Maple City CrossFit
There are two types of intensity.
1. Power = Intensity
The first and most obvious type of intensity is having a high heart rate, lying on the floor in a puddle of sweat while gasping for air. This intensity is characterized by a certain level of discomfort.
Through a scientific lense, intensity is defined as Power, which is Force x Distance / Time. In layman terms, it means to do more work, but faster.
Now, before you head off to the gym to get your intense workout in, there are a few factors that need to be kept in mind.
Intensity is relative to high quality movement. You first need to learn how to engage in high quality movement. Intensity is relative to the movement, so in order to experience true intensity, it is necessary to reflect on your form and technique. If you have ill form or poor technique, your ability to actually yield results from intensity will be limited. So it is important to learn movements, becoming efficient with them before increasing the intensity. Secondly, maintaining quality movement is, as always, a high priority and should not succumb to intensity. Doing more work faster should not completely derail form and in the event that this is happening, the intensity should be scaled back to a level where you can move safely. Some egotistical personas may argue that this is in fact inhibiting their progress, however, getting hurt is what will actually inhibit your progress. Learn to to do more work faster with high quality movement.
Intensity is relative to your fitness level. Everyone experiences intensity at a different level depending on their athletic abilities, fitness levels, and other limitations. The great thing about intensity is that it can be scaled in various ways, such as by altering the weight, speed, or movement standards. Scaling can be increased or decreased and can be individually molded for everyone. At Maple City Crossfit everyone does the same workout, but does so to their own intensity, and thus one workout can accommodate results no matter the fitness level working beside you.
Intensity over volume. Many people confuse volume with intensity, which creates frustration when they don’t see results. Just because you workout for a long period of time, got sweaty and elevated your heart rate, does not mean that you had incorporated intensity into your workout. If you can lift a 20b dumbbell overhead easily for 20 reps and as a result you finish the workout before everyone else … was that actual intensity? Sure, you were breathing a bit heavy and you got a sweat on, but was it actually challenging? You need to rethink how to challenge yourself with intensity. Again, one of the best ways to get to know intensity is to experience it.
Intensity is not strictly defined by sweaty bodies laying all over the floor gasping for air at the end of a workout. This brings us to the second, lesser-known type of intensity.
2. Structured and Focused Workouts.
This second type is a lesser known component of intensity and even fitness in general.
Have you ever walked into your local globo-gym, ready to rock and crush your goals, only to get warmed up and realize you don’t have anything planned for your 1 hour workout? You stroll through the gym searching for open equipment and look to others for some ideas. You waste precious time trying to figure out what exercise to do, at what weight for how many reps and sets.
Even if you feel like you got a decent pump on by the time you leave, the lack of preparedness and structure in your workout is preventing you from experiencing this second type of intensity.
Structured and focused workouts give you prescribed loads and work to rest ratios. When you control these factors of your workouts, you bury your excuses saying that you need 1 more minute of rest. This is where intensity is born. A fitness program that clearly defines these parameters will create efficiency and maximize your results. Furthermore, a fitness program that strays from repetitiveness and is constantly varied in nature, will optimize your results.
Intensity is the key component in a fitness program that maximizes favorable adaptation to exercise.
This is how you become more fit.
We know that when we become more fit, we experience measurable results, such as favourable changes in body composition, decreased blood pressure, increase in strength, speed, agility, and power.
These are the results that we are talking about.
Intensity does not plead to mercy. If results are what you seek, you need to embrace the uncomfortable.
Fitness programs are widely driven by results. However, methodologies vary and thus so does their quality. Millions of people everyday are sold on false beliefs that a new and improved fitness plan will get them the results they are looking for! Have any of you been down that rabbit hole?
In case you haven’t realized it yet - the 30 day ab challenge subsequently does NOT give you abs. Shocker, eh?!
So, how do we know what fitness program will give us the results we want and progress us closer to our goals? There is one essential component to producing the desired results from a fitness program, no matter what your goals are.
So… what is this mysterious ingredient for success?
No intensity = no results.
So, what is intensity?
Intensity is a measurement of physics, not of opinion. Although, the only true way to know what intensity is, is to experience it.