Why Your Coaches Are Always Telling You To Scale Down The Weight and Go Faster

Have you ever wondered why so many coaches sound like a broken record when explaining the
metcon? You might hear a lot of, “go lighter, go faster”. This is intentional. As coaches, we want
you to get the desired stimulus of the workout (and subsequent benefits). While the strength
portions are programmed for athletes to add weight and work towards those heavy stimuli, the
metcon is all about speed and intensity. Intensity in CrossFit is directly relatable to power. So,
during many metcons we are looking to create a higher power output. Power is defined as
(force x distance)/time. For most metcons, the distance is preset so the only factors that can be
controlled by an athlete are the force (weight you are lifting) or the time (how long it takes to
do the programmed work). Because time is in the denominator, you will create more
power–mathematically speaking– by dividing by a smaller number or doing the work faster. If
you add more force, i.e., more weight, then the numerator gets larger, but the time is also likely
going to get longer, which may cancel out the net increase in power due to the added weight.
In fact, the end result may be no increase in power at all. So, next time you are wondering what
weight to use to use for the metcon, consider asking yourself how you will generate the most

-Ani Monroe, Group Fitness Coach