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Vegan Insanity…AKA cruelty free-tomfoolery


I started the Insanity exercise program on 1/7/2012 and would like to share my experience with other vegans, other Insanitians or just anyone who cares in general. Insanity in and of itself is pretty insane, but as a vegan…well all I can hope is a swift, painless death. While doing football sprints.




Day 50: Max Cardio Conditioning + Insane Abs

Meal 1: bbq chips (190/10g)
Meal 2: oatmeal w/ 1/2 banana, rice cake, 1/2 apple, 1/2 c canned tropical fruit (desperation) (430/6g)
Meal 3: cinnamon raisin bagel w/pb (360/13g)

Day 49: Max Plyo Circuits (3/6/2012)

It is a miracle that this workout even got done today. I only slept (really shittily) from like 9am-2pm because I had a dr. appt on base. Afterward I hung out at my friend Cynthia’s house because she lives on base and I needed to kill time before work. I was planning on resting my eyeballs for a bit but she encouraged me to do the stupid workout. So I did. I definitely slacked in the last interval or two but hey, atleast I made it through! Especially considering the girl keeps her home at 74 degrees!!!!!!! I’m really happy I did it though, tomorrow is gonna be more trouble than today since I get out of work at 7am, have a court date at 9 and then have to find time to sleep before work AGAIN. Bahh.

Meal 1: bbq soy chips, broccoli/cauliflower & red bean hummus (400/12g)
Meal 2: 1/2 apple, rice cake & 2 tbsp pb (265/9g)
Meal 3: oatmeal w/almond milk, 1/2 banana (240/4g)
Meal 4: 2 girl scout cookies, handful of almonds/walnuts/toffee peanuts (350/10g)
Meal 5: leftover lasagne, spinach salad w/strawberries, cranberries, walnuts, raspberry vinagrette coffee w/soy & sugar (780/10g)

totals: 2035 calories / 45g protein

Day 47-48: Fit test + Max Interval Circuits (3/5/2012)

Day 47 was a day of rest, but I’ve taken plenty of those in the past 2 weeks. So I went right into day 48 and did the fit test. I’ll post my results later when I am home; I’ll tell you right now though I think I am maxing out on my strength. I am entering the last 2 weeks of Insanity, and my fit test numbers have either increased very little or not at all since the last test. Granted I also did the test at 8am after working a 12-hour shift, but still.

So also in lieu of posting before/after pics this time (I’m lazy), I’m posting a picture I found from me on vacation about a year and a half ago (summer 2010), and a photo of myself in the same bikini just a few days ago:

Funny thing is, I remember thinking I was looking pretty good in that photo back then, which is kind of gross. I look so sloppy! Granted, my “transformation” (if you will) (and you WILL) is not 100% Insanity-induced as I have been working out regularly for years, but I think Insanity definitely gave me the extra push I needed to tone up. Either way, I’m much happier with the way I look today and don’t care how I got here!

Meal 1: nuGo protein bar, mini packet of runts (250/10g)
Meal 2: 1/2 apple, rice cake, 2 tbsp pb (285/5g)
Meal 3: cheerios/goLean crisp w/strawberries, almond milk (200/8g)
Meal 4: luna bar (180/9g)
Meal 5: tamarind BBQ tempeh & sweet potatoes w/polenta stuffing, coconut-butternut brown rice w/cashews (650/16g)
Meal 6: nuGo protein bar (200/10g)

totals: 1765 calories / 58g protein

Day 47: Max Interval Sports Training + Insane Abs (3/4/2012)

Meal 1: 1/2 luna bar (90/4g)
Meal 2: cinnamon raisin bagel w/vegan cream cheese, pb & 1/2 banana. coffee w/soy & sugar (485/15g)
Meal 3: 1/2 luna bar, taste tests of dinner (150/6g)
Meal 4: rice cake w/pb, raspberry jam, coffee w/soy & sugar (250/5g)
Meal 5: vegan lasagne (homemade!)- roasted cauliflower/tofu ricotta, eggplant, spinach, black olives. spinach salad w/cranberries, walnuts, raspberry vinagrette (500/10g)

totals: 1475 calories / 40g protein

Day 45 & 46: Max Recovery & Max Cardio Conditioning (3/2/2012)

Ugh, worked 36 hours in the last 3 days and it was busy as hell. I had NO time to work out at work, and was run ragged by the time I got home. And forget waking up “early” before work. So I ended up taking off 2 days in a row (wow, felt like a lot more than that). Anyways my meals for the last 2 days were actually pretty good, I made a few healthy meals and have been sticking to those while at work. 

Meal 1: bbq soy chips, clif bar (400/17g)
Meal 2: 1/2 pear w/almond butter (200/5g)
Meal 3: cheerios/goLean crisp w/almond milk & strawberries (170/9g)
Meal 4: nuGo protein bar, coffee w/soy & sugar (250/9g)
Meal 5: salad w/ avocado & ginger dressing. tempura pumpkin roll, piece of chocolate w/hazelnuts (650/6g)

calories: 1670 calories / 46g protein

Felt good to get back on track for sure. Definitely feeling/seeing some results since starting month 2.

Day 44: Max Interval Plyo (2/28/2012)

Did this workout at work, the first time doing that except the one time I did Max recovery here. Wasn’t as bad as I thought, I think what made it easier is that I have finally embraced the nightshift life (now that I have a week left, of course) and so my sleep schedule is supportive of things like Insanity at 2am. Encouraging, even.

Today it finally ocurred to me: month two is freaking hard. I take breaks more than ever and feel like I’m dying constantly. Sweat dripping all over my eyeballs and splashing all around me (special visual bonus for anyone I work with who will later be using the conference room I work out in). Great feeling after, terrible feeling during. Hopefully all this nastiness gives me the big month 2 results everyon raves about.

Meal 1: results/recovery formula, random samplings of food I was making (300/10g)
Meal 2: baby carrots, pretzel sticks & hummus (230/5g)
Meal 3: 1/2 apple w/ 1.5 tbsp sunflower butter, rice cake. glass of wine (350/6g)
Meal 4: cheerios/kashi goLean crisp w/almond milk, strawberries. coffee w/soy & sugar (260/8g)
Meal 5: curried chickpea & greens, sprouted brown rice. Luna bar (600/17g)

totals: 1740 calories / 46g protein

Day 43: Max Interval Circuits (2/27/2012)

Meal 1: reduced sodium popcorn w/nutritional yeast, coconut Lara Bar (570/16g)
Meal 2: out with friends (edamame, avocado salad w/ginger dressing, sweet potato roll, cucumber roll) (750/10g)
Meal 3: 2 peanut butter newman-o’s, cup of coffee w/soy & sugar (180/2g)

totals: 1500 calories / 28g protein

Day 42: Max Cardio Conditioning (2/26/2012)

Had my day of rest, then took another day off due to a pretty gnarly hangover. Awesome. Didn’t even do this workout until after midnight on Sunday, so it was technically on Monday 2/27. But I didn’t wanna write it as if I crammed 2 workouts in one day. I am not that motivated, quite the contrary actually!

Meal 1: walnut/almond mix. pb&j, 1/2 banana on a multigrain thin. BBQ soy chips (650/21g)
Meal 2: cheerios/kashi goLean crunch w/almond milk (170/7g)
Meal 3: 2 flax waffles, 1/2 banana, 1tbsp margarine, 2tbsp maple syrup. coffee w/soy & sugar (450/5g)
Meal 4: eggplant-lentil mole, sauteed cauliflower, 1/4 avocado. 3 whole carrots & pb (400/8g)
Meal 5: dark chocolate (200/3g)

totals: 1870 calories / 44g protein …bleh

Day 41: Max Interval Plyo (2/23/2012)

Not getting any easier yet! I was DUH-RIPPING sweat and my HR was over 170 pretty much the entire time. Doesn’t help that it’s like 70 degrees in NC right now and opening windows just isn’t cutting it. Today’s workout was immediately followed by a shower and a deep tissue massage at my fav massage place is Jville. My lady said my left hamstring was alot tighter than the right and that I might “favor” it. Guess that’s something to look out for during my workouts. She also commented how “nice and loose” my back/scapulas were and said I must do some pretty good stretching. Which I do, thanks to Shaun T!

Can’t believe I only have 3 weeks of this madness left. Been starting to think of what I’ll do after I complete the program – if I am satisfied with the shape I’m in, I might just stick with the workout but maybe only every other day, or 3-4x a week which was how often I used to go to the gym. We’ll see! Anyways tomorrow is a day of rest, which came as a surprise to me (mostly that I’ve done 5 days of this in a row already!)…a nice surprise. We’ll see if I have the energy, maybe I’ll save that rest for Saturday when I go back to work :)

Meal 1: few pieces of dark chocolate, intense licking of a cake batter spoon, 2 glasses sangria (540/3g)
Meal 2: 1 chocolate-beet cupcake, cheerios/goLean crisp mix w/almond milk & 1/2 banana (430/11g)
[post-workout: recovery formula (110 cal/7g)]
Meal 3: black cherry almond clif bar (240/10g)
Meal 4: slice of amy’s cheeseless pizza, tempeh/kale/lima bean stew, diet Dr. pepper (I know I know) (380/10g)
Meal 5: justin’s dark chocolate PB cups (200/4g)

totals: 1900 calories / 45g protein

Day 40: Max Interval Circuits  (2/22/2012)

Dead. The entire time. But it’s so addicting! Whyyyyy.

Meal 1: 1/2 apple, 2 tbsp sunflower butter, Luna bar (430/16g)
Meal 2: cheerios/kashi goLean crisp w/almond milk, walnut/almond mix (280/11g)
Meal 3: multigrain bagel w/peanut butter. coffee w/sugar & soymilk (380/13g)
Meal 4: primal seitan jerky, bean chips, handful of almonds (370/18g)
Meal 5: big ol’ salad (greens, baked tofu, brown rice/lentil mix, mushrooms, corn, light balsamic). slice of amy’s cheeseless pizza (540/19g)

totals: 2,000 calories / 77g protein

Day 39: Max Recovery (2/21/2012)

Well today was a nice surprise…Last month I had attempted this Recovery in place of the Month-1 “Cardio Recovery” just for fun and I had kind of a hard time with it. I even ended up skipping through a few of the moves because I just couldn’t do ’em. However, all through the workout today I kept anticipating and waiting for that “hard” part, but before I knew it it was time for the cool down! I kept up with mostly everything, I had to take a few breaks here and there but it wasn’t nearly bad enough to actually skip through! Pretty cool. I did have to skip the last 5 minutes (the cool down sretching) though, otherwise I woulda been late to work.

