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The Allure of RX (Part 1): Definitions

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There comes a time in every CrossFitter’s journey where they make the decision to Rx their first workout. Rightly so, it is a rite of passage and a cause for celebration. But what next? Over the next three articles, I hope to share some insight into Rxing WODs. We’ll begin with some conceptual definitions, what Rx is and what it isn’t. We’ll follow that by examining what it truly means to Rx WODs. Lastly, we’ll end with how to scale correctly so you get the “Rx Experience” – the feeling, the intensity, and most importantly, the results!

What Rx IS:
Rx is a descriptor for the WOD. Many people think that Rx defines only the weight and rep scheme. Those people are 50% wrong! Rx also includes the movement standards as well how many rounds / reps / or time domain that you should complete. We’ll expand on this in the next article. First, we’ll review what Rx isn’t.

What Rx IS NOT:
Rx IS NOT the standard the coach expects from you. When WODs are programmed, the Rx weight, rep scheme etc is designed for very high-level athletes. The vast majority of CrossFitters are not high-level athletes… AND THAT’S OK! The reality is that the coaches at New Day want you to select weights, rep schemes, and movement standards that work FOR you. Coaches aren’t looking whether you Rx or not – they’re looking at mechanics, your intensity, and if you’re moving safely. We expect most of our athletes to scale the WODs to some degree. While you may experience some personal (and instant) gratification of doing Rx WODs, they may actually be working against you. Simply put, Rxing WODs may actually hamper your efforts.

Considerations of deciding on Rx:
Deciding on whether or not you’re going to Rx a WOD depends on multiple factors. Below are some key factors that you need to think of EVERY TIME you come to the Box.

  • What is my 1RM for this movement?
  • How many repetitions am I asked to do?
  • Have we done something similar?
  • How did I do?
  • Do I have good form when I do this movement once AND 100 times?
  • Do I have any limitations?
  • Do I have some type of “-itis” that if I push through, I could injure myself?
  • How many times have I pushed this week?
  • Have I gotten the right sleep, nutrition, recovery etc?

We’ll expand upon these considerations in the next article as we examine what RXing really is.  Until then, happy WODing.

In Health

Coach Kevin