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REVIEW: Insanity Asylum Volume 2 – Part 2 of 2



Part One is complete and now the review concludes with the last DVD’s the the new Asylum Volume 2 series by Shaun T and Beachbody.  As expected, I’m tired, sore, and ready to go!!   YEEEAHHHHH!!!!…thud.  ( collapses in a heap )


Time: 40 minutes

Lower/upper back and abs are the name of the game today.  I always appreciate Shaun’s attention to detail when it comes to core work as he really focuses on the back when so many others only see the abs.  In the end you’ll be more durable because if it.

This one gives you the option to up the ante by occasionally using the pull-up bar, or you can stick to using weights.  That really makes this seem less repetitive when you can switch it up at whim.  For example I opted to start with the pull-up bar and then grabbed some weights to finish off.

The end of this is a move called 5-count abs which at first shouldn’t be too bad but by the end it may resemble the sensation of having a canon shot at your gut.

Quote of Dread: “good…freaking…luck!”


Time: 20 minutes

You can’t throw a rock without hitting another ab-workout.  The suckers are everywhere, and as such Shaun has a lot of contenders for his ex-Hip-Hop Abs crown.

One theme that seems to run common with all of Shaun’s ab workouts is that he’s not primarily into crunches, but prefers ab-pulses and isometric holds.   That sort of thing makes this a different way to spend twenty minutes instead of doing various sit ups.  Plus you get to see what Shaun’s shoes are today.  Blue with white stripe shoes and shorts.  The man’s shoe-rack  must be the size of Kansas.

But how does it feel?  Ab Shredder is akin to visiting a prison and yelling to all the inmates that their Mom’s are whores, and the first shot to your gut is free.  Yeah.  It’s like that.  Ow.


Time: 31 minutes

It’s casual Friday for Shaun and his urban pose as everyone gets together for a nice and badly needed stretch.  What is strangely distracting is the one lady who has a pant leg shorter than the other which seems like it would be a lot of work keeping it there.  Is this some new fangled fashion thing you no-good kids are doing these days?  Why I outta…

This is a good, all-around stretch and not much can be added.  You bend over, roll over, grab legs, stretch calves and hamstrings.  Typical fare.  It’s also done on the day before and after Championship which is really a nice break.  Oh, and it’s black shoes and shorts for Shaun today.


Time: 60 minutes

Hard to say if this is harder than Asylum: Game Day in terms of intensity, but Championship is far more complex as co-ordination and agility will be pushed to the extreme.  Because of this, Championship will actually become harder the better and more familiar you get with it.

Like Game Day, you do moves loosely based on professional sports such as soccer, gymnastics, speed skating, etc.  Some moves and sequences are a little more advanced than most will be able to pull off initially.  For me it got to the point I had to occasionally stop and look at my screen while tilting my head like a confused chicken about to have its head lopped off.

The workout ends with an overtime sequence of crazy agility jump drills that you are supposed to keep track of how many you do.  I gave up counting when it became obvious my metaphorical workout truck had fishtailed into the ditch, but it is a good measure of how well you’re progressing.

Oh, and its blue-shoes and shorts day for Shaun.  That guy must be made of money.

Quote of Dread: “you…are…halfway there.”


Give Shaun T his due, the man has just knocked another one out of the park with Asylum: Volume 2.

Let’s start with the good.  It should go without saying that Beachbody takes its role seriously when it comes to making fitness programs and certainly doesn’t feel like playing second fiddle to anyone.  That is evident by the quality of the production with Asylum Volume 2.  The workouts are well planned, obviously well rehearsed, the music professionally made and the set perfect.  You will not find a better looking program in its class.  Productions like this make you honestly feel embarrassed for the glut of wannabe imitators.

And of course, Shaun T himself.  This is a guy who takes his job seriously and is Hell bent on motivating you to reach your goals.   Yet he does it in a way you have to admire.  Serious, yet always with the humorously cool behavior that makes you want to give him one more push up.

If I had to dig up some nitpicking criticisms it would be that this is only available on DVD and not  BlueRay.  That may be fine enough for most people but production values this bad-ass demand HD.   In fact, I say go beyond BlueRay!  The sheer volumes of AppleTV, Roku, or Boxee’s being sold just proves people want to move away from optical media.   If Beachbody wanted to be cutting edge I would suggest they sell their programs on such venues as the iTunes store.   It would sure save guys like me time from having to rip to my AppleTV!  The problem with that however would be the imminent deathblow to their MLM coaches not selling physical programs.  Too bad.