Meal 1: Clif builder bar (270/20g)
Meal 2: small apple, 1.5 tbsp sunflower butter, 4 graham crackers (300/8g)
Meal 3: oatmeal w/added protein powder (260/14g)
Meal 4: multigrain bagel w/vegan cream cheese, strawberry jam. coffee w/soy & sugar (300/7g)
Meal 5: AFR smoky tempeh & greens (kale, beet greens, lima beans) stew over brown rice/lentil mix. small piece of chocolate/walnut coffeecake (that I made!) (570/24g)

totals: 1700 calories / 73g protein

Seem to be doing pretty well keeping my calories at or just below 1700 lately. My scale is sticking at about 121.5 but that’s fine by me – that would be a typical “good” day for me before starting Insanity, but I’m ok with that…I definitely have lots more muscle and I’m just glad the scale isn’t creeping up along with it! Better than the 123-125 I was running during Month 1.

Day 38: Max Cardio Conditioning (2/20/2012)

Bad news: today totally murdered me. Good news: I have officially made it through all 5 of the month-2 videos (the 3 I did the last 3 days, plus Max Interval Sports Training all last week and Max Recovery when I tried it last month). So there is nothing to fear anymore – I remember looking at these videos last month being like “yeah ok, no way” but now here I am, hanging in and doing it! These workouts do get pretty intense, and Shaun T will say things like “I don’t care if you take 10 breaks as long as you keep your form” or “it’s okay to stop and rest – there’s plenty more exercise to come.” It’s less “go go go” than month 1, but the moves themselves are a bit more complex and use alot more muscles groups at once…but whatevs, tomorrow is Max Recovery day!

Meal 1: Luna bar, whole carrot, random samplings of cookery (300/11g)
Meal 2: small apple, 1 tbsp peanut butter (175/3g)
Meal 3: 1 tbsp peanut butter, 1/2 banana on a whole wheat thin. coffee w/soy & sugar (310/7g)
Meal 4: kashi goLean crisp/cheerios & almond milk (220/9g)
(post-workout: results & recovery formula (70/3g)
Meal 5: whole wheat pasta & veggies w/edamame pesto; spring mix salad w/walnuts, edamame, raspberry dressing (650/40g)

totals: 1725 calories / 73g protein

Wow really felt like I ate alot more than that… just a bunch of small meals I guess; I was awake all night til about 4am, then slept til 7am when I had to go to the cat farm. After that I slept from 1pm-4pm, and now here I am working til 7am. My results/recovery formula was less calories & protein today for that reason – I cut back on protein powder & OJ because I thought I was overeating as it was. Dang.

Day 37: Max Plyometric Circuits (2/19/2012)

Today was horrible! OK not horrible, but pretty shitty on the shit scale. I have the worst balance/lower ab strength ever and most moves were based in these areas. Hate feeling inadequate – however, even though I took shorts breaks every few minutes, my HR stayed at up at 170-180 so I guess I was still working! A couple things I enjoyed (and I am using “enjoyed” loosely here): a few of the exercises were less rep/cardio based and more focused on balance and maintaining form. It takes the competitive edge out of it, and allows me to really zone in on working my abs, as well as catch my breath. Also, there were only 2 difference exercise groups (3 sets of each), then one set of more advanced moves, then cool down. I also don’t mind the warm-up as much as I did in month 1 – I think I pretty much just hated the mummy kicks though.

Meal 1: handful of veggie chips, kettle corn, cherry almond clif bar (370/12g)
Meal 2: rice cake w/peanut butter & jelly (170/5g)
Meal 3: tempeh helper. soy yogurt w/kashi goLean crisp (310/9g)
Meal 4: kashi goLean crisp/cheerios & almond milk (220/9g)
(post-workout: results/recovery formula (110/7g)
Meal 5: leftover jerk tofu burrito, a few bean chips (540/20)
Meal 6: dark chocolate, glass of wine (270/2g)

totals: 1990 calories / 64g protein

Day nothin; I overslept. (2/18/2012)


Yes I overslept….. and as soon as I woke up I had a date with Sarah to take a day trip to Wilmington! Good news is I did have time to take new “after pics”… and that I didn’t eat like TOTAL shit (mostly thanks to both natural groceries with vegan bakeries being closed). Also got to pick up some more unsweetened soy protein, as well as re-stock on raw cashews and almonds. Yay.

Everytime I do before/after pics I’m a little more shocked…somedays I feel “fatter” than ever, especially since upping my calories so much (I used to aim for 1500 MAX, now it’s regularly 1700-2000). I also love, love, love the lack of love handles and the fact that my stomach is so much flatter. I have more of a flowy hourglass figure now, rather than a narrow waist that does nothing but exaggerate my “muffin top.” Another issue I took with my waist-love handle ratio was that it created these 2 little flabs on my back, right beneath where my bra/bikini would rest. It wasn’t anything terrible, just unneccessary and made me look more roly-poly than I really was. It’s hard to tell in these photos (I can only do so much with a macbook and kitchen table), but my legs are getting super defined, much more toned and firm than they’ve ever been. It’s wonderful to say that and know I did it without ANY stupid leg machines (they make me dry heave, literally..hate them). I also tried to fix my posture for these photos, as Brian told me “you’re always slouching! Even in your blog, always slouching. Stand up straight!” Aye aye sir.


Meal 1: 2 whole baby carrots, 1 tbsp peanut butter, soy chips (230/7g)
Meal 2: english muffin, 2 tbsp sunflower butter, coffee w/soy & sugar (380/11g)
Meal 3: 1/2 of a HUGE jerk tofu burrito (tofu, rice, black beans, pineapple salsa, daiya), whole buncha tortilla chips & different salsas. diet coke (mrahh) (850/22g)
Meal 4: 1 dark chocolate peanut butter cup, 1 glass of red wine (250/2g)
Meal 5: snacky snacky picky picky. few bites of “tempeh helper,” a few spoonfuls of coconut milk ice cream (200/6g)

totals: 1910 calories / 48g protein

Day 36: Fit test + Max Interval Circuit (2/17/2012)

Well wow…I am in for a real treat for the next 4 weeks. Recovery week is gone, begin month 2 workouts. I am excited for the next week atleast because the first time I do a new video is always fun, it’s just once I get to know what to expect from each that I’ll begin to dread them. MIC definitely kept my heart rate up there and my face beet red. It was set up similar to most month 1 workouts though: warm-up, stretch, 3 3-minute sets of an exercise group, 30 sec rest, 3 more sets of another group, rest, etc. and of course a cool-down. I definitely felt stronger, especially in my arms, quads and obliques. I could actually keep up for the most part, and even the Insanity people in the video were taking breaks left and right. I honestly thought a few of them were gonna puke too. I would love to attribute some of my awesomeness today to my new results & recovery formula recipe (see below), and this is my blog so I will.

Anyways some old exercises made an appearance along with a few new guys..however some of the older familiar ones were melded into one move. Example: full-body drills, where you get into a plank, do floor sprints, then go to moving push ups, get up, repeat to opposite direction. While this sounds awful its alot better than just doing moving pushups or floor sprints for a full minute, it switches it up a bit. Either way this was most definitely an intense workout and although I was a little nervous about the 63-min run time, it went by super fast (especially considering you can always shave like 5 min off that for advertisements at the beginning/end, and then another 10 or so for stretching).

Oh yeah, and my fit test!!! I did something different this time – I just went at each exercise as hard as I possibly could without looking at the numbers from previous tests. I felt like, last time I’d be like “oh I’m only 30 seconds in and I only need 4 more to beat my record? 15 second break!” ..but this time I had no idea so I just went at it full force til I maxed out, and the results showed!

Parantheses is my number on day 1 (5 weeks ago), other number is how many I did today:

  • Switch kicks (63) 72
  • Power Jacks (30) 45
  • Power Knees(55) 84
  • Power Jumps (22) 36
  • Globe Jumps (7) 10
  • Suicide Drills (14) 20
  • Push Up Jacks (13) 25
  • Low Plank Obliques (8) 28
NOT BAD eh? Atleast everything was an upward improvement, unlike the last fit test… I’m especially proud of the power jumps since those are my true nemesis, but now I’m all like “bring it on Shaun.” I will post Day 37 pics tomorrow, I like to do it before I eat anything for the day and forgot today!

Meal 1: PPK  banana-walnut-flax muffin, 1 tbsp chocolate hazelnut butter (240/3g)
Meal 2: soy chips, 3 whole carrots, “simply great” fruit/veggie bar (440/15g)
Meal 3: goLean crisp/cheerios w/almond milk (180/5g)
Meal 4: multigrain bagel w/2.5 tbsp cinnamon raisin pb, coffee w/sugar & soy (380/13g)
[during workout: my own results & recovery formula* (140/13g)]
Meal 5: eggplant-lentil mole w/a piece of scallion cornbread (400/17g)
Meal 6: small piece of dark chocolate w/hazelnut, soy chips (230/6g)

totals: 2010 calories / 62g protein

*invented recipe today: 1 packet emergen-C, 1/2 c Trop50 (stevia-sweetened) orange juice, 1/2 scoop each unflavored/vanilla soy protein, 12 oz water. Tasted like a creamsicle!! However afterward I read that a 4:1 carb-protein ratio & 0 fat is perfect for a recovery formula, so next time I will probably do 1/2 scoop vanilla protein only. So that’ll make it 110 cal, 32g carbs, .25g fat, 6.5g protein. Plus 425mg potassium, lots of B6 & B12 vitamins, 60mg sodium and tons of Vit C. Poifect.


I totally would have done atleast the cardio recovery workout today, but I am so sore! I blame it 75% on the run yesterday, 25% on 6 straight days of Core Cardio & Balance/Max Interval Sports Training. Like really, holy shin splints. More like shin bitch. And my quads and hamstrings, good Lord..I can barely walk straight. HOWEVER I am happy to announce that after almost a week of really watching/caring what I ate and doing the workouts as scheduled, the scale has finally budged! Was 121.5 this morning – a whole 1.5 lb less than I have been. Maybe this is my turning point… I really hope so..

