I have been wanting the Tapout XT workouts for a very long time but they were expensive (according to their website the program is cheaper now than it used to be, but still more than I want to pay). It wasn’t until I rediscovered ebay that I finally got them. I paid far less for my copies used than they cost new; however, they are used, so for all I know something is missing from my programs. Here is what I got with my Tapout XT package: 13 workouts + a 5 Minute Knockout workout (can’t really count a 5 minute add on as a “workout”), Strike Training DVD which teaches you all of the moves, a Food Plan & Nutritional Guide, a rotation calendar, a 10 day slim down guide and a bunch of resistance bands in a little nylon bag. According to the website I was also supposed to get a Fitness Guide and a leg band. The leg band is just a Firewalker (of which I already own lots). The Fitness Guide is probably what would give me more information about the program and workouts, but oh well. Ebay, right? I get what I paid for and I paid a fraction of what it is sold for new. Also, it appears one of the workouts (Power Strike) plus the 5 Minute Knockout workout are deluxe/bonuses, so I am not sure that they are included in every program.
The DVD casing is cheaply put together. It doesn’t look like it at first. It comes in the DVD box holder filled with 7 slim plastic DVD cases. Two DVDs are put into each casing so that when you pry them open both DVDs pop out on the floor. And then half of them do not snap back into place in the casing. Which makes me assume that at some point while doing this program at least one of the DVDs will be so scratched up there will be issues (there weren’t, all played fine). However, like I said, I got it super cheap. I might be mad if I had paid what the website asks for it and got such shoddy packaging. But I didn’t, so I will live with it.
Tapout XT is a fitness program. Just like with every other workout program I do, I start the blog post after (or even sometimes before) doing the first workout then continue to work on the post as I go through the program. So as I begin writing this post, the only thing I have done so far is view Strike Training. So what is Tapout XT? It is a MMA inspired fitness program in which you kick, punch and do resistance band and body weight strength training (again, this was written before actually doing any of the workouts; after doing all of the workouts, there turns out to be much less punching and kicking than you would expect from an MMA workout program). According to the website, you have real MMA fighters doing the workouts with you. Since I do not follow MMA, that means nothing to me. In the Strike Training DVD you are introduced to these MMA Champions. One female and 5 males. One of the males is called the “Cowboy” and he is wearing a cowboy hat. The leader/creator of the workouts is Mike Karpenko (he is not one of the MMA champions afore mentioned) who is a fitness trainer. He also narrates the Strike Training DVD. It is 7 minutes long and all it is, is the 7 MMA fighters each demonstrating different punches and kicks (at Mike’s command). No information is given to you about the program itself. That information is probably in the Fitness Guide that was not included in my package. However, on the website it says it is “based on a synergistic combination of cardio, strength, core and power exercises coupled with fun and challenging MMA inspired kicks, punches and elbows which will take you to a whole new level of fitness.”
The Food Plan & Nutrition Guide gives lots of information on understanding macronutrients, the psychology of eating and food choices. It gives you a 20 day meal plan with recipes and no nutritional breakdowns or calorie counts. So… that is not helpful. The 10 Day Slim Down Guide is just a quick start/accelerator that has you eat less for 10 days to see quicker results. Again, no nutritional breakdowns or calorie counts.
Finally, most of the workouts end with a “Killer Move.” All this is, is an extremely advanced or difficult exercise that fits in the theme of the workout you are doing. Some of them are challenging but doable and some really are killer!
Update #1: After a little more than a week of doing the program I have some thoughts. The first being that so far, though it is not what I expected, it is a solid and challenging program that I (so far) like . You will notice that I wrote the individual workout reviews right after I did the workout the first time, so in the early ones I express disappointment that they are not what I expected. But once I had done several, I knew what to expect and started to enjoy them a lot more. So what did I expect? A lot of MMA type fighting moves–so a lot of cardio kickboxing. I have seen very little of that after doing half of the workouts. In fact, it is very body weight focused with lots of push ups and plank moves, lots of core work and MMA moves are thrown in here and there, but they definitely do not dominate the program. There is a lot of band work. Another thing I have noticed is that Mike seems like he is trying to emulate Tony Horton of P90X fame. Now I do not mean the workouts themselves. Having done P90X twice, I am not seeing a lot of similarities in the workouts, but Mike’s behavior is what I am referring to. My husband is currently doing P90 so not only do I recall Tony’s quirky personality from P90X and P90X Plus, but currently I also get to hear Tony in my house a lot. IMHO, Mike seems like he is trying to talk and joke in the same manner Tony does, but it comes off all wrong. It’s not funny and sometimes makes no sense. He even uses some of Tony’s little words. For instance, sometimes during a stretch Tony will talk about it being “yummy” because it feels good after a hard workout. Silly, but oh well–that’s Tony. When Mike does it (that exact same thing–calling stretches “yummy”) it makes me cringe. That’s not the only phrase/behavior he seems to be copying; there are many. That was just an example of one. However, it is all cringe-worthy.
Also, I feel there are safety issues in Tapout XT. This workout can be approached at many levels. If you do every exercise exactly as Mike demonstrates them then yes, you are doing an extremely advanced workout. He does a lot of exercises in what he terms an “explosive” manner. And that means a lot of jumping (both hands and feet) while doing plank based moves (I’m not talking burpees either–plyo push ups with both feet and hands leaving the ground at the same time). And he does these moves fast. That is hard and IMHO a recipe for injury if you are not already at an advanced fitness level. He also rarely shows modifications or cautions you to not push yourself beyond your fitness level until you are ready. And since he is the one demonstrating the exercise, the idea is you are trying to do what he is doing. That is not a good thing at all. And it really makes no sense–especially since the point of doing most of these programs is to lose weight and increase fitness. He does not take where the home exerciser may be starting (fitness level-wise) into account at all. He repeatedly shows us before and after pictures of the test group and you can tell just by looking at them, they were not capable in the before picture of executing his advanced moves (and some of them still aren’t!). However, I know better and I did not even attempt some of his explosive plank based movements. I am also familiar enough with working out in general that I knew exactly how to modify any move that was too extreme for me. A push up instead of an explosive push up–or a push up with jack legs instead of a plyo push up in which both legs and feet are flying in the air, or a plyo push up with upper or lower body–not both. There are a lot of other extreme moves, but the explosive push up variations are what stick out in my mind. He also sometimes has you use the band in an explosive manner, which again, is not safe. I mostly used my own bands but I used one of the bands that come with the program for some of the exercises and it snapped in the middle of an exercise, popping me in the leg. Super cheap band. I used my own bands from thereon out. Anyway, my point is, modify some of these extreme moves and you can still have an advanced workout. No reason to injure yourself.
