CrossFit Intensity and How it Affects Your Results
Intensity – it is what drives results, in some capacity, in all fitness routines whether it’s muscle building, cardio, or circuit style workouts. CrossFit is no different – everything about it is based around intensity, it’s even called out in the definition (constantly varied, functional movements, performed at high intensity). At CrossFit Eminence in Thornton, Colorado, we value intensity and we fully understand that everyone’s version of intensity can look different. As coaches, we push for it, and we appreciate it every time we see it. The thing about intensity though, is that you need to follow a specific sequence in order to apply it safely. That sequence is mechanics, consistency, and THEN intensity.
Not only do we value intensity at CrossFit Eminence, we also value quality movement, or in this case, the proper “mechanics” of each movement. We don’t shy away from any complex movements in our programming, and we also constantly vary them from cycle to cycle. We often program Muscle Ups, HandStand Pushups, Pullups, Chest to Bars, Toes To Bars, Snatches, Clean and Jerks, and Double Unders, as examples, and provide multiple modifications per movement based on each individual’s ability. This means it is more than likely there will be a movement that you are not familiar or proficient at. When this happens, take a step back and learn the movement or work on the provided modifications to build toward it. Our coaches will instruct you on what the movement should look like and how it should feel – use the opportunity to slow it down, go light and learn. Once you’ve become proficient at the mechanics of the movement and can apply them consistently, then, and only then, will you be able to add the intensity (whether that is load, speed, or volume).
If you feel frustrated that you are working on the mechanics for a lot of movements, we understand – just realize that you are building a fitness foundation. If a coach asks you to reduce weight or scale movements, don’t take offense (as hard as that can be) – they are helping you take the necessary steps to build the mechanics and it will pay off in the long run. Doing it this way will help you become proficient faster than pushing it when you are not ready. Pushing the intensity earlier than you are ready is a recipe for injury, which will set you back further. Always remember, learn the mechanics, repeat the mechanics consistently, then go for that intensity, which will provide you with all the results and fitness goals you are looking for.