Meal 1: nuGo dark chocolate bar (190/10g)
Meal 2: reduced fat popcorn w/nutritional yeast (380/18g)
Meal 3: rice cake w/sunflower butter & jelly (210/6g)
Meal 4: AFR “tempeh helper” & scallion cornbread, coffee w/sugar & soymilk  (520/14g)
Meal 5: PPK “Eggplant bacon,” avocado, lettuce, tomato on whole wheat roll. baby carrots, 1 tsp pb (440/4g)

totals: 1740 calories / 52g protein

Day 34: Core Cardio & Balance + 30 min run/jog/walk (2/15/2012)

Last recovery day! Went for a quick jog solely because it was 65 DEGREES ON FEBRUARY 15 and I couldn’t let that go to waste…plus I work tonight and tomorrow night so I won’t be seeing sunshine for a while. Still hate running as much as usual, my hip flexors, ankles and cardiovascular system are just not well-equipped for it. Was still nice to get some fresh air though, and I even got a few Shaun T-style sprints in on this nice straightaway down the road.

Meal 1: 2 whole carrots, glass of wine, samples while cooking (“tempeh helper” and Lentil Eggplant mole) (300/8g)*
Meal 2: rice cake w/pb&j (220/7g)
Meal 3: cheerios/kashi goLean w/ 1/2 banana & soymilk. coffee w/soymilk & sugar (300/11g)
Meal 4: handful of almonds, whole carrot dipped in pb & a mini lunabar (300/11g)
Meal 5: shake- unflavored and vanilla soy protein, 1/2 c almond milk, 1 tsp agave, strawberries (160/13g)
Meal 6: eggplant-lentil mole w/a piece of scallion cornbread (all homemade) (400/17g)

totals: 1680 calories / 67g protein

*Please don’t judge me!! I count “meal 1” as anything after midnight. So this wine/cooking actually occurred at 1am, don’t forget my crazy sleep schedule thanks to working nightshifts..bleh.

Day 33: Max Interval Sports Training + 6 minute abs (from Hip-hop Abs) (2/14/2012)

Yes, today I did the MIST and then tried out the “Last minute/6 minute abs” video from Hip Hop abs. It was pretty intense (and hilarious, so 90s! And Shaun T was RAPPING). I acquired the entire Hip Hop abs series, so I might throw in an extra work out every so often. I would also like to make time to run on the treadmill at the gym to see if my endurance has improved at all, if for no other reason.

Day 33 and today marks 33 days of still hating my gut while everything else is pretty OK.

Meal 1: kettlecorn, strawberry/grapefruit salad, handful of almonds (350/6g)
Meal 2: kashi goLean crisp, 1/2 banana & soymilk (230/11g)
Meal 3: luna bar, coffee w/sugar & soymilk (230/9g)
Meal 4: beet burger topped w/avocado slice. butternut squash mixed w/brown rice, cashews & 1tsp coconut oil (550/25g)
Meal 5:  out for sushi with friends- a few steamed edamame, tofu/veggie soup, salad w/avocado & ginger dressing, sweet potato tempura roll (600/15g)

totals: 2010 calories / 66g protein

Tried so hard not to get that god damn tempura roll but it’s just so good!!!

Day 32: Core Cardio & Balance (2/13/2012)

Meal 1: 4 whole carrots, 2 tbsp peanut butter (240/7g)
Meal 2: 3 oatmeal pancakes w/ 1 tbsp margarine, 1 tbsp maple syrup. coffee w/sugar & soy (600/30g)
Meal 3: 2 whole carrots, 1/2 tbsp peanut butter. beet burger w/baked tofu, avocado, spring greens. 1/4 baked butternut squash. glass of wine. (740/27g)
Meal 4: piece of dark chocolate w/hazelnuts (120/1g)

totals: 1700 calories / 65g

As you can see (if you clicked the link), I invented that oatmeal pancake recipe myself today! About 10g protein, 15g carbs & 150 calories each – better stats than my fav protein bar! Still not doing that great at keeping my meals at a set calorie amount, but atleast I’m not overeating I guess. Today I went back to the Core Cardio & Balance, mostly because I was SO SORE from yesterday! What a great feeling though – haven’t been sore since week one. Today also marks the very first time I kept up with/completed the entire set of Level 1 drills (from standing, go down, do 4 push ups, hop back in, stand up, repeat)…I used to have to take atleast one break that was one set long.

I am still frustrated at my lower ab situation (as I sit here sipping a glass of wine). No matter how hard I try, I just can’t seem to “engage” that area of my abdominal muscles during the workouts. My obliques and upper abs, all day..but lower. Never. Maybe they just aren’t strong enough yet, I find that I have alot of trouble with moves that involve my lower body/legs in which Shaun T says to “use your core.” I’m sorry Shaun, but I can’t kick my legs straight out 8 times in 5 seconds just using my core. Or going from a face-down V-position to kicking my legs straight back, simultaneously? Like, really who can even do that? I can do it only if I can kick one leg up slightly ahead of the other. So it’s probably a combo of me being weak and also this stubborn layer of fat over my belly. But hey, it won’t get any better I quit on it now so I might as well continue doin what I’m doin, right?

Alot of forums offer up people who insist they saw the most results in Month 2. As much as I can hate on Insanity or be frustrated, I’d hate to give up now, before I’ve really gotten the chance to get results.

Day 31: Max Interval Sports Training (2/12/2012)

following directions fail.


So I am sort of obsessed with this workout. It is the “deluxe” alternative to the Core Cardio & Balance, but since Insane Abs is about 50x harder than the Cardio Abs I was wary of “deluxe” Insanity anything. I decided to give it a whirl today though since I had a little extra time. It goes through all different sports workouts (boxing, football, basketball, gymnastics, track & field) and you only do each exercise once, for a minute. Except there is a 2-minute suicide drill thrown in there (ugh) and a couple that go by reps rather than time. It was almost an hour long but went by pretty quick since it was ever-changing and there were enough breaks. Just like with Insane Abs though, there were some moves that I just straight up could NOT do, whether it was due to my lack of balance or strength. I did what I could though, and my heart rate stayed at a good 165-180 the entire time. I might alternate this workout with Core Cardio & Balance for the next 4 days of the recovery week. Plus the acronym for this workout is MIST and that’s just refreshing.

Meal 1: apple w/ 1.5 tbsp sunflower butter, almonds (500/23g)
Meal 2: oatmeal w/ 1/2 scoop unsweetened soy protein, soymilk (230/12g)
Meal 3: cheerios + goLean crisp, soymilk. coffee w/sugar & soymilk (360/13g)
Meal 4: beet/lentil burger on a whole wheat/multigrain thin w/avocado, spring mix. half of an ENTIRE baked butternut squash. (600/29g)
Meal 5: small piece of dark chocolate with hazelnuts (120/1)
totals: 1810 calories / 78g protein

I was happy to do the math and see that The PPK “1/4 lb. beet burger” has similar nutrition stats as Morningstar farms (non-vegan) 1.4 lb. veggie burger, calorie & protein wise. And it has alot less ingredients, including milk and cheese (WHY DO VEGETARIAN COMPANIES DO THAT?!). And yes I somehow fit an half of an entire butternut squash into my belly. Skin and all 😡

Day 30: C0re Cardio & Balance (2/11/12)

Moving right along in my recovery week. I actually look forward to and enjoy this workout, too bad in 5 more days it will be back to hellishness… only like a million times worse. But this is definitely one video (along with Cardio Abs and Cardio Recovery) that I’ll use regularly even once I’m finished with Insanity.

I am still working out with a mirror ghetto-rigged on top of my stove, and it’s quite motivating. I am not as flabby, uncoordinated and/or pale as I imagined myself. I am actually quite attractive in fact. And to see how beet red and sweaty I get is another self-turn-on. Still, I continue to hate my lower stomach. My upper abs are great, covered with a little layer of fat but great nonetheless. My obliques are to die for. But my lower abs, somehow they actually look worse. Especially if I’m leaning over. I don’t know if I’ve actually put on weight or just built up abs underneath existing fat, or if perhaps the tightening of all the other ab muscles has somehow pinched my remaining flab into some sort of wedge which defies all physics…but I totally hate it.

So I made the conscious effort today to eat better, at the suggestion of my friend Ryan who commented on here – “more whole foods, less processed crap.” I’m hoping I can atleast lose this last bit of fat, if not target “belly fat” itself with certain foods (if that’s even possible). Reading up on the “flat belly diet” (so stupid), they reccomend eating more “MUFAs,” or mono-unsaturated fatty acids with each meal..which consist of pretty much things I already swear by: avocado, nuts/nut butters, olive oil, dark chocolate, olives. They also suggest eating 4 meals a day/1 meal every 4 hours, 400 calories each. 1600 calories a day is probably not enough on Insanity, so I’ll stick to my 5 meals a day but maybe focus more on keeping the calorie count that 400 per meal, instead of 200 here and 800 there.

I also read up on their “sassy water” (still stupid), which is lemon, cucumber, mint & ginger-infused water. The lemon is probably for flavor (although some argue that it is a diuretic), the cucumber and ginger are soothing to the digestive tract, and mint is a digestive stimulant. So I suppose it could possibly decrease bloating. I made a batch for work, I didn’t let it soak overnight or anything and I had no I guess it’s really just garbage water. Whatevs.

Meal 1: 1/2 c oats w/strawberries, 2 tbsp walnuts, 1 tbsp maple syrup, soymilk (320/8g)
Meal 2: 3 whole carrots w/ 2tbsp peanut butter. 1/2 pear (315/7g)
Meal 3: luna bar & coffee w/sugar & soymilk (230/9g)
Meal 4: salad: spring mix, 1/2 pear, strawberries, 2 tbsp walnuts, sprouts,  alot of tofu. balsamic dressing. (380/12g)
Meal 5: small multigrain bagel w/ a slice of tofu, 1/4 avocado (200/8g)

totals: 1445 calories / 44g protein

Just from eating this way today, I have found that it’s going to take some research to find foods which are “whole” while getting enough calories and protein, yet not too many carbs. Blah.

