Supplements are just that; they help your body system to get those nutrients it either in low quantities or doesn’t produce at all. In CrossFit training, your body goes through rigorous movements, and this places huge demands on your nutritional stores. If these demands are not met, chances are your workout will be counterproductive. There are lots of supplements out on the market, and at times it can be confusing on which to pick and which to leave on the shelf. If you have been in that awkward situation where you are torn between two supplements not knowing which to side with, the brief on the supplements below will help you clear up your mind and know what you should get. Creatine This is one of the most effective performance supplements and also the safest. Numerous studies have been done most of which reveal that creatine monohydrate has a super ability to increase your strength levels and muscle mass. Also, it improves your body composition and boosts high-intensity work capacity. At the beginning of your CrossFit exercise, your body will depend majorly on phosphocreatine to produce energy. When you supplement with creatine monohydrate, you are in short increasing the levels of phosphocreatine in your muscles store. This is crucial for any CrossFit workout that requires the rapid energy source. Beta Alanine Due to the high intensity and variation of CrossFit movements, your body creates loads of metabolites which are mainly hydrogen ions and lactates. Many people believe that lactic acid is what is responsible for the burning sensation in your muscle. On the contrary, it is the accumulation of hydrogen ions that is behind all this. As the hydrogen ions accumulate, they interrupt the muscle contraction process leading to fatigue. Because of this, you need beta alanine which simply increases the quantity of carnosine in the body. Carnosine is a dipeptide which buffers excess hydrogen ions. This means supplementing with beta alanine enhances your performance and training volume. Branched Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs) You don’t have to be an athlete to include this in your supplement stack. For one, BCAAs taste good and secondly, they help you stay hydrated the day over. When you sip this magical supplement before or even during your CrossFit workout, you will experience speedy recoveries and the repair process will be quite fast even after a tough workout. Fish Oil For you to build strength, muscle mass, and enhance your performance, you need ample recovery. Fish oils are famous for their Omega 3 fatty acid content which is a key player in the recovery process. The essential fatty acids which include EPA and DHA help in reducing post-exercise muscle soreness and speed up your recovery process. Omega 3s also play a crucial role in maintaining a healthy heart as well as improving your cognitive performance. To add to the above, your CrossFit workout of the day is never complete without a protein powder supplement. While it is possible to meet your protein needs through whole foods, athletes with multiple workouts in a day require additional ready to drink proteins to jumpstart their protein synthesis and help with the muscle repair.  
If you keep on wondering why your back is smoked every time following glute ham developer (GHD) sit-ups, the answer could be in the way you do the workout. GHD refers to a piece of equipment which was made to help strengthen the glutes and the hams. Normally, this CrossFit workout movement is done while lying on your stomach, squeezing your butt, and keeping a fairly stable midline. It helps athletes move their hips while simultaneously maintaining a solid spine to protect the body during the movements. Many of the back problems that arise in GHD sit-ups are caused by the inability of the athletes to dissociate the hips from the spine. As a result, they move the two of them all at once which creates shear forces on the spine. Since we incorporate GHD in sit-ups, the truth is it wasn’t created to work the hip flexors and abdominals in a dynamic extension movement. GHD sit-ups is an extremely high-level exercise which requires baseline strength and body awareness as you fling the spine through ranges of flexion and extension. Deciding on the Readiness of Your Body for GHD Sit-Ups There are various steps mentioned by CrossFit workout that you need to go through to access whether indeed your spine can accommodate GHD sit-ups. The following are the steps: Flexibility to Sit Upright You need to access whether you are flexible enough to sit upright with your legs straightened right in front of you. Note that in this position, your lumbar spine must be straight and not round. If you pass this readiness test, then you can move to the next step. If you have problems, then you need to start working on mobility in your daily CrossFit workouts. Failing the flexibility test may point to a combination of spine stiffness as well as a problem with the entire posterior chain which includes calves, glutes, hamstrings, and the bottom of the feet. Holding Your Body in a Parallel Position The next assessment according to CrossFit workout is to check whether you can hold your body in a parallel position on the glute-ham developer equipment while keeping a good spine position and breathing. If you have a problem here, you need to practice especially on perfecting your mechanics. Transitioning from the Parallel Position If you have passed the above step, you now need to test how smoothly you can transition starting from the parallel position, then gradually up to the top and thereafter back to parallel position while maintaining a good spine position. This transition movement is similar to doing a hip hinge exercise such as hip extension and deadlift. The only difference with the GHD is the positioning. If you are able to transition, then you can do the GHD sit-ups very well. It is therefore important not to assume that you are prepared for GHD sit-ups and therefore you can include them in your CrossFit workout of the day. You need to take yourself first through these steps, and then if you are ready, you can move on comfortably.
