AND WHAT THEY MEAN
AND WHAT THEY MEAN
We know it can be a djungle of different terms when it comes to training,
therefore, we have listed some of the most common ones for you in this list.
Active Recovery – This is one way to spend your “rest” day. So instead of lounging on the couch all day you’ll schedule some sort of low-intensity activity like light walking or yoga. The reason why you might want to do this, instead of nothing, is that incorporating gentle movement into these days can help the circulation (which can ease soreness and reduce muscle fatigue). And remember, whether it’s gentle activity or complete rest, your body needs time to recover—when you work out, you’re breaking down muscle fibers, and recovery is when the real magic happens as your muscles rebuild stronger.
AMRAP: As Many Reps/Rounds as Possible – that is, given a specific time period. Often lasting 10, 20, or 30 minutes. AMRAP workouts challenge athletes to complete as many rounds of a series of movements in the allotted time.
Box: A box is a barebones gym to some, but heaven to a CrossFitter. While many CrossFitters train on their own from home or non-CrossFit gyms, “boxes” have all the equipment necessary for the range of WODs (more on those below) without the bells, whistles, and bicep curl bars of a “chrome-and-tone” gym.
Basal metabolic rate (BMR) – The number of calories the body needs to keep all organs functioning normally when at rest. It is given as a calories per day figure. Click here to found out whats your BMR.
Cardio – Term used to refer to training or exercise which develops cardiovascular conditioning, by increasing heart rate (known also as aerobic exercise) and burning calories. Running, walking, swimming and team sports such as football or netball are all examples of ‘cardio’.
Cool-Down. This is what you do at the end of your workout. The goal is to gradually bring your body back to a resting state by lowering your heart rate and calming your nervous system. This is typically done with lighter movements and passive stretches (ones that are held in place for about 10 seconds or more).
Cheat (or cheat rep) – Term used in weight training to describe failing to keep perfect form when performing a rep, and having to use another body part to complete the rep. An example might be not keeping your back completely straight when performing a bicep curl, or pushing your hands on your legs to complete a leg press. Cheat reps might enable someone to lift a heavier weight or perform more reps than they would be able to if they weren’t ‘cheating’. Opinion on how useful cheat reps are is divided. But generally, if you haven’t been working out for long or are new to lifting, it is strongly recommended that you keep as perfect a form as possible. Not using proper technique increases the risk of injury.
Compound movements – Or compound lifts. These are movements which exercise multiple muscle groups.
Core Training – The “core” often refers to the muscles that make up the mid-section of the body, including the ever-elusive six-pack. However, it is much more effective to think of the body’s core as the center of gravity and not an actual group of muscles. When we look at how the body functions during upright movement patterns such as walking, lifting an object off of the ground or moving an object from one place to another, we have to consider the fact that any muscle that attaches to the spine, rib cage or pelvis influences movement around the body’s center of gravity.
Dynamic Warm-Up This is what you should be doing before exercise to raise your heart rate and body temperature in preparation for the workout. During this type of warm-up, you moving through stretches and light exercises without stopping (as opposed to a passive stretches, which are held in place, like you do in a cool-down). This helps increase mobility and range of motion so you can get deeper into exercises.
Endurance training – Program intended to increase a person’s maximum exercise capacity (endurance or stamina). For instance, someone who is preparing for a marathon and trying to extend the length of time or distance they can run for might benefit from endurance training.
For Time: Think you’re fast? See how you stack up with the rest of the CrossFit world by measuring the time it takes to complete a prescribed workout. Though not all CrossFit workouts have a timed component, the protocol is famous for pushing athletes to race against each other and the clock.
Functional Moves – “This generally refers to exercises that help you move and feel better in every day life,” says Lefkowith. These exercises often mimic the ways you move outside of the gym—for example, you’d use many of the same muscle groups to perform a squat as you would to crouch down and tie your shoe.
Fixed resistance – Type of strength training which uses plate loaded machines (such as the abductor/adductor machine, lateral raise, back extension, leg extension or leg curl). The user moves through a fixed range of motion when performing the press or lift.
Flexibility – The range of motion in a joint. Stretching exercises can help to improve flexibility and benefit overall mobility.
Free weights – Strength training which utilises dumbbells and barbells (such as bicep curls, deadlift or squats). When lifting free weights, the participant will need to support their own posture and form during a lift; so their use requires good technique (form).
Heart rate reserve – Sometimes shortened to HRR, this is the variation between someone’s resting heart rate and maximum heart rate. HRR is used in the Karvonen formula to help determine cardiovascular exercise intensity as a percentage.
High impact exercise – Activity in which both feet leave the floor, and cause the weight of the body to land on the joints when returning to the ground, such as running or jumping. High impact exercises may be preferable for those who are not at increased risk of joint problems, and want to burn lots of calories through intense exercise.
HIIT- HIIT stands for high-intensity interval training. “This refers to tough quick, intense bursts of exercise, followed by short recovery periods. This type of training gets and keeps your heart rate up,” explains Laferrara, while also (typically) decreasing the overall amount of time you spend training. This workout is great for burning fat because the intense intervals help kick-start the process known as excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (AKA the “afterburn effect”), which helps you burn more calories even after you stop working out as your body has to work harder and take in more oxygen to return to its resting state.
Interval Training – An interval is simply a period of activity or a period of rest. While this often refers to HIIT workouts, explains Lefkowith, you can implement intervals in pretty much any workout. Maybe that’s 30 seconds of work and 15 seconds of rest, or 15 minutes of work and 2 minutes of rest—it depends on what you’re doing and what your goals are.
Isometrics – “Isometric exercises are where you hold a position under tension and just stay in that position for a set amount of time,” says Lefkowith. Think wall sits and planks. “They are a great way to build stability and strength. And holding a position that is uncomfortable can help build mental strength so you can even push harder during your workouts.”