In spite of everything, I will say the program grew on me. The more I did it, the more I liked it. Never loved it, but it is effective and does the job.
Update #2: I have now done all of the workouts and found the program as a whole to be a very mixed bag. As mentioned above, I had a different perception of this program than what it actually delivered. Oddly, when I actually came across the workouts that contained what I expected from this program (martial arts based moves) I did not like those workouts and generally found them a waste of time. The program as a whole is advanced, but some some of the workouts were intermediate level. Mike remained consistently irritating throughout the entire program. His instruction was uneven–he did not work both sides of the body evenly (different rep tempos when he changes sides, or he just didn’t work one side as long as the other), when he did do MMA moves (punches) he would mess up leads frequently. Though he was always in his crew members faces “encouraging” them, he rarely corrected poor form in his crew and his own form was not always stellar. With that said, there were some workouts I really liked. Out of 13 workouts there are 4 I will definitely return to: Ripped Conditioning, Competition Core, Plyo XT and Cardio XT. These workouts were not free from the above the problems, but IMHO they are just better workouts. More enjoyable, more intense, better structured. I also liked Ultimate Abs XT fine and will use that in conjunction with the 4 mentioned. So that is my evaluation of the program as a whole. Below is the breakdown of each individual workout.
1. Strength & Force Upper is 54 minutes long with 3 minute warm up and 2:30 minute stretch. This is a strength workout that uses bands. You do a lot of push up variations. It is structured where you do several band upper body strength exercises then do a push up variation. The entire workout alternates in that fashion. The push up segments are approx. 30 seconds long and the band strength work segments are approx. 1-2 minutes long. If it isn’t a push up, it is always done with the bands–even when you do punch/jabs/upper cuts. I needed two levels of bands. A heavier one for most of the exercises, but also a lighter band for some of the fast punching. I really wanted to like this workout. It was the second Tapout XT workout I’ve done (Cross Core Combat and Ultimate Abs XT were the first) and so far, I am just not impressed. It is a solid workout, do not misunderstand. But I keep expecting something different from these Tapout workouts, something more MMA/kickboxing than what I have gotten from the workouts I have done thus far. Plus, I am not crazy about the trainer, Mike Karpenko, and his crew is pretty lackluster. Some of the males are really putting effort into the workout; but those are just the guys who have done the 90 day program, not the MMA fighters. One MMA fighter in this one actually had pretty good form but everyone is on a different tempo and the women hardly seem to be exerting themselves most of the time. During one part, Mike points out how strong one of the exercisers is (Mary). She has done the 90 day program. She is a 42 year old mom. According to Mike, it is “rare” for someone of her age with children to be so muscular and fit. Well, he lost me there. I was insulted. I am a 44 year old mom who works out religiously, has plenty of muscle and has done harder workouts than Tapout XT. Frequently. Oh and I was using heavier bands than this “rare” woman. Rare my a$$.
1. Chest scoop
2. Push up w/ hook elbow
3. Front raise w/ chest punch
4. Push up w/ upper elbow
5. Interval high punches
6. Chest scoop alternate arms
7. Ground and pound (plank move–high to low plank)
8. Lateral raise/pull push
9. Push up w/ foot slap
10. Band high punches
11. Chest openers holding band in front
12. Arnold press
13. Side to side hover drops (push up)
Short water break
14. Tempo bicep curls (single, single double)
15. Tricep push up
17. Alternating Arnold Presses
18. Octagon push up
19. Lateral lunge with bicep curl
20. Side to side hover drops (push up)
Short water break
22. Mid point stretch (using band, with arms straight and wide bring band overhead and behind to low back)
23. Scarecrow lunge
24. Spiderman push ups
25. Wide bicep curls
26. Wide/ normal/ octagon push ups
27. Single arm Scarecrow lunge
28. 3D hand direction push ups (outside, forward, inside)
29. 3 level bicep curls
30. Standing Lateral Raise (more like upright rows with the band)
32. Band in front (chest stretch)
34. Overhead Tricep presses/wide bicep curls
35. Push with knee out (knee to elbow)
36. Snatch press
37. Lateral lunge pull (lunge pull with lateral raise)
38. Superman power ups
39. Iso chest fly
40. Killer Move: Karpenko Curls (lay on back with band wrapped around feet and do bicep curls at varying speeds for 1:30 minutes).
2. Plyo XT is 51 minutes long with a 6:30 minute warm up and a 3 minute stretch. No equipment is needed for this workout and it is tough! This workout is a serious winner and as you may have surmised (or will if you continue reading) there aren’t many in this program. First, let me say that Mike apparently did not initially plan to call this workout Plyo XT. In the beginning he refers to it several times as “Legs,” another time about halfway through as Plyo Legs and during the stretch he calls it “Tapout Legs.” All 3 are accurate. Lots of plyo and it works your legs hard and nonstop. Very challenging workout. The warm up is a bit longer than usual and he spends all of the time warming up your lower body. The crew worked hard and were wiped out at the end (I was too!).
1. Squat and kick.
2. Plank step ins (in plank, alternate bringing foot to outside of hand).
3. Front lunge/back lunge/hop (you hold in back lunge for the hop).
4. Lateral lunge with raise (side lunge and then, as you are coming out of the lunge, you raise the straightened leg off the ground and come up using the bent leg only).
