As I watched last Thursday's AM SWOD class get ready to get their 1 rep maxes on for test day, something struck me.... a lot of people have questions about how to warm up for a PR max lift. I'll be the first to say - it's an individual thing. But while the overall volume will vary person to person, there is such a thing as too much (worn out before you get to PR City) or too little (you arrive at PR City nowhere near mentally or physically prepared for it's splendor). Let's talk warmup..
A couple of asides:
First, I should clarify, I am talking about the lift specific portion of your warmup. We are walking into this conversation post general warm up and mobility.
Second, there is one thing every seasoned CrossFitter should know come PR time -- what your current PR is. If you're not tracking your efforts yet, we need to be having a different conversation...
Now, back to the warm up conversation...
Speaking for myself, I like to take 5ish sets to my intended PR. But depending on the movement, how sore and creaky your body is, and how heavy you are going, you may take up to 9 sets to get there.
Start with 30-50% of your current 1RM and complete 5 - 10 reps to get your body moving. From there you want to move up steadily towards your weight, continuing to work down in reps. You may do a few speed doubles at 60-65% to wake up your central nervous system. By the time you get to 80-85%, you should be at singles.
*Note - you should never match your pr! That's what the "baby" plates are for!
The PR Lift:
Get amped. No, not this second. But if it's PR time, you better get amped. In the professional world, this might be achieved by smacking your legs, having someone smack your traps, giving a quick war cry, sniffing ammonia.... anything to get your body/nerves at attention and give yourself a mini adrenaline rush. Unless you have an iron-clad mental game, try adding some amp-up to your pre-lift routine. You may think it looks/feels weird, but ask any of your coaches how a little leg smack can take you the last 5% to a made lift.
FYI - tomorrow will be a great opportunity to put this reading to use..... just saying...