The CrossFit Girls — Benchmark your overall fitness. Download our spreadsheet and list of 27 CrossFit Girls plus a complete analysis of all 27 workouts.
The Girls – CrossFit Benchmark WODs
CrossFit has been under fire lately for lack of sensitivity to minority populations. CrossFit has historically been a strong promoter of women in sports. While companies like the Olympia have frequently objectified women for looking too muscular/masculine and set rules to force women to look a certain way, CrossFit has always supported women of every shape and size. CrossFit cares not what you look like… there are no trophies for looking good1 Winning in CrossFit is measured by improving your health and fitness. And when it comes to the CrossFit games themselves, it’s fittest not the prettiest that wins. And that’s the way it should be.
Way back when CrossFit first came on the scene, Greg Glassman introduced the concept of a benchmark workout. Glassman built six benchmarks workouts in September 2003: Angie, Barbara, Chelsea, Diane, Elizabeth and Fran. These workouts became known as “The Girls.” These workouts became immensely popular and he quickly added 6 more to the lineup. Isabel, Jackie, Karen, Linda, Mary, Nancy. That listed quickly expanded to 21. Most of the CrossFit Girls PDFs I could find just list the first 21 Girl WODS. But did you know there are more than 21 Girl WODS?
CrossFit WODS Reviewed
Below you’ll find our average class times for the all 27 CrossFit Girl WODS. Additionally, you’ll find my personal comments on each of the workouts having done them as coached in CrossFit classes.
Amanda – Target 14 Minutes
For time: 9-7-5 reps of muscle-ups and squat snatches (135/95lb).
Amanda features two of CrossFit’s most complicated & common exercises: the squat Snatch and Muscle-up. Both take months (years) to master. Scaling options are limited for these exercises without greatly changing the stimulus.
Angie – Target 28 Minutes
For time: 100 pull-ups, 100 push-ups, 100 sit-ups, 100 squats.
Angie is the workout that people think about when they think CrossFitters do poor pullups. 100 pullups straight is tough … may be too much so. From a training point of view, I can’t see any reason to have someone do that many. 100 of everything makes it sound nice, but there are better ways to program a workout like this. Even doing the Pullups as bookends 50 to start and 50 to finish would have been better.
Annie – Target 11 Minutes
For time: 50-40-30-20-10 reps of double-unders and sit-ups.
Annie is one of the better CrossFit Girls workouts, especially if you can do double-unders. The problem with double-unders is that they do not scale well to single-unders in terms of intensity. When programming for novices, I double the number of turns for single unders. If you are going to do CrossFit seriously, you’ll need to learn the double-under sooner or later.
Barbara – Target 8 Minutes Per Round
For time: five rounds of 20 pull-ups, 30 push-ups, 40 sit-ups, 50 air squats, 3 minutes rest.
Barbara is very similar in terms of volume to Angie. Both have 100 pullups, pushups, and squats. We don’t see this workout too often in boxes, because it doesn’t make sure of the equipment members like to use. It also is challenging to time with the forced rest. Doing well on Barbara is all about being unbroken for the whole workout.
Candy – Target 38 Minutes
Five rounds for time of: 20 Pull-ups, 40 Push-ups, 60 Squats.
Candy is an excellent simple WOD. It’s high volume of pullups and pushups with tax your energy systems. From a benchmark perspective, you’ll get to see an advanced athlete’s conditioning level. Similar to Barbara and Angie, this WOD is best low equipment girl in Paul’s opinion.
Chelsea – Target 20 Rounds
Every minute on the minute (EMOM): 5 pull-ups, 10 push-ups, 15 air squats for a total of 30 minutes.
Chelsea is an interesting WOD in that the idea is to keep going for as many rounds as you can. It works well in small classes. Scaling can be challenging as you’ll want your class to be able to work 20-30 rounds.
Cindy – Target 12 Rounds
As many rounds as possible (AMRAP) in 20 minutes: 5 pull-ups, 10 push-ups, 15 air squats.
Cindy is very similar to Chelsea in that it’s pullups, pushups, and air squats. Cindy works very well in classes, and can be scaled up by adding load to the air squat. Or scale to a chest to bar.
Diane – Target 10 Minutes
For time: 21-15-9 reps of deadlifts (225/155lb) and handstand push-ups.
