When we first meet new members, they invariably tell us they want to look better, feel stronger, and be healthier. They really want to look better naked and not get hurt. 

I get it…You join Brigade and take time out of your day to train with us and you want to reap all the benefits that you can in that hour.   Here is the problem: many – if not most – members (I’m guilty of this) try to speed up their results by making 1 or more of 3 big mistakes. They go TOO FAST.  They go TOO HEAVY. They cheat the RANGE OF MOTION.

Any one of these mistakes can quickly lead to an injury which actually slows down your progress.  Wait – didn’t you want to get there faster??? 

There are no shortcuts to building strength. You have to put in the work, learn the form, develop the stability, build muscle endurance…and so on.  Small incremental improvements over time compound and get you to your goal.  Consistency and practice is the key – not trying to PR every time you touch a bar.

Could this be you?  My advice is to:
  1. Slow Down
  2. Lower the Weight
  3. Work on your Range of Motion

Over the next 3 issues I am going to address each of these mistakes.  Today let’s begin with lifting TOO FAST..

There are 3 things that happen when you move too fast:

  • Loss of Mind-Muscle Connection: When you lift too quickly, you might not be fully aware of the muscles you’re targeting, and you may not engage them as effectively. Slowing down allows you to focus on the specific muscle group you intend to work, enhancing the mind-muscle connection. This can lead to better muscle recruitment and more effective workouts. ‘ 
  • Compensating with Non-Target Muscles and Mechanics: Rapid movements can lead to using momentum and other muscle groups to complete a lift, taking the emphasis away from the target muscle. By lifting more slowly and with control, you can ensure that the intended muscle group is doing the majority of the work, promoting balanced muscle development and reducing the risk of overuse injuries in other muscles. Can you see how this might lead to injury or short change your growth? If I should be lifting with my legs but I am using my back too much what will happen?
  • Time Under Tension: Time under tension (TUT) is an essential factor in muscle growth and strength development. Slower lifting tempos increase TUT, which can lead to greater muscle stimulation and growth. If you’re lifting too fast, you actually need to use heavier weights to achieve the same level of muscle stress, which can increase the risk of injury, especially if your form is compromised.

The solution to counter these issues involves adopting a slower lifting cadence. Incorporate deliberate pauses and exercise greater control over your movements throughout the entire range of motion.


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Try using a 3111 tempo. The 3-1-1-1 tempo method is a specific approach to controlling the pace of your weightlifting movements during resistance training exercises. It involves four phases for each repetition of an exercise, with each number representing the duration in seconds for that phase. Here’s an explanation of each phase:

  • Eccentric Phase (3 seconds): This is the first phase of the movement, often referred to as the “negative” or “lowering” phase. During this phase, you lower the weight or resistance in a controlled manner for a count of three seconds. This phase is essential for building strength and muscle as it emphasizes the muscle lengthening under tension.
  • Pause at the Bottom (1 second): After completing the eccentric phase and reaching the fully stretched position (e.g., the bottom of a squat or bench press), you pause for one second. This brief pause helps you maintain control and prevent bouncing or using momentum.
  • Concentric Phase (1 second): This is the “positive” or “lifting” phase of the movement. You lift or push the weight back to the starting position with a one-second duration. This phase focuses on the muscle contraction and shortening.
  • Pause at the Top (1 second): Once you reach the starting or “top” position of the movement, you pause for one second. This pause allows you to maintain control, prevent excessive acceleration, and ensure proper muscle engagement.

The 3-1-1-1 tempo method is known for its emphasis on time under tension (TUT) throughout the entire range of motion. By slowing down both the lowering and lifting phases and including pauses, you increase the duration your muscles are under load. This extended TUT can lead to improved muscle engagement, better mind-muscle connection, and potentially greater muscle hypertrophy (growth) and strength gains.


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 Sept 11- October 21, 2023
💪6 Weeks of Beginner Friendly Classes Designed to Supercharge Your Fitness
💪Super Simple to Follow Custom Nutrition Plan with Exclusive App, Kitchen Clean Out Guidance, Shopping Lists, Recipes, and More
💪Before & After Measurements & InBody Scans 
 💪The Support of The Area’s Top Coaches & Community Behind You 100%
Cost: $499 for the 6 Entire Week Program
🔥Orientation and Body Scans: Saturday, September 9th 8-9am at CrossFit Brigade, but we are also able to perform these before or after your first week of classes if you prefer to do it then or schedule an appointment at your convenience.

🔥Challenge begins Monday, September 11th.

🔥Weekly Classes are Held:  M-T-TH 6:30am, 9:30am, or 6:15pm with an Optional Saturday Bonus Session @ 9:30am!


Upon completion of “Couch to CrossFit,” graduates will be fully ready to enter our regular CrossFit program if they wish to continue their fitness journey at CrossFit Brigade 🙂