Doing a CrossFit WOD On the Go

By Mike Orth | October 27, 2015
The holiday season is fast approaching and many people are going to travel. If you’re worried about getting your CrossFit WOD on, don’t. We’ve got you covered.

With numerous CrossFit locations around the country, you can easily drop-in to one and get sweaty. Most affiliates charge to drop-in, but one near my in-laws doesn’t so it would be best to reach out to CrossFit gyms and let them know you will be in the area and find out the specifics of rates. Also, many locations offer a weekly pass if you are going to be in a certain area for an extended time.

But, sometimes it can be hard to get away even for a little while, especially for hosts. If there isn’t a CrossFit location close to your destination or if you just aren’t able to slip out, a great alternative to drop-ins are travel WODs.

A CrossFit WOD…On the Road?

Travel WODs are very similar to ordinary CrossFit WODs at your local box. However, many travel WODs are comprised strictly of body weight movements with no additional equipment necessary. CrossFitters that travel a lot for business use these types of workouts because you can do them in your hotel room, jump in the shower and be off to meet a client or close a business deal quickly.

Push ups, sit ups and squats are the usual trio of body weight movements that can be done virtually anywhere. They are easy to perform in a tight area and can be completed successfully without disturbing neighbors or guests. However, these aren’t the only things you can do. Burpees, hand stands, hand stand push ups, chair dips, lunges and planks are other great movements you can do indoors.

Travel workout formats can be EMOM, AMRAP, max reps or rounds for time. Changing the format can completely change the workout.

For example:
3 minute max push ups, 1 minute break, 3 minutes max sit ups, 1 minute break, 3 minute max squats.
will feel different than…

10 Rounds for time: 10 push-ups, 10 sit ups, 10 squats.

How and what you choose is completely up to you. If you find one that you generally enjoy, each time you travel you now have a benchmark and can aim for a new PR. There are a ton of travel WODs and websites devoted specifically to them for those who need ideas.

One word of advice — don’t get overwhelmed. With thousands of different travel WODs, it can seem daunting. If you find a list of 150, just pick a random number and go for it. If you are going to be gone for an extended period of time try out a few different travel WODs with different exercises to keep you sharp.



Really the only equipment you need for travel WODs are your standard workout clothes, perhaps a pair of workout-appropriate shoes — that’s it. A speed rope is easily packed, so you could sneak that into a bag, and some like to tote an AbMat, but they really aren’t necessary.

Pretty much any body weight exercise can be performed without anything in a hotel room. But with some creativity, you can also incorporate elements of the room around you into your workout. For example, hand stand push ups and wall sits can be accomplished on a spare section of wall. A chair can be used for tricep dips or if you place you feet on the chair and perform push ups with your feet elevated.


Outside the Room

Outside of your hotel or guest room, you can tailor your workout based on your time and what you have available. The only limit is your imagination and your surroundings. If you are feeling adventurous and Rocky IV inspired you, then some outdoor training is a great idea. Box jumps on cement planters, pull ups on tree limbs and dips on a park bench are just some ideas.

Think Outside the Box

If you are heading to a colder climate and have the opportunity to chop or move firewood, you could grab decent-sized logs by their ends and performing a farmer carry — great for grip strength — or see how many individual pieces you can stack neatly near the house in 10 minutes. Another idea would be to grab a healthy-sized object and do front squats, presses, etc. A 5-gallon bucket filled with objects or a couple of 1-gallon paint cans filled with paint — or water, sand, rocks — can be used for a weighted carry along with other movements; do an exercise, then walk with weight, drop and repeat.

You could also utilize the terrain to your advantage. If you are staying near the ocean, try running, doing knee-high jumps, or performing burpees in the sand. If you are in a mountainous area or are near a steep driveway, try carrying something heavy up the hill or just try to run up as fast as possible; do an exercise at the top, carefully walk down, and repeat several times.

If there is a running trail or park near you, often times you will find fitness stations where you can perform a variety of exercises. Some even have pull up bars or monkey bars for you to utilize. If the weather is nice, all the better.

Some of my favorite travel WOD’s you can use on your next trip are

  • 10 Rounds for Time: 5/10/15 Push ups, sit ups, air squats.
  •  10 Min. AMRAP. Shuttle runs 25/50m and 10 burpees.
  • 5 Rounds. 1 minute plank, 1 minute max push ups, 1 minute rest. (Move from your forearms to your hands for push ups without touching your knees to the ground)
  • 5 Rounds. 1 minute plank, 1 minute L-sit, 1 minute rest. (Optional: add a 1 minute wall sit after the L-sit)
  • 3 Rounds for Time. 20 squats, 20 burpees, 20 Push-Ups.
Please don’t let the idea of a travel WOD limit you from using it at home. You can easily incorporate one into a tight morning at home before taking the kids to school or between getting home from work and a night on the town.

There you have it! A brief introduction to a CrossFit WOD that can be done on the go. As always…be safe, have fun and get sweaty!

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