Low impact exercise – Activity where there is always at least one foot on the ground, or joints do not have to bear the full weight of the body. Swimming and using a cross trainer are examples.
Maximum heart rate – There are different methods of calculating what a person’s maximum heart rate is. The most commonly used formula is: 220 – (age) However, some studies have questioned the accuracy of this formula, and multiple others have emerged. Someone’s target heart rate for exercise will be determined taking their maximum heart rate into consideration. There are several different target heart rate zones, depending on what level of exercise intensity is desired (or practical based on ability), and a variety of formulae that can be used to calculate them (such as the Karvonen formula). The majority of these target heart rate zones will fall between 50 and 85 percent of a person’s maximum heart rate.
Metcon: Short for “metabolic conditioning,” metcons are designed to train stamina, endurance, and conditioning. Unlike WODs— which can also include purely strength or skill-based workouts— metcons generally include some sort of timed component performed at high intensity.
Metabolic Conditioning – Similar to HIIT, metabolic conditioning is often used to refer to high-intensity exercise performed to the point of being out of breath or experiencing muscle soreness. Here is why this overused term ought to be retired from the lexicon: Metabolism is the chemical process by which a biological organism produces energy for muscular contraction. That means that any exercise requiring a muscle contraction (which in itself requires energy) is a form of metabolic conditioning. Standing from your chair after reading this post requires your metabolism to fuel your muscles. Therefore, it is more appropriate to describe the level of effort required to perform the planned activity, such as low-intensity, moderate-intensity, high-intensity or maximal intensity.
Negative repetition (negative reps) – Lift performed with more emphasis on the eccentric stage, where the muscle lengthens. This allows the participant to perform reps (or rather half reps) with a heavier load. (To do this without a training partner, the person performing the rep would set the safety rails at a suitable position above their head, enabling them to manoeuvre out from under the bar. They would then put the bell and weights back in the starting position, before getting into position again to perform their next negative rep.)
One rep max (one repetition maximum) – Also referred to as 1RM. The highest amount of weight a person is able to lift performing one repetition. This number refers to a specific lift. For instance, a person’s 1RM for bench press is likely to be higher than their 1RM for a one-arm bicep curl.
Overload principle – The concept that the workload of an exercise must be progressively increased over time, to improve fitness, strength, endurance and performance. For instance, when performing cardiovascular exercise such as running or swimming, a person will strive to improve their fitness by gradually increasing their speed or distance travelled.
Overtraining – Exercising to a point where the body does not have enough time to recover, leading to decreased physical performance. Overtraining can cause pain, exhaustion and sleep disruption. It can also result in a change in resting heart rate, and increase the risk of injuries.
Plyometric training – Sometimes referred to as ‘plyometrics’ and ‘plyos’. This type of exercise utilises quick, explosive movements to increase strength.
Range of motion – A measure of how able a joint is to facilitate movement, be it flexion, extension, internal or external rotation, abduction, adduction and so on. This measure is typically given in degrees. Active range of motion refers to the amount of movement that can be achieved by the participant on their own. Passive range of motion refers to the amount of movement present when examined by a physiotherapist or physician.
Reps – Shorthand for repetitions. Saying 12 reps means doing an exercise 12 times.
Rest – The pause taken following the completion of a set of exercises.
Resistance – Resistance means how much weight your muscles are working against to complete a movement. That can mean anywhere from your own bodyweight to a set of five-pound dumbbells to a 50-pound kettlebell.
RPE – This stands for rate of perceived exertion, and refers to intensity. It’s a point of reference that trainers often use to communicate how hard you should be working since what feels easy or challenging is different for everyone. On the RPE scale a 1 pretty much means zero effort while a 10 means you’re working harder than you thought you possibly could.
Sets – A set refers to how many times you repeat a given number of reps. For example, one set might be 12 reps of push-ups—repeating for three sets means you’ll do that three times through.
Strength Training – Strength training means using resistance to work your muscles; that can be your bodyweight, dumbbells, kettlebells, sand bags, resistance bands, etc. The goal of this type of workout is to increase muscle mass. Getting stronger helps improve everyday performance (from sports to regular life), prevent injuries, and increase your metabolism.
Stretches – Carrying out a range of muscle stretches may help participants improve flexibility and suppleness when performed after a workout. Stretching is not likely to prevent the onset of DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) but it may help to increase the range of motion in joints.
Super Set – Super setting means pairing two exercises and doing them back-to-back, explains Lefkowith. There are a few ways to do these: You could save time by working two different muscle groups (like arms and legs) so you don’t need to rest in between exercises, because one muscle group is recovering while the other is working. Or, you could do two exercises that work the same area to completely fatigue one muscle group. Another option is to pair “push” and “pull” movements—for example, a push-up and a pull-up. “Super sets can be helpful if you are short on time and still want to focus on building strength,” explains says Lefkowith. And because you’re doing movements paired together, you’re likely to raise your heart rate, too.
Tabata – Tabata is a popular high-intensity interval training protocol. It means 20 seconds of all-out effort followed by 10 seconds of rest, repeated eight times for four minutes total. It’s known for it’s insane fat-burning power.
Upper body workout – An upper body workout consists of exercises which focus on the muscles in the upper body, such as the shoulders, back, chest and arms. This might utilise pulley machines, free weights and bodyweight exercises.
Warm up – Series of movements and stretches used to get the body ready for exercise. Warming up increases heart rate and muscle temperature. Carrying out a warm up before partaking in exercise helps to reduce the risk of injury, and can improve the efficacy of a work out.
WOD: The “Workout of the Day” is the workout CrossFitters perform on a given day. Many individuals and affiliates follow WODs, though others do their own programming (or “bro”-gramming, for the muscle lovers out there).