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The phrase “bang for your buck” is overused in fitness, but it’s justified when talking about thrusters.
This hallmark CrossFit exercise is a combo of a front squat and a push press. Hence, thrusters check off a lot of boxes: lower body, upper-body push, core, and explosiveness. The only thing missing is upper-body pull, which is why the Fran workout pairs thrusters with pullups (21-15-9 reps of each for time).
“While the most famous application of thrusters comes in the form of Fran, the thruster can be performed by anyone looking to build muscle and stay lean,” says Zareh Amirian, CF-L1, former owner of CrossFit 818 in Glendale, CA. “Adding weight, removing the time component, or pausing at the bottom of the front squat are some of the ways thrusters can be tailored to fit into anyone’s workout routine.”
The below hypertrophy-friendly workout, designed by Amirian, is notably different from Fran: Rest periods are included, and rep counts are in the eight to 12 range. Pushups and lunges are added to further promote growth in the chest and legs, respectively.
Perform this WOD as a stand-alone full-body workout when you’re short on time but not ambition.