Friday, September 7, 2012

Insanity, Interrupted

I've decided to shut down my Insanity experience for now for a couple of reasons.

A few days ago, I started noticing an absence of oomph, for lack of a better term, in my legs, which get brutalized during the Insanity workouts. 

I took one day off, then two, then three out of four. My legs still felt dead. 

And the workouts only get harder and longer from here.

Quite frankly, I just don't have time for it right now. I've got too many other things going on to accommodate the workouts and the time and rest needed it takes to recover from each workout. Although the workouts are only 40 minutes are so, it takes easily that long before you feel like you can function again afterwards. 

I suppose I feel leaner, although amazingly, the scale has not budged an ounce. I find this remarkable, given how intense the workouts are, given that up until my recent hiatus, I'd done heavy cardio and plyometric exercises virtually every day for the better part of a month. My shirt and shorts, even my shoes, were soaked with sweat at the end of each workout. 

OK, I'm rambling. 

Here's what you need to know about Insanity, if you were thinking about trying it. First, the Insanity materials include a bunch of disclaimers, including a warning to check with your physician before beginning the program.

You need to be in relatively good cardiovascular shape. This can't be the first thing you do after a long layoff from exercise. You won't make it through the workouts.

Upper body strength is nice, but it's the least important thing to bring to the table. 

You need a lot of free time. A couple hours per day for workouts and recovery. You also will need to sleep at least eight hours a night. I'll say this -- I slept damn good in these last weeks. The problem is that it's rare that I get 8 hours of sleep. I usually get by with 6 or so. It's not enough for Insanity. Eventually, your body will start to quit on you.

With kids, the day job, the writing at night, and all the other stuff, I just can't devote the recovery time needed to make it through. 

I'm going to switch back to another Beachbody program (the makers of Insanity) called 10-Minute Trainer. This set contains 5 different workouts, each 10 minutes in length, and you can do 1, 2, or 3 workouts per day, depending on your schedule. They're tough, but doable. Not nearly as crazy as Insanity.

I hate cutting this program short, but there are only so many hours in each day.

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