Why You Should Start Doing The Farmer Carry Today

Farmer Carry
Every had your grip blow out during a workout?

Are you looking to strengthen your grip so you can do more pull ups, have a stronger deadlift, and want to know the benefits of farmers' careries? 

We got you. 

Grip strength is one of the three things (mobility, core, and grip strength) that I really drive home when first taking on a new client within our fitness programs

We are going to be covering quite a few different topics so if you want to skip directly to the topic you have the most interest, click the link below and be taken right there. 

A Few Different Examples Of Grip Strength Before Diving Into The Benefits

Grip strength will “unlock” your ability to do a lot more exercises and pull some really heavy weight. I have some different feats of strength of deadlifts and pull ups listed below. In the videos below I’m going to show you the difference in Strength VS Strength Endurance 

Absolute Strength

One Rep Max Deadlift - This is a true test of not only grip strength but overall strength. If you notice in the video I don't have the mixed grip which is a cheat for a weak grip. It's okay, I used to do it too until I found out you could actually get injured from mixing your grip. Then I stopped.

Deadlifted 3X My bodyweight check out the video and give it a thumbs up!

Strength Endurance

10 Rep Deadlift - A lot of people can pick up heavy weight and that's great. But do you have the grip strength to handle moderate weight without using the mix grip? If you don't work on that.

Smooth 325 deadlift for 10 with no mixed girp

Absolute Strength - 123 lb Weighted Pull Up

Similar to the one rep max deadlift video from above to achieve these heavy numbers a lot of training goes into being able to get here. Progressive overload training over many of years can do the same for you.

After filming our exercises for our programs for hours on end Goose my videographer clearly challenged me that I couldn't do a 100 lbs pull up. So I did 123 lbs 🙂

Strength Endurance - 20 Strict Pull Ups

The ability to crank out a ton of pull ups (20+) with ease comes from a lot of grip work. The ability to hold on to the pull up bar (after a five event crossfit competition by the way) is an example of why you need to vary the duration of your farmer walks.

My personal record is 32 strict pull ups from when I was in the military.

Benefits Of The Farmers Walk

Never have your grip be the reason you can’t do something. 

Strengthening your grip with farmers walk is simple. It’s grunt work. You pick up a pair of heavy dumbbells, kettlebells or even a trap bar and you either hold it and get a good isometric hold or you challenge your core with walking.

Just like in the videos above you saw an example of one rep max strength and strength endurance and you want the same training principles to apply when performing the farmers walk. 

what is a farmer carry crossfit
Hey, don't neglet the little things.

What Is Farmers Carry In Crossfit

I don’t see enough strongman work done in most crossfit settings. When I was in the military we carried these heavy water containers and I remember it was one of the hardest things we did. The water was sloshing around and of course we were doing a bunch of crazy things in between the carries.

I remember this one time there were four of us. Three of us had to carry an enormous tire overhead (don’t remember how heavy it was) and the fourth person had to carry the water containers for two miles. It was absolutely brutal and freaking awesome. The person carrying was to motivate and lead the team on the tire. 

That’s one of the reasons why I program partner workouts in our fitness programs every weekend. Community and accountability bring the best out of people and that’s all I want for our community. 

We give you the tools, education, and support...you put in the work. 

what muscles do farmer walk work
Static hangs are another great way to strengthen your grip

What Muscles Do Farmers Walk Work

Farmers walks are one the best way to strengthen your grip, lats, abs, biceps, traps, you name it. It’s an exercise that is under utilized and not done properly often...what do you mean? You aren’t carrying heavy enough weight is what I mean. 

I can promise you that if you start doing more farmers walk you will see a direct carry over in your ability to:

  • Cycle the barbell better
  • Deadlift without flipping your grip. Stop doing that by the way, here is why.
Muscle and mass
Squeeze your shoulder blades together when you do farmers walks. Most people don't.

Do Farmers Walk Build Muscle & Mass?

