I have to admit, I just follow your blog and then do the workouts on my own, is this okay?
You could just follow our blog, but you would not get the quality of teaching from our certified trainers. Most people are not taught how to move correctly and don’t know how to teach themselves. You are automatically making yourself more susceptible to injury and leveling off in your gains by trying to do this on your own. It is also infinitely more fun when you are encouraged and held accountable by a group of your peers. Plus you won’t have someone cheering you on in your basement or local gym, like you have at Cascade CrossFit
Just what is a “core strength and conditioning” program?
CrossFit is a core strength and conditioning program in two distinct senses. First, we are a core strength and conditioning program in the sense that the fitness we develop is foundational to all other athletic needs. This is the same sense in which the university courses required of a particular major are called the “core curriculum”. This is the stuff that everyone needs. Second, we are a “core” strength and conditioning program in the literal sense meaning the center of something. Much of our work focuses on the major functional axis of the human body, the extension and flexion of the hips, and extension, flexion, and rotation of the torso or trunk. The primacy of core strength and conditioning in this sense is supported by the simple observation that powerful hip extension alone is necessary and nearly sufficient for elite athletic performance. That is, our experience has been that no one without the capacity for powerful hip extension enjoys great athletic prowess and nearly everyone we’ve met with that capacity was a great athlete. Running, jumping, punching and throwing all originate at the core. At Cascade we endeavor to develop our athletes from the inside out, from core to extremity, which is how good functional movements recruit muscle, from the core to the extremities.
What if I don't want to be an athlete; I just want to be healthy?
Awesome! We hear this often, but the truth is that fitness, wellness, and pathology (sickness) are measures of the same entity, your health. There are a multitude of measurable parameters that can be ordered from sick (pathological) to well (normal) to fit (better than normal). These include but are not limited to blood pressure, cholesterol, heart rate, body fat, muscle mass, flexibility, and strength. It seems as though all of the body functions that can go awry have states that are pathological, normal, and exceptional and that elite athletes typically show these parameters in the exceptional range. The CrossFit view is that fitness and health are the same thing. It is also interesting to notice that the health professional maintains your health with drugs and surgery each with potentially undesirable side effect whereas the CrossFit Coach typically achieves a superior result always with “side benefit” vs. side effect.
What are some examples of CrossFit exercises?
Biking, running, swimming, and rowing in an endless variety of drills. The clean & jerk, snatch, squat, deadlift, push-press, bench-press, and power-clean. Jumping, medicine ball throws and catches, pull-ups, dips, push-ups, handstands, presses to handstand, muscle-ups, ring rows, wall balls, burpees, lunges, sit-ups, and holds. We make regular use of the airdyne bike, rowing, Olympic weight sets, rings, free exercise mat, horizontal bar, plyometrics boxes, medicine balls, and jump rope. There isn’t a strength and conditioning program anywhere that works with a greater diversity of tools, modalities, and drills.
I have to get in shape first before I start?
This is a common misconception! The most elite athlete can come into the gym and find a workout challenging. You will never be “fit” enough. That’s the beauty of CrossFit…that we can scale ANY workout to meet you where you are at. Fitness is a lifelong journey for everyone. Some of the most rewarding experiences, as trainers, are helping people who never knew they could do the things they end up doing!
I have heard CrossFit is really hard, is this true?
CrossFit is as hard as you make it. We encourage people to push to the limits of their own tolerances but only you can make the most out of your own workouts with the amount of work you put into them.
I am afraid I will get too big and bulky?
Unlike bodybuilding, which focuses on isolated and specific movements, CrossFit is based on functional movements that our bodies were designed to do. It is the ultimate way in developing lean body mass, losing fat, and increasing your fitness level. In order for people to get bigger, especially women, there are two things that you would have to make a concerted effort to do. One: pick up very heavy weight on a frequent basis. This is not something we do. Yes, we are very much concerned about your strength and we do lift heavy some days. But this is not our main focus. Two: eat an extremely high calorie diet. For most to gain productive muscle mass takes quite the effort in eating the right foods in a high amount. The majority of the workouts we do provide your muscles with more contractile potential and not hypertrophy (muscle mass).
