The CrossFit Prescription: Constantly Varied

Hello folks!


This is the final installment of CFBB’S “CrossFit Prescription” series. For those of you who are just tuning in, this three-part series is covering the ins and outs of the CrossFit Prescription, which is defined as “constantly varied, functional movements performed at high intensity.” So far, I have covered functional movements and high intensity, but I have yet to discuss the importance of these intense movements being constantly varied. Until now…


Constantly varied literally means that our programming is always different. Our WODs are a creative mixture of different loads, times, and movements. This variance is important for a couple of reasons.


  1. Variance allows for increasing our general physical preparedness (GPP). We do not specialize in any particular training modality. Rather, we specialize in NOT specializing. We offer a general, well-rounded program which readies you for the unknown and the unknowable. GPP comes in handy when that tire blows out on the Interstate and you’re the only one around to fix it; or when you have to move your girlfriend’s furniture into the bed of a lifted pick-up truck; or you have to carry your grandchild (who weights 30 pounds) out of a theater in which a movie reel caught on fire (tragic and scary—but real).


  1. Variance also ensures that your body will experience constant stimulation. There is no chance of “plateauing” when the programming that you follow is always different. Performing functional movements at high intensity in different time domains and load capacities means that your body will always be adapting to the varied stimulus. Adaptation—roughly translated—is change. And isn’t that what most people are looking for? Change? A change in body composition? A change in how they look and feel?


So, in order to prepare for the unknown and the unknowable and make sure that we are producing change, we must have a plan. Constantly varied programming is not random. If it were random, there would be a chance that we would perform the same movements at the same weight, multiple times in a short time-period. Random will not get us to GPP. Neither will routine. Routine is the enemy. Chest and tri’s and back and bi’s are a thing of the past.


Instead, we program WODs to hit all three of the “engines” that our bodies operate on. We program WODs to work on all 10 general physical skills: endurance, stamina, strength, flexibility, power, speed, coordination, agility, balance and accuracy. We program WODs that employ the functional movements.


We push. We pull. We throw. We jump. We pick things up. We put things over our head. We do it for a long time. We do it for a short time.


We at CFBB do (a bunch of different) hard stuff, fast.


And we’re pretty good at it.