Is Boutique Fitness Right for Me?

If you’re ready for results it’s time to ditch the health club…

There was a time when we got all the exercise we require from our daily activities. But as hunting and gathering lead to farming and eventually the industrialized world we live in today the need for human “labor” has been nearly eradicated. Now that we work desk jobs, eat our meals from the hot bar at Whole Foods, and enjoy a generally sedentary lifestyle we are required to reintroduce this missing physical activity. For some reason, the question of how to add physical activity, or work, back into our lives is one that has proven to be puzzling, controversial, and difficult terrain to navigate.


In response to the demands of the market the fitness industry has grown tremendously, particularly in North America where an estimated $28 billion was spent in 2015. Much of this industry is dominated by health clubs and large gym franchises that offer a sampling of strength equipment, cardio machines, TV’s, massage chairs and minimal staffing. Granted  how many staff members do you need when your members don’t actually attend the club? In a study done by students at UC Berkeley found 67% of gym memberships are never used in the population they surveyed.


“If you are not going to the gym, you are actually the gym’s best customer.” -Stacey Vanek Smith, NPR


The savvy marketers at big box gyms know how to target their marketing towards individuals who won’t actually come to the facility. As humans we often get a rush of excitement by a new fitness undertaking. “This is it, the time I actually change, no looking back,” you say. The challenge is that the health club has made zero commitment to you. They don’t care if you show up or not. Luckily there is someone out there who does.


Boutique fitness is the alternative to the traditional health club model. Boutique gyms offer specialized classes based on the expertise of the owners, teachers, or coaches. CrossFit boxes, Barre studios, Bikram yoga, parkour facilities, spin classes  are all great examples of the boutique fitness model.


These communities succeed when the all parts are working together; the owner, staff, and clientele all succeed when they each meet their goals. This synergistic effect leads to faster results and more satisfaction from all parties. As a client you have a team of coaches and fellow members who are all rooting for you, teaching you, and most importantly holding you accountable. Becoming fit doesn’t have to be a chore, a challenge, or a pain point. In fact, it can even be fun 😉


Boutique gyms have been seen rapid growth in the past decade as clients recognize that when it comes to fitness, not all gyms are created equal. Some of the most common excuses sound like:

  • “I have a hard time sticking to a routine”
  • “I’m just too busy to exercise”
  • “I get bored with going to the gym, it always feels like work”
  • “I don’t know how to lift weights/choose a routine/eat the right food”


These are great excuses, but since you’re ready to make a change it’s time to ditch the excuses and focus on RESULTS. By implementing a system that counters your excuses you’ll be left with the only option, the results that you want to achieve.


If you struggle with sticking to a routine you will benefit from the coaches, friends, and community members that you’ll meet at each class. A group of people that will ask you about your day, learn about your goals and life, and most importantly encourage you to show up consistently to your workouts.


If you claim to be too busy then you should sign up for classes ahead of time. The wide variety of classes that are available each day at time frames that are consistent with your schedule make it easy to squeeze in an hour long workout.


If boredom is your challenge then a workout that changes every day is exactly what you need. Not only that but the different coaching styles and friends you’ll make at different times of the day make each class a totally unique experience.


If information is the enemy then relax, because that’s already been taken care of for you. Your coach has put a lot of thought into a training program that will improve your fitness and will be by your side to instruct you on form, breathing, and what weights to use. Keep an eye out for group nutrition challenges to boot!


To get the results you want sometimes you need to try a new approach. If that trip to the gym feels more daunting than Frodo walking the ring to Mordor then it’s time to see what a boutique gym has in store for you!

The Power of Choice

Most of us have an area in our life we wish we were performing better in. That part of us that doesn’t quite fit into our own skin. It could be a touchy subject that our spouse and friends know to steer clear of, the elephant in the room. It could be the promotion you still haven’t received, the credit card you haven’t paid off, or the weight you were supposed to lose by the beginning of  summer… in 2012.


