Dual Strength Bias Programs. Wods for Monday 3-30-15

March 30, 2015

Briefly, first: On Saturday, I spoke at length about my path throughout the next year, with the goal of peaking for and doing well in the 2016 CF Open. We spent a little time, not as much as I had hoped, on preparing for a fitness challenge outside the CrossFit framework. Triathlons, Powerlifting, Single lifts, maybe a goal like 50 consecutive pullups, etc. In all cases it comes down to this: You present me with the WHAT and WHEN of your goal, I will give you input on the HOW. As an example lets take Todd’s goal of improving his triathlon (while still staying active in CrossFit) and lets say it’s 12 weeks away.

We might do the following: We’d determine how many days he can devote to training, and let’s say it’s 5 days a week. We split up the 12 weeks into 3rds.

The first 4 weeks we divide his five days as follows 2 CF workouts, 1 bike ride, 1 swim and 1 CF workout that’s has a high running component.

The middle four weeks we go 2 CF workouts, and 1 workout each devoted to run, bike, swim.

The last 4 weeks we drop to 1 CF workout WITH a running component. We drop all all resistance training on Todd’s legs, and we get an exclusive run, bike and swim. The 5th workout is either all three elements of the tri or perhaps only 2 if logistics or schedule demands this.

And in general, that is somewhat similar to how we’d train for any specific goal. We’d get closer and closer to the exact specs of the competition or fitness test as we get chronologically closer to the date. Your CF (general) work goes down and your specific work frequency (not necessarily volume) goes up.

I’m happy to create a broad roadmap like what’s above for any member at no cost. Beyond that there would be some fees associated, depending on time demand. We’d work that out individually. That said, the truth is you can also find some good online resources for free. Google “5k training program” or “500 lb deadlift” and explore.

As of today, The CF Open is over, and in step with that our training pivots away from the Metabolic focus that the Open demands. For the next 9 weeks we will be biasing our time towards strength development. Under that umbrella we have 2 pathways:

The first is what we call linear progression, and this program is strongly recommended for the following athletes:

1)You’ve never done one of our strength programs before.
2)You have done this before and enjoyed it and got some progress.
3)Your schedule changes from week to week.
3)You still want a decent (3-4 a week) dose of metcons. If you wanted to be a meathead weightlifter you’d join Gold’s Gym for Fu*k’s sake.

This program goes as follows: You’ll perform a different lift every weekday (m-pullup, tu-squat, w-bench press, th-shoulder press, f-deadlift) some measure of accessory work that will vary from week to week, and thereafter a medium length metcon. This is a good measure of consistency, variety and volume that has, in the past, added an average of 15-16% to the strength totals of first timers and 8-10% on subsequent attempts.

A second option we’ll call 4×5 is suggested for anyone who:

1) Has already done our linear progression cycle and would prefer to do something else.
2) Is less concerned with a temporary decline in metabolic capacity.
3) Likes to chest bump, forearm smash, calls your friends “Bro” and spells gainZ with a capitol “Z”.

This program has the athlete lifting Squats and Shoulder Presses and pulling actions (pullups, rows etc) and accessory work on both M and F. Deadlifting at low volume on Wednesday. No weights at all on tuesday and thursday. There will be some very short metcon activity on M and F with longer wods Tu and Th and recovery/ mobility programmed Wednesday.

In both programs, 2 things are vital. First, you must be consistent with your exposures to the lifts. Scattershot attendance really hampers the efficacy of what we’re trying to do, which is progressively overload a movement. Second, you MUST document your lifts. If you can’t spring for a phone app or a notebook, or are somebody who just likes to “play it by ear” or “listen to my body” your time will be poorly spent. You must know where you were last week in order to progress. Guesstimating is a total waste.

In this first week we’ll test and then perform the main lift. in subsequent weeks there is no test and we will run the main lift plus accessory work.

Linear Progression
Test 1 rep max and then perform 4×8 starting at 75% of the 1 rm figure.
So for Monday 3-30 You would first Test your 1 rm in the pullup. Then take 75% of that value and try to get 8 reps unbroken. You would adjust somewhat up or possibly down from that value for the next 3 sets. Work capacity follows and is FREDDY’S REVENGE– 5 rft 5 s20 @ 185/115, 10 Burpees.

Establish 1 RM’s in the Squat, Shoulder Press and Pullup. Perform 4×5 @ 80% for all sets. With any time remaining your work capacity is AMRAP in 8. 8 Wallballs/8 Pullups.



  1. Hate I missed the class, the new programming options look great!!!

  2. Thanks Rick. Given your interest in programming generally I think you’d have been interested, despite, essentially, my talking about myself for 50 minutes.

  3. My choice is the strength program. I felt I made some big gains and would like to move forward

    • Just so no one gets confused, technically BOTH these programs are strength biased. The linear progression has “more CrossFit” every day. The 4×5 is a little more singularly strength focused on M and F. I think you;re referring to the 4×5 which is probably a good fit for you.