5. Squat touch ground (and also alternate kicks).
6. Groiners (the same as #2, but “dynamic”–you jump switch the legs).
7. Front lunge/back lunge/hop/hop (the same as #3 but two hops instead of one).
8. Lateral lunge raise (the same as #4, except you will lunge side to side 3 times before doing the raise).
9. Stretch (calf raises).
10. Squat/hop/3 punches.
11. Running lunges (in lunge switch legs fast, staying low the whole time).
12. Static lunge/pop switch (hold in static lunge for 4 counts then jump switch the legs).
13. Lateral lunge/knee drive (lateral lunge into raised knee into curtsey lunge).
14. Squat/pop/elbow/elbow (squat, jump from squat, two elbow strikes).
15. Running lunges (same as #11).
16. Static lunge/hop/4 upper cuts (hold in static lunge to count of 4, jump switch legs and do 4 upper cuts while still in lunge).
17. Lateral lunge with curtsey kick (lateral lunge into curtsey lunge into front push kick).
18. 3 pulse tuck jump (squat pulse 3 times then tuck jump).
19. Lateral hops (get into lunge and w/out switching legs (so legs remain in deep lunge, never changing position) jump side to side).
20. Speed skaters.
21. 180 elbows (180 jump squat with elbow strikes).
22. Low squat/elbow or punch (get into low squat and tuck jump while staying low then do two elbow strikes or punches, your choice).
23. Lateral hops (same as #19 but on the other leg).
24. Low speed skaters (this is a very odd/awkward move where you are basically doing speed skaters on the ground with one hand always on the floor).
25. 180 elbows (180 jump squat while punching at the floor).
26. Squat/hop/jab/jab/hook/hook (squat with feet together, jack out to wide squat, then do the punches).
27. 90-90 with punch (go quickly (not jumping) from lunge to the right then lunge to the left while punching).
28. Standing speed skater
29. In/out/jab/cross (wide squat touching finger tips to ground, jack feet in and out, then punch).
30. 90-90 with punch (same as #27 except now you jump switch your lunges).
31. Standing speed skater/knee strikes.
32. Stretch (inner thigh stretch).
33. Broad jump lunge (broad jump forward then reverse lunge each leg back, putting knees on ground then “popping” back up w/out using hands so you are standing).
34. Shoot the leg/3 punches (front low lunge and reach with hands like you are grabbing someone’s leg to pull out from under them, then back to standing for punches).
35. Broad jump lunge with alternating kick (same as #33 with kick).
36. Pulse lunge with speed bag (get into static lunge and speed bag arms while pulsing/small hopping).
37. Shoot the legs with sprawl (same as #34 but instead of punches, jump back into burpee).
38. Killer Move: 60 seconds of tuck jumps.
3. Cross Core Combat is 46 minutes long with 5 minute warm up and 3 minute cool down. Cross Core Combat was actually the very first Tapout XT workout I did and I was disappointed. I was expecting a lot more intensity from this program than what this workout gave me. Now, I do not want to completely discount it. It is not a bad workout, but I truly was expecting more. For one, I had 2 pound weighted gloves on, expecting some MMA style kickboxing. I got none of that. There were some kicks and there were some punches but not much of either. The punches were done with a resistance band under your feet and your hands holding the handles. Not a bad idea but for the minimal amount we did, I did not have a heavy enough resistance band, so if I do this workout again I will use heavier bands. Also, there is a lot of plank work. In fact, I would categorize this as a cardio-core workout, which makes sense since the word “core” is in the title, I just expected something else. There are a few very challenging moves but overall it is intermediate level. Each move is done for approx. 30 seconds and some as long as a minute (but most around 30 seconds). The hardest move is the “Killer” move at the end. That one was very challenging!
For this workout you need a resistance band and a mat–you will be on your elbows a lot in plank and even carpet starts to hurt.
1. Front snap kick/front push kick.
2. Walk out to sphinx: get into squat (starting position) walk hands out to plank, drop to elbows and shift body forward then back, push back up to hands and walk back out to starting position (low squat).
3. Side plank with extension: the extension is a superman; so side plank then drop to belly for superman, then side plank other side.
4. Rotating knee strike: lay on back, sit up and continue to rotate into a plank, bringing outside knee in like you are kneeing (striking) someone.
5. Shift forward/pop/switch: same as #2, but once you are back in starting position, switch your feet (a scissor feet move).
6. Plank reach extension: side plank reaching overhead then under body then overhead again, then drop down and do superman.
Short water break
7. Grab your bands, hold handles and stand on the middle; bob and jab cross
8. Sphinx/pop-up down: in elbow plank, shift forward and back then up into high plank.
9. Superman roll/leg punch: start in superman, roll onto back (keeping legs and arms elevated) and punch at opposite knees.
10. Freaks: push up and at top of move raise opposite arm and leg.
11. Grab bands; bob weave upper upper: just like #7 except upper cuts.
12. Sphinx/elbow knee/pop-up: elbow plank, shift forward and back, bring one knee in to elbow then pop up into high plank.
13. Superman banana: roll from super man to banana; in banana bring hands to feet.
14. Chamber side kick.
15. Superman upper elbow push up: get into superman; while in superman bring elbows up in front of you as if in blocks, then push up into high plank.
Short water break
16. Hellcat: get into plank, then push back so knees are bent and body weight loaded to feet, then push forward, twisting knees so hip nearly touches the ground.
17. Knee crunches: lay on back with legs straight and hands behind head, bring right leg up and crunch to it, bring left leg up and crunch to it, bring both knees in and crunch to them.
18. Superman with elbows: superman and while in superman do front and back elbows (blocking moves).
19. Hellcat with kick: same as #16 but kick bottom leg.
20. Knee crunches with twist: same as #17 but you twist to opposite knees.
21. Grab band for resistance knee ups: sit on bottom and wrap band around feet, holding handles near face, kick knees in and out while leaning upper body back.
22. Walking plank/side to side/up down: in elbow plank walk side to side, then go into high plank and back to down plank, then elbow plank walk again.
23. Iso resistance knee: same as #21 but with one leg.
24. Fighter walk/squat upper: stand on band again; walk to the side then squat and upper cut.
25. Walking plank knee strikes: walk forward in elbow plank, pop up to high plank and do two angled mountain climbers, drop back to elbow plank and walk back.
