I love barbell complexes.

I also hate them!

Complexes are great for you!  They can be a whole workout in one.  Sometimes it’s like a mini WAR!  Each set can be brutal!!

You got to be a SOLDIER and bust through everything that stands in your way!

The particular complex I did on this day, I chose 3 movements…

The Front Squat, Push Press, and Thruster.

Before I get into more of the workout, lets explain a little bit behind complexes.

So what is a complex??

Well it’s when you string a  number of different movements together to form one whole set of movements.

A common complex would look like this…

1a) Barbell clean x 5

1b) Barbell front squat x 5

1c) Barbell Push Press x 5

1d) Barbell Back Squat x 5….

You could add more or do less.  What ever you choose!

With complexes, there are many types you can do.  They don’t all have to be with barbells.  You can perform them with dumbbells, kettlebells, sandbags, and even bodyweight.

There are also a ton of different ways you can use complexes.  You can go for strength, power, conditioning, or for building mass.   It’s all in how you much weight you use and the rep scheme you choose.

So for strength, I would recommend using heavier weight with reps of 3-5 and no more.  For power, I would use a moderate weight with 3-5 reps.  For conditioning, you could go anywhere from 5-15 reps with a lower to moderate weight.

Either way, complexes can get BRUTAL!

I usually prefer strength and power when doing complexes.

The important thing to think about is when you’re going for strength, when doing a complex, you limit yourself and the complex to your weakest lift in the chain of movements you include in the complex.  For example, when I did this one, I had to limit the weight due to the fact I couldn’t thrust as much as I could front squat.    This is common sense when working with complexes or should be.

When you’re going for conditioning, the weight you’ll use will be a lot lighter than what you would use for strength.

I can remeber doing these back in high school but not know any thing about what I was actually doing!

My old wrestling coach would have us hit these after wrestling practice.  We usually would do back cleans x 5, squats x 10, military by 10, and then lunges x 5/leg.  I would be TORN UP after those!

So, in this particular training session, I hit 3 moves – Front Squats, Push Press, and Thrusters.


I HATE front squats and thrusters!  I don’t know why but I do!

I need to work on these to get stronger and more fluid!

As an added bonus, I would do a set of 20 pull ups after each set of complex I hit.  I started off with strict pull ups but then I turned to kipping pull ups.

I NEED WORK ON THESE!  Kipping Pull ups are still brand new to me.  I need to work on my technique to get more efficient!

I got the Crossfit Sectionals coming up quick so I need to get my ass in high gear!

Speaking of goals, how are YOUR GOALS coming along so far in 2011???

All in all, this session was another huge test!  I got pretty fatigued in the last set of my complexes.  I wanted to quit more than anything but in those times you just got to push yourself even harder!

You’ve got to DIG!

Make sure you keep digging and getting after it with what ever it is your doing!

Tomorrow I take it easy!

Live Aggressive and Get Strong!


PS – For those of you HARDCORE readers out there, I got a nice little GIFT I would like to send your way.

If you’re looking to get LEANER, and more RIPPED, I got a nice report just for you!