Iceland Sectional

Athlete Profile: Elvar Karlsson - European Regional

Representing Iceland with a first place at Sectionals.

Elvar Karlsson is heading to the European Regional by way of a 1st place finish at the Iceland Sectional which took place March 27-28th.

Name: Elvar Karlsson
Height: 6' 3"
Weight: 185lbs
Affiliate: Trains Independently, BootCamp Iceland
Regional: Europe

What is your athletic background?
I started training at BootCamp at 15 (currently 19) in absolutely no athletic shape, couldn’t even finish a 2k run, and my max push-ups were 17. At BootCamp we train  mostly with bodyweights, but I have added weight training to my programming for about 2 years.

What is your history with CrossFit?
I’ve been familiar with CrossFit for two years, but didn’t really apply it that much to my training until I took a Level 1 Certification in September ’09.

What is unique and/or interesting about you as an individual or athlete?
Compared to other CrossFitters it is pretty unique that I have run 100k races, marathons, and other ultra-distances all while maintaining a deadlift of 475lbs.

At the first 100k race in Iceland I finished in just under 12 hours, which is mediocre time compared to everyone else. I have also run three times in the famous Icelandic off-road ultra marathon, Laugavegurinn, last year I finished 46th place out of 313 finishers. My best marathon time is 3:40, ran my first marathon at 15 (4:01) 8 months after I started training at BootCamp. I guess the reason why I can maintain my running capabilities while doing strength stuff is that most of my run training is short hill runs (less than an hour) and shorter sprints in metcons. I never go out for a 2-3hour run (I did it 3 times while training for my 100k)

Video 1 (YouTube): 100k Race in Iceland

Video 2 (YouTube): Laugavegurinn Ultra Marathon



Rogue Fitness Again Faster Equipment CrossFit Journal

Proudly supporting the 2010 CrossFit Games

Photo Gallery

Follow crossfitgames on Twitter

Follow the CrossFit Games on Twitter

The CrossFit/USA Weightlifting Open

The CrossFit/USA Weightlifting Open

7 comments on this entry

1. Kim wrote...

It is interesting that Elvar believes strength training would be counter-productive to his running abilities. We have an awesome program at our box at RAW Training that trains marathoners with only Crossfit workouts and short runs, hill training included. Strength training is HUGE in the program, and no one shys away from the deadlift! Last year's training group had incredible times and PR's. We have a big group competing at the Boston Marathon this weekend and we are ready for some incredible times - check out our RAW website for the results after Sunday, April 18th!

2. cam birtwell wrote...

Hi Kim,

I don't think he was saying that strength training is counterproductive - he was just making the point that it is very difficult to maintain such a high level of strength when also working towards high performance in such an extended time domain...

Fortunately, shorter duration run workouts don't affect max strength as much as the 2-3 hour runs Elvar says he avoids.

3. Elvar Þór Karlsson wrote...

Cam has it right,

but Kim yes, I believe that if I would specialize in 100km runs, it would not be ideal to do much strength training, and vice versa.

But that's what its all about, specialize by not specializing, right?

The info was kind of taken out of context. I wouldn't consider myself a ultra distance runner, I've only experimented with it, with decent results.

Kim, what is the link for the RAW website?

4. grambo wrote...

It depends what your goals are, if you want to be a champion/world class distance running (5km and anything longer) you do not want to do a ton of strength work. The proof is in the pudding, look at the people with the medals/records and how they train.

Specializing by not specializing is fine if your goal is GPP, if you want to win in a specific sport then specialization is necessary and there is nothing wrong with that fact, it just depends on your goals.

5. Kim wrote...

Here is the link to the RAW website:
I believe Crossfit HQ may be doing a small story following our Crossfit athletes throught the Boston Marathon, so stay posted!
Yes, Elvar, Grambo and Cam, you are right, the people with the medals/records have specialized in their sport and that has been the way it usually has been. But I am believing implementing Crossfit training into their training is going to make these athletes stronger and faster. And I believe there is going to be a different trend as to how professinal runners train. Check out Meb Keflezighi and how he trained for a phenomenal comeback in the New York City Marathon.
I do agree, it is about speializing by not specializing. I've drunk the "koolaid" and I'm so fanatical about Crossfit and how it carries over and increases our abilities in other sports and life!

6. James William Goulden wrote...

This guy is strong.
Believe me there will be 2 male competitors from Iceland in Aromas this year, he and Sveinbjörn.

Gangi þér vel Elvar!

7. Sarah Elisabeth Lindasdatter Troelsen Krarup wrote...

Good luck at the European Regionals to all.

We're bringing some athlete profiles of the athletes participating in the European Regionals on outr blog: http://fitasfu*

the * indicates a c i the ww-address :-)

We would love more athletes to answer the same questions.

Looking forward to seeing you all.

Ditte & Sarah, Denmark


The 2010 CrossFit Games Official Sponsors

For more information on how to sponsor the CrossFit Games, see the sponsorship page.

  • Under Armour
  • Rogue Fitness
  • Again Faster Equipment
  • MiR Pro Weighted Vest
  • Concept 2
  • Vibram Five Fingers
  • OMG*Omega3
  • Stud Bar
  • Regupol America
  • Mindbody Online
  • Forged Clothing
  • GarageGym
  • Gymboss Interval Timer
  • Inov-8
  • At Large Nutrition
  • LifeAsRx
  • LifeAsRx
  • Undefeated Sports Nutrition
  • Rage Fitness Supply: Leader in Functional Fitness Equipment
  • Stronger Faster Healthier
  • Watermans Applied Science
  • Rocktape
  • DeFeet
  • AquaHydrate