And because you’re wearing this very uncomfortable skin that’s not quite your size I am happy to tell you that you are exactly where you chose to be today.


I can already hear the objections rising up so let me explain why.


You see I totally understand your story. I understand because it’s yours, mine, and everyone else’s. Sometimes having a new baby, a busy time at work, or the worst timing for a medical emergency/broken down car/economic depression can happen. There are a million and one events in life that can derail us. They are not always fair and can seem impossible to overcome when they show up knocking at our door.


“Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths.”

-Arnold Schwarzenegger


At that point we do an admirable thing. We give up on our dream. We set it aside to go fix the problem. We change our identity and become the superhero who knows exactly how to work overtime and take care of a sick parent. We do it because we want to make sure the story has a happy ending. We do it out of love.


And life goes on.


And sometimes the situation gets better. And sometimes it doesn’t. Either way, the situation that called for a superhero 6 months ago no longer needs a hero to save it. But there you stand in cape and tights committed to action. Except now it’s time to go home. Time to write a new story.


Where you stand today is a result of many choices. Some of your hero moments were the big decisions that shaped your trajectory. Like I said, I’m proud of you for doing that. But now it’s time to get back on the path. Your path. The one you stopped telling yourself that you wanted because it hurt too bad to think that it may never come true.


You might think it’s too late (it’s not).


You might want to try, but feel that you strayed too far (you haven’t).


You have to remember you have the power of choice. And it’s a good thing that you do. It gives you the power to turn your greatest adversity into your greatest strength. You always have the option to shy away or to stand and fight.


It’s time for a new story. You’re the hero and you’re at the turning point in the movie of your life. So what are you going to do next?You’ve endured hardship, learned tough lessons, and fallen time and time again. Wouldn’t this be a great time for everything to turn around?


Maybe you can recruit someone to help you get there, a long lost friend or a wise old mentor. Maybe you need to crank up “Eye of the Tiger” and experience the training it will take to achieve your success.


The time to act is now. Don’t slip back into your old story. You are the hero. The power of choice brought you here. Your choice decides what happens next.


So what are you going to do?


[GYM OWNER:] Add a call to action here, like: “Schedule your Free Consult here” with a link.

5 Reasons to get STRONG

Fitness trends come and go and most fall to the wayside for good reason.

Most programs fail to produce consistent results. It’s a wonder why so many folks stray away from what is tried and true when it comes to exercise programs?

“The rule is: the basics are the basic, and you can’t beat the basics.” -Charles Poliquin

Despite what your goals may be, every individual can benefit from physical resistance training. Not only that, but the health benefits extend far beyond your short term fitness goals. Regardless of why you train, let’s take a look at some of the reasons you should incorporate strength training into your fitness regimen.

1. Training for strength produces results.

Whatever your goals, muscle will help you get there. Some companies in the fitness industry has made a fortune around buzzwords like “tone”, “lift”, and “sculpt.” The problem is there’s no way to measure those loose terms. If you want to change your body composition there is only the ability to gain or lose muscle while simultaneously gaining or losing fat. If you are looking for the most efficient way to do make a change then strength training is your best option.

Strength training, or physical resistance training, can be defined as a type of physical exercise specializing in the use of resistance to induce muscular contraction which builds the strength, anaerobic endurance, and size of skeletal muscles. When you gain muscle you increase your bodies basal metabolism (the amount of calories you burn each day before factoring in physical activity). It’s kind of like putting a bigger engine in a car. The car is capable of moving faster or pulling a heavier load (more muscle), but it also uses more fuel (fat) whether it’s cruising down the freeway or idling in the driveway. Strength training helps us “tone” through this muscle gain/fat loss trade.

2. “You can’t manage what you can’t measure.” -Peter Drucker

Training for strength provides a clear path for success. You can set training goals that are specific, measurable, and produce desired outcomes. A good coach will help you design a plan towards these goals with checkpoints along the way. Your strength training program is a road map to success with clear directions. Sets, reps, and weights lifted safely through the full range of motion are the signals that you’re on track. Many people find that a more detailed plan helps them stay motivated as they experience progress.

