2020 presented us with some unexpected challenges.  Some let those challenges become obstacles stopping them from realizing their fitness goals, others used the same impediments as springboards to crush their goals.  Blade reached out from way up north to share how she used 2020’s setbacks to realize a great leap forward in her fitness.  Here’s her story:

“With the pandemic, we can no longer count on the grocery store to buy our food. We are often left with empty shelves for two weeks at a time.  This situation forces me to invest my earnings in locally sourced vegetables and meat, which are fabulously healthy for my family and amazing for our local farms but very expensive compared to the produce found in the grocery store. I am proud and happy about this change, however, it no longer leaves me the financial means of a CrossFit membership, even a zoom-only.

Don’t worry though, I found a way to workout everyday with a simple online meal and fitness program and I’m happy to report that I’m 30 pounds lighter!  My fitness journey is not yet over, but I have found a healthy relationship with training and eating. Which was for me the main challenge. 

I wish you all to stay healthy and many more years of success to the CrossFit Empower!”


Congratulations Blade and job well done!

Monday Deadlifts
The two greatest lifts for developing full body strength are the back squat and the deadlift.  Strength development requires both tissue level adaptations (muscle) and neurological adaptations (central nervous system).  For optimal muscle stimulation you need volume.  For neurological adaptations, you need load.  The one rep max deadlift day does not provide the volume required to significantly impact tissue adaptation, it is programmed specifically to elicit neurological adaptations by challenging your body at very heavy singles.  This means taking big breaks between sets, not because your muscle tissue is fatigued but in order to let your central nervous system recover between sets to allow maximal loading.  This is a very taxing workout!

If you do not have adjustable loading options for this workout we can simulate a one rep max by fatiguing your system with max rep sets.  That means doing as many unbroken reps as possible until you cannot complete any more.  The final rep will in effect be a one rep max in your current state of fatigue.  The volume required in this case will also result in significant tissue level adaptations.

If your lifting implement is very light and would allow you to do more than 20 reps, I recommend using it to do a Russian Kettlebell Swing instead of a deadlift.  The Russian Swing is a basic hip hinge just as the deadlift is so you will be practicing a mechanically similar movement pattern. 

If you are doing sets to failure you will require fewer sets and much more recovery time than people working with maximal loads.  Either way you play it, today is a big day!  Do not underestimate the deadlift.

Equipment: Barbell or alternative, KB or alternative

Warm Up
3 rounds:
1 min Full Body Rocks
1 min empty barbell Romanian Deadlifts
1 min Russian KB Swings

Deadlift or alternative options


Cool Down
Dragon Pose
Pigeon Pose
Hip Cross Overs