CrossFit® Benchmark Workouts, “The Girls”, The Best Times For Every Ability

With every sport, having a "benchmark" is important to track your progress, however, when you have a sport like CrossFit® where everything is constantly varied, it becomes a little hard to have "a standard".

That's where the benchmark come in pretty handy.

They help you track your progress, create a bit of friendly competition with other CrossFitters, and bring the community together.

What's interesting is that each benchmark workout tests a specific aspect of your fitness, like strength, endurance, speed, or skills.

But, how do you know what's a good time to aim for?
Keep reading to discover your current fitness level.

CrossFit Benchmark Workouts The Girls The Best Times For Every Ability

So, we ask you - when was the last occasion you challenged yourself against one of “The Girls” benchmark workouts?

These workouts, with their unique names, have an interesting backstory. CrossFit® Founder, Greg Glassman, drew inspiration from the way the National Weather Service names storms after women, and he thought it was fitting because these workouts hit you like a storm.

These "Girls" represent a group of workouts named after pioneering women in the world of CrossFit®.

The original CrossFit® Girls, introduced in September 2003, were Angie, Barbara, Chelsea, Diane, Elizabeth, and Fran, with Helen and Grace joining a few months later.

In each workout, we’ll give you progression tips for beginners looking to transition from scaled to RX benchmark versions.

Now, let's delve into some of the most common Girl CrossFit® Benchmark Grace:

Annie

Annie is a super fun couplet workout that involves 50-40-30-20-10 Reps For Time of double under and sit-ups.

This WOD is meant to be relatively short—most athletes should finish “Annie” in 10 minutes or less. The repetitions should be fast and mostly unbroken.

Good Times for “Annie”

– Beginner: 10-12 minutes

– Intermediate: 8-10 minutes

– Advanced: 7-8 minutes

– Elite: <6 minutes

Annie Workout - Scaled Option

For time: 

  • 50-40-30-20-10 Single Unders
  • 25-20-15-10-5 Sit-Ups

Progression Tip:

Let’s take a look at a few important keys for mastering double unders: 

  • Correct jump height. 
  • Spinning the rope in a controlled manner. 
  • Keeping your arms down by your side. 

Yet the key is being able to do all three at once, correctly.

Looking for the full progression guide to Double Unders? Click the link here to read our article on how you get double unders - quickly!

Angie

Angie is a challenging workout that consists of 100 Pull-ups, 100 Push-ups, 100 Sit-ups, and 100 Squats, to be completed in that order. Your score is the time it takes to finish all 400 reps. Depending on your skill level, finishing times vary.

Good Times for “Angie”

– Beginner: 26-35 minutes
– Intermediate: 21-25 minutes
– Advanced: 15-20 minutes
– Elite: <14 minutes

Angie Workout - Scaled Option

(For Time)

  • 50 Pull-Ups
  • 50 Push-Ups
  • 50 Sit-Ups
  • 50 Air Squats

Progression Tip:
Begin with knee push-ups, assisted pull-ups, and air squats.

Over time, work on building strength and technique to progress to standard push-ups, pull-ups, and squats for the RX version.

For more progressions and scaled options for pull ups, push ups, and air squats; click the link to read more.

Barbara

Barbara involves 5 rounds for time, with 3 minutes of rest between rounds. Each round comprises 20 Pull-ups, 30 Push-ups, 40 Sit-ups, and 50 Squats. Your score is the total time, excluding the rest periods, to complete all five rounds.

Like Angie, completion times differ based on your fitness level. We wouldn’t recommend this workout for a beginner and instead opt for a scaled version.

Good Times for “Barbara”

– Intermediate: 40-49 minutes

– Advanced: 30-39 minutes

– Elite: <29 minutes

Barbara Workout - Scaled Option

For Time:

  • 4 rounds with 3 minutes of rest between rounds
  • Each round:
    • 10 Pull-Ups
    • 15 Push-Ups
    • 20 Sit-Ups
    • 25 Air Squats

Progression Tip:
Begin with fewer rounds and longer rest intervals. Gradually reduce rest times and increase the number of rounds as your endurance and strength improve. 

