WIN_20150805_095329This is for any could be cheater / rep shaver that comes into our community. This is so they have an awareness of this particular issue as well as an expectation of how it can be dealt with. A few months back we had a case that resulted in a canceled membership which we always hate to see happen…So if you’re reading this and have ever considered cutting a few reps off your workout – hopefully this will convince you not to.

There’s three things I know as fact about this issue. 1: I, along with many others, don’t cheat by shaving reps during a workout, 2: there are always going to be some that do, and 3: these people will eventually be caught (even if they don’t know about it).

Who cares if someone is cheating and ultimately shorting themselves? Honestly, I don’t. I’m not here to “coach” your character. However, this place and all the great people in it, can often help shape a character that needs a little push. After all, everyone can use a little character development now and again. So if you do “Grace” as only 27 reps – that’s fine with me. After all, you probably just did 27 more reps than 99.99% of the world’s population that day. You got a great workout and will be stronger and faster tomorrow as a result of it. But please, for the love of everything holy…don’t boast about it…heck, don’t even record it in Wodify as an “Rx” WOD. It’s simple – put in that you did 27 reps and make a note that there was just something that day that kept you from finishing those last 3 reps. I’m totally down with that – it’s called listening to your body and knowing that those last 3 reps were going to take you over the edge. That’s much better than lying to yourself and your community about the work you’ve put in that day. Sometimes I wonder if a cheater knows that people suspect it of them and just doesn’t care, or if they do feel slightly guilty about it. And maybe some people are so damn ego-driven that they don’t even admit to themselves what they’ve done and that they are simply entitled to being “the best”. Either way, it’s really not hurting me any (mostly because I’ve been doing this a long time and I have a good grasp on what is possible and what most athletes are capable of so I can see right through it). However, some members would argue that it’s unfair for a coach to not call out a cheater. Some athletes may care greatly how their name falls on the whiteboard. That’s fine. They come in and often work their tails off and probably feel gypped when someone scores ahead of them while doing significantly less work. So with that, I’m at least drawing attention to the issue.

How do I know you’ve shaved some reps? Simple, Husker (the gym dog) is always watching and he never lies. Really though, it’s not that difficult to pick em out. I always get confirmation before an accusation, but it’s sometimes just so ridiculously obvious.

How to deal with rep shavers! I’m still not sure how to deal with these situations. I’ve tried various tactics. I’ve written down the number of reps completed by a “shaving” athlete in hopes that they see it and realize they’ve been caught. I’ve stood next to a “shaving” athlete and counted out loud for them in hopes that they get the hint. I’ve specifically given the “don’t short your reps and someone is always watching” speech before benchmark WODs while they were in class to see if they take that hint. I found those tactics to be the least “awkward” but also the least effective. So, I’ve also done the “approach after WOD and ask point blank”. Usually, the moment they find out they’ve been caught they get very defensive and denial sets in. Now we’ve got a tainted coach/athlete relationship (or friendship for that matter). That’s how it happened in regards to the athlete I mentioned at the beginning of this tirade. I sent out a very “politically correct” and reasonable email detailing what I saw on more than one occasion. Of course I received no response and later realized that the said athlete hadn’t been back in and didn’t renew his contract. That’s sad to me. Mostly because they probably left with a bad taste in their mouth towards me, while internally justifying their own actions in some way. Now they’re probably stuck in some 24/7 globo gym working on bicep curls in the squat rack. I guess CrossFit just isn’t for everyone…but then I guess neither is losing. So for my parting words…if you miss a rep here and there because you’re WOD drunk and it wasn’t your intention, no biggie – do better next time. But if you’re purposefully cutting reps or even adding them during an AMRAP then I feel sorry for you.


Note: if you cut reps because you just can’t finish a wod (it’s too hard, you’re just not feeling it today, or something actually hurts) I’m ok with that. Just make sure you record what actually transpired. Thank you and good day.