LADIES, Don't Skip the Heavy Weights!!
Here's the quick version of my Body Beast review: I have fallen in love with heavy lifting because it's transformed my body. Plain and simple.
Ladies, do NOT be afraid to lift heavy weights. Those 2 and 5 lb weights won't really get you the body you want.
Stop letting your fear of "bulking" stop you from trying out this amazing program or even just lifting in general!! There is something to be said about this program though: there's no guesswork. That was the problem for me at the gym. I didn't want to pay for a personal trainer because I was cheap and I kind of knew the basics of lifting but I really didn't know what to do and in what combination to get the best results. Before this program, I had no idea what a super set or a giant set was and I had actually never done some of the lifts before.
Even though I knew this program would be good, I was still hesitant to start it. Fear of the unknown I guess! This program is heavy lifting 5 days a week, cardio 1 day a week and 1 rest day. I was hesitant to only do 1 day of cardio even though I KNEW in my head cardio is not the key to fat loss...I still knew I would miss being drenched in sweat and completely out of breath...but I followed the plan and I'm SO glad I did.
There are two different approaches you can take, you can follow the Lean Beast calendar or the Huge Beast calendar. I followed the Lean Beast calendar because huge beast just doesn't sound ladylike. Haha! There are 3 phases that you go through with either calendar; Build, Bulk, and Beast Phases. You will start "building" a base of strength in the first phase and these workouts are the longest (38-50 min). Followed by the "bulking" phase where you change up your lifts a bit. I liked this phase because the workouts weren't as long (29-40 min). If you follow the meal plan that comes with the program you would eat more calories in this section to bulk up, but I decided to just stick with my 2000 -2400 calories a day and not follow their meal plan. I still focused on getting lots of protein, veggies, fruit, fats and healthy carbs though. The goal here is you will add muscle but you will also add some fat. Then in the final phase, you trim the fat and keep the muscle by doing one more day of cardio each week and mixing up the Build and Bulk workouts a little bit.
One minor downside: it requires more equipment than some of our other programs. By the end of the program I was using all of our dumbbells (8 lbs up to 35 lbs), a barbell, and a stability ball (a bench works as well but we didn't have one). Although, you can actually stream this workout from a phone or tablet and do it at the gym and use all of their equipment if you're not interested in buying equipment. Becoming a Team Beachbody Club Member allows you to stream this workout and 33 other workouts as well...it's amazing!
Ok so now for my results:
I actually didn't lose any weight or inches. Yep. I was kinda disappointed at first BUT then I decided to actually look at my pictures and think more about how I FEEL now. Plus, I'm still breastfeeding Eli and I know that is causing my body to hang onto a little extra fat which I'm MORE THAN ok with because getting him nutrients (even though he did just turn 1) is still really important to me!!
I feel so much stronger after 90 days of Body Beast. I'm able to do a lot of moves in other workouts that I struggled with before (crow in p90x3 yoga, elevator pushups in p90x3 The Warrior, all the pushups/plank walks in T25 Total Body Circuit). My legs, back and shoulders are definitely stronger and more defined and I love that!! I was afraid that because there wasn't much cardio, I would lose a lot of my endurance but I actually haven't. I'm still able to do as much as I could before.
All in all, I hope you'll consider adding some heavy weight training to your routine. It definitely takes time to build up the strength, so don't start out curling 30 lb dumbbells or squatting a ton of weight :) There are SO many benefits though...and they last a lifetime!!
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