What the heck is "Accessory Work"?

You're going to be hearing that term a lot soon:

I mean,  you can pretty much figure out that it means
"extra stuff," but why?
How many of you remember your first CrossFit "warmup,"
sweating buckets, panting like a dog in the summertime,
hearing the coach say, "Ok now that we're done with the warmup..."
and then thinking "Wait... you mean we're just getting STARTED??"

Rigorous warm-up, mobility, strength or skill, a brutal workout,
and, starting in a couple of weeks, accessory work too.

But it's not because we're sadists (promise!).
And it's not because we like seeing you try weird things
(most accessory movements are weird).

See?  Proof.

See?  Proof.


Accessory work rounds you out.

Can CrossFit give you everything you need?
Yes.  Absolutely.  IF you move perfectly.

But if you don't... if you've got a desk job... if you've got a nagging injury...
if you haven't gotten around to mobility homework...
if you're still trying to balance working out, nutrition, kids, job, etc...

You could maybe use a little extra core work.
Or some help getting your back strong enough to maintain good posture.
Or some extra grip strength to bang out a few more pull-ups or deadlifts.

So that's what we'll give you.

Accessory Work will be programmed Monday-Friday
and will never take more than 5-10 minutes.

It will be an optional, but highly encouraged, add-on for you at the end of class.
We'll clean-up, get scores up, high five, and then it'll be accessory work time.

It's going to give you what you need to eliminate weaknesses,
prevent injury, rehab old injuries, and get you to be the best athlete you can be!

Get pumped!

What's your "Why"? (It's probably not what you think)

All over the internet right now,
motivational sources encourage you to find your "Why."
(I've encouraged people to do it too).

The thinking goes that if your WHY - 
your reason for doing what you're doing - 
is big enough, you can overcome any HOW.
It's good advice.  And I believe that it's true.

Here's the problem... it's overplayed.
And like anything overplayed, it loses its meaning.

And so I have facebook friends (and I bet you do too)
who post up a picture of their baby or their parents
and they say "Finally starting my fitness journey.  This is my WHY!"

...and then a week later, or a month, or two months they've quit working out.

Now, I'm not questioning their love for their children or their parents,
and if you've done that, I'm not questioning yours either.
But I will say that if you can quit your journey at all,
especially if it only takes weeks or months,
then it wasn't really your WHY.

A WHY that can overcome any HOW
is more than a 20-second instagram post.


Finding your WHY - your real WHY - is painful.
It can be scary.
It's difficult.
Because you have to take an honest look at yourself,
and when you do, you sometimes find things you don't like.
But it's also how you find that thing
that really can drive you to achieve the impossible.

Because overplayed or not, a real WHY is powerful.
A real WHY can overcome any HOW.

It just has to be real.

Intensity is Everything

When people try new restaurants, I often ask them how they liked it.
If they did like it, you know what a lot of people say?

"It was great!  They give you so much food!"

But I've been to enough restaurants that give you
enormous portions of terrible food to believe that
More does not equal better.

Greg Glassman, founder of CrossFit, wrote in 2007 that "Intensity is the independent variable most commonly associated with maximizing favorable adaptation to exercise."


It's something we (myself included) forget a lot in the CrossFit world.
We're so caught up in the "more is better" mentality
that we think Volume (how much you train) is the route to fitness.
More workouts equals more results, right?

We see the elite CrossFit athletes doing 4 or 5 workouts per day.
They do strength, then a metcon, then olympic lifting,
then a run, then a metcon, then more lifting maybe...
And we think that since they do it, we should probably do it too.

But the amount of training they do is not what makes them great.

And more workouts, or longer workouts aren't going to make you great either.
What makes you great, is Intensity.

Going all out twice a week will get you way farther
than doing a light workout 5 times a week.

Here are the 5 hardest workouts I've ever done...
They left me dizzy, I couldn't speak,
I barely knew my name, I think maybe I saw Jesus:

1) The third time I did Fran (21-15-9: thrusters @ 95lbs, pull-ups)
2) The first time I did 12.4 (AMRAP in 12 minutes: 150 wallballs @ 20lbs, 90 double-unders, 30 muscle-ups)
3) The second time I did 10x100m sprints with 90 seconds rest
4) EMOM x 20 minutes: 50' sled drag @ 200lbs
5) "Gwen" 15-12-9 of clean and jerks, touch and go only

Total work load across ALL 5 of those workouts is less than 40 minutes.

If you can do an 8 minute AMRAP and then go for a run,
you didn't go nearly hard enough.

The answer, the secret, the key to amazing results
isn't volume, it's intensity.
It's not doing more, it's going as hard as you possibly can.