Accommodation: Pruney Fingers + Strong Legs

The human body is amazing. It’s so amazing, in fact, that every time it meets an environment, it learns. When you put your hand underwater long enough, for example, your fingers get pruny. They get pruney, not because your skin is “water logged”, but because your body is accomodating the stimulus of the water. Those pruney fingers give you better grip underwater.

Your body accommodates all kinds of other environments, too. When you make it hot, it sweats. When you try to kill yourself with five sets of five back squats at three hundred pounds, it reinforces its systems so the next time you enter the environment it’s less deathly for your body. Soon, five sets of five at three hundred pounds will be your new normal. Soon, you’ll need to change the load or do more reps or more sets or a different movement to avoid accommodation. Fingers get pruny and legs get stronger.

This beautiful attribute you and I share has lots of obvious pros, but there are things we ought to be concerned about, as well. Any idiot in the gym will suggest the old maxim that you’ve “gotta keep your body guessing”. This comes from the concern we ought to have about accommodation.

Tell me your fitness routine and I’ll tell you where you’re accommodating your training. The goal in training, after all, is to make progress rather than simply get used to your routine. Here’s where intelligent variance is required to make progress. Any program that doesn’t address accommodation guarantees that you won’t make progress once you accommodate the environment you’re in. At some point, F45 needs to become F55 and your Sunday 5K needs to become a Sunday 6K or five different, faster 1Ks with suitable rest.

Let us all be grateful for this intelligent feature we call accommodation, but let’s be smart enough to not let it be our master. If you beat accommodation, you win.

Logan Gelbrich


5/17/18 WOD

Minute 1: 12 Sledgehammer Strikes
Minute 2: 1 Rope Climb
Minute 3: 8 Burpees

Then, every :90 for 8 rounds complete the following for time:
25 Double Unders
1 Back Squat (>80%)