Note: This is NOT a paid or sponsored post, all opinions are purely my own and based off my experience.
Please read my description of the Insanity Workout Series here, before reading this blog post.
Get Fit Or Get Out!
The Asylum is the mother of all workouts, it is the brother to the Insanity Workout Series. Also created by Shaun T, this program comes after you graduate Insanity. There are 2 volumes in the series, volume 1 and volume 2. This time, it is only 30 days instead of 60 days, thats because the intensity level is off the charts and it is hard core. Shaun T definitely ups the anti in this elite training series! It is my recommendation and also Shaun’s that you complete The Insanity Workout series before stepping into The Asylum.
DIFFERENCES BETWEEN INSANITY:
Equipment- Unlike Insanity, Asylum requires equipment, an agility ladder, skipping rope, resistance bands and also weights or a chin up bar (or both, the chin up bar is optional)
Difficulty of moves- The moves in Asylum are definitely more difficult, not just because it’s a faster pace and higher intensity, but because there is a huge focus on improving performance and performing more skill based moves. These moves aim to improve your agility, speed, strength, coordination, power, flexibility and stamina in the shortest time frame possible. They require a lot more thought and concentration as well as energy. There are some moves where you may need to stop and think about how to do them. They require you to sharpen and focus your mind on the set task, especially with some of the agility sequences in the ladder. They are more complex and detailed.
Intensity- The Intensity is much higher and it’s more fast paced compared with Insanity. There is also less resting periods, and the rest that you do get it shorter.
Higher focus on strength- Asylum focuses more on strength based moves in comparison to Insanity, so expect a shredded back, lean arms, calfs and stomach, but to be more tired.
Strong focus on sports based moves- Especially in the workout “Gameday” which is one of the hardest and longest ones, the moves are sport orientated, each move is based off the action of a different sport. Eg) Surfing, soccer, running, baseball, basketball etc etc.
VOLUME 1 WORKOUTS:
- Speed & Agility: Get quick on your feet-fast, with this intense cardio workout. (45 minutes)
- Vertical Plyo: Jump higher than ever with this lower-body training routine. (40 minutes)
- Relief: Stretch out to build long, lean muscle and increase your flexibility. (25 minutes)
- Strength: Increase your strength and power by cross-training with weights and resistance. (50 minutes)
- Game Day: Put your new sports skills to the test with this cross-training workout. (60 minutes)
- Back to Core: Build the rock-solid core, glutes, and hamstrings for the explosive power you’ll need to play and dominate at an elite level. (45 minutes)
- BONUS-Sports Performance Assessment: Discover the improvements you’ve made in your fitness and skills with this performance measurement tool. (25 minutes)
- BONUS-Overtime: Add this monster to any ASYLUM workout to see if you’ve still got game. (15 minutes)
VOLUME 2 WORKOUTS:
- Agility Tutorial (25 minutes)
- X- Trainer (50 minutes)
- Upper Elite (60 minutes)
- Power Legs (55 minutes)
- Back and 6 Pack (40 minutes)
- Ab Shredder (20 minutes)
- Off day stretch (31 minutes)
- Championship (20 minutes)
Note: Volume 2 is longer and harder than volume 1. Please complete volume 1 first then move on to volume 2.
I’ve done volume 1 all the way through twice and volume 2 all the way through once. I currently do whichever workout I please on whichever day combined with Insanity and other exercises as my workout. These workouts got me into the best shape of my life. I thought I was fit after Insanity, this takes it to that next level. My calfs were so strong and defined, core, super strong even more defined, arms strong, back defined and I was super flexible and fast. By the end I could do 1000 skips in a row without tiring or messing up, I could do all these fancy pushups easily and my cardio was off charts. I didn’t lose much weight because I was already at a low weight and ate more to ensure I wouldn’t get too thin, I did gain muscle mass and definition as noted above. I enjoyed volume 1 more so than volume 2, I found it more enjoyable and more motivating. But both were fantastic. I found them very challenging and it took some time to learn some of the moves. It took everything I had to complete the series, it was tiring but worth it. I was in the best shape of my life and got there so quickly it was amazing. I didn’t think I had much to improve on after Insanity, but I definitely did. I cannot recommend this program enough for those who are serious about exercise and performance.
Note: I took at least a week break before commencing volume 2 to rest and replenish my body and allow it to recovery adequately.
Most of the stuff you will figure out by yourself through trial and error. But if you want to skip the usual exercise in frustration and fast forward things to the point where you know everything it will take as to complete the Insanity Asylum workout while not worrying over details, here are couple of tips.
- Wear sneakers/runner. This is really important. All the jumping and leg work-out as well all the plyometric power moves will put a lot of stress on the joints and feet. If you chose not to wear any sneakers you might get injured fairly quickly. Also- wearing sneakers ensures that you have the proper joint stability which will in turn allow you to execute the movements.
- Have a towel with you. Trust me, you will be drenched in sweat
- Proper room temperature. Make sure that the room is ventilated and somewhere around 18-20 degrees Celsius. Make sure you have ventilated space and clear air to breathe. You will get hot.
- Have a bottle of water with you. You must hydrate constantly due to the amount of sweating you will experience.
- Set everything up couple of minutes prior to the start of the video. If the Insanity workout was bringing your pulse up in no time,asylum will bring it up even faster. Start with some stretching and jogging to prepare yourself. A minute or two followed by another minute of rest would suffice. This is never advised officially but, over time, I noticed that it will prepare you a lot better than jumping straight into the videos, as most of the videos just get straight into it.
- Pay attention to the ladder. Spend a minute or two as to study the movements and then go slowly through them while paying a close eye on form first and foremost.
- The Insanity Asylum workout has some elements of cross training. Meaning that it includes weights and resistance other than what your body provides by itself. However, here are couple of tips concerning the resistance part. As all of the Beachbody programs love to modify things out as to better fit the customer, so does Insanity Asylum workout too. Every resistance exercise, every single one has one or several modifications.
- The chin-up bar is great, but it can be replaced by bands as well as dumbbells – And vice versa. I only used the dumbbells.
- Now about the weight; the thing is to get dumbbells that will make the workout hard to complete on the one hand, while still keeping it possible at the other. If you can do the strength video from the Insanity Asylum workout easily even the first time that means that the weight of the dumbbells is too low. If you have big troubles completing the warm-up part of the video though and are ready to throw in the towel even at the start, then it might mean that the load is too heavy.
- Never hit the pause button. That way you are only cheating yourself. Do not worry if you have to stop and adjust the ladder, or the jump rope, or just slow down and take a breath or two… As long as the tape is rolling you are good. Just push yourself past YOUR limit, and things will be great.
- Sleep at least 7.5 to 8 hours a night. The Insanity Asylum workout is an athletic type of training- an elite type of training, and you will need all the strength you can muster. Besides, muscles repair themselves and grow when you rest yourself. So never deprive yourself from sleep. It’s one of the critical elements to your performance. If you don’t sleep, you will really feel the effects and you will fatigue quickly and won’t be able to recovery quickly enough.
This is a very intense, fast pased, high impact workout. If you have a heart condition or any other abnormalities, please consult your health care professional before beginning.
If you are injured or prone to injury, this is a workout that I probably would’t recommend unless you contacted your physiotherapist first. There is lots of jumping and hard, high impact moves.
If you are unfit before commencing this workout be sure to know your limits, they always say it on the DVD but this is an extra reminder. Take note of your heart rate and be careful, take extra breaks if you need to and always drink water throughout and afterwards. Also, always stretch before and after to aid recovery and minimise your chances of injury.
Finally, enjoy the program and the results you’ll get!