Slightly longer water break
26. Tricep push kick: in crab position, dip and alternate kicking feet.
27. Standing oblique crunches: stand on band again and hold handles near face, “crunch” walk 3 to the side then lean side to side (working obliques).
28. Crunch ankle/slap knee strike: lay on back and do a sit up, slap the opposite ankle, lower back down, come back up and rotate over into plank doing the same knee strike as in #4.
Short water break
29. Killer Move: Grinder. This killer move earns that name. You do 10 push ups, 10 tuck ins (plank leg thrusts), 9 tricep push ups, 9 tucks ins; keep alternating down to 1; so basically ladders. Regular push ups are always the even number and tricep push ups are always the odd number (so you end with tricep push ups/tuck ins). Now, this was a seriously hard combo move, but they went so incredibly fast I could not keep up, so in the end I did maybe half as many as they did.
4. Competition Core is 47 minutes long with a 3 minute warm up and 3 minute cool down/stretch. Now, I have to preface this review by saying I am now in my second week of Tapout XT and know what to expect. I say this because I started this program with Cross Core Combat and was disappointed because it was not what I was expecting. Well, Competition Core is similar to Cross Core Combat, but I liked it a lot. I do think that overall it is a better workout than Cross Core Combat, but it was similar enough that if I was beginning with this one I might be disappointed, too. But since that isn’t the case, I was very please. I got a great workout. It is a cardio-core workout, but different from Cross Core Combat. Though there was plank and push up moves, it is not as plank/push up heavy as Cross Core Combat. It has a lot more standing core work and it also has more cardio bursts. Overall it was fun, intense, got my heart rate up and worked my body in new ways. There is a trend that stands out in all of these workouts and that is the use of “explosive” moves. For some of them all you are doing is adding a jump, but for others (push up moves in particular) Mike makes them very advanced and dangerous for people who aren’t already in excellent physical shape. It bothers me that Mike does not discuss this. He just shows everything at its highest level and rarely shows a modification. These workouts can still be very intense without the explosive moves that could cause injury. Now if you want to go extreme and make this super advanced (and you are an advanced enough exerciser to do these moves w/out injury) then yes to the crazy advanced version, but otherwise, do not hurt yourself.
For this workout all you need is a band. I used a lighter band.
1. Lumberjack (just wood choppers with a band).
2. Power knee strikes.
3. Balance knee strikes (lean over like doing a warrior 3 (with one leg raised behind you) then come up quickly bringing knee up).
4. Plank knee strikes (violent mountain climbers–forcefully pushing knee toward opposite elbow).
5. Side knee love handle blast (standing, bring knee to elbow but out to side of body).
6. Low level lunge (get in low lunge and drive knee in and out).
7. Sledgehammer (put band under one foot and bring over opposite shoulder, holding handles together; bring handles down to opposite knee).
8. High knee sprint.
9. Reach and pop (same as #3 but with a jump when bringing knee up).
10. Mountain climbers with abduct (do mountain climbers then bring one leg out straight to side and hold for a second, bend knee and bring to elbow while doing a push up).
11. Prison squat (squats with hands behind head, at top raise knee and tap with opposite elbow).
12. Marching soldier/knee strikes (raise straight legs and touch with opposite hands then raise knees and twist torso toward opposite knee–alternate moves).
13. Snow angels (3 different variations/tempos of this core move).
14. Knee strike/push up/power jack (2 mountain climbers, 1 plyo push up, then rotate to side plank and raise top arm and leg twice).
15. Side plank knee crunch (get into side plank and bring top elbow to top knee).
16. Orlie hop (one legged burpee).
17. Warrior push up (go to warrior pose and immediately drop down, hands on ground and front foot goes back to join the back one so you are in plank, do a push up, bring foot forward again and come back up to warrior then to standing).
18. Power jacks/knee strikes (2 plyo push ups and 4 mountain climbers).
19. Reverse lunge with pull (grab band and put under one foot (this will be your front foot), do a reverse lunge while bringing band overhead w/ arms straight).
20. Lunge bounce (get into low lunge and jump, keeping feet in the same low lunge position).
21. Mountain climbers/up downs (start in elbow plank and do 4 mountain climbers then 4 low to high planks)
22. Bader roll (roll back into plow, roll back to V-sit then punch 2 times)
23. Plank reach through (get into plank, punch under your body then turn into side plank and reach same arm overhead).
24. Side burpee punch (these are done at a controlled pace; lower into a squat, do a side burpee but hold while legs are out and punch with top arm before jumping feet back in and standing).
25. Pull and push out (get into V sit and alternate pulling in one knee and pushing it back out).
26. Bridge push kicks (get into bridge and raise one leg to ceiling, raise and lower hips while pushing leg toward ceiling).
27. Ab bicycle reach (basic bicycle oblique work).
28. Leg cross crunches (lay on back with legs straight, bring one straight leg over body till foot touches floor, then with hands behind head, raise and lower shoulders).
29. Lateral shuffle (get into squat and shuffle side to side, with various arm movements–touching ground, elbow strikes).
30. Plank/hip rotator (in plank, bring one leg underneath you (keeping it straight) to other side; alternate. Mike goes very fast, jumping while doing it; this seems very dangerous to me unless you are already in amazing shape; he does give the modification of doing it w/out a jump, which I would recommend unless you are Shaun T. It looks like an injury waiting to happen).
31. Scissor crunch (bring one leg up in scissor, reaching toward toe with opposite hand then with hands behind head, crunch toward same knee; alternate sides).
32. High Knee sprint
33. Killer Move: Queen bees (get into lunge with hands behind head; jump twist from side to side while bending over knee to work abs).
