The Barbara CrossFit Workout in 2024 (Tips & Tricks For You)

As a challenging benchmark WOD (Workout of the Day), the Barbara CrossFit Workout is a high-intensity bodyweight routine that tests and improves my strength and endurance equally.

all you need to know about the barbara crossfit workout with structure, score, and goal times in one infographic
Structure of the Barbara CrossFit Workout:
Barbara stands out with its unique structure of five rounds, making me dig deep into my reserves of courage and stamina. Each round consists of a sequence of pull-ups, push-ups, sit-ups, and air squats.

Step-by-Step Workout Structure

The Barbara CrossFit workout challenges my fitness with a high-intensity combination of gymnastics and calisthenics. It’s a race against the clock and every second counts in your CrossFit workout journey!

Barbara WOD Breakdown

In Barbara, I’ll tackle a series of five rounds for time, involving four different exercises. Here’s the exciting challenge laid out:

  1. 20 Pull-ups: Initiating the round with a demanding upper body pull.
  2. 30 Push-ups: Moving on to a push element to work my chest and triceps.
  3. 40 Sit-ups: Targeting my core, keeping the intensity high.
  4. 50 Air Squats: Concluding with a lower body move, challenging my endurance.


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This structure means that I will complete all reps of one exercise before moving on to the next, maintaining form and speed.

Executing the Rounds for Time

My goal is to finish all five rounds as quickly as possible. My score will be the total time taken, including rest periods. The volume of reps is significant, summing up to a total of 100 pull-ups, 150 push-ups, 200 sit-ups, and 250 air squats. Maintaining a steady pace while executing each repetition with proper form is crucial for a good score.

Pacing and Rest Strategy

The key to mastering Barbara is pacing. Pushing too hard too early can lead to burnout, so I need to be mindful:

  • Start at a sustainable pace
  • Break up the gymnastics reps into manageable sets

Rest is equally strategic, with three minutes of rest after each round. This allows my muscles to recover and ready up for the next set of exercises. It’s not just a break; it’s prep time for what’s next!

Boat Interior Design trained woman before her crossfit benchmark barbara workout
by Pinterest

Equipment for the Barbara CrossFit Workout

When I tackle Barbara, one of the quintessential CrossFit “Girl” workouts, I’m always pumped by how straightforward the equipment needs are! This workout is a powerhouse of gymnastics movements, challenging both my strength and endurance. Let me break down what I use for each movement:

  • Pull-Ups: For these, I need a sturdy pull-up bar. It’s essential for nailing that grip and perfecting my form.
  • Sit-Ups: While not mandatory, an ab mat can be a true lifesaver. It supports my lower back and helps me focus on targeting those core muscles.
  • Air Squats: No special equipment here! Just me and the space around me. Bodyweight is king for squats, but I make sure I have enough room to maintain solid form.

Here’s a simple checklist of the equipment that helps me crush Barbara:

Pull up bar
ALLY PEAKS Pull Up Bar Thickened Steel Pipe Super Heavy Duty Steel Frame Upper Workout Bar| Multi-Grip Strength for Doorway | Indoor Chin-Up Bar Fitness Trainer for Home Gym Portable (silver2)
Yoga Mat
Amazon Basics Extra Thick Exercise Yoga Gym Floor Mat with Carrying Strap, 74 x 24 x .5 Inches, Black
Amazon Prime
Amazon Prime
Pull up bar
ALLY PEAKS Pull Up Bar Thickened Steel Pipe Super Heavy Duty Steel Frame Upper Workout Bar| Multi-Grip Strength for Doorway | Indoor Chin-Up Bar Fitness Trainer for Home Gym Portable (silver2)
Amazon Prime
Yoga Mat
Amazon Basics Extra Thick Exercise Yoga Gym Floor Mat with Carrying Strap, 74 x 24 x .5 Inches, Black
Amazon Prime

With this pull-up bar and a yoga mat, I’m more than equipped to face the challenge. Time to get after it!

Benefits of the Barbara CrossFit Workout

In the thrilling world of CrossFit, the Barbara CrossFit workout is a celebrated benchmark that meticulously gauges my progress and power. A thrilling journey towards smashing personal limits, every session is an exhilarating endurance test.

