When you start hearing “What’s your Fran time?” more than you hear “What’s your bench?”, it’ll be clear you’ve wandered far from Kansas and the yellow-bricked road and into the wonderful world of CrossFit. You’ll then start wondering, “Who the hell is Fran and why does she have a time?” – Will Lanier
Welcome to the first season of CrossFit 101. A blog series designed to help you navigate the rabbit hole that is CrossFit.
In CrossFit, there’s no shortage of confusing terms that can make any beginner’s head spin.
But it’s not just the beginners who have trouble. If you’re an intermediate with several months of experience, you’re probably familiar with this situation.
You’re in class, cruising through the warm-up, when all the sudden someone drops a CrossFit term you aren’t familiar with. They’re talking to you like it’s the most universally known term ever.
Not wanting to stop the conversation to point out that you have no clue what they’re talking about, you nod along until coach calls everyone in and the moment passes.
Fran is one of those terms.
So, what is Fran? And more importantly, why should you care?
A seemingly simple workout
Fran is a simple workout with some not-so-simple implications. We’ll dive into more of what I mean by that next. But first let’s look at the actual workout.
The thrusters are 95 lbs for men and 65 lbs for women.
So, what’s so special about Fran?
Fran is CrossFit’s version of the 100-yard dash. It’s the flagship short time domain workout in the sport of fitness.
But in a way that the 100-yard dash could never, Fran hurts.
Even the most savvy veterans will stop in their tracks when they see Fran up on the board for the workout of the day.
Why is Fran so scary? Why don’t people just go a little slower during the workout?
Why you have to send it during Fran
If you play enough golf, you get what’s called a handicap. It’s a number that gives quick, compact insight into just how good (or bad) your average score is.
When two avid golfers meet for the first time, it’s guaranteed they’ll both ask what the other’s handicap is.
In CrossFit, your Fran time is often used the same way a golfer uses a handicap.
It’s a time you could tell a random CrossFitter who you’ve never met, and they’d get quick, compact insight into your skill level.
What’s your Fran time?
It’s a time that tells another CrossFitter how fast you go, well you move, and much you’re willing to hurt.
And that’s why there’s no going slow in Fran.
In the sport of CrossFit, where most days are a “practice” — Fran is a Gameday.
So … what’s your Fran time?