The Rx’d Workout

Lately i have been talking with members and other coaches about doing all workouts as prescribed and whether or not it is always the smart thing to do. To a new lifter the pursuit of doing all wods Rx’d is the holy grail. As soon as you have made it to that point you are a feel like you belong in the gym. This mentality leads to an over-trained, injured, and cranky athlete.

Our bodies do not always work at peak performance. Being organic, our performance varies with factors that occur in our everyday lives. Some of these factors are sleep, stress, diet, emotional well being, sore muscles, and mindset. It is important to listen to how your feeling and base you workout around your present state.

Here is an article on that Colleen found and shared.


Two letters that hold so much currency in Crossfit.


Prescribed standard.

If I don’t Rx it means I’m not a real crossfitter

If I don’t Rx everyone will think I am soft.

I will just suffer through it, I’ll compromise my form and mechanics to get those two letters beside my name. 

If __________ (fill in the blank of role model in gym) is doing it, than I have to too. 

Rx’ing workouts is the best way to get better as a crossfitter

Any of these sound familiar? I know these thoughts have run through my head more than once…

And of course we’ve all seen it , the athlete (sometimes us) who brutally slogs through a workout compromising technique and form, cutting corners, skipping reps, just to get those 2 letters beside their name.

The ultmiate pitfall of the Rx Fallacy is a gym whose culture is driven by these 2 letters. The praised are not those who strive to move well but instead those who do whatever it takes, sacrifice at all costs, to acquire that sacred Rx.

I’ll be honest. I could care less about ‘Rx’.

As I think back to all of the pieces of the puzzle that have contribued to my development in this sport, Rx’ing workouts is nowhere on the list. There are however, a handful of practices that I see as exponentially more valuable than those two letters, here’s what has worked for me:

  1. Finish every last rep, regardless of your time or placing
  2. practice ‘intentional perfection’
  3. write down each WOD and strength workout and your results
  4. go to that “dark place”
  5. study mobility WOD
  6. foam roll
  7. lacrosse ball
  8. stretch
  9. sleep 8 hours a night
  10. eat breakfast (preferably healthy)
  11. show up early and get a great warmup
  12. hydrate
  13. eat well (whatever this needs to look like and mean to you)
  14. work one on one with a gymnastics coach
  15. study gymnastics WOD
  16. learn proper gymnastics movement progressions
  17. work one on one with an olympic lifting coach
  18. check out Spencer Arnold’s Olympic Lifting Blog
  19. PR your snatch
  20. PR your Clean and Jerk
  21. set SMART goals and write them down!
  22. take an active recovery day
  23. learn burpee mechanics and “skill transfer”
  24. cheer on the athletes better than you
  25. cheer on the newest athletes in the gym
  26. film yourself practicing your weaknesses
  27. know all of your gym’s members names, use them!
  28. practice squatting with vertical torso, hitting full bottom, and activating stretch reflect bounce out of bottom
  29. high five the new person at the gym
  30. HAVE FUN

At the end of the day there is tremendous value in having a prescribed standard for measuring progress and performance across the board. Rx allows athletes to gauge their success against others in their gym, and around the world.

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