3. Age gracefully with more muscle mass.

As we get older strength training is one of the most important things we can do for our health. Physical independence is a key factor in a great quality of life.

A comprehensive study of strength training has been proven to:

  • Improve motor function
  • Lower resting heart rate
  • Increase stamina
  • Prevent sarcopenia (age related muscle loss)
  • Improve bone mineral density
  • Prevent and help rehab injuries

Functional strength training will be an asset in daily life too. From picking up grandchildren or bags of groceries to climbing stairs with confidence.

4. You’ll experience epic brain gains.

Did you know that lifting weights can strengthen your brain just as much as it does your body?
Dr. Yorgi Mavros from the University of Sydney has found that high‐intensity physical resistance training (PRT) results in significant improvements in cognitive function, muscle strength, and aerobic capacity in older adults with mild cognitive impairment. Adults who followed a resistance training routine in addition to cognitive training performed significantly better than control groups on a series of mental tests. A couple key factors to note:

The participants exercised 2x/ week working to at least 80% of their peak strength.
The benefits lasted one year after the exercise prescription had ended.

What does that mean? According to Yorgi, “The stronger people became, the greater the benefit for their brain.” Let that sink in for a minute. You actually grow your brain by training to become stronger! It makes me wonder if Einstein developed his Theory of Relativity in between heavy sets of back squats…

5. Strong moms have healthy babies.

During pregnancy, the question always arises of what does fitness look like for this stage of life? With so much on the line, it’s important to consult with a doctor before beginning any fitness routine. Luckily, there is a tremendous amount to be gained by incorporating a strength training routine under normal circumstances. Resistance training can help alleviate symptoms and improve health outcomes for the mother and child. According to the Mayo Clinic, women who follow a consistent strength training routine during pregnancy can experience:

  • Reduce backaches, constipation, bloating and swelling
  • Boosted mood and energy levels
  • Better sleep
  • Prevent excess weight gain
  • Maintain levels of muscle strength and endurance
  • Reduced incidence of gestational diabetes

Not only that but women who train during pregnancy report enhanced body image and better psychological well-being!

We would love to help you live a healthy strong life. Schedule a Free Consult to learn more.

Please join me in welcoming Nicole Wilson as our newest Nutrition Coach. We are revamping our nutrition program to include personalized meal plans, accountability, and periodic reviews. If you are looking to get a head start on your 2018 fitness and weight maintenance goals then stay tuned for great content, tips, and recipes.
So let’s start this off with a healthy list of meals you can choose from a few of the surrounding restaurants in Moore County.
Like our nutrition page to stay informed and receive free nutrition advice.
Also on Instagram: @nicolesnutrition611

Stress Sleep & Weight Loss

Why can’t I lose weight even though I’m working out?

I’ve spent most of my life going through cycles of weight gain and weight loss. I’m sure there are some people that can relate to this while others may be on the far ends of the spectrum. Now as I’m in my 40’s I’m starting to see that it’s harder to maintain my “ideal” body. I started thinking about what most people say about getting older and to some degree I would agree. I finally accepted the fact that I can’t keep up with the 20 year olds in my CrossFit classes and I have more experience with injuries that seem to creep back into my life at the most in-opportune moments.  There are other things that seem to happen as we get older as well that contribute to our physical health.

With each passing birthday cake we seem to also inherit more responsibilities.  We get promoted at work, have kids, adopt pets, and buy homes. All of these things seem to demand more of our time and we slowly change our lifestyles to meet these demands. Often times this means irregular sleep patterns or increased levels of stress. Have you ever had a day where things just are not going well and you feel like some comfort food would make you feel better? Or maybe it’s one of those days where you just don’t care what you eat because you don’t have the mental capacity to think about it.