Diane’s choice of a heavy deadlift and the Handstand Pushup makes this WOD tough for many people. It’s one of my favorite Girl WODS by far. Scaling the HPSU is easy — just use a box or use the dumbbell shoulder press. If 225 is too much, just lower the weight on the deadlift.
Elizabeth – Target 14 Minutes
For time: 21-15-9 reps of squat cleans (135/95lb) and ring dips.
Elizabeth and Amanda are very similar in both volume and skill. However, Elizabeth is more accessible to most athletes. It works opposite muscle’s like Fran below, and provides an overall excellent, quick workout
Eva – Target 70 Minutes
Five rounds for time: 800-meter run, 30 kettlebell swings (2 pood), 30 pull-ups.
Eva is a tough, long workout. Three “simple” exercises: a run, swings, and pullups. The volume will crush you. Plan to scale the number of rounds in a large class.
Fran – Target 9 Minutes
For time: 21-15-9 reps of thruster (95/75lb) and pull-ups.
Fast and light, Fran is one of most commonly done CrossFit WODS. It’s a sprint workout, so reduce your load if you need more than 10 minutes to finish this WOD.
Grace – Target 8 Minutes
For time: 30 clean-and-jerks (135/95lb).
Grace is probably my favorite CrossFit Girl. 30 Clean and Jerks is way harder than you expect it’ll be. Personally, I find adding in the jerk unnecessarily slows down this WOD. I often scale it to push press.
Gwen – Target 390 Pounds
15-12-9 Reps for Load. Clean-and-Jerks (unbroken). Rest as needed between sets. Score is weight used for all three unbroken sets. Each set must be unbroken (touch and go at floor) only; even a re-grip off the floor is a foul. Use same load for each set.
Gwen is a unique WOD in that you need pick your poison. Go as light as need, but your score is based on the weight. It’s a great WOD, highly recommended.
Helen – Target 16 Minutes
Three rounds for time: 400-meter run, 21 kettlebell swings (50/35lb), 12 pull-ups.
Running and pullups is a very tough combo to pull-off in most gyms. You always gave enter and exit a building and that slows down the WOD considerably. Helen is best done in a public park, just bring a kettlebell and measure out 400M.
Hope – Target 150 Points
Three rounds of: Burpees, 75 pound Power snatch, Box jump, 24″ box, 75 pound Thruster, Chest to bar Pull-ups. “Hope” has the same format as Fight Gone Bad.
FGB WODS are super fun and Hope is no different. It’s a choose your own adventure, rack up the points on what you are good at. Scaling is generally easy as well.
Isabel – Target 16 Minutes
For time: 30 snatches (135/95lb).
Isabel and Grace are sister WODS. 30 snatches for time at #135 is tough. Prepare to scale this WOD if you aren’t a professional Olympic lifter.
Jackie – Target 18 Minutes
For time: 1,000-meter row, 50 thrusters (45/35lb), 30 pull-ups.
I like Jackie a lot. It’s one of my favorite Girl WODS. Unlike most Girls it’s a chipper. You only do it once. Unlike Angie, it doesn’t have an insane number of pullups. Scaling the thrusters is tough. Personally, I think dumbbells are better on this WOD.
Karen – Target 15 Minutes
For time: 150 wall ball shots (20/14lb).
Simple and effective for measuring conditioning, Karen is 150 Wall balls AFAP. A single element workout is a good choice when your membership is struggling with technique on a certain exercise. Single element workouts can bore members if they are done too often. Once in a while, they are a nice change of pace.
Kelly – Target 50 Minutes
Five rounds for time: 400-meter run, 30 box jumps (24/20 inch), 30 wall ball shots (20/14 lbs).
Long high volume workout. Box jumps and wall balls is always tough, add in a 400M sprint, and it’s really hard. 5 rounds — rough, especially for your powerlifting clients. This workout works better for most gyms with just the wall balls and 400M run, so that you don’t have drag boxes outside.
Linda – Target 30 Minutes
For time: 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 reps of deadlift (1.5 BW), bench press (BW), clean (0.75 BW).
Whereas Kelly, I can do without, Linda is a very clever workout. Nicknamed the 3 bars of death, Linda is a tough WOD to be sure. In fact, benchpress is almost never done in a metcon workout. For powerlifters, the weights are pretty spot-on. For novices, just scale down the weights a little bit. You’ll lots and lots of plates for this WOD, so consider that when programming this WOD for your class.
