Do You Go For Consistency or Intensity When You Workout?

Consistency & Intensity:  Is There A Difference?

Yes.  Consistency as defined by is “steadfast adherence to the same principles…” while Intensity is defined as “great strength, energy, concentration…”  So that focusing on one while ignoring the other can present problems with one’s overall plan, whether that plan is exercise or architecture.

How Do These Concepts Work Together?

The folks at Street have an answer to the relationship between Consistency & Intensity.  Consider what happens when you return from a month long workout break.  Generally, one of three things occurs:

  1. You are consistent but lack intensity
  2. You have intensity but are NOT consistent
  3. You are consistent AND have intensity

In Street Parking’s example, four people have a goal to walk 1,000 miles.  Here’s the result:

Chart showing 4 people's progress while working on the same goal.

Person C wins.  Why?

“In the specific example above, intensity can be defined by the distance traveled per day by each person. From the outside looking in, we all assumed that Person D (the sprinter) would win the race because they were traveling at the fastest pace per day.

The reason Person D came in last place even though they had the highest amount of intensity while they moved? They were sporadic and inconsistent over the course of the 30 days.

Build The Foundation First

When you build a foundation of consistency first, then you “will breed results and those results will be in the form of a higher tolerance for fitness.”

A Change in Belief Systems Promotes a Change in Habits

Street Parking points out that when you “Change your belief system about which one should come first (consistency or intensity)” you will be on” the most assured path to your destination”, whatever that destination.

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