We hear a lot about what it takes to be an athlete, but what about a solid, should we say ultimate, human. Today we dive into the movement basics that you need to be on the road to becoming the ultimate human. We define ultimate human as someone who can live well into their 90’s. If you haven’t read the first article in the series “Do These 7 Things First” check it out and come back to this one.
Crawl, Stand, Walk, then Run
As any toddler will tell you, you have to crawl before you can stand, stand before you can walk, and walk before you can run. That’s true for being an ultimate human as well. The first step is being able to crawl. If there were a fire in your home, could you crawl under the smoke to get out. Second on the list is can you stand, and not just to flex in the mirror? Can you stand on one foot for :30 seconds? Go ahead, give it a try, I’ll wait. If that was easy, close your eyes. Same rules apply to touching the floor, can you do it? Can you do it standing on one leg? You pick things up all day long it’s an important skill to have.
Squat and Stand Up
To keep yourself from assisted living you need to be able to squat, at minimum to 90 degrees. Don’t think it’s that important, can you get to the toilet, yeah it’s that important. Lose the ability to perform a basic squat and you’re going to need someone to help you with daily living. Along those same lines, can you get up off the floor? What if you fall, can you get yourself back up? If you’re reading this and think this is WAY too basic, can you get off the floor with no hands? These are important skills that involve balance, flexibility and coordination.
Lift Your Arms and Step All The Way Up
The last two on the list of basic human abilities are to lift your arms, fully above your head, without pain and be able to step on a 20” box. The majority of kitchens are designed with upper cabinets or shelves, if you can’t lift your arms up, getting that jar from the middle shelf is going to become really challenging. The more pain you’re in the less likely you are to do that motion and the less flexible you become over time. The 20” box step is the average height of 2 stair steps. If you can do 2 you can do one, this insures you’re not having to hit up your realtor and only look at ranch style homes. It also makes navigating the world much easier.
To recap the basics, Stand, Crawl, Walk, Squat, Touch the Floor, Get Up Off the Floor, Reach Up Overhead and Step to a 20” Box. If any of these things cause you pain, that’s where your journey starts. Fixing the issue so you can do these things and many more pain free. This will set you up with a great foundation.
Sara Mozingo is the Owner, head coach, and programing wizard at CrossFit Icehouse. When she’s not developing rep schemes and diving into the nerdery she enjoys hanging out in nature hiking trails or climbing rocks with her side-kick Mr. Mosely.
I’m no different than you. I become impatient, I allow myself to get distracted, I distract myself, I look for the new shiny thing when the shine has worn off the last new shiny thing…
If you’ve fallen off the CrossFit wagon for whatever reason and think it’s too late…keep reading, get back on the wagon, and ride with me!
I started training at Icehouse because it felt different than any place I’ve ever worked out.
At 37 years old, with just over 1 year of training, going to 4 – 5 CrossFit classes a week…
I got in the absolute best shape of my life
- “Fran” time was under 4:30
- 5K Run time was just over 26 mins
I had the best body composition of my life
- 76 lbs muscle mass,
- 13.7% body fat
I should be doing more…I should be doing something different, right?…I’m bored…
- I stopped going to classes and trained on my own most of the time, no friends
- My workouts were a job, they were checklists to complete, no fun
- I ate outside of my normal schedule and my normal diet more way often, no nutrition
- I didn’t do any functional fitness outside of the gym; no play
Honestly, I took for granted the friends, the fun and the play of training in classes and let my nutrition take a dive.
…And how’d that turn out?
About as well as you’d imagine
My fitness regressed
- Lost 90 seconds on my mile time
- All of my gymnastics became more difficult (pull-ups, toes to bar…)
- I felt sluggish, tired, lackadaisical
My body composition regressed as well
- Lost over 1 lb of muscle
- Gained 4% body fat
Since July I’ve been training 4-5 days a week, attending 3 minimum of CrossFit classes a week at Icehouse, and getting an additional workout in, outside of normal class time if needed.
I’ve also recently added in stretching for 20 minutes 4 nights a week, playing on a basketball court for 45 minutes 4 days a week and intentionally meal prepping every week.
…And how has that turned out?
I don’t yet have the body comp or fitness data (that’ll come with the “Fall Back to Basics 28-Day Nutrition Challenge” here at Icehouse in September)
But I’ll tell you what I do know for sure right now
I feel sore! Don’t get me wrong, the first few weeks pretty consistently, and a day or two a week even now, I feel super sore. There’s a difference to it thought, there’s a familiarity. It’s very similar to when I first started training at Icehouse. I feel my body growing stronger in places that had been neglected over the winter. It’s a good thing.
I feel energized throughout the day! I took out dairy and gluten once again. If you haven’t tried eliminating those 2 items from your diet, I encourage you to try, for 3 weeks and see if you feel a difference.
I feel connected! Workouts aren’t a job, they are an hour that I get to spend with people I really, really like, being goofy and getting sweaty all at the same time.
I sleep better, stretching before bedtime is a great way to start slowing down your mind and body before bed.
I’m a better version of myself! I’m stronger now because I know that I can fall down, pick myself up and get back into habits that support the person that I want to be. It’s never too late!!
For More Info
If you’re interested in our “Fall into Basics 28-Day Nutrition Challenge” check out our Facebook Event and get all the details.
If you’re interested in jumping back into fitness yourself, take some time to schedule a meeting with a coach here at Icehouse and we’ll get you started!