Does Insanity Really Work? Insanity Workout Review
Does Insanity Work for Insane Abs?
The Insanity Workout is pretty well described by its title. It’s freakin’ insane! The promise is to get you into insane shape in just 60 days.
This is a complete body workout with many compound moves that also work your core and abs.
But can it do a better job sculpting your body and especially your abs even better than using an ab machine?
The claim is that by the time you have gone through the entire Insanity workout schedule, you should be lean, ripped and “in the best shape of your life.” HEAD TO TOE!
But for that result you must follow Shaun T to a T to get “a year’s worth of results in just 60 days.”
I was just too tempted, so I bought it!
Coming up, I’ll share what’s in the box, a quick comparison to P90X, what I like & don’t like about Insanity, my final word and some feedback from others.
So be sure to scroll down far enough to see the excerpts from the MyFitnessPal forum where real users of this workout posted their Insanity results.
What You get in the Box of Insanity!
The complete Insanity program is delivered you on 10 DVD’s which are:
- Dig Deeper & Fit Test
- Plyometric Cardio Circuit
- Cardio Power & Resistance
- Cardio Recovery
- Pure Cardio & Cardio Abs
- Core Cardio & Balance
- Max Interval Circuit & Fit Test
- Max Interval Plyo
- Max Cardio Conditioning & Cardio Abs
- Max Recovery
I’ll describe more about each of these in greater detail later on in this article.
Now, unlike like it’s Beachbody cousin P90X – see two ad examples below:
There’s no need for equipment to do any of the Insanity workouts. It claims to have the best and most killer body-weight exercises and plyometric moves.
Or in other words…
The Insanity exercise routines are loaded with a variety of compound fitness moves, from burpees and football runs to jumping jacks and suicides.
As you move through the program, you’ll do increasingly intense interval workouts. With Insanity, the work-to-rest ratio is 3 minutes on with 30 seconds rest to keep you in the anaerobic zone for most of the workouts.
They call this their Max Interval training method, which in reality is different than HIIT (high intensity interval training). Max Intervals are harder! (at least it seemed that way to me).
The super short recovery time combined with really high intensity exercise makes for very challenging workouts. Because it’s quite intense, this is a workout that should appeal to an experienced exerciser looking to push their limits further.
And they really mean it when they say this is not for everybody – it really & truly isn’t. but more on that later.
About the Max Intervals Method
The routine has you going for 3 weeks of really high intensity workouts, followed by a week of recovery workouts.
For the first 30 days, you’ll do as many as 6 workouts per week but each with a different focus. power and resistance, pure cardio and circuits along with core workouts as well.
During the second half – or the last 30 days – you’ll follow the same schedule but your workouts will increase in duration and intensity.
Even though some different exercises are included to mix things up a bit, it remains the same format of: 3 to 5 high intensity exercises in a row for 3 minutes, with 30 second rest, then repeat the series 3 times – working harder each time.
All the workouts are led by Shaun T, a fitness expert and former track star.
He’s also the creator of this program.
Personally, I liked him because he’s a very motivating instructor, and he’s tough but without being a jack-ass!
I also liked that there’s a gym full of exercisers working out along with him. I know that’s not totally unique or special, but it feels different in this case because they’re in what looks like a school gym.
It makes you feel like you’re not alone, but actually part of a team.
So if you are not totally freaked out and scared away… read on to learn more about what’s good and not so good about this super fast, get you lean and in shape fitness program.
What Else is in the Box?
You already know this workout comes on 10 DVD’s. You will also get:
- Fit Test Card – which you do and fill out every 15 days
- Insanity Elite Nutrition Book – guides you on how to eat to get lean while keeping up with enough energy
- 60-day Poster Sized Calendar – to help you map out your workout schedule.
Insanity Workouts DVD’s in Detail:
- Dig Deeper Fit Test – OK, so having to do a fit test might be a clue that this workout is going to be demanding. You need to do this to track your fitness progress. The mirror and tape measure will tell you the rest. The fit test also gives you a sample of what’s to come in the workout series. During the test you’ll do as many reps as you can in 1 minute with a minute of rest in between. The test is approx half an hour and it’s a a workout all on it’s own.
- Plyometric Cardio Circuit – This is a 40-minute workout and it will kick your butt with explosive moves like power squats, ski jumps, push-ups and mountain climbers. Even the 10-minute warm up is tough! You’ll do a 5-minute stretch, then around 20 minutes of the intervals with the 30 second rests.
- Cardio Power & Resistance – Here’s another 40-minute workout that feels similar to the plyometric cardio circuit. Although it has the same format, it has you executing different exercises and with more of a focus on muscular endurance. The moves include hurdle jumps, power jump squats, squat kicks, dips, shoulder push-ups, and moving push-ups.
- Cardio Recovery & Max Recovery – There’s no actual cardio done here, but instead it’s a variety of planks, squats, lunges, push ups and stretches.