Day 29: FINALLY! C0re Cardio & Balance (2/10/12)

So my plan to start the Recovery Week on 2.8 totally failed when I got a stomach virus and spent an entire day throwing up with a stomach virus, and the next day recuperating. But today I was determined to get back on track!! I LOVED Core Cardio & Balance!! It was like “gentle” cardio; I was still sweating like crazy and somehow my heartrate was still up near 180 (my standard max) but the moves were slow, controlled, very focused on maintaining form rather than repetition or speed. My dream workout basically.

My food for the past 2 days was disgustingly unhealthy but easy to remember: 2/8: 1 bottle of powerade, 1/2 sleeve of saltines. 2/9: 1 bottle of vitamin water, pbj on multigrain bread, vegan chicken patty w/vegenaise on a whole wheat roll, LARGE Wendy’s french fries (what? they settle my stomach).

Meal 1: home made!!! everything bagel w/vegan cream cheese. coffee w/sugar & soymilk (350/7g)
Meal 2: cheerios/Kashi goLean mix w/soymilk (200/10g)
Meal 3: out for thai with a friend! house salad w/peanut dressing. soup (tofu & veggies in coconut milk). fried tofu w/stir fried veggies & a pepper sauce over white rice. glass of moscato wine. (900/27g)
Meal 4: small piece of hazelnut chocolate. (120/1g)

totals: 1570 calories / 45g protein

Day 27: Plyometric cardio circuits (2/3/2012) + an extra Pure cardio/cardio abs (2/7/2012)

It was easy to crank this one out thanks to the knowledge that I would be in recovery mode for the next week! And that Brian is coming :)

I am writing this entry in retrospect and can’t remember my meals exactly.. but  from dinner on this day (Friday) until pretty much dinner Monday night my food was pretty crappy. Brian was here, so that meant pancakes and going out for dinner & drinks. I also didn’t do any workouts – thus the 3-day hiatus. Today (Tuesday) I got myself back on track by doing pure cardio and crdio abs, even though I left off at Core cardio & Balance. I felt like eating shit for 3 days and not working out would not be reversed by a week of “balance,” so today was the jumpstart. Tomorrow will be the official day 29, where I will enter into the recovery week between Month 1 and Month 2.

Anyways today I set up a big mirror in the kitchen to workout in front of. The cons were that I had to watch my stomach jiggle around, but the pro was that that was the only part of my body that jiggled. And it was really my lower/middle abs, whereas the upper are actually coming along quiet well. This was a part of the reason I decided to do the cardio ab workout too. My arms, shoulders, legs, and back were completely to my liking. And it definitely helped me to keep my form in check, mostly with the stretching.

Meal 1: protein cookie, coffee w/soymilk & sugar (200/9g)
Meal 2: Luna bar, bbq soy chips & a handful of peanuts (400/21g)
Meal 3: 2 veggie dogs on a roll, 1/4 c baked beans (320/23g)
Meal 4: leftover hibachi veggies, 2 pieces fried tofu, white rice (400/9g)
Meal 5: 1/2 bag reduced fat popcorn (160/2g)

totals: 1480 calories /  64g

Day 28: rest, a day early (2/2/2012)

I was 124 god damn pounds today. I’m sure it’s PMS and the fact that I downed an entire bag of salt popcorn at 3am at work, but still. I need to keep reminding myself that I don’t necessarily need to LOSE, but to just “tone up. ” Ugh. I sound like such a meathead. Anyways I did my before/after pics a few days early because Brian is coming tomorrow night and we are going out for Mexican and well, yeah… I mean do you wanna take a pic of your belly after refried beans and margaritas? Or see mine? Didn’t think so.


The Day 15 pictures almost look better than Day 26, but I think I had lighting and a weird camera angle to my advantage. Anyways where I notice the biggest differences is in my arms, my waist and upper abs. It’s hard to see in these pics too but my legs are getting a little more defined too – definitely calves and probably quads. Also my bellybutton is starting to look more like a bellybutton and less like an abyss through which you may teleport into colonial times.

Meal 1: reduced fat popcorn w/nutritional yeast, handful of raw almonds (580/24g)
Meal 2: Blueberry bliss Luna bar, more almonds (280/15g)
Meal 3: goLean crisp/cheerios mix, 1/2 banana & soymilk. coffee w/sugar & soymilk (270/19g)
Meal 4: 6 boca chicken nuggets, tator tots. ketchup & sweet n sour sauce. arnold palmer (640/30g)

totals: 1770 calories / 88g protein

Day 26: Pure Cardio & Cardio Abs (2/1/2012)

Yes, I opted for Cardio Abs instead of Insane Abs today. True it’s 10 minutes shorter but that isn’t why I did it, I feel like I get a better workout with CA because it’s alot less “advanced” and so I can keep up and keep my form. After a 2-day neck ache following the last time I did IA, I was sure I didn’t yet have the strength to work my abs. The big difference between the two workouts, besides length, is that in CA you are keeping either one or both feet on the floor for most moves, where as in IA both your legs are typically off the ground. The plank positions are alot more do-able too, none of these one-armed/legged balancing acts.

Feel good today. I sweated and went nuts and I was still shaking at the post office 2 hours later. ALSO can’t believe I’m halfway through the program! Gotta be honest, I wouldn’t have ever pegged myself to be one of “those” people, but one month in I’m still in it…and all caught up and everything, no skipped workouts or “weeks off.” Amazing. This blog has about 80% to do with that too, it holds me accountable. Just hope I can physically keep up with the second month, looks intense…it literally looks like it’s edited to be fast-forwarded a little bit, like the moves almost look unaturally fast. Yikes.

Meal 1: protein cookie (140/9g)
Meal 2: 2 more protein cookies (280/18g)
Meal 3: tempeh & tomato, veganaise on multigrain flax bread. 1/2 c baked beans. 2 newman o’s (600/27g)
Meal 4: multigrain bagel w/2 tbsp Better n’ Peanut butter.  shake – strawberries, 1/2 c soymilk, 1 scoop vanilla soy protein (200/28g)
Meal 5: 1/2 Amy’s veggie cheeseless pizza, avocado chocolate pudding & 2 graham crackers, arnold palmer (720/13g)

totals: 1940 calories / 95g protein … this might be my highest protein count yet!!! And not even on purpose.. snacking on those protein cookies sure does help out!! I will have to tinker with the recipe to make them less calories without compromising too much protein…hmmm…

Day 24 & 25: Plyometric Cardio Circuit & Cardio Recovery (1/31/2012)

And I quote Jack’s Mannequin when I say “it’s biblical how fucked my sleep can be.” I was up til almost 4am, then slept until after noon. I got up and had to do a quick half shot of 5 hour energy (ugh) then I was ready to go. The “raw” protein cookies I whipped up at 2am also probably helped (see below). I showered, did a few things around the house then did cardio recovery. Not a bad day all in all, Insanity wise . Plyometrics was still hard but I “powered through,” again barely having to rest during the arm-up and just a few times during the workout. I tried as hard as I could to keep up with the awful plank stuff at the end and I didn’t do half bad. The recover certainly felt nice though…tomorrow is Pure Cardio/Insane Abs, then Plyometrics again, which is scary to think of BUT after that it’s all downhill for a week – a day of rest then a week of Core cardio and balance, plus Brian is visiting Fri-Mon!!!! Definitely going to make him try some of the workouts, if for no other reason than punishment for not reading my blog religiously.

Was looking for a cookie recipe that used protein powder and stumbled on one from this blog. The recipe calls for oats, protein powder, and nut butter. Then you add in whatever you want (I added dried cherries, crushed almonds, cinnamon and a dash of salt). Then you mash it into a small bowl and refrigerate over night to make a big, semi-solid breakfast “cookie.” I quadrupled the recipe then pressed it into a muffin pan, to make 10 mini cookies at about 140 cal/9g protein each! Perfect for pre-workout – filling, low fat, good carbs, moderate protein.

Meal 1: minibag of kettle corn, fitnessista protein cookie (210/11g)
Meal 2: 2 more protein cookies (pre-workout) (280/18g)
Meal 3: 2 “smart dogs” on a roll w/ketchup, mustard. 1/2 cup baked beans. coffee w/soymilk, sugar & 1/2 scoop protein powder (510/35g)
Meal 4: veggie sticks (140/1g)
Meal 5: dinner @ a friend’s – 1/4 amy’s cheeseless pizza, vegan mac & cheese w/ broccoli, baked butternut squash, brussel sprouts w/margarine. Avocado chocolate pudding for dessert. 2 glasses of grape wine. (1040/22g)

totals: 2180 calories / 87g protein

Day nothing: lazy fatness (1/30/2012)

Meal 1: most of a bag of Natural popcorn (350/4g)
Meal 2: Chocolate chunk Luna bar (180/9g)
Meal 3: goLean crisp/cheerios mix w/nonfat vanilla soy & strawberries (215/10g)
Meal 4: pb & jelly on multigrain thin (280/10g)
Meal 5: 4 newman-o’s, almond/walnut mix (3609g)
Meal 6: tempeh & tomato, veganaise on multigrain flax bread, reduced fat kettle chips. goMaxGo Twilight bar. (790/21g)

totals: 2,175 calories / 63g protein

Crap. Crap food day. I got home from work at 8am, slept til 2pm, then fell back asleep at 6 and woke up at like 10. Working 3 nights in a row really killed me, I was so sleepy alllll day and ended up not doing the workout. I mean I was really only awake for 4 hours and spent that time running necessary errands. Plus I’m all PMS-y and weird. I can squeeze it in early tomorrow though, then do the cardio recovery in the evening. Meh. It’s 11:30pm and I’m contemplating just doing it now since I’m wide awake, but I I know I’ll be more into it tomorrow morning. Not to mention it’s hard to “engage your core” when its filled with candy bars and cookies :(

Day 23: Cardio Power & Resistance (1/29/2012)

Felt pretty good all day yesterday after getting BOTH those workouts in…great motivation to keep going today! Safe to say my second wind is here! By my calculations, I should start to lose interest in about a week or so- but then it’s time to take the third round of pictures, so that should be enough (hopefully) to carry me and my suffering motivation into month two.

