Karen CrossFit Workout 2024 (Powerful Tips & Tricks For You)

Diving straight into the heart of CrossFit’s high-intensity training, I can’t help but get pumped up about the Karen CrossFit workout. Now, this isn’t just your average fitness challenge; it’s one of the notorious “Girl” benchmark workouts designed to test and improve your athletic capabilities.

The “Karen” is wonderfully simplistic yet brutally challenging, comprised solely of 150 wall ball shots. That’s right, 150 chances to squat, thrust, and hurl a medicine ball to a target situated 10 feet above the ground for men and 9 feet for women.

all you need to know about karen crossfit benchmark workout in one infographic including structure and goal times of the wod

I approach “Karen” with a solid strategy to avoid burnout. Breaking the reps into manageable sets or pacing myself so I don’t gas out within the first 50 throws are key tactics. The workout fundamentally calls for endurance, mental tenacity, and a well-thought-out approach to keep those wall balls flying even as my muscles scream for respite. It’s a battle between me and the medicine ball, and let me tell you, I’m in it to win it!

Step-By-Step Workout Structure

When I tackle the Karen Workout, it’s me against the clock—the goal is to complete the workout as fast as possible. Here’s how I break down this Workout of the Day (WOD):

Warm-Up: I always start with a good warm-up focusing on my squat mobility, core activation, and getting my heart rate up. This isn’t just any warm-up; I’m prepping my body for intensity and precision.

The Workout:

  • Reps: The magic number is 150 wall ball shots.
  • Weight: The prescribed weight (Rx) for the medicine ball is 20 pounds for men and 14 pounds for women.
  • Form Matters: Each rep includes a full squat and a powerful thrust upward to launch the ball to a target around 9-10 feet high. My form is crucial here; I keep my core tight and power through my legs.

Pacing: As tempting as it is to go full throttle from the start, I pace myself. My aim is to maintain large sets of reps with strategic rest. Remember, I tell myself, it’s not just a sprint; it’s also about endurance.

Breath and Technique: Breathing rhythmically helps me keep my pace steady and maintain my form. It’s all about that push from the legs and the fluid motion. Focus on the breath, and the power will follow.


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Sticking to my plan ensures I get through this intense burst of a workout efficiently, raising my athletic performance and forging some serious mental toughness. It’s the ultimate test of my power, squat endurance, and will to push through. Bring it on, Karen!

Do you want to level up or down? Here are your options:

Equipment For The Karen Crossfit Workout

When I tackle the Karen CrossFit workout, I make sure to have the right equipment on hand. Believe me, it amps up the challenge and fun!

  • Medicine Ball: The star of the show is my trusty medicine ball. We’re talking about choosing the right weight here—20 pounds for men and 14 pounds for women.

Here’s a quick rundown of what I gear up with:

Medicine BallA weighted ball, 20/14 lb based on CrossFit standards.
Wall TargetA spot on the wall or a specific target at 10/9 ft high.
Equipment for the Karen CrossFit Workout

Doing 150 wall balls with the correct weight really tests my limits. I toss the ball against a wall target, and the target must be at the right height: that’s 10 feet for me and 9 feet if you are a woman. It’s exciting to see my progress and I always aim to hit the target with every throw. The wall? It’s got to be a tough one, ready to take a beating without scuffs or damage.

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

Benefits of the Karen CrossFit Workout

When I tackle the Karen CrossFit workout, I’m exhilarated by the powerful strength gains and how it bolsters my endurance. Tackling 150 wall ball shots, I push my fitness level upwards, engaging my legs, core, and upper body endurance in unison, ensuring a comprehensive training session.

My cardio capacity skyrockets as I maintain the intensity throughout the workout. With each throw, I feel my heart rate climbing, turning Karen into a high-energy, full-throttle workout. Each successive session sees my cardiovascular health rev, preparing me for any high-intensity challenges, even those at the CrossFit Games.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the gains Karen gifts me:

  • Strength: Powering through wall balls builds muscle across my lower body and upper back.
  • Cardio: The non-stop nature means my heart and lungs get an exceptional workout.
  • Endurance: Balancing intensity and pacing helps me go longer, making me resilient.

Whether I’m at the starting whistle of my CrossFit journey or gearing up for competition-level performance, this WOD is a vessel to elevate my fitness level. Each rep is a step towards a more formidable me. It’s not just about the muscle; it’s the breathless moments that translate into tenacity—both physical and mental. In the world of CrossFit, Karen WOD isn’t just a workout; it’s a benchmark for growth.

Boat Interior Design woman in crossfit gym performing wall balls as part of karen crossfit workout
by Pinterest

Performing The Different Movements

In tackling the iconic Karen CrossFit Workout, I’m stoked to break down the essential exercises that are fundamental to its effectiveness. Each movement targets specific muscle groups and requires a combination of skill, technique, and power, ensuring a comprehensive workout experience.

Wall Ball Shots

Wall ball shots are the centerpiece of the Karen Workout. Here’s how I master each rep:

  1. I start with the medicine ball at chest level, feet shoulder-width apart.
  2. I descend into a squat, keeping my weight in my heels.
  3. As I drive upward, I extend my legs fully and throw the ball upward to hit a target, typically around 9–10 feet high.
  4. While the ball is in the air, I get ready for the catch and go into the next squat.

