A lot of people have asked me about the Kayla Itsines Bikini Body Guide. I didn’t want to review a product I hadn’t tried so after I had a bunch of friends this summer ask me my opinion, I decided to give it a go.
A year ago, someone sent me a copy of the PDF and that was what I used for my BBG review. What appealed to me was the simple format and short time commitment. The workouts are about 35 minutes with a warm up.
*As a disclaimer, I didn’t look at the nutrition or BBG community at all. I also didn’t follow the workout calendar strictly. I basically did 1 to 3 workouts a week starting in July. The program suggests starting with 2 workouts and eventually adding in a third Kayla workout each week plus 2 days of steady state cardio and 1 day of HIIT. Itsines recommends walking for the steady state and a HIIT workout made up of 15 30-second sprints with 30-seconds of rest in between. I did do the “HIIT workout” sometimes in the middle of a 3 mile run.
So for a review of the workouts…
I liked the use of time.
With Tommy, I don’t have a ton of time to workout. I would often be plenty sore after just 28 minutes of hard work.
Most* moves felt effective.
There is nothing worse than a silly move you can’t figure out or one that is just too easy. Some were overwhelmingly harder than others and I didn’t agree with all of them (see below). Four sets of 50 jump lunges in 24 minutes felt like torture by the last couple of weeks. Where as the 40 bicycle crunches felt more than doable.
Despite thinking it was quad heaving, my glutes were surprisingly sore!
At first glance, I thought the legs would be hitting my quads more than my glutes. I prefer a good glute workout because I am already a quad dominate runner so when my booty was sore, I was pleasantly surprised.
I liked the format.
The 4 move 7 minute AMRAP was a fun and simple. It was over before you were bored. For more details on the workouts, watch the video above.
The HIIT style nature made me a faster runner.
Despite not running much for a month, these workouts helped my get back my pre-Tommy speed thanks to the many jumps.
The abs were not my favorite.
There were way too many sit ups. I just stopped doing them. I didn’t want to at first since I was still modifying abs for a postpartum body when I started. But I wanted to actually review the program by doing it so I did what she suggested and they were ineffective, took too much time and left me with a mediocre workout that had my back throbbing. I did enjoy some of the other movements and grew to like the harder ones once my core strength came back. I did see definition that I hadn’t since pre Tommy but this wasn’t without back pain… See the video above for examples.
Heavy on chest and very little back exercises.
Pre trainer days, I rarely paid attention to back exercises but as a personal trainer, you quickly learn how important it is to train muscles that work together. If you only train your chest and neglect stretching it, AND sit at a desk all day, you are setting yourself up for serious back pain. Think about it… If you chest is tight from all the training and your back is weak, you’ll develop rounded forward shoulders and bad posture which will lead to lower back pain. With a large baby, I already have that so these workouts were not the best for me.
Overall, I did like the workouts with the proper modifications. I saw results not only in my muscle definition but also while running. I was faster from doing just 2 HIIT workouts a week.
For my complete review, check out my YouTube video above.