5. Buns & Guns XT is 31:30 minutes long with 3:30 minute warm up and a 2 minute cool down. When the workout is finished it goes straight into Ultimate Abs XT (#10 below). Not sure what to think of this workout. It’s not a bad one; it does get the job done and it works your glutes in a new ways. So if you are tired of squats, lunges and deadlifts–then maybe this will be your thing. I am accustomed to getting my legs worked much more thoroughly with primarily Cathe, but other trainers as well. However, for 30 minutes he did give the legs and the arms a pretty decent workout. You will need the leg band and a resistance band for this workout. I used a medium resistance band. The structure of the workout is approx. 10 minutes of lower body, 10 minutes of arms (with a few compound moves that that also work the lower body), and the last 10 minutes is lower body again.
1. Grab leg band and put around ankles. Lateral leg raises.
2. Rear lunges (actually not lunges but rear leg raises).
3. Speed skater (stepping back at a 45 degree angle).
4. Bring band down so it is over the tops of the feet and you are standing on it. Knee strikes.
5. Knee strike with a hop.
6. Squat with leg lift (squat with knee lift).
Water break (also get rid of leg band)
7. Get resistance band. Bicep curl with overhead press.
8. Reverse bicep curls.
9. Sit on ground and wrap band around feet then lay on back. Glute bridge curls (raise and lower hips while doing bicep curls).
10. Roll over onto stomach, raising hands over head (so you are lying in superman pose); Superman triceps (tricep extensions–band is still wrapped around feet).
11. Feet up curls (get into V-sit (band still around feet) and do bicep curls, working abs and biceps).
12. Get into side plank holding band under the palm of your floor hand and with the other hand doing tricep extensions to the sky.
13. Sumo squat curl (stand and put band under feet, legs wide and band crossed; squat low and do alternating bicep curls).
14. Grab leg band and put around knees. Lay on back and do glute raises
15. Bring band down to ankles. Hold in elbow plank while doing one arm raises.
16. Stay in elbow plank and walk feet in and out (to the side, that is).
17. Cross over legs (get into high plank and cross one leg over the other, tapping the floor).
18. Wide feet stretch (supermans with band still around ankles).
19. Superman pulses (same as #18 but you pulse).
20. Killer Move: Bun Blaster (while in elbow plank, with band still around ankles you will do various leg movements).
6. Yoga XT is 51 minutes long. This workout was a huge disappointment on so many levels. First, I am currently doing a month long rotation that incorporates Tapout XT 1 & 2 + Insanity Max:30. So this morning I really felt my body needed some good recovery stretching. This did not feel like recovery. At least the first half. It wasn’t hard, but you spent so much time during the first half in plank and down dog that my shoulders started aching. Then there was the fact I just really didn’t like the workout–neither the moves nor how it is put together. And finally, Mike was at an all time high of being irritating. OMG. He makes so much NOISE. Weird sounds, loud breathing, stupid commentary that IMHO is trying to sound like Tony Horton. His form is terrible, too. I’m not going to lie. I did get stretched out decently, but the overall workout was so unpleasant I will never return to it. I have lots of other far better yoga workouts I can do with zero irritation factor (Release and Cathe‘s yoga and flexibility workouts are favorites–and PiYo of course!). Due to that (and the fact it is a yoga workout), I am not going to break this workout down move by move as I do the other workouts in the program. I’m just going to give a general overview of what to expect.
The workout starts with a warm up that is 11 minutes: XT stretches (stretch arms overhead then to the side in a T), bend over and touch toes, chair pose, plank hovers, up dog, down dog. The only way you know the warm up is over is the words “warm up” disappear from the bottom of the screen. Up dog/down dog series in which you bring one leg up into 3 leg dog, then under body and hold, to the side and hold. One arm table top. Warrior series–Warrior 1, 2 and reverse. Halfway through you get a water break. Chair pose. Runners lunge with torso twist. Side plank variations where you are lifting your top leg in various directions. Hydrants but you hold leg up for several seconds in the hydrant position. Cat/cow. Child’s pose series with thread the needle. Hip flexor stretches. Spine stretch (laying on back and rotating bent knees side to side). The last 5 minutes are “Yoga Abs.” Scissor holds. Roll up and down, arms overhead and touching toes. Something called a “Pigeon Crunch” where you lay on back and come up into crunch, crossing one leg over the other knee. It ends with rolling back and rolling up into boat pose. Throughout the entire workout he inserts up dogs, down dogs, XT stretches and bending over to touch toes between the other moves.
7. Sprawl & Brawl is 46 minutes long with a 3 minute warm up and 2:30 minute cool down. This is the 3rd full Tapout XT workout I’ve done and I finally got more of what I was expecting from this program. No kicks, but you get lots of punches and I was finally able to wear weighted gloves. For this workout you alternate between standing moves–punches, lunges and punches w/ lunges (brawl?), and plank, push up and other ab work (sprawl?). It was a very good workout, challenging, but again, I just didn’t love it. I don’t care for the trainer, the exercisers are all over the place and even Mike’s count is off. He usually works once side of the body longer than the other. And frequently, when he does change sides, he does the other side at a completely different tempo than the one you just completed. Nevertheless, I did get an excellent workout, despite the lack of “fun factor.”
For this workout I would have a mat due to elbow plank moves and weighted gloves if you want them. Make sure the weights are on the back of the hand, because you will be in high plank and doing push ups a lot, so your palms should be unhindered.
1. Tapout push up (diver bomber).
2. Forward lunge w/ punch, reverse lunge w/ punch.
4. Fighter burpee knee strikes (burpee w/ mountain climber then punch at the top).
5. Jab, cross, back knee.
6. Spider sprawl (start in narrow plank and walk out to the side into wide plank and do a push up; do this move side to side).
7. Lunge/upper cut (lunge forward and reverse while doing upper cuts at the bottom of the move).
8. Bridge/punch-punch/elbow-elbow (punch while in bridge, then come up in sit up for the elbow strikes).
9. Jab, cross, hook, upper cuts.
10. Walking plank push up (walk forward in elbow plank and do a push up, elbow walk back and do push up).
11. Jersey Shore (front and reverse lunges with 4 punches at the floor at the bottom of the moves).
12. Peas Roll (elbow plank to high plank 4 times, then roll to side elbow blank and side punch 3 times while raising and lowering hips).
