Body Beast

Body_BeastMy review posts have slowed down, but that is because I have been doing the Body Beast program. I’m doing the entire program, so this review will not post until I am finished. First, what is Body Beast?

Body Beast is a Beachbody Fitness Program. Beachbody’s website describes it as the most advanced, muscle defining, resistance training program designed to get you completely ripped and chiseled in just 90 days. It is created/led by trainer Sagi Kalev. The base system contains 12 workouts, a workout/nutrition guide and workout calendar. There are also 3 bonus workouts: the Tempo DVD which contains two additional workouts and the Lucky 7 DVD, which contains a 23 minute total body metabolic strength workout.

What do you need for this program? Required is a variety of dumbbells. Now, more than that is needed but you have choices. If you have a weight bench, barbell and pull up bar then you have everything you need. If you don’t, you can substitute a stability ball (and sometimes a chair when a stable surface is required) for the bench, resistance bands for the pull up bar and just use dumbbells when the barbell is used. He always has two crew members with him and one of them will always be doing the “limited equipment” option. Additionally, the program requires supplementation. Now, supplementation isn’t essential, but if you are trying to build muscle, drinking a daily protein shake (ideally after your workout) that includes BCAAs (Branch Chain Amino Acids) should be included. Now, of course, Beachbody offers their brand of supplements to use with this program (a whole line of them!), but you don’t have to buy them from Beachbody and you certainly don’t need the vast amount of supplements they recommend. But that is just my opinion. I am not a Beachbody “coach” so I’m not all about pushing Beachbody products. I buy my protein powder elsewhere.

In addition, there is little point in doing a program such as this without also doing the work in the kitchen and I do not mean that from a weight loss point-of-view (as in cutting calories so you actually lose weight rather than expecting exercise alone to do all the magic) but from a muscle building perspective. You need adequate protein so your muscles will repair themselves and adequate good carbs (as in not refined/processed/sugar carbs) to power you through these workouts. You also do not want to cut calories to a weight loss level–otherwise your body will catebolize your muscle tissue. However, that does not mean you need to eat excessive calories (unless you are trying to bulk up–which most women are not!), but do eat at maintenance level and make sure you eat plenty of protein and good carbs so your body builds lean muscle mass and pulls energy from carbs and body fat rather than muscle tissue. It is something of a balancing act which I did not particularly enjoy. I always try eat adequate protein, but I still tend to eat a lot of carbs; so leaning my diet even more toward protein without eating excessive calories was no fun. And in the end I was successful for the most part. I didn’t gain or lose any weight, but I did build significant muscle.

Body-Beast-Schedule-LeanBody Beast comes with two rotation calendars–Lean and Huge. They aren’t dramatically different. There is one cardio workout in the entire program and you use it once a week in most of the Lean rotation (twice a week during the last month). In the Huge rotation you only use it in the final 3 weeks. I did the Lean Rotation but I also supplemented it with additional cardio and yoga/stretching. I did try to stay true to the idea of Body Beast by doing less cardio than I am accustomed to doing, but still–once a week is just inadequate for me. So I kept my cardio sessions short–30 minutes or less and of the HIIT variety. I also don’t normally spend the amount of time I think I should on yoga/flexibility, so since this program is so focused on strength training, I decided to give flexibility more focus.  Sagi does not stretch you out very much, so I do feel more was necessary. Finally, his workouts are shorter than what I am accustomed to, so at different times I added some additional “add-ons” to round my morning workouts to an hour. I will post my rotation below, which will show what I added on and where. I actually did 3 fitness programs simultaneously, with Body Beast being the core rotation, Weider Ruthless supplementing to round my workouts out to an hour and I followed the PiYo rotation in the afternoons as my doubles workout.

Body-Beast-3Sagi is a real body builder who has won bodybuilding competitions in Israel (he is Israeli). He has a degree in fitness and nutrition, and has trained bodybuilders. So he has the background for this program. Before I get into anymore information on the program, I want to give my opinion of Sagi and the program in general. First of all, Sagi is irritating. He just is. This must be how some people feel about Tony Horton and Jillian Michaels (they both have their critics from a personality standpoint–people find them irritating, but I don’t). However, he has created excellent workouts and I do not find him so irritating that I don’t want to do his workouts; but neither did I enjoy his onscreen presence. I do love most of the Body Beast workouts and am happy to do them in spite of his sometimes annoying behavior. I will qualify that with–he is not annoying 100% of the time. However, sometimes he is mean to his crew and he uses the word “beast” excessively, along with a few other irritating things. Now, the meanness to his crew is probably all in good fun, but after doing each workout many times (and listening to it even more since my husband was also doing Body Beast), I don’t find his mean “humor” amusing. Just irritating.