Lynne – Target 20 Minutes
Five rounds for max reps: bench press (body weight) and pull-ups.
I like Lynne a lot. Max reps WODS are fun. I always put a time cap on Lynne. Also, be very clean in specifying what counts as a rep and what does not. I often have half the class do the rep counting. This way, I’m not the bad guy, no repping the weak pullups.
Maggie – Target 60 Minutes
5 Rounds for Time: 20 Handstand Push-Ups, 40 Pull-Ups, 60 Pistols (Alternating Legs).
Maggie is a tough workout for a lot of people. High volume pull-ups, pistols squats, and HSPU makes Maggie a super tough workout. Be prepared with scaling options (box pistols, ring rows, and pike pushups are good choices. On the plus side, it’s easy to do in most gyms equipment-wise.
Marguerita – Target 25 Minutes
50 reps for time of: Burpee/Push-up/Jumping-Jack/Sit-up/Handstand
Marguerita is a unique WOD in that it has a bodyweight combination for high volume. What makes the workout on the weaker side is scoring what counts as a handstand. While handstand holds are good skill WODs, reps for a handstand is unusual. Differing skills makes the handstand difficult to provide a global scaling.
Mary – Target 5 Rounds
As many rounds as possible (AMRAP) in 20 minutes: 5 handstand push-ups, 10 pistols (alternating legs), 15 pull-ups.
Maggie & Mary are similar workouts. One is a rounds for time base, the other is an AMRAP. They both tough, be prepared with scalings for your clients.
Megan – Target 8 Minutes
21-15-9 reps for time of: Burpees,KB Swings (53/35), Double-Unders
Megan uses the familiar 21 15 9 but does so with a combination of burpees, swings, and double unders. Fast and strong, this a sprint workout.
Nancy – Target 22 Minutes
For time: five rounds of 400-meter run and 15 overhead squats (95/65lb).
Nancy is another run WOD, but it combines the run with the OHS. 95 is a heavier weight for the OHS so this simple looking WOD is plenty hard in the required volume. It definitely will show you the weaknesses of your athletes.
Nicole – 55 Reps
As many rounds as possible (AMRAP) in 20 minutes: 400-meter run and max reps pull-ups.
Nicole is something Nancy and something like Lynne. An excellent WOD to do in a park. Just bring some exercise bands to help your athletes with pullups.
The CrossFit Girl WODS: Short List
- Amanda: For time: 9-7-5 reps of muscle-ups and squat snatches (135/95lb).
- Angie: For time: 100 pull-ups, 100 push-ups, 100 sit-ups, 100 squats.
- Annie: For time: 50-40-30-20-10 reps of double-unders and sit-ups.
- Barbara: For time: five rounds of 20 pull-ups, 30 push-ups, 40 sit-ups, 50 air squats, 3 minutes rest.
- Candy: Five rounds for time of: 20 Pull-ups, 40 Push-ups, 60 Squats
- Chelsea: Every minute on the minute (EMOM): 5 pull-ups, 10 push-ups, 15 air squats for a total of 30 minutes.
- Cindy: As many rounds as possible (AMRAP) in 20 minutes: 5 pull-ups, 10 push-ups, 15 air squats.
- Diane: For time: 21-15-9 reps of deadlifts (225/155lb) and handstand push-ups.
- Elizabeth: For time: 21-15-9 reps of squat cleans (135/95lb) and ring dips.
- Eva: Five rounds for time: 800-meter run, 30 kettlebell swings (2 pood), 30 pull-ups.
- Fran: For time: 21-15-9 reps of thruster (95/75lb) and pull-ups.
- Grace: For time: 30 clean-and-jerks (135/95lb).
- Gwen: 15-12-9 Reps for Load. Clean-and-Jerks (unbroken). Rest as needed between sets. Score is weight used for all three unbroken sets. Each set must be unbroken (touch and go at floor) only; even a re-grip off the floor is a foul. Use same load for each set.
- Helen: Three rounds for time: 400-meter run, 21 kettlebell swings (50/35lb), 12 pull-ups.
