From the Desk of JP Levesque:

“I’ve been trying to figure out a good working pace as of late, and I wanted your input. My original attack plan was to break workouts down by reps and meet my goal then rest for a max of “5-seconds-ish”. That seemed to work well enough, then I got to thinking what if I pace through each exercise so I never have to stop just take a pause or step back before the next. This has gone horribly wrong, I did Cindy yesterday and got a pathetic 6 rounds. I still had more in the tank to burn (not by much) but I didn’t leave it “all out on the field”.

Thinking more about Crossfit and one of its main principles being high intensity work, I’m wondering if its going to be better to hit it hard and get through my reps. Sure I’ll burn out faster and have to rest sooner, but then hit it as hard as I can until I’m burnt again. My main goal being by the end of the WOD I’ll have nothing left in the tank knowing that I couldn’t have done any better.

Basically Watching Charles a.k.a. “the world’s most ripped old guy” he goes as hard and as fast as he can (bellowing out the most amazing series of grunts I have ever heard) and is on the floor at the end of 20 minutes. So my basic question is of the 3 intensities / strategies which do you think is best? I’m also trying to figure in some factors from my own physiology based on what I think I know from school. I have essentially nada for endurance, a 5k run being about my max. I’m sure I could push that higher but I tend to thrive more in the realm of resistance training. Basically I know my muscles are quick twitch and I’m thinking if I work at a high intensity as long as I can then rest and repeat I’ll see better results.

I’m sure I’m not the only one that has this question about intensity, pace, etc. If you have any research studies or want to make a post on the locals site many people would be interested.

Thanks, I can’t believe how much I love country music, JP. ”

Okay, so I added that last part ;) JP’s question strikes the very core of our program. Constantly varied, functional movements, performed at HIGH INTENSITY. The answer sadly is brutally simple. I’m sorry, I wish I had cool research studies and high tech graphs and some sweet physics equations, maybe I’d seem more professional :)

Intensity equals exactly the amount of average power that you put out in a workout. “Cindy” is a 20 minute workout involving only pull-ups, push-ups and squats (only) with only your body weight as resistance (only). No matter which strategy you use to break up your rest interval (the time you spend standing, or laying on the ground, while the 20 minutes is ticking) it all comes down to how many rounds you do. Next time when JP hits Cindy again he’ll get say 12 rounds, no matter how he breaks up his sets, he’s literally twice as intense as he was the previous time he did this workout. When he gets (not if…) 18 rounds it’ll be three times as intense. Does that make sense?

No magic, just more hard work, piled on more hard work allowing you to do more harder work in less time, yielding massive results :)


Clan Chieftan Out

7 Responses to “Intensity.”

  1. Philip Bjorge Says:

    Good post Jesse…

    Tell Abi that yesterdays Tabatas murdered me…

  2. Harkness Says:

    I just read a great article on how are mind controls fatigue and ultimately our performance much more than originally assumed.
    So what does this mean in this situation? It means not only from a physical standpoint, but from a mental standpoint, endurance comes from doing the work. The harder you work, the more your mind will allow you to “leave it all on the table”. If you don’t push yourself further and further your mind will tell you that your fatigued much ealier than your muscles really are in the name of self preservation. So two simple things I have implemented are 1. Set fitness goals, don’t just do whatever. Set a goal and work to accomplish it. 2. Grade your work effort after every workout. I think this is key. If your not pushing yourself hard enough this will tell you right away and then you can do something about it.
    I will scan the article and email it to you – I think it fits in nicely with the Crossfit Model.

    Interestingly, I used to think Jesse’s comment “Your mind is telling you your tired, it is lying” was just funny. Little did I know that it was actually a statement of fact.

  3. Jack Says:

    I come in to Crossfit, READY TO DIE!!! Be-yah!!!

  4. Rodney Says:

    Olympic lifters practice visualization techniques. If you can’t see yourself doing it you won’t.

  5. "old guy" Says:

    Once you realize that intensity will not kiil you, you can find the zone, If I am still standing after a WOD
    I look for where I could have squeezed just a little more juice. JP stay consistent with your program and
    the results will follow, stay true to technique and times will improve and in the end the only person we’re competing against is ourselves. Crossfit rocks
    God help me but I love country music!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. JP Levesque Says:

    Well that answers my question. I look forward to panting, sweating, and grunting like never before.

  7. Rodney Says:

    Oh, and by the way. Because I have had issues not getting low enough in my squat I used a wall ball and touched my booty to that thing every rep for 18 rounds. I could hardly walk today! So part of my intensity training was pushing my flexibility. Ouch…

Leave a Reply