The workouts themselves, however, are excellent. In fact, the back workouts in particular are some of the best I have ever done and the leg workouts are brutal. I had a lot of soreness after these workouts. I also like the length. For serious weightlifting I am accustomed to Cathe’s hour+ long workouts. Sagi’s are shorter, with the longest being 50 minutes and the shortest 29 minutes (that’s not counting the Abs workout, or Lucky 7, which is a different animal). This gave me a lot of flexibility which I like (as you will see by looking at my rotation below).

body-Beast-blocksThe workouts are categorized in 3 ways: Build, Bulk and Beast. Also, the calenders are broken down into 3 Phases–but those phases don’t correspond to the workout categories, exactly. The first phase is called the Build phase and it uses Build and Beast workouts. The second phase is called the Bulk phase and it uses primarily Bulk workouts and some Beast workouts if you are doing the Lean rotation. And finally, the third phase is the Beast phase and it combines all 3 categories: Build, Bulk and Beast.

I am going to handle this review a little differently than usual. I will breakdown the workouts by categories, note how long the workout is as well as my thoughts on it; however I will not be listing each exercise as I usually do. The reason for this is that Beachbody creates workout cards for their strength workouts and makes them available to the public for free. The workout cards list every exercise and how many sets/reps you do. So I will just put the link to the workout cards right here: Body Beast workout cards. Every workout’s workout card is contained in this one PDF file. Just open it up and every strength workout is laid out for you–exercises, sets and reps. Now, the Cardio and Abs workouts do not have workout cards, so I will break them down below. In addition, I know I am not the only fitness blogger/reviewer out there. I found someone else who did an excellent blog post/review on this program. Her blog is called Dumbbells and Diapers and here is her Body Beast review. She not only breaks down each workout but has pictures of herself performing the workouts and screenshots of the actual Body Beast workouts contained in each review (as well as Sagi quotes). I referenced her reviews when preparing to do a Body Beast workout for the first time to prepare myself. But, of course, I need to review it here because I need to have my own thoughts to refer back to when I want to return to Body Beast in the future.

Before we go any further, lets talk results. I completed 13 weeks of Body Beast; was it all it claimed to be? Yes, it was, for both me and my husband. We both increased both muscle mass and muscle definition. The results were visible. It could have been better for me had I done a better job with my diet. I did stay true to consuming enough protein, but I still splurged nearly every weekend, so I never lost any fat. Had I eaten a cleaner diet 98% of the time, my results would really have been impressive. But as it stands, I am pleased. As for my husband, he did increase his protein (but not as much as he should have–I ate more protein than he did!) and he did not clean his diet up at all. However, he built muscle everywhere. And, like me, had he cleaned his diet up and consumed more protein, his results would have been even more impressive than they are (and they are pretty impressive, btw).

Build: Build workouts utilize single sets, drop sets, super sets and giant sets; and each exercise is usually done in an upward pyramid fashion. In fact, you will see “pyramids” a lot in Body Beast, though Sagi doesn’t call them that. In a pyramid, the weight you lift increases as your reps decrease; or the opposite, your weight decreases as your reps increase. In the Build workouts, you only pyramid up (weight increases as reps decrease); but in Bulk you will do the whole pyramid–up then back down. Both Build and Bulk focus on hypertrophy, but Build is laying the ground work for more the more challenging techniques used in Bulk.

Chest & Triceps 49 minutes: I don’t have a lot to say about this workout. It’s tough and does the job. It’s really challenging–especially the giant set that ends with decline push ups. I was doing some serious grunting as I pushed those things out. I don’t feel that he hits the triceps as hard as he does the chest, but they still get worked adequately. I suffered both chest and tricep DOMS after doing this workout.

For this workout you need the bench or a stability ball and dumbbells. No barbell used.

Back & Biceps 50 minutes: I love this workout. It works my back so well–I feel it all day and often have DOMS. It hits every muscle in your back. It does a good job on your biceps, too, btw–but the back is the real highlight of this workout. I did not do pull ups for this workout. I used the heaviest band (black band) I have in the doorframe. When I did P90X the first time, I struggled with pull ups using a  pull up assist and could never get nearly as many reps as I was supposed to. The second time through P90X I used bands and I felt it worked my back much better than struggling to do a few pull ups. So I went straight to the band this time and I really felt it. Besides, even using the pull up assist, there is no way I am going to get out all the reps this workout calls for–Sagi does them fast. I get much better back work with the band.

For this workout you need dumbbells and a barbell if you have one (or sub with dumbbells if you don’t), a bench or stability ball and a pull up bar or resistance tubing secured in the top of a door frame.

Shoulders 38 minutes: This is a tough workout that hits the shoulders hard. I have always avoided shrugs since I don’t want a big neck, but I went ahead and did them anyway here. And I discovered a new (to me), very cool exercise doing this program–Scap Traps! Wow! I think you really need a bench to do them properly (which I have), but I love this exercise!

