With a height of 5′ 7″ and body weight of 143 lbs, I was happy overall. I didn’t want to make drastic changes or experience significant weight loss. However, I was looking for a way to get more toned and increase muscle definition.
Step #1: Insanity
The first idea that came to mind was to try intense high-impact exercise. I purchased the Insanity workout. I started doing it, then gave up because it seemed too hard. A few months later, I tried again but gave up after a few days. Then, I learned I was attending my best friend’s wedding and had to fit into a gorgeous bridesmaid dress that – to keep it simple – looked better on a slimmer figure. I was motivated. I had 6 months to achieve my desired body tone. I started Insanity again, but this time, I did not give up.
It was hard. Really hard. The first week I dreaded coming home from work because I was afraid of doing the workout. Yet, when I had done it, I felt very accomplished and proud. I must admit, I did not perform at the same level as those people on the screen. I incorporated my own adaptations to make the workout easier and to fit my own needs. Regardless, with every workout, I pushed myself harder when I thought I couldn’t. I reached my limit, and I was proud of that for 60 days.
When the 60 days were over, I definitely saw the results of the workout. I lost about 15 lbs and noticed increased muscle definition, especially in my legs and upper arms. I was excited about the results, and must I say, the bridesmaid’s dress fit very very nicely.
What I Loved About Insanity
- It was a challenge: With every workout, I felt like I was accomplishing something. I was pushing my body beyond what I thought was possible. This kept me more motivated because I felt like completing a workout was not something anyone could do, and I wanted to prove to myself that I could do it.
- I could do it at home: I didn’t have to go all the way to the gym to workout. This saves a lot of time, so I rarely had an excuse for myself why I couldn’t fit a 40 minute workout into my day. The convenience of exercising at home made it easier to stick with the program.
- No equipment needed: The insanity workout does not require you to purchase any additional equipment. All you need is a space, a pair of running shoes, and your body. No weights, machines, etc.
- I felt productive: 5 minutes into the workout and you’ll already by drenched in sweat. Even if you do only 10 minutes of the workout (out of the 40 minutes), you have probably burned more calories than any other type of exercise.
Then, I was stuck. Do I continue with this Insanity workout? Do I stop? I didn’t want to quit because I have gotten so far and I was afraid to lose all my progress. I also didn’t want to continue with the over-exhausting exercise sessions every day because I felt like I was over-doing it. So for the next 2 years, I continued with the Insanity workout but only did it 3 times per week, and I was easy on myself. I took more breaks and incorporated more modifications to make the workout easier. Fortunately, I maintained my body and tone, and I was happy with my workout regime.
What I Didn’t Like About Insanity
- I couldn’t keep up: Even after doing this workout several times per week for 2 years, I could not get myself to the same fitness level as the people on the screen. I incorporated my own adaptations to make it easier, and I took extra breaks. In a way, it was discouraging.
- I wasn’t excited about doing it: It was very hard and I dreaded working out because of this. I don’t love torturing myself, so it was difficult to get started with the workout each time.
- It got boring after 6 months: I kept going with the program beyond the 60 days indicated, and after a few more months I realized I was getting bored doing the same workouts each time. I was hoping to find something new.
- I felt like it was too much: I am not a professional athlete. I was asking myself if I really have to participate in such a hard program to be fit and healthy. Working out too much and overexerting your body may be detrimental to your health, which is counterproductive for my goals. I was worried this is what I was doing with Insanity.
A few months ago, I read an interesting article here about reasons why exercise may be bad for you. It may hurt the heart, cause inflammation, and is stressful. I suddenly realized I should stop the intense workouts that I had with Insanity and started looking for something mild-moderate – just enough to feel active but not enough to stress myself out. This was when I stumbled on DDP Yoga.
Step #2: DDP Yoga
DDP Yoga is an exercise program that focuses on elements of yoga, traditional fitness, and dynamic resistance. There is no running or jumping. I felt my heart rate go up, but I was not significantly out of breath. This was the exact intensity I was looking for in my workouts.
Over the next few weeks, I felt the effects of DDP Yoga workouts on my posture and muscle tone. I did not gain weight or lose tone after stopping my high-impact insanity workouts (which is what I was afraid of!). With DDP Yoga, I don’t feel like exercise is a chore. It is easy to do, and that’s the workout I need for long-term health. 2 years later, I am still happy and satisfied with my results from DDP Yoga.
What I Loved About DDP Yoga
- It was the perfect intensity: After my concern with Insanity, I was happy to find that DDP Yoga provided me with a workout intensity that felt more natural to me. I was sweating, but I wasn’t about to faint from exhaustion.
- It will not get boring very soon: The package for DDP Yoga includes many more videos to choose from compared to Insanity. Each workout varies from 10 to 40 minutes and you can choose individual videos or combine them for variety.
- I could do it at home with no additional equipment: Just like Insanity, DDP Yoga allowed me to exercise in the convenience of my own home, using just my body and no additional equipment. Plus, the amount of space required for DDP Yoga is much smaller compared to Insanity.
- Light-impact exercise: Unlike with Insanity, DDP Yoga does not involve any running or jumping, so it is much harder to get injured or impact the joints and muscles.
- I was excited to do it: Since DDP Yoga was easier for me to complete, I didn’t dread my workouts. I was excited to do it because I didn’t feel like I was about to start torturing myself. To this day, this helps me feel motivated and excited about maintaining my fitness and health.
Insanity vs DDP Yoga - Comparison
|Intensity||High||Low - Moderate|
|Duration||30-60 minutes per workout, |
60 days total
|10-40 minutes per workout,
13 weeks total
|Nutrition Guide Included?||Yes||Yes|
|Appropriate for Beginners?||No||Yes|
Bottom Line: Insanity and DDP Yoga are both phenomenal workouts. Insanity is very hard. DDP Yoga is not. If you’re looking for a challenge, go with Insanity. You’ll be surprised by what you can achieve with your body. However, if you’re looking for a long-term workout to keep your muscle tone and stay fit, I would recommend DDP Yoga, as it is not stressful and you’re more likely to benefit long-term. But that’s just my 2 cents!
For a full review of DDP Yoga, click here.
UTHFA blog contributor