Maintaining a rhythm with my breathing is crucial, and I do this by inhaling on the way down and exhaling as I power up.


While not part of the Karen CrossFit Workout, thrusters are a similar compound movement worth mastering. They combine a front squat with an overhead press. I maintain a full grip on the barbell and ensure my elbows stay up throughout the squat to protect my wrists. As I reach full extension with my legs, I use the momentum to press the barbell overhead.

Boat Interior Design girl on the beach doing thrusters to get fit for crossfit benchmark workout
by Pinterest

Scaling Options

I love that the Karen WOD can be customized for different fitness levels! Scaling is vital to keep the workout challenging yet achievable regardless of where you’re at on your fitness journey. Let me guide you through some of the modifications I use to make the celebrated ‘wall balls’ more accessible or demanding, depending on the day’s form.

For beginners, the weight of the wall ball is often the first thing I adjust. Reducing the load helps maintain proper form while still feeling the burn. It’s important to progress, but safety is key, so I tend to keep an eye on that as I ramp up my routine.

Intermediate athletes might play with the number of reps or the height of the target. I’ve found that doing fewer wall balls or aiming for a lower target can keep me moving and still provide that sense of accomplishment without overdoing it.

Here’s a quick layout of my scaling strategy:

  1. Weight Adjustment

    • Beginners: Lighter wall ball
    • Intermediates: Standard or slightly lighter than prescribed
  2. Repetitions

    • Beginners: Start with lower reps and gradually increase
    • Intermediates: Aim closer to prescribed rep count, but listen to my body
  3. Target Height

    • Beginners: Lower target height
    • Intermediates: As prescribed or slightly lower if needed

As someone mindful of injuries or specific fitness concerns, I have found that modifications are never a setback—they’re a smart way to progress. My mantra is to keep the intensity high but within the limits of what my body is comfortable with. Remember, scaling is a fantastic tool to track my progress and keep pushing my limits safely and effectively!

Boat Interior Design guy in gym after exhausting crossfit wod taking picture in the mirror
by Pinterest

My Experience With The Karen Crossfit Workout

When I first encountered the Karen CrossFit workout, it was quite the benchmark for my fitness journey.

What Worked for Me:

  1. Pacing: Essential. Without pacing, I found energy levels can crash.
  2. Form Focus: Maintaining proper form for each wall ball throw preserved my stamina and reduced the risk of injury.
  3. Breathing: I coordinated my breaths with each rep, inhaling on the downward movement, and exhaling on the throw.

The first time I tackled it, I underestimated its simplicity. Just 150 wall balls—but it tests every bit of your endurance. Early on, I aimed to break my sets into manageable chunks, and this strategy paid dividends through the workout.

Progress Chart:

Set RangeReps/SetNotes
1-325Solid start, in the zone
4-615Slowing down, staying focused
7+As many as I canPushed through the burn
My progress chart for the Karen CrossFit Workout

My aim was not just completion but efficient execution. With each round, I could feel my legs and core working overtime, and the sheer will to not pause kept me going even when my arms felt they might give out. It wasn’t just a physical grind; mentally, I was in a battle with my fatigue.


  • First Completion: A marker of my commitment.
  • Time Improvement: Shaved off minutes as I grew more proficient.
  • Elite Competitions: Participation became a reality as my times approached those of top athletes.

Incorporating the Karen CrossFit Workout into my rotation elevated not only my physical capability but also instilled a lesson in perseverance. It’s been an electrifying and humbling journey, honing both my body and willpower.

Frequently Asked Questions about Karen CrossFit Workout

How long should Karen take CrossFit?

The Karen CrossFit workout, involving 150 wall balls (20 lbs for men, 14 lbs for women), should ideally take between 6 to 12 minutes. It’s a test of endurance and mental toughness.

What is the world record for Karen CrossFit?

The world record for the Karen CrossFit workout is impressively under 6 minutes. This record showcases exceptional strength, stamina, and technique in completing 150 wall balls.

What is the time cap for Karen workout?

Many gyms set a time cap of around 12 minutes for the Karen CrossFit workout to ensure intensity remains high while allowing athletes of varying fitness levels to complete the challenge.

What is the workout with 150 wall balls?

The workout known for 150 wall balls is the Karen CrossFit workout. It’s a benchmark WOD that tests athletes’ power, endurance, and ability to maintain pace under fatigue.

Do wall balls burn fat?

Yes, wall balls are an effective exercise for burning fat. The Karen CrossFit workout, with its high volume of wall balls, combines cardiovascular and strength training, promoting high-calorie burn and fat loss.

Do wall balls build muscle?

Wall balls, integral to the Karen CrossFit workout, are excellent for building muscle. They engage the legs, glutes, core, and shoulders, providing a full-body workout that enhances muscular endurance and strength.

What is your Karen CrossFit Workout time? Tell me in the comments. And make sure to also try the Barbara WOD and the Mary Benchmark Workout.

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