In case you missed them, here are parts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 of this series.
Why CrossFit? - Efficiency
CrossFit classes run 60 minutes in length. That is plenty of time to complete a group warmup, perform some strength and/or skill training for the day, and then finish off with a short, intense bout of metabolic conditioning, or as most people like to call it, "cardio." Usually, we even have time in our classes to finish off with some cool down stretching and mobility work.
I see individuals all the time who come in and spend an hour or more in the gym looking at their phones, chatting with others, strolling to the water fountain, etc. Don't get me wrong, we have downtime, especially in between our strength sets, but the advantage to being a part of a class is that you know when you start your class and when you are done. Part of effective coaching involves running a class on time.
We can take this topic in a different direction, however, and talk about the efficiency of the exercises and workouts themselves. It is not too uncommon to see individuals in a regular gym setting go to the leg extension machine, and then the leg curl machine, and then the calf raise machine, and repeat. Sure, you may be hitting most of the muscles that make up your lower half, but if you were to do some heavy squats, your work time would be minimized and you would more effectively and efficiently target the musculature of your legs.
Steady-state cardio is another example of how individuals could greatly improve the efficiency of their workouts. Research has shown, time and time again, to be much more efficient when completed in short, extremely intense intervals, when compared to longer, steady-state efforts. A short, intense, 10 to 15 minute CrossFit WOD, for example, is far more beneficial to overall health and well-being than less-intense workouts that are twice their length.
CrossFit workouts use compound, functional movements to target as many muscles and joints as possible in every single movement. You can burn far more calories, increase your heart rate far more effectively, and become much more functional in your day to day life. Not only that, but the exercise selection and the style of workouts are suited for individuals of all ages, skill levels, and special needs.