- Hope: Three rounds of: Burpees, 75 pound Power snatch, Box jump, 24″ box, 75 pound Thruster, Chest to bar Pull-ups. “Hope” has the same format as Fight Gone Bad. 2 In this workout you move from each of five stations after a minute. This is a five-minute round from which a one-minute break is allowed before repeating. The clock does not reset or stop between exercises. On call of “rotate,” the athlete/s must move to next station immediately for good score. One point is given for each rep.
- Isabel: For time: 30 snatches (135/95lb).
- Jackie: For time: 1,000-meter row, 50 thrusters (45/35lb), 30 pull-ups.
- Karen: For time: 150 wall ball shots (20/14lb).
- Kelly: Five rounds for time: 400-meter run, 30 box jumps (24/20 inch), 30 wall ball shots (20/14 lbs).
- Linda: For time: 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 reps of deadlift (1.5 BW), bench press (BW), clean (0.75 BW).
- Lynne: Five rounds for max reps: bench press (body weight) and pull-ups.
- Maggie: 5 Rounds for Time: 20 Handstand Push-Ups, 40 Pull-Ups, 60 Pistols (Alternating Legs).
- Marguerita: 50 reps for time of: Burpee/Push-up/Jumping-Jack/Sit-up/Handstand
- Mary: As many rounds as possible (AMRAP) in 20 minutes: 5 handstand push-ups, 10 pistols (alternating legs), 15 pull-ups.
- Megan: 21-15-9 reps for time of: • Burpees • KB Swings (53/35) • Double-Unders
- Nancy: For time: five rounds of 400-meter run and 15 overhead squats (95/65lb).
- Nicole: As many rounds as possible (AMRAP) in 20 minutes: 400-meter run and max reps pull-ups.
How Many Girl WODS Are There?
Many people believe there are 21, since Greg posted the below poster on Facebook. CrossFit never updated their PDF as they released new WODS, like Maggie and Marguerita. To make matters more complicated, CrossFit has some very popular variations like Cindy XXX. Is that a new WOD? In addition, many of the CrossFit Hero WODS are named after female soldiers. Hero WODS are a different type of workout altogether. So after studying the CrossFit girls for about 30 hours or so, I have concluded that there are 27 total girls. Anyone, who thinks otherwise, please add a comment below. Maybe I missed one?
Paul on the CrossFit Girls
At its core, I want to believe that all the Girls are created equal. Each evenly valuable in your gym’s or personal programming arsenal. That is not the case. Some are better than others for a variety of reasons. Some are more original, some easier to program, so are just downright more fun to do. Having done them all several times, here are my thoughts on the 27 CrossFit Girl WODS.
CrossFit Girls Table
|B||8 Minutes Per Round||Low||High||Low||Uncommon||N||Y||Y||N|
|D||10 Minutes||High||High||High||Very Common||Y||N||Y||N|
|D||9 Minutes||High||High||Low||Very Common||Y||N||Y||N|
A Family of Girls
As you’ll see in my comments in the table some of the girls are similar. If you sort by family, you can see related workouts.
Why a Girl’s Name?
Why girls’ names? “I want to explain the workout once and then give it a name. I thought that anything that left you flat on your back, looking up at the sky asking ‘what just happened to me?’ deserved a female’s name. Workouts are just like storms, they wreak havoc on towns.” —Greg Glassman, Founder of CrossFit. Here is Glassman’s / CrossFit’s PDF listing the original 21 Girls.
Variations on the Girls
In the CrossFit games and on CrossFit main site, you will find many variations of these Girls workouts. My personal favorite is Complex Fran.
CrossFit Hero WODS
Hero workouts are similar to CrossFit Girls, but they are generally tougher, named after fallen soldiers, and there are more of them.
CrossFit Girl Links
- Although certainly beauty affects sponsorship from companies like Nike or Born Primitive. ↩
- Three rounds of: Wall-ball, 20 pound ball, 10 ft target (Reps), Sumo deadlift high-pull, 75 pounds (Reps), Box Jump, 20″ box (Reps), Push-press, 75 pounds (Reps), Row (Calories). In this workout you move from each of five stations after a minute.The clock does not reset or stop between exercises. This is a five-minute round from which a one-minute break is allowed before repeating. On call of “rotate”, the athletes must move to next station immediately for best score. One point is given for each rep, except on the rower where each calorie is one point. ↩