Parrot Review: SHAUN WEEK

7

My previous review of YouV2 was such a punishing assault to my manhood that I dang near had to go on hormone therapy.  Thankfully Shaun T has also recently created a new workout series that may have me once again producing lean, rich testosterone of my own accord.

Shaun Week is as the name implies, a week long BOD exclusive workout program that follows in the tradition of Focus T25.  So as I curse the darkness that was YouV2, let’s see if Beachbody can redeem themselves.

Insane Basics

Time: 31 minutes

First we have to have a little pep talk in a private room because Shaun has heard you need some encouragement.  No doubt he’s heard rumors of what a despicable wretch with no motivation you are and can barely hold down his lunch.  After that we join the cast and hit the floor running.

cardio_sw
The cast sort of gives off a "California Values" vibe if you get what I'm saying.

While the name says ‘basic’, the workout is really anything but that.  While it is indeed a quick intro to workouts coming after, it’s going to give you a good burn in doing so.

Pure Cardio

Time: 26 minutes

Shaun T cardio is almost always plyometric in nature so the legs get a resistance bonus you wouldn’t normally receive when running to the fridge.  Lots of the moves such as Scissor Power Knees require a certain level of co-ordination to pull off, but the lady with the Bride of Frankenstein hairdo in the back row provides the modifier.

sw_hair
It's alive...IT'S ALIIIIIVE!!!

Insane Weights

Time: 33 minutes

Finally, it’s time to get throw iron around like a drunken Thor of Odinson.

sw_weights
Better have a recovery drink on standby if you know what's good for you.

Rather than simply do curls and presses like a total noob, each move is a dynamic combo.  For example: Squat, curl, press combo would be one rep.  After that Shaun adds some rows, burpees and whatever else he feels like throwing in your face.  Choose your weight in the lighter to medium range as going all “Sagi” will likely just get yourself killed.

25 Abs

Time: 28 minutes

Day 4 gives us us a solid abdominal assault.  There are a couple new faces in the crowd to expand my imaginary social circle since my friends no longer return my calls.

yv2_shake
Tell people you did YouV2, and suddenly you're a pariah.

The workout is generally in 2 parts:  crunch motions and plank/core.  I know Shaun doesn’t like to call them crunches, but since it quacks like a duck I’m calling them crunches.

Ripsanity

Time: 43 minutes

With a longer running time and a name that could be from an Wes Craven movie, Ripsanity has aggressive expectations.  I would advise mixing some ginko biloba in your workout drink because you have some intense combos to remember.

sw_ripsanity
Bucket on standby...

There are 4 combos that start hard enough, and then get downright nuts.  Then once you’re finished Shaun delivers a sucker-punch by closing the workout with the old warm-up taken from the original Insanity.  Remember those miserable things that felt like a workout in themselves?  Like an old friend has returned to borrow your chainsaw.

Speed 4.0

Time: 31 minutes

The T25 Speed workouts are some of my cardio favorites.  Almost right down to the soundtrack ( which is one of the best ), we follow in that fine pedigree.

sw_speed4
Everything you love about T25 Speed and a little bit more.

Everything feels on par with Speed 3 until round two which brings plank-combos to a new level.  The last eight minutes take it from the top.

Dig Deep

Time: 27 minutes

We finally come to the end of our adventure as all hands are on deck to give Shaun Week the sendoff.  This is straight up cardio with a plyometric focus.  There are 14 moves at 1 minute each and as usual there’s a lot of hops, jumps and general Insanity-flavored activity.

This also means the last of the inspirational sayings that precede each workout.  I’m not sure if they possess any more philosophical insight than a greeting card, but I guess they mean well.

shaun3_16
Shaun 3:16

CONCLUSION

Shaun Week feels very much like a continuation of Focus T25.  It does not come close to the punishing assault of Max 30 ( except Ripsanity ) so the middle ground is very much welcome for us mere mortals.

Music is a mix of tracks from Insanity, Focus T25 and Max 30 with a few originals.  This makes sense from a budgetary standpoint as this was directly sent to BOD at launch.  I’m not sure if there are any plans to bring it to DVD but I doubt it.  Making original content for their streaming service is probably top priority now to get their hands on that cold, hard subscription cash.