Noticed today that my neck sore from yesterday, but my abs aren’t. Which tells me that I need to focus more on using my core instead of straining my neck/shoulders during ab workouts! Other than that, as usual I loved Cardio Power & Resistance. I kept up for the most part and barely took breaks. I am definitely improving when it comes to any kind of jumps which is great because I hate them…and power jumps were what I actually did WORSE on for my second fit test! Besides physical conditioning, I have also graduated to cutting/using dedicated “sweat rags” rather than dish towels to mop up sweat and tears, spit into, blow my nose etc. (all of which unfortunately occur during my workouts).

Lastly, I find myself laughing at some of the shit Shaun T says, especially after seeing ALL these videos a million times. So I googled and found this blog post of Insanity quotes and loved that I’m not the only one. Unless you do Insanity you probably won’t laugh at these at all.

Meal 1: Blueberry bliss Luna bar (180/9g)
Meal 2: lime popcorn minibag + nutritional yeast. 3 fig newton crisps. (330/10g)
Meal 3: cheerios/goLean crisp mix, 1/2 banana & nonfat vanilla soymilk. almond/walnut mix. (370/15g)
Meal 4: 1/2 pure blueberry bar, 1/2 cherry almond bar (pre-workout), pb & jelly on a multigrain thin, standard coffee protein shake (590/35g)
Meal 5: black eyed peas & collard greens, roasted sweet potatoes w/a little brown sugar & ketchup (450/10g)

totals: 1920 calories / 82g protein

Day (21 &) 22: Pure Cardio & Insane Abs (1/28/2012)

Day 21 is technically a day of rest, but I already indulged in that a few days ago. I woke up this morning (3pm) and resolved to stop hating Insanity, atleast for today. I got myself all pumped up like the old days, actually looking forward to the workout. I looked forward to pushing and impressing myself. It definitely made a difference. I didn’t cry today. I barely took breaks during the warm up, and tried really hard to not take big long breaks during the workout itself. I didn’t skimp on the stretching and focused on my breathing. I even went right into the second workout (insane abs), and although I was tempted to skip the warm-up since my heart was already pumping, I did it anyway. I also tried and did my best during the ab workout, but I really don’t have the best “core” strength still, especially when it comes to plank positions. There’s one where you’re in a low plank position (on your forearms), then lift the right arm and leg, then left arm and leg. Did about 2 reps and collapsed…I also have pretty pathetic balance. I’m looking forward to my “recovery week,” the first week of February, where it’s only core/balance everyday.. Looking forward to the change and improvement!

Oh and I was 121.8 today :) Need to keep an eye on those cals…I’ve been tipping at >2,000 on somedays. I don’t care how hard I’m working out, it’s not enough to eat almost 1,000 more calories a day!!!

Meal 1: fig newton flax/blueberry crisps, 2 graham crackers, lime & salt popcorn minibag (240/3g)
Meal 2: goLean crisp/cheerios mix w/soymilk & strawberries (225/10g)
Meal 3: peanut butter & 1/2 banana on multigrain thin (360/12g)
Meal 4: shake- 1 scoop unflavored + 1/2 scoop vanilla soy protein, 1/2 c nonfat vanilla soymilk, instant coffee, water/ice (160/22g)
Meal 5: tofu, bokchoy, mushroom stir fry. sweet potato roll & “eel” sauce, cucumber avocado roll. arnold palmer. (700/20g)

totals: 1785 calories / 67g protein

Day 20: Plyometric Cardio Circuits (1/27/2012)

So proud of myself, actually got up at 7am (before my 9am court date) and did my workout! And that was after a terrible night’s sleep too. I feel like I’m at a plateau almost, like I just can’t get any stronger or faster at this point. I get winded just as easily as day one pretty much. I’d like to run on the treadmill soon though, just to see if I’ve increased my cardio capacity anymore. It’ll also be interesting to see the results in my PFA come May.

Meal 1: “that’s it” apple & cherry bar, shake – 1 scoop unflavored + 1/2 scoop vanilla soy protein, 1/2 c nonfat vanilla soymilk, instant coffee (260/22g)
Meal 2: almond/walnut mix (100/3g)
Meal 3: tofu, bok choy, mushroom stir fry over brown rice. 1/2 pure wild blueberry bar (500/18g)
Meal 4: leftover taco dip over 1/2 baked potato. most of an apple (700/15g)
Meal 5: nuGo mint chocolate bar (190/10g)

totals: 1750 calories / 68g protein

Day 19: Cardio Power & Resistance (1/26/2012)

Probs my favorite workout of them all. I can reasonably keep up and it’s fun. I am getting alot better at the power jumps and definitely with push ups, such a great feeling to feel yourself getting stronger! Bought myself some pumped up kicks yesterday to keep myself motivated – same Nikes I’ve been using (Lunarfly 2) only white/pink instead of black (see pic. please also note the tye-dye socks, 10 pairs of which I purchased while also wearing a ty-dye tshirt.) They have lots of support and are grippy enough so I don’t slide around when I’m doing push ups or hopping around. Also love that they are leather free! My Reebok Realflex’s were like wearing plastic spatulas tied to my feet, efficient for other reasons (armless pancake making?) but definitely not Insanity.

Oh and yesterday the scale finally budged for the first time all month – 122.5 lbs. Just a pound but still… it was nice. I am still a day behind – I don’t foresee wanting to do Plymoteric Cardio Circuits later today to catch up…instead I’ll probably do that tomorrow before work, since tomorrow is supposed to be a day of rest but I already took that 3 days ago. I’m gonna be honest, I’m not as in love as Insanity as I was a week ago. Complacency is setting in. Honeymoon’s over, Shaun T. Time to put my serious face on.

Meal 1: multigrain bagel w/ vegan chive cream cheese. coffee w/soymilk & sugar  (270/7g)
Meal 2: shake – 1 scoop unsweetened + 1/2 scoop vanilla soy protein, handful baby spinach, handful strawberries, frozen blueberry/raspberries, 1/2 banana, 1/2 c fat free vanilla soymilk. Bag of falafel chips. (455/25g).
Meal 3: tofu, bok choy, mushroom stir fry over brown rice. glass of sangria (600/15g)
Meal 4: piece of dark chocolate w/nuts, random hard candies, 4 cinnamon twists (420/3g)

totals: 1745 calories / 58g protein


Day 17 & 18 : Pure Cardio, Insane Abs (1/24/2012), Max Recovery (1/25/2012)

Today was a killer. I did Pure Cardio then Insane Abs (just realized I actually have the “deluxe” Insanity set, so I have access to Insane Abs rather than Cardio Abs w00t). It’s nearly twice as long and a lot harder, like a few exercises I couldn’t get past 1 or 2 reps. And for some reason, Pure Cardio kicked. My. Ass. Today. I think it was mostly frustration – I have weighed the exact same since Day One and I also feel that I look the same, clothes fit the same, yet I’m killing myself daily. I honestly got so frustrated that I cried. During the workout. Paused it, sobbed over the sink, resumed. I am not kidding, Insanity is making me legitimately Insane guys. I was almost ready to throw in the towel today.

In order to catch up my days I also did Cardio Recovery, which I replaced with Max Recovery (from month two) just for fun, at 3am at work. Also sucked and I could barely keep up, and it wasn’t even cardio. I have no balance, no grace, a pot belly that will never die and a scale that doesn’t know any numbers beyond 123.

On the flip side, I have researched Insanity weight gain/no loss pretty extensively. It seems that lots of people have this issue, and it goes beyond the whole stupid “muscle weighs more than fat” theory (like, really, shutup). When youbegin a newer, intense workout your body responds by retaining water in its muscles in order to lessen the blow and help recover. Most people said that somewhere between weeks 2-4 they started to lose some weight finally…I am at week 2 1/2 so we’ll see. I am no quitter, as much as I

might hate this I definitely don’t want to go back to the gym! I love working out at home because it really only takes as long as the video is – no driving, changing, avoiding Marines, etc. It’s get up, get changed, do it, shower. Really helps to cut back on slacking or excuses!

Meal 1: Shake – 1 scoop each unsweetened/vanilla soy protein, 1/2c plain soy, instant coffee, water/ice (230/26g)
Meal 2: goLean crisp/cheerio mix w/plain soymilk. onion & garlic soy chips, almond/walnut mix (440/16g)
Meal 3: flax waffle w/almond butter, 1/2 banana. Coffee w/soymilk & sugar (350/6g)
Meal 4: soy chips (220/10g)
Meal 5: leftover Mexican layer dip in a soft tortilla. 5 tortilla chips. Baby carrots (680/15g)

Totals: 1900 calories/73g protein

Meal 1: Shake – 1 scoop each unsweetened/vanilla soy protein, 1/2c plain soy, instant coffee, water/ice (230/26g)
Meal 2: almond/toffee peanut mix, fruit roll up (390/7g)
Meal 3: date/walnut/raisin oatmeal w/soymilk, peanut butter, banana. coffee w/soymilk & sugar (470/12g)
Meal 4: chocolate chunk luna bar, almond/walnut mix (280/12g)
Meal 5: black eyed peas, collard greens, 1/2 baked potato, cherry pie luna bar (650/10g)

totals: 2020 calories / 67g

Day nothing: stomachache-induced day of rest. 1/23/2012

Weekend is gone, back to being a night owl. Am going to try really hard to get Pure Cardio & Insane Abs in during my break at work, and then relax with the Cardio Recovery tomorrow.