I’ve had periods in my life where I’ve been very disciplined with my diet, but I also experience days where Dominos Pizza is just the only choice because I’m too tired to figure out what I’m going to make for dinner, then run to the store, and then come home and cook. Why does this happen you may ask! Well I started thinking about how best to help people that seem to be putting in the physical effort but just can’t quite hit their numbers. After some research I’ve put together a summation of a few areas that affect our weight management goals. This of course is not all encompassing but they may surprise you.

Numerous studies have shown that irregular sleep patterns increase the intake of calories. These studies were conducted on preschoolers, adolescents, and adult males; all on separate studies and by different scientists and researchers. One article noted that preschool children not only consumed more during the period of temporary sleep deficit but also during the next recovery day. Another article noted that during sleep deprivation, we are more likely to eat sweets and fatty foods.

This sleep deficiency isn’t based on a set amount of sleep. Some people are well oiled machines on only five hours of sleep, while others cannot function on less than eight hours. The exact number you need as an individual may differ but these studies used control groups that received a set number of hours for the first period of the test and then were abruptly modified, resulting in a sleep deficiency.

Something else I’ve noticed in myself and in my family members, deals with the relationship between stress and lack of sleep. Although I did not research how stress levels related to sleep deprivation it’s easy to see irritability and lack of patience on those days we didn’t get enough sleep. What I did find was the correlation between bad food choices and over eating when we are stressed.

Stress directly affects cortisol levels in your bodies.  Cortisol is a steroid released by the adrenal glands. It is most notably associated with our “fight or flight” response. The primary function of cortisol is to regulate energy and mobilization. It also controls what macro-nutrient to utilize based on the situation (fats, proteins, or carbs). When we are affected by negative stressors we are subject to the cortisol levels increasing our urge to consume foods high in sugar and fat. This sounds like our bodies natural response based on primal instincts to store high caloric foods to survive life threatening situations. This article also indicates that stress increases our appetite and stores these extra calories in subcutaneous fat cells in our abdominal region.

I had always assumed that lack of sleep and stress levels affected our ability to reach our weight loss goals but after reading the documented findings from tests, it’s pretty eye opening. CrossFit has had a huge impact on my life and while I don’t have the six pack abs I’ve always dreamed about I have been able to reach many of my other fitness goals. After correlating my personal experiences with the data presented above I will also make efforts to add more continuity to my life and regulate my sleep patterns. I think being able to identify urges may also help to curb the cravings.

As far as stress is concerned, our gym is my happy place. I can be tired, stressed, or moody and within a few minutes of walking into CrossFit 611, I have the biggest smile on my face and a heart full of joy. Working out beside my friends is the best part of my day; and when I get to work out with my wife, even better.



Acute sleep restriction increases dietary intake in preschool-age children

Elsa N. Mullins, Alison L. Miller, Sherin S. Cherian, Julie C. Lumeng, Kenneth P. Wright Jr, Salome Kurth, Monique K. Lebourgeois


Dietary Intake Following Experimentally Restricted Sleep in Adolescents

Dean W. Beebe, PhD, Stacey Simon, PhD, Suzanne Summer, MS, RD, Stephanie Hemmer, BA, Daniel Strotman, BA, and Lawrence M. Dolan, MD1,


Increased Food Intake by Insufficient Sleep in Humans: Are We Jumping the Gun on the Hormonal Explanation?

Jean-Philippe Chaput,* and Marie-Pierre St-Onge


Cortisol Connection: Tips on Managing Stress and Weight

Christine A. Maglione-Garves, Len Kravitz, Ph.D., and Suzanne Schneider, Ph.D.

611 6 Week Pull Up Progressions


611 6 Week Pull Up Progression

Before we get into the nuts and bolts of the 6 Weeks of Pull-Up accessory work, we would be doing ourselves a disservice by not looking at a few facts. As CrossFitters and Functional Fitness Athletes we seem to have milestones that we want to achieve. The most elusive of which is probably the Muscle-Up. Even though this may be the “I just want to be able to do one MU” dream for some of us, we need to think about physics and biology. While the kip and hip thrust can be a very powerful and effective movement, our upper body needs to be able to support the weight we are trying to toss up over the bar or onto the rings.