For this workout you need a bench or stability ball, dumbbells and a barbell (if you don’t have a barbell, just sub dumbbells).

Legs 38 minutes: This workout is brutal. Brutal. It is so fast-paced that you will get a good cardio workout, too! Sagi pushes you and his crew members hard in this workout and you will feel it. The hardest part is the superset where you do alternating front lunges and step ups to reverse lunges–with no rest between exercises. The following giant set is tough, too, but after the aforementioned superset it gets slightly easier!

For this workout you need a bench (I used a square high step at 14 inches for the step ups and the bench for the calf raises); if you don’t have the bench just follow the modifier, dumbbells and a barbell if you have one (if not, sub with dumbbells).

Bulk: For the most part I really, really like the Bulk phase. You will still be doing single sets, super sets and giant sets just like in Build, but in Bulk, Sagi adds some fun new techniques: Force Sets, Progressive Sets (pyramiding both up and down), Combo and Multi sets. The workouts are tougher, and he does a lot of the reps (especially during Progressive Sets) much faster than in Build; however the workouts are shorter. You are hitting the muscles much harder, but you also have more time! I liked that because I was able to add on a Weider Ruthless workout afterwards (20 minutes) and also an additional stretch (usually a Cathe stretch). Because, just like in Build, he doesn’t spend a lot of time stretching out the muscles he just brutalized.

Chest 30 minutes: Chest is a good workout, but I feel it is heavy on incline work. I don’t mind incline work, but I have a bench and maybe my bench doesn’t incline enough, but feel like I am getting a lot of shoulder work with all of those incline presses. Maybe I should change to a stability ball for the incline presses. He hits you with those decline push ups again–this time a Multi set with supermans and Russian twists–no rest between. I do really like the Force sets of chest press with rotation and the close grip chest press to fly.

For this workout you need the bench or a stability ball and dumbbells. No barbell used.

Back 29 minutes: Another incredible back workout. These are my favorite workouts in the entire program. In each back workout he works every muscle in your back from top to bottom. After this one I feel my back muscles burning for hours afterward. Tough and fast-paced, but I love it. Maybe my favorite workout in the entire program.

For this workout you need dumbbells and a barbell if you have one (or sub with dumbbells if you don’t), a bench or stability ball and a pull up bar or resistance tubing secured in the top of a door frame.

Shoulders 35 minutes: Shoulders is tough, but I don’t like it as much as Build Shoulders. In some ways it is easier than Build. Plus, in Bulk Shoulders he rags on one of his crew members, Scottie, excessively. And during the progressive sets of upright rows with the barbell, he doesn’t give you enough time to change your plates (if you are using a barbell that is)! I had to have the remote nearby just to keep up.

For this workout you need a bench or stability ball, dumbbells and a barbell (if you don’t have a barbell, just sub dumbbells).

Legs 41 minutes: Wow. And I thought Build Legs was tough. This is even worse! You get the cardio effect too, just like in Build Legs. It is very fast paced. The first time I did this, my legs were burned out by the end (side-to-side squats and deadlift superset) and I was really pushing to get through those side-to-side squats. My legs were jelly-like afterwards. And then they started aching! I mean really aching. Pre-DOMS aching, some of the worst I’ve ever had. Extremely intense and effective lower body workout! No doubt about it. At the end of the Bulk phase–this workout wasn’t getting any easier. Still wore me out by the end.

For this workout you need a bench or stability ball, dumbbells and a barbell (if you don’t have a barbell, just sub dumbbells).

Arms 36 minutes: Although the rep speed in all of the Bulk workouts is faster than in Build, Arms is the worst. He pounds some of those reps out so fast that it is really hard to go as heavy as I know I can. However, my triceps are seriously fried when this workout is complete!

For this workout you need a bench or stability ball, dumbbells and a barbell (if you don’t have a barbell, just sub dumbbells).

Body-Beast2Beast: The Beast workouts in the basic set include Total Body, Cardio and Abs. If you get the bonuses, you’ll find that the Tempo workouts and Lucky 7 are also Beast workouts. Well, maybe not Lucky 7. Lucky 7 is just an anomaly, I guess. It has no sleeve in the DVD casing and is not included on any rotation calendar. I used it in conjunction with Total Body.

Total Body 39 minutes: I really like Total Body. In 39 minutes he hits every muscle group. Obviously, you are not getting the same kind of workout that you get from the split series workouts, but he manages to compact a great total body workout into a short amount of time. Every exercise is done for 15 reps. Each grouping consists of 4 exercises: 2 upper body, one lower body and one core. You do each grouping twice and there are 4 groupings. It is fast paced and so doubles as a metabolic weight training workout, too–getting your heart pumping. I always did it in combination with Lucky 7–so I got an excellent, hour long, total body metabolic weight training workout on Total Body/Lucky 7 days. It felt awesome!