Meal 1: shake – 1 scoop each unflavored & vanilla soy protein, 1/2  plain soymilk, sugar, instant coffee, water/ice. walnut/almond mix  (350/29g)
Meal 2: peanut butter & banana on whole wheat thin (360/11g)
Meal 3:  handful of almonds (100/3g)
Meal 4: 7 boca chick’n nuggets, tater tots, ketchup & sweet n sour sauce (600/28g)
Meal 5: 4 saltines, nuGo Mocha dark chocolate bar (230/11g

totals: 1640 calories / 82g

Day 16: Plyometric Cardio Circuits (1/22/2012) 

Yep, still hate this workout more than anything. The problem is in the second set of exercises: 3 out of the 4 exercises are plank-based and I just don’t have the arm strength. I felt extra sweaty and tired really early in the workout. My heartrate was 180 at one point then hovered around 165-170 for most of it, but I still felt like I was slacking. I think I just get so frustrated because I feel slow and incompetent that I can’t bang out 4 or 8 push-ups as fast as the video does, so I end up only doing half the reps I’m supposed to and lying on my kitchen floor yelling at myself for the remainder of the set.
ALSO my food for the day was pretty terrible because I was just hanging at my cousin’s watching football & drinking.
Meal 1: english muffin w/margarine & cinnamon raisin peanut butter, coffee w/soymilk & sugar (325/7g)
Meal 2: blueberry bliss luna bar (180/9g)
Meal 3-5: randomness all day- homemade hummus w/ baby carrots, mushrooms, pita bread. nacho dip (refried beans, cashew-based cheese sauce, tofutti sour cream, salsa, TVP taco filling) & tortilla chips. soCo lime & diet coke x2 (1500/53g)
totals: 1960 calories / 69g protein
Long story short, I felt lazy and fat today. The scale keeps reading like 124 every morning, which is a pound more than I started at…I just keep hoping “it’s muscle” and not me just gaining big fat sloppy vegan weight. And my boyfriend still doesn’t read this blog or care at all about what I am working so hard at everyday of my life. Yeah that’s right, I just demoted my fiancee to boyfriend-status. And I accidentally bought plastic instead of cardboard tampons and had to return them to the most awkward Walgreens manager ever. And the stray cat I feed refuses to sleep in his cat house I worked so hard making. Sad angry day.

Day 15: Fit test!!!! (1/21/2012) 

Parantheses is my starting number 2 weeks ago, other number is how many I did today:

  • Switch kicks (63) 63
  • Squat Jacks (30) 43
  • Power Knees(55) 73
  • Power Jumps (22) 18
  • Globe Jumps (7) 9
  • Suicide Jumps (14) 14
  • Push Up Jacks (13) 22
  • Low Plank Obliques (8) 26


So as you can see, in most categories I improved, 2 stayed the same (switch kicks, suicide jumps), and one I actually did less of (power jumps). Here is my interpretation of that: the first time doing this fit test I paused it alot and couldn’t believe how hard it was. This time I didn’t pause at all, the one minute breaks were long enough for me and I just “powered through.” Second, the first time around I was probably not doing exercises with the right form (such as switch kicks and power jumps). But all in all I’m proud of myself, I mean just look at my before/after photos, and it’s only been 11 days since it was taken (day 3 pics are at the bottom of the page).
Physically, I see the biggest differences is in my belly – I have the beginnings of ab muscles (omg), and from the side I think I look more toned/smaller from my shoulder to right below my sports bra, including my upper arms. And definitely my little beer belly – it’s almost gone!! All-around I am less doughy I guess. My cardio and speed have improved, but I still struggle with resistance things like jumping and kicks. So today I learned what areas I need to focus on and stop taking breaks at, like conveniently getting dehydrated every time kicks appear in the workout. Can’t wait for the next test!
Meal 1: cheerios & Kashi goLean crisp w/plain soymilk (320/16g)
Meal 2: shake – 1 scoop each unsweetened & vanilla protein, 1/2 c plain soymilk, instant coffee, water/ice (220/26g)
Meal 3: random sampling. cocoa covered almonds, lentil soup, carob spirulina cube (100/5g)
Meal 4: pizza – tofu ricotta, vegan cheese, tofurkey italian sausage, basil walnut pesto mushrooms. 2 glasses of sangria (960/39g)
Meal 5: dessert – chocolate pudding pie (450/3g)
totals: 2050 calories / 89g protein
Made vegan dinner with a co-worker for her 3 sons & husband, she wanted to try something new. We had alot of fun and it was great! Total guesses on the calories/protein for that, but it’s fine. The pie was especially delicious…special sneak-preview recipe from Vegan Pie in the Sky cookbook :)

Day 14: Pure Cardio & Cardio Abs (1/20/2012)

Went to bed at 8am after work, got up a little before 1. Did my workout in the afternoon after I woke up a little and my “breakfast” (the waffles)had a chance to settle. You know what’s actually really helpful with this blog? Is when I’m unsure if I loved or hated the video of the day, I just look back. MOST of the time (read: anyday except plyometric cardio circuits day) I’ve written that I loved it and/or feel great afterward. Helps to keep me excited.

The Pure Cardio was great, I tried really hard not to break as much as I usually do and I did pretty well. Definitely getting stronger/more resilient. First time doing cardio abs. I basically finished the pure cardio work out, then skipped the cool down stretch and went right into cardio abs.. then during that cooldown, I made sure to do the stretches I had skipped. Anyways I HATE power-jumping and it starts with 2 jumping warm-ups, but after that it’s c-sit, floor positions. You feel the burn for sure, but it’s a good burn. I even caught a glimpse of my reflection (in my oven door, which I often use to check my form as well as bake brownies) and was pret-ty impressed. Lookin good, Baldino! Tomorrow is the fit test, which nearly killed me 2 weeks ago, on day one….it’ll be interesting to see the results! Genuinely excited for that.

Meal 1: 100-calorie bag of popcorn + 1 tbsp nutritional yeast, 1/2 nuGO organic dark chocolate bar (240/9g)
Meal 2:  Luna bar, almond/walnut mix (280/12g)
Meal 3: 2 flax waffles 1.5 tbsp cinnamon raisin pb (320/9g)
Meal 4: shake –  1 scoop each vanilla & plain soy protein, 1/2 c light chocolate soy milk, water & ice. handful of almonds (385/32g)
Meal 5: veggie burger & veganaise on a roll, tortilla chips & salsa, veggie chips, piece of dark chocolate w/ nuts, 2 glasses of sangria (950/31g)

totals: 2175 calories / 93g

Being social lead to a little over-eating for Meal 5, but I’m ok with that since I’ve been slacking in calories the past few days. Plus who can be mad about 93g of protein!!! Also forgot to mention I found an unsweetened version of the GNC soy protein shake I’ve been using – and it’s half the calories, no carbs, same protein! So 60 calories/13g per scoop, instead of 120cal/13g. By itself it’s repulsive, but mixed with the sometimes too-sweet vanilla it’s perfect.

Day 13: Rest (1/19/2012)

Planned on doing the workout at work but I put it off, and then got busy, and by time I had downtime I was sleepy as heck. Tomorrow is a day of rest, so I just took that today and I’ll do the pure cardio/cardio abs tomorrow. My other concern with working nights is I’m not eating nearly enough…I’m recording my meals for the day from midnight-midnight rather than from when I wake up til when I go to bed, it’s easier to keep track that way. So really I had meals 1 & 2 at work between midnight and 7am, then 3 & 4 were after I woke up around 4pm and went back in to work.

Meal 1: shake – 1.5 scoops protein, 1/2 c fat free vanilla soymilk, instant coffee. Almond/toffee peanut mix (325/27g)
Meal 2: kettle corn (150/0g)
Meal 3: 2 tbsp peanut butter, jelly on a whole wheat thin, coffee w/soymilk & sugar (390/11g)
Meal 4: leftover chinese tofu & broccoli (350/9g)
Meal 5: berry coffee cake I made for work (300/4)

totals: 1515 calories / 51g protein ……..really? Less than 1600 calories for 2 days in a row? I probably couldn’t even do this if I was trying to eat less calories. Ugh. But I guess it’s actually better because I didn’t do a workout today…

Day 12: Cardio Power & Resistance (1/18/2012)

So not only are the workouts and food important, but also timing. I need to find the best time to do them now that I’m on nights! I worked

tonight, but I did this one in the morning before my “nap.” Also, I just realized I haven’t posted a pic in a few posts, and I don’t feel like taking one so please enjoy this hilarious meme of the pretentious vegan puppy to your right.


Meal 1: Kashi goLean crisp, bran flakes, soymilk, coffee w/sugar & soymilk (370/12g)
Meal 2: shake – 2 scoops protein, 2/3 c light chocolate soymilk, water
Meal 3: 1.5 tbsp peanut butter, banana on a whole wheat thin (310/9g)
Meal 4: chinese food takeout – tofu, broccoli, brown sauce (700/18g)

totals: 1560 calories / 67g protein

Day 11: Cardio Recovery (1/17/2012)

Cardio recovery, I love you. You’re just tough enough that you get my blood pumping (110-125) and make me feel like I’m getting stronger/more toned, but just when I feel like I’m pushing myself to my max, you bless me with a break in downward dog or child’s pose. Holding squats and lunges is still a battle for me, and I need to take two second breaks but I’m definitely getting there. I did my workout in between work and dinner (at Chuck E Cheese for a friend’s son’s birthday) – I set up my laptop in the gym at my hospital and went to town. But I did have the urge to look around the whole time and yell “it’s usually alot more intense! don’t judge me!”

I start nightshift tomorrow, so it’ll be interesting to see how I’ll fit my workouts in…possibly on my “lunch” break at like 3am? We’ll see. I just realy, really, really hope I don’t fall off the wagon – I could NEVER see myself on a boring elliptical at the gym or breaking my knees on a treadmill ever again. Honestly, at the gym today I felt bad for all the people with their headphones, books, magazines just moving and going nowhere on their silly, lowly cardio machines. I love that Insanity is constantly changing so you can never really do something long enough to get lazy at it…so your HR is always up! The 40-50 minute workouts really fly by, you have your warm up which sucks, then stretching which is awesome, then heart-pumping torture (but by this time you’re already halfway through the video, so you might as well stick it out), and then more amazing stretching to cool down. Just talking about it makes me wanna go workout!

Meal 1: shake – 2 scoops vanilla soy protein, 1/3 c light chocolate milk, instant coffee, ice/water (270/27g)
Meal 2: pb & j, 1/2 banana on multigrain bread (470/15g)
Meal 3: almond/toffee peanut mix, 1/ nuGo organic dark chocolate pretzel bar (350/10g)
Meal 4: huge salad of romaine/spinach/veggies, olives, beets, spiral pasta, kidney beans, italian dressing (650/10g)
Meal 5: scoop of soy chocolate cherry ice cream in a sugar cone , 100-calorie bag of lime&salt popcorn w/2 tbsp nutritional yeast (380/15g)

totals: 2120 calories / 73g protein

Food was meh. I volunteered to be a HMSB instructor (teaching new corpsmen) and couldn’t really take a break for snacks and whatnot…and Chuck E Cheese didn’t have any tofu, sadly. Silly rat.

Day 10: Pylometric Cardio Circuits (1/16/2012)

This is the one workout I will begin to dread. It sucks and I hate it, and I can barely keep up. Third time I’ve done it and I feel like a loser every time! Alot of push up/plank-based moves near the end and they just kill me! Kept my HR around 160 the whole time though, and tried to keep my collapses to a minimum.