Building this base of upper body strength is not only a method of progression to achieve these more advanced movements, but it’s also essential knowledge for any athlete to know how to prevent injury. For most of us, injury prevention is not just something the physical therapist talks to us about but it should be a way of life. If we get injured, we are out of commission for fitness right? It depends; if we ignore the lesson to be learned and don’t take the time to build up to our advanced movements we run the risk of being injured again. We should take these steps in order to increase the longevity of our fitness journey, which will allow us to live a more abundant life as we age.

So enough of the why, let’s talk about the what! We have, at the least, two concepts we need to consider when we talk about Pull-Ups, which is the base of the Muscle-Up. Many will argue (usually not the coach) that you don’t need a strict pull-up in order to jump into kipping and butterfly Pull-Ups. While you may physically be able to jump right into butterflies and stringing kipping Pull-Ups together in a WOD, this doesn’t mean you are free and clear of tearing any number of things in your shoulder, arm, back or chest. It is important to take the time, in my opinion, to string 3-5 strict Pull-Ups before going into the kip.

Another thing of note as we get closer to discussing the details of the 6 Week Program is weight to strength ratio. I can tell you that I am 210lbs and even though I can Shoulder Press the same amount of weight as the guy standing next to me, this does not translate well because the guy next to me only weighs 150lbs. So even though we are both lifting 150lb barbell over our head, he is lifting his body-weight, I’m not even close. Also think about doing a Pull-Up with a weight vest on, even if it’s only a 15lb vest, this could easily make the difference between getting 5 strict Pull-Ups and not being able to get half way up the bar with the added weight. So as we work on these progressions, consider cutting some of those extra inches  that you would like to get rid of anyway. CrossFit Invictus suggests that guys should try to be below 18% bodyfat and ladies should strive for less than 25% bodyfat in order to maximize your success with any body weight exercise.

So now that we have knowledge portion of this program out of the way, let’s discuss our Six Week Progression. We have proven methods with a phase for each level of athlete. We will break down each phase requirement and ultimately you can start with phase one and progress the entire way through phase 5 which will incorporate butterfly chest-to-bar Pull-Ups. The intent is to build you up with a proper base and add onto your existing ability.


The KEY:

  1. Stick with the plan. Consistency is king here.
  2. Take care of those hands. Ripped hands will keep you from being consistent. Shave your calluses or use a stone in the shower. Also, the more chalk you use, the more likely you are to rip from friction. A “VERY” light dusting goes a long way.
  3. Warm up. Cold muscles during any workout is like having cold tires during a motorcycle race.


This is a progression modified from Chris Stroud’s pull up progression for CrossFit ( – Chris Stroud is a CrossFit Trainer at CrossFit One World in Union City, CA).


Phase 1

Current Ability: 0 strict pull ups

Goal: 1 strict pull up

Objective: Strengthening muscles involved in completing a pull up. Primarily the lats, biceps, rhomboids, and various muscles in the shoulder.*

Do at least 3-4 workouts a week.

Move to Phase 2 once you can complete 3 strict pull ups in 1 minute.

Weeks 1/3/5:

Day 1

3 sets of 5 jumping negatives. Jump up to position with chin over the bar and SLOWLY lower to full extension. Step back on box and repeat.

Day 2

5 sets of 15 second active hang on bar, then 5 challenging ring rows. Hold 2 count at the top.

Day 3

3 sets of 5 vertical hanging ring rows. If you are able to do more than 5 reps, then scale up to 3 sets of 8-10 reps. A vertical ring row consists of arms and back hanging straight down from the rings with palms facing out. Pull up with heels “dragging” the floor. If you struggle to get 5 reps in this position, step back until 5 reps can be completed.

