Power, Speed, Endurance Book Review

I’ve only been participating in CrossFit for about a month, give or take, but two things have become crystal clear: 1. You absolutely, positively, need guidance (a good coach), and 2. Mobility is critical in completing the exercises correctly and for full benefit. I get some of that at the Box, but could definitely use more of it at home. As a runner primarily, I naturally wonder how CrossFit is either benefiting or substituting for practice in my chosen sport. For others, there are no Boxes nearby and as for mobility, most have no idea what that entails. Enter Brian Mackenzie’s (with Glen Cordoza) book Power, Speed, Endurance (Las Vegas, NV: Victory Belt Publishing, 2012), which describes how CrossFit Endurance can benefit you as an endurance athlete and not just your core fitness.

Power Speed Endurance book cover

“[CrossFit] is defined as ‘constantly varied functional movement executed at high intensity,’ and the goal is to improve fitness by ‘increasing work capacity across broad time and modal domains.” CrossFit Endurance (CFE) takes this further:
“[F]unctional movement is replaced with sport-specific activity.
CFE is defined as: Constantly varied sport-specific movement executed at high intensity.
CFE is a delicate balance between CrossFit and running, cycling, and swimming (or whatever endurance sport you are focusing on).”
This book is like having multiple coaches at home, with step by step pictured instruction, key for moves that you may not have access to – nothing wrong with all the videos on YouTube and so on, but there is still something to seeing a movement broken down on the printed page that can’t be duplicated. The guest coaches are obviously high quality and are sure to help you with your bike, swim, and run.
I’m not a fan of people changing their running gait – my thought is that too many people have injured themselves trying to do so. I’m more of the school that putting the time in will result in more efficient form, like depositing money in the bank. That being said, if you do want to change your running style, this tome’s explanation of Romanov’s Pose Method is succinct and clear, appearing easy to follow.
One thing I know I need help with is mobility – I’ve checked out Kelly Starrett’s MobilityWOD website, but there’s just too much information there. His chapter in this book is a superior introduction to both mobility in general and in specifics. The website will be a great resource once I have some basics down.
“Performance…can be brought to an abrupt halt by dysfunctional movement patters and underlying restrictions in mobility.” Kelly Starrett is the author of MobilityWOD, and the innovator of the Movement and Mobility Method, which resolves pain, prevents injuries, and optimizes athletic performance. “Mobilization, on the other hand, is a movement-based integrated full-body approach that addresses all the elements that limit movement and performance including short and tight muscles, soft tissue restriction, joint capsule restriction, motor control problems, joint range of motion dysfunction, and neural dynamic issues. In short, mobilization is a tool to globally address movement and performance problems.”
The book concludes with an Appendix of CrossFit Endurance programming, with sport-specific plans, as well as a CrossFit template to create WODs at home.
If you don’t live near a box or can’t afford one, if you’re a sport-specific athlete unsure how CrossFit could fit into your training, or if you just need some extra help at home, this book is a must-buy. From the amazing illustrated training for a variety of skills to the clear explanation of myriad scientific processes, this book is literally like hiring several coaches to help you improve not only your fitness, but your specific sport as well.
Disclaimer: This book was provided to me free of charge, for review purposes, courtesy of CrossFit Endurance. No other compensation was received; a positive review was not requested nor guaranteed.
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3 thoughts on “Power, Speed, Endurance Book Review

  1. I've always been short muscled and stiff. Trail running has helped a bit with this as I do more core and upper body exercises for that. CrossFit seems excellent and I think it will be great for trail runners.

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