What is the deal with Rx?

By: Mike Collette B.S C-PT CES
First things first, Rx means “prescribed”. If a workout calls for certain standards (ex: particular weight, height, movement standard etc) and you perform those particular standards for the workout or WOD, you can then classify that WOD done at Rx or “prescribed”
Now with that said, there is nothing wrong with not doing a WOD Rx. For the majority of people, lets say 70-80% will not do the WOD Rx and for that matter, the number only goes up when doing WODs Rx consistently. That’s not to say though that for many people doing a WOD Rx isn’t a goal for them. It’s a great feeling when you can write on the white board or in our case, hit the Rx button on WODIFY that you did everything to the standards that day.

Why we don’t care about Rx:

Everyone is different; some have very specific goals, some just workout to maintain health or have fun, some people quite frankly won’t do a WOD Rx for the simple reason that they don’t care about it as much and that’s fine! In addition, there are some people that shouldn’t be trying to do a WOD Rx for the simple fact that it isn’t safe. The biggest reason why we don’t care about Rx is for the reason that you need to work to your means. Safety and consistency is much more important and outweighs the fact that you did a workout Rx then hurting yourself trying to do it. It might be a shot to your ego not hitting that Rx button or having “Rx” written next to your name on the whiteboard, but for the most part, it was probably a good decision. Any good coach knows which athletes can complete a WOD Rx with minimal risk. Listen to your coach for advice on what you should be doing. Check your ego at the door, we want you to be back in the gym tomorrow, not out for several weeks because of an injury!

Why we care about Rx:

As previously discussed, we went over the major reason why going Rx isn’t a necessity, staying healthy is. To that end, there is a big reason why Rx is important. This goes beyond having a goal to get to that level. Not to say that isn’t important, it is, but the major reason why an Rx standard exists is to put the workout on a certain level for people. If you are the type of person consistently doing Rx WOD’s chances are you like to look at the Rx scores of other athletes/members of your gym or even in the world for that matter. There are Rx standards on all the CrossFit Girl and Hero WODs. This is to establish a standard for all to follow and to test and re-test your fitness gains. Here is where Integrity comes into play. One of our core values at CFP, Integrity, goes beyond honesty and cheating, it defines who you are. Regardless if you do your WOD Rx or not, cheating the standards to improve your score or beat the best score of the day quite frankly is unacceptable. This isn’t a matter of just working out, this is a life lesson. If you’re going to hit the Rx button or claim to do it Rx you better abide by the standards, it is only fair to those who do it as well!

Why you should care and not care about Rx:

The biggest reason to for most people going Rx as I stated is predominantly goal driven. Many people find satisfaction in being able to do the standards of the WOD that day and that is great. It allows for clear testing and retesting and gives you something to work towards. The reason why you shouldn’t care about Rx is that it shouldn’t define who you are. Your work ethic, grit, integrity, attitude and determination should be what defines you in the gym regardless of what standard or movement you do. Everyone appreciates someone who works hard to their means, not one appreciates lack of Integrity.