Absolutely. One benefit being you are going to see is so much strength carry over to your other lifts and why it will increase your deadlift. I can’t say this enough the stronger your grip is the stronger you will be. 

The farmer walk is an isometric hold the entire time. Same with the king of all ab exercises, the L Sit. Isometric holds whether it be L Sits or Farmer Carries are hard and get you really strong. 

Because your muscles are firing the entire time. Time under tension is key to getting stronger and why it’s so good for you. It’s the reason why we have our K2 Levels within each training program

Time under tension will get you STRONG.

To get stronger at a particular movement you don’t just keep trying to do it over and over again. There are steps you need to master before getting there. 

Example:

If a workout says to perform 10 pull ups and you can only do two at a time it’s not best to just do sets of 2 as fast as you can. You want to get the right “training stimulus” AKA choose an exercise that allows you to get 10 reps of time under tension.

Master the basics of the pull up first.
If you can't do a pull up yet. Try this and control your way down.

What Is A Good Farmer Carry Weight

The weight you choose for farmers walks is going to depend on a few things:

  1. Distance 
  2. Duration
  3. Relative strength

The longer the duration the lighter the weight and the shorter the duration the heavier you need to go. 

I want you to be able to walk 60 seconds at:

  • Advanced - 60% of bodyweight (not per hand)
  • Intermediate - 40% 
  • Beginner - 25%

So if you weigh 200 lbs and you consider yourself intermediate I would want to be able to walk for 60 seconds with 80 lbs per hand. If you are thinking there is no way I can do that you can obviously tell how important I believe grip strength is.

If you are ready to get stronger, strengthen your grip, get better at deadlifts, pull ups, all of that then take our quiz and see which program is best for by taking the quiz below. 

How Long Should You Do A Farmer Carry

Reference the text above on what weight I recommend for you based on the distance but here are a few of my favorite farmer carry workouts. These are pulled directly from our online fitness programs. 

Comment below with which workout is your favorite of the three!

Farmer Carry Workout 1

10 Minute  EMOM (Every minute on the minute)

  1. 6 x Weighted Pull Up OR Strict Pull Up OR Banded Pull Up
  1. 40 Yard Farmer Carry  (Men 75/60/40 & Women 40/35/30)

Farmer Carry Workout 2

8 Minute EMOM (Every minute on the minute)

  1. 8 x Weighted Pull Up OR Strict Pull Up OR Banded Pull Up
  1. 20 x DB Chest Press

When the clock hits 8:00 complete:

Three sets of:

  1.  Farmer Carry x 100 Yards (Men - 28/24/20 kg & Women - 20/16/12 kg)
  2. Rest x 90 seconds
Don't make fun of me for how light I was using in the demo video 😛
Here is a video to make up for it haha. This workout was every 4 minutes x 4 sets Farmer Carry x 60 seconds with 280 lbs (shown in video) that got tough!

Farmer Carry Workout 3

Every 4 minutes x 4 sets 

  1. 30 seconds x  Chin Up Hold
  1. 25 Yards x Plate Pinch Carry
  1. 25 Yards x Farmer Carry
  1. 20 x American Kettlebell Swing OR Kettlebell Swing
crossfit
See, I used to use a mixed grip too. No bueno.

Does The Farmers' Walk Increase Your Deadlift? 

Yes! Strengthen your grip, your core, your posterior chain and you can expect great things to happen with your deadlift. Just make sure you are lifting properly of course. Check out the tutorial below or if you are a reader click here for a full breakdown. 

Conclusion

We showed you some examples of how strength can come in the form of one rep absolute strength and also strength endurance.

Both are important. 

Be sure to try some of the farmers walk workouts we gave you above and take our strength training program for a spin. You can join now for just $1 by clicking here

fitness program
Your coaches Kevin & Katie

PS

We talked about the importance of grip strength AND core strength. So we are decided to create a FREE five day video ab series that is dedicated to strengthening your core. Check it out here!

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