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Challenge Workout by Dan John

521 7
  • For Load
  • Pick a Lift and Load, then perform:
  • 100 reps
  • Sample:
  • 100 Squat Snatches (165 lb)
  • 100 Power Cleans (205 lb)
  • 100 Clean-and-Jerks (185 lb)
  • 100 Front Squats (255 lb)

For the sake of clarity, it’s not 10 sets of 10 or whatever; it’s 100 singles. The idea is to pick a load that’s challenging and continue doing it over and over. The workout can last over an hour and you might find that you have minutes filled with multiple reps, interspersed with five-minute periods of pure rest.

Score is the load used for all the 100 reps.

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Background: This workout was one of the challenge workouts Dan John posted on T-Nation back in 2014. It was inspired by Kim Woods, the strength coach of the Cincinnati Bengals during the Super Bowl years, who discussed the 100-rep challenge. Dan said, “I loved it and it remains a staple of my challenges to this day.

Each time I do this workout, I come away with a better appreciation of the set up involved for each and every lift. It’s actually a teaching session for experienced lifters. One added benefit: You’ll become an expert at math as you begin to think at, for example, twenty reps, that you’re one-fifth there. Which is twenty percent. And that means you have 80 to go. Which is 4/5ths. It’s fun and educational!”

Dan John has spent his life with one foot in the world of lifting and throwing, and the other foot in academia. An All-American discus thrower, Dan has also competed at the highest levels of Olympic lifting, Highland Games and the Weight Pentathlon, an event in which he holds the American record.

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