It doesn’t matter whether you are a CrossFitter who is experienced or you are simply a beginner looking to curve your way out, the first few weeks of your exercises can be hurting. You need time to adapt so that your body can be in sync with the frequency and magnitude of your workouts. The pertinent question many people ask is how they should know they have optimized their recovery in between CrossFit workout of the day. Unfortunately, the answer is, there isn’t a way to tell. There are no markers or signs to show that you have fully recovered not even the delayed onset of muscle soreness. This is why you can always enhance your recovery efforts even if you feel you are getting better at handling WODs. For every athlete, optimal recovery is a dynamic and systematic physiological process which changes as the athletes change. The following tips will help you in optimizing your next WOD. Clean Up Your Diet What you eat and how you eat it on a day-to-day basis is one of the major factors that will impact on your recovery. The WOD is simply a stimulus for growth. However, the body won’t grow during the workout because real growth happens in the repair and recovery process. A clean CrossFit diet should include lean protein to support muscle growth as well as lots of fruits and veggies for the vitamins. Veggies and fruits contain antioxidants which are crucial in protecting your body against muscle cell damage. Similarly, the phytochemicals in the dark leafy greens can help in repairing connective tissue and reduce inflammation. Pre-WOD Nutrition An excellent way to optimize your recovery is to lower as much as possible the amount of stress your body encounters when working out at CrossFit gym. To do this, you have to eat as much energy packed nutrients as you can before the start of your session. Even though every person handles pre-WOD snack differently, try and consume a small meal or snack an hour or two before the training. Aim at getting 250 to 350 calories particularly coming from non-sucrose carbohydrate sources. Post-WOD Activities When you finish your WOD at CrossFit gym, you can engage in some light activities so as to cool down. Go for biking, jogging, or rowing, or even some light gymnastics. This will continuously push blood through your vessels thus helping in circulating out any waste products from muscle contraction. After Workout Massage To reduce swelling for the affected tissues, go for physical manipulation of the muscle tissue using lacrosse ball, roller, or even better, partner massage. This breaks up the tightness of the muscles. Sleep Inadequate sleep can sacrifice your growth and progress in the CrossFit gym. Research shows that much of the anabolic process takes place during sleep. Also, the regulation of growth hormones, cortisol, melatonin, and others which affect the adaptation of your muscles to training, takes place at night. Try about 8 hours a night of sleep and avoid intake of foods and drinks such as alcohol, sugar, caffeine, and water a few hours before your workout. Remember to stay hydrated, supplement adequately, and ensure that you follow your post-WOD nutrition carefully.
Apart from helping you to develop explosive strength, power clean has lots of other benefits in store for you. First things first, power cleans are not your ordinary CrossFit workout; it can get a little tricky in doing it right. It is therefore recommended that you learn how to do it properly so that the below benefits can be yours for keeps. Muscle Development Technically, power cleans are categorized as a shoulder exercise in the Crossfit workout, but they can go a long way in building up your deltoids. Because they hit your posterior chain hard, they develop your leg muscles including glutes, hamstrings, and calves. Also, the power clean technique targets the lower and upper back muscles as well as the traps. Explosive Power Power clean is a lifting exercise that can significantly improve your explosiveness quite fast. With the first pull portion during CrossFit workout, you can rapidly build explosiveness. The rest of the power clean motion aids in building speed and strength which gives you additional power and explosive potential. Burning Body Fat If you are looking ways to burn calories and body fat, power cleans can be tremendous in helping you achieve this. You will gradually develop a lean physique which includes impressive muscle size and definition. One of the things you must bear in mind though is that power cleans are best undertaken in low reps. When you insist on high reps, you will deteriorate your form. A Full Body Workout Power clean is an Olympic-style CrossFit exercise routine which demands coordination from every single muscle group in the body. As you continue exercising, your muscle density and functional strength will improve especially on the shoulders and posterior chain including the glutes, back, hams, calves, and traps. Many pieces of training and athletes have found this exercise attractive due to the advantage it gives them over the rest. The first half of power clean is similar to that of a deadlift and needs intense muscle contractions. The advantage of this is that it trains your explosiveness right from the ground which is helpful for any fast-paced sport such as football, basketball, or running. The second part of the power clean movement is useful for athletes who require quick fit movement. When executing this workout, you will be required to hold on to some heavyweights at extremely high velocities, and this will undoubtedly enhance your grip strength. Therefore, whether you are looking for a great exercise to add to your CrossFit workout of the day or a highly effective sport-specific exercise, power cleans can’t lead you the wrong way!
