The intensity of exercise is important



Ok, think of something that you can do well, lets just say you immediately thought of driving. lets imagine your new driving goal is to be a race car driver, so you get into your car and drive to work the same route and come back via Costco as you normally do and perhaps a few times over the weekend you pop down to the beach. How quickly do you think you are going to achieve becoming a race car driver?

Never right ?

If you wanted to become a race car driver you would need to put a lot of extra hours in, hire perhaps some time on a track and continuously put yourself into situations where you are forced to adapt and learn new things. If your car was to slow you would perhaps have to customize the engine so that it produces more power, and strengthen the chassis in order that it takes the new force.

So this leads me to a question that people sometimes ask me “so how hard should I be working out ?”. The reason I am writing this today is because over the last few months I have taken on many new clients who have been training for quite a long time and have contacted me because they have not been getting the results that they feel they should from the diet and exercise that they have been doing. The main problem with there routines is simple, the intensity is just not there, going back to the race car driver there workouts resemble the drive to work, there body and mind are totally capable of what they are doing in the gym so there is simply no reason for them to adapt by getting stronger, faster and lighter. After a while of working out with me at the correct intensity comes the next questions that everyone asks “is this ever going to get any easier Leigh?” and to that I usually reply “no”. My answer might seem a bit abrupt and I will always offer an explanation, the fact is when you are working out the things you are doing need to create a stimulus that your body recognizes and is therefore forced to adapt, in order for this to happen the exercise needs to be intense and pushing you outside of your comfort zone. This is not to say that every second of one of my workouts will make you feel like your about to die as quite a lot of time is taken of teaching technique, fixing problems and correcting imbalances. In order to help a client understand this process I constantly monitor there progression, I document the important things and when that question arrises I explain that as your trainer am here to push you continuously forward and If we look back in our journals last month your time for a 2000 meter row was 7:31 and we now just hit 7:14, so if you were to do a 7:31 2000 meter row today it would be significantly easier for you than it was for you last month, this makes them understand that things are getting easier as they are progressing, but in order for this to happen the intensity always needs to be high.

As for those workouts that mean nothing, you now the whole 45 minute light intensity on the treadmill crap, forget those and do that kind of workout with your family, perhaps a hike or a swim in the lake or 50 holes of golf. These are the times when you will really notice what all this hard work was for, your new fit and capable body will fly you up that mouton quicker and easier than it ever was.

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