Meal 1: shake – soy vanilla protein, 1/2 c vanilla soymilk, starbucks instant coffee, water (230/23g)
Meal 2: almond/walnut mix, Luna bar (280/12g)
Meal 3: tempeh bacon, sauteed tofu, vegan cheese & margarine on an ezekiel muffin (350/17g)
Meal 4: apple chips & a few grapes (pre-workout), protein shake – 2 scoops of soy protein powder +  1/2 c light chocolate soymilk (410/28g)
Meal 5: homemade 5bean chili over brown rice/quinoa mix, tortilla chips & vegan sour cream (620/14g)

totals: 1890 calories / 94g protein

 I could be the next annoying Tanya.


Well it looks like 2 protein shakes today really paid off! I tried to drink that second one immediately after my workout to help with the “recovery.” And then I felt like I was literally forcing dinner down my throat, but I know not giving my body the calories it needs can make it hold onto fat stores. Also getting better at doing the carb thing before the workout…I really love fruit, but I hate wasting the calories and time when what I really need is more protein, so pre-workout snack time is a great excuse for a fruit orgy. Or just a handful of grapes because they’re about to go bad.

OH AND WOULD YOU LOOK AT THAT PROTEIN COUNT?! I’m only like 20g away from the 110g I should be getting..but I’m sure anything over like 30g/day is a huge improvement from my norm!

Day 9: Pure Cardio (1/15/2012)

I definitely dreaded this more than I should have today! Last time was so awful because there was just NO end in sight, whereas this time I knew what to expect (no water breaks) and pushed through. I only stopped for a few seconds at a time instead of giving myself really frequent breaks just because I was panicking, and when it was almost time for the cooldown I couldn’t believe it. I actually enjoy this workout because it’s not possible to just breeze through, and you never repeat a move. Each exercise is done for a full minute. I’ve decided I do hate moves which require me to be coordinated, like globe jumps or 1-2-3 heisman’s. Too much for little brain too handle. I do much better with repetitive moves, like power jacks, ski-downs, etc.

Also noticed today that there are benefits to Insanity besides a hot body (gasp!). For one – the stretching! I’m alot more flexible than I was before, for example I never knew what a deep lunge even WAS before Shaun T swept me off my feet. My balance is a little better too. I’m also more willing to push myself rather than take a break whenever I see fit. Yesterday made me nervous when I wasn’t totally dead after the workout, but today I redeemed myself for sure. I was lying on my kitchen floor, tearlessly sobbing when it was through.

Meal 1: shake – soy vanilla protein, 1/2 c vanilla soymilk, starbucks instant coffee, water & ice (230/23g)
Meal 2: Amy’s Indian Vegetable Korma, sauteed tofu, 2 coffee/chocolate chip/nut muffins (800/17g)
Meal 3: Bora Bora Brazil Nut/Almond Bar (200/5g)
Meal 4: walnut/almond mix, apple, 1 carrot dipped in peanut butter (230/5g)
Meal 5: black bean burger, veganaise on a whole wheat thin. small piece of dark chocolate w/nuts


totals: 1810 calories / 61g protein

Stupid muffins killed me calorie-wise! It was SO crazy at work, I had my shake on the way in as usual, but then didn’t get to sit down to eat until 1. At which time I stuffed my face with the muffins I’d made & brought in. And lame 61 g of protein. Better day tomorrow, hopefully! Also.. I was 125.0 lb on my bathroom scale this morning, which I have not been more than like 123.0 lb on in MONTHS…and that was on a bad day. Please lord let it be muscle!!

Day 8: Cardio Power & Resistance (1/14/2012)

Same ol sweaty story! Sooo tired/hungry last night after work, but I took the advice of someone who replied to a post of mine in a vegan LJ community – I ate an apple before my workout. This worked out really well because I’m always STARVING after work, but if I eat dinner I feel really miserable a few minutes into jumping around and sweating. I also had some almonds and walnuts to help tide me over.

I haven’t decided yet if I prefer doing videos I have never done before or repeats…in a way it’s nice to try something new, but on the other hand it’s also good to know what to expect (AKA how long is left til the torture is complete) and compare your resilience to the last time you did a certain workout. Today I felt good afterward, but I was not as sweaty and dead at the end. I’m definitely getting stronger, whether that be willpower or muscle-wise I don’t know, but it’s good. I still want to be exhausted after a workout though, so now I know I can push a little bit harder next time.

Meal 1: shake – soy vanilla protein, 1/2 c vanilla soymilk, starbucks instant coffee, water & ice (230/23g)
Meal 2: 1/2 Ezekiel english muffin w/ 1.5 tbsp cinnamon raisin peanut butter (200/10g)
Meal 3: salad – baby spinach, romaine, cucumber, raw tofu, ginger dressing. 1 piece of fried tofu, 1 piece of inari (leftovers). mixed berry soy yogurt w/ 1/4 c kashi goLean crisp (495/20g)
Meal 4: apple, walnut/almond mix (280/12g)
Meal 5: tempeh BLT – 5 tempeh strips, lettuce, veganaise on multigrain bread. 1 carrot dipped in peanut butter. small piece of dark chocolate w/nuts.  (560/20g)

totals: 1765 calories / 85 g protein

WOW 85! The higest yet! And all it took was 3 different forms of tofu for lunch! :)

Day 7: Rest (1/13/12)

Honestly tempted to even do just Cardio Recovery or SOMETHING ANYTHING, but I will refrain…my body will thank me tomorrow when I’m hopping around during Cardio Power & Resistance 😐

Meal 1: shake – soy vanilla protein, 1/2 c vanilla soymilk, starbucks instant coffee, water & ice (230/23g)
Meal 2: 1/2 Ezekiel english muffin w/ 1.5 tbsp cinnamon raisin peanut butter (200/10g)
Meal 3: 6 vegetable sushi rolls, a few pieces of tofu, apple (320/9g)
Meal 4: Smores Luna Bar. 1/3 cup Kashi GoLean Crisp & almonds (300/13g)
Meal 5: homemade 5bean chili, 1/2 baked potato, vegan cheese/sour cream, flax cornbread (600/15g)

totals: 1650/70g

Seriously, I don’t even TRY and I get 70g protein?? The past few days I’ve been killing myself to even hit that number and I barely make it. Anyways, that shake for breakfast has officially replaced my morning coffee, and I love it! I reduced the soymilk by 1/2 cup, and replaced that 50 calories/3g protein with an extra scoop of protein (+ water) at 60 calories/6.5 grams of protein. Bonus.
Day 6: Pylometric Cardio Circuits (1/12/12)

First time doing a video I have done before. Didn’t make it any easier. Literally sweating from every pore…disgusting, but words can’t express the sense of accomplishment I feel afterward. Or maybe they can: I feel pretty fucking good. Bought myself a heart monitor ($25 at Wal-mart – see photo of my E.T. arm to the left), not really because I’m concerned about my efforts (I’m pretty sure my crying during the workouts is evidence enough that I’m pushing myself), but because I want to be able to look down at my wrist after Shaun T tells us to “check your heart rates people!” …just like everyone else in the video does. I usually stand there and pretend to feel my pulse (as if he can see me). Anyways I was a steady 160-180 the whole time, not bad considering my “target heart rate” is 137-176 for cardio training.

Also at Wal-mart, I bought headbands, a vacuum, and eco-friendly razors, all of which I plan on monitoring my heart-rate while using.

Meal 1: 1.5 tbsp cinnamon peanut butter on a whole wheat thin (220/9g)
Meal 2: 1/3 c GoLean Crisp cereal w/ chocolate soymilk (100/5g)
Meal 3: leftover tofu stir-fry over brown rice/quinoa mix, raw carrot (350/14g)
Meal 4: shake – soy protein, vanilla soymilk,  1/2 banana, 1 packet starbucks via instant coffee, 4 ice cubes (280/20g)
Meal 5: out for sushi with a friend. 1 piece of inari (sweet sticky rice wrapped in tofu), seaweed salad, 4 pieces of fried tofu w/teriyaki sauce,  2 onigiri (rice & miso), 2 glasses of wine (770/17g)

totals: 1720 calories / 65g protein

Need to beef up that protein, story of my life. Also, the day I started Insanity I had a Dr. appt and weighed in at 127.2 lbs on their scale; today (2 days later) I had another appt in the same office, and I weighed in at 124.5 ! Yes that could just be a big poop, but it could also be me turning super hot. Either way, tomorrow is a day of REST…. but dare I say I may actually miss it??????

Day 5: Pure Cardio (1/11/12)

Okay so I am officially addicted to Insanity. I just worked a 12 hour shift (7a-7p), came home, ate dinner, and told myself I would just double up on workouts tomorrow. Mind you, I NEVER work out after work, and very rarely will I sneak a workout in during work. Workdays are just that – WORK. But after dinner I sat down to just “check out” what workouts were to come, and I got so hyped up just fast forwarding through that, before I knew it, I was running up the stairs to change into workout gear.

Regretted this decision about halfway through the video. There was virtually NO 30 second breaks once the actual workout began, even people in the video were dropping like flies to catch their breath. It was freaking intense. Even Shaun T says, and I quote, “this shit is bananas yo.” I was dripping sweat and beet red, something I haven’t experienced since training honestly. I realized today that I never, ever push myself at the gym. I was disgusted at the thought that I sometimes didn’t even break a sweat enough to have to shower after the gym (seriously).

I tried to tweak my eating habits today to accomodate the increased protein and 5 small meals, as the nutrition plan reccomends:

Meal 1: shake – vanilla soy protein, mixed berries, vanilla soymilk, handful baby spinach (270/20g)
Meal 2: flaxseed waffle w/cinnamon raisin peanut butter (250/7g)
Meal 3: tempeh strips on whole grain bread, vegan mayo, grapes, handful of pretzel crisps (470 /18g)
Meal4: nuGo organic dark chocolate pretzel protein bar (200/10g)
Meal5: stir-fry of tofu, mushrooms, onions, baby bok choy over brown rice. homemade hummus & a carrot. dark chocolate with nuts. (600cal/18g)
totals: 1,790 calories / 72g

I felt like I ate sooo much protein today but seeing those numbers is kind of shocking/disappointing! Oh well…the goal of stuffing my face with more delicious foods is a tolerable one to me.


