The Concept of Intensity

The Concept of Intensity

I’ve written about how important training with intensity is to driving results in a lot of different ways in the past, but it’s such an important topic, I thought I’d attack it again, with intensity, haha.

This one is going to be short and sweet, so stick with me. I promise you’ll be all jacked up to crush your next WOD by the end of this bad boy.

Let’s start at the beginning.

In the CrossFit world, Intensity is a simple mathematical equation:

Intensity = Avg. Work = Force x Distance / Time

So, put simply, the more weight you move in less time, the higher the level of intensity.

This could mean an external load. Think Grace (30 clean & jerks for time at 135/95 lbs). Weightlifting.

This could also mean moving your bodyweight. Think 100 pull-ups for time. Gymnastics.

This could also mean creating power while using your bodyweight to help. Think 500m row for time. Monostructural.

The faster you do each one of these things, the higher level of intensity you operated with during that workout.

Now, what does this have to do with achieving results you ask?

I’ll take this one back to a simple analogy I teach every one of our members in their first intro class.

Imagine you and I were to go meet at the track right now and race a 100m sprint for time and we tied. We’re talking photo finish. Let’s assume we’re faster than we probably are and say it took us 12-seconds flat, remember, we tied.

Then, for the whole month of October, you SPRINT (10) 100m’s every day for your training.

On the other hand, for the whole month of October, I WALK (10) 100m’s every day for my training.

At the end of the month, when we race again, who’s going to be faster and most likely win the race?

I sure hope you said that you will.

It seems like a no-brainer, right?

That’s because IT IS!

WHEN YOU TRAIN WITH INTENSITY, YOU. GET. MORE. FIT! (Yes, I’m now yelling through my keyboard, that’s how pumped up I am about this one)

Sooooooooo, with that in mind, why would you show up to CrossFit class and just go through the motions, basically just HIDING from intensity?!?!

It makes absolutely ZERO sense.

Come to the box ready to rock.

Figure out what it takes to get your head in the right place to train and then go do it.

You know that guy/gal that’s dying on the ground after the workout or stumbling outside for air and to maybe feed the plants that you think is crazy?



Ok, rant over.

Sorry, I got a little excited there and it ended up being longer than planned, but I hope you were entertained 😉

Now let’s get our mind right and attack our workouts with some added intensity next week and see where it leads. I bet you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

P.S. For you keyboard heroes out there that want to argue that intensity shouldn’t always be used when someone is new to a movement or the weight they’re using is a little on the heavier side or for some other reason you think they’re going to end up hurt, I agree with you. Fundamentals and Consistency should ALWAYS come before Intensity. However, the target of this blog post wasn’t to explain to athletes that they need to do more drilling with a PVC pipe or that they need to spend more time learning movements and improving movement patterns before they add fatigue, that’s our coaches job to evaluate on a case by case basis and make sure everyone is staying in their lane.