Today in CrossFit we did a Conditioning WOD that included the Overhead Squat. The Overhead Squat (OHS) is as much about shoulder flexibility and core strength as it is about leg strength, perhaps even more about flexibility and balance. I’ll be honest; I’ve struggled with the OHS. It isn’t about the weight or my ability to squat it. It’s about my shoulder flexibility more than anything else. As you get down into the deep squat position, you should be able to shrug your shoulders, lock your arms out straight overhead, and actually have those arms somewhat behind your head (i.e., someone should be able to see your ears from the side). When I started doing the OHS, I couldn’t even put my arms that straight overhead with NO WEIGHT! My shoulder flexibility held me back. But, I’ve been working on stretches and using a lacrosse ball to open up the muscles around my scapula and shoulders. It is helping and I can do a better OHS now, but I have a lot more room for improvement before I can add significant weight to this lift.
Strength training using Olympic-style weightlifting was something I avoided until just a few months ago. For the last 30 years, I have primarily done bodyweight training (e.g., push-ups) and some lighter lifting with dumbbells (e.g., bicep curls). That’s about it. But, when I joined my CrossFit gym a little over 5 months ago, weightlifting was a core component of the training. I dreaded it at first. But, now I have come to realize how much the increases in strength have improved my overall fitness, my cardio performance (e.g., long trail runs), and the muscle tone of my body. It is worth the investment of your time and energy.
Took things a bit easy today after a late night getting home. Time to get back into my regular routine after 5 days of little sleep on a business trip to NYC. Warmup: 5 minute jog Pull-ups Conditioning: 3 rounds for time 10 Burpee box jumps (see video below) 10 Overhead Squats (see video below) […]