The nail this workout, you need to have butterfly pull ups down. This is a more advance benchmark workout, and a great one to work up towards. Here's how you can improve your butterfly pull ups.

Cindy

On a 20-minute clock, perform as many rounds and reps as possible (AMRAP) of the work in the order written. 1 round is equal to 5 Pull-Ups, 10 Push-Ups, and 15 Air Squats.

What is a good score for the “Cindy” workout?

– Beginner: 11-12 rounds

– Intermediate: 13-17 rounds

– Advanced: 19-22 rounds

– Elite: 24+ rounds

Cindy Workout - Scaled Option

(AMRAP in 20 Minutes)

  • 3 Pull-Ups
  • 6 Push-Ups
  • 9 Air Squats

Progression Tip:
Start with band-assisted pull-ups, modified push-ups, and shallow squats.

As you become more proficient, decrease the assistance and increase the depth of your squats. Eventually, aim for strict pull-ups and standard push-ups.

First time giving Cindy a go? If that sounds like you, then pull ups will be a limiting factor in this workout. Here are some more scaling options.

Chelsea

Chelsea is an "Every Minute on the Minute" (EMOM) workout that spans 30 minutes. You perform 5 Pull-Ups, 10 Push-Ups, and 15 Air Squats every minute. Your score is the number of rounds you successfully complete in 30 minutes.

Good Scores for “Chelsea”

“Chelsea” is an EMOM type of WOD, which means the goal is to just finish the prescribed work in under a minute for 30 minutes straight.

Intermediate athletes should be able to finish all 30 rounds as prescribed. We wouldn’t recommend this workout for a beginner and instead opt for a scaled version.

Chelsea Workout - Scaled Option

(EMOM for 30 Minutes)

  • 2 Pull-Ups
  • 4 Push-Ups
  • 6 Air Squats

Progression Tip:
Begin with longer rest intervals between rounds and reduce the number of rounds. As your conditioning improves, shorten rest periods and aim to complete all 30 rounds within the minute.

Push ups are a typical limiting factor for most CrossFitters. It's not a movement that we do regularly. That being said, here's how you can improve.

Diane

Diane is a time-based workout, featuring 21-15-9 repetitions of Deadlifts at 225 lbs and Handstand Push-Ups. Your score is the time it takes to complete all 90 reps.

The completion times range depending on your skill level. We wouldn’t recommend this workout for a beginner and instead opt for a scaled version.

Good Times for “Diane”

– Intermediate: 6-9 minutes

– Advanced: 5-6 minutes

– Elite: <4 minutes

Diane  Workout - Scaled Option

(For Time)

  • 21-15-9 repetitions of Deadlifts at a lower weight
    (e.g., 135/95 lbs for intermediate)
  • Hand-release Push-Ups or Elevated Push-Ups

Progression Tip:
Begin with a lighter deadlift weight and use a box or platform for handstand push-ups. As you gain strength and confidence, gradually increase the deadlift weight and work on handstand push-ups against the wall.

Ready to take it on? You might want to read our ultimate guide to handstand push ups. Guaranteed to get you the best score yet.

Elizabeth

Elizabeth is a workout that involves 21-15-9 repetitions of Cleans (135/95 lbs) and Ring Dips.

You strive to complete this as quickly as possible, with your time as the score. We wouldn’t recommend this workout for a beginner and instead opt for a scaled version.

Good Times for “Elizabeth”

– Intermediate: 7-10 minutes

– Advanced: 4-7 minutes

– Elite: <4 minutes

Elizabeth Workout - Scaled Option

For Time

  • 21-15-9 repetitions of cleans at a lower weight
    (e.g., 95/65 lbs for intermediate)
  • Box Dips or Bench Dips

Progression Tip:
Start with a lighter weight for cleans and use a band or box for ring dips. As you get stronger and more skilled, increase the weight and practice full range of motion ring dips.

Fran

Fran consists of 21-15-9 repetitions of Thrusters (95/65 lbs) and Pull-Ups, and your goal is to complete it as swiftly as you can.

