What’s The Deal With Benchmark Workouts?

  2017-08-15 07:40AM
Angie. Annie. Barbara. Chelsea. Diane. Elizabeth. Fran. In CrossFit speak, these are just a few of the girls. But actually, theyre WODs that are designed to test your progress. Thats why we call them benchmark workouts. And yes, while we toot our own horn that youll never see the same workout twice, benchmark workouts are the exception. If you consistently journal your 1 rep max for any lift youll literally see progress on paper. But what that wont show you is how far youve come all around. CrossFit isnt just about strength training after all. Agility, functional mobility, gymnastics, endurance, and intensity are just as important. The real deal is that the girls generally dont involve complex movements, but they will push you to your limits regardless. Lets look at a few of them: Angie: 100 push-ups, 100 pull-ups, 100 sit ups, and 100 squats - for time This one tests strength as well as speed. Maybe your progression went from push-ups on your knees to push-ups on your feet (or even half and half.) Perhaps the resistance band for your pull-ups is lighter, or better yet, maybe you dont need one at all. Or maybe your progression hasnt changed, but your time has. Any of these things will demonstrate awesome improvement. Diane: 21-15-9; deadlifts and handstand push-ups Diane tests gymnastics skills, strength, and stamina. Progressions can be going from an assisted headstand to a handstand, or a handstand to a handstand push-up. As for your deadlifts, even though you may know your 1 rep max, this time youre doing 45 of them! So were looking for the heaviest you can handle and complete, preferably at a touch-and-go speed. Annie: 50-40-30-20-10; double unders and push ups Mastering a double under is no joke, so its not surprising that those bad boys are the star of this benchmark workout. Even if youve done only 1 double under out of the 150 in Annie, youve killed it. Just mastering the proper wrist flicking is a huge achievement. And if youre not there either, thats okay - just keep coming back. Jumping burpees over the bar can help get you to the double under progression. No matter the benchmark (or any WOD, really) do your best not to focus on your fellow athletes. You are your only competition. And you are the only person you have to beat.    


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