Muscular Endurance and Power

My muscular endurance skyrockets when I tackle the Barbara CrossFit Workout. The intensive sequence of pull-ups, push-ups, sit-ups, and air squats in rapid succession means I’m pushing muscle groups to their peak performance. Catered to enhance my power through repetitive motion, each round offers me a chance to prove just how far I can push my limits.

  1. Pull-ups: Improve upper body and grip strength
  2. Push-ups: Enhance chest and tricep endurance
  3. Sit-ups: Strengthen core stability
  4. Squats: Build power in the lower body

Muscular endurance isn’t just about lasting longer—it’s about maintaining quality and power with each rep.

Boat Interior Design woman in gym taking selfie after finishing the barbara crossfit workout
by Pinterest

Benchmarking Progress and Ability

CrossFit thrives on measuring my ability, and Barbara is the perfect benchmark workout for that. Not only do I track my time improvements, but I also get a clear sense of how my form holds up under fatigue. Every time I revisit this challenge, I’m effectively benchmarking my fitness level, giving me tangible goals to chase and conquer.

  • Benchmark Goals: Identify time improvements and form consistency.
  • Fitness Level: Get a holistic view of my current fitness abilities.

The beauty of a benchmark WOD like the Barbara CrossFit Workout is in its simplicity and its complexity—it’s straightforward enough to follow, yet complex enough to test the edges of my capacity. Each round is a new chance to beat my best, and that’s a challenge I’m always excited to take on!

Free PDF Workout Plans For You.

Are you in need of motivation? Here are some powerful workout plans with PDF downloads you can choose from:
Pamela Reif Workout Plan
30 Day Peloton Workout Plan
Beginner Calisthenics Workout Plan
Andy Galpin Workout Plan

Performing the Different Movements

I’m thrilled to guide you through the core movements of the Barbara CrossFit Workout, where precision meets endurance! Maintaining proper form is crucial, not only to maximize the workout’s benefits but also to reduce the risk of injury, especially for beginners.

Proper Form for Squats and Pull-ups

Air Squats:

  • Stance: Feet should be shoulder-width apart with toes slightly turned out.
  • Movement: Keeping my chest up and core tight, I lower myself down as if sitting back into a chair, ensuring my thighs are parallel to the ground. Then I press through my heels to return to standing.


  • Grip: Hands are placed just wider than shoulder-width on the pull-up bar with palms facing away from me.
  • Movement: I engage my core and lats, then pull myself up until my chin is above the bar, aiming for full range of motion. Lowering back down with control, I make sure to fully extend my arms before initiating the next pull-up.

Mastering Push-ups and Sit-ups


  • Grip: Hands are placed just wider than shoulder-width on the pull-up bar with palms facing away from me.
  • Movement: Elbows track back as I lower my chest toward the floor, maintaining a tight core, and then push back up to the starting position.


  • Technique: I start by lying on my back, knees bent, and feet anchored. My lower back remains in contact with the ground as I sit all the way up and slightly forward, touching my toes.

Beginners should be particularly mindful of these techniques to build a strong foundation and prevent injury. Mastery of these movements leads to greater performance and enjoyment of the workout. Let’s keep the energy high and form sharp!

Boat Interior Design girl with barbell performing squats in gym
by Pinterest

Scaling Options

The beauty of the Barbara CrossFit workout is that it’s incredibly versatile for athletes of all levels. Whether I’m new to fitness or a seasoned competitor, I can adjust each exercise to match my current skill level. Let me walk you through how I can customize this workout for different fitness stages!

Beginner Modifications

As a beginner, my focus is on learning the movements and building endurance in the Barbara CrossFit Workout. There’s no need to rush; I aim for consistent, proper form.

  • Pull-ups: I start with ring rows or banded pull-ups to build upper body strength without the intimidation of the bar.
  • Push-ups: Doing knee push-ups or incline push-ups against a box helps me progress towards full movement.
  • Sit-ups: If a full sit-up is too much, plank holds for time and can help me build core strength.
  • Squats: Squatting to a box ensures I get the full range of motion at a comfortable depth.