Good Times for “Fran”

– Beginner: 7-9 minutes

– Intermediate: 6-7 minutes

– Advanced: 4-6 minutes

– Elite: <3 minutes

Fran Workout - Scaled Option

For Time

  • 21-15-9 repetitions of Thrusters at a lower weight
    (e.g., 65/45 lbs for intermediate)
  • Jumping Pull-Ups or Ring Rows

Progression Tip:
Begin with a lighter thruster weight and use a band or jumping pull-ups. Gradually increase the thruster weight and work on building the strength and technique for standard pull-ups.

For any CrossFitter, barbell thrusters are the ultimate test of strength and endurance.

The movement consists of three parts: 

  1. The bar starts on your shoulders
  2. You then squat below parallel 
  3. You end standing with the bar completely locked out overhead

While thrusters may seem straightforward, there is a right way and a wrong way to do them. If you want to get the best time in Fran, check our article on nailing thrusters.

Grace

Grace requires you to complete 30 Clean and Jerks (135/95 lbs) as quickly as possible. Your score is the time it takes to finish all 30 reps.

Good Times for “Grace”

– Beginner: 6-7 minutes

– Intermediate: 4-5 minutes

– Advanced: 3-4 minutes

– Elite: <2 minutes

Grace Workout - Scaled Option

For Time

  • 30 Clean and Jerks at a lower weight (e.g., 95/65 lbs)

Progression Tip:
Start with a lighter weight and focus on form and speed. As your technique improves, gradually increase the weight.

Aim to maintain good form as you progress to the RX weight.

30 clean and jerks is a lot of volume is you're new to CrossFit®. Make sure you read our article on how to get the best clean and jerk form here.

Helen

Helen consists of 3 rounds for time, including a 400-meter run, 21 Kettlebell swings, and 12 Pull-Ups.

Good Times for “Helen”

– Beginner: 15-17 minutes

– Intermediate: 11-14 minutes

– Advanced: 9-10 minutes

– Elite: <8 minutes

Helen Workout - Scaled Option

For Time
3 rounds:

  • 400-meter run
  • 15 Kettlebell swings (choose a weight suitable for your level)
  • 9 Jumping Pull-Ups or Ring Rows

Progression Tip:
Initially, reduce the run distance and use a lighter kettlebell. As your running and kettlebell swing proficiency increases, gradually increase the distance and kettlebell weight.

When it comes to kettlebells, its tempting to over work your back. Keep reading to get the correct technique.

Isabel

Isabel is a time-based workout where you complete 30 Snatches (135/95 lbs) as fast as possible.

Good Times for “Isabel”

– Beginner: 6-7 minutes

– Intermediate: 4-6 minutes

– Advanced: 3-4 minutes

– Elite: <2 minutes

Isabel Workout - Scaled Option

For Time

  • 30 Snatches at a lower weight (e.g., 95/65 lbs)

Progression Tip:
Begin with a lighter snatch weight and practice your snatch technique. Gradually increase the weight as you become more comfortable with the movement.

Nailing the "snatch" technique can be a mindmeld. But don't worry, with these easy tips, you can get the best Isabel time.

Jackie

Jackie is a workout for time, featuring a 1,000-meter row, 50 Thrusters, and 30 Pull-Ups.

Good Times for “Jackie”

– Beginner: 10-12 minutes

– Intermediate: 7-10 minutes

– Advanced: 6-7 minutes

– Elite: <6 minutes

Jackie Workout - Scaled Option

For Time

  • 1,000-meter row
  • 50 Thrusters at a lower weight (e.g., 45/35 lbs for intermediate)
  • 20 Jumping Pull-Ups or Ring Rows

Progression Tip:
Start with a lighter thruster weight and use jumping pull-ups or assisted pull-ups. As your strength and pull-up proficiency improve, gradually increase the thruster weight and aim for standard pull-ups.

There's more to rowing then just pulling. It's a full body workout. Make sure you're using every opportunity in your technique and read our ultimate guide to rowing before taking on Jackie.

