Tuesday 3.12 : I Pause Therefore I Am

Tuesday 3.12 : I Pause Therefore I Am

Why do we do pause in our lifting at times?

What does it do other than serve as just another annoying thing Lando can cook up to completely f**k up your life for an hour every now and then?

I promise there is a reason as to why we do pause work around 70-80% of the way through our lifting cycle, and here I promise to below explain at least in part the reason behind the madness.

First let’s identify exactly what I mean when I refer to “Pause Work”. 99.9% of the time I program pause work into Strength time of CrossFit classes. It literally means you are to pause, or stop moving, like someone hit “pause” on life. The most common place for a pause to be inserted into a work set is at the 1) apex or bottom of a movement’s cycle and/or 2) in the recovery position mainly for overhead movements.

Next, let me explain why we pause when lifting. There are 3 reasons why I program pauses in our lifts regardless of what the lift or scheme is.

  1. Added/different difficulty than usual: just the same as why we use HIIT as our primary training regimen, it is good to change up how we lift as well. This forces/allows us to go about the actions during the lifting a different way than usual which allows us to use different parts of our brain and nervous system. It also can force us to use different muscles in different ways than normal. Different = more fit in this case.
  2. Learn/comprehend/practice the idea of generating our own explosive power rather than from momentum or bouncing out of a position. Example being when we pause at the bottom of a squat. Usually we bounce out the bottom and ride out the little boost we get from the stretch-reflex of said bounce. Pausing in the bottom of the squat forces us to quickly and as powerfully as we can generate enough force to stand the weight up without any momentum. This would be similar to a clean where we get buried due to it being exceptionally heavy.
  3. Self coaching. Tired of hearing us coaches tell you to “get lower” in your squat when you feel like you are very time? Tired of missing a max push press or jerk because the bar ends up in your frontal plane though you tried harder than ever to keep the bar over your midline? Both of these failures can be easily snuffed out by just stopping your lift at a certain point and assessing the situation. Not low enough in a squat routinely? Pause in the bottom of a rep, “your bottom”, and see where you are. Then, if not low enough, push your knees out, pick your chest up, and try to get down more. Usually this is all that is needed to get that last inch or two.

Pausing Today
Today has pauses at the END of the movement. The split jerk is unique in that the entire movement contains some difficulty, even after it is considered over and done with because of it being a lift with heavy weight over our heads.

Pausing in the catch position, in other words in your split, allows time to assess your receiving position and reinforce proper movement (#3 above) but also uniquely involves reason #1. While it isn’t the same difficulty in the movement as a pause squat might create, holding the catch position of any jerk involves heavy weight staying overhead which will help reinforce proper positioning when recovering and strength in that position. It is almost impossible to recover from a held pause in a split without doing it properly.

If you weren’t planning on it already, try your best to make it in today. It is a great day to learn and get better!

Strength: Split Jerk
– Hold second rep in catch position for 3 seconds

WOD: For Time
21 Pull-ups
5 Split Jerk
5 Front Squat
15 Pull-ups
5 Split Jerk
5 Front Squat
9 Pull-ups
5 Split Jerk
5 Front Squat
15 Pull-ups
5 Split Jerk
5 Front Squat
21 Pull-ups
5 Split Jerk
5 Front Squat

S: Jumping Pull-ups, 75/55, no weight
L1: Banded Pull-ups, 135/95, 25/15
Rx+: CTB Pull-ups, 185/135


Lift: Split Jerk
– pause for 3 seconds in each set

Accessory: 50 Strict HSPU
100 Push-ups + 50 Barbell Press

Conditioning: 21-15-9
Shoulder to OH
Cal AB
Box Jumps 24/20, full stand

The Program
1. Strength and WOD

2. Start each couplet every 7:00
– 0-6:59
KB Swing 53/35
Front Squat 115/75
– 7:00-13:59
3 Rounds
10 Toes to Bar
10 Burpees
– 14:00-20:59
2 Bar Muscle Ups
3 Cal AB
2 Bar MU
6 Cal AB
2 Bar MU
9 Cal AB
4 Bar MU
12 Cal AB…

Continue on this path for 7m

Click Here to Schedule a Free First Class→

Thank you for your interest in CrossFit Lando!  The first step is to set up a no obligation, complimentary intro session where we take you through the essential movements used in CrossFit, BootCamp, or Weightlifting. We also answer any questions you may have about the program and put you through a short, intense WOD (workout of the day) to give you a feel for what we do.

Please sign up below and a coach from our staff will reach out to you with information.

Intro Signup