The vast majority of humankind is getting more overweight, and more sedentary, and with inflation at an all-time high, most people don’t have the cash to spend on a gym membership.
That said, there are plenty of us who would still like to train and make the most of our own bodies, even if it is from home. As a solution, Shaun over at Beachbody made his own version of Shark Week called Shaun Week … I’m intrigued.
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About the Creator – Shaun T
From the moment you first “meet” Shaun, you already know so much about his energy and mannerisms, that you want to join his workouts already. Big, bold, friendly, and yet firm enough that you’ll listen to his instructions.
Shaun T is a world-famous trainer and coach, but his career begins at much humbler roots. It all started in 1997 when he started giving exercise classes that combined hip hop and aerobics. These classes are fairly common today, but someone had to start them.
Shaun had a very hard upbringing and deserved to be treated a whole lot better than he was. In high school, he found safety in track events and developed into a rising star. Fast forward to university, and Shaun, unfortunately, fell victim to the infamous weight gain when you start university.
After some time Shaun grew tired of this and wanted to make a change, and so he did. He hit the gym hard, and after shedding a few pounds, he even changed his major.
Sports Science and Health Promotion was the goal now, and this is where he actually started giving classes.
Shaun T is now famous for these very classes and has developed charisma and a brand for this type of training that just draws people in. He is so good, in fact, that he has various programs available on Beachbody like:
- Insanity: The Asylum
- Focus T25
He even started his own company at www.shauntlife.com.
Today he is still giving classes and helping people dance their way to a better self. He also does live events, and his fundamental goal is still to help as many people as possible because he’s been there.
That is a beautiful story, but we have to now see if the workouts are also as good.
Beachbody’s Shaun Week Workouts Overview
Compared to other programs you might find online, Beachbody’s Shaun Week Workouts are all high-intensity, aerobic types of workouts that do not rely heavily on resistance training. This does mean that the amount of muscle you can gain is less, but this makes it ideal for beginners or those who are focused on fitness.
- Fitness level: Intermediate
- Duration: 1 Week +
- Workouts per week: 7 Workouts per week
- Average workout duration: 27 – 43 minutes
- Equipment needed: Minimal equipment
- Goal: Lose weight and get fit
Compared to other programs that you may have seen online, this one does not contain any schedule, nutrition guide, or supplementation guide. There are such options available elsewhere on the site, but it is a bit disappointing not to see them come with the program.
The workouts are definitely all purely focused on fat loss and cardiovascular training. Both these are exceptional in their own right. Fat loss has been linked to decreased mortality, while cardiovascular training has numerous benefits such as a decreased risk of cardiovascular disease.
Before you start any Shaun T program, you should know what you are getting yourself into.
A lot of the movements are high-impact and high-intensity. This means that those who are suffering from joint or ligament issues might struggle. Even those who are severely overweight might need to take things slow initially.
Each workout does, however, come with a video in which Shaun takes you through the entire workout step by step. This makes the whole process and vibe a lot better than other programs because he’s there yelling at you to keep moving!
Again, while this plan is limited in its ability to grow new contractile tissue, it could be effective at helping you lose fat and get fitter.
Beachbody’s Shaun Week Workouts Details
There are 7 workouts in total, and while it is hinted that you could do one every day, I would highly advise against this to allow for some recovery.
Work up some sweat with Cardio!
The idea that we have to do cardio in order to lose weight is not really founded in reality. This, unfortunately, started via misinformation, and with the rise of social media, has only increased in reach.
It’s quite a contract to V Shred telling you that you shouldn’t do cardio if you want to lose weight.
Cardio is simply a tool we use to create a greater calorie deficit, which is still the only way we can actually lose body fat. You need to be in a net calorie deficit so that the “missing” energy can come from somewhere else – from fat in this case.
Cardio can help create a bigger deficit, seeing as you will be burning calories while simply doing “nothing”. Not only that, but as mentioned before, cardio training does have remarkable health benefits.
This is why it is important to do cardio training, and this is why Shaun T has stuck to this style of training to design his workouts.
- It requires very little equipment (if any)
- Can be done in 30 minutes
- The training is going to be pretty high-intensity
This means you will be jumping, running in place, and doing other aerobic types of movements to get the most out of your body. Rest time will be minimal, so it is advised that you have a water bottle close by.
The only glaring problem with this type of plan is the lack of progression. See, when the body is faced with an external stimulus, it adapts. Resistance through weights? Cool, let’s grow some muscle. Oh, more weight? Guess we’ll grow more.