Asylum Volume 2 just does what it does so well: gives you 30 days of ass kicking on a level usually reserved for athletes.   It also builds on the successful foundation of Volume 1.  In fact, they also include a hybrid-schedule so you can put then together and really give yourself a beat-down.

As I’ve mentioned in the past, be careful about going past 30 days because it can start to wear you down.  I always like to mix an Insanity/Asylum run with something less impact like Body Beast or P90X/2.   That way I feel I retain the best of both worlds without shooting my poor knees all to Hell.  The good news is that there seems to be less plyo-impact with Volume 2 so you might be able to go 60 days straight  if you had the gumption.  Just don’t say I didn’t warn ya!

4.8 Feathers out of 5

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.



  1. Bret Eldridge

    December 31, 2020 at

    Parrot, I have read your reviews ongoing for some time now and am mostly and All X guy, using workouts from the Original, 1 on 1, both X2 and X3, depending on the week. Scary, but I agree with every review you post after I work the program and evaluate. I do love Shaun T for cardio and some Sagi for muscle building. I haven’t ventured into The Work or into Asylum 1 or 2 due to having two artificial hips and one artificial knee. At 53, I was a lifelong muscle head but am more about functional fitness with still loving muscle building as much as being 53 will allow. I enjoy Autumn and a yoga workout or two a week mixed in as well.
    I love your site and love the reviews! Keep it going brother, I too have a gorgeous fellow BOD junkie who I have been married to for 20 years, keeping me grounded. She hears me laughing while reading your reviews and it confirms her ongoing suspicions that I am nuts! Happy New Year to you, Mrs. Parrot and your kids, who have surely gotten all grown up! Kudos from Georgia’.

  2. Downtown Oliver

    February 18, 2014 at

    Mr. Dys Par,

    Did you know that on or around January 28, Tony Horton posted the link to your P90X3 review on facebook? You may have gotten a surge of comments and views then. I had ran into your reviews before, but this got me reading all of your content again. I like X programs because of the emphasis on stretching, rehab, recovery, and yoga. Should a Sane person, like myself, delve into Insanity or Body Beast programs expect to get injured?

    • Dysfunctional Parrot

      February 18, 2014 at

      Oh trust me…I knew! I was in the process of upgrading from shared hosting to VPS but decided to wait a couple days. In the meantime the traffic spike took me out for about an hour until I could expedite the switchover! It was a fun day all the same! The links from Tony alone hit almost 30K hits!

      Also noticing some traffic coming in from P90X3 Alice! Awww…my little site is all grown up!

      Now, regarding Body Beast…I say go for it. I really enjoyed it and many of the routines can be put into a P90X or Insanity hybrid setup for days you feel like really pumping iron!

      • Downtown Oliver

        February 19, 2014 at

        Pain in the Alice, from X3 The Challenge? She’s probably a coach, and all coaches are sharks.

        I’m going to try to get my hands on a copy of Body Beast upon your recommendation. Your final comment on it said you did about 60-70 days of BB. Did you get pumped up? Swelled? Do you look like the Hulk with a Parrot Head? Did you take the supplements…E&E, Summa, R&R? How often? Which ones do I need? I would rather do NONE! Can I get results without supplementation? I’m thinking it’s a scam to sell powder, and that what’s really important is eating 4,000-5,000 calories a day. But your write up of the BB program suggests the workouts are tough, fun, and legit.

        • Dysfunctional Parrot

          February 19, 2014 at

          Yup, did BB and indeed got some nice gains, in particular biceps and chest…which were sort of what I was hoping for! Regretfully I did not Hulk up to gamma-saturated levels.

          As for supplementation, I did not use anything from Beachbody as I feel some of their stuff is overpriced powder that you could get anywhere else for less. I also never use the carb powder ( maltodextrin…ie. GMO corn ) as it makes me sick as hell. I did use a protein powder supplement but it was just a brand name I bought at the grocery store.

          I also like using Vega Sport supplement as a post workout recovery drink, but that’s about it. No pills, nitro enhancers, summa or any of that other marketing crap. I did have a problem hitting the calorie load but then again I was going for all-around fitness and not massive size. The workout package is definitely one to have around as neither Shaun nor Tony really destroy muscle in the same way as Sagi.

