Insanity: Is It For You?

After proving such a hit throughout the USA, Insanity classes are now being rolled out across Britain, paving a new way in how we approach fitness and exercise.

For those of you who don’t know, Insanity workouts are total-body conditioning programmes, with particular focus on maximum interval training, using a combination of aerobic (with oxygen) and anaerobic (without oxygen) exercises.

While traditional High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) sessions involve very short bursts of maximum intensity efforts with significant periods of rest in between, Insanity does things the other way around, combining far lengthier periods of high intensity efforts with far shorter cool downs.

Insanity workouts are designed to push the body to the edge of their capability via explosive, dynamic exercises.

It is claimed that Insanity workout sessions, if practiced weekly will improve fitness, health and strength within 60 days (a typical Insanity programme). Over the course of two months you will undergo a variety of 45-minute sessions, which incorporate aerobic type exercises such as jumps, running and hopping and high-end explosive routines such as power kicks, squats and suicide jumps, which will push your body to exhaustion. Each session is structured and progressive as you make your way through each week, building fitness as a whole.

Things you need to know about Insanity

- Get used to the pain

It’s tough: The clue is in the name! This workout is designed to hurt. Prepare yourself and understand that these sessions will push your body to the max. Once you get in the right mindset, you will appreciate each session, understand what is happening to your body and be more likely not to give up. Remember, pain is weakness leaving your body.

- It’s all about weight loss

While Insanity may help build some muscle, it’s designed to lose weight and build fitness. It will help shape and tone muscles giving that athletic look, but don’t go into this workout with the aim of building biceps like Arnold Schwarzenegger.  That’s not what it’s designed for.

- Home or Away

Insanity can be done at home with a specific workout DVD. However, DVDs are very easy to pause or turn off altogether. Not that we’re saying you will, but when your lungs start to ache and your heart thumps louder than a Phil Collins drum solo, you may start flirting with the idea of calling it a day. Thankfully there are instructor led sessions you can go to, where they will make sure that giving up is not an option. Call your local gym for more information on Insanity workout classes.

- It’s not for everyone

Not everyone can do it! This is rather important. The Insanity workout is one of the hardest exercise routines out there.  It not only requires willpower, but strength, flexibility and a base of fitness too. It is advised that before attempting the Insanity workout, you must be able to complete 10 push-ups and crunches as well as being able to comfortably run a mile. If you can’t, then work on that before stepping up to the programme.

- Eat right

Insanity won’t work unless you eat correctly. It’s common sense really, and can be applied to the majority of exercise classes. But if you don’t eat the right foods at the right time, you won’t give your body a chance to rebuild and progress. There is a detailed Insanity Diet Programme to follow. In short, it’s all about eating regularly throughout the day, adhering to the protein, carbohydrates and fat ratios. To put it simply, each day’s diet should consist of 40 per cent protein (for muscle repair), 40 per cent carbohydrates (for energy) and 20 per cent healthy fats. Oh and before you ask, junk food is out of the question.

- Take care

All sessions are designed to improve the body. At times, single muscle groups will be pushed, but on occasion, the whole body and therefore entire muscle groups will be working to their full capabilities. While these exercises will improve your fitness, and test you mentally and physically, they aren’t designed to break you. However, in some cases injuries may occur. It’s hardly surprising as a fair amount of force is placed through your joints and muscles. If you aren’t eating the right foods, this could also increase the risk of injuries. Our insurance policy covers individuals wishing to take part in Insanity workouts, covering you for personal accident and public liability.

Why not give Insanity teaching a go?

If you’re already a fitness or dance instructor, why not have a go at teaching Insanity workouts? Leading Insanity workout sessions is great fun and certainly different to other fitness classes. It will also present unique challenges and obstacles to overcome, pushing your skills to the limit. Unlike other fitness classes, as an Insanity workout instructor, you will be the centre of attention, demonstrating routines, working with the students and most importantly motivating them when the going gets tough.

In order to become an Insanity workout instructor, you will need to get certified. Courses last a day and will walk you through all the pre-designed workouts, present options for modifications to suit the ability of your students as well as advice on how to create your own sessions.

It’s also important to be fully covered should an incident occur in your class. Our insurance policy insures you for an accident that happens to you or anyone in your class. To be entitled to insurance you need to have attended an Insanity training course or be registered by The Register of Exercise Professionals (REPS) to Level 2 standard.

For more information on becoming an Insanity workout instructor visit


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Courtesy of

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