Workout of the Day

Potent Medicine


If we’re talking about pharmaceuticals, if the effects are the exact same, the consumers will always favor the drug that only requires you to take one pill every day as opposed to the drug that requires you to take, say, 20 pills every day. That one pill offers 20x more potency with equal efficacy, and so it really makes no sense to put yourself through the laborious task of choking down an extra 19 pills with your morning coffee.

It’s curious, then, how frequently people shy away from the same potency when it comes to their fitness. Drawing on our pharmaceutical example, we have a similar case if we compare a 10 mile jog to a set of ten 200m sprint repeats. The 10 mile jog will take maybe an hour or two, while the repeats can easily be done in under 20 minutes, and we’re looking at similar efficacy (and in fact, there may be the potential to get even more from the sprint repeats). This is a matter of potency; or, as it’s called in the fitness literature, intensity.

Of course, there are other things at play. Sprint repeats are far more uncomfortable than a 10 mile jog, intensity can be scary, and somewhere along the way, a large portion of our exercise culture decided erroneously that longer = better.

There is absolutely reason to include longer duration, lower intensity movement in your training. But to make it the basis or the priority of training is as foolish as choking down 20 pills when you could be taking just one.

- PS


  • For time:

    • 1 mile run

    • Rest 3 mins

    • 800m run

    • Rest 2 mins

    • 400m run

    • Rest 1 min

    • 200m run