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I'm Mickie. I run One Strong Southern Girl from Small Town, TN. I love what I do. I want you to remember me because I helped changed your life.
I get asked this question a lot:
“What are the best Beachbody workout programs for women?”
First of all, here are the two things that make a workout (or exercise program) amazing for me:
The length of the routine, the personality of the instructor, how much equipment is required, etc. are all important to me, too.
But it’s how effective and fun a program is that keeps me going back to it.
It’s also important to mix things up frequently. Doing the same series or workouts over and over is not only boring but can lead to a fitness plateau (where you stop seeing results).
Variety is a vital component to an effective exercise program.
With all this in mind, here are my top picks for:
2022 UPDATE-Before we get started I’d like to say that I need to add Transform 20 to this list (but haven’t yet). You can read a complete review of that program right here!
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There’s just something about kicking and punching that’s awesome. (It makes me feel like a warrior, and who doesn’t want to feel like Jennifer Garner in Electra?? Or Wonder Woman, of course.)
You won’t need equipment (or weapons) to do any of the routines in Core De Force but you will need some space.*
*An area about 5 feet by 7 feet will probably work (but the more space you have the better).
Some of the combinations take you several steps forward or laterally. And of course you’ll need enough space to kick and punch without taking out a lamp or slamming your foot into a wall.
A few of the Core De Force routines have combinations that will take a few tries to master but most people will have them conquered by the 3rd or 4th time.
Here’s what Core De Force looks like:
I love Core De Force for people who want a good cardio routine but get tired of traditional circuits and don’t want to buy any equipment.
9-Week Control Freak is a total body cardio and strength training program lead by Beachbody ‘supertrainer’ Autumn Calabrese.
The theme of the program is about taking control of the things about your physical health that you can–your committment, effort, nutrition and rest.
The goal of the workouts is total body toning and (optionally) weight loss.
You will need some equipment to do the workouts.
Piyo is a blend of yoga and Pilates.
Chalene Johnson is a pro at cueing you through the exercises in this series. The moves are unique and more challenging than you might think.
Check out this video to see the way you’ll be moving your body in Piyo. (They sure know how to make a workout look sexy, don’t they?)
You’re not going to be in a full ‘flop sweat’ (as Tony Horton would say) doing Piyo, but you’ll still burn a decent amount of calories.
Piyo Drench is my favorite routine in the program.
The thing I like about Piyo is that the program works muscles that you probably don’t hit on a regular basis (which is a good thing). That means you’ll wake up surprisingly sore after Piyo (and ready to do it again).
I like to throw in a Piyo workout the day after a heavy strength-training routine. It does a great job of stretching things back out and giving my joints a holiday.
If you’ve been to One Strong Southern Girl before then you already know I’m a huge fan of Insanity Max:30. (I actually love every Insanity program but Max:30 is my favorite.)
Shaun T and the Beachbody gurus created a masterpiece with Insanity Max:30.
Here’s what it looks like:
There are 10 intense cardio workouts included in the series and every one of them is incredible.
Like Core De Force, you won’t need any equipment (except maybe a mat if you’re on a hard surface).
Unlike Core De Force, there are no complex combinations to figure out in Insanity Max:30.
Any woman can do a version of each exercise the first time through (if you miss a few reps it’ll be because you’re so out-of-breath, not because the steps were too complicated).
For a general overview of the entire program I recommend you read:
Turbo Fire isn’t one of Beachbody’s newest programs but it’s still at the top of my list when it comes to recommendations for women.
You can’t beat this program if you’re looking for a satisfying workout that’s also really FUN.
Turbo Fire has the same flavor as Core De Force but Chalene Johnson is nothing like the Jericho/Joel team in Core De Force. (I’d describe Jericho and Joel as professionally intense, rather than energetic.)
Chalene’s energy level in these routines is truly contagious and her genuine excitement doing the workout adds a certain ‘umph’ that’s unique to all her programs.
I go back to Turbo Fire over and over.
*TurboFire been ‘unavailable’ on Amazon for a while now so you’ll need a BOD membership to do the Turbo Fire workouts (it’s worth signing up for the free trial to try this program if you like kickboxing and good music.)
The 645 program is a 13-week program with 45-minute workouts lead by Amoila Cesar.
The workouts are designed for strength training, improved mobility, athletic training and (optionally) weight loss.
The only equipment used in the routines are dumbbells and exercise loops.
The program is ideal for the intermediate to advanced exerciser.
I love these routines for toning (and you’ll love Amoila Cesar).
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