13. Plank pops/elbow combo (from plank jump into squat and do 4 elbow strikes).
14. Bob, weave, upper cut, upper cut.
15. Plank explosion (from elbow/knee plank to high plank, w/ power).
16. 3D lunge with knee strike (side, reverse, front, knee raise).
17. Champion/one arm/one leg (come up into sit up raising one arm over head and opposite leg)
18. Step back, hook/elbow strike.
19. Plank explosion with push ups (elbow/knee plank to high plank w/ power).
20. 3D lunges/pop pop (same as #16 but instead of knee, you do two punches).
21. Bridge/pop pop/hook hook (same as #8 just with different punches).
22. High knee interval sprints.
23. Upper cut, upper cut, elbow strike, elbow strike.
24. Dive bombs (same as #1 but you “pop” (hop) at different parts of the move).
25. 8 mountain climbers/4 tuck ins.
26. Triangle sit up.
27. Down up/jab/jab (on knees, fall forward into push up, push yourself back up to knees and jab twice).
28. Upper cut/upper cut/elbow strike/elbow strike.
29. Push ups with shoulder taps
30. Groiner to fighter burpee (groiners are while in plank, bringing one foot to same side hand).
31. Table top/alternating elbows (lay on back with feet raised, knees bent; lower feet to the ground and raise them, then at the top bring elbows to opposite knees).
32. Killer Move: Fall Push up Mountain climbers (similar to #27 except once you fall forward you get on your toes, do a push up, do mountain climbers then push back to knees).
8. Muay Thai is 40 minutes long with a 5 minute warm up and 3 minute cool down. This workout was another huge disappointment for me on many levels. First, the “idea” of Muay Thai is what I was expecting from Tapout workouts initially–kickboxing. Except, once again, this workout is so poorly constructed and executed that I will never bother to do it again. There is zero attention paid to form. None. The intensity and difficulty level is intermediate. The moves are uninspired and Mike’s instruction is all over the place. Often when he changes leads to work the other side of the body–he goes back to the lead already worked for a few reps. It’s confusing. Many of the combos are awkward and very difficult to do smoothly. Overall thumbs down. There is no point in wasting valuable workout time on this when other trainers do martial arts cardio workouts thousands of times better (see Susan Chung, Ilaria Montnagni, Cathe and even Les Mills Combat). However, if you are still interested, below is what you get.
For this workout you will need weighted gloves and no other equipment.
1. Jab/cross/hook elbow/hook elbow.
2. Single leg tuck ins (in plank, jump one foot in and out while the other is raised).
3. Back lunge/knee strike/upper elbow/hook elbow.
4. Repeat 1-3 on other side of body.
5. Cross/hook/over the top elbow.
6. Alternating knee strikes.
7. Jab/cross/jump switch/knee strike.
8. Repeat 5-7 on other side of body (or with other lead).
9. Hook/over the top elbow/knee strike.
10 Knee strike/jump switch.
11. Jab/cross/jump switch/knee strike.
12. Repeat 9 & 10
13. Jab/cross/jump switch/knee strike/switch.
14. Front push kick/rear snap kick.
15. Side squat/knee strike/power back/knee (the power back is a fast reverse lunge).
16. Toe point/snap kick (raise knee with toe pointed then, without lowering it, snap kick that same leg).
17. Repeat 14-16 on other side.
18. Lead kick/jab/cross/rear knee.
19. Jump/plank/walk back (squat jump forward (like a long jump), jump feet back into plank, then walk hands back to feet).
20. Rear knee/front kick.
21. Front kick/jab/cross/rear knee.
22. Jump/plank/knee strike/knee strike/walk back (same as #19 except add diagonal mountain climbers where it says knee strike).
23. Rear knee/front kick.
24. Killer Move: 4X, 4X, 4X, 4X (4 knee strikes, 4 squat upper cuts, 4 push kicks, 4 squat elbow strikes).
9. Ripped Conditioning is 41 minutes with a 2:30 minute warm up and 2 minute stretch. When this workout is over, it goes directly into Ultimate Abs XT (#10 below). However, Ultimate Abs XT also has its own DVD. Ripped Conditioning is a solid strength workout. There are 2-3 impact/cardio moves (combined with a strength move) to get the heart rate up, but overall this is a strength only workout using the band. It also only works the upper body. It’s a very good workout tho if you have a variety of bands. I used 3 for this workout–a heavy band, a medium band and a light band. That worked well for the first time through, but when I do this workout again I will probably refine my band selection even more and use 1-2 additional bands. I own a lot of bands of different strengths and in order to get the perfect workout, you need the perfect band for each exercise. I will say that the bands that came with this workout program are not heavy enough for back work. They go from very light (basically unusable) to medium. For me that is. Everyone is different. I did really like this workout, too. Mike is still irritating and making such a big deal about Mary being an older mom (42) and working out so hard. As if that is so unusual for older moms to put forth effort and exercise. Give me break. Seriously. It’s insulting. I also noted in this workout that everyone seemed to be giving it their all–crew members and MMA fighters. When Mike attempted to get through an entire exercise with his crew he frequently crapped out because it was too hard (or in reality his band was probably too heavy for the specific exercise). So don’t feel bad if you max out since the trainer cannot seem to make it through all the exercises! But seriously, no one was making band changes in this workout. Most of them had one band they used for every exercise, which means that frequently the band they were using was the wrong strength for the exercise they were doing. I don’t care about whether you are strong or not–using the same band for every single exercise is not appropriate for anyone. So be smart when doing this workout and do band swaps as needed to get the best possible workout.
1. Wide grip bent over row (heavy band).
2. (no band) Explosive side to side push up.
3. Upright row (medium band).
4. Outside wide bicep curls (medium band).
5. Overhead standing triceps extensions (medium band).
6. Single wide grip bent over row (same as #1, but you alternate arms).
7. (no bands) Side to side push up with leg elevation.