Day 3 & 4: Cardio Power & Resistance AND Cardio Recovery (1/10/12)

Yesterday I was so sore I was virtually immobile. And I had the hintings of a cold happening, so I skipped the day. Today however, thanks to lots of zinc & Bendadryl I’m back on track and even caught myself up by doing TWO sessions. Power Cardio & Resistance was hell on earth, but the Cardio Recovery was amazing and rejuvenating. PCR felt relentless with the jumping exercises but I did enjoy it. Shaun T makes a good point when he reminds you it’s “max interval training!!!” and that if you don’t take breaks as needed, you never reach your potential max in each interval. I’m tinkering with a personal rule that I never rest for more than 2-3 reps, and that if there is less than 5 reps left in the set I’ll just tough it out. It’s also really important to keep your form, otherwise you’re just flailing about, or what I like to call “dancing at the club.”

Cardio Recovery was slow-moving and involved a yoga mat and serene music, but don’t get me wrong – it’s still really intense. While you might not get your heart pumping cardio-wise, you’ll definitely get it through maintaining tough position for 30 seconds at a time. I was shaking and sweating and there wasn’t even any flailing. Amazing feeling though, to know that you are stressing your body so hard without even having to jump around. Feel the burn! One of the tougher moves included slow squats, followed by holding the squat position for 30 sec, followed by 16 small pumps. Child’s pose and downward dog are your BFFs in this video.

I feel stronger already. Even just 4 days in I feel like my upper abs are the tiniest bit more defined, and my biceps feel more toned. I finally found a decent soy protein shake mix, believe it or not GNC had their own brand for just $12. It’s got 120 cal, 13g protein per scoop and is tolerable.

My meals for today, followed by estimated calorie/protein content:
Breakfast: Kashi GoLean Crisp + bran flakes & soymilk (275, 14g)
Snack: 1/3rd Luna bar, serving of raw almonds (250, 12g)
Lunch: pasta w/tofu, tomatoes, broccoli, 2 vegan meatballs & “cheese” (450, 22g)
snack: vanilla protein powder + light chocolate soymilk + starbucks via instant coffee packet (210, 14g)
Dinner: 2tbsp all natural pb, jelly, 1/2 banana on a whole wheat sandwich thin (400, 12g)

totals: 1575 cal, 74g protein

So according to the formula (weight in kg – %body fat)  x 2.75g, a 5’6″, 125lb (56.8kg) woman with 26% body fat shuld be getting 116g of protein/day in order to build muscle…about 2/3 of the way there today! Speaking of body fat, through researching how much protein I need I found out that I am on the lower end of acceptable (25-31%), with 21-24% being “fit.” So that’s a new goal! Get that number down by 2 or 3 percent.

Also worked up the courage to post some “before” pics. Apologies for my pale lankiness…if you have any of those roll-out sunglasses you get after the eye doctor dilates your eyes, you might wanna run and grab those now.

(day 3)                                                                                                    


Day 2: Pylometric Cardio Circuits (1/8/12)


Disgusting pit of sweatiness and tears. It took me an alarmingly short amount of time to revert back to the gross habits I developed during ODS (Navy officer) training, such as one signature move I call the Water Puke – filling my mouth with water but being so nauseated/crazed with exhaustion that I simply open my mouth and let it waterfall onto the ground rather than swallow it. Ahh, refreshing. Also, being so energy-depleted that I don’t even care that my standard Navy-issue, elastic waist, swishy PRT shorts have ridden their way up to meet the bottom of my sports bra. Power through, sailor. No time to adjust. These are the ways I know Insanity is truly working for me.


So Day 2 started with the standard “Warm-up,” but then “we” did 2 more sets of said warm-ups, faster each time and with 30 second breaks in between. This helps to get used to the exercises and improve form each time around. Once again during today’s workout I considered ditching the whole effort, but pushed on. What I like about the workouts, besides the fact that Shaun T looks like a beefy hot Will Smith, is


1. that there is a color-coded “ticker” type bar at the bottom of the screen that shows you how long you have left in the current exercise, and what is still to come. For example, yellow interval denotes the exercise you are currently doing, solid blue line means another exercise to come, a faded grey means 30-second water break, and half-blue means stretching. So by watching that ticker you can keep telling yourself “okay 2 more exercises to go” or “10 seconds til a water break” or “HELLO? 911? OH WAIT- OMFG STRETCHING! FINALLY. NEVERMIND. BYE.”


2. The stretching is amazing and, atleast for today, you are given a nice 5 minute break right in the middle of the video. You feel it still actually working the muscles but you have a chance to catch your breath. It’s like an intense yoga. And Shaun T is super cute saying yoga-y things like “neutral spine” and “child’s pose.”


3. I like that the general format is to do one set of a few different exercises, rest for 30, do another set but faster, rest for 30, do another set even faster, rest. That happened 3 times in this video, each with a different group of exercises…


4. The groups included “purposeful” or familiar movements, like “throwing the basketball,”  “mountain climbers” or football warm-ups. You don’t just feel like you are flailing about like a dead fish knocking shit and magnets off your fridge with your gangly arms and legs. You also spend a decent time both on the floor and standing.


One thing I need to get down is a “recovery formula.” I quickly threw together a shake today that was a banana, soymilk, flax seed meal, instant coffee, agave, vanilla & cinnamon. And I ate a few spoons of almond butter for added protein. Altogether that probably provided close to 20g of protein after my work out, but I’m sure I need to up that for survival. Everyday I’ll try to include my meals/protein intake for the day and whatnot as well.

Breakfast: see above
Lunch: homemade hummus, raw peppers. few spoonfuls of 3-bean salad. veggie chips.
Dinner: out for fondue with a friend. bread, spinach salad w/cranberries, walnuts, apples, raspberry vinaigrette. fresh veggies, potatoes, tofu – some of it tempura fried (peanut oil was my fondue, I know I am gross). “skinny” margarita (tequila, lime juice, agave).

Day 1: The fit test (1/7/12)

Beginning weight: 123.0 lbs.

A series of 8 cardio moves that you do as many reps of as you can within 1 minute, you repeat this test every 2 weeks throughout the program to check in on progress. The idea is not for the moves to get easier, but for you to complete more within a minute than you did on the original or previous fit test. It was only 25 minutes and was pretty freaking intense, and yes I considered pretending I never even heard of Insanity and just going on my merry flabby way. BUT I started being vegan by telling myself “it sucks, but I promised myself I’d try.” The most important promise you can keep is one to yourself, because it’s the only on that really doesn’t have repercussions but needs to be held for the sake of faith in oneself. End philosophy. Begin muscles.

I was not sure on the names of the actual exercises til I looked them up, and looking back on my tracking sheet I had to laugh at my versions of the their titles…”Shitty weird push ups,” “Poop jump,” etc. Numbers next to each is how many I did on Day One:

  • Switch Kicks (63)– standing up straight and alternately kicking each leg out in front as high as you can.
  • Squat Jacks (30)– jumping jacks, only in Squat Jacks you go down into a full squat at the end of every repetition.
  • Power Knees(55)– standing up straight with your hands interlaced overhead, and then bringing 1 knee up at an angle across your body as many times as you can.
  • Power Jumps (22)– down into a full squat and then leaping up into the air as far as you can.
  • Globe Jumps (7)– one hop back, one hop to the right, one hop forward, and one hop to the left equals 1 repetition.
  • Suicide Jumps (14) – from a standing position down into a plank position, then back to standing and then leap straight into the air.
  • Push Up Jacks (13) – regular push ups, only you spread your feet wide apart and then bring them back together on every single repetition
  • Low Plank Obliques (8) – from a plank position, keep your upper body totally still while alternatively bringing each knee up as close to your shoulders as possible


  1. Ryan says:

    eat more whole foods. too much processed crap!

  2. Ryan says:

    I don’t think it’s necessary, as a vegan, to consume the processed protein stuff, like veggie meats, protein bars/cookies, shakes, etc., to ensure adequate protein intake. Now if it’s for taste, that’s a different story. Just eat tons of legumes, nuts, and seeds. And I don’t think there’s anything particularly wrong with tofu and tempeh. I eat quite a bit of it. There’s a chart in the book, “Becoming Vegan,” that lists all the best sources of protein from plants. Oh, yeah, quinoa is another great source of protein, especially since it’s a complete protein (like soy). Nutritional yeast is also a complete protein! I know you like that in your tofu scramble. So get scrambling. Although time-consuming, juicing wheatgrass is another option.

    As an example, this is what I’ve eaten thus far today:

    Breakfast: 1/2cup rolled oats, 1/2 banana, 1tbsp ground flax seed, 1tbsp ground almonds, 1tbsp raisins, 1tbsp of peanut butter, and 1/2cup of almond milk (measurements are estimates)

    Lunch: Smoothie (tons of Kale (dino), 1 banana, 1 orange, 1 pear, 2 small apples, 1 carrot, 3 strawberries (the last three in the fridge) and 1/2cup almond milk. Handful of almonds and something chocolate-covered.

    Dinner: TBD

    I can understand the frustration with belly fat (not insinuating here that you’ve got belly fat, just discussing). I hate to break it to you (and most every other human being), but you’re not going to get abs unless you’re doing sustained aerobic exercise. So lace up your running shoes or dust off your cross-country skis, and go. If you can run, Danielle, do that. Even just 30mins/day would do the trick on your diet. There’s just something about running and melting away any extra fat/trouble spots. Take it from experience. When I’m running 10hrs/week, I’m pretty lean (no fat to grab), but when I’m just hiking or biking even (like I’m doing now), there’s certainly some fat to grab onto. It’s a simple equation. Calories out must exceed calories in and you can ensure that by running. There’s no question about it. I’m not talking about all out running, either. I’m talking about easy 10-11min miles. You can still do your other strength training and core routine, obviously. Just some food for thought.

  3. Danielle says:

    thank you for your awesome input, ryan!!! you’re a good vegan role model for someone who is straying off the “old school” path into more new-agey foods…. very quickly, being vegan is becoming synonymous with an endless search for vegan substitutes of junky foods. i admit I’ve fallen victim to that, but I’m trying to back to my “roots,” no pun intended :)

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