Monday, November 12, 2012

Insanity vs. 30 Days of Discipline

I am by no means a workout buff.  However, you know the ole Captain is a strong advocate of working out and maintaining your physique.  This is not only a requirement to be able to attract women, but it is also a MANDATORY requirement on your part if you are dating/married to a significant other and demand she remain physically attractive as well. 

Of course, I view everything through the lens of economics and so I am looking for the most effective and efficient workout regimen.  I've tried many things and intend on trying others, but today I wanted to quickly review the "Insanity" workout vs. Victor Pride's "30 Days of Discipline."

I started Insanity precisely a month ago.  I did the first month, took all the measurements, did all the math and the results were very impressive.

What I mean by "the results were very impressive" is the number of exercises I did during my "fitness test" at the beginning of Insanity increased quite dramatically.  I nearly doubled the number of "leg slappers," "hip flexers," "high knee thingies" and all the other crap you test on. 

Only one problem.

I didn't look any better naked and nobody cares about how many "knee slappers" you do.

I'm sure my cardio improved.  I'm sure my heart rate and blood pressure improved, but there was not ONE SINGLE visual improvement.  And this INCLUDED a STRICT change in my diet (for the better).

I was pissed frankly because the workouts are hard and demanding.  I put a lot of effort into it AND made sure I maxed out all the time.  I was CERTAIN I would start to look ripped, or at least toned, but as I looked in the mirror, NOTHING.

It dawned on me that the vast majority of Insanity is for weight loss and toning your legs/butt.  Probably great for women, but not for already skinny guys looking to build up muscle.

So I switched back to arguably the simplest work out regimen I've ever done and that is Victor Pride's 30 Days of Discipline

The work out is very simple:

100 push ups a day
100 sit ups a day
100 crunches a day

Admittedly I had some carry over from when I last did Victor's work out as well as a rather intense jiujitsu training, so I was able to start knocking out 85-90 push ups in one shot, but soon I was back to 100 in a row.  The results immediately start to visually show. 

I spoke with Victor and asked him, basically, WTF?

He said Insanity, though insane and great for cardio, is just yet another fad workout regimen that aims to be marketable to a large audience, but not specific individuals.

This makes sense because a 150 pound guy obviously has different goals than a 200 pound girl.  But that considered, I'm still quite impressed with the efficiency of 30 Days of Discipline.  Insanity workouts last about 40-45 minutes, 60 if you get to the second month.  30 Days of Discipline, after you get proficient at it, only takes about 15-20 minutes and you're not dying.  Throw in a nice 5 mile jog and you're not on the verge of puking (like Insanity), but you're feeling good and enjoying your work out.

I will be starting P90X next, but I fear what Victor said is going to simply apply again.  Until that time though, however, I strongly recommend Victor's 30 Days of Discipline.

He did not pay me to write this.

I'm not doing this out of a favor to him.

I'm writing this because I don't want any of you poor SOB's to go through the hell I did with Insanity when there's a hell of an easier and more effective work out!


Stryker said...

A slight correction: you have 100 crunches listed. It should be 100 squats in addition to the push ups and sit ups.

Have several friends that have done P90X. If they stick to the diet they lose some weight and they report feeling better. i suspect the lack of 'visual results' stems from the total and utter over training that these programs involve. Victor's program is a great base, and can be improved with the simple addition of some pull ups and sprints and/or jumping rope.

Kettle bells also give you a lot of bang for the buck with just a few exercises.

Elijah said...

That's great but I'm a big fan of training heavy. So get yourself a barbell, 150kg of weights and a power-rack.

Faust said...

Anything that works your pecs and arms makes you look great, and you can't get a better workout for those two than pushups. Some people will tell you pushups are for endurance, and not for actually improving your strength or appearance. Those people are idiots. (Or they're benching 350 and are past the point where pushups can help them.)

I went and bought the book based off your recommendation; it's a little short but it has some solid advice. Victor Pride runs a good site and is a good guy.

Aeoli Pera said...

I wonder if better cardio doesn't show in some other way. Bright eyes, sunny disposition, clear skin, that sort of thing.

Not that girls are often attracted to any of those things. Men, sure.

Rachel & Robert said...

Crossfit. 'Nuff said.

Anonymous said...

Love the site Captain. A word of advice: PLEASE don't waste your time with P90X. Read (and do) Starting Strength instead. You will see much better results lifting heavy three times a week; AND it will take much less of your time.

While I'm commenting, your post a few weeks ago about underemployment is too true. I recently graduated with a Mech E degree and I'm stuck doing data entry. oh well, more time to research a side job. I saw your link to Apocalypse Cometh and am seriously considering HVAC or diesel training. When I'm free of the corporate grind I will have you to thank.

get swole, enjoy the decline!

-a retired college footballer (and econ minor)

Greg Freeman said...

Join a boxing gym. Intense workout that is as much mental as physical. That, and it incorporates self defense.


jaericho said...

Thanks forh the post, I must try this.

I tried Insanity for the first month and I had the same experience as you: I notice a big improvement in my performance of the exercises and lost a little weight. However, I hated the workouts. I had a friend go thru the workouts with me and we'd check in with each other every day. That is the only way I'd continue. You are completely accurate when you say that you'd want to puke afterwards. I don't want to deal with that.

However, I also did the One Hundred Push Ups challenge too. I also noticed a big improvement in my pushup count, and I enjoyed it much more than Insanity. to the radio said...

