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What’s a good Fran (CrossFit) time?


January 9, 2017

Fran is a workout in CrossFit in which you do the following for time.

  • 21 Barbell Thrusters
  • 21 Pull-ups
  • 15 Barbell Thrusters
  • 15 Pull-ups
  • 9 Barbell Thrusters
  • 9 Pull-Ups

Men have to do 95 lb thrusters, while women have to do 65 lb thrusters. As a reminder, this is a thruster:

What’s an average time for Fran? I’ve collected data on 5,376 CrossFit Open athletes, so we can answer this question.

Of the 5,376 athletes, 714 men self-reported their best Fran time, and 198 women reported their best Fran time.

For men, the mean Fran time was 4:48, while the median time was 4:21. The 75th percentile time was 3:24, and the 25th percentile time was 5:42. Here is the full distribution of times:

For women, the mean Fran time was 5:53, while the median time was 5:26. The 75th percentile time was 4:09, and the 25th percentile time was 7:13. Here is the full distribution of times:

Furthermore, you can predict how fast you can complete Fran by knowing the following:

  • How much you can max clean and jerk
  • How many pull-ups you can do in a row (i.e., max pull-ups)
  • Your weight

The predictive model (for men) is:

Fran-time(seconds) = e^( 6.7610 – 0.0054*MaxC&J(lbs) – 0.0106*MaxPullups + 0.0025*BodyWeight(lbs) )

For example, if you weighed 180 lbs, your max clean and jerk is 200 lbs, and you can do 20 pull-ups in a row, we’d predict you can do Fran in 371 seconds, or 6:11 [e^(6.7610 – 0.0054*200 – 0.0106*20 + 0.0025*180)].

Further interpreting this model:

  • For every 1 extra lb you increase your max clean and jerk, you improve your Fran time by 0.54%
  • For every 1 extra pull-up you can do in a row, you improve your Fran time by 1.06%.
  • For every 1 lb you decrease your body weight, you improve your Fran time by 0.25%.

The R-Square value is .676, meaning these three variables account for 67% of the variability in Fran times.

If you wanted to improve your Fran time, the model shows that your biggest improvements in time would likely come from improving your ability to do many pull-ups in a row, then increase your max clean and jerk, then drop your weight.

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