Have seen this slapped over T-shirts, hashtags and other mediums wondering what is that? It has a very simple meaning.
HWPO is a 4-lettered acronym standing for Hard Work Pays Off, popularised by 5x CrossFit Games champion Mat Fraser. Whether he actually originated this mantra is debated, but he – with the help of sporting giant Nike – proliferated it throughout the CrossFit and fitness space. It’s a simple punchy saying, ascribing that hard work gets results, substantiated by his 5x Fittest on Earth titles.
Nike Training is a sub-category of the name brand Nike.
This is one of Fraser’s sponsors and they are the makers of the shoe the MetCon. HWPO has also now become a CrossFit brand in its own right.
On the 4th of June 2018, Fraser’s shoe came out the Nike MetCon 4 with his mantra HWPO on the innersole.
Mum, I made it!
It is no doubt that is global giants Nike are going to attribute a shoe just for you, then you’ve accomplished something great and have some serious clout.
The mantra resonates with many people. It’s simple and effective. Not just in the gym, but in all aspects of life. It’s akin to “reap what you sow”, or “get out what you put in”.
All of us love to feel a sense of accomplishment. If it’s working out how to build something; maybe learning a new language; perhaps doing Double Under skips is your target?
All these things are worthwhile endeavours and varying in nature. Yet this simple mantra can apply.
Furthermore, Mat Fraser is the 5x Fittest on Earth. So if it works for him, surely this motto has validation using that metric alone.
What’s Mat Fraser Doing Now?
Although retired from the competition side of the sport, he’s busier than ever. Probably training a lot less, however business is now a priority, as he started new ventures since announcing ‘retirement’.
In February 2021, he formally announced he would be retiring from competing after winning The CrossFit Games five times. This was suspected amongst the community as there were various hints before this. The rumour mill was rife.
What he would go on to do remained a mystery, and he kept this under wraps until it was ready to launch. He since divulged what he’s been up to behind the scenes after being interviewed on podcasts YouTube and other interviews.
The interview by Joe Rogan gave an interesting insight, as often Rogen does in his disarming and conversational-like manner.
One part of his business is the programming aspect of HWPO, which is now utilising a standalone app FitR and adding features.
Coaching a super-rookie
According to Morning Chalk Up Fraser and Jake Marconi are coaching Mallory O’Brien who is proving to be one heck of a rookie, come Games Athlete.
She had a very strong 2nd place finish, only 113 points behind 1st place Tia Claire-Toomey.
Mat Fraser was well known to keep all his training methods a secret when competing in The CrossFit Games each year.
His proclamation when retiring is that he would make all his secrets public domain, so everyone and anyone can benefit from what he did to earn his stripes.
This was also part of his marketing ploy which has seemed to work.
Buy Mat Fraser’s Book – HWPO
Best Gym Hacks provided an article that the best books Every CrossFitter should read. We featured Mat Frasers Hard Work Pays Off book, as of course, it is right up there.
It is not a series of memoirs as many CrossFitting authored books are. This is geared towards training.
You can find the link to his book here, which is well worth a read. There’s much we can glean from Fraser in his writings.
He did a stint as an intern at an aerospace company as an engineer. So with an engineer’s mind, he can apply logic and reason to training, which provided significant results.
So this infers you are in safe hands if you’re interested in progressing.
The HWPO brand now offers 5 levels or packages of programming. These comprise Flagship, HWPO60, HWPO Pro, HWPO Sweat and HWPO Classic.
Each one is different in its difficulty, intensity and suitability. Depending on your current level and what you want to get out of it, you select one of the 5 packages.
How much is HWPO Programming?
Below is a helpful table that breaks it down for you.
|Package||$ Cost Per Month||£ UK||€ Euro|
They all have a 14-day free trial, except HWPO Pro. On that basis they’re worth trying out.
This program is aimed at Elite athletes and is closed for new candidates for parts of the year. In the lead-up to The Crossfit Games, it will close down for entrants
It then reopens in Autumn / Fall, after the Crossfit Games season.
The reason for this is to allow those athletes on the Pro Program to have ample time to follow the programming to optimise results and outcome.
You can still register interest during Games season on the website.
Overview of the other HWPO programs
- 12-week training block
- Comprehensive cycle following Mat Fraser Recipe
- The target is to progress strength and work capacity
- For those who have prior ‘functional fitness’ experience
- Number based on existing percentages
- 2-hour training sessions, approx 4-6 days per week
This is quite an intense program, not for the average CrossFitter or faint of heart. 2 hours, 4, 5 or 6 days per week is quite a lot.
Only consider choosing this program if you’ve been doing CrossFit for at least 2+ years. You need to be well versed in all the movements and have a strong understanding and knowledge of your numbers.
You need access to Open Gym with all the prerequisite and proprietary CrossFit-esque kit you’d expect to find in any CrossFit gym.
Expect some beastings.
- 12-week cycles
- 60-min training slots
- Same principles as Flagship, but for those with less time
- For beginners and advanced athletes
- Said to be for progressive skill and strength
This is more accessible and is akin to an average CrossFitter who trains 3-6 days per week for one hour. In the 2 affiliates that I co-own, 3 days per week is the most common number of training days.
The below pie chart breaks this down for you.
On that basis, HWPO 60 is of that level. If you’re wanting to ramp up your training and not do just what your CrossFit gym program offers, the HWPO 60 may be worth trialling for 14 days.
If it’s not ticking the box with regard to intensity, try Flagship – if you have the time.
HWPO Sweat – Overview
- No experience necessary
- No technical movements
- Akin to ‘CrossFit Lite’
- 45-minute sessions
- Minimal equipment is required to follow the program
- Can be done at home
- Light weights
- High repetitions
This is a slimmed-down version of CrossFit. Would be useful for say a new, or emerging mother, who has some kit at home but not the time to get to the gym.
Or maybe somebody injured who is wanting something less intense but wants the burn, with the seal of approval from one of the greats.
- Community MetCon
- The idea is it can be used alongside an existing program
- Wide variety of WODs crafted by Mat Fraser
- Designing for beginner, intermediate and advanced
- WOD time domains 10-30 minutes
- Various WOD types (AMRAPs, Intervals, Chippers etc). Read this BGH article for the various types of WODs there are.
- Focus on utilising what’s been programmed, but to be done with friends
Chip in with your mates
This option lends itself nicely to a syndicated program. Maybe you love switching it up and find yourself training with a certain bunch at your box?
This option would be good to share the cost and do the WODs together at Open Gym with your buddies.
What is PRVN in CrossFit?
PRVN is short for Proven. It is a brand of programming, e-books geared towards training and of course merchandise. They are based in Nashville, Tennessee USA. It was founded by Australian and 5x CrossFit Games Winner Tia-Claire Toomey and her Coach / Husband Shane Orr.
PRVN is of a similar format to HWPO, Mayhem, JST and other elite athlete-founded online programming.
In essence, they offer very similar products, all capitalising on the success they, or someone representing the brand, has had within CrossFit.
The internet is awash with online programming.
Because it is easy money. It’s a money-making machine with little overheads and not a high barrier to entry.
If you’re going down this path, make sure to be selective with what (and who) you’re going with.
Going down an HWPO or PRVN route is a safe bet, as these guys know what they’re doing.