If you have to go to a gym to maintain your physique then you are in the wrong line of work.

Take the stairs.
Shovel your driveway.
There's a lot of things you can do in your everyday life to keep fit.

As a banquet manager, I spent years on the floor with my staff throwing around tables, chairs, portabars and portable staging.
I never missed a chance to mop a floor in my suit and tie.
Mainly because nobody can mop a floor better than I can.
One reason was to show them how it was done and another was to get some exercise.

Now, as a comm tech, I never miss a chance to carry something that other people put on a cart.

Anonymous said...

My thought is that ~80% of you fat loss is going to come in the kitchen and not in the gym. To that point I have gone paleo this year and now am on an intermittent fasting routine. I'm 6'5" and YTD weight loss is 55lbs from an initial starting weight of 275lbs (currently 15% body fat with all loss coming from fat with some muscle gains).

For workouts go check out Doug Mcguff's weight program. I do this once a week with a trainer (you could substitute a friend). Additionally I use a TRX workout + High Intensity Interval Training (look up "Super 8s" on 2 times a week. With my remaining days of the week I go out and have fun outside with all my new found energy.

Good luck.

Anonymous said...

If you want to pack some muscle on whilst staying lean, your best bet is slow bulking using the Leangains protocol.

Stop messing around with 100s of reps, get down a gym and start doing your big compound lifts (squats, deadlifts, and bench press), and lift heavy. Do sets of 8-12 for hypertrophy, work out each muscle group twice a week, and get your nutrition right. 3 sessions a week of an hour each is all it takes.

I've put together programmes for many of my friends, and I live with a personal trainer. Give me a shout if you want any info on it.

Andrew said...

Dance: If you want to work those pecs, crush lift stuff.

Carry things without using your fingers to grip them, through using crushing pressure from your pecs.

taterearl said...

I lost more weight by eating right, taking vitamins and minerals, and walking around the nice parks.

Now that being said...I've been a gym rat since college. If you have a steady supply of benching, squatting, and deadlifting...those are the big 3 that work out your muscles the most. My goal is to get 1000 pounds between the three.

AverageMarriedDad said...

I've been a runner, long distance triathlete, done Insanity, Crossfit, Starting Strength and am now doing Outlaw programming. I leaned out from Insanity after 60 days (after being skinny fat from the endurance stuff), not much more muscles. SS put on some beef, Crossfit leaned me out while keeping the strength. Outlaw is getting me stronger again while keeping short (6-12 minutes usually) HIT cardio and weight work. IMO, heavy weights mixed with short HIT cardio and good diet are the best of all worlds and allow for decent recovery and looking good naked.

Paul said...

Captain: 30 days of discipline the same for all body types? If I was to do it, should I also aim for 100 / 100 / 100, even though I'm 6' 220 lbs?

Also, can you confirm if it's 100 crunches of squats?

Are there any diet restrictions? I assume I can't eat whatever I want while doing this exercise, and expect results?

Judging by the name, it seems like I should do it for 30 days. What do I do after?

Thanks for the help.

Anonymous said...

Cappy Cap, I looked at the Pride's website. All is great so far, but his philosophy is a little whack. "Heavy porn watchers are always Low-T having, light avoiding, pussy repellent boys. It’s embarrassing to be a masturbater and it is shameful. No matter what the degenerate liars on tv say, it is nothing to be proud of." I'm still going to try the workout you mentioned. But Jesus Christ wtf is that??!?!?!

Anonymous said...

To answer the question if it's squats or not. According to the book "30 Days of Discipline," it's 100 pushups, 100 situps, and 100 body squats for 30 days.

Also, in the book Pride says that the above workout is, "in addition to the regular weight-lifting routine every man of pride and discipline should be doing."

I don't like his anti-masturbation stance.

Mike said...

Cap: You, like me, are a naturally thin guy, so if YOU want to see results, then YOU need to GAIN weight, specifically muscle mass.
Note that this is NOT the situation or goal of most people, so most modern fitness fads, which tend to focus on core strength and "toning" and weight LOSS will do nothing for YOU.
So you need to go old-school, which generally means low reps with heavy weight. If you want efficiency, focus on the Big Three - squats, deadlifts and bench. Others have already said this.
I've had good results with anabolic burst programs like ABCDE by Torbjorn Akerfeldt. Charles Poliquin and Stuart McRobert are other guys you should look into.

Dr. Illusion said...

Why is everyone putting this guy down because he is against masturbating?

I see no point in masturbation. The only place I spill my seed is inside a womans body. Pick your orifice of choice. Takingmatters into my ownhands gives no satisfaction.

A mans drive and motivation comes, to some degree, from his sack. Don't drain that guy.

sunhater said...

I suggest you to do some bodyweight exercises: 1 arm push-ups, planche push ups, pull ups and L-Sits (2 chairs L-sits).

With this stuff, 3 times a week (2 days rest ) you will become very strong and ripped without having to buy a barbell.

Anonymous said...

late to the party.

p90x is great. i put on muscle and lost fat. i've gotten nothing but compliments. it's because you use actual weights to build muscle. Insanity provides none of that so you will get lean but not 'ripped'.

there is a point where p90x will need to be modified if you want more gains. i quit the pushups and went to using a bench because pushups were no longer giving me results.

or you can just get p90x2 :P