A CrossFit Coach Crafted This "Power Hour" Workout to Keep Your Muscles Guessing
Monday through Friday, 5:45 a.m. to 6:45 a.m. used to be my time at the gym. I miss my hour-long workouts! Lately during the week, between balancing working from home and homeschooling my two kids, I'm lucky if I can carve out a 30-minute workout here and there. So when my CrossFit coach announced he was offering a Zoom "Power Hour" last Saturday, I almost slept with my dumbbells, I was so excited!
Jade Jenny, head CrossFit coach and owner of Champlain Valley CrossFit, called this "a true hopper-style workout," meaning you don't know what's coming next. Hopper workouts involve a random mix of exercises in a random order, which keeps your mind and your muscles guessing, and because of that, it makes the workout both challenging and exciting.
For this 60-minute EMOM workout (every minute on the minute), Jenny chose eight basic CrossFit exercises that were either bodyweight (hello burpees and v-ups!) or dumbbell moves (squats and lunges). He wrote down numbers one through eight on pieces of paper, put them in a hat, and picked them out so he knew the random order of the workout before it started — but we didn't! He'd call out the exercise right before the minute started, so we'd quick have to get into position.
In order to not let things get too crazy with movement rotations, Jenny did 30 randomized draws, so we did each movement twice. And yes, sometimes the same exercise came up in a row, which meant four minutes of burpees or four minutes of v-ups!
This was the first time I'd done a hopper-style workout and loved the physical and mental challenge. It had been weeks since I'd worked out that long and I was breathing hard and was dripping with sweat by the end. I'm not going to lie — halfway through, I wanted to throw in the dumbbells and call it a day, but seeing over 50 of the other gym members pushing through on my screen motivated me to keep going.
I wrote down the order of this 60-minute workout so you can follow along at home. You'll know what's coming next, but the order is so random, that your body and brain will still benefit from the variety of movements.
"Power Hour" CrossFit EMOM Workout
Equipment needed: One pair of dumbbells (I used 15-pound dumbbells), and a jump rope if you have it (just pretend to jump rope if you don't have one).
Directions: Before the workout, complete a five-minute dynamic warmup. This is a 60-minute workout, but do whatever you have time for, whether it's 20, 30, or 40 minutes. There will be eight different exercises in this workout, completed in the specific (yet random) order listed in the chart below. Repeat each movement twice (so for two minutes) before moving on to the next exercise. For each exercise (not including the jump rope or air squats), choose a rep scheme that takes just under 45 seconds to complete, so you have a 15-second rest after each movement. Rep suggestions are listed below; beginners can do fewer reps and more advanced athletes can go for higher reps.
After the workout, make time for this 10-minute stretching routine. Read on for a rundown of the exercises you'll be doing and directions on how to do each exercise.
- Exercise 1: Dumbbell squat: 10 to 15 reps
- Exercise 2: Dumbbell shoulder press: five to 10 reps
- Exercise 3: Single-arm dumbbell overhead reverse lunge: 10 to 16 reps (five to eight reps per side)
- Exercise 4: Burpee dumbbell squat press: four to eight reps
- Exercise 5: Burpee: eight to 12 reps
- Exercise 6: Jump rope: 30 seconds
- Exercise 7: V-up: 10 to 20 reps
- Exercise 8: Air squat: 40 seconds
Minutes 21 to 30
To be clear on how this workout is carried out, for minutes one and two, I did 14 single-arm dumbbell overhead reverse lunges. During the third and fourth minutes, I did 10 shoulder presses, and during the fifth and sixth minutes, I did five burpee dumbbell squat presses.