    • Sorry for mis speaking. I am doing the strength focus program.
      Previous PR on Pull Up was 311

  4. Linear strength
    pullups (doing overhand this time, definitely weaker than my chin ups)
    3×8 with 2 bands, 1×8 with 3 bands

    Freddy’s revenge – 6:47 at 85#. Did the sets of 5 unbroken, split jerks. Maybe could have gone heavier but it felt heavy!

    • Susan, yes, unbroken through all 5 sets tells me that you should go heavier. These metcons will repeat every month, so you’ll have a chance again soon. Look at 95 or 100lbs.

  5. Pull ups – BW + 20
    26@bw (123) 6@+1
    The strictness of my pull-ups has been questioned but it’s a habit I can’t break and how I’ve always done them. So perhaps an asterisk is needed

  6. I’m going for the 4×5
    1 rep max
    BS 295
    SP 155
    Pullup 279 (bw+103)

    I only had time for 3×5 today
    BS 235, 225, 225
    SP 125, 125, 125
    PU 225, 225, 225

  7. 15.5 failed to improve.
    Strength bias program. Max pull up 307. 207 lbs is all my fat self and the belt.
    4×5 @238

  8. Doing 4×5- did 1rm & didn’t make it to the actual 4×5

    Pullups- 144.4 =BW +15.6…happy with this- my test out last cycle was 141.1

    Back Squat- 150…test out last cycle–>155

    Shoulder press- 68..test out last cycle 73

    • MIchelle, thats pretty good strength retention. Based on that we should see end numbers slightly beyond last time.

  9. I’m doing 4 x 5
    Back squat 245
    Shoulder press 150
    Pull up body weight +120 = 295

  10. 15.5 repeat. 9:58. vs 10:16 on friday. I had hoped for Sub 9:40, so a decent amount off goal. Good Workout.

  11. 4×5
    FS: 205
    SP: 155
    PU: 256

    Only time for 2×5
    FS: 165,165
    SP: 125, 125
    PU: 220, 220

  12. I’m doing 4X5

    I consider myself pretty weak metabolicaly so in effort to not lose what little metabolic conditioning I do have, I will attempt to get in the metcons prescribed for the linear programing in the evenings of our lifting days…except for today. Freddy is a bitch.

    Front Squat 255 1rm
    220X5, 205X5, 205X5

    Shoulder Press 175 1rm

    Pullups 1rm 250 BW 176
    202 (small vest) X 15

    All around my strength is WAAAAY down from previous cycles. I attribute it to time out of the gym and injuries as of late. I think I will get it back soon though…I hope…

    Last strength cycle I ended with 212 SP, 305 FS, Plus 95 Pullup.

  13. Linear:
    Pull-up RM: 2 bands (same as test out last round)
    4×8 black band
    FR: 7:20 @ 65# (pretty sure that was the highest weight ever for S2O)

  14. 15.5 9:48
    Linear progression
    1 rep max pullup BW+43lb (BW 141) so a total of 184lbs
    4×8 at BW

  15. 1 rep max PU = +3 band assistance.
    4×8 at +5, +4, +5 and +5×5 reps and +6 for 3 reps.
    Freddy’s Revenge – 7:27 @ 80lbs, but then I doubted myself on the number of rounds so did an extra one and finished in 10:07. I think I might have rested 1-2 minutes before doing the last round (5 or 6).

    • PS. I did all S2OH unbroken, so maybe could have gone heavier, but I have been a really slacker as far as attendance so didn’t want to kill myself the first day back.

      • I’m so happy you’re back.

  16. BS 225lbs 4x5x175….. PU 160bw plus 70lbs 4×5 plus 25lbs

  17. 4×5 group
    Pull-up 1rep max: bw+12=122(last test out was bw+7.5)
    4×5 pull-ups- 15@bw, 5@+1
    Back squat 1 rep max: 130(110 last time). 4×5 back squats @ 105
    Shoulder press 1 rep max: 62 (60 last time) 4×5 @ 50

  18. Body weight 169

    Back Squat 1RM
    Did not test this last cycle due to back injury

    SP 1RM
    Last cycle maxed at 165 but I also weighted 181 at that time

    PU 1RM
    238 (+69)
    Last cycle maxed at 263 (+82), same body weight as above

    Completed 4×5 of SP on Monday
    110x4x5 = 2200 lbs total

    Will complete BS and PU 4×5 on Tuesday

  19. Pull Ups
    1 RM – 134lbs
    4 x 8 – 10 @ body weight, 1 +1 band, 21 +2 bands

  20. 1 RM SP 80, FS 130, PU 3LR 4 LR 3×5
    Work 65, (104-95 ???)

    • Work was with SP 65, FS 104/95, PU 4LR

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