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Scott Jenkins talks CrossFit Games 2016

Scott gamesCrossFit Blackwater athlete and head coach, Scott Jenkins has qualified for the CrossFit Games 2016 for the second year running in the Masters 45-49 category.

Ahead of his trip to Carson I caught up with him to ask him a few questions about his preparation for this year’s competition.

Scott, we haven’t seen you at any of the UK or European competitions this year – what have your goals been this year?
I have taken a step away from other competitions and have focussed all my efforts on making the return trip to Carson.

My goals this year were:
1)  Get back to the Games
2)  Win an event
3)  Get on the podium
4)  Win!

Of course I want to win it!  It’s going to be tough – Bill Grundler is still the guy to beat in my mind.

So what’s the plan at the Games this year?
Last year I was thrilled to qualify for the Games.  I had been trying for 7 years to get there and I felt that I’d achieved my goal just by going.  The first couple of events out in Carson weren’t great for me and I ended up in 18th after two events with a fight on my hands just to make it into the final.

 

Scott 2015 gamesThis year I mean it to be different.  I feel like I’ve earnt my place and I want to go out there and scare a few people!  If the programming goes my way I don’t see why I can’t be a podium contender.  If there are a lot of one rep maxes and a pistol marathon – maybe not.

How do you think you stack up against the big names in your category – Bill Grundler for example?
I think the odds are slightly in his favour.  My engine is better this year so I think I can challenge him on the met con type workouts. My problem is the strength wods – I lose a lot of ground on those workouts whereas Bill does consistently well across all the board – he nearly always finishes in the top 5 across all events.

I’ve been working hard over the last 3 months – my training plan includes 3 days a week of heavy olympic lifting.  I am working really hard on my weaknesses – I am getting better – maybe not at the pace to get top 5 at the games in those events but if I can squeeze into the top 10 it won’t have such a profound effect on my overall rankings.

So is there anything you’ll do differently this year with the benefit of last year’s Games experience to draw on?
I made a lot of rookie mistakes at the Games last year.  I took my top off too much!  Got sweat all over my equipment and made some movements even harder than they were already.

You have no idea how much you sweat out there – especially in the tennis stadium.  It’s like being in a sauna – the air burns your lungs.

How do you prepare for that – you’re based at your CrossFit gym in Witham, Essex with the variable British weather and then suddenly you have to transplant yourself into California and make your body perform optimally?
Fortunately we have a glass roof in the box at CrossFit Blackwater.  When it’s sunny I train directly underneath it.  I put the rower outside when it’s sunny.  It’s not the same as California but I do everything I can!

What’s different to last year in Scott world?
Now I don’t have two jobs.  Last year I did an eight hour day in an office in London, commuted 3 hours a day and then coached 2-3 hours most evenings.  So I have more time for training and recovery.

I’m on a special masters programme – Ben Bergeron’s CompTrain.  I train 2-3 hours a day, 5 days a week.

I feel fitter.  I’m a little bit stronger – it’s hard to get stronger when you’re really old!  Now it’s more about fighting against losing strength.  But I can and have got fitter.

Tell me about injury – how do you balance the need to train enough and keeping the volume to a level that doesn’t cause injury?
I trained so safely last year because I was so nervous about getting injured.  This year I’m training sensibly but I’m pushing the intensity as much as I can.

I have a strain in my supraspinatus at the moment so I’m working around that.  I have to be careful with muscle ups and snatching.

Do you think the Masters are sidelined by CrossFit?  You’re scheduled before the main individuals events, there are no offsite workouts – do you think you are treated as a lesser category?
Not at all!  There’s not as much interest in the Masters – we don’t draw the big crowds.  CrossFit HQ provide us with the same warmup facilities, same soft tissue therapists – we are in the same stadiums…  I think we are very well looked after!

Spectators want to see athletes doing superhuman things.  Although the stuff we do as masters is amazing for our age, it doesn’t make as good viewing as the individuals with their superhuman feats!  That’s why the big sponsorship and attention is on the individuals competition.

The way the Games is programmed is perfect.  It means I get to do my bit and then sit back, relax and watch the individuals and enjoy the rest of my trip.

Masters 45-49 1015

What’s the vibe with the other guys out in Carson – super competitive or friendly?
It’s pretty friendly and there’s lots of banter.  But inside we are all competitive beasts!  It doesn’t matter how friendly we are – we all want to beat each other like nothing on earth.  Most of the guys have competitive experience from other sports so there’s a lot going on under the surface.

Who have you got rooting for you at the Games this year?
All the guys at CrossFit Blackwater, my CrossFit gym in Essex, are really supportive – I know last year they were all catching up on the action when they woke up in the morning. The time difference means that a lot of the events happen late at night real time in the UK.  One of the guys said that he woke up his neighbours yelling at the live feed when I came really close to winning the third event SQT last year!!

Read part two of Scott’s interview.

You Don’t Have to Be Fit to Start CrossFit!

Many people who have never given CrossFit a go before tend to think of it is an “elite” club for people who are already extremely fit and strong, however here at CrossFit Blackwater that couldn’t be further from the truth! In fact, we specialise in taking people who have never worked out in their life to becoming stronger, fitter and healthier individuals!