8. Upright row singles (same as #3, but you alternate arms).
9. Single wide bicep curls (medium band).
10. Standing tricep one leg (same as #5 but stand on one leg).
11. Reverse fly (stand on band and cross them/lighter band).
12. Push up and rotate (medium band/fold in half and warp around back, lay on back and do chest presses).
13. Push press (stand on medium band, hands at shoulders/overhead press).
14. Hammer curls (stand on medium band).
15. Tricep lunge (medium band/tricep kickbacks).
16. Single arm reverse fly (same as #11, but you alternate arms).
17. Jabs/jump switch (fold medium band in half and wrap around back/jab & cross then 180 jump).
18. Single arm upper (same as #13 but alternate arms).
19. Iso curls (stand on medium band and do bicep curls but across chest–so hand touches opposite shoulder).
20. Iso kickbacks (same as #15 but alternate arms).
21. Pull up and rotate (heavy band/back rows).
22. Bicep and chest (lighter band, stand on band in a wide lunge stance/band under back foot and do a standing chest fly).
23. Down/pop up/press (stand on medium band, do a squat, come up fast bringing band handles to shoulders, squat again then overhead press).
24. Side lunge crescent curl (get into deep side lunge, band under one foot and do concentration curls with elbow pressed against inside of bent leg/medium band).
25. Diamond push up/leg up (no band/tricep dips).
26. Up and twist (same as #21 but alternate arms).
27. Single arm reverse fly (same as #22 but alternate arms).
28. Single arm squat press (same as #23 but alternate arms).
29. Cross curls (stand on medium band and do upper cuts).
30. Diamond tricep push up (same as #25 but cross one leg over other knee).
31. Push up Iso Row (no band/basically a push up/renegade row but without a dumbbell).
32. Drop down/reverse fly (stand on band with one leg; bend over, lifting one leg behind you and do a one arm reverse fly while balancing).
33. Killer Move: I’s Y’s T’s (get lighter band and stand on it; raise arms straight overhead, then overhead but in a “Y” then to the side in in “T'”).
10. Ultimate Abs XT is 16 minutes long. This was a decent abdominal workout. Not the hardest core workout I’ve ever done but respectable and creative. 1. banana boat (V-sit while pulsing hands towards feet), 2. banana boat punch, 3. champions (a sit up where you punch your arms overhead at the top of the move), 4. magnet crunches (back in V-sit, open and closed arms), 5. magnet crunches with scissors (same as #4 but scissor legs), 6. cowboy oblique crunches (lay on back with knees up, feet crossed; punch your outer ankle), 7. crunch bridge (do a bridge and when you come up in crunch slap the floor between your legs), 8. crunch elbow (crunches with elbow strikes), 9. bader roll (roll back in plow, then up into V sit and punch toward feet), 10. windshield wipers (traditional windshield wipers, but when your legs are over to the side, you reach for your toes), 11. superman flutters (superman with swimmer legs and elbow strikes), 12. triangle abs, 13. three directional speed bag (sits up with speed bag arms, changing direction each time you come up-right, center, left), 14. Killer Move: GFOs (lay on back with knees bent, reach over shoulder and pretend to grab opponent, come up on your elbow and one knee, and do a knee strike with the other knee; alternate sides). One minute stretch/cool down.
11. Cardio XT is 46:30 minutes long with an 8:30 minute warm up and 5 cool down/stretch. When the workout is over it goes straight into Ultimate Abs XT (#10). No equipment is needed for this workout except weighted gloves if you have them, but those aren’t even necessary. However, they will increase the intensity of the workout. The setting for Cardio XT is different than all of the other workouts (except 5 Minute Knockout bonus #14 below) plus there are no MMA fighters; only 3 other crew members. The warm up consists of cycling through high knees, jacks, punches, different hops (side to side/forward back) and butt kick runs. This is actually an intense cardio workout that I liked. It wasn’t HIIT intense, but it definitely got my heart rate up there. Mike was mildly less irritating (still irritating, but lower key than usual) and did more of the exercises with the crew. He did frequently stick his face in the camera, filling the entire screen and blocking out your ability to see the other exercisers.
1. Jab cross high/low (just as it sounds; do jab-cross punches high and then lunge low).
2. Side squat hook (squat to the side and hook punch at the top of the move).
3. Boxing front jab (jab 3 times to the front fast while shuffling forward touch the floor, then shuffle back).
4. XT Sprints (high knees with arms in the Y position and the T position).
5. Rope and sprawl (pretend like you have heavy ropes and you pound them on the floor 5 times, then do a burpee (or squat thrust)).
6. Low jack hands (a jump lunge with jumping jack hands).
7. Load shuffle (shuffle/fast feet to the side, high knee run back to starting place).
8. Burpee (burpee, 2 mountain climbers while feet are back, two knee strikes at top when standing again).
9. XT slap crunches (lay on back with hands overhead and knees bent; bring up arms/shoulders and knees at the same time and slap the ground beside hips).
10. Duck and punch (squat and come up on your toes when standing and punch upward).
11. XT squat jacks (squat jacks in which you touch the floor at the bottom of the move and at the top you will bring arms up into “X” (Y really) then halfway through change to T arms).
12. Speed skaters (they start pretty easy at first, then he wants you to touch the ground, finally “explode” side to side).
13. High 5 shuffle (shuffle to the side and do 3 knee strikes; I think it’s call “high 5” because he holds his palms out while shuffling).
14. Push up/knee strike (2 push ups, 4 angled mountain climbers).
15. 3D single arm ropes (pretending to do arm slams with heave rope again, except alternating, while doing hop squats that rotate you from side to side 180 degrees).
16. Knee strikes
17. Rope-a-dope (shuffle feet 8 time fast (scissor feet) then 8 fast front punches).
18. Fast feet punches (fast feet while fast front punching; then it changes to fast upper cuts and ends with speed bags).
19. Interval kick/butt kicks (alternating fast snap kicks (or if you’ve done Insanity–switch kicks) alternated with butt kick runs).
20. Fast feet forward/sprint back (fast feet forward, then turn to the side and shuffle back).
21. Jab uppercut/jump switch (the jump switch is a 180 jump so you can jab uppercut on the other side).
22. Killer Move: K-90 (the 90 stands for total time doing the exercise: 90 seconds; 15 seconds of high knee sprints, 15 seconds of one arm mountain climbers and 15 seconds of bringing knees to same side elbow (while standing)–Mike does these running and super fast but none of his crew members or me could do it at his speed so they either did it slower or their own variation of it. Then repeat all of the moves).
