How It Works
His T25 program is an intense full-body routine, similar to Insanity or P90X. But for those of us who are too busy to spare 45 minutes or an hour at a time to work out, T25 packs all the benefits of a full-length program into just 25 minutes a day.
The Focus T25 program consists of 10 different 25-minute workouts. You start with the Alpha phase, which includes five workouts:
- Speed 1.0
- Total body circuit
- Ab intervals
- Lower focus
You do one workout a day for 4 days, and two workouts on the 5th day. Then you skip a day and do a stretching video on the 7th day.
For another 5 weeks, you switch to the more challenging Beta phase, which includes another set of five 25-minute workouts:
- Core cardio
- Speed 2.0
- Rip't circuit
- Dynamic core
- Upper focus
In each video, Shaun focuses on one area at a time -- upper body, lower body, cardio -- for about a minute each until you fatigue the body part. Then you move on to another area.
You can buy an optional third phase, called Gamma, which includes four DVDs. The program also features a recommended diet to help you lose weight faster.
Intensity Level: Very High
Focus T25 is not for the faint of heart. It's an intense, high-impact workout that doesn't let up for the full 25 minutes. You work every major muscle group, one after another. There are no breaks. Even experienced exercisers may find themselves out of breath after a few minutes.
Areas It Targets
Core: Yes. The cardio segments burn fat throughout the body and include some core exercises. There is also an entire Ab Intervals DVD devoted to strengthening the abdominal muscles.
Arms: Yes. Although many of the routines in the Alpha phase of the workout are lower-body focused, you do get an arm workout from exercises like burpees and planks, where you have to support your full body weight on your hands.
Legs: Yes. The workouts include a fast-paced variety of squats, jumps, kicks, lunges, and jumping jacks, which work your legs from every angle.
Glutes: Yes. Lunges, deadlifts, and squats all work those back-end muscles.
Back: Yes. The Ab Intervals DVD in the Alpha phase includes exercises for the back. The Upper Focus DVD in the Beta phase works the back, too.
Aerobic: Yes. This is an intense, high-impact, high-energy cardio workout that will really make you sweat!
Strength: Yes. Although the workouts don't include hand weights, you use your own body weight to build strength.
Sport: No. This is a workout routine.
Low-Impact: Yes. Although the main program is high-impact, a low-impact version of each exercise is provided.
What Else You Should Know
Cost: The Focus T25 DVD set costs $119.85. If you want to add the Gamma Cycle DVD set, it's an additional $66.80.
Good for beginners? Yes. But you need to pace yourself. Don't try to keep up with the people on the DVD. Focus on your own workout.
Outdoors: No. This program is meant to be done indoors, in front of the TV.
At home: Yes. You buy the DVDs and do the exercises at home.
Equipment required? You need to get the DVDs and an exercise band, which comes with the workout.
What Dr. Melinda Ratini Says:
Focus T25 is great if you are looking for a program that works all the major muscle groups, including your core muscles, and gives you all the aerobic exercise that you need each week. It’s focused into just 25 minutes a day, and who can’t spare that, right?
But it's very intense. So don’t just jump into this one thinking it’s going to whip you into shape if you’ve been sitting behind the computer way too long. Unless you’re up for a big challenge, it might be best to get in shape first using a more moderate workout and then, when you are ready, use this program to keep in top form.
All intense workouts, including Focus T25, come with the risk of injury. So be careful. Warm up and cool down. And watch your technique.
Focus T25 is not for you if you don’t like to push hard or sweat. You won’t get the full benefit unless you are willing to give it your best shot. But the results will be well worth it.
Is It Good for Me If I Have a Health Condition?
If you are already working out and are looking for something new, then check out the T25 program. Just remember that you may not be able to keep up at first. If you have any health problems, check with your doctor before lunging into this program.
If aerobic exercise is part of your diabetes treatment plan, the T25 program can give you 25 minutes a day of a very intense workout. It will help build muscle that will use your blood sugar more efficiently than fat. The more muscle you have, the more energy you burn. This will also help drive your blood sugars down. Your treatment plan will have to be adjusted accordingly, so talk to your doctor about that.
If you have risk factors for heart disease such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol, aerobic workouts such as the T25 can help you lose weight and bring down your numbers. But you will need to clear this with your doctor first.
If you have heart disease, don’t begin such an intense workout. Your doctor may suggest a cardiac rehab program to gauge a safe level of exercise for you.
All those jumps, kicks, lunges, and jumping jacks can be dangerous if you are pregnant. As your belly grows, your center of gravity shifts and can throw you off balance. The risk for injuries and falls climbs.
Also, your joints loosen up as the months roll by. This further puts you at risk for injury. There are safer ways to get in your aerobics.
Some of the moves in the T25 workout can also be a problem for you if you have arthritis, joint pain, or physical limitations. Make sure you opt for the low-impact versions of the moves if you have any joint problems in order to avoid injury.