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How Do You Incorporate Hard Efforts With A Moderate Intensity Model?

At CrossFit Justice we rarely receive pushback from our members regarding heart-rate based training. It usually happens from an outsider who questions us, asking, “Is that even CrossFit?” We love this question because it provides us an opportunity to explain not just what we do, but more importantly, why we do it.


We understand that challenging efforts should be incorporated into our training on purpose. Oftentimes people get sucked along for the ride & workout too hard on accident. That’s fine for some, but for many, it’s not. We acknowledge the body needs to be pushed & tested in order to improve. Ticker Training incorporates a hard, or go red effort about once a week, or 15% of the time. We say this with the caveat that we’re probably paying attention to our rate of recovery & the ability to repeat the effort over & over again. This is not an off the rails, hands on our knees, rolling on the floor effort.     

Hard efforts are like any other test of fitness. 5 x 1:00 on/1:00 off calorie sprints on the assault bike, 21, 15, 9 thrusters & pull-ups or even MURPH. Due to our high volume of training these tests are often in our wheelhouse. What’s also great to note is that our athletes recover quite well from the maximal efforts. Why? Because their aerobic systems push more blood & more oxygen back into the system when the work is over. Pretty cool stuff.

Now, you might be thinking, what does the person do who misses that hard effort? Where does that piece of the training come into play? Our answer is two-fold. 


One, that individual can make the session up during an open gym time if they wish. They could even participate in some other high heart-rate activity outside the gym if they’re looking to bury themselves. It’s really up to them.

Two, our more balanced approach is this. If you are so hell bent on beating yourself up, & are disappointed you missed the “go-hard day” then we might not be for you. Yes, we are upset that you missed the test, but there will be others. Save the gung-ho energy for the next go around. We’re sure it will be well spent then. 

If you have questions about balancing moderate & challenging efforts we’d love to hear from you. Until next time, Ticker On!

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