Karen

Karen is all about completing 150 Wall-Ball shots (20/14 lbs) as fast as you can.

Good Times for “Karen”

– Beginner: 12-15 minutes

– Intermediate: 8-11 minutes

– Advanced: 6-7 minutes

– Elite: <5 minutes

Karen Workout - Scaled Option

For Time

  • 150 Wall-Ball shots using a lighter medicine ball (e.g., 14/10 lbs)

Progression Tip:

Begin with a lighter medicine ball and gradually increase the weight. Focus on accuracy and consistency in your wall-ball shots as you progress.

Wall balls might seems easy and straight forward, but when it comes to Karen's high volume, it become a totally different ball game (pun intended). If you want to get the best score, get out our ultimate guide.

Linda

Linda is an intricate workout involving descending ladder repetitions of Deadlifts, Bench Presses, and Cleans, with the load based on your body weight. It's performed in 10 rounds and scored by the total time taken.

Good Times for “Linda

– Beginner: 28-32 minutes
– Intermediate: 19-25 minutes
– Advanced: 14-17 minutes– Elite: <13 minutes

Linda Workout - Scaled Option

(For Time)

10 rounds with reduced weight:

  • Deadlifts (use a weight that challenges you but allows for good form)
  • Bench Presses (use a weight that challenges you but allows for good form)
  • Cleans (use a weight that challenges you but allows for good form)

Progression Tip:
Reduce the weight significantly at first and focus on building strength and proper form. Gradually increase the weight over time as your strength improves.

Benchpress is a movement that'll turn up in a workout when you least want it. Don't let that happen to you. Here's how you can nail bench.

Mary

Mary is an "As Many Rounds as Possible" (AMRAP) workout lasting 20 minutes. It consists of Handstand Push-Ups, Pistols, and Pull-Ups.

Your score is the number of rounds and reps completed. We wouldn’t recommend this workout for a beginner and instead opt for a scaled version.

Good Scores for “Mary”

– Intermediate: 9-12 rounds

– Advanced: 13-16 rounds

– Elite: 17+ rounds

Mary Workout - Scaled Option

AMRAP in 20 Minutes

  • 3 Push-Ups
  • 6 Air Squats
  • 9 Ring Rows or Bent-Over Rows with a barbell or dumbbells

Progression Tip:
Start with scaled versions of each movement and gradually work on progressing to the RX versions by building strength and improving your technique.

Even if you want to give this workout a go with the handstand push ups, here's how you can get started.

Nancy

Nancy entails 5 rounds for time, with each round consisting of a 400-meter run and 15 Overhead Squats (95/65 lbs).

Good Times for “Nancy”

– Beginner: 17-20+ minutes

– Intermediate: 13-16 minutes

– Advanced: 10-12 minutes

– Elite: <9  minutes

Nancy Workout - Scaled Option

For Time
5 rounds:

  • 400-meter run
  • 15 Overhead Squats at a lower weight (e.g., 65/45 lbs)

Progression Tip:

Initially, reduce the weight for overhead squats and work on mobility and technique. Gradually increase the weight as you become more comfortable with the movement.

Got the strength for this workout but not the mobility? Don't let your hips get in the way of a good workout. Here are the exercises you can do.

These benchmark workouts are more than just exercises.

They represent milestones and challenges that allow you to measure your progress and fitness level.

Remember to scale the movements and weights as needed, always keep technique in mind.

Think you need to be a pro athlete to benefit from personal coaching?

That's just not true.

All you need is the desire to invest in yourself and get better. His coaching services are open to anyone who wants to level up, no matter where you're starting from.

In a nutshell, taking the plunge into one-on-one coaching with WODprep is a game-changer.

It's a journey that's open to anyone ready to invest in themselves, whether you're a seasoned pro or just starting out.

With a dedicated coach by your side, you can unlock your full potential and score the results you've always dreamed of.

Don't wait for the "perfect" time – your journey to greatness starts right now!

To sign up, click the link and book a time that suits you.

It’s a personal experience starting from the first call. Guarantee'd to help you make progress every time you complete a benchmark workout.

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