Training intensity - what is it? How to calculate and how to increase?

Training intensity - what is it? How to calculate and how to increase?

Training intensity - what is it? How to calculate and how to increase?
Training intensity - what is it? How to calculate and how to increase?

To increase the intensity of the workout to increase table is not enough to take a heavy weight and working to enhance the music. Mental attitude is important, but in order to increase the load, it is necessary to combine the exercises in a special way and to adjust the load.

How to calculate the intensity of your bodybuilding workout - and how to increase it properly to accelerate muscle growth ? In the article below we will talk about why you need to train hard, how to make your workout more intense - and how not to get stuck in a dead end.

//  Training intensity - what is it?


The intensity of the training is the effort that the athlete puts during training. If the workout is easy, the intensity of the workout is considered low. Conversely, the more difficult the training, the higher its intensity.

Over time, the muscles get used to the same load and stop growing. To progress in the growth of mass and strength indicators, it is necessary to regularly increase the intensity. There are different ways to do this. For example, you can take a heavier working weight or do more repetitions in a set with your usual weight.

The same goes for weight loss circuit training. High-intensity activity maximizes calorie expenditure and stimulates fat burning. In this case, to increase the load, you can increase the duration of the workout or reduce the rest time between exercises.

How to calculate?

The simplest method for determining the intensity of training is the mathematical summation of workloads. For example, if you have performed 4 sets of exercises weighing 20 kg and 10 repetitions, then the total intensity is defined as 4 x 10 x 20 = 800.

This method of calculation is recommended, especially when training to increase weight, when the rest between approaches is maximum (and varies from 1 to 2 minutes). However, if the goal is to draw terrain or increase endurance, the mathematical formula will not work.

Intensity enhancement techniques

Workout exercises for intensity

There are many different ways to make your workout more difficult. We will look at the safest and most effective methods to increase the load. All of them are applied in compliance with the correct technique of exercises:

1. Increasing the working weight

Here everything is simple - you need to regularly increase your work weight during exercise. Imagine that in your first workout, you shake 50 kg of bar for 10 repetitions in three sets. The exercise is done technically and without pulling. In the next workout you will have to increase the weight of the barbell by 5 kg and try to do 3 sets of 10 repetitions. You may not have the strength to do 10 reps at once in each set.

In the first approach you will do 10 times, in the second 9, and in the final only 7. It must be so. At the next workout you will again take a barbell weighing 55 kilograms and you have already done 10, 10, 8. Only when you have managed to do 10 repetitions in each approach with the right technique, you can increase the working weight.

2. Reduce rest time

If you reduce the rest time between sets, then the exercise will be more difficult, which means that the training will be more intense. Remember that rest is needed primarily to restore breathing, not to relax muscles. Therefore, while resting, focus on your feelings. If your breathing has calmed down, it's time to start the exercise.

3. Supersets

Superset training is the performance of two or more exercises without a break, one after the other. They are of two types: for one muscle group and for antagonistic muscles. In the first case, you do exercises to maximize the load on a muscle. For example, first do a sitting press with dumbbells and then sideways. Both movements are aimed at pumping the deltoid muscles.

Muscle antagonist supersets are combinations of muscle exercises that perform opposite functions. An example of such a superseries would be curling a biceps barbell in combination with a French triceps pump.

The superset is useful for increasing the intensity of training and overcoming stagnation. Muscle tissue will not be ready for the new load and thus will receive a stimulus for growth.

3. Drop kits

This is another popular way to load a muscle group and achieve maximum hypertrophy. The point is to reduce the working weight in one set as muscle fatigue progresses.

Suppose you start squatting weighing 32 pounds. As soon as you feel that you can not continue to perform the exercise with the right technique, then take a dumbbell and squat again without rest until muscle failure occurs.

4. Forced repetitions

You need a partner to do forced repetitions. It helps a little when you can't lift weights independently and technically. For example, you make a bench and you have no strength until the end of the set. With the help of a partner, you can do 1-2 more repetitions to give the muscles more stress.

In essence, forced repetitions are drop sets. Only the weight remains the same, and the reduction of the load is thanks to the help of a partner. The technique of forced repetition is also used to achieve muscle failure.

Effects on testosterone levels

Exercise and testosterone levels

Exercises with maximum intensity lead to overtraining and exhaust the central nervous system. And if each of your workouts is conducted at the limit of strength, then the body does not have time to recover and begins to work for wear.

As a result, muscles stop growing and strength decreases - along with testosterone levels. That is why it is only necessary to periodically increase the intensity of training. This will allow you to give your muscles maximum load at the right time and then recover.

For example, for three weeks you train according to your usual model, and in the fourth week you increase the load and switch to supersets or play sets. After a hard training week you give the body time to recover and for the fifth week you train with an intensity of 40-50% of the maximum. Then the training cycle is repeated. This is the simplest example of periodizing bodybuilding workouts.


Gradually increasing the intensity of training is a prerequisite for the growth of muscle mass and strength. In this case, you do not have to chase heavy workloads. Increasing the load should be done in strict compliance with the correct exercise technique. Only in this case it is possible to advance in power sports.