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AMRAP 5 mins: 10 Double Unders 5 HSPU rest 1 minute AMRAP 6 minutes: 10 Wallball 20/14 5 Clapping Push ups rest 2 minutes AMRAP 7 minutes: 10 Lunges (carry KB with you)
5 KB snatch (each arm) 55/35 Burn out: 40m Farmers Carry x4
From CrossFit Ethos:
The first thing most of us look at when we come into the gym is what is the WOD and can we do it as prescribed or “as RX”. We get excited when we can RX the entire work out. The clock starts and 3.2.1 go…and shortly after we’ve completed the WOD as RX. We tend to put a lot of focus on doing the WODs as RX but is this really getting us the most out of our workouts?
Everybody has heard of “increase work capacity over broad times and modal domains” but what does this mean…it means increasing our intensity or in other words or Power Output. If we want to get the most out of our work out we want to have the highest power output we can possibly do for that work out. This is where the as RX is not always the best.
When a coach is programming a WOD, they have a goal in mind of what they want to achieve out of the workout and the athlete. This is where “as RX” comes from. The workout is designed to achieve the most power output for the time or modal domain for an ELITE athlete and scaled down from there for everybody else. The key point is this is for the top level athlete, and just because you may be able to do the RX weight or movement doesn’t mean you should.
Take the workout Diane for example. Diane as RX is deadlift at 225lbs and handstand push ups in a rep scheme of 21-15-9. We recently did this at Ethos and my time was 14min 36 sec. Not real great but I managed 39.33 ft-lbs/s of power…not to bad right…WRONG! Top times for elite athletes are in the 2 min range producing 144 ft-lbs/s of power. This shows that the WOD Diane can produce a lot of power and should be completed in a lot faster time therefore increasing power output. If top Crossfitters are doing it in 2 mins, I should have a goal of doing it a lot closer in time to theirs…say a 4-6 min range. But how am I going to get there…ah the dreaded SCALE THE WOD.
Lets take a look at two ways to scale…load and reps. We can decrease the load on the deadlift to make the wod easier or we could reduce the reps (there are other ways but I only want to look at these two for this example). Because the deadlift weight isn’t as challenging for me as the HSPU, I am going to scale the HSPU down to 9-6-3 reps (deadlift reps are still at 21-15-9), and retry the WOD (hypothetically for now). My new time on the WOD is 6 min…pretty good improvement and now my power output is 85 ft-lbs/second, more than double than before…talk about improving my intensity. But you say, “I’m a bodyweight freak, and HSPU are so easy”, well then let’s look at scaling the Deadlift weight to 185 lbs. It may sound like it would be too light but finishing it in 8 mins. instead of 14 min plus creates 64 ft-lbs/ sec. It should also be noted that even slightly scaling the WOD per the above examples, and improving my time by only 2 min, still creates more power output than RX at the slower time.)
These examples are here to show you that “as RX” should not be the most important thing you focus on during crossfit. You should have a goal to have the most intensity you can for every WOD. The way to do that is to find the time or the reps that you should be at and then scale to get there. Ethos uses beyond the whiteboard so it is easy to log on before you come in and see what the top times/reps are for the Crossfit community as a whole. If the fastest times are around 4 mins, you want your time to be in the 4-6 min range, not 12-18 min and conversely if Mikko Salo’s time is 15 min, we don’t want to scale so low that we finish in 8 minutes. Think about what you need to do to hit that time and figure out if you need to scale and how. Proper scaling should be used by all crossfitters, from beginners to even the experienced crossfitters that can RX most WODs. Scaling is not a bad word. Remember its not always about the RX, and focusing on your intensity will lead to better and faster results.