Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Every Minute on the Minute Front Squats

Workout of the Day

WOD 1 – in the morning…

10 sets of 10 kipping handstand pushups

Rest minimum necessary time to complete next set

WOD 2 – in the afternoon…

Every minute on the minute complete 5 Front Squats at 70% 1 RM

Cap WOD at 20 minutes

3 rounds of 10 back extensions & 20 hollow rocks

WOD 3 – in the evening…

4 rounds for time:

400 meter run

500 meter row

Attacking a full day of training just 2 days after the Squaw Valley Tough Mudder definitely posed a challenge. Halfway through the day I could feel myself drained of energy and not really wanting to finish what I had planned. Thankfully the promise of a full days rest to follow was enough to convince me the plan was worth carrying out.

My last training block featured back squats every minute on the minute for 5’s, 3’s, and 1’s @ 70%, 80%, and 90% 1 RM, respectively. Originally I had planned on following that with a similar protocol for deadlifts, but thought better of it instead. The grueling nature of this sequence induces failure during the lift at some point, and with squatting this means a missed lift and an end to the WOD. With deadlifting, however, failure doesn’t necessarily induce a missed lift. Rather, it usually is a gradual deterioration of technique and stability that most can push through to complete the movement but ruin their back in the process. For this reason, I decided that while the results for squats have been remarkable (completed 20 single repetitions @ 385# without problems during the last week), the results for deadlifting would likely do more harm than good. Therefore I chose to try it with front squats instead and attack deads in a different way later on.

Today’s round of 5’s went decent but terrible. What I mean by that is I managed a decent final showing, but it felt like hell doing it. At 245# I was able to complete 10 full rounds—I was not able to walk very well afterwards, however. My training partner Travis enjoyed a similar experience. Hopefully the gains going forward will be similar to those seen on back squats last time around.

Following that up with the run/row conditioning WOD was meant to flush the bad blood out of my legs, but it really just made them hurt again. By the 3rd round it felt like my quads were going to cramp on the row, forcing me to alter my technique and purposely pull early with my arms. Interesting idea born on necessity since I was able to give my legs a little break and still maintain my pace.

Got a couple big days planned coming up and some great outdoor WODs to try. Looking forward to that and some ibuprofen.


  1. What are "hollow rocks?"

  2. http://gymnasticswod.com/content/hollow-rock

  3. Blair, How often do you front squat a week? One 5's day, one 3's day and one 1's day?

  4. @ matt, once per week. 5's week 1, 3's week 2, 1's week 3

  5. Thanks. Keep pushing the envelope!