For this workout you need dumbbells (no barbell needed), a bench or stability ball and a pull up bar or resistance tubes. If using resistance tubes, they are secured at the bottom of the doorway in this workout and you lay on the floor.

Tempo Chest/Tris 52 minutes: Tempo Chest/Tris is a deluxe workout you have to pay extra to receive–but it is worth it. It comes on one DVD with Tempo Back/Bis (Beast Abs is also included on this DVD). Although it uses the same exercises that appear in Build and Bulk workouts it is very different–and very challenging! Definitely advanced. One of the things that is prevalent through all of the Body Beast workouts is that the reps are generally done fast and that Sagi doesn’t have a very consistent tempo to his reps (unless he is doing them at light speed). Well, that is fixed here. Tempo stands for very slow. All of your reps are done slowly. Almost every exercise is done single set and they are all done in the same pattern (no drop sets btw). Your first set is 15 reps with your lightest weight to the tempo of 6 up and 6 down, your second set is 12 reps with a medium weight to the count of 6 up and 3 down (or 3 up and 6 down, depending on the exercise) and your third set is 8 reps with your heaviest weight to the count of 3 up and 3 down. And as mentioned before, no drop sets. By the end of the chest work, my chest muscles were trembling. By the end of the tricep work–triceps were trembling as well. The final exercise (tricep kickbacks and tricep dips) are superset. Between each circuit you do an active recovery of core/ab work. BTW–the core work is also done using the “tempo” philosophy–SLOW. I used each of the tempo workouts once during the Build phase. During the Beast phase (final phase) I used the Tempo workouts in place of the Build workouts.

Equipment needed: barbell (if you don’t have a barbell, just sub dumbbells), dumbbells and a bench or stability ball; if you don’t have a bench, you will also need a chair or high step (something stable) for tricep dips.

Tempo Back/Bis 48 minutes: Tempo Back/Bis is the other deluxe workout that you have to pay extra for–but so worth it! It is on the same DVD as Tempo Chest/Tris (Beast Abs is also included on this DVD). The description for this is very similar to the description for Tempo Chest/Tris–a lot of the same exercises you see in Build and Bulk, but to a slow tempo: Your first set is 15 reps with your lightest weight to the tempo of 6 up and 6 down, your second set is 12 reps with a medium weight to the count of 6 up and 3 down (or 3 up and 6 down, depending on the exercise) and your third set is 8 reps with your heaviest weight to the count of 3 up and 3 down. No drop sets. Between each set you do an active recovery of core/ab work, also to a slow tempo. You will be using the pull up bar or resistance bands for some of the core work. And just like Tempo Chest/Tris my muscles were trembling by the end. The next day? Severe DOMS.

Equipment needed: pull up bar or resistance tubes, barbell (if you don’t have a barbell, just sub dumbbells), dumbbells and a bench or stability ball. If using resistance tubes, they are secured at the bottom of the doorway in this workout and you lay on the floor. Also, I used both the bench (for pull overs) and the stability ball (for preacher curls).

BodyBeast_LUCKY7Lucky 7 23 minutes: Love this workout! He packs a lot into 23 minutes! It is tough and fast paced. You will definitely get some cardio from this one. It consists of compound moves done in ladder format. That means you do 1 rep, then 2 reps, then 3 reps, all the way up to 7 reps. Let me give an example of how this plays out. One of the exercises is called Skull Crusher + Press + Crunch. To do this you have barbell and lay on your back. You do one skull crusher, one chest press then, keeping the barbell pressed at the top of the chest press move, do a crunch. Next, you do 2 skull crushers, 2 chest presses and 2 crunches–you keep doing this until you are doing 7 reps of each move. It seems fairly easy at first, until you get into the 5, 6 and 7 rep range–then it really starts hurting! There are 7 combo exercises. Metabolic weight training at its finest!

For this workout, all you need is a barbell with a variety of plates. If you don’t have a barbell, then sub with a variety of dumbbells.

Abs 11 minutes: Beast Abs is a decent abdominal workout. Not the best I’ve ever done, but it does the job. You’ll need one dumbbell for this workout. I used an 8 pound dumbbell. 1. It starts with a basic crunch. 2. Next is a Russian twist with a dumbbell. 3. Hip up–lay on floor and raise hips/legs toward the ceiling. 4. Crossed Tuck in: with ankles crossed, sitting in V-sit, bring knees in and out. 5. Cobra: this is just spinal erector training; lay on your belly and raise and lower your upper body. 6. Spiderman crunch: get in high plank and bring knees to elbows on the outside of the body. 7. Bucket drop: Still in high plank bring your knee under your body, almost laying the side of your outer thigh on the floor (tough move). 8. One arm open plank: in high plank, holding one dumbbell, raise the dumbbell to the sky. 9. Windshield wiper: lay on your back with legs straight up to sky and bring them side to side. 10. Beast Abs: while still on your back with legs straight, use your legs to spell beast. This last exercise is really silly, and to be honest, I really didn’t feel much.

