Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Focus T25 ... The Road So Far

I am 11 weeks in to Focus T25 and have to say that it's one of the best workout programs I have done to date. The time it takes you to do the workout is short, clocking in at just under 30 minutes (including cool down). There are three phases; Alpha, Beta and Gamma . I am currently in week 1 of the Gamma phase.

The Alpha phase focuses on core strength and stability. Shaun T often refers to this phase as the foundation for the rest of the program. This phase lasts for a total of Five Weeks. I encourage you to follow the schedule that comes with the program for maximum results. There is a reason they formulated it this way and I always say "trust the system".

The first workout is Cardio: It is what it says it is. 25 minutes of Cardio moves with the core in mind. It's fast paced and there are no breaks. You move from one move to the next and seemingly it's always "just in time" and right at the moment you think "I can't do this anymore" ... before you know it; TIME.

Next comes Speed 1.0: This workout tests your coordination as you go through 8 count moves with "stretch" breaks every few moves. These are not only stretch breaks but CORE BALANCE breaks. Focus on form, keep your core tight and progress. This is a fun workout and I LOVE the music in this one. Easily the quickest as far as it seems to go by so fast.

Total Body Circuit ... or TBC. This is a BEAR. After 5 weeks I was STILL doing modified moves and hope to nail it when I restart the program in October. I truly believe that this is one of the hardest workouts of both the Alpha and Beta phase and it may have actually been better suited in the Beta phase.

Ab Intervals: this is your ab centric workout for the Alpha phase and it's a good one. I always feel it when I am done and am actually relieved when it is ;)

Lower Focus: works on your legs and the lower half of your body/core. Lot's of leg work here.

The Beta Phase introduces weights to the equation. He builds on the moves learned in the Alpha Phase and increases intensity by adding weights. It is suggested that you not use heavier then 15lbs but use your own discretion. I found that although I have done P90X numerous times, I was still only using 5lb and 8lb weights on most of these workouts.

Core Cardio: builds on Cardio and steps it up a notch. Again, these workouts are focused on core strength and working the fat off the midsection and building the muscle that's under the fat. I noticed after doing 2 weeks of Beta I was starting to see improvement in that area and hope to see even more after doing a second round

Speed 2.0; I LOVE THIS WORKOUT. 2 circuits, 3 rounds each then at the end you are doing both circuits back to back 2x then both circuits 1x to the end. Music again is awesome but you aren't getting the stretch / core balance breaks in this workout. Easily my favorite of Beta and, in fact, probably one of my favorites of the entire series. No weights used in this one.

Rip'T Circuit; this is the first time you are bringing weights into the workouts. It's a good one and I would say great for people that are utilizing this as their first "structured" workout program. I found it easier then TBC but there were some moves here that I would modify to get through the workout. It's not easy but then again, each workout is only as hard as you make it by pushing yourself.

Dynamic Core: This is your ab workout for Beta. There are a few moves in this workout that I question but still found that I was able to focus more on squeezing my core when he indicated to do so and feel that it is a good workout for the beta phase.

Upper Focus: Is what is say it is; upper body workout with weights. I love my weights and therefore loved this workout. Reciprocating curls; Arnold presses ... everything.

I am still doing Gamma (only on Day 3) but will say that Speed 3.0 is too difficult for me to do at this time and I will be utilizing Speed 2.0 for this round. I hope my second round I will be doing Speed 3.0 and will report back.

Rip'T Up is a notch up from Rip'T circuit and it very weight and balance heavy. He has you doing balance moves with curls as well as utilizing the floor for presses. I liked this one a lot.

I have Extreme Circuit tonight then The Pyramid tomorrow. I will do a more comprehensive review of Gamma later.

Overall thoughts: If you don't have time to work out but want to see results (weight loss/toning) Focus T25 may just be for you. It's short and effective. Will you get a HUGE active calorie burn? Probably not, but the effectiveness of the workouts are what count here.

I should mention the nutrition guide too. This is one of the easiest to follow guides and I have been utilizing many of the recipes in the 5 Day Fast Track as well as the general guide for 7 weeks now. The meals are not only easy to prepare but are delicious. Contact Me by Email if you would like more information or if you would like to see a "food blog" about some of my favorite recipes.

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