It’s true that wall balls hurt because they are one of the CrossFit exercises that test you deep down, making your arms and legs scream for you to stop. That notwithstanding, you can excel in this workout and become better with time. The following are some of the tips that will assist you in getting this done. Catching and Positioning the Ball During the entire movement, the secret is to keep the ball as close as possible to your body. This is because of the further away it is from your body, like any weight, the heavier it will seem. This is primarily due to your resistance arm becoming longer. While attending CrossFit Exercises do make sure that when you are keeping the ball clos, take care that it doesn’t smash into your face when executing your WOD. This mostly happens because of fatigue and tired arms. Try as much as possible in order to resist the temptation to keep the ball far away by positioning your hands to the sides and a little towards the bottom of the ball when executing the catch. The Depth of Your Squat When doing wall balls, it is required that your hip crease break the plane of your knee joint during the squat. Some athletes get frustrated when other members of the gym cheat their way through their series of wall balls and then gloat and celebrate it. Just like with any other CrossFit workout of the day, aim to do it properly. If you want to do this well and train your body thoroughly so that you can find the exact position of the squat, practice with another ball which you place behind you and you sit on each rep. Don’t allow the ball to take your weight, but simply make use of it as a physical trigger to train your body on how far the depth of your squat should be. The moment you touch the ball, launch straight back upwards. Rest Your Arms When doing wall balls in CrossFit Exercises, the muscles surrounding your shoulder joint will become fatigued. Your goal should be to reduce this fatigue so that you can last longer in the exercise. The best way to do this is to allow your arms to drop down after propelling the ball upwards. This will give you the much-needed moment of rest however minuscule it is.  Take on the Weight of the Ball There should be a good rhythmic flow between the movement and mechanics of wall ball. This means disregarding your legs though they may be on fire, and try to maintain aggressive movement throughout. Whenever you get hold of the ball on its descent, allow its weight to be absorbed into your squat. This momentum will drive you smoothly downwards giving you an opportunity to turn this ballistic movement into a powerful bounce at the bottom which will power the ball up again. Your Distance from the Wall Regardless of how you manage to rest your arms during each movement, standing too far from the wall will give you a huge amount of work. Throwing the ball too far forward will disorient your upward momentum because your body will be forced to tilt forward to correct your movement. The energy wasted here is unnecessary, and you will get tired much faster in the CrossFit gym. To add to the above, think about your biometrics to get the perfect position for you. The ball should also be a comprise between a bouncy one and a heavier one. Use your personal judgment.
Exercises can be divided mainly into two categories: compound and isolation. While isolation CrossFit exercises involve the movement around a single joint, compound exercises involve movement around more joints than just one. Also, isolation exercises regarding target aim at a small number of muscles while compound exercises target at a large number of muscles. The thruster is one of the most effective compound exercises which allow you to perform a high volume of workout within a short time. Compared to other movements, the thruster has the greatest carry over into physical and sports performance. What is a Thruster? In simplicity, a thruster refers to a combination of two compound weight training exercises: overhead press and the front squat. For this reason, the thruster can also be referred to as complexes. When performing the thruster, CrossFit athletes use kettlebells, dumbbells, medicine balls, barbells, and many more. Well, any heavy object can be used in this exercise. The performance methodology involves standing with your feet at a distance apart equivalent to shoulder width. Your chosen weight should be in front of your shoulder, and your elbows should be positioned below your hands. Then, lift your chest, push back your hips, and gradually bend your knees. After that, you have to slowly squat down until the thighs are parallel to the floor. Then, drive up explosively and maintain the momentum of the bar by extending your arms and pushing the weight overhead at arm's length. Lower the bar back to your shoulders as you bend your arms and then squat down before doing a repeat. The Anatomy of the Thruster Adding the thruster to your CrossFit workout of the day will benefit your major muscles including the glutes, hamstrings, and quadriceps.  The part of the thruster that works out your legs muscles is squatting. Your legs generate some force which is transmitted to your upper body through the lower back and abdominal muscles. The powerful push that drives the weight overhead originates from the triceps and upper back. The Benefits Thrusters are usually done using a variety of repetition and set schemes which target different elements of your fitness. High rep, light-weight sets dramatically elevate your heart rate and enhance your cardiovascular fitness because they are metabolically demanding. On the other hand, low-rep, heavyweight sets develop muscular power and strength. When you perform thrusters using an unstable object such as a sandbag or water-filled barrel, your core strength will be significantly improved. If you want to enhance your balance, try using dumbbells as your weights in the thruster. It is not advisable to include thrusters in a beginner CrossFit training programme. This is because of the high-risk nature of this exercise characterized by the heavyweight lifting and complex, coordinated movements. Argued in another way, thrusters place a potentially injurious and significant load on the lumbar spine which requires perfect technique else the lower back can become rounded.