Today in class we did not post an “Rx” next to any scores on the whiteboard. It was an experiment to shift the focus on the intent of the WOD and in turn your overall health, wellness and longevity. Through CrossFit and proper nutrition, your overall fitness, health and wellbeing can continually improve. We are able to build strength, increase cardiovascular endurance and overall work capacity as we progress through the program. It’s this constant progress which motivates us to come back day after day to face the never ending challenge in front of us. CrossFit doesn’t get easier but yet we thrive on the results.
There comes a point in our CrossFit journey where we have the ability to do the posted workouts “Rx” or as prescribed. However, we need to ask ourselves if it’s appropriate for the posted WOD that day. Are you trying to “win” today? Trying to compete against someone else? Leaderboarding at the whiteboard? Perhaps motivated by an Rx next to your name? “Rx” may be appropriate for certain workouts but it may not be appropriate for all of them. Every WOD we post has an intended stimulus. What this means is each workout has an intended feeling, an intended time and an intended metabolic response for the work in front of you. For example, if you have the ability to complete a few strict pull-ups and your max thruster is 75lbs, it does not mean you should complete the workout “Fran” as prescribed with 45 reps each of 65lb Thrusters and Pull-ups. Sure you may be able to complete the workout with countless single repetitions in 15 minutes but that is not the intent of the WOD. Fran should be very fast and leave you gasping for air wondering what just happened to you. Scaling accordingly can bring the expected response.
The term “Rx” is short for prescription. We post a WOD and those who do it as posted without modification get to say they took the “prescription” and often feel a sense of pride in their accomplishment. Flipping this over to the medical world, using the term “prescription” would refer to the fact that you were unwell, needed some medical help from your doctor and were prescribed medicine or treatment to correct your ailment.
If our CrossFit program is a proven path towards overall health, wellness and longevity, would it not be the “prevention” as opposed to the “prescription”? Regardless of how you completed your workout, whether it be scaled, modified or Rx, being present in the gym and putting in the work with the appropriate weights and movements will always move you forward on your path towards overall health, wellness and fitness.
Our workouts always have a posted scale for weights. Be smart about your workouts, chat with your Coach about appropriate movements and always consider your long term goals. In our daily training it’s not about winning today. It’s about winning at life for the long term. Be smart, be safe and enjoy your time at Maritime CrossFit for many years to come!
Jeff Perry, CF-L2
Head Trainer, Maritime CrossFit