Day 13: Pure Cardio & Cardio Abs

Yesterday, I naïvely shoehorned two workouts together only to find out that I’m doomed to do two more today.

You see, Day 13 on the Insanity workout schedule heralds the first official combining of two workouts in one day. Now if you’ve been following this blog all the way through, you’ll know that Pure Cardio is a killer. It’s short but intense. To add a cardio-abdominal workout after that is, quite frankly, insane.

I paid dearly for doing two together yesterday (let’s just say my Insanity Pain Log looks like a bloodbath). However, I didn’t have time to split up today’s workouts so I decided to proceed with caution. I stomped around in such a sulk that the Cat vacated the room for most of the afternoon.

Pure Cardio is still like death to me. Fifteen 1 minute drills, back to back. And that’s only after you’ve passed out from the warm-up. The only thing that kept me going was the thought of having svelte legs and glutes of steel some day. Plus this is my last chance to fit in some last-minute muscle conditioning before Day 14’s Fitness Test.

You too can have hair like this

You too can have hair like this.

By now, you’ll have heard Mr T remind you incessantly to “keep the core tight”. As you can imagine, Cardio Abs is all about strengthening your abdominal muscles so that holding your core becomes second nature. In case you’re wondering how to ‘hold your core’, imagine you’re bracing your stomach for a punch (or ask a kind friend to mime punching your stomach if you’re feeling foolhardy). This is the position your stomach should adopt while you work through Insanity.

Mercifully, the Cardio Abs workout is only about 16 minutes long. This is wonderful news when you’re dripping with sweat post-Pure Cardio. But don’t be fooled – it’s still Shaun T, ergo it’s still demanding. The first 5 minutes involve incessant jumping so watch your knees and ankles and land softly. But you will then proceed to spend most of your time sitting on the floor like an upended turtle, lifting your legs and squeezing your glutes.

Now any workout that involves sitting or lying down gets my vote. However, it’s strange seeing Shaun T lying on the floor doing slow, controlled leg raises. You almost want to prod him with a stick every now and then to make sure he’s not broken.

With Cardio Abs, you’ll spend most of the time twisting, stretching and doing leg raises. The main thing to be careful about is looking after your back. After several minutes in hold, the C-sit position starts to get uncomfortable. It’s all too easy to overextend yourself and wind up with backache. Shaun T has posted a helpful video on the Team Beachbody website to clarify how you should hold yourself when doing the abdominal workouts.

Well, I’m sore, I’m tired but I’m happy to have burned off more calories than usual. Although it’s been a gruelling 48 hours in Insanity Land, the great thing about doing four workouts in two days is that I can now indulge in a delicious roast dinner with zero guilt!

If you cut the potatoes into quarters, the calories leak out.

If you cut the potatoes into quarters, the calories leak out.

How’s day 13 treating you? And what delicious, healthy meals have you allowed yourself since starting Insanity?

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2 thoughts on “Day 13: Pure Cardio & Cardio Abs

  1. I chuckled a little bit picturing Mr. T yelling at me to keep my core tight before I realized you were talking about shaun t… im a fool. In any case, I just found your blog and am enjoying the read. It’s nice to see how others are doing with Insanity.

    Keep it up and I hope round 2 treats you well.

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