This Three-Move HYROX Session Builds Endurance With Just Your Bodyweight
HYROX master trainer Jade Skillen has crafted a workout to improve your ability to run when fatigued – no equipment needed
CrossFit has been hosting competitive fitness events like the CrossFit Open for more than a decade, but you’ll need to know your way around some technical barbell exercises to take part. Fitness race HYROX has burst on the scene with a more accessible format, letting people compete against each other at large-scale indoor events across Europe and North America.
The sport alternates between 1km runs with functional movements – eight in total – including sled pushes, sandbag lunges and a stint on a rowing machine. By the end you’ll have run 8km, completed 80 metres of burpee broad jumps and worked through 100 wall balls, among other challenges. It sounds tough – and it is – but it’s a challenge that people of all fitness levels have conquered.
“One of the best things about it is that it’s accessible to everyone,” says HYROX (opens in new tab) UK master trainer Jade Skillen. “I’ve had athletes complete a HYROX event in times ranging from 60 to 180 minutes, and those have ranged from elite athletes to 60-year-olds doing their very first bit of fitness.”
Coach has plenty of HYROX-focused advice including how to train for HYROX, a sample HYROX workout, and how a HYROX gym can help you prepare, but there’s another essential element to take into account.
“You’re going to accumulate leg fatigue as you go into the runs,” says Skillen. “This is called ‘compromised running’ and it’s the big differentiator in a HYROX event. Running feels different after pushing the sleds. Getting used to fatigue in the legs when running is super important.”
If you want to improve your compromised running but don’t have a sled in the shed, you’re in luck. Skillen has programmed a bodyweight workout that lets you develop this very quality. “This is a great little benchmark workout,” says Skillen. “Try it out and see how far you can get, then next time you come to it try and beat your score, even if just by one.”
Bodyweight AMRAP Leg Workout
You are aiming to complete as many rounds of the three exercises below as you can in 20 minutes. Add two more reps to the leg exercises every round.
“We are using two of the core HYROX movements combined with some running in this workout,” says Skillen. “You are going to steadily accumulate more and more reps before you reach the run, replicating the feeling of a HYROX event.”
Skillen has provided form guides to help you perform the movements correctly in the workout and in competition – the last thing you want is to fall foul of HYROX’s movement standards and incur a penalty.
1 Walking lunge
Reps 2, 4, 6, 8, 10… each side
Step forwards with one leg. You must keep the heel of the forward foot on the floor throughout the rep. Bend your knees to lower until your back knee touches the floor, keeping the shin of your forward leg vertical. Push through your forward heel to rise and bring your rear foot forwards to stand with your feet hip-width apart. The rep is complete when your hips and knees are at full extension, meaning you can draw a straight line between your ankles, knees, hips and shoulders. Alternate legs with each rep.
2 Burpee broad jump
Reps 2, 4, 6, 8, 10…
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Lower and place your hands just outside of your feet. Kick or step your feet back so you are in a plank position. Lower your body to the floor so your chest and hips are touching the ground. Press through your hands to push yourself back to a plank position. Jump or step your feet forwards to they’re level with your hands again and return to a standing position. Take a two-footed jump forwards as far as possible.
“The HYROX burpee standard is very specific,” says Skillen. “You can’t put your hands in front of your feet to gain distance, so it’s worth practising this standard in your training.”
Run with your chest up and try to land on your midfoot – if your heel is the first thing hitting the floor, you are putting the brakes on. Find a controlled pace to run at. As the reps build the runs will start to become a recovery element of this workout. Finding a running pace that allows you to move well while recovering slightly will serve you well during a HYROX event.
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Harry covers news, reviews and features for Coach, Fit&Well (opens in new tab) and Live Science (opens in new tab). With over a decade of training experience, he has tried everything from powerlifting to gymnastics, cardio to CrossFit, all in a bid to find fun ways of building a healthy, functional body.