Day 4

8 Struggle Ups Struggle Downs. Begin hanging on the bar. Pull yourself up by activating your lats and shoulders as much as you possibly can. Struggle for 5 seconds. At that point, step on a box to do a jumping pull up. Once chin has cleared the bar, perform a slow negative pull up. Slowly lower yourself to full extension. Attempt to do so for a 10 count (10 second lower).

Day 5-7

If you have time, motivation, etc. to perform pull up practice and exercise more than 4 days a week, perform 5 sets of 3 challenging reps on days between.


Weeks 2/4/6

Day 1

3 sets of 5 jumping negatives. Jump up to position with chin over the bar and SLOWLY lower to full extension. Step back on box and repeat.

Day 2

Accumulate 25 challenging ring rows. If you can string together 10 or more, they are not challenging enough. Make them more challenging by moving your body more parallel with the floor.

Day 3

3 sets of 5 vertical hanging ring rows. If you are able to do more than 5 reps, then scale up to 3 sets of 8-10 reps.

Day 4

3 sets of max hang from pull up bar with 1 minute rest between sets. Cash out: 5 reps 7 second struggle up.


Phase 2

Current Ability: 1 strict pull up at any time consistently

Goal: 5 strict pull ups in a row with no kip

Objectives: Every week do more pull ups than the last. Develop a good technique for kipping. Become stronger in the hollow rock position.

Do at least 3-4 workouts a week.

Move to Phase 3 when you can do 3 sets of 5 strict pull ups in 3 minutes.

Weeks 1/3/5

Day 1

5 minute EMOM 2-5 strict pull ups (increase up to 5 strict pull ups per minute)

Day 2

Tabata kipping rocks (4 minutes, 20 sec work, 10 seconds rest). Try to stay consistent within rounds. If you can perform a solid kipping pullup, do these instead.

Day 3

Tabata hollow rocks/hollow hold. Then accumulate 30 challenging ring rows. Have body as parallel to ground as possible.

Day 4

As many strict pull ups as possible in 4 minutes.

Day 5-7

Focus on kipping form and kipping practice


Weeks 2/4/6

Day 1

Same as week 1 (lengthen EMOM by 2 minutes each week)

Day 2

Same as week 1 (increase amount of pull ups per tabata round)

Day 3

5 sets of 2 negative pull ups. Pull up until chin passes over bar, then lower yourself down on a 10 count if possible.

Day 4

4 sets of 10 challenging ring rows, followed by 45 second hollow hold (increase for week 4).


Phase 3

Current Ability: set of 5 strict pull ups at any time consistently

Goal: Men – 10 strict and 20 kipping pull ups in a row, Women – 7 strict and 15 kipping pull ups in a row

*Phase 3 challenge – both men/women able to string together a few butterflys

Objectives: Develop stamina for higher reps

Do at least 3-4 workouts a week.

Weeks 1/3/5

Day 1

5 minute EMOM 2-5 strict pull ups (each week add 2 minutes to EMOM)

Day 2

3 sets max rep kipping or butterfly pull ups with 2 minutes rest between sets

Day 3

4 sets max strict pull ups. Rest 2 minutes between sets

Day 4

As many kipping/butterfly pull ups in 5 minutes


Weeks 2/4/6

Day 1

20 kipping/butterfly pull ups as fast as possible in least amount of sets as possible.

Day 2

Accumulate 40 challenging (parallel body) ring rows (add 10 more for week 4) 1 minute hollow hold each time you break

Day 3

Same as week 1 (try to beat score)

Day 4

5 sets of 5 negative pull ups. Do a strict pull up, then lower yourself down on a 10 count if possible

Day 5-7

If you have time and energy, do butterfly work and practice.


Phase 4

Current Ability: Men – 10 strict and 20 kipping pull ups unbroken. Women – 7 strict and 15 kipping pull ups unbroken. Both men/women able to string together a few butterfly pull ups.

