At the beginning of almost every class your coach tells you at what intensity you should perform during the WOD. Longer work outs usually require 70%, shorter interval work outs (shorter work out time with breaks in between rounds or sets) require 80-90%. But what is the purpose? Why is it better to listen to your coach instead of going all out at all times?
It is actually a quite simple work out principle. In this case we are talking about a whole programming which includes hard and light days as well as regeneration days (for example right after the Open WODs). Why? Imagine that you work out every day with us at CrossFit Committed. The programming we follow is build like this. If you go all out every day your body won’t eventually be able to keep up and regenerate. In your best case scenario it will stagnate, in the worst case you will get hurt. Either way your fitness won’t go up and you won’t get all that you can from the training plan. And every plan in any sport is built on the same principle: Load – Compensation.
„Load – Compensation“
Training helps your fitness to get better by distorting it at first. After you go all out at a hard work out your fitness is actually worse then before the work out. If the load was adequate and your rest appropriately after, your body will regenerate and your fitness will go up. This is called the compensation principle and the graph below demonstrates it too:
Another reason is training our bodies in different load zones so that we are fit overall and not just good at sprinting but do good at endurance. Endurance athletes take into consideration their pulse. However, it is necessary to undergo a workload ECG in a specialized workplace where you gain your own values important for managing your workout, such as maximum heart rate, lactate threshold, aerobic threshold, etc. Thanks to these values, you are able to build and manage your training to the exact extent of your body. So in reality, we should tell you at what heart rate frequency each one of you should be moving during each WOD. But because this is a little unreal in group classes, we will have to do with percentage.
In order to get a better sense of how the percentage of effort should be “felt”, take a look at the Borg scale of perceived effort:
So if you want to get the most out of every work out, try to keep up and listen to your coach’s recommendations. Keep the recommended intensity and trust me when I say that you won’t have to wait a long time to see the results.