Are You Ready for the Insanity Workout Program?

The Insanity workout program is a fitness routine by Shaun T. It’s tough, but they promise results in 60 days if you stick with the program. They get into nutrition and provide a calendar for your workouts. Perhaps best of all, you don’t need any special equipment… although knee braces and braces for your other joints may not be a bad idea at all. And even if you’re overweight, you might be ready for the Insanity workout program.

How Do You Know?

You’re ready for the Insanity workout routine when you’re ready to commit to a serious physical challenge. As with any other change in your fitness routine, talk to your doctor first and be sure you don’t have any health issues which keep you from doing the routine. But if you’re healthy enough, a big part of your success will be determined by how committed you are to finishing this program.

If you’re generally out of shape, you may or may not be able to finish the exercises, especially at first. It’s up to you to decide if you want to keep pushing yourself to where you can do the whole thing each day. Don’t buy this if you aren’t ready for that push. The routine won’t do you any good if you don’t keep it up. Lots of people say this isn’t for beginners, but others say it depends on how willing you are to keep it up. Just remember that you can pause the DVD for a break when you need one. You can even keep repeating the early days each day until you get it, if you like.

What Are the Risks?

This is a serious, high impact exercise routine. Some people find it to be too hard on their back, knees or other joints. You can injure yourself doing this workout. I’m not a doctor, but I don’t think this is a good workout for people who already have joint issues.

I will state this very clearly, again. If you have joint issues, this really isn’t for you. It’s high impact, and any joints giving you trouble already may have more trouble after this routine. Pick something appropriate to what your body can handle. There are lower impact ways to get fit.

Proper form is important to avoiding injuries with most exercises. Really pay attention to how to do each one, and take the time to get it right, even if it slows down your routine. You can speed up as you figure out the form. They say “form over speed” and that is excellent advice.

Is the Insanity Workout Program Worth the Price?

This program is on the high side for exercise routines, but many people get good results. Just look at the reviews on Amazon if you want to see what real people think. Even some of the one star reviews admit that it’s a good workout problem – many of those reviews come from people who got injured while doing the workouts, a risk I’ve already mentioned. Even so, they’re far outnumbered by better reviews.

It comes down to you. Are you ready for a serious physical challenge? Are you going to stick with it? If you aren’t ready, don’t buy this workout. But if it looks good to you, go for it.

Should You Try Dance Aerobics?

Many people really don’t dance that much these days. This is probably especially true after getting married and having a family, just due to the sheer lack of free time.

Because of this many people feel very clumsy when they dance. So why do dance aerobics?

One of the simplest advantages is that many people find it fun. The music adds interest to an activity that might otherwise bore you. And moving to a rhythm encourages you to keep up with the group, to keep trying. It also just feels good.

As with any other aerobic exercise, dance aerobics is good for your metabolism. It gets your heart rate up and works your muscles. Some steps help with your balance. Continue reading “Should You Try Dance Aerobics?”

Where Is That Perfect Gym For You?

Joining a gym is a great way to get access to some really incredible exercise equipment. For some people it’s a real motivator too. But they’re expensive in a lot of cases, and a lot of people hardly ever go to the gym they pay so much to be a member at.

How do you pick the right gym? There are several factors to consider.

1. Are you comfortable there?

If you’re just getting started, will it make you too self conscious to go to a gym where it seems like everyone has been working out heavily for years and years? The right atmosphere makes it much easier to go to a particular gym.

Some gyms are set up just for women, such as Curves. Some have rules against grunting as you work out. There are many factors to consider.

2. The right cost.

Many people have to think budget when they pick a gym. If you need low cost, I understand the YMCA has great prices. But if you want a different gym and cost doesn’t matter so much, pick one based on other criteria.

3. Your level of commitment.

If you aren’t committed to going to the gym, don’t bother joining one. Many people keep paying and paying for no benefit because they never go.

You may be able to increase your level of commitment by finding a buddy to workout with. Join the same gym or even different gyms if you’re just going to compare stats, and really push yourself to make it work.

4. Distance.

If you have to drive too far, will you really go? This is related to your commitment level, but the a long drive can mess with even the most committed.

5. The contract.

Read the contract carefully. If things don’t work out, some gyms have contracts that are utterly miserable to get out of.

Some gyms also have different levels of access, depending on your contract. You may be able to visit other locations, which is very useful on vacation. You may have access to childcare. Make sure the contract offers the features that you will value most.

There’s no one right answer for which gym you will be comfortable at. As you consider gyms, think about what it is you want from them. Take a tour and see if they have a trial period before you have to sign a contract. There’s nothing like experience to tell you if the gym is the one you want.

Can You Be Fit and Fat?

This is one of those things many people argue about. Some insist you can’t, and rely heavily on BMI as an indicator. But from what I understand of it, the BMI is really not an indicator of health or fitness.

I’ve long felt that one can be both fit and fat. I’m not a medical or fitness professional, just someone with a lot of opinions on the matter, but there it is.

You can see an indication of that in this abstract in JAMA. Fitness was the best mortality predictor, not weight.

apple on scale

That really doesn’t surprise me.

I’m not fat, except maybe by Hollywood standards. 5 foot 7 inches, 140 pounds. A BMI calculator puts me at 21.9, or midrange normal. But my sisters would generally fall into the overweight or obese sections of the BMI chart. But I think at least 2 of them are more fit than I am. It’s not that I’m in that poor of shape; it’s just that I suspect they’re in better shape.

To me this is something you should think about, especially if your New Year’s Resolution is to lose weight. A better resolution, perhaps, is to simply get more fit.

This is hard to deal with, especially when you go out into the real world, and all they see is fat. My sisters and I have had frank talks about this very topic. Back when we were all single, I had the advantage of being the thin one. But none of us were that worried about weight. We were having too much fun.

As you work towards your fitness goals, do your best to remember that fitness goals are in many ways better for you than weight goals. It’s not an easy change to make, but it could help you make more achievable goals.