What CrossFit RX means to every day CrossFitters

CrossFit Rx heavy barbell CrossFit Redux

If you’ve been doing CrossFit for a while, you know what the CrossFit Rx means. It changes from day to day depending on what the workout is.

But because CrossFit has turned into a sport, the standards for “Rx” have gotten so out of control with heavy weight and crazy movements, gymnasts won’t even try! We often think of gymnasts being some of the most accomplished athletes because of the control they have over their bodies and flawless movement patterns.

As a CrossFit coach, I hear it all the time from members whether or not they should go Rx. Or they may do Rx just for the sake of getting it written next to their name on the whiteboard.

The truth is, CrossFit Rx should be different for everybody.

I see a lot of CrossFit gyms that have 3 categories for their WODs. For instance, “novice, intermediate, and athlete”. This is a complete waste of time for the every day CrossFitter. Honestly, it’s a complete waste of time for anybody.

CrossFit is a workout program that is effective if done consistently and correctly. Unfortunately, if you give the members different options, many won’t get out of their comfort zone and then never progress out of it. The fact of the matter is that time under tension is more important than what number is written on the board.

No matter what the WOD is, every athlete should choose a weight that they can move safely and be able to maintain. The more work you do, the better the results. So if you pick a weight that’s too heavy and you’re only able to eke out a rep here and there, you end up resting more than you’re actually working.

Yet the athlete next to you is using a lighter weight and hasn’t stopped moving since the beginning of the workout. I guarantee the athlete who used a lighter weight ended up pushing more weight than the athlete who just wanted to see the CrossFit Rx next to their name.

Using a heavier weight does not automatically mean you will get stronger or get the results you’re looking for.

This is why the CrossFit Rx should be different for everybody no matter what the WOD. If you can handle Rx with no problem and keep moving, then get after it! But if not, then ask the coach what is the overall goal for the WOD is. Sometimes the weight will be too light, but then you know to move up next time. That is always a better option than going too heavy and struggling with bad form and very little time under tension.

Your body will, and can, do more than you think. Its’ the mind that will tell you to quit. So CrossFit gyms that give options on the workout category you want to do during a WOD are doing a huge disservice to their members. If you want results then you have to work for them. But you have to know what you can handle during a WOD in a safe manner.

This is part of the growing process in CrossFit. Really, in any workout program. No matter what the weight is, the fact is the more you work, the better and faster your results.

The more you rest during a WOD, well . . . at least you got “Rx” by your name.

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About the Author

Dave Gonzalez

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Whatever your name is, I'm the guy yelling it when you come in for class. I love what I do and I love sharing my knowledge of CrossFit and functional movement with every class that I coach, clinic that I run, and blog that I write.

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