On our previous blog entitled Community, Mental Toughness, and Confidence, I mentioned that I was scaling down my workouts, but made sure that it was still challenging for me. I would watch videos about CrossFit and do some extra work right after class. I would ask my coaches to watch me lift and correct my form. I never really Rx’ed until 2015. It took me 3 years to really work on the movements, and make sure that my form is on point. Ever since I started coaching, I’ve been seeing a lot of athletes who are scared to Rx and end up finishing the workout too fast without even breaking a sweat or sometimes athletes who are too confident to Rx and they end up doing half reps or end up not finishing the workout. So when do you really know when to Rx or when to scale it down?
We always stress out the importance of having good form most especially when doing barbell movements. Let’s use “Grace” as an example which consists of 30 Clean and Jerks at 135/95. For most athletes, they’ll finish this workout in 3 mins. If you can finish this workout without
hyperextending your back, then go ahead and RX.
They say consistency is key, which I agree. Once you have your technique down, then it’s time to work on Consistency most especially for Olympic Weightlifting. I used to hate Snatches when I first started, but now it is my most favorite barbell movement. One of the keys in being
consistent with your lifts is by repeatedly doing it with good form of course. So go and practice with a lightweight on your bar. You’ll be surprised with the outcome.
In CrossFit, Intensity means Power. Power is equal to Force x Distance over Time. You will be able to increase your Intensity by putting more weights on your bar, in a long distance, and moving as fast as you can. Let’s take Fran as an example. The goal for this workout is to finish it
as fast as you can. For elite athletes, they would finish this workout in 2 mins. If you think you can finish this workout in 4-5 mins, then yes you can RX but if you think it will last you 25 mins, then scale it down. Your coaches would rather have you scale down a movement and focus on intensity. There’s nothing wrong in scaling down movements in a workout. Even if most of the people at the box is doing RX, you have to tailor the workout to you. If this means putting light weight on your barbell or putting up a band for your pull-ups, so be it. There will be times that you will be choosing movements where you would RX and where you would Scale down. Just remember that your workout should be Intense and at the same time Safe. We want to see athletes progress not get hurt.
(Written by: Coach Effrey Cruz)