12. Legs & Back is 40 minutes long with a 4 minute warm up and a 3 minute cool down/stretch. This was a tough workout that really wore me out. I liked it more than the others I have done so far (I am doing these out of order, so this is the 4th full workout I’ve done), but I still didn’t love it. There were some awkward moves, the legs were worked more than the back and I just don’t care for resistance bands. I actually do like the leg band used (firewalkers) but I don’t really like how Mike used them in this workout. Cathe uses them much better. Let me clarify quickly–this is a tough workout, it worked my legs hard, gave me a good cardio workout and it even worked my back decently. I just didn’t enjoy it and am not crazy about band work. For this workout you need the leg band (also called firewalkers) which is a round elastic band and you need a resistance band. I used 3 different levels of resistance bands. A light one for one exercise, a medium band for the lower body work and a heavy one for the back work.
For the warm up you are doing a lot of moves to warm up your lower body: high knees, lunges, bridges. The workout starts with the leg band. Unless specifically noted, you are always using a band (only a few exercises don’t use a band) and you are using the same band from the previous exercise unless specifically noted.
1. Wrap leg band around arch of both feet and march w/ high knees.
2. Dynamic Marches–same as #1, but jump and hold with knee up.
3. Step in (slow mountain climbers–bands still around arches).
4. Move band to ankle and do plank tuck ins.
5. Plank jacks (band still around ankles).
6. Put band around hands: Renegade row upper cut (push ups with alternating upper cut).
7. Wrap leg band around arch of both feet and march w/ high knees; turns into dynamic marches (#2).
8. same as #3
9. same as #5
10. Bring leg band to just above knees: Squat side step
11. Lower band to ankles and do jumping jacks.
12. same as #6
13. Grab resistance band with handles for Power Lift (hold handles at shoulders while standing on band and do squats), you will do it at different tempos, ending with jumps.
14. No bands. Power jumps (jumps squats).
15. Snatch Front (fold resistance band in half and hold with arms wide; do squats while bringing band from in front of you, overhead to low back; I used a light band for this one).
16. Grab leg band and put around hands; renegade row with push ups.
17. same as #13
18. same as #14
19. same as #15
20. You need your heaviest band for double arm bent over rows; band under both feet, bend over and row.
21. Shrugs; same position as #20, but bend over and stand quickly, shrugging shoulders back.
22. XT Tire Flips (I went to medium band for this one; stand on band, squat with arms holding handles in front of you near floor, then power up to standing, bringing straight arms overhead–like flipping a big tire).
23. Rotate and release (sit down and wrap resistance band around feet (heaviest band again) and do double arm back rows).
24. Grab leg band and put around hands: plyo push ups.
25. Explosions (same as #20, but fast).
26. Stay in same position and do deadlifts.
27. same as #22 (but “explosive”).
28. same as #23 (but “explosive”).
29. Put leg band around hands and do side to side push ups.
30. (No bands) Reverse lunge, squat, front push kick.
31. Iso lawnmowers (put heaviest band under one foot and get into a deep lunge; lawnmower/back row both arms but alternating).
32. Wide upright row (stand with band under feet and crossed; do wide upright rows. I used medium band for this).
33. (no band) Superman/tricep push ups (just alternate).
34. Killer Move: Superman/Knee strike (superman, push up, diagonal mountain climber).
13. Power Strike is 26 minutes long with a 4:30 warm up and 1:30 minute cool down. There is no Killer Move at the end of this workout. I was also finally able to use my weighted gloves in this workout. Unfortunately, this workout was a huge disappointment. It was what I had been expecting more of in Tapout XT early on–kickboxing–but it was low intensity and no fun. You do each combo approx one minute, 30 seconds each side of the body. There is a woman in this workout that Mike keeps focusing his attention on and her form is horrible. Horrible. And his attention is never once on correcting her form. Actually, there are two women he does this with–I cannot remember either of their names, but one of them has decent form and the other–I don’t know what she is doing. Seriously. It looks like she is not even doing the same combo everyone else is doing. Her arms are just flying around. Why does he not correct her form? He just teases her–not about form either. It makes zero sense. Another waste of time workout.
2. Jab/Cross/jump-switch (jump-switch is a 180 jump to the other side)
4. Jab jab/cross cross/hook hook
5. Front upper cut/back hook
6. Front hook/back upper cut
7. Front upper cut/back upper cut/back knee strike
8. Back upper cut/front upper cut/front knee strike
9. Back upper cut/front upper cut/front knee strike/back snap kick
10. Active recovery for 30 seconds which is just alternating knee raises
11. Jump switch/knee strike/reset
12. Elbow/elbow/switch/knee (this time the switch is more like a scissor jump)
13. Knee check/push kick
14. Knee check/front kick/rear kick
15. Jab/front snap kick/jab cross
16. Jab/Jab/snap/snap (two punches, then right snap kick, left snap kick)
14. 5 Minute Knock Out is an odd little bonus. Total workout time is actually around 7:30 minutes, but since it is so short, I will list the exact seconds (usually I round up or down to the 30 second mark). The idea is that a round during an MMA fight is 5 minutes. So this will give you 5 solid minutes of intense Tapout XT moves. None of them are new–they all appear somewhere in the Tapout XT program. The set is different from the set in the other Tapout XT workouts (except Cardio XT–it has the same set). And he has only 3 crew members with him and no MMA fighters. You get 1:22 second warm up, a 5 minute round of non-stop exercises and a 37 second cool down. You need a lighter band for this workout.
1. High punches with bands
2. Plyo explosive push ups
3. Burpee to alternating knee strike
4. Grap band and do overhead tricep press
5. Explosive bicycles
6. Knee strikes (mountain climbers)
7. Upper cut with squats (band under feet)
8. Killer move: Roll up with push up (do plow, then jump body into plank, do a push up, jump body back to back and keep repeating)