There are two things that we as CrossFitters hold to a very high standard in the gym: PRIDE and INTEGRITY. Here are the dictionary meanings:
Pride: a becoming or dignified sense of what is due to oneself or one’s position or character; self-respect; self-esteem.
Integrity: adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty.
How do pride and integrity play a role in the gym? I believe there are several different ways. The one I would like to discuss is the “whiteboard.”
Every time you write your name on the board you should take pride in the fact that no matter what the WOD is you can finish the workout. You should take pride in the fact that you’re doing something that not everybody out there could do. You should take pride in the fact that you belong to a gym that a lot of people are scared to even walk through the doors of.
When people ask you what you’re doing for a workout, you should take pride in discussing exactly what it is you do in the gym. Usually outsiders don’t understand, and you end the conservation with “You just need to come and try it to understand it.” Or you laugh at the people who say “You can’t possibly get in a good workout in 15 minutes.”
Integrity plays a role when you write your time on the whiteboard behind your name. When you write your time on the board you are saying to everybody else that you did every single rep that you were supposed to, and you did them to the best of your ability.
When you put the RX behind your name you are telling everybody that you did every single rep, and you did every single rep with full range of motion. The RX means that when you’re doing pullups, on that final rep you got your chin fully over the bar — close is not good enough. During a WOD if a trainer tells you to go deeper on a squat, you can automatically assume that your last rep was not deep enough. It takes integrity to not count that rep when you’re tired.
Here is a conversation I had with an athlete the other day during the WOD:
Athlete: “Was that pushup good?”
Trainer: “I don’t know, was it?”
Athlete: Says nothing, shrugs his shoulders and gets down and does the rep over again.
That is what I call integrity.
So the next time you see your name on the board take pride in the fact that you are doing something that is going to make you better. And when you put your time behind your name have the integrity to ask yourself “Did I do every single rep, and did I do them to the best of my ability?” If the answer is no, you haven’t finished the workout, and the only one you are cheating is yourself.