With these dance-like training styles, the body does not have to adapt as much seeing as the workout remains the same week to week. Yes, in the beginning, you will see fat loss, fitness increase, and potentially more muscle.
After a brief adjustment period, however, the body will be accustomed to this training and will refuse change unless you throw something harder at it.
On the fourth day, you have to squat 900lbs, easy stuff. Kidding.
But obviously, we would love to see some form of resistance training in a plan because it’s just that good for you. In fact, having more muscle can help with:
- Increased bone density
- Decreased risk of diabetes
- Decreased risk of injury
- Being jacked
That last point is obviously the most important one. Resistance training is one of the most important things you can do for your body, and luckily, Shaun does provide some in this plan. It’s not really conventional, however. You will be doing things like:
- Hammer curl into sideways lunge
- Dumbbell Burpees
- Dumbbell curls with alternating knee raise
- Dumbbell rows superset with tricep extensions
As you can see, this is definitely not muscle-focused, but rather whole-body training. On the other days such as the “Ripsanity” and “Dig Deep” days, you will be doing mostly bodyweight resistance training – which can be beneficial.
“Ripsanity” sounds like a weird cross between V Shred and Insanity, doesn’t it? But I digress…
Overall, this is not conventional weight training, and is more “cardio-with-some-weights-sprinkled-in”. This does, of course, make the plan a whole lot more accessible to the general public, and means you have a better recovery from cardio training.
That said, it suffers from the same mistake as the cardio training – no progression. There is no mention of going heavier, and since the training is time-driven and not sets and reps driven, there is no actual way to track progression.
Could you gain muscle with this type of training? Absolutely … if you haven’t trained, ever.
Unfortunately, once the body is consistently exposed to a certain resistance, two dumbbells and some high-knees aren’t going to do much, unfortunately.
One more drawback of resistance training here is that they combine it with cardio. If you’re limited by oxygen capacity, then you will not be training your muscles effectively. This means you could just be wasting your time, that said, Shaun does do one thing that made me smile.
A lady on the videos needed to do a “lighter” version of the movements, and for her (and the camera I presume) he was quick to find an alternative that was also easier to do. This makes the plan a lot more malleable to the public, meaning more people can benefit from this training.
3 Beachbody’s Shaun Week Workouts Pros
- It’s engaging: Because of the way the programs over at Beachbody are created, you get an actual video of every workout, and Shaun does them with you every step of the way. It’s not just simply a piece of paper with numbers on it
- Cardio and weight combo: As with most HIIT, there is a nice synergy between cardio – and resistance training, meaning you get the best of both worlds
- Various workouts to choose from: You have the freedom to choose any workout you want because there are no instructions on scheduling them so, have at it
2 Beachbody’s Shaun Week Workouts Cons
- Zero other guidance: Yes, there are nutritional guides elsewhere on the site, and yes they do sell supplements. I am just the type of person who would’ve wanted a nutritional plan for that workout plan. Other sites like bodybuilding.com do this very well, so why can’t Beachbody?
- It’s just a few workouts: This is the main problem. Yes, these are great workouts, but that’s where it ends. This is not a plan, this is not a program. This is a collection of workouts that you can choose from to do, and if you are shopping for a whole plan, this is going to disappoint you. Especially since every single week will have the same workouts over and over again
Beachbody’s Shaun Week Workouts – Final Thoughts
Shaun Week is a good idea in principle. You can provide people with some high-intensity activities that they can do from the comfort of their own homes, and they can have a lot of fun doing it.
They get to lose fat and be exposed to some form of fitness, all while also getting fitter in the process. If you are looking for at-home workout ideas, and your goal is fat loss, this is a really great place to start looking.
Where it does fall down is when you plan to actually follow this plan week on week. There is nothing wrong with training for the sake of just being, but most people want to improve week by week. If you look back to a year ago you would like to say “I went from that to this”.
This program will not give you that, because it’s not a program. There is zero progression from week to week and so the body does not need to adapt.
There is nothing new or novel about the workouts after you’ve completed a few, and then your body has grown accustomed.
The workouts also suffer due to the fact that they are based on time – you don’t do sets and reps. This means some lazy people might be able to loaf the entire time without putting in real work because “Hey, I lasted the 23 minutes”.
This plan is okay, at best. It does have its applications, but personally, I believe there could be better ones to follow – especially ones with nutrition and supplementation guides.
Rating: 2.5 out of 5