          • Downtown Oliver

            February 19, 2014 at

            OK. I will do it the way you did then. No pre-workout EE because I don’t want to get injured. Regular diet ramped up in calories to offset the targeted pummeling of build and bulk stages. No R&R. Maybe I’ll find a drink at the grocery store. Maybe I’ll try Muscle Milk. Based on Tim Tebow’s results, I can expect to be kicked out of the NFL. I will wrap up this round of X3 on March 30, move on to TapouT XT for 90 days. Then, Body Beast. I might throw in some months of 10 Min Trainer in there with pull ups 2x a week. By Christmas, the president will be declaring America’s airports and harbors safe with me guarding them. If I could only find my shield. Meh, I won’t need it anymore.

          • Andrew Coyle

            June 7, 2016 at

            So, after that very specific schedule, how did you do @downtownoliver:disqus? Are you a ripped Beast of epic proportions?

          • Downtown Oliver

            June 7, 2016 at

            Hi Andrew. I’m a monster. I took on Iron Man in the Civil
            War…. LOL

            Looks like I wrote that in March 2014. I was finishing P90X3. I was disappointed with X3, injured by it, sick of Tony Horton, sick of P90X, and searching for new programs and ideas. That’s why I wanted to do TapouT and Body Beast.

            Here’s what I did:

            Round 11 Q1 2014 P90X3
            Round 12 Q2 2014 TapouT (9 weeks), P90X+ (4 weeks)
            Round 13 Q3 2014 10 Minute Trainer with Pull Ups (8 weeks),
            P90X (4 weeks)
            Round 14 Q4 2014 P90X (9 weeks), P90X2 (4 weeks)
            Round 15 Q1 2015 Body Beast
            Round 16 Q2 2015 P90X2
            Round 17 Q3 2015 Body Beast/P90X2
            Round 18 Q4 2015 P90X
            Round 19 Q1 2016 P90X Plus Doubles
            Round 20 Q2 2016 P90X2 (in progress)

            I used Round 18, 19, and 20 to reset my body. Like hitting the reset button and starting over. It’s been rejuvinating.

          • Andrew Coyle

            June 7, 2016 at

            Wow, impressive. Thanks for sharing.
            I must try harder :)
            My workouts are a total hybrid of whatever-I-darn-well-please. One day YO:30, the next Hip Hop Abs, then Asylum, then CIZE. I’m all about keeping the calories down and the workouts up (and changing it up to keep it interesting).

            I’m burning about 1000 calories less then what I intake, almost every day. But I just don’t seem to be shedding the fat. I’m going to throw in Body Beast and The Ultimate Yogi next.

          • Downtown Oliver

            June 7, 2016 at

            OK. Could you tell me more about YO:30? What is it? How do I get it? And The Ulitmate Yogi? What is it?

            Sounds like you and DP are like my wife; she cherry picks workouts day to day mostly from P90X, X3, DDP Yoga, various yoga discs she’s collected from GAIAM, etc.

            I have mixed views on Body Beast (BB), but I recommend to people all the time! It just shouldn’t be my Go To Program.

            1. I <3 the work outs. FUN. All are super!

            2. I like Sagi Kalev. He rips on these two guys all the time. Kind of funny. He's a bit of a bully, but it's all in good fun.
            3. It was easy for me to get motivated to do it everyday.
            4. It broke a plateau that I had for pull ups. Working my back and shoulders differently for three months improved my stabilizer muscles in a new way.


            1. The diet in terms of how much to eat. It's really hard to eat that many calories. Calculated 2800-3000 for me. SOOO hard. I used myfitnesspal to help me get there.
            2. The diet guide is confusing. The macros in terms of proportions as a percentage between protein, carbs, and fats, and which foods to eat and not eat is terribly difficult.
            3. Shedding the weight in Phase III was very difficult. I've only just recently got myself back to a more appropriate weight.
            4. Adding all of that new muscle mass made me feel slow, back pain came back, etc. Just aches and pains that I wasn't used to.

            I thought that BB would become regular in my rotation. For example, do a round of X and then BB. So I was planning P90X, BB, P90X2, BB, P90X3, BB, etc. I tried to do that, but I realized that my body (and my mind!) likes P90X better. Even though BB is fun to do everyday and helped me a lot, I just feel more like a P90X person.

            Rounds 18, 19, and 20 makes me feel like a new person, and I think that is the best, most optimal, sequence to do P90Xs.

          • Andrew Coyle

            July 6, 2016 at

            Cor, you have some serious dedication to your workouts. Respect.

            YO:30 is a 5 practice yoga series by Jake Ferree and is available on Xbox One’s Xbox Fitness program. This is being discontinued however, as apparently it’s too difficult to add new content (poor lambs). But his teaching style and the flow of the practices was simply perfect. This got me into yoga properly.