Intermediate Adaptations

Now that I’m at an intermediate level, I work on increasing my workout intensity while maintaining good form.

  • Pull-ups: I might try jumping pull-ups, which demand slightly more from me than ring rows.
  • Push-ups: If regular push-ups are within my reach, I can increase the number of repetitions to challenge myself.
  • Sit-ups: Regular sit-ups with an ab mat can be my go-to, ensuring lower back support.
  • Squats: Full-air squats with a focus on speed or adding a lightweight, like a medicine ball, can up the ante.

Advanced Scaling for Elite Athletes

As an elite athlete, I find creative ways to increase the workout’s difficulty and test my limits.

  • Pull-ups: Adding a weight vest or attempting strict muscle-ups can significantly challenge my upper body.
  • Push-ups: Elevating my feet on a box or wearing a weight vest makes each rep more punishing.
  • Sit-ups: For an extra burn, I hold a weight plate across my chest or perform GHD (Glute-Ham Developer) sit-ups.
  • Squats: Pistol squats or weighted air squats provide a formidable test of my balance and strength.

By tailoring the Barbara CrossFit workout to my current skill level, I ensure continuous progress and keep my training both safe and effective. Let’s embrace where I am on my fitness journey and scale accordingly!

Boat Interior Design guy doing pull ups outside training for crossfit benchmark workouts
by Pinterest

My Experience with the Barbara CrossFit Workout

During my journey with CrossFit, the workout Barbara has been a notable milestone. Initially intimidated by the daunting sets, my coach eased me in, focusing on consistent form over speed. But as the weeks progressed, I challenged myself to notch up the intensity.

Strategy played a key role in navigating through the five rigorous rounds. I learned to pace myself, starting strong but saving enough energy to maintain a steady flow through the pull-ups, push-ups, sit-ups, and air squats. Balancing between going unbroken on easier sets and breaking up the tougher pull-ups and push-ups into manageable chunks was crucial.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the Barbara CrossFit workout:

  • Pull-ups: Starting with a set of 20, ensuring my grip was firm and movements fluid.
  • Push-ups: 30 repetitions, focusing on keeping my body in a straight line.
  • Sit-ups: These 40 reps were my breather, using good form to maximize efficiency.
  • Air Squats: Ending the round with 50 squats, I aimed for depth and consistent pacing.

Each round ended with a crucial three-minute rest, which was a lifesaver. Those short breaks allowed me to assess my strategy, catch my breath, and steel myself for the next cycle.

The satisfaction of completing the Barbara CrossFit workout fueled my excitement for CrossFit even more. Tackling each set taught me resilience and the valuable lesson that with the right support system and strategies, I could surmount even the toughest of challenges. Now it is your turn to try the Barbara CrossFit workout yourself.

Frequently Asked Questions about Barbara CrossFit Workout

How long should Barbara take?

In CrossFit, “for time” means completing a prescribed workout as quickly as possible. It’s a measure of speed and endurance, challenging athletes to finish the Barbara CrossFit workout or any other set routine in the shortest time they can manage.

What is a CrossFit Cindy?

CrossFit Cindy is a popular workout consisting of a 20-minute AMRAP (As Many Rounds As Possible) of 5 pull-ups, 10 push-ups, and 15 squats. Like the Barbara CrossFit workout, it tests endurance and strength.

What is the meaning of CrossFit?

CrossFit is a high-intensity fitness program incorporating elements from several sports and types of exercise. It focuses on strength and conditioning, with workouts like the Barbara CrossFit workout challenging participants with varied, functional movements performed at high intensity.

Why do people criticize CrossFit?

People criticize CrossFit for its high-intensity nature, which can lead to injury if not performed with proper form or without adequate preparation. Critics also point to its competitive atmosphere, which may push some individuals beyond their limits unsafely.

Is CrossFit better than gym?

Whether CrossFit is better than a traditional gym depends on personal fitness goals and preferences. CrossFit offers structured, high-intensity workouts like Barbara CrossFit workout in a community setting, while gyms provide more flexibility with equipment and workouts.

Did you like the Barbara CrossFit workout? Tell me in the comments. Make sure to read about my favorite CrossFit Track Workouts and Lower Body CrossFit Workouts as well.

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