Shaun T is his usual supportive self.  He’s constantly telling you to push but in all honesty never really does more than that.  That might be what makes him a success; an authentic display of support.  Many other trainers try the same tactic but few pull it off at Shaun’s level.

In all I give Shaun Week 4.5 Feathers out of 5.  If you’re a Beachbody on Demand customer, then committing a week of your life to this is a no-brainer.  But it doesn’t take Bruce Wayne to see the real plan here; this is a tool to convince people to give BOD a try.  Combined with the soon to be released week-long workouts from Tony and Sagi, Beachbody might well be on their way to filling their Scrooge McDuck vault.

sc_duck
I'm starting to feel like a lot of those shekels were mine.

© 2017, John Paul Parrot. All rights reserved.

8.1 Great T25 Followup

In keeping with the tradition of Focus T25, Shaun T offers a week long program to help lure people to Beachbody's streaming service.

  • Trainer 8
  • Music 8
  • Production Values 8
  • Strength 8
  • Cardio 8.5

About Author

John Paul Parrot ( aka. The Dysfunctional Parrot ) is a disgruntled Systems Analyst who wanders the Canadian wastelands saving small villages with the power of Kung Fu.  His chair is also a little too close to the twenty year old microwave.  As you can well imagine, this has had certain side effects.

  • thevictoriousgecko

    Shaun Week sounds way too much like Shark Week!

  • John Paul Jones

    http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-beachbody-20170829-story,amp.html

    Somewhat related, although I imagine that a lot of people might sign up for BOD and forget as much, analogous to gym memberships automatically renewing. The OD business model seems like a must have in our Torrent-ed world (for fitness video providers)

    Anyhow, another solid review. I felt as though Shaun Week was more of an intro to the Shaun T style than a continuation of Focus T25. However, as I think about it, Ripsanity and Speed 4.0 were harder than their T25 counterparts.

  • RC

    More Shaun T material! I like it! Gives me more options to plug them into my schedules for Plyo and Cardio days and I like the 30-45min timeframes as well. The Asylums are still my ST favourites by far! Nothing has come close.

  • Santiago Trestini

    Hey Parrot! I’d like your opinion on a fitness plan I’m trying to make. You see, I tried to do Insanity but couldn’t keep up. It was just too advanced. However, I simply cannot quit the beautiful bastard that Shaun is and dream of completing the entire Insanity series. As such, I’m following this plan for roughly a year starting this Monday, and I’d like your opinion on it.

    Focus T25 Alpha, Beta, and Gamma
    Insanity
    Insanity: MAX 30
    Asylum
    Asylum/Insanity hybrid (the one that comes already in the Asylum playbook)
    Asylum 2
    Asylum 1 and 2 hybrid (also from the playbook)
    [I’m doing all these with the deluxe, extra workouts]

    I simply like these because rest is short and keeps me active the whole time, and Shaun T is just an amazing trainer with impeccable soundtracks. What do you think of this? Do you believe it to be overkill? Do you believe I should place one workout somewhere else? Just say whatever comes to mind. Keep up the great work!

    • It’s a good progression. My only concern ( which would be for myself ) is the placement of the original Insanity. I found it was too hard on the knees and might make moving into Max 30 difficult. However, if you’re young and indestructible then go for it.

      • Santiago Trestini

        Thanks! Do you think I should do MAX 30 before Insanity then? I plan on taking a recovery week between each of the exercises anyway. As such, how do you think it should be? Full rest the whole week, light cardio by jogging, or do Core Cardio & Balance the whole week just as it would be in the middle of the original Insanity?

        • ktern

          I’m actually of the opinion that MAX30 is pretty much a replacement for the original Insanity, superior in a lot of ways (but also with some downsides, mostly in losing those excellent stretching segments that used to happen right after the warmup in the original).

          Anyway, if you want to do the whole thing just for the heck of it, I’d place T25 Gamma after OG Insanity and do the low-impact variants for a week or two. No shame there, Gamma is very lifting-focused and you won’t miss out on too much of the important stuff by doing so. Consider doing something similar before moving into each Asylum cycle, unless you want to destroy all your joints.