First Chapter Director outside the US, Matt “Bear Grylls” Wilcox, blames CrossFit for helping him stay young: “This is one of the reasons I love CrossFit, I can run, crawl, creep and kneel all day playing Airsoft and still be good for more.” Matt attended our Iron Sharpens Iron Denver event in June with impressive support from his local church, funding nearly all of his travel expenses. After returning to the UK, Wilcox launched Faith Rx’d North Devon in his rural, coastal home town in southern England. Weekly chapter events are hosted at his home box, CrossFit North Devon. He says he hopes to inspire many more chapters around the world. CrossFit enthusiasts from Canada have also participated in ISI and have expressed interest in starting a local chapter.
Faith Rx’d is uniquely designed to help bridge fitness and faith by providing the opportunity to develop both. Faith Rx’d is a Christian organization focused on strengthening leaders physically and spiritually to impact their communities. They welcome people of all faith to explore the message of freedom contained in the Bible. Chapter meetings normally include a functional fitness workout and a faith-based discussion. “Suffering through workouts together really helps us find common ground to then discuss how we live our lives in and outside the gym,” according to Wilcox.
Faith Rx’d was co-founded by Chip Pugh, the former strength coach of four-time CrossFit Games Champion, Rich Froning who prominently wears a Galatians 6:14 tattoo, and by Becky Conzelman, a former World Championship track cyclist, and herself, a four-time CrossFit Games competitor. CrossFit is the fastest growing fitness regimen, and home to the largest worldwide open competition to crown “The Fittest on Earth.” It is known as the “Sport of Fitness” due to the style of workouts which lend themselves well to both formal and informal competition.
In the USA, the link between CrossFit and Christianity is strong, with many of the top athletes openly professing the significance of their faith in allowing them to find victory in sport and life. While Faith Rx’d has strong ties to, and presence at the international competition scene, it also has a thriving and rapidly growing local ministry. So far, 21 chapter leaders share a private Facebook page and a monthly video conference call with Pugh, who serves as Local Ministry Director. They each attended an Iron Sharpens Iron event, hold each other accountable to living with integrity, and plan a progression of workouts, topics and formats that meet the interests and needs of their members.
Registration for Iron Sharpens Iron Tampa over Valentine’s Day weekend is now open! While Faith Rx’d coaches train participants how to find efficiency breakthroughs in functional movement to help them stay young and fit, they also hope to inspire stronger commitment to faith. For some, this may mean joining or starting a local Faith Rx’d chapter wherever they’re from.