A rep cutter is someone who makes a conscious decision to cut the number of repetitions performed during a workout. The phrase, “if you cheat, you are only cheating yourself” is only partly true.
Let me explain why…
Yes, if you cut reps, you are cheating yourself. In order to achieve results, you should finish the workout prescribed (assuming you are not injured). If your coach is any good they have programmed a certain number of repetitions for a reason. Cutting the workout short means you are not getting the desired stimulus your coach intended for that workout.
Secondly, it is crucial to count repetitions honestly so that you can compare times and scores from benchmark workouts. When you redo a workout it is encouraging to see an improvement from previous efforts. Consistent miscounting of reps taints your scores and does not give an honest representation of whether you have actually improved.
Why would you do this to yourself? You do want to improve don’t you?
If you cut reps you are also cheating others.
An important part of CrossFit is the competition brought on by working out with people of similar abilities. It makes you push that little bit harder and achieve better results through higher intensity. However, this relationship is thrown out of balance if an individual chooses to cheat.
The person may not realize it but their cheating negatively affects the whole gym.
Other members become aware of the cheating and the cheater becomes isolated. Also, people that cut reps seem to not want to compete or get some mysterious injury before the CrossFit Open.
Members that are not aware of the cheating may now feel less confident about their own abilities and results. People feeling they are not improving or improving so much slower than other because the results are tainted. This can have so many negative results: people leaving the gym, giving up in a workout, stopping their fitness journey, ect…
It also may encourage others to follow suit and cheat as well and it can hurt the friendships built in the gym. A sense of trust that “we are all in it together” is broken. It shows a lack of respect for the values of self-improvement and a solid community.
Finally, I am a big believer that your mentality in the box can dictate your mentality when you step out of the gym. Positivity during any task, training session or challenge, can help breed positivity while tackling everyday life.
For example, they say that the simple habit of just making your bed every morning is the start of a positive day of accomplishments.
To the same token, negative habits inside the gym can breed negative habits outside the gym.
I once knew a member who was notorious in his community, for being a “rep shaver” during WODs. He would reduce his amount of repetitions in workouts and brag when he beat those he was competing against.
He lost the trust of his friends in the box and was ostracized in the community. Funnily enough, this particular guy was also caught cheating in his business only a couple of months later. I admit, it is a far comparison, but I stand by the statement that your attitude towards your health and fitness is just another way in which you are building habits in the rest of your life.
So if you actually have the desire to achieve your Fitness-related goals and improve as a person, think about how your attitude to CrossFit may be a reflection on yourself. Enjoy better training results, a stronger bond within your our community, and the building blocks of a successful day of accomplishments.