April 20, 2014





Turbo Fire or Insanity – Which one is better? Which one should I get? The only way to answer these questions correctly is to figure out what your goals are, and what kind of workout you enjoy. Given that these are both extreme workouts, and require a high level of base training to begin with, I’m going to guess that you like a challenge, and aren’t turned off by extreme effort.

So let’s take a close look at both of these workouts,  and help you figure out which is the right one for you. Click on the links below, read along, and hopefully by the time you are done with this article you’ll be able to make up your mind about which workout is better for you.

FAQ’s: Turbo Fire vs. Insanity Workout

- What’s the science behind these workout programs?

- Set your  goals first, then ask: Which workout is better, Insanity or Turbo Fire?

- I want to get back on track. Which one demands more prep before I start?

- I tend to get bored quickly. Which one should I choose?

- All I want is to get a 6 pack. Which program will help me get it faster?

- Which one is more intense, Turbo or Insanity? Which one is tougher?

- How long does it take to complete each program?

- How long do the workouts last?

- What’s included when I purchase these programs?

- Do I need any kind of equipment to do Insanity or Turbo Fire?

- Which one is best suited to do at home?

- I travel a lot. Which workout is better to do when I am on the road?

- What’s the real difference between the two?


What’s the science behind these workout programs?

Turbo Fire is a 90 day workout program that is based on Chalene Johnson’s new approach to cardio kickboxing. She has developed this workout using the principals of High Intensity Interval Training. During the explosive minutes of HITT your system will go as hard as you can, and you will work your body into the anaerobic zone. By using HIIT, you burn an incredibly amount of calories, and continue to burn them even after you’re done with your workout. The other routines included are just as intense, featuring core work, kickboxing cardio at an incredibly high and challenging pace and plenty of stretching and yoga.

Insanity is a 60 day workout program that is based on the theory of Max Interval Training. The idea is that you do bursts of intense routines which last anything from 30 seconds to up to a minute, followed  by short rest periods. The nature of  this  type of routine delivers fat burning results that are considered to be more effective than a conventional cardio approach.  It has been demonstrated that this training method is highly effective for losing fat, especially in the core and abdominal area. Another benefit of Max Interval Training is the power that it has to build endurance and beat fatigue. If you are thinking about running a marathon. I would closely consider incorporation some of the insanity routines into your training schedule.

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Set your fitness goals first, and then ask. Which workout is better, Insanity or Turbo Fire?

If you want to burn as many calories as possible, have only two months in which to do so, and enjoy using absolutely no gear of any kind, then Insanity is for you. Insanity has a more direct and brutal approach. Shaun T will push you as hard as you can go for the full length of each workout, mixing in cardio, sports drills, plyometrics and calisthenics in equal measure.

Turbo Fire is similar in many ways. It’s a fantastic way to burn calories, the workouts can be as short as 15 minutes or up to an hour long, and the HIIT moments are brutally intense. But it is setup like a cardio class, with incredibly high energy music and focusing much more on cardio kickboxing. So if you love to punch, kick and give high knees while enjoying the feel of being in a friendly and supportive class, than this is for you. (Image below – Insanity Results)

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I fell off the wagon and I want to get back on track. Which one demands greater preparation before I start?

It’s important to remember that you control the intensity and pace of these workouts at all time by pressing the ‘pause’ button. If you ever feel truly challenged or feel pain, you should always pause and take a break. Therefore, despite these programs being billed as ‘extreme’, you can always approach them from any level of fitness.

In the Insanity Workout (or like many like to call it The Intensity Workout), the routines are extremely intense and very fast paced. Even the warm-up portion is brutal, and if you are not in some sort of good physical condition, it’s very likely that you will not be able to keep up with it. At the beginning you will find yourself constantly gasping for air, and you will sweat like crazy. Shaun T will motivate you throughout the workout and you will feel the challenge to keep up with the rest of the crew and complete the workout.

The Turbo Fire workout is super intense, but a lot of the moves involve kicking and punching. While you need huge amounts of energy to keep up, you don’t need as much physical strength or preparation as the Insanity Workout calls for. Thus you might find yourself stopping often to catch your breath,  it won’t be as painful or challenging as the Insanity Workout if you’re not in optimum shape.

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I tend to get bored quickly. Which one should I choose?

The Insanity Workout is a two month, incredibly fast paced workout. You’ll barely have time to think between the moment you press play, and you find yourself  fighting to keep up with Shaun T .  Considering that the workout has a very fast pace, and is only two month length it makes it easy to follow.

