Week 2: The Workout

The second week of Body Back is a wrap and I am totally in love with this program. In this post I am going to describe how the workouts are structured (and a little more about why I love it so).

The workouts are 60 minutes. The exercises vary from day to day but the class is formatted based on the principles of High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). If you are not familiar with HIIT programs they are a method known for building muscles and burning fat by “alternating between intense bursts of activity followed by fixed periods of less-intense activity or complete rest.” This means we go hard for a minute, then we rest. Repeat. Repeat again.

Most morning we will do multiple intervals featuring 1 minute of cardio, 1 minute of strength, and 1 minute of core. Typically, we do each interval 3 times before beginning a different set of exercises. We all wear heart monitors and the information (our heart rate and the zone we are in) is displayed on a screen to ensure we are at a resting rate before we begin our next exercise. It’s great getting some validation when I am working my butt off (in addition to feeling the burn), but the real benefit seems to be that I go harder during each exercise when I get immediate feedback.

Not every class follows that exact format though. One morning this past week we had 7 stations where we rotated after one minute at each station. It was one minute doing planks while gliding our feet in and out, a minute of shuffling back and forth while doing burpee squat hops at each corner, then on to the treadmill for a minute sprint. Next up the leg lift station, followed by sprinting to one end of the gym and high knees back. You get the idea! Each station was like a mini-obstacle course.

The workouts and results are addictive and as my muscles are gaining strength, the 60 minutes seems to be going faster each class. I am really pleased that I am feeling some ab muscles I typically consider hard to target, too. Not everyone is going to lose weight during this program, but they should certainly lose inches. In just two weeks I have noticed both sliding away. The nutrition component (which means I am simply tracking my calories and being more aware of what I am eating each day) has helped as well. I am planning to carry the food tracking habit forward even after the 8-week program is finished. I am also going to need to get some kind of fitness tracker that I can use daily as there seems to be a lot of motivation born from simply having the information.

And did I mention what we do during our cool down? At the end of each class we just lay there for a few minutes. Breathe in silence. It’s wonderful. And all of this is complete before my family (and many of my friends) get their feet out of bed.