"If you look at our ancestral activity patterns, you can see that we had lots of languid periods of rest interspersed with a few short bursts of very-high-intensity efforts.... I believe in variety and intensity of exercise." -Arthur S. De Vany, professor of economics at the University of California, Irvine, speaking on segment 108 ("Can you really extend your life?") of the PBS’s "Closer to Truth"
The definition of CrossFit that they teach at the Level I Certification is "constantly varied functional movement performed at high intensity." However, what does intensity mean to you? Webster's Dictionary describes it as an 'extreme degree of strength, force, energy or feeling.'
Intensity can mean different things; completing reps or workouts at as fast pace is the way most of us think, but that is only one version. Some other ways I have used intensity to increase my fitness is:
1) first and foremost to increase the weight on the workouts, my goal was to be able to complete any workout I encountered at the prescribed weight. (Ex: Men's weight is 95 #, and you (male or female) can complete it at 65 #-try to increase by 5# each subsequent workout till you can complete any workout at that weight)
2) slow down slightly during the workout and ensure you preform each rep as perfectly as possible. (Ex: Squatting below parallel, with a straight and tight back, knees out over toes, etc.-even when completing 450 reps like on "Chelsea")
3) perform the workout to the highest level possible, it may slow down your time, but you will have done more work in the workout which means a greater power output (Ex: you have pull ups so you perfrom chest to bar pull ups now -OR- your can't complete push up workouts with true push ups, but you take longer rest periods and try to complete it before dropping to knee push ups.)
As is stated in the CrossFit article "What is Fitness", 'If you only work your weight training at low reps you won’t develop the localized muscular endurance that you might have otherwise. If you work high reps exclusively you won’t build the same strength or power that you would have at low rep. There are advantages and disadvantages to working out slowly, quickly, high weight, low weight, “cardio” before, cardio after, etc. You must always keep it varied.' CC