CrossFit is designed for everyone – from beginners who have little to no fitness whatsoever, to those who are already active and are looking to challenge themselves or try something new. One of the reasons why CrossFit is loved by so many people is because it can cater to everyone’s needs. Its programming is unique in the way it can be scaled and the classes can be completed by anyone willing to give it a good go! Here at our Witham gym, our coaches are committed to helping all of our members nail the basics and perfect their movement and technique before moving onto anything more challenging.

What to expect at your first CrossFit class?

In our free taster classes we offer an introduction into a range of key movements and run through these to ensure you have the right technique before moving onto normal sessions. You’ll also take part in a short workout (WOD) to get your heart rate pumping.

CrossFit is extremely “scalable”, which means it’s completely up to you how hard you want to push yourself, which is usually dependent on your current fitness level. With a little hard work and commitment you will undoubtedly notice rapid improvements week by week and feel great about yourself inside and out.

What makes CrossFit different to other sports?

Our community here at CrossFit Blackwater will soon become your friends and cheerleaders as you continue on your fitness journey! You will always be supported by our professional CrossFit coaches and members – something you don’t often find at regular gyms in Witham.

Why will you love it?

CrossFit gives an amazing sense of achievement, whether it’s your first pull-up, box jump or squat. Coupled with our CrossFit workout routines, a healthy lifestyle will result in a much improved physique as well as a fitter, faster and stronger you! Not to mention you’ll feel noticeably happier and more confident in yourself.

As well as all of this, we have a lot of fun as we do it! Why not try CrossFit out for yourself and book your place onto one of our free taster classes? Give it a go and, you never know, it could change your life for the better.

box jumps or step ups

CrossFit Blackwater: the Eco-Friendly Way to Get Fit!

CrossFit is different to visiting your regular gym – we believe in a straightforward, minimalist approach to fitness, which focuses on what needs to be done and how to get there. Unlike a lot of your run-of-the-mill gyms in Witham, we don’t believe getting fit should be turned into a pamper session! We’re here so that you can see results and gain your strength and fitness. We also happen to offer a much greener and environmentally friendly way of getting fit (in comparison to a regular gym near here) and here’s why!

Firstly, here at CrossFit Blackwater, you won’t find rows upon rows of electricity-hogging exercise machines. This drastically reduces energy consumption, while freeing up space. The majority of our equipment includes bars and free weights, barbells, kettle bells, boxes and more. Here at Witham’s premier CrossFit gym, there are no buttons to press or dials to turn – we believe that the most important piece of equipment is YOU.

While striving for our fitness goals, we believe it is important to have a sustainable and healthy lifestyle outside of the CrossFit gym too! To see the results you strive for, it is extremely important to eat “real”, healthy foods – whether that is locally-produced or homemade where possible. Eating less sugar and fewer processed foods is something all of us could benefit from!

CrossFit is a fantastic way to begin your journey into a fitter, stronger you, but it can also kick start a healthier and greener approach to your everyday life. Whether that means ditching your car for a bike ride or walk to work, or opting for locally grown vegetables over foods with thousands of air miles attached!

Here at CrossFit Blackwater, we help our members get into the best shape of their lives, while using minimal equipment and energy in the process. If you want to start leading a healthier lifestyle, why not get in touch with one of our CrossFit trainers today and book yourself onto a free taster class? You’ll enjoy it, get a whole lot fitter and even do your bit for the environment by switching from your regular gym. So what are you waiting for? Call or email us today! We look forward to hearing from you!

Enjoy Reaching Your Goals with CrossFit Blackwater

Now that January and February are out of the way, your fitness resolutions and motivations could be wavering a little, especially if you’re not seeing results as quickly as you’d like. When you have a specific fitness goal in mind, it can be very easy to get caught up in the outcome, meaning you sometimes don’t enjoy the process or reflect upon the achievements along the way.

 

By enjoying the process of CrossFit training and achieving small milestones, you are much more likely to stay motivated and achieve your long-term goals. Our culture of “instant gratification” means many of us can be impatient and want to see immediate results. However we know with strength and fitness, this simply isn’t the case: it is very much a journey in order to reach your eventual goals.

 

Trusting the process of CrossFit and taking advice from our coaches and personal trainers in Witham will make you far more patient and when the all important milestones arrive, they will be all the more sweet! By successfully building habits and routines both in and away from the gyms in Witham, your goals will take care of themselves. It’s extremely important to be consistent with your training, show up regularly to sessions and translate your hard work into your every day life, such as your diet.

 

Willpower is what will kick start your journey into a fitter, better you, however it is habit that will keep you there. Hence, it’s vital to enjoy the process of training, celebrate the small triumphs and reflect on where you are and how far you have come. Here at CrossFit Blackwater in Witham, we can assure you that with the right level of motivation, you will see amazing improvements in your fitness, strength and even your general health. What’s more, you can benefit from the social side of CrossFit by meeting a great group of people who will encourage you every step of the way.

 

If you want to begin the process of becoming the best version of you, why not sign up to one of our free taster classes and try CrossFit for yourself? We love welcoming new members through our doors!