Mix it up: Guest Post on INSANITY

Woot! Woot! we have our very first guest post, courtesy of Donna’s friend Denis (spelled correctly) Sheehan.  Denis wanted to let you all know about his experience mixing up his workout.  (Denis also has an online zine:  Askew Reviews.  You can find it here, http://www.askewreviews.com/mixitupAny complaints, you can refer to them to Denis.  We will be back in coming days with our regularly scheduled programing!


I run. I run a lot, compared to some. When the weather is nice, I typically run 4-5 times a week with the distance falling between 5-13 miles (usually 7 miles on average) beginning and ending with three sets of 45 second sprints and 15 seconds rest in between.

And, although I enjoy the solitude of the act, I do not run out of passion or love of the sport. Instead, I run to counter balance my lifestyle and for the sake of my health. I do watch what I eat, but I do not diet. I also do not go to a gym so come winter my running routine suffers and I tend to put on five to ten pounds.

Around Christmas time I was visiting my sister and brought up how I would like to do something to offset my lack of running during the winter months.  She gave me her INSANITY discs.insanity I have never done any kind of interval, Crossfit, aerobic, yoga, or Pilates types of workout and had no idea what to expect.  If you’re considering beginning INSANITY or another INSANITY type work out, you might benefit from knowing a bit about my experience.

On January 5, 2015, I popped in the first scheduled DVD, “Fit Test.”  “Fit Test” was tough considering I really thought my running history would help me along. And while I am sure it did, this type of workout is absolutely a completely different ballgame than running. During my first week there were a few times I was on my hands and knees sucking wind so hard I was practically vacuuming my rug.suckingwind

As a beginner to this type of workout, I continuously found myself looking at the tv to see the stretches and exercises so it was awkward and my form lacked. Over the past few workouts I have become more familiar with the stretches and exercises, so I am getting better at concentrating on workout rather than learning it. I’m still working on my form, but it continues to improve. I also found I often lowered my chin into my chest while working out which hindered my breathing. Since correcting this, I can feel a big difference in my oxygen intake. Learn from me, newbie. Learn from me. I also realized I sometimes loudly-and involuntarily-whistle while heavily exhaling, something I’ve never experienced.

Another issue I had was focusing on keeping my core tight and working from my core as I’ve never done this. It took me about six workouts to actually understand how to target my core and now things feel like it’s all starting to make sense.  (You can get information on core work here http://www.swansnatchlove.com/?p=261)

What blew me away the most about these workouts was I’d start an exercise thinking I was going to nail it (not out of cockiness…the exercises look simple), but after 20 seconds the burning kicks in, the sweat pours, and the breathing intensifies. It’s crazy (or insanity, said the company man) and very surprising. Before I started, I was doing 100 pushups almost daily,  yet the INSANITY exercises that include pushups, as found on the Plyometric Cardio Circuit disc for example, kick my butt!

The workouts are pretty intense and I feel that good workout “pain” all over my body, including places I didn’t even know existed. Of course, this is due to my body using way more muscles than just running muscles. Now that I know what I’ve been missing, I am now wondering what I’m missing with other interval, Crossfit, aerobic, yoga, and Pilates workouts.

If you’re considering starting INSANITY, here are my tips:  from one newbie to another.

  1. This workout system is also a way to measure your progress. I don’t write down my stats. I’ll gage myself by how I feel and look over the 60 day program. But you may want to have some paper and writing instrument handy. Also, count the number of reps from the get go.
  2. Make sure you have enough room before starting because there is some jumping to the left, right, back, front, and up (I never thought about the height of my ceiling light until I smashed mine with my hand while doing vertical jumps). My first time was rather cramped.hithead
  3. Though you will get used to the moves, I suppose scanning the DVDs beforehand can only help.
  4. Have plenty of water close by. You may need to take a quick break during the exercising…and the Insanity water breaks are only 30 seconds. You do not want to waste time running to the kitchen for water…or to the toilet if you’re a dog.
  5. I always seem to find myself drifting toward the television and while I’d like to think it’s because of the crush I have on one of the female participants, it’s more likely because I stink at jogging in place. Constantly having to correct my position is annoying and I advise against it. One time I drifted so tight to the tv, I made the DVD skip and start over…boo!
  6. Everything will feel awkward at first. However, if you concentrate it will come to you. Do not get frustrated.
  7. Do not underestimate any of the stretches or exercises.
  8. See number seven.

5 thoughts on “Mix it up: Guest Post on INSANITY

  1. Pingback: Boy on Girls (or a Guys take on CrossFit benchmark wods) |

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