Goal: Men – 40 butterfly pull ups. Women – 30 butterfly pull ups

Objectives: Build pull up capacity.

Do at least 3-4 workouts per week

Weeks 1/3/5

Day 1

4 minute EMOM of 20 seconds unbroken kipping/butterfly pull ups (if you are proficient at butterfly by this time, you should be shooting for 18-22 reps for at least the first set) – increase EMOM to 6 minutes in week 3.

Day 2

3 sets of 5 weighted strict pull ups. Rest 2 minutes between sets. (increase #2.5-5 in week 3)

Day 3

60 pull ups as fast as possible (increase to 75 in week 3).

Day 4

Tabata hollow rock/hold, 5 minutes butterfly work


Weeks 2/4/6

Day 1

Same as week 1 (increase to 5 minute EMOM)

Day 2

Accumulate 50 ring rows (increase to 60 in week 4). 1 minute hollow hold any time you break.

Day 3

Same as Week 1 Day 2 (increase weight if possible)

Day 4

5 sets of 10 negative pull ups. Do a strict pull up and lower yourself down on a 10 count if possible.

Day 5-7

If you have time and energy, do extra core and butterfly work.


Phase 5

Current Ability: Men – 40 unbroken butterfly pull ups. Women – 30 unbroken butterfly pull ups.

Goal: Men – 100 pull ups in under 4 minutes. Women – 100 pull ups in under 5 minutes.

Objectives: Capacity, volume, efficiency, and consistency

Do at least 3-4 workouts per week.

Weeks 1/3/5

Day 1

Tabata kipping/butterfly chest to bar pull ups. Count lowest score. Try to increase each week.

Day 2

5 sets of 5 weighted strict pull ups. Rest 2 minutes between sets. Increase #2.5-5 per week.

Day 3

5 sets of max unbroken pull ups (do not go over 20 pull ups per set – the goal is 5 sets of 20 pull ups unbroken). Rest 1 minute between sets.

Day 4

Accumulate 75 challenging (parallel body) ring rows. 1 minute hollow hold any time you break.


Weeks 2/4/6

Day 1

Same as week 1

Day 2

Same as week 1

Day 3

5 sets of 10 negative pull ups. Do a strict pull up, then lower yourself down on a 10 count.

Day 4

100 kipping/butterfly pull ups for time.

Day 5-7

If you have the time and energy, perform extra core and butterfly/kipping work.


Stop skipping scaled on your workouts.

Why going RX is preventing you from going RX

by CTP of Faction S&C

Have you ever decided not to post your score after a workout because you had to scale or modify the movements?  Did you feel that due to the scaling you didn’t do the “real” workout?  Are you ready to start posting RX times on the board?  If you answered yes, then this article is for you.

As Prescribed

If you’ve made it here and are still unaware as to what “RX,” even stands for, look no further than the heading above.  Some of the athletes at Faction make going RX look like a piece of cake, and some even scale up, making it more difficult than what was prescribed.

Are they doing something you’re not?  Nope, they’ve just accumulated enough strength and skill work over time to be able to handle RX workouts.

If you’d like to start going RX on your WOD’s then you need to:

  1. Get stronger
  2. Practice your skills
  3. Stop going RX

You can, and will go RX and heres how…

Stop “Saving it for the WOD”

The stronger you are the easier the WOD will be.  Lets look at the popular CrossFit workout “Fran” for example.  Fran is 21-15-9 of Thrusters and Pullups at 95# for men, and 65# for women.  If you can front squat 225# for 5 reps, then doing 95# for 45 reps is going to feel much easier.

All too often I’ll hear an athlete say they don’t want to lift heavy on the Strength/Skill side so they will be fresh for the WOD.  This idea actually does seem pretty intuitive at first, however it is not going to dramatically hurt your WOD, if at all, and will only slow down your overall progress and ability to go RX.

While you most certainly can and will get stronger doing the WOD, that is not the goal.  The primary role of our WOD’s are metabolic conditioning.  The time and place to increase strength is on the Strength/Skill side.