Cardio 30 minutes: 2 minute warm up, 26 minutes of cardio and 2 minute stretch. I did Beast Cardio once a week throughout the entire program. But every time I did it, I did not do it the same and that definitely had an impact on the way it felt. First, let me explain what it is. Obviously it is the cardio workout that you use if you are doing the Lean Rotation. But it is primarily metabolic strength training with some plyo. You will use lighter dumbbells and body weight for the strength part. He varies the workout a lot and nothing is repeated so that keeps it interesting. Most exercises are combo moves. Many have a little tempo he uses–you do an active movement for 20 seconds then hold isometrically for 10 seconds. Everything is done for at least one minute, regardless of what type of move it is. Some are done 90 seconds. You get a recovery breather between each exercise that is usually 30 seconds but sometimes as long as a minute after the more intense moves. Now, when I did this workout during the Build Block, I did Beast Cardio + Beast Abs + Cathe‘s STS Extended Stretch, which totaled about 56 minutes–so a good morning workout. I found Cardio to be a good workout, but not incredibly intense. Well, during the Bulk phase, I did Bulk Back and followed it up with Beast Cardio. Cardio seemed way harder after completing Bulk Back! I was wasted afterward!

The workout starts with a short warm up that includes a jog, reverse lunges, side squats, sumo squats and more jogging. Then you grab a light set of weights (I used 8s) for your first move. 1. squat with overhead press for 20 seconds then hold in squat for 10 seconds; this is done 3 times. 2. Toe tap; you need the bench or a large dumbbell for this. I have a bench, but doing it using the bench for a solid minute was out of my league, so I used my high step at 10 inches. It is basically a soccer move–hopping while alternating tapping your toes (fast) on the bench or dumbbell. 3. Squat to jump squat and hold. One squat, then one jump squat and keeping alternating that for 20 seconds, then hold in low squat for 10 seconds. Do this 3 times. 4. Mountain climber + Renegade Rows + Plank hold. In that order. I used 12 pound dumbbells. Do this series for 90 seconds, each move is done for 15 seconds. 5. Sumo Squat and hold. I used one 15 pound dumbbell for this one. Sumo squat for 20 seconds then hold in a low sumo squat for 10 seconds. Repeat 3 times. 6. Weighted burpee and Stretch–total time 1:40 minutes. I used 12 pound weights for this one. You do burpees while holding the dumbbells. After doing burpees for 30 seconds put the weights down and balance on one hand and opposite leg while stretching the other hand in front of you and other leg behind you–hold for 15 seconds. Go back to the weighted burpees for another 30 seconds seconds, then do the stretch for 15 seconds on the other side of the body. 7. Plyo push up and hold. Just what it says and it sucks! Do plyo push ups (I did these on my knees even tho I can do them on my toes–but not for 90 seconds!!!) for 20 seconds and 10 seconds of holding at the bottom of the push up. Do this 3 times. 8. Sumo jump. Jump your legs in and out fast while in sumo squat position for one minute. 9. Squat to upright row and hold. I used 10 pound weights for this exercise. Do 20 seconds of squats with upright rows then hold at the top with dumbbells under your chin for 10 seconds. Do this 3 times. 10. Alternating lunge jumps and hold. Lunge jump for 20 seconds then hold in deep lunge for 10 seconds. Repeat and hold in deep lunge, but other leg. 11. Plank press up and hold. This just an army crawl move: start in high plank then lower to low plank (on elbows) one arm at time, then back up to high plank, one arm at a time. After 20 seconds hold in low plank for 10 seconds. Do this 3 times. 12. Plank/Twist/Sprint. In plank, bring your knees to your elbows on the outside of your body 4 times, then to your opposite elbows under your body 4 times, then stand up and sprint for 20 seconds. Do this 3 times. That’s the last move! 2 minutes of stretching and you’re done!

My Rotation:

Build Phase:

Week 1:

Monday: Chest & Tris

Doubles: HIIT 30/30

Tuesday: Legs + TurboFire Lower 20

Doubles: Yoga Max premix 1

Wednesday: Back & Bis

Doubles: HIIT Pyramid

Thursday: Cardio + Abs + STS Extended Stretch

Friday: Tempo Chest & Tris

Saturday: Shoulders + HIIT 40/20

Sunday: Yoga Warrior

Week 2:

Monday: Legs + X10 Cardio Blast + Xtrain Cardio Leg Blast stretch only

Tuesday: Back & Bis

Doubles: Yoga Relax premix 1

Wednesday: Cardio + Abs + STS Extended Stretch

Thursday: Shoulders + Xtrain Rear Delts bonus

Doubles: ChaLean Extreme Fat Burn Challenge

Friday: Chest & Tris

Saturday: Legs + Ignite + Xtrain Cardio Leg Blast stretch only

Sunday: TurboFire Fire 30 + Stretch 40

Week 3:

Monday: Tempo Back & Bis

Doubles: To The Max 30/30 HIIT premix

Tuesday:  Shoulders + Xtrain Rear Delts bonus

Doubles: To The Max Triple Tabata premix

Wednesday:  Cardio + Abs + STS Extended Stretch

Doubles: Yoga Max premix 2

Thursday: Chest & Tris

Doubles: Crossfire Fitness Blast/Firewalker Tabata premix

Friday: Back & Biceps

Saturday:  Legs + TurboFire Lower 20

Sunday: P90X: X Stretch

Week 4:

Monday: Shoulders + Xtrain Rear Delts bonus

Doubles: Weider Ruthless 1 Hardcore Circuit

Tuesday: Chest & Tris

Doubles: Weider Ruthless 2 Lunatic Intervals

Wednesday: Legs + TurboFire Lower 20

Doubles: Weider Ruthless 3 Killer 100s

Thursday: Cardio + Abs + STS Extended Stretch

Doubles: Yoga Relax premix 2

Friday: Back & Bis

Saturday: Shoulders + Weider Ruthless 4 Wicked Lower Body + X10 stretch only

Sunday: PiYo Align

Bulk Phase:

Week 1:

Monday: Chest + Weider Ruthless 5 Fast Slow Burn Circuit

Doubles: PiYo Lower

Tuesday: Legs + Abs +Xtrain Legs stretch only

Doubles: PiYo Upper

Wednesday: Arms + Weider Ruthless 6 Ruthless Ringside

Doubles: PiYo Sweat

Thursday: Back + Cardio

Doubles: PiYo Core

Friday: Shoulders + Weider Ruthless 7 Tabata Sweat

Saturday: Shiva Yoga Flow

Sunday: Total Body + Lucky 7 + Stretch Max 1

Week 2:

Monday: Legs + Abs + Xtrain Legs stretch only

Doubles: PiYo Upper

Tuesday: Chest + Weider Ruthless 8 Core & Flex

Doubles: PiYo Lower

Wednesday: Arms + Weider Ruthless 9 Ruthless Gives Back

Doubles: PiYo Sweat

Thursday: Back + Cardio

Doubles: PiYo Core

Friday: Shoulders + Weider Ruthless 10 Willpower+ X10 Stretch only

Saturday: Release Yoga

Sunday: Total Body + Lucky 7 + Stretch Max 2

Week 3:

Monday: Legs + Abs + Xtrain Legs stretch only

Doubles: PiYo Strength Intervals

Tuesday: Chest + Weider Ruthless 11 Super Strength and Power

Doubles: PiYo Buns

Wednesday: Arms + Weider Ruthless 12 Horizontal Circuit

Doubles: PiYo Sweat

Thursday: Back + Cardio + STS Extended Stretch

Doubles: PiYo Full Body Blast

Friday: Shoulders + Weider Ruthless 13 Nitro Burn

Saturday: PiYo Drench

Sunday:  Total Body + Lucky 7 + Stretch Max 3

Week 4:

Monday:  Legs + Abs + Xtrain Legs stretch only

Doubles: PiYo Strength Intervals

Tuesday: Chest + Weider Ruthless 14 Hardcore Arms & Abs + Supercuts stretch only

Doubles PiYo Hardcore on the Floor

Wednesday: Arms + Weider Ruthless 15 Drip

Doubles PiYo Full Body Blast

Thursday: Back + Cardio + Xtrain Cardio Leg Blast stretch only

Doubles PiYo Strong Legs

Friday: Shoulders + Weider Ruthless 16 Rip 10s + Flex Train stretch only

Saturday: PiYo Drench

Sunday: Total Body + Lucky 7 + KCM Bootcamp stretch only

Week 5:

Monday: Legs + Abs + Xtrain Legs stretch only

Doubles: PiYo Sculpt

Tuesday: Chest + Weider Ruthless 17 Speed, Power, Sweat + Supercuts stretch only

Wednesday: Arms + Weider Ruthless 18 Performance Stretch & Yoga

Doubles PiYo Hardcore on the Floor

Thursday: Back + Cardio

Doubles PiYo Sweat

Friday: Shoulders + Weider Ruthless 19 Total Body Circuit + X10 stretch only

Doubles PiYo buns

Saturday: PiYo Drench

Sunday: Total Body + Lucky 7 + Stretch Max 1

Beast Phase:

Week 1:

Monday: Bulk Legs + Lean Legs & Abs (abs & stretch only)

