Farmer’s Walk Complex for Conditioning

In the last post, “Training Day: High Rep Pulling”, I mentioned the Farmer’s Walk Complex as a metabolic finisher at the end of my training session. We have resorted to the Farmer’s Walk Complex to accompany some of my upper body workouts because of it’s friendly nature on my back. Not to mention it’s effectivness when it comes to a strength oriented, conditioning finisher.

The Farmer’s Walks have been a long time event in many of the Strongmen competitions. They usually entail a tremendous amount of weight and various distances traveled. For more about the traditional Farmer’s Walks, check out this post on titled, Farmer’s Walk by Corey St. Clair.

In today’s version, you’ll notice the weight is significantly lighter than a traditional Farmer’s Walk and a moderate rep range is completed for the exercises. The reason behind is that we’re not trying to gain strength from it, but rather complete a longer duration of activity. I chose a weight that is challenging, but also ensures I can get through the entire complex… several rounds over. ;)   This Farmer’s Walk Complex is completed for a metabolic response.  

As you will see in the video below, the end points are about 25 yards apart. I complete my exercises at one end, carry the dumbbells up and back (either in a shoulder or hip carry) for a total of 50 yards and continue all the way through the exercises before stopping.

The entire Farmer Walk Complex takes roughly 3 minutes to complete, rest for 1 minute and repeat 3-5 rounds.

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You can get very creative with the Farmer’s Walk Complex. You may include any variation of exercise choices including all upper body movements, all lower body movements, unilateral movements, bilateral movements and so the list goes on. Your only limitation is your imagination. For more ideas on Farmer’s Walk Complexes, check out Nick’s blog post here and for the ins and outs as to why we use Farmer Walks and program design specifics, check out Nick’s Farmer’s Walks for Fat Loss article on T-Nation here.

16 Comments on "Farmer’s Walk Complex for Conditioning"

  1. MissMoxx says:

    Oooh…I love it!

  2. Kevin Neeld says:

    I threw up once while watching you do this circuit, then twice after watching the circuit on Nick’s site. You guys are sick. I love it.

    • allimckee says:

      Haha, Kevin – Good to see you on here! Nick and I were just saying it would be nice to see you soon. Hope your training is going well! Stop by soon.. we have tires to play with.. sure to give you that “throw up” sensation too :)

  3. gene sedita says:

    Me too, folks. As Kevin N. says, I love to throw up with these complexes. When I saw Alli’s post last week and she mentioned Farmer’s Walk Complexes I said, just like Brigham Young, This Is It. Gym on Saturday and watch out for man carrying. I gotta tear off another 5 lbs or so and these complexes from Alli and Coach Nick are just what the doctor ordered. lol. Great stuff as always. Thanks

  4. Angel says:

    I’ve never done farmer walks so I did your routine today. it’s only been 6 hour since my workout and my booty and traps are ALREADY calling my name.

    Thanks, Alli! You’re the best.

    • allimckee says:

      You are welcome Angel!! Thanks for the feedback, always glad to hear :)

      We also do farmer’s walks alone (without the exercises) for 50 – 75 yards at a time.. rest and repeat.. talk about a killer forearm pump.. the grip will be the first to go (limiting factor) but it’s great upper body conditioning as well! Of course you’d go heavier than if you’re completing exercises like in the Farmers Walk Complex :)

      Happy Training!

  5. Alexandra says:

    I did this complex today and oh does it catch up to you. I did 5 rounds took about 15 minutes and I was spent after it. I had to do 25 minutes of yoga after just to calm my nervous system. I loved it though! Today was an off day so I did it on its own and it was still tough. I can’t imagine tacking it on to the end of a training session. I’m sure it wil leave me wiped out for a couple days.

    Thanks for sharing. I’m off to check out Nick’s articles.

    • allimckee says:

      Hey Alexandra,

      Awesome!! 5 rounds is impressive and yes, it’s enough for a full workout at times. When Nick and I travel and we’re limited with time and gym equipment, sometimes we’ll just hit the gym and run through several rounds of a dumbbell complex.

      Thanks for interacting on the blog and for your feedback! Have a great day!


  6. bstone says:

    Tried this workout today. AWESOME! No doubt a major fatburner. How often would you recommend doing this type of workout?

    • allimckee says:

      Hi Bstone,

      Thank you for your feedback :) It depends on your training program, however, I would suggest integrating the farmers walk complex into your program 2 times per week, but can be done up to 4 times per week.

      Again, there are so many ways to change the exercise design and intensity. The possibilities are many and that’s great for all ranges of goals and program design :)

      Best of luck!

  7. Bea says:

    Hey I was trying to check out the video on the farmers walk , but it says that EMI has blocked it? Due to the country. I am in the US.. Just though that you might want to know.

    • allimckee says:

      Hmmmm, bummer. I just checked that out and it’s probably because of some music that was playing in the background. Sorry about that, it was an older video. I’ll have to get some new ones up soon. Thanks for letting me know.

  8. Vid is blocked Ali. Tried viewing through YouTube and it is still not letting us view it. Copyright maybe?

    • allimckee says:

      Ahh, yeah, I think there was a song playing in the background and they took down the video. I believe this happened a little while back. Thanks for the heads up, Rob and for checking out my blog. I hope you are doing well!

  9. John cox says:

    Well put.
    I (145lbs) offload with 30lbs in one hand and 15 in the other. When 1 hand gets fatigued I switch hands and keep up the walk. I live near trails and walk about 2 miles. This training has been great for my handball game!

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