Training Uncategorized

EMOM Mondays

Written by Jack

During the first few minutes I thought to myself, “geez, Monday’s are going to be a breeze!

Hold on though. By 10 minutes into the 27 minute WOD I started to see the truth — great pain in my future…

20 minutes in… I was gasping, cursing, and just praying the damn thing would end…!

The worst part is…

It was all my idea. A couple weeks earlier I’d had a meeting with my coach. And I told him about an idea I had for using EMOMs to take skill work on my weaker movements and combine it with conditioning elements like the Assault Bike, Rower, etc…

Damn! For once he listened. And I had to suffer through my own great idea. 🙂

And that’s how EMOM Mondays were born.

I know I sound like I’m complaining. But the truth is I love them. (or at least I love to hate them… it’s confusingand complicated…)

Bottom line is this though… they are effective as hell…

Here’s how it works.

You take a couple movements that you want to get better at. You want to pick something that you consider a weakness…

Maybe you need to work on your timing, your breathing or just your overall efficiency and execution of the skill.

Then you add in a conditioning movement like the Assault Bike, the Rower or even running. Set the calories or the distance depending on your conditioning level so that it takes you around 20 to 30 seconds to get the work done at a FAST pace.

Here’s why this works so well…

You KNOW you get to rest for part of every minute. So you’re not stressed out when you attack each of the 3 movements. It gives you the confidence to really focus on technique for your skill work, and then go all out on the conditioning element.

Yet at the same time you are also practicing that skill under increasing levels of fatigue throughout the workout…

I guarantee that you’ll start your EMOM thinking it’s too easy… and you’ll finish like a wet fish gasping in on the floor…

And don’t get me wrong… at least one of your skill elements should also be a serious conditioning challenge as well. Over the past few cycles, for me that has been either Wallballs or Thrusters. Both of which I would have considered weaknesses before running them through the Monday EMOM cycles.

Here’s a look at how one of these cycles can progress:

Week 1: 24 Minute EMOM

  • 15 Wallballs (unbroken)
  • 8 Power Clean (115 lbs – Touch ‘n Go)
  • 10 Calorie Row

Week 1: 21 Minute EMOM

  • 16 Wallballs (unbroken)
  • 7 Power Clean (135 lbs – Touch ‘n Go)
  • 11 Calorie Row

Week 1: 18 Minute EMOM

  • 17 Wall Ball (unbroken)
  • 6 Power Clean (155 lbs – Touch ‘n Go)
  • 12 Calorie Row

You can see the duration gets shorter each week. However the volume or load gets more challenging which generally means you also end up with a little bit less rest.

In this cycle the Wallballs and the the barbell cycling were the skill elements I wanted to improve on. And they were punctuated by the row.

Also note that the power cleans take a bit less time and give you a bit more rest. That was intentional. Without that the workout would have become almost impossible in the last couple rounds.

Go ahead and create your own EMOM Monday cycles. You’ll quickly turn weaknesses into movements you almost look forward to seeing on the Whiteboard… 🙂

About the author


My grandfather gave me my start in fitness. He said he just wanted to keep me out of trouble. But he shaped the person and the coach I am today. Sport quickly became the center of my life.

I competed in Laser Class sailing at an international level, as well as skiing, football, hockey and more. My first coaching passion was alpine skiing where I spent 20 years as a coach, instructor and ski school director.

But my greatest passion has always been helping people get fit. I’ve devoted my life to study and intense personal practice. I’m a firm believer in practicing what I preach, and in testing my theories on myself. I’m obsessed with the world of health, fitness and nutrition.

Then a few years back I stumbled — grudgingly — on Crossfit. To be honest I started out as a “hater” who believed the negative hype. But after giving it a try, I became increasingly hooked. I dabbled for a couple years, and then in the Spring of 2016 I really started taking it seriously.

I now consider myself a Crossfit Masters Athlete. I’m immersed in it completely. And I want to share my journey here at Smooth Is Fast.

NCSA-CPT, NCCP 3, CSIA Lvl 4 Course Conductor, CSCF 3,
Biosignature Certified, MAT Lower Body Certified, AKC Certified Coach

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