I feel it is too expensive, is this true?
CrossFit is often difficult to compare to other fitness programs. We offer a variety of classes and options coached by our knowledgable, certified trainers. The reality is with the quality of instruction you get from our trainers; it is personal training at a fraction of the cost.
Can I get a good workout in under 30 minutes?
Yes, this is absolutely what we believe in. More and more research shows that shorter duration/higher intensity workouts yield higher benefits/results. Basically, it just boils down to hard work. But the truth is, the longer the effort, the lower our intensity. If you run 10 miles your intensity will be lower than if you run multiple 400 meter sprints. Cascade does go beyond 30 min on occasion, but the majority of our workouts are shorter in duration, generally with strength or skill work before the workout. If you have a shorter workout, you can work harder by nature which can lend to a better response. No matter who you are or what workouts you do, without hard work you will not receive results, which is why we encourage you to push yourselves as hard as you can both mentally and physically in all that we do.
I have heard you can get hurt doing CrossFit, is this true?
You can injure yourself in any activity, but CrossFit is safer than many activities people perform every day. We like to work with people in 3 stages. First: mechanics (learning how to do the movements with correct technique), Second: Consistency (the ability to do the movements over and over again with safe and relatively efficient technique), Third: Intensity (the speed at which you do the movements). One does not come before the other. We always start with Mechanics.
Since you don’t follow the CrossFit.com programming, what are your goals when programming for the gym?
CrossFit.com provides excellent programming. At Cascade CF, we take the same approach with constantly varied movements and workouts. We choose to offer workouts that may be more easily scaled in group settings and address some of the needs/desires of our community. We generally like to have strength days at least 3x/week if we are not running a strength cycle. We also love to throw in longer/chipper style workouts which tend to be our members favorites. Another approach that we have is to address weaknesses the gym may have as a whole. Things like overhead squats, Olympic lifting, or basic technique with bodyweight movements. Our philosophy is the same as HQ (constantly varied, functional movement at high intensity), but we program more specifically for the goals of our members at Cascade.
I can’t do CrossFit because I don’t want to aggravate back or neck pain from previous injuries.
Numerous clients of ours have come through the doors with previous injuries or tweaks and found relief from the pain by strengthening the muscles around the problem area. All to often people neglect exercising their low back due to fear of injury. Because of this they end up deconditioned, weak, and more susceptible to injury in the future from minor mishaps, which is usually what happens. Taking part in CrossFit will provide you a buffer so that you are less susceptible to these kinds of injuries. The movements and workouts are all completely scalable allowing anyone to take part, or we can always substitute exercises if you are having specific problems. If you do have an injury, we do ask that you really listen to the coaches and take their advice. All to often, people ignore their injury and can make it worse. That is the last thing we want to happen!
What should I eat?
Many of you have probably heard how most CrossFit gyms follow the “paleo diet”. The paleo diet recommends eating lean meats, vegetables (mostly greens), fruits, nuts and seeds, little starch and no sugar. Excessive consumption of high-glycemic carbohydrates is the primary culprit for most modern day diseases like: Coronary heart disease, diabetes, cancer, osteoporosis, obesity and psychological dysfunction. High-glycemic carbs include: rice, bread, candy, potato, sweets, sodas, and most processed carbohydrates. People find that if you stick the the perimeter of the grocery store, you are pretty much golden. Generally, everything inside that is processed and suspect. We realize that eating 100% this way is usually very difficult, so aim to make small changes that will eventually get you eating like this 80-85% of the time. You’ll be amazed at how different you feel and look!
I am coming to visit and would love to drop-in. Can I and how much does it cost?
We love drop-in guests! Our drop-in rate is $15 and feel free to come to any class that works best for you!