Bodybuilding VS. Functional WODs? – Coach Milo

Ok ok, it’s a little clickbaity, haha but I want you to read this blog because I think it’s important to understand the differences between Isolation (bodybuilding Esq type training) and compound (functional type training) but if I called it that you would scroll…

A compound exercise is a multi-joint movement that works several muscles at one time – like a squat, which moves both your hip and knee joints and engages your core, glutes, quads, hamstrings and calf muscles. 
Isolation exercises target one specific muscle group – like a barbell curl working your biceps.

There’s a lot of debate about which is best, but here’s why you need both in your training. Both are good in their own right and you need to know how to use them and not pick a side.


If you’re a beginner, compound exercises help you build your foundation quicker by giving you more for the time and effort you put in. They help you lift heavier loads and build more strength overall. Let’s talk benefits:

1. They’ll save you time.
 Think about exercises like squats, clean and jerk, push-ups, and pull-ups – you could incorporate just two of those exercises into a workout and have a great full-body workout because you’re utilising the multiple joint movements. To hit all of those muscle groups one by one would take much longer.

2. They’re super effective. 
The more muscles you engage, the more kick back you are getting for your goals. Be it wanting more muscle mass, more strength or working on your speed! Think of a squat, where you’re got a heavy barbell on your back. You’re using your upper back and midline to stabilise yourself and you’re engaging your shoulders, legs, glutes and pretty much everything else in between to control that weight as you bring it down and up. So that compound movement increases your growth factor, allowing your body to really build up power and strength for your entire body.

3. They’ll increase your functional fitness.
 You’re doing compound movements every day: reaching up to get something off the top shelf, squatting down to try and take a ball away from Nova (maybe not a good idea.. 😛 ). Adding functional exercises to your training will help you move easier through life. Plus, getting all-over strong will help you lift more weight in isolation.


Isolation exercises still have an important part to play in a well-balanced regimen. So, why should you do isolation exercises as well?

1. They help target spots you might have missed. 
Some muscles need isolated exercises. For example, the bicep is used in a lot of pulling movements – think rows, rope climbs and pull-ups – but as a secondary or supporting muscle rather than the primary one. There isn’t a compound exercise that can really target the bicep on its own. Now I know the CrossFit die hards out there will be coming after me with pitchforks again but listen if you want to be able to build some strength to do those movements or maybe just bulletproof your body so you don’t fall apart after doing a million of them with really strong traps and really weak biceps. You are creating an imbalance. And you have small arms… awkward…

As an example when it could be super useful, is if you have a particular strength goal – say to complete 5 push ups or your first strict pull up – you can specifically train the muscle groups involved in that movement pattern.

2. They’ll keep you active all over.
 If injury strikes or your muscles need time to recover from a tough workout, isolation exercises allow you to work on individual muscles while avoiding those that are overworked or injured. Great for using that time effectively still to keep bettering yourself and work those weaknesses. If you are seriously injured as well then working one side can be super beneficial for limiting the atrophy in the smaller muscle which will save you in the long run!

3. They’re perfect for fixing imbalances.
 We’ve all got one – whether it’s poor stability with our glutes in a squat and relying on our back. Isolation training lets you zero in on a muscle and bring it up to speed.

As ever peeps let me know if you have any questions or if you are unsure about how to approach this method with your own training. Reach out and let’s talk.

Head Coach Milo (


A) (0-5min.)
1000m row *at 80-90% effort

Hit a heavy Snatch single

1000m Row *at 80-90% effort

Hit a heavy Power Clean single

B) Accessory of Choice for 10 Mins
1) Muscle Up Practice
2) Handstand Push Ups
3) Toes to bar
4) Midline work
2-4 Rounds of
10 Banded Deadbugs
20 Russian Twists


A) Posterior Superset! 5 Sets of:
Back Rack Lunge
10 Reps
(5 reps on each leg) Take your time and do not rush the movement
10 Stiff Leg Deadlifts
-Rest 1-2 Minutes between sets

B) 16min. EMOM:
Min. 1)
15/12 Cal Row/SKi
Min. 2) 20 Wall Balls 9/6kg
Min. 3) Max Effort Jumping Lunges (use a plate if easy!)
Min. 4) Rest


3 Rounds:
2 minutes of Assault Bike For Cals
2 minutes of Alt. DB Snatches 20/16kg
2 minutes of Box Jumps (20 in)
2 minutes of Wtd Sit Ups
2 minutes of Burpees
1 minute Rest
Fight Gone Bad Style


Classic CrossFit

A) 20min. EMOM:
Min 1:
5 Jerks (off the ground)
Min 2: Pulling Skill (See below)
Pick Something you can do for entire 20min. on the jerk. make it hard, but not so hard you fail the last few rounds.
Pulling skill can be either:

1.) 3-5 Muscle Ups
2.) 5-10 Strict Pull-Ups
3.) 5 Weighted Pull-Ups
4.) 10-15 Kipping Pull-Ups
5.) 8-12 Bent Over Rows

B) 15min. to get as far as possible:
American KB Swings 24/16kg


Classic CrossFit

50/35 Cal Assault Bike/ski
50/35 Cal Row
50/35 Cal Assault Bike/ski
50 Burpees

-rest 5:00-

50 Burpees
50/35 Cal Assault Bike/Ski
50/35 Cal Row
50/35 Cal Assault Bike/Ski

Time Cap: 18:00 for each part!

– Taking the open seriously ?? Steady-state and just aim to keep moving. Maybe bring the cals down and throw in some skill work between movements if you want to enjoy some other moving vibes.

– Not doing the Open or not that fussed? Time to get that conditioning in! Time to get sweaty! Push hard and earn that rest!


3 Rounds:

30 DB Lunges 16/12kg
20 Wall Balls 9/6kg
10 Box Jumps 24/20″

3 Rounds:

30 Plate Sit-Ups 15/10kg. Plate
20 Cal Row
10 Box Jumps 24/20″

3 Rounds:

30 Al. DB Snatches 20/16kg
20 Front Squats 20/16kg
10 Box Jumps 24/20″


Classic CrossFit

Crossfit Open 20.4!!!!!


Pending on CrossFit Open 20.4!