Should You Train the Day After Murph?


In 10 minutes:

60/45 Cal Row


In 10 minutes:

60 Burpees

40 KB Swings (53/35)

In 10 minutes:

60 Jumping Lunges

40 DB Power Snatch (45/30)


Should you train the day after Murph?

Yes! Moving the body the day after a tough workout will help aid in the body’s recovery process.

No! The body needs 24 hours of no strenuous activity in order to heal and fully recover.

Both of the statements above seem reasonable and make practical sense. So which one is right? The answer is: it depends.

I’ll use myself as an example to illustrate two different scenarios. I did Murph on Sunday evening and took a full rest day on Monday. I felt good Monday on but I had a general feeling of lethargy and fatigue. On Tuesday, I felt sore and beat up. From my experience, if I would have done a recovery workout on Monday, I would’ve felt much better on Tuesday. However, I had no desire to move around on Monday, so I didn’t.

There is no right or wrong answer to “should I train the day after a tough workout”. I’m using Murph as an example for this post but this applies to any workout that really challenges us. Here are some “it depends” things to consider:

-Do you have a strong desire to train? If yes, training is probably a good idea . If no, stay home and do something light like stretching or walking. Sometimes our bodies feel okay but we are mentally drained or unmotivated. This is okay, but should be heeded and considered because it can be a very early sign of overtraining.

-On a soreness scale, are you at 6 or above? If yes, it may be a good idea to skip an intense workout. I would recommend coming into the gym and rowing for 30 minutes and doing some light foam roll/stretching

-did you train a high amount leading up to the workout in question? An example of this would be the Open. If this is the case, multiple days off may the answer.

-did you get 8+ hours of sleep? In general, if you are sleep deprived, I do not recommend training hard that day

For me personally and in general, I do not subscribe to pre-determined rest days. I have always taken my rest days based on a quick questionnaire I ask myself:

Do you want to train today?

If you train today, will you be able to push yourself as hard as necessary?

Is your body in a state that training will be productive?

If the answer is “yes” to all three of these I will train. If not, I will rest. Note that the second question is a matter of will/effort. Even if you are not 100% can you still give 100%? I can’t tell you how many times I have woken up with every intention to train that day, gone to the gym, warmed up and then shut it down. On a different note, I have also trained 15-20 days in a row without taking a rest day and feel amazing doing it. So the point is, continue to ask your version of those questions.

In conclusion, the more you train CrossFit, the more you start to build awareness on how certain workouts effect you. And, the more you just know when it’s time to take a rest day. Ask those questions I presented and when in doubt, go with your gut feeling. Keep this  in mind as well: we are training to be the healthiest, fittest, and happiest versions of ourselves possible!