra muscle mass or increase your overall strength endurance for workouts – it is generally not periodised and we recommend working close to failure for each component of this Program.
Capacity – A CrossFit style cardio program including metcons and monostructural movements, aerobic and anaerobic components to get you working faster, for longer. Straight cardio. Heart, lungs and oxygen transportation. It is not periodised, it differs in volume and intensity on a daily basis however is still a balance of intervals and long slow efforts so that we are working the heart volume and heart muscle power (and hypertrophy).
MAKING THE PROGRAM(S) WORK FOR YOU
The Athlete Program
The Athlete Program is where you will improve in all areas.
The Athlete Program is structured and periodised into 4 – 6 week Cycles, each with a different focus. With the change in the CrossFit season we have changed the way our Cycles are built to provide year round variation and options/suggestions for Athletes competing at Sanctionals or local competitions. Each cycle has a deload week built in to give the body a chance to recover and perform at its peak.
Generally there are 3 or 4 components on each training day with coach tips on the intent of it and how to tackle it. Time taken to complete the program varies between 45 – 90 minutes (depending on how efficient you are with your time in the gym).
Thursday’s are our active recovery days – alternating between Swim workouts and Gym Active Recovery
Sunday’s are our full rest days – the value of a full rest day cannot be understated, this is where you give your body the opportunity to recover and rebuilt for the training week ahead.
It is 100% OK to drop one part if the volume or intensity is too high or it takes to long for you. I will say though – choose the components that intimidate you the most, gets you out of your comfort zone so you will build the parts of your game that will improve you most as an athlete.
For example – If there is a weightlifting piece, metcon piece and a gymnastics skill piece choose the one you need to work on the most, not necessarily the one you will enjoy the most – this is how you build a balanced athlete.
These are a great addition to the Athlete Program to fill the gaps you have as an athlete or an addition to your gyms programming. You have the option to complete as many of the Specialty Programs as you choose depending on the time and capacity you have available.
Which Speciality Program is for me?
This is where you need to use your intuition. The Specialty Programs are not necessarily structured or periodised. On any given day you can mix and match pieces from different programs. This is where you begin molding yourself into a balanced athlete. The Athlete Program is balanced. If YOU are not balanced then Specialty Programming is where you start to work on your weakest part/s. Don’t be scared to mix and match it.
We have coaches available to help you decide which program would be the best for you however you know yourself as an athlete better than anyone – you should have an idea of where your strengths and weaknesses lie.
With the Specialty Programming you are encouraged to slot it into the normal training where it would best fit. Potentially strength and skill components early on in the day, with Muscle Endurance towards the end. You choose what works best for you. There is no specific order – a general rule is the components you need to work on the most should be prioritized and completed first as you will be fresh for this. Put the day together in a way that best fits you. If you have any doubt on what you should be doing then ask in the URX Club!
Each Part of the program usually has ideas for variations for more complex movements but if you’re not sure – use the coaches and other athletes in the URX Only FB Club group!
The Coach Layer
If you want more personalised guidance on how to structure your program you can get your very own coach, who can guide you on what to choose and structure this reach your goals, you’ll have access to your very own URX Coach who will provide you with video analysis for technical advice, warm up and accessory suggestions and personalised tapering for competitions. For even more personalisation we offer tailored 1 on 1 coaching which means 100% of the programming you will be given is designed specifically for YOU.
Regardless of the program you choose you will have the support and guidance of the URX Coaches and other Athletes. If you ever have questions you can flick and email through to firstname.lastname@example.org or send us a DM on Instagram (underground_rx). You’re part of the URX family when you sign up!