BoxLife Magazine

January2014 Featuring Lucas Parker

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finding out what works for my body. VooDoo flossing has helped me a lot with my shoulder and ankle injuries. I'm also into relaxation. I find having an Epsom salt bath after a training session is one of the best things to release the tension from your body, let your mind slow down, relax and make sure that you get a good night's sleep. Let's talk nutrition. We've read about you enjoying Wendy's and gaining some weight before the 2013 Games. What's the story? LP: Yes, I definitely gained some weight before Regionals and held it until the Games, which may not have been a good idea. I noticed a great increase in my strength and power, but being as that was already one of my better areas I may have had a more well-rounded performance if I was 5-10lbs lighter and able to get through the running, rowing and bar weight movements more efficiently. People may think I don't care about what I eat because of other nutritional supplements, but I do care, just in a different way. I focus on getting enough fuel to match my level of physical activity. In the off-season, I do cut out a lot of the bagels and pasta, but if you're training for athletic performance in a high intensity sport, sometimes you need to let yourself slide a bit to get all the energy you need. And that's just my opinion. I may adjust my diet throughout the year and see how it affects me. But when I'm getting ready for a competition I don't want to experiment with different diets, not knowing what effect they'll have on my performance. So you were about 10lbs heavier at the Games? LP: Yeah, I probably weighed about 195lbs. Walking around all year, I usually weigh under 185lbs, between 182-185lbs. Then during the summer, during Games season, I was definitely closer to 195 or 197. I did tack on a couple pounds there—most of it I think was muscle, probably a bit of water weight as well. We know you love sprinting. Do you incorporate sprinting and other explosive movements into your workouts? LP: I do. I think it's really important no matter what your goals are. Sprinting is the purest, most powerful exercise a human can do. You don't need a barbell, or special shoes or a gym. You just need a straight shot on a level plane and you can really get an awesome workout. Though it's very simple, it is somewhat technical, but just watching a few videos or finding a decent and knowledgeable coach can be wondrous for the sprint form. BOXLIFEMAGAZINE.COM When you have good technique, you can really get an awesome workout. You can go all out and make yourself feel like puking in under 15 seconds, which is pretty hard to do in any other training. When people use the word 'sprint' in reference to CrossFit, it's usually thrown in with other movements, so you end up jogging and using the sprint as the rest because the workout as a whole is much longer. A true sprint is to run a short distance—100m, 200m, 400m and go all out. My sprint workouts are at the track or on the field with some cleats. My warm-up is a lot longer than the workout itself, because you need to prepare your muscles, your hamstrings and calves, for the extreme velocity and force of the sprint. There's lots of essential drills like butt kicks and high knees, skipping and bounding. I may start with a few sets of simple acceleration, practicing my start position, and go no more than 4-6, maybe 8 reps, working up to distances of 20, 40, 60, 80 meters, to work on my all out speed form. I rest for about 2-3 minutes, making sure that I'm fresh and ready to attack the next rep. If it's a longer sprint session, I do reps of 200m or 400m, thinking about lengthening my stride, being consistent and tall in my posture and trying to keep a pretty high pace throughout. For those who don't know the story, tell us about your beard. LP: I grew the beard in 2011 in preparation for a competition. I told myself I wasn't going to shave until my season was over, that I was going to use it as a reminder of every rep, every workout I did throughout the year. I didn't really think anything about people's reaction to it at the time. Then, at the 2012 CrossFit Games, I definitely got a favorable reaction from the crowd and some fans. I decided to let it grow out again for 2013, not so much as a DECEMBER/JANUARY2014 41

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