Doubles PiYo Strong Legs

Tuesday: Tempo Chest/Tris + Burnsets Stretch only

Doubles Weider Ruthless 1 Hardcore Circuit

Wednesday: Cardio + Abs + STS Extended Stretch

Doubles PiYo Sculpt

Thursday: Tempo Back/Bis + TurboFire Low HIIT 20

Doubles Weider Ruthless 3 Killer 100s

Friday: Build Shoulders + Weider Ruthless 6 Ruthless Ringside

Saturday: PiYo Drench

Sunday: Total Body + Lucky 7 + Stretch Max 2

Recovery week due to back injury

Monday: Rest day

Tuesday: Yoga Relax

Doubles PiYo Strength Intervals

Wednesday: Step Heat

Doubles PiYo Core

Thursday: MMA Boxing

Doubles PiYo Buns

Friday: TurboFire Fire 55 + Stretch 10

Saturday: BodyFit 360

Sunday: Total Body + Lucky 7 + Stretch Max 3

Week 2:

Monday: Build Legs + Abs + Great Glutes stretch only

Doubles PiYo Full Body Blast

Tuesday: Bulk Chest + Weider Ruthless 2 Lunatic Intervals + STS Extended Stretch

Wednesday: Bulk Shoulders + Weider Ruthless 4 Wicked Lower Body

Doubles PiYo Buns

Thursday: Bulk Back  + Cardio + Flextrain stretch only

Doubles PiYo Sculpt

Friday: Bulk Arms + Weider Ruthless 7 Tabata Sweat + X10 stretch only

Saturday: PiYo Drench

Sunday: Total Body + Lucky 7 + KCM Bootcamp Stretch

Week 3:

Monday: Bulk Legs + Turbo Barre abs and stretch only

Doubles PiYo Sweat

Tuesday: Tempo Chest/Tris

Doubles Weider Ruthless 13 Nitro Burn

Wednesday: Cardio + Abs + STS Extended Stretch

Doubles PiYo Hardcore on the Floor

Thursday: Tempo Back/Bis

Doubles Weider Ruthless 15 Drip

Friday: Build Shoulders + Weider Ruthless 5 Fast Slow Burn + Flex Train stretch only

Saturday: BodyFit 360

Sunday: Total Body + Lucky 7 + Ultimate Workout Ultimate Flexibility only

Week 4:

Monday: Build Legs + Abs + Great Glutes stretch only

Doubles PiYo Full Body Blast

Tuesday: Bulk Chest + Weider Ruthless 16 Rep 10s + X10 stretch only

Doubles PiYo Core

Wednesday: Bulk Shoulders + Weider Ruthless 17 Speed Power Sweat + Flex Train stretch only

Doubles PiYo Strong Legs

Thursday: PiYo Strength Intervals + Bulk Back + Cardio + To The Max (core & stretch only)

Friday: Bulk Arms + Weider Ruthless 14 Hardcore Arms and Abs + Crossfire stretch only

Saturday: PiYo Drench

Sunday: Rest

25 responses to “Body Beast

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    • They both effective and do the job, but I think STS is the better program overall. I feel like my upper body bulked up more with Body Beast and they both did great on lower body. It also depends a lot on what you are looking for. STS is more professionally done. The workouts are longer and you need more equipment. Cathe is a better trainer. But Body Beast is still an effective program that does the job. Shorter workouts, less equipment, irritating trainer.

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  8. Do you plan this rotation out in advance, or are you showing us in retrospect what you felt like doing as doubles alongside your Body Beast workouts? I’m only curious because I am a budding program collector (your web site is seriously enabling me) and I can already see that I’ll never be able to stick to just one program at a time without adding in favorites from others. I’d love to figure out how to go about putting things together into a cohesive rotation, though.

    • Hello! Yes, I plan out my rotations in advance. I am flexible so they are subject to change but I try to have things in place a month or so in advance. And yes, sticking to programs is a challenge for me, too. I call it exercise ADHD–I need variety! The hybrid of 3 different systems with other things mixed in from time to time worked really well for me. As for how I put together the Body Beast rotation, I first looked at my goal. With something like Body Beast it is building muscle, so that cuts out longer steady state cardio workouts. The cardio needs to be short HIIT workouts. That’s where Weider Ruthless came in (and earlier in the rotation before I discovered Weider Ruthless I used 30 minute HIIT workouts by Cathe). The other thing I really wanted to incorporate was flexibility. I wanted this for several reasons–first, I need it! And second, with the heavy lifting in Body Beast and Sagi’s sorry excuse for stretching at the end, more was needed. So I used short yoga and PiYo workouts.

      That’s Body Beast. For a normal rotation I try to create a balance. I like to hit each muscle group twice a week so this often translates to one round of split series workouts and one total body workout in a week. I’ll try to do a 2 HIIT workouts each week, at least 1 yoga or flexibility and 1 kickboxing. The rest (doubles and the rest of my workout days–and I generally workout 6 days a week and take one day completely off to rest) I try to do some type of cardio or metabolic weight training. That can vary a lot depending on the type of strength work I am doing.

