My Insanity workout ritual

July 24, 21 | Hacks

I discovered Shaun T’s Insanity workouts about 5 years ago. It honestly changed my fitness life. I had tried to find a workout routine I could do on the go (as I was travelling heavily). I had experimented with Tony Horton’s P90X3, but struggled with many of the exercises. Some were too difficult and I got discovered, or needed equipment which I didn’t have on the road.

Shaun T was a huge win. His voice is motivating and encouraging. The exercises build up over time enabling an increase in fitness and stamina. The workouts follow a High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) approach with bursts of high intensity moves in intervals with breaks in between. This supposedly achieves greater results that lower intensity exercises over more time.

Insanity Max:30 is designed as a 2-month long fitness boost. The first month is 4 weekly cycles, with a new 30-min exercise for 5 days, followed by a stretch day and an off-day.  Then the programme switches gear for month 2, where the cycle of exercises gets a little harder. The programme motives you to push yourself by asking you to write down the moment you max out, i.e. need a break. Then you’re encouraged to  beat your max out time the following week.  I found this was powerful trick to push myself to beat my own times until I could complete full 30min.

But how to make a ritual out of it? After completing a few 2-month rounds of Insanity Max:30, I started repeating the month 2 workouts as my wake-up routine. This has been especially useful during pandemic lockdowns with gyms and outdoor activities limited. I have since added resistance training, the subject of a separate post.

One challenge: getting my hands on Insanity Max30. I purchased the DVD set but the disks started degrading after multiple use, so I had to buy a second set and then copy the workouts on my laptop. They’re difficult to find now. There is an on-demand subscription via but it doesn’t fit my needs and does not allow downloading the workouts for long-term use.

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