Susan Chung is another new trainer for me! And I have found yet another one I really like! I can’t believe the new gems I am discovering. Susan doesn’t have a lot of workouts for me to glom, but glom them I will! Susan creates kickboxing workouts. I don’t know the composition of the other 3 workouts she currently has available, but Rapid Fire 3 is made up of kickboxing combos, a tabata segment, strength work and core work. And of course a warm up and stretch. There is also a heavy bag bonus. I don’t have a heavy bag, nor do I have any intention of ever getting one, so this will not be reviewed. However, I often do heavy bag bonuses using 2 pound weighted gloves so I will probably do this one that way at some point. When I do, I will update this review. (**Scroll down for update)
I wore 1 pound weighted gloves when doing this workout and I found it pretty intense. Susan had a crew of 4; 3 women and one man. The man (Chris) was doing the more advanced option and one of the women (Kitty) was doing low impact modifications. The kickboxing in this workout is fairly advanced and fast paced. She refers to it as high steady state and that is what it is–your heart rate will get up there. Susan isn’t the best at cueing. You do everything at the same pace–no slow examples of anything. She throws a kick or punch combo at you with no warning. However, all combos are taught in layers and none of the individual moves are overly complex, so you pick it up quickly. I had no problem following her. The kickboxing takes up the bulk of the workout–approx 29 minutes. Then you have one tabata cycle. It is done in the traditional tabata format–high intensity move for 20 seconds with a 10 second recovery. She does 4 drills then you repeat them on the other side of the body for a total of 8 drills. It lasts about 5 minutes. This isn’t the most intense tabata drill I’ve ever done, but it does the job. The reason for this is because she incorporates kicks into the drills. Now kicks do make cardio more intense, but due to the fact the moves are somewhat compound–the kicks are alternated with moves like air jacks and squat jumps–your heart rate isn’t getting as high as if you were doing non-stop plyo. Nevertheless, it’s still an intense little segment and I liked it a lot.
Next comes the strength work. As with any strength workout, the level all depends on the amount of weight you are lifting. Susan and crew are all using different weights, but they use the same weight throughout the entire strength portion. Susan is using 7.5 pound dumbbells, Chris is using 10 pound dumbbells and the rest of the women are using 5 pound dumbbells. This doesn’t work for me. I need to change my dumbbells to fit the exercise. The strength work is actually pretty decent for such a short section and she hits all upper body muscle groups. But change your dumbbells to fit the exercise! You don’t do a lot of reps and only one set of each, so use the heaviest dumbbell you can lift for the exercise! The training portion ends with a some good core work. I especially liked the first exercise that is done on your knees with one dumbbell in each hand. You lean side, to side, touching the dumbbells to the ground for 50 reps. In another exercise she has you pushing your fingers into your obliques to feel them as you are performing the exercise. The cool things is–I did feel them! And they were bunching up quite a bit! I have a lot of ab muscle!
***I finally did the heavy bag bonus with 2 pound weighted gloves. It is 14 minutes long and it is just Susan. It is made up of punching and kicking combos but I felt they were lower intensity than the workout itself. Not low intensity, just lower. The real gem of this bonus is how she ends it–with mat work. You get on all 4s and you start kicking the bag–basically doing old school lower body work. And man, I felt it after all the kicking/lower body work in the workout! She burns your glutes out!
That’s the overview. Now on to the breakdown.
Rapid Fire 3 is 65 minutes long; 6 minute warm up, 53 minute training period and 7 minute stretch. Training period breakdown: kickboxing 29 minutes, tabata 5 minutes, strength 10 minutes and core work 9 minutes. The Bonus Heavy Bag is 14 minutes long. The kickboxing section is set up as 4 blocks in the chapter section, but each block doesn’t equal one combo. For the first 3 blocks, in each block you get a long combo followed by a shorter combo. The forth block is unique in both the combo structure and the moves. It has a very challenging move where you kick front into a front lunge and touch the ground with your fingertips then lunge back and touch the ground with your finger tips–and keep repeating. Instead of a shorter combo, it ends with punch drills. She gives you a brief stretch then you move onto the tabata. Here are the moves. You do as many of these mini combos as you can in 20 seconds: 1. squat and touch the floor with fingertips and jump, squat and touch the floor with fingertips then crescent kick. 2. turn to the side; squat and touch the floor, then jump turn 180 degrees and round house kick. 3. star jack then front kick right then left. 4. front kick, lunge back and jump while in lunge. Repeat all 4 for a total of 8 tabata HIITs.
Next is the strength work. You do 10 reps of each exercise or combo.
1. Front lunge with a lateral raise and knee raise at the top.
2. Lateral raises only.
3. Squat with overhead press.
4. Back lunge with a hammer curl and an outward bicep curl at the top.
5. Overhead press and lateral raise combo.
6. Bend over and put dumbbells on ground and stand up straight with arms over head (Chris jumps during this part), bend back over and pick up dumbbells and, while bent, do a fast triple back row.
7. Get on knees with dumbbells at your sides and do a kneeling chest press, bringing dumbbells up in front of you.
8. Lay on back; do a chest press and at top of move twist so palms facing and do two chest flies.
9. Two slow alternating chest presses followed by 4 fast alternating chest presses.
10. Lying overhead tricep extensions.
11. Alternate tricep press and lying overhead tricep extensions.
The workout ends with 9 minutes of core work and the stretch.
Rock Steady (warm up, steady state cardio, stretch) 40 minutes
Rock Steady Rock Hard (warm up, steady state cardio, weights, stretch) 50 minutes
Rock Steady Rock Hard Core (warm up, steady state cardio, weights, core, stretch) 60 minutes
Rock Steady Blast (warm up, steady state cardio, tabata, stretch) 44 minutes
Rock Steady Rock Hard Blast (warm up, steady state cardio, weights, tabata, stretch) 54 minutes
Rock Steady Core blast (warm up, steady state cardio, tabata, core, stretch) 53 minutes
Rock Hard Core Express (warm up, weights, core, stretch) 32 minutes
Blast Trio (warm up, tabata, steady state cardio, core, stretch) 55 minutes
Blast Rock Hard Core (warm up, tabata, weights, core, stretch)36 minutes
Blast Core Express (warm up, tabata, core, stretch) 28 minutes
Blast Rock Hard Express (warm up, tabata, weights, stretch) 27 minutes
Bonus Hard Core Bag (warp up, heavy bag bonus, core, stretch) 35 minutes
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