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gizmoflak
USA Fan
Member since May 2007
11304 posts

Villain Challenge Training
In case you're not familiar with the Villain Challenges, it is a set of strength & conditioning benchmarks put together by the creators of the Greyskull LP program. And they are for the most part really difficult for the average person.

It was originally only 5 benchmarks and then was expanded to 20, and further expanded beyond that.

Here is an e-book by the creators of the VC that explains how to do the exercises and train for the 20 benchmarks: LINK

I enjoy attempting the VCs because it gives me a variety of exercises to train for other than the standard triumvirate of bench/squat/deadlift. Also, I think it promotes being a well-rounded athlete with a combination of endurance, strength, and power instead of just focusing on bodybuilding lifts or bodyweight movements.


#1 - 100 burpees in 5m
#2 - 50 squats with your bodyweight on the barbell
#3 - 100 pushups in 2m
#4 - run 5 miles in 60m with a 45-lb rucksack
#5 - 18 chinups with 25 lbs added
#6 - 5 shoulder presses with your bodyweight on the barbell
#7 - run 5:30 mile
#8 - 500 air squats
#9 - 100 situps in 2m
#10 - hold L-sit for 3m
#11 - 50 pushups with 45 lbs on back and 12" incline
#12 - 7 deadlifts with 2x bodyweight on barbell
#13 - 200 Z-presses in 10m with unloaded barbell
#14 - 100 kettebell snatches (53 lbs)
#15 - run 5 miles in 37:37
#16 - 60 dips
#17 - 15 overhead squat with bodyweight on barbell
#18 - run 400m in 60s
#19 - 15 bench press with bodyweight on barbell
#20 - walk half a mile with 1.5x bodyweight on your back


I've re-ordered these exercises into three groups to better organize them:

Group A
#1 (A1) - 100 burpees in 5m
#3 (A2) - 100 pushups in 2m
#7 (A3) - run 5:30 mile
#8 (A4) - 500 air squats
#9 (A5) - 100 situps in 2m
#15 (A6) - run 5 miles in 37:37
#18 (A7) - run 400m in 60s

Group B
#4 (B1) - run 5 miles in 60m with a 45-lb rucksack
#5 (B2) - 18 chinups with 25 lbs added
#10 (B3) - hold L-sit for 3m
#11 (B4) - 50 pushups with 45 lbs on back and 12" incline
#13 (B5) - 200 Z-presses in 10m with unloaded barbell
#14 (B6) - 100 kettebell snatches (53 lbs)
#16 (B7) - 60 dips

Group C
#2 (C1) - 50 squats with your bodyweight on the barbell
#6 (C2) - 5 shoulder presses with your bodyweight on the barbell
#12 (C3) - 7 deadlifts with 2x bodyweight on barbell
#17 (C4) - 15 overhead squat with bodyweight on barbell
#19 (C5) - 15 bench press with bodyweight on barbell
#20 (C6) - walk half a mile with 1.5x bodyweight on your back


The Group A exercises can be done with no equipment whatsoever, and you can probably attempt these benchmarks the most often. A2, A4, and A5 can be tried most days of the week. And depending on whether you like sprints, medium-distance, or long-distance runs, you can do A3, A6, or A7 about 3-5 days/week without taxing your body too hard.

The Group B exercises can be done with a minimal amount of equipment, such as parallel bars, a kettlebell, and a few weight plates -- stuff you may have at your house.

The Group C exercises require a loaded barbell. From a strength standpoint, these are the most difficult exercises and cannot be attempted nearly as frequently as the Group A and B ones.



Currently, I am doing a 3-day workout split, and on the 4th day I devote it to attempting VCs -- typically 4-6 of them. However, you could design an entire training plan around just these 20 exercises, and you can attack them in a variety of ways, such as doing bona fide attempts periodically, or doing sub-maximal sets on a regular basis.

For Group C training, you could do maximal loads and work your way up to the required number of reps. Or you could to the required number of reps at submaximal loads and incrementally increase the weight over time. Or you can do sets of sub-maximal loads and reps and gradually increase the loads and reps over time. Or a combination of all of the above.

There are countless ways you could go about training for these benchmarks.


So far, I've only successfully completed B5 (Z-presses), and I think the next will be A2 -- I'm currently at 84 pushups in 2m. By this time next year, I'm hoping to complete most of the Group A and B exercises. The running and lower body exercises will be the most difficult for me just because I'm carrying too many extra pounds at the moment...





OysterPoBoy
USA Fan
City of St. George
Member since Jul 2013
25045 posts

re: Villain Challenge Training
quote:

#4 - run 5 miles in 60m with a 45-lb rucksack


I feel like that’s the only one I have a legitimate shot at but it would suck and I’d have to wait until winter.


lsu777
LSU Fan
westlake
Member since Jan 2004
19027 posts

re: Villain Challenge Training
The greyskull challenges are awesome and are great goals. Just remember it's not all about completing the challenge, it's the process that goes in to even getting close and the changes that type of training ellicits both strength and physique wise.


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northshorebamaman
US Army Fan
PNW
Member since Jul 2009
33333 posts

re: Villain Challenge Training
quote:

#4 - run 5 miles in 60m with a 45-lb rucksack
I had the opposite reaction. That's the one that made me say "frick all that".


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10
Oilfieldbiology
LSU Fan
Member since Nov 2016
24774 posts

re: Villain Challenge Training
quote:

18 (A7) - run 400m in 60s


If you’re in decent shape and run routinely but don’t run super fast miles or never sprint, you will throw up after attempting this. This distance is so f’ing hard. It’s too short for long runs but really too far for sprints. So in order to run it properly you have to sprint.


gizmoflak
USA Fan
Member since May 2007
11304 posts

re: Villain Challenge Training
I half-heartedly attempted a 1/4 mile run today and realized I have a loooong way to go to do it 1m.

Not running at all in the last 10 years isn't exactly helping my cause


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sp22
LSU Fan
Member since Jan 2019
464 posts

re: Villain Challenge Training
Got C3 and C5, not sure I’m all that close to any others lol


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