If you’re reading this chances are that, you’re a crossfitter who wants to get stronger. This is a detailed plan to do just that. As part of the previous article you will have a total of 9 weeks of daily workouts, with one bonus week, all designed to improve your maximal strength. Keep reading if you want to see the complete plan.
I highly recommend that you check out the first installment of this 9 week plan, otherwise the second half won’t make any sense, and I doubt you’d see much of a strength gain. I also feel like if I suffered through those heavy ass workouts, then you should as well.
I also recommend that folks trying this plan be at the intermediate level in terms of crossfit experience. If you’re not there yet, no big deal, you be able to see great gains with a simpler program, and then you can try this one when appropriate. Check out this graphic for the intermediate stats.
You don’t have to be there on every single one; however, should be pretty close in terms of the strength standards. If you want to see all the crossfit standards, click here.
Having gone through the first part of this plan, I can say that it’s been working great, especially for my upper body strength. However, because of the heavy deadlifts for high reps, I recommend you use some straps so your grip does not limit your workout.
I’ve had great luck with a pair of these Harbinger Lifting straps (Amazon Affiliate Link). I’ve owned my pair for about 17 years, and they’ve held up extremely well. I only use these for the very heaviest sets, above 80% 1RM. Don’t let them become a crutch, that you always need.
If you like awesome crossfit programming, that’s totally free, put your email in on the right and join the team. If you don’t, Rich Froning will take your gainz.
Now let’s get to part 2!
This is our first week back, fresh from a deload. Thing should be feeling pretty good and you should have noticed a marked increase in strength. I started to notice a big jump on week 3, especially with my bench press.
You can see that the Stronglifts plan has us on 3×3 for our core lifts, and we have dropped the mid week squats, and replaced them with weighted pull ups. We have also removed Thursday’s WOD to help promote greater recovery.
This week is heavy, but the relative increase in weight for your core lifts is fairly small. The strength portion of your workout should probably take you around 45 minutes or so. I’ve also found that if you have access to multiple bars, you can start warming up your next lift, as you finish your previous lift. This can save a lot of time.
You’ll notice that our snatches are now full snatches. Ideally you should try to add at least 5 lbs per week onto your triple weight. If you have to skip adding a weight for a week, that’s no big deal. I just don’t want you to fail to challenge yourself.
This is the week where you will probably have maxed out your adaptation for strength. You’ll find that you will be able to move your weights pretty well, but I would expect that you won’t feel great doing it. That is ok.
Any time you put enough stress on your body to force adaptation, it will fight back by telling you that what your doing is too much. That’s why there is only one more week before you recover.
By now you’ve probably noticed that our cardio has switched. If you haven’t you might be a window licker, just saying. This particular interval cycle is designed to help your body clear metabolic waste more quickly from your muscle cells. Eventually this will allow you to rest for shorter periods, while completing your WODs.
This is the last, and heaviest week. You won’t feel good during these lifts, but you will be able to do them! Don’t be afraid to take 3-5 minutes between your sets, in order to complete them.
These WODs are designed to have very little interference with your strength work, and as such you won’t find them super challenging. The goal here is to just do enough conditioning to maintain what you already have, not build additional capacity. That’s the next cycle !
Ten weeks in a 9 week program, say what? I know I shouldn’t have, but I wouldn’t feel right if I didn’t give you a good plan to deload into your new 1 rep max attempts.
This week uses the same lifting weights as week 5, but the WODs are slightly different. Here we are trying to allow our body to adapt to the high levels of stress we have put on it. We don’t want to stop lifting all together, just reduce the intensity a bit.
After your deload, give yourself 2-3 days of no lifting, or wods, and then attempt your new maxes. You don’t have to do all of them in one day. You could do a squat and press day, then a deadlift and bench day if you wanted.
If you follow the plan, and pay attention to proper nutrition and recovery, Stronglifts projects that you should see 10-15 lbs improvements in your upper body lifts, and around 20 lbs for your lower body centric lifts.
The Next Cycle
This cycle was devoted to gaining maximal strength. Our next cycle will look to improve our WOD specific strength. Last time I checked, we haven’t had any 1 rep maxes with unlimited rest come up in the open yet. So you can expect to see the next cycle out shortly. I promise it will rough, but thats just the way your mother likes it Trebek!