      Let me know if this is helpful or if you have other questions.

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    • It depends on what you are looking for. Body Beast is based on isolation workouts. Most workouts out there will give you total body strength workouts. However, I can think of two that might fit your needs. First is Cathe’s Burn Sets. This DVD contains two upper body strength workouts but it has premixes and it is chaptered so, if you want you can work one muscle group at a time, or group them however you want, creating workouts any length that you want. The other is Kelly Coffey-Meyer’s Muscle Up. This DVD contains two 30 minute workouts that together work the entire body. Again, lots of premixes. I am not at home right now to look at the DVD so I cannot remember if it is chaptered, but Kelly sometimes chapters her strength workouts by muscle group or exercise. One other good one is Cathe’s STS Total Body. Now the main workout is longer than what you are looking for but it is chaptered by exercise and also has premixes that are under an hour.

      Hope this helps! If you had something else in mind, let me know.

      • Thank you so much for your suggestions. I like the idea of the premixes which I think will work well for me. I’m a runner so I plan on running every other day and looking for strength work on the other days. I think I will give the Muscle Up DVD a shot!

  13. What is the best way to include 30 minutes of cardio twice weekly and a once weekly 30 minute stretch?
    Should I do them as my warmup before the body beast workouts or as separate workouts at another time during the day or on rest/off days?

    • I guess it depends on the intensity of the cardio. If it isn’t intense you can do it any time–before, after, a different time of day. But if you are doing intense cardio, I would do it after your strength training–or at a different time of the day. If you are doing Body Beast, I am assuming your goal is building muscle, so you want all of your energy to go to your lifting not depleted on your cardio before you even start lifting weights. So lift weights first. As for stretching, do it after your workout or on your rest day.

  14. Thanks for previous answer.
    The cardio will be once weekly MMX and once weekly KenpoX but I might do part of each on a heavy bag.
    I guess before Body Beast would serve as an excellent warm up.
    My workouts will never exceed an hour as I work 10-11 hour days as a construction laborer.
    You really know your stuff!

  15. I am doing body beast now I am female, 47 and do Cathe workouts. Love her. I am not as advanced as being able to do all the reps and such as Cathe during those workouts but I hang in there. That is a reference to explain where I am as far as fitness.
    I have a couple questions for advice. I really want to lean out. I am a bit over weight. People don’t think I am but it is probably due to the fact I do exercise. I do not look my weight yet I know I have fat to lose and I need to be lighter for my knees sake! Lol
    I want to keep going with body beast but I am only on the forth day or five now. I did the first three workouts is all and had to take yesterday off because I am so so sore and tired!!’
    I was Supposed to do cardio yesterday but will pick it up today and was thinking of doing shoulders as well to make up for the day I lost. I really want to add in more cardio to lose weight but if I have a hard time with the rotation now will adding HIIT cardio be better or steady state? And should I push myself to do doubles like that or do body beast one day and cardio the next? I know it’s up to my body but if I do the cardio between days would that help lose weight still? And the next question is what is the best thing to do for soreness besides keep moving and stretching? Should I be adding a supplement and if so what?

    • Hi Renee! The first thing you should do is take it easy on yourself! If you are very sore there is nothing wrong with taking a day off and/or doing something easier. Walking, yoga or nothing! There is nothing wrong with DOMS but if it is wearing you out, then you need more rest time than what you are giving yourself. At least at the beginning. So work your way up. As for cardio, it really depends on how you feel. If you are worn out from your strength training then just take it slow. Just working activity into your day will help. Walk more. Ride a bike if you have one.

      There is nothing wrong with getting aggressive to see results, but if you are overtraining your body, you are not going to get the results you are looking for. So I would do steady state/lower intensity cardio for a week or two then add 1-2 HIIT workouts a week then increase it as you feel able. Listen to your body.

      If you are wanting to lose fat then balance is key. You definitely need plenty of protein–at least a gram of protein per pound of body weight, but when I am lifting heavy, I also make sure I drink a whey protein shake after a strength workout. You can make that lighter, too by using Quest protein powder and an almond milk (the ones w/ 25-35 calories a serving). For me, that really helps with soreness. I don’t use any other supplements other than what I take daily–vitamins. Back to the balance. Make sure you are eating at maintenance level calorie-wise or just below since you don’t want your body to catabolize your muscle. And finally–get plenty of sleep!

      Look at a longer picture. You can make any rotation as long as you need it you. If you have a strict rotation you want to follow, map it out. but if you are not yet physically ready for it, then also create a pre-rotation, something easier/lower intensity to work your way up to the higher level of the strict rotation you created. Before I did Cathe’s STS the first time, I prepared for it by doing her 90 day Xtrain rotation. I feel like that really prepared me for STS, which is more advanced.

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