Insanity Work Out | Week 1 Review

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I remember watching the advert on TV for Insanity which showed jaw-dropping before and afters.  I completely forgot about the workout regime made by Shaun T himself until my best friend recently mentioned it to me again.  Out of determination (and desperation), I decided to give it a go because if I can get a year's worth of working out progress within the span of 60 days then why not?  Thus, to hold myself accountable, I wanted to post a weekly update or roundup for the duration of this schedule.  

At the start of the programme, you undergo a 'fit test' to see whether or not you can actually do insanity at a level that will get you results.  This fit test is taken every two weeks and takes about 25 minutes to complete. Here are my results:  

Switch Kicks: 110
Power Jacks: 60
Power Knees: 104
Power Jumps: 45
Globe Jumps: 8
Suicide Jumps: 25
Push up Jacks: 10
Low Plank Oblique: 60

*You have 1 minute per exercise*

Obviously they're not the most impressive - especially in comparison to the individuals in the video.  However, I felt that these were a good foundation and starting point for me to continue on with the programme. 

Each week for the first month (30 days) is the same, with Sunday being the rest day. A majority of the exercises comprise of jumping and plyometric movement to help with cardio and strength.  For the most part, each exercise is about 30-45 minutes long with a 9-12 minute warm up at the start.  The warm up proved very difficult for me initially because, although it is low intensity, it is 9-12 minutes straight with no breaks.  In addition, after each warm up you have a 6-7 minute stretching session which I am too grateful for. 

Except for the 'pure cardio' work out, each workout consists of 2-4 minute circuits with a 30 second water break which does not last long enough.  The pure cardio work out is an intense 15 minute straight without a break.  However, during all of the exercises, you are advised to take breaks whenever necessary for yourself and go at a pace that is comfortable for you.  Despite this, never pause the video (unless you need to use the bathroom) because the work outs were not designed in that manner.  

Here are a few things I realised after completing the first week of Insanity. 

1. You get more flexible.  Stretching for 6-7 minutes a day will really help stretch out your legs, arms, and back.  I am always super lazy when it comes to doing my stretches before and after exercising because I think it's boring.  Therefore, I could never imagine yoga as being 'relaxing'.  The moves seem to be inspired by typical yoga movements and alongside improving flexibility, it aids in balance and strength.  Hopefully by the end of this programme I'll be able to do the splits! 

2. It takes a while to cool down afterwards.  I didn't believe this to be true because usually it takes me about 5-10 minutes post-exercise to catch my breath and cool down.  Nonetheless, I end up looking flushed and feeling battered for 30 minutes plus after finishing one Insanity work out.  The minimal breaks really takes a toll because I usually do circuits and wait to catch my breath before starting the next one (with regards to the Bikini Body Guide by Kayla Itsines).  

3. Do not skip the 'cardio recovery' day.  I was tempted initially but wanted to give this programme a fair shot. The cardio recovery consists of a 30 minute stretching session with some muscle activating movements such as squats and leg raises.  This really helps with flexibility and muscle soreness from the work out days before hand.  It's also a great break from the jumping. 

4. Stay hydrated during the work out.  This will help with the exercise but be sure to take baby sips during the break instead of large gulps.  

5. Your body can do much more than you think.  During the work out, it is so easy for me to want to take a break every time I feel discomfort.  But the mind really is the biggest obstacle.  I always give myself motivating chants when it's getting too tiresome to keep pushing forward.  I am far from an athletic or fit individual.  I don't have a toned body and am literally your average joe.  Nevertheless, determination to make the 30-45 minutes worth every second is enough for me to finish each circuit without a break.  Granted I may not go at high-speed but I can feel myself gradually gaining more confidence in my body's ability.  

6. The work outs may feel harder as you go along but that's not the case.  This is actually just due to your muscles getting sore-er as time progresses.  I don't think I feel particularly fitter after this one week but I have pushed the limits of my body.  Other workouts now seem like a piece of cake.  Therefore, do not get bogged down on the feeling of regressing throughout the week.  Go as hard as you can each work out without extreme discomfort and take breaks as you require but if you can push for longer, go for it.  

7. It's okay to miss one work out.  If you missed a work out, don't worry too much.   You can substitute that day as your rest day and carry on as normal so your next rest day would be after completing your allocated Friday work out instead.  If you do skip more than one consider re-doing the week but there are more helpful articles available discussing what one should do in these situations.  Personally, I do not think these work outs are too hard to adhere to because it's all planned out for you.  It is a fixed amount of time and it can be done in the comfort of your home.  Like I mentioned earlier, the mind is the biggest obstacle.  Getting the motivation to get up and do an intense work out requires more strength and time.

That's my week one summary!  I hope this is of use to you guys and although I haven't seen any drastic changes in my body, I do feel like I have more appreciation for what it is able to do.  Hopefully I have more exciting news for the next Insanity work out review as I will be doing the fit test. 
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