Call us: 540-493-1505
Call us: 540-493-1505

Routine is the Enemy: AOCF Programming

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Routine is the enemy.

We are seeking to continuously evolve programming and class structure to constantly chase the unknown and unknowable.

Our goal at Angel Oak CrossFit is to always provide every member with the best experience, which includes the most thoughtful and precise programming to help every individual reach their personal goals. We are constantly researching new ways and techniques to make sure that each class is the best hour of your day. After sitting down and evaluating the last cycle of programming, we concluded that:

  1. Our warm-ups have become mundane, so it’s time to change that. More below…
  2. We value and understand the importance of a cool down, but we also know that needs to be prioritized DURING class hour, and not an added time allotment for you to fit in after. Be ready to mobilize.
  3. Strength doesn’t always have to come first in the workout! There will be days where conditioning and skill work is the priority over strength.
  4. We have had a lot of success with programming “classic CrossFit” couplets and triplets. We feel that everybody at Angel Oak CrossFit has improved drastically in the 10 General Physical Fitness skills from smart movement combinations and varying time domains.

More doesn’t mean more, and doing all the things on any given day without reason or purpose is just doing for the sake of doing.

Remember not to be deterred by programming on paper; workouts that look simple are often crushing combos and those with more movements may also include more programmed rest. BUT, there is a method to our madness and we encourage members to commit to a schedule that week vs picking workouts they “like”. Avoiding certain movements or coming always for the same movements is you creating a routine – the exact thing we seek to avoid.  

There will continue to be days where the workout won’t be flashy or showy, but will be focused on increasing overall fitness and health. CrossFit is, after all, is a Strength and Conditioning program that ANY individual can participate in to increase their health and fitness level.

  1. Monthly Programming Guarantees: TESTS!! You will see a Girl WOD, Hero WOD, and AOCF capacity test each month. Testing and retesting allows us to check on the effectiveness of our programming and alter it as needed within a cycle and from cycle to cycle.

2019 CrossFit Open

Yup! The 2019 CrossFit Open is coming a lot sooner than you think! The Open begins on February 21st! This is a 5 week, world-wide CrossFit competition that held in each year intended for all CrossFitter near and far to join together and challenge themselves with workouts developed by CrossFit HQ! We had so much success last year with individual Open performances, and even more fun with the sense of overall community and support – THAT is the power of a CF Community! THAT is what Angel Oak CF is all about!

Who remembers the first workout? It was a long 20min AMRAP with toes-to-bar, DB clean and jerks, and rowing. Shout-out to Rebecca and Lauren for getting their first toes-to-bar during that workout! That was amazing! What about the deadlift and HSPU workout? Shout-out to Sean and MB for finishing Diane under the time cap! AOCF celebrated SO MANY great achievements during the 2018 Open, and we are going to prepare everybody to have another successful year!

So, what’s our role (James and Megan) in that? Open Prep, of course!! One of the best ways to prepare for the Open, is to practice Open style movements and workouts. (Side Note –  we already do this everyday, because it’s just CrossFit! )

Expect to see past Open WODs in our weekly programming beginning in January, and for them to be sprinkled in for the next 2-3 months to help us prepare.


One of the biggest changes you will see in this next phase of programming will be in the warm-ups. When working out, it’s important to actually get warm! So we’re going to get after it  right away! We have become too routine with how we are warming up each day. When your brain isn’t thinking, and connecting itself to your muscles, it’s hard to actually get warm and prepped for a big workout. The past couple of weeks you have already experienced a shift in the warm-ups. We are going to maximize our time warming

up by building our engines and incorporating skill work. You will get more time and exposure on the bike and rower in a low fatigue setting. Time solely on the machines with another intense movement, can actually progress your aerobic capacity.

Expect skill work in the warm-up. Pull-ups, chest-to-bar pull-ups, HSPUs, and MUs and all scalings are fair game for incorporating into the warm up for additional practice time. Skills take practice, so let’s practice more. Once again, by working at these movements in a low fatigue setting, we can perfect our technique and make some good gains.

Finally, Barbell Prep. Barbell work will have programmed percentages at lower weights and many, many warm up sets to help us get prepped for the lift of the day. TRUST this process and do the warm up weights prescribed. Again, we’ve got the long term vision for you; you just need to show up!


Aka S%#@t Work. The Open will undoubtedly have movements that you don’t want to do. It will have a sprint workout or two that will blow up your legs or shoulders and have your lungs feel like they’re breathing fire! It’s coming, so we’re going to embrace it.

Not into competing or competing in the Open? Well this same S&%$ work aka sprint work aka anaerobic is so important for everyone’s general health. It increases metabolism, burns fat, and improves aerobic capacity, to name a few. You don’t need to be a competitor or compete to include high intensity interval work into your regimen.

At the end of some workouts, we will have short, yet intense, pieces for you to complete; think: bike sprints, burpee box jump over EMOMS, thrusters and pull-ups, etc.

These are not intended to punish you or hurt you! They’re intended to push you and prepare you for the Open, for life, for your sport, or for chasing little ones around! We will make the absolute most of your time and money with each and every class. Get ready for some fitness fun!!

AOCF Tests

This is the biggie we are most excited about! One of CrossFit’s most important traits is that it is measurable. How do we know if we’re getting more fit, stronger, faster, and healthier if we don’t measure? You already know that we (Megan and James) are obsessed with measuring and tracking numbers. It’s one of the biggest principals that we base our programming around. We have formulated and come up with specific tests that will be vital to our community to improve all around. Expect front squat and back squat capacity tests;  and barbell cycling with the clean and jerk and snatch; gymnastics skill development and capacity under

fatigue; and your all around classic CrossFit workout to test your engine and skills together in one.

The bulk of our training will be focused on improving each of your test numbers for a retest in spring. One style of training will continue to include barbell cycling, squatting on a clock, and focused accessory work/bodybuilding (i.e. feet-elevated ring rows, DB press/rows, core work, and supersets).

With the increase in conditioning and intensity, it is always important to make sure we circle around to slowing down and increasing our strength and minimizing imbalances.

On other days the priority will be on conditioning, with the addition of longer AMRAPs, and repeating AMRAPs. These are intended to help build consistency and technique first and foremost, so that we can follow it up with intensity the closer we get to spring.

Finally, post workout mobility. Recovery and nutrition is one of the most important aspects of any fitness routine. Since you hit it hard everyday and give it your all, we are going to make sure we are mobilizing and recovering after each workout so that you can come in the next day and do it all over again!

Once again, our goal at Angel Oak CrossFit is to never become stagnant. We want to consistently increase your member experience, and provide you with the best workouts and coaching possible. We are so fortunate to have a community that wants to get better, and improve their lifestyles by increasing their health and fitness. It’s awesome to see you guys improve, and continue to come in and workout during the busy holiday season!

We are so excited about this next batch of programming! We can’t wait to see your improvements the next few months!


REMEMBER: You’re amazing, you’re getting better every class, so keep rocking it each and every day!

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