I’ve officially completed BBG 2.0. Which means I’ve done 28 weeks (four weeks of pretraining, weeks 1-12 with BBG 1.0, and weeks 13-24 with BBG 2.0). I did a full review of BBG 1.0 when I finished that program and that answers a lot of the basic questions about the program and my initial opinions on it.
I have a lot to say about this program and it’s almost entirely positive. I don’t think it’s for ~everyone~, but I do believe that most people can make it work for them.
SWEAT App vs. PDF?
My experience with 2.0 was different in some ways than my 1.0. So I wanted to do another review of it. The biggest change was that I switched from the PDF to the Sweat App. I paid $119 for a year-long membership. While this is twice as much as the PDF for the 1.0, I have access to all the Sweat (aka BBG) programs for the entire year. It’s also the same price as ONE hourly session with a personal trainer at my gym. While it’s not “cheap,” the value of what you’re getting (if you’re usually it consistently) is worth it.
For a little breakdown math, just considering the 36 BBG workouts I’ve done since downloading the app (12 x 3), each workout cost $3.31. That’s 1/10th of a SoulCycle class! Now, you don’t get one on one attention that you would get from a personal trainer, but you don’t have to worry about making appointments with someone else’s schedule in mind.
I really liked the PDFs for the most part and thought that I wouldn’t like the app but I was willing to give it a try anyway. I ended up preferring the app over the PDF (for the most part).
What I liked about the app:
– It shows you the breakdown of each exercise visually on the app. So if you’re unsure of how to do a particular set, no worries: there’s a mini Kayla on your screen showing you how it’s done. With the PDF, I’d end up pulling up the moves on Youtube to make sure I was doing them correctly.
– It also has audio cues. With the PDF, I found myself constantly going back to my phone in between each set to remember what the next exercise was. With the app, Kayla’s voice will come on over your music/podcast/audiobook and say the exercise. You do have to tap between each exercise to say you completed it, but it’s so nice to reach over, tap, and then listen to her tell you what’s next while you’re getting into position.
** One funny thing about this is that I now hear Kayla’s Australian accent whenever I hear a commonly said word in real life. For example, she often says “neutral grip” and now whenever I hear “neutral,” I hear it in her voice!!
– The built-in timer is THE BEST.
– It’s easy to keep track of your workouts. It automatically moves from week to week and you can sync your calendar to “schedule” the workouts. If you need a little more motivation to stay on track, the app might be more helpful than a PDF printout- which isn’t going to remind you to do it!
What I didn’t like:
– One time the app froze. It only happened once, but I had to restart my phone and then my workout for the day was lost and I wasn’t exactly sure how to restart it. (I ended up having to let the app’s timer run out for two circuits and then resumed my workout where the app had originally frozen.)
– There are a LOT of workouts per week. With the PDF, it tells you what to do when including LISS (low-intensity steady state) workouts. But for some reason in the app, it seems like you’d have to have multiple days with two-a-day workouts to do everything it recommends. If you’re intense and following it to a tee, I can imagine it developing into unhealthy behaviors which could lead to more injuries.
My Review of 2.0
App vs. PDF aside, I will say that I way preferred the 2.0 program over 1.0 and I liked 1.0 a lot. Even though it’s a challenge, it was easy to follow and I knew what to expect. I did find myself getting slightly bored with 1.0 though. 2.0 was immediately a challenge. It was so hard that there was no room for boredom. And I LOVED that. You definitely need to finish weeks 1-12 as a base though, so it’s a necessary evil.
The exercises within 2.0 are quite challenging. I’d have a slight sense of dread when I looked at what each week would entail. But I have to say, I felt like an absolute badass finishing each one. I’d look at “decline pushups” (where your feet are on a bench and hands are on the ground) and think “NOPE!” only to be surprised by my own strength when I finished fifteen. Not easily– but I did each and every one.
I think that sense of accomplishment with each exercise is what kept me so motivated through 2.0. Where 1.0 seemed to drag through the last month, I felt like I flew through each week of 2.0.
My biggest issue with this one is the same issue I had with 1.0. And it’s a dumb issue at that…. My body transformation wasn’t dramatic. I kept having to remind myself: it’s not what I look like, it’s what I can DO! My physical appearance looks pretty similar but my capabilities are so much more!!! I can do (a lot of) real pushups, squats with dumbells, box jumps for days, etc. I have never felt stronger or healthier.
I was able to do a lot of 1.0 workouts at home with slight modifications. But 2.0 almost always required a trip to the gym (because of weights and equipment). I was strategic with when I went because my gym gets insanely crowded and you do need a little bit of space to complete each workout. At first, I was annoyed that I had to trek to the gym, but ultimately I ended up loving the pilgrimage. I definitely worked out better in a gym environment and it was nice to break up my workday instead of working out right where I worked.
(Now that I’m typing it out, maybe that’s what helped the weeks move by faster too!)
My one big downside to this round was that I’m still nursing my sesamoiditis. I wouldn’t say BBG is the worst for my foot (90% of the exercises don’t require going on the ball of my foot), but it’s certainly not the best. I’m still figuring out what my course of action is. It’s funny but I took a week off from working out (once I finished 2.0) and I thought my foot would feel better without the training but it actually swelled up worse, so… not even sure what to think. I’ve just kind of been suffering through it.
My photo results
I really wish I had worn a different outfit for my photo progress, haha!!! I don’t think I envisioned myself making it this far when I took the first round of photos. I also feel like maybe the results would look better if I were tanner. But I’m kind of feeling anti-fake tan lately and trying to embrace my skin for what it is. I also have two giant bruises/bumps on my leg for the BBG 2.0 so my legs aren’t looking their best.
But the thing I’m most proud of is the difference in my arms!!!! I’ve always been most self-conscious of my arms and I’m kind of shocked at the difference even between BBG 1.0 and 2.0. All those pushups paid off!!!
How to stick with it
I think my most frequently requested question about BBG is how to stick with it. I know this is not the answer people are looking for, but you just have to commit. There’s no other way to do it. Like just about everything in life, you either do or you don’t. It’s going to boil down to your discipline and no one else can find it besides YOU.
With that said, having an accountability group can help a LOT. I had an email thread with about 15 people– 10 of whom dropped off by the end of week two. This time around, I was on a text chain with Meghan and Ashley. It was a lot better having daily check-ins and someone to encourage you when you weren’t feeling it. I think the sweaty selfies is what motivated me the most!! We actually weren’t even on the same weeks, but it didn’t matter. Just knowing we were all in this together, even if it was just virtually, made it a little more bearable.
What’s next for me?
I’m going to start BBG 3.0 this week. Additionally, I haven’t been doing the extra prescribed LISS workouts besides a yoga class here and there. I was going to try to do an 8-week 10k training program in between BBG workouts but I’