>After multiple discussions with Coach Pendlay about what he thinks is the biggest weakness with CrossFitters, and novice lifters in general, I have decided to focus the first 16 weeks of our off-season template on the single most important movement in all of strength training…the Squat. We will start with the 4 week Junior version of the world’s most feared Squat program, Smolov. Then, after a week to de-load and re-test, we’ll move on to an old Outlaw favorite, the Hatch Program.
While discussing this topic with Coach, and Travis Cooper (currently the number one ranked lifter in America), and seeing Travis both Squat 245kg (539#) for five reps last week, and PR his total at 350kg on Friday, I am convinced that adding strength to the Squat is the best way to add to all lifting numbers. This is especially true when considering most of our athletes have lifting numbers that are completely out of proportion when compared to their relatively low Squat numbers. The fact that we have almost no 450/275# plus squatters (in fact, we don’t have many above 400/250#—especially with the high bar), but have multiple athletes with 330/220# plus Clean & Jerks, is something that Travis called “really weird”. Even Spencer “The Machinist” Arnold, at a rail thin 155# BW, has pushed his Squat to almost three times bodyweight, and his lifts have risen almost every time his Squat has.
Our sport is one that rewards gains in overall strength with gains in overall capacity. The Squat is the most basic and useful tool for strength development. If you disagree with this notion, or think that there is a “too strong”, first watch this—which was a full year ago, then click here and see what kind of capacity squatting strength can give you.
There will be some tweaks to the template to fit the overall volume of the programs, but the majority of the daily work will remain the same. For the Smolov Jr. portion of the cycle (the first three weeks), our Weightlifting (BBG) volume will be paired back slightly. For the entire cycle (16 weeks), our conditioning pieces will show the most overall change, as they will focus more on gymnastics, calisthenics, and general aerobic capacity work.
Side note: No, you should not try to eat 14,000 calories a day, and “get big” before the next competition season. Let your body tell you when to add more fuel, if you need to at all.
>This weekend I had the pleasure of taking some of the kids from Team Outlaw down south to train with Team MDUSA. While we were there we had the opportunity to bring everyone in and record an episode for Coach’s podcast. It’s long, but gives you guys the opportunity to get to know the Team a little better, and get a lot of insight into our prep for the Games.
7X1 Snatch + 3 Snatch Grip Push Press – heaviest possible, rest 60-90 seconds
Smolov 1/1 – Click Here for Smolov Calculator
HBBS 6X6 @ 70% – rest at least 2 minutes
15 rounds for total calories of:
30 seconds ME Airdyne or Row for Calories
90 seconds Active Recovery (AD or Row) @ 55-65% RPE
*Notes: Airdyne is the preference. During each 90 second recovery interval try to record the exact same caloric total, but make sure you allow for a true max effort interval after. Yes, this is a 30 minute piece.