12 Reps – The Breaking Muscle Digest – Vol. 1, Issue 4

Twelve reader favorites from the past week and from the archives, curated to save you time and bring you happiness.

We’re back with twelve more interesting, inspiring, and informative articles and videos chosen with love just for you, our loyal reader.

We went heavy on the mobility and flexibility information this week, plus a fun (but incredibly hard) set of challenges and some CrossFit Games Open pieces for your enjoyment. Plus, Charles Staley is back with more insightful answers to common questions.

Top Video of the Week:

VIDEO: Recover Faster From CrossFit Open WODs – To help all of you participating in the Open this year, Sima put together a yoga class that will help keep your body and mind healthy. Each one of these three stretches opens the hips and the shoulders.

Reader Favorites of the Week:

Smart Strength With Charles Staley – Creaky knees, pain with squats, and Coach Staley weighs in on the lifting straps debate. Don’t miss his instructions on how to do an “Evaluation Inventory” to un-stick your progress – see it in the first few minutes of the video at the very bottom of the article.

6 Tough Challenges to Test Your Strength and Athleticism – I’ll bet some of these are already on your list. How many of these six physical challenges can you complete?

Dishonesty in the CrossFit Open: Who is to Blame? – Was it vague rules, simple strategy, or something darker that led to the now-infamous disqualification of athletes who “sandbagged” the 15.1 and 15.1a Open workout? CrossFit Games athlete Patrick McCarty offers his opinion.

10 Short Daily Drills to Combat Back Pain – Relieve your aching back almost any time or place with these quick and easy drills.

Tips and Tricks for Healthy Shopping on a Budget – While eating healthful food can be expensive, being sick and having no energy is no deal, either. What if you could have the best of both worlds?

20 Fitness Blog Finalists Announced – We have determined, by your nominations and votes, who the twenty best fitness blogs belong to. Now our judges will pick the best ten. Did your favorite make the cut this year?

Train in the Lateral Plane for Maximum Athleticism – If up-down-forward-backward were all the directions, then push-pull-squat-hip hinge might be enough. But truly functional fitness requires a more flexible approach.

Workout Programs:

Energy System Optimization With Joel Jamieson – This four-part video series will help you understand what’s happening at the cellular level in your body at different intensity levels so you can train optimally for every situation.

Strength and Endurance With Kettlebell Complexes – Certified kettlebell coach and yoga instructor Brandon Hofer brings you this twelve-week program. Complete with video demonstrations and a PDF download to make it easy for you to get strong, healthy, and flexible in time for the great weather ahead.

From the Archives:

Two Flexibility Drills – The Key to Progressing Your Pistols – Everybody wants to rep-out the pistols. Nobody wants to do the foundational work. If you’ve tried, but still struggle with the pistol squat, the problem may not be your lack of strength. Start here.

Fix Your Weak Foundation – Your Ankles – Speaking of mobility for pistol squats, does your heel come up when you attempt them? This article will help you identify and repair weaknesses in your ankles that are holding you back from your best performance and health.

We hope you enjoy these selections – see you all next week for another installment.

The Breaking Muscle Team

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