Turbo Fire is designed to be completed in 90 days, but was deliberately made by Chalene Johnson to be more ‘fun’. The music is absolutely awesome and high energy, and the moves involve all sorts of great kickboxing and dancing. Therefore, if you enjoy the feeling of working out with a bunch of friendly, motivated people, if you like being energized by Chalene’s music and encouragement, this class will fly by.

The way to decide is to ask: do you prefer a two month workout that’s super intense, or a 3 month workout that’s tons of fun?

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All I want is to get a 6 pack. Which program will help me get it faster?

This is a tough call. Both workouts are focused on burning calories, both workouts have core and ab focused routines, and both of them require high energy and constant motivation. I think in this case you can’t go wrong with either program, as both of them should deliver in spades.

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Which one is more intense? Which one is tougher?

Another hard question. Both workouts are intense, both are hard to finish. However, I would say that the sheer physical requirements of the Insanity Workout, from the plyometrics to the calisthenics to the sports drills make it tougher than Turbo Fire, which, while really challenging and demanding more energy than you think is possible, does tend to be more fun and involve more kickboxing than punishment.

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How long does it take to complete each program?

Turbo Fire: Is a 90 day workout program (12 weeks) , designed to work out six days a week.  The workout can also be extended to a 20 week program if you incorporate the “advanced” dvd’s in your routine. In the fitness guide Chalene Johnson asks for 3 pre-requisites before you jump into the meat of the HITT schedule. If you answer NO to any of the questions, it is recommended that you start with the “Prep” workout calendar (included in your fitness guide). This prep schedule is 9 weeks long. Once you are  done with this phase, you can start the HITT workout schedule which varies between 12 to 20 weeks depending on which version of the workout you have (basic or deluxe)

Insanity The Insanity Workout is a 60 day program that asks you to work out six days a week. There are 10 workouts and they range from 40 minutes up an hour. No equipment is required, and you only use your own body weight.  During the first month the workouts are a bit shorter and they build you up for the 4 weeks of month two. During the last month of the workout the routines are more intense and longer.

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How long do the workouts last?

Insanity: This program is broken down into two distinctive phases. Phase 1 ( Month 1)  the workouts average  40 minutes in length. Some days you will have to add the Cardio Abs on top of the workout of the day. The Cardio Abs workout is 20 minutes long. You also have a Cardio Recovery routine which is 35 minutes. During the second month of the program, the routines range from 50 minutes to 60 minutes and are harder than month 1.

Turbo Fire truly runs the range, from the 15 minute HIIT workout to the 55 minute EZ Fire workout. There is almost always a 10 minute stretch at the end in all workouts. The entire workout can be completed in 12 weeks and if you get the advanced dvd’s you can extend the program to 20 weeks. (Image below – Turbo Fire Results)

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What’s included when I purchase these programs?

When you purchase Turbo Fire you will get:

-The Turbo Fire Introductory DVD.

- 12 Workouts.

- Turbo Fire Nutrition Plan.

-Turn Up the Burn Fitness Guide

-Turbo Fire Class Schedule.

-Turbo Fire Lower Body Band.

-Free Online Support.

When you purchase Insanity you will get:

-Dig Deeper Introductory DVD.

- 10 Workouts.

- Elite Nutrition Guide.

-Wall Calendar.

-Fit Test Tracker.

-Free Online Support.

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Do I need any kind of equipment to do Insanity or Turbo Fire?

Both of these workouts require very little equipment. Insanity does not require any type of equipment to be performed. It is suggested to use a heart rate monitor, a matt and a good pair of workout shoes. Turbo Fire makes use of the resistance band that comes with the box set and also asks that you use a matt to work out on.

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Which one is better suited to do at home?

Both Turbo Fire and the Insanity Workout are perfect to be done at home. Their lack of necessary equipment means that you can set up shop in your living room by simply shoving furniture out of the way, and that you can workout without needing a gym at all. Considering that these workouts are very intense, please consider using a well ventilated room to allow enough air flow. You will definitely find your self gasping for air shortly after you start.

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I travel a lot. Which workout is better to do when I am on the road?

When you’re traveling you often have access to little space and no equipment, which is why both of these workouts are fantastic for taking on the road. All you need to do is roll up your matt and resistance band and you’re set with Turbo Fire, while Insanity requires only the matt. How could you go wrong?

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So what’s the real difference between Turbo Fire and Insanity?

The difference between the two is this: Insanity is more brutal, physically demanding in a greater variety of ways and shorter, while Turbo Fire is a longer program that focuses on a cardio workout class environment with an emphasis on kickboxing. If you like no frills, no dancing, just solid, brutal exercise, than the Insanity Workout is for you. If you love the fun, supercharged feel that a cardio class can give you, enjoy kickboxing and don’t like doing too many push-ups, than Turbo Fire is for you.



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