- Pure Cardio – OMG!!! this is 40 minutes of cardio with no rests. You’ll go from suicide drills, to switch kicks, to power jacks and frog jumps without taking any breaks. Even the back-up exercisers look like they’re going to cough up a lung and die.
- Cardio Abs – This 20-minute workout starts with high intensity cardio and ends with core moves. You hold the same position (a v-sit) for a number of variations followed by leg raises, planks and more.
- Core Cardio & Balance – This recovery workout includes a series of cardio exercises that get progressively difficult followed by standing core and conditioning drills such as knee lifts, extensions and arm moves.
- Max Interval Circuit – During the second month, your workouts jump to 60 minutes, following the familiar format, but with even harder moves such as side burpees, push-up jacks, plyometric lunges and more.
- Max Interval Plyo – By the time you make it to this 60-minute cardio palooza, you really will begin to think you are insane for doing this program. This one is all about plyometrics, which means you do a lot of powerful push-ups, squats and core exercises.
- Max Cardio Conditioning – This non-stop cardio workout (yup – all cardio without any breaks) is probably the toughest of all. he’s go you doing everything from sprinting to switch-kicks and suicide jumps to planks with punches.
What I Loved About This Workout:
- Structured Plan for Success – Many people fail to lose fat or get fit because they don’t have a plan and try to wing it. Not in this case. With this package everything is laid out for you. It comes complete with a nutrition plan, the fit tests, and the calendar with your workouts to make this simple to follow.
- Full Body Workout – the compound exercises get you toned from top to bottom in a short amount of time. You’ll lose fat all over, but especially from your most problematic areas.
- Effective for Abs – Do some research and you’ll find that the HIIT exercise method works really well to burn lots of calories. Insanity takes you further with MAX Interval Training which kills off a lot of fat while getting you fit and get it done in a shorter period of time. Bye, bye belly fat and hello six pack!
- Easy to Follow – Actually executing and surviving the workouts may not be easy, but following along and performing the moves is very straightforward. There’s no complicated choreography to learn. I loved that!
- No Equipment to Buy – all you need is a DVD player, a few square feet of space and a pair of good running shoes. No bands, no weights – nothing!
- Works for Men or Women – it doesn’t matter what your gender is… this will work just as well for guys and gals.
What is Not So Great About Insanity:
- Not for Everybody – Since most of the exercises are high impact, not everyone can do them – like people with bad knees. Even though Shaun T stresses safety and good form, doing high impact exercise means there’s a higher risk for injury.
- Repetition – Some people might find doing the same format day after day will become boring. Sure, the workouts feature different exercises, but for the most part it’s the 3 to 5 format.
- Diet Plan – If you want the best possible results, then you need to follow the diet plan too. Exercise is NEVER 100% of the fat loss solution. If you want excess fat gone, you need to ensure that you are not over-eating and revise your diet to be healthier. So it’s great that an eating plan comes as part of the package.
- No Weight Training – This is a cardio-based program but a truly complete exercise routine should include more resistance training. So if you are looking to lose fat and get toned- you will achieve that with this program. Yes, you will get firm and defined. But if you want to build up significant muscle mass, that’s something you’ll have to do on your own and outside of this program by lifting weights.
- More than 60 Days For Some – Look, if you are really obese, then be real with yourself and know that it will take you more than 60 days to look lean and ripped. It’s just not physically possible to lose the amount of fat required in 2 months.
- Cost – For some, the price seems expensive even though far too many folks would happily spend over $100 on fat burning supplements with no real guarantee that they are healthy or do work. Well, smart folks know enough to buy something that you can be used for years to come and that actually DOES deliver results (when you do the work). Besides, pills won’t make you fit. You’re gonna pay a price one way or another, so invest in a proven program that will make you feel & look better.
Yes, this workout is so challenging and intense it can kick your ass right out of the room – but not everyone responds to that.
Others have certain issues preventing them from even trying it.
You should also consult with your doctor before you begin any exercising or change in diet – as should anyone with a medical condition.
But if you’ve got nothing holding you back from diving in, the only question is are you willing to push yourself to new limits?
Are you really & truly motivated to FINALLY get into shape AND have awesome looking abs?
If you are – this workout CAN get you there without an ab machine. It will get you lean, get you totally toned while making you fitter in general. The only real question is – do you want it bad enough?
Insanity Results from Real People:
The image below is a snapshot of comments made in a forum where folks keep each other accountable and try to stick with their fitness and weight loss goals. The forum and people have no association with any workout company. They simply post about what works and what doesn’t.
Below is a sample from hundreds of positive responses in this particular thread. Note: clicking on the image below will take you to the forum.
Plus there are more than 3000 (as of update March 2016) reviewers on Amazon with over 73% of them giving this workout 5 stars. You can go there to read why if you like!
Many of the common comments from the 4 & 3 star reviews were regarding joint pain, knee pain and some who threw their back out.
So don’t buy this workout if you have joint problems or issues with doing high impact exercise!
But if you don’t have joint issues or other medical problems that would prevent you from doing this sort of workout… then why are you waiting?
Buy Insanity and get into the best shape of your life right now!