The Insanity workout is a high energy high impact cardio program from beachbody, the same company behind P90X. I’ve reviewed other DVD exercise products before, but Insanity is definitely different. Weather it’s better or worse than other products depends on what you are looking to achieve. I will say that Insanity is a good name for this workout.
When I first did Supreme 90 Day, I remember being amazed that I could sweat that much. I had never done anything that intense and was surprised how physically demanding it was. When I moved on to P90X it was a little more intense, but I was better prepared. I knew going in that Insanity would be a challenge. But, once again I found myself standing in my living room astonished by how much sweat my body can produce. This program pushes you so hard that it becomes difficult to continue as it is hard to see with ridiculous amounts of sweat pouring down your face. Also you may find yourself becoming nauseous, dizzy, close to blacking out. These things happen because Insanity pushes you as far as your body can handle. The problem is that you can easily over-do it. If you use this program, you have to know how to push yourself but also how to stop before pushing yourself to injury.
If used correctly, this program is excellent for endurance building, fat burning and overall fitness, but it is very difficult and challenging especially for beginners. Also keep in mind that this is a cardio program. If you are looking to build muscle, Insanity is not the best option. It does include a wide assortment of exercises and programs to work different areas of your body in different ways incorporating some strength training and ab work, but primarily Insanity works as a calorie burner. One thing that is great about This DVD set, is that it starts with the “Dig Deeper & Fit Test” disk which you can use to track your progress. What’s cool about this is that it gives you a group of exercises to perform your 1 minute max to determine your initial fitness level. After weeks of the program you go back to the fit test and see how much you have improved. Keeping track like this is a great way to stay motivated.
The next disk goes into a “Plyometric Cardio Circuit.” This one is a lot different from what I would expect from a plyo workout. It has a lot more run/jug than I was looking for, but it is definitely intense. I specifically recall sweating like crazy, breathing heavy, feeling like I was going to die and hearing him say “We’re still warming up.” After this, we move on to the “Cardio Power & Resistance” disk. This is the biggest strength training part of Insanity. This is where your arms and chest are going to get a workout. It takes the fast paced cardio circuit and applies it to pushups and other muscle building exercises. Essentially, you’re doing large numbers of pushups and squats at high speeds. The next disk is Insanity’s recovery DVD. Insanity is so intense that even the recovery is a workout. Next the program offers an ab workout that is definitely hard hitting, but seems to lack a little in terms of the abdominal exercises included.
Halfway through the program, Insanity kicks up the intensity of the already challenging workout. The remaining disks consist of “Max” versions of the cardio circuits, intervals and strength training you’ve become familiar with so far. The fact is that the average person won’t come close to doing the “max” workouts as many won’t complete the first half of insanity. Really though, this is a plus because it means the program is suitable for people who are already pretty fit, while those who are much less athletically inclined will struggle but will also grow. One thing that’s great about Insanity is that it offers a lot of room for a lot of growth.
Burns a ton of calories
Good variety of exercises
Good for different fitness levels
Somewhat lacking in strength training
Could have better ab program
Not for everybody.
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