The Meteoric Rise of Lauren Weeks 3 Time Hyrox Women's World Champion
In the aftermath of the 2022 HYROX World Championships, while Kris Rugloski claimed the top spot, it was Lauren Weeks that truly captured the attention of many.
An 8-month pregnant Lauren not only participated but led the majority of the first run, eventually finishing 9th among 14 Elite women.
Many wondered if Lauren, now a new mom, could contend with the Elites.
Squashing all doubts, she seized her third HYROX World Championship, outpacing HYROX newcomer Meg Jacoby. With a stellar track record, including being a Three Time World Champion, Lauren's dominance in HYROX history is unparalleled.
A Glimpse into Lauren's Training Regime
The Hybrid Letter’s interview with Lauren provided insights into her training methods. Emphasizing movement and a positive mentality, Lauren revealed her inclination towards low-intensity training. Contrary to the popular 80/20 approach, she believes her training might be even more skewed towards low-intensity exercises. This ensures that she never feels too stressed about her upcoming workouts.
Lauren also gave some tactical advice for HYROX races. She noted that while she starts with an aggressive pace, it might not be the best for everyone. Lauren also stressed the importance of being strategic with the sleds and machinery workouts to avoid physical exhaustion.
Her weekly training routine consists of around 20 hours of workouts, with a majority spent on running, covering over 50 miles.
Strategies Behind Lauren’s Success
Running Strategy: Despite her initial lack of a running background, Lauren's performance in the recent championships showcased her progress. Her run times, which contributed to 54% of her total race time, have improved dramatically since the 2021 World Championships.
Station Work: Lauren's approach to station work has been tactical. Her performance in the 2023 European Championships revealed a conscious effort to optimize her runs by taking a more measured approach on the stations. Notably, her strategy on the farmer’s carry station shifted within the season, going from a time of 2:17 in Maastricht to a winning time in Manchester.
These are some of the strategies behind Lauren’s success.
- Periodization and Progressive Overload:
- Definition: Periodization involves structuring training into specific blocks, each with a particular focus. Progressive overload is the gradual increase of stress placed upon the body during exercise.
- How Lauren Uses It: Lauren might cycle through endurance, hypertrophy (muscle growth), and strength phases, ensuring that she's always building and not plateauing. By progressively adding more weight, repetitions, or sets, she ensures continuous improvement.
- Functional and Compound Movements:
- Definition: These are exercises that engage multiple muscle groups and mimic natural movements, as opposed to isolated exercises that target a single muscle.
- How Lauren Uses It: Focusing on compound movements like squats, deadlifts, and overhead presses, Lauren maximizes muscle engagement, leading to improved strength and muscle mass. These movements also improve coordination and athletic performance.
- High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT):
- Definition: HIIT involves short bursts of intense exercise followed by low-intensity recovery periods.
- How Lauren Uses It: Lauren might use the Air Bike for intense 30-second sprints followed by 30 seconds of rest. This approach boosts her cardiovascular fitness while also optimizing fat burning.
- Active Recovery and Mobility:
- Definition: Active recovery means engaging in low-intensity exercise to help muscles recover, while mobility exercises improve joint function and range of motion.
- How Lauren Uses It: Instead of completely resting on off days, Lauren might engage in light yoga, stretching, or a slow-paced bike ride. This helps with muscle recovery, reduces injury risk, and ensures she’s always staying active.
- Mindset and Mental Toughness:
- Definition: This refers to an athlete's resilience, focus, and ability to push through challenges.
- How Lauren Uses It: Behind all the physical training, Lauren’s mental fortitude cannot be overlooked. Whether it's her determination to compete while 8 months pregnant, pushing through the last set or staying motivated on off days, her mental strength is as developed as her physical prowess.
Rumor has it that Lauren might make an appearance at the first American HYROX race in New York on June 10, 2023. Only time will tell if she continues to break records and redefine HYROX history.
From Obscurity to Stardom
The Spartan Games introduced many to Lauren, where she competed with elite athletes from diverse disciplines. With minimal media attention during the games, her third-place finish was surprising to many. But it was her victory in the HYROX World Championship of Fitness 2020 that truly marked her arrival.
Lauren's journey, from her initial days in CrossFit to becoming a global sensation, is a testament to her dedication, resilience, and talent.
Train like Lauren Weeks
For those inspired by Lauren's remarkable athleticism, emulating her training regimen is a key. And while the dedication and discipline are purely intrinsic, the equipment is a tangible component we can delve into. Let’s take a closer look at some of the essential training equipment to supercharge your sessions..
- Better Body Power Rack
- Functionality: The power rack, also known as a squat rack, is pivotal for weightlifting exercises. It provides safety and stability, especially for heavy lifting, allowing users to push their limits.
- Features: Most power racks come with adjustable J-hooks to accommodate various exercises and heights. They often have pull-up bars and additional attachments available, from dip bars to cable pulleys.
- Benefit to training like Lauren: Given the intense strength training routines needed for Hyrox, the power rack ensures you can train safely, even when pushing for those max weights.
- Better Body Hex Dumbbells
- Functionality: Hex dumbbells, characterized by their hexagonal shape, provide a stable base, ensuring they don't roll away when placed on the ground. They're versatile and can be used for a range of exercises.
- Features: Made of cast iron with a neoprene or rubber coating, hex dumbbells are durable and comfortable to grip. The hexagonal design also makes them ideal for exercises like renegade rows or dumbbell push-ups.
- Benefit to training like Lauren: Use these for varied strength and conditioning exercises. Their design and functionality allow you to seamlessly integrate them into circuit workouts.
- Better Body Air Bike
- Functionality: Air bikes, with their fan resistance, offer an intense full-body workout. The harder you pedal, the greater the resistance, making it an effective tool for HIIT and endurance training.
- Features: These bikes usually come with movable handlebars, engaging both the upper and lower body. Modern air bikes feature digital displays that show metrics like calories burned, speed, and distance.
- Benefit to training like Lauren: As a part of a cardio regimen, the air bike delivers both high-intensity bursts and steady-state cardio, helping you maintain and improve your cardiovascular endurance.
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