            I did originally first start yoga will DDPYoga. DDP’s style is very much of the dynamic resistance. Ensure you engage all your muscles as you perform all the routines. This was the workout that removed ALL my back pain (2 non-functioning discs in my lower spine).

            And as for The Ultimate Yogi, Mr Parrot has not long finished his review. Travis Eliot’s voice can take some getting used to, but his various yoga practices are quite the challenge and not for beginners.

            But I’ve found that hybridising my workouts and getting yoga in amongst my P90X and Body Beast workouts really are the most beneficial. Strength, power and endurance come through P90X and BB but balance and flexibility come through yoga. As well as the other calming and body benefits.

            I can now fold over and touch my toes with my legs straight. First time in at least 2 decades I can do that. Must be doing something right :)

          • Downtown Oliver

            June 6, 2017 at

            OK Andrew. I’m on board. I’ve decided that I am only hybridizing workouts for now on. I picked up a cheap copy of Asylum Vol 1 on ebay last week.

            Next up – Body Beast Asylum Hybrid starting July 3. I will finish up this final round of P90X in the meantime.

            Have you done a Body Beast / Asylum Hybrid before? Any recommendations?

            I have a problem because I’ve never done Asylum before. I recognize that I am going against the grain by hybridizing before doing the program solo; however, I am experienced having done Insanity AND Max 30 before. Dys-Par’s reviews make it seem like Max 30 and Asylum match up pretty well.

            The other issue is I found a great Body Beast Max 30 Hybrid. I wanted to use that schedule but plug in Asylums for Max 30s. Team Ripped has a good schedule. (Wayne from PAP Upper created this!)

            Speed + Agility is like Max Cardio.
            Vertical Plyo is like Max Power.
            Strength is like Max Strength.
            Game Day + OT is like Friday Fights.

            The outlier is Back to Core. Doesn’t really match up to Max Sweat.

            I’m probably making too much of this. There’s very little variation between any of the Insanity discs.

  3. Brad

    February 17, 2014 at

    I’ve done just about every Beachbody workout there is and its my opinion that Asylum is the best. It just has everything in it. Its the only one geared towards athletes and not just overall fitness. I do feel its necessary to do P90X or Insanity at least once before starting Asylum so you get your fitness up. I started Asylum 2 after Body Beast and hated myself as I was too heavy from all the Beasting. Had to stop. First time I did Asylum I did it in my backyard which saved the knees. Gonna give Asylum 2 a go here now.

    Im one of those coaches in the MLM. Been doing it full time for 4 years now. I agree with you about putting it on AppleTV or something similar. Most coaches make their money selling the nutrition products (you can’t download a protein bar…well…at least not yet). I hope they offer a subscription based model soon for people to view all the workouts online, app, etc for $15 – $30 a month and with it maybe get a discount on the nutrition/gear. I’m sure it needs to be more thought out but I think people would entertain that idea over making fake copies, downloading, torrent, etc. If anything it would eliminate the entire black market on their products and get people going through Beachbody or coaches.

  4. Atomistorm

    December 29, 2013 at

    Mr. DP

    I was wondering if you could review Gymnastic Abs by Eddie Baran, I don’t know what to think of it and would be interesting to read your review.

  5. Matthew

    February 26, 2013 at

    Great, honest review. Looking forward to starting this next week after I finish da beast, my only issue is that body beast has meant my cardio fitness has hit the floor, may need plenty of the pause button.

    Oddly enough my mission is also to become batman :)

  6. Jack

    January 31, 2013 at

    I understand that you’re in training to be Batman. Would cycling rounds of P90x2 with Asylum 1+2 be adequate for this purpose? I’m training to be Bane myself – which alterations to the program would you recommend? Also, do you know anyone training to be Catwoman? Thanks.

    • Dysfunctional Parrot

      February 1, 2013 at

      Finally some intelligent questions!

      Cycling rounds of P90X2 and Asylum 1+2 would be great, but do not forget to put in Body Beast. The first three programs are great for core strength and endurance, but Body Beast will be required to sufficiently lift the caped crusader off his feet and break his back…allowing for a dramatic comeback. Therefore, I would do a one month cycle of each.

      Thinking of Catwoman candidates, I think of my wife. Or at least I better. She’ll kill me otherwise. Ha! Just kidding. ( No seriously, she’ll kill me…call the police… )

  7. Joshua Lawrence Austill

    November 25, 2012 at

    I plan on working the Asylum workouts into my P90X/Insanity Hybrid schedule once the Insanity workouts start to get boring. Your reviews of each workout will make it MUCH easier for me to know how to fit them in, thanks!

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