Advice on Approaching the CrossFit Total

Next week we will be doing CFABQ Total week, which starts off with the classic CrossFit Total. The CrossFit Total consists of 3 lifts: the back squat, press, and deadlift. You will get 3 attempts at each to lift the maximum weight possible, and your heaviest successful lift from each of the 3 will be added together for your total. So here is the tricky part. You can warm up however you like, but once you declare your first back squat attempt you are committed to progressing through all 3 lifts; you don’t get anymore warm up lifts. You will make your 3 back squat attempts then move straight into the press, then the deadlift.

I will give you a little advice on how I would go about warming up for the Total and you can take it for what it’s worth. One mistake I have seen in the past is an athlete will warm up with weights nowhere near their max and then jump right into their declared attempts. If you are planning on hitting a PR back squat of 405lbs and only warmed up with 95lbs x5, odds are you are not going to hit your goal. On the flip side, you also don’t want to do so many warm up sets that you are smoked when you start the Total.

So, here is my advice. Start with the back squat and do 1×5 @~40%, 1×3 @~60%, 1×1 @~75%, 1×1 @~80%, and 1×1 @~90%. Take a short breather and then move onto the press. You should be fairly warm from the squats and the press weights will be significantly lighter, so you might choose fewer sets; say 1×5 @~40%, 1×2 @~70%, 1×1 @~80%, and 1×1 @~90%. The same goes for the deadlift.

Once you begin I would recommend your first attempt be a weight you know you can hit for a triple. Then your second weight should be something you know without a doubt you can hit for a single. If all is well, go for that new PR on the third attempt. Focus, visualize, deep breath, hold, and crush your previous PR!

If you have done the Total before and have a warm up routine that works for you, then by all means, stick with it. If not, maybe give this a try. Be safe, go big, and start the week off right.

24 Responses

  1. Jose Calderon III says:

    I was wondering how to tackle this…great advice, Mr. Booth.

  2. Jim C says:

    my goal is to tie whitney

  3. […] The Words of Wisdom are from the CrossFit Albuquerque blog: Advice on Approaching the CrossFit Total. […]

  4. matt says:

    Thanks Deka CrossFit!

  5. […] Warm up accordingly.   You have three attempts at the following three lifts (in this order): […]

  6. […] changes, effective Tuesday, September 3rd Advice on approaching the CrossFit Total (which is also today’s WOD) Oldest man in the world lives to 123 on diet of lizards & […]

  7. […] ‘Advice on Approaching the CrossFit Total’, by CrossFit Albuquerque.  Some suggestions on warmup loads for today’s WOD.  […]

  8. […] in regards to aproaching this work out, i found this cool little article: http://www.crossfitalbuquerque.com/thoughtsrants/advice-on-approaching-the-crossfit-total/ […]

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