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Farmers Walk: Conditioning or Strength Gain


Is there a routine for progressive increase of farmers walk in the 531 books?

Do you guys use farmers walks for strength/mass gain or conditioning? Also how often do you increase the weight.

I use them in two ways -

  1. To walk 30meters. I repeat this till I have done 1/2 a mile. With as heavy weight as I can.
  2. To walk 1mile. Whilst trying to keep the number of times i put it down to minimum.

@Jim_Wendler I would be very grateful for your opinion. I have read somewhere you do not like them for conditioning is that right?

I am an older guy at 62 and follow Jim’s 2x2x2. I do Farmers Walks at the end of each lifting day mainly for strength , plus I like them. I do a weight that challenges me for 3 sets at 40 to 50 yards I call it a day.

Not quite:

“If you want to perform the Farmer Walk exercise heavy, don’t turn it into a conditioning movement. This is beyond idiotic.”

My favourite way to do farmers is to set a time limit for a distance and keep adding weight until you can’t hit the time limit…

So say 30m for 9 seconds. Start at 0.75 - 0.9 x bodyweight per hand and add weight until you can’t hit the time and distance.

The following week start at 5% heavier and try end 5% heavier.

If you prefer you can adjust your time/distance so you may not go heavier but instead add 5m or knock off 1 second.

You may add 10% instead of 5% but knock off 5m or add 1 second (be careful with this)

But there’s lots of options. You could probably even take one of the prowler protocols and do it for farmers

Thank you - thats helpful.

In terms of weight used. Do you guys ensure back is straight. We use them outdoors in my gym and have to go up s a set of 9 steep stairs, where I feel I lean forward. In terms of technique I’m assuming back needs to be straight and chest up?

Also the handles swing a little. We have mini farmers walk handles. You can google them to see what they look like - mirafit is the brand. So they are not the standard ones. Any experience of using these?