You’ll never get the strength you want if you don’t lift heavy.  If we are front squatting for a 5RM and you never get to a weight where the 4th and 5th rep were a grind then you aren’t lifting heavy.  Every time you fail to lift heavy, you leave a lot of progress on the table.

We have a limited amount of time for strength work, sometimes getting to a heavy weight can be tough.  If you don’t keep track of your PR’s (See: “The Number One Mistake Preventing You From Hitting PR’s”), then you will struggle to use your time efficiently.  If you know going into a workout that the last time you performed a 5RM front squat you hit #225, then you can make smarter jumps in weight in order to hit a new PR, instead of just lifting until it “feels heavy,” which can be very time consuming.

Work on Your Goats

Sometimes your inability to perform a workout as RX has nothing to do with the weight prescribed but the movement itself.  You’ll always scale handstand pushups if you never practice just getting into a handstand.  Maybe doing them makes you nervous, or you just struggle with them, and therefore they aren’t much fun… whatever the case, if going RX is something you really want then tackling these “goats” should be a priority.

A “goat” is an exercise or movement you dislike doing, or are weak at.  A great time to work on your goats are over the weekends during open gym hours, or after your warm up.  

Quit Going RX

And last but not least, going RX when you’re not ready to go RX is only hurting you.  Sometimes I wish there wasn’t even such thing as “RX”, as it can be the cause of many of headaches while coaching.

The Good

Having an “RX” keeps a lot of athletes motivated.  It gives you something to strive for, something to accomplish, and satisfaction when completed knowing you performed the workout exactly as it was intended to be.

The Bad

It makes some athletes feel like they aren’t getting a good workout when scaled.  This is far from the truth.  With the exception of a few genetic freaks, everyone in this gym scaled at one point, it’s how we get better.  

The Ugly

It can have the inverse effect and be a motivation killer.  If you are a guy and can’t perform the WOD using the prescribed women’s weight it can surely mess with your ego.

What To Do About It

It’s easy to fall into the “RX trap”.  That feeling that you need to do it RX or you’re not really working out, or you that you shouldn’t be proud of yourself.

The fact of the matter is that regardless of what the RX is, you should pick weights and scale in such a way that it challenges YOU.  Everyone is different, and are at different points in their fitness journey.

Priority number one should be safety (your technique).  If you can’t perform a movement/or certain amount weight with good technique then you should scale.  Seriously!  Priority number two is consistency.  Can you maintain good technique for multiple reps?  If not you may need to scale.  And finally intensity.  If you find yourself continually putting down the weight or stopping then you should be scaling.  Pick a weight and modification that allows you to stay moving.  Your conditioning will greatly improve this way.

Going RX with bad form is only a quick road to injury and no progress, and stopping after every other rep is really counter productive to the entire purpose of metabolic conditioning, don’t be “that guy”.

As I mentioned earlier we get stronger on the Strength/Skill side, and we do our conditioning during the WOD, so don’t look at scaling during the WOD as a missed opportunity to get stronger.
By focusing on lifting heavy every chance you get, working on your goats, and scaling appropriately going RX is most certainly in your future!


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CrossFit 611 Family,

I would like to take the time to recognize some of our members who have dedicated time and effort for this culminating event.
Featured above from left to right is Celia, Eric and Anna. They will be competing this weekend in the USPA Raleigh Ruckus Powerlifting Meet.

The meet is at 9am on Saturday (16) at CrossFit RDU in Durham. It will be Eric’s 1st, Celia’s 2nd, and Anna’s 3rd. They will all be competing in the in the raw open division. Anna currently holds the state record in bench for the 148lb weight class. She is looking to set another one in the 132lb weight class, and it looks like she’ll be going head to head with another lifter to do so.

Please encourage them as you see them and if you would like to go cheer them on, I’m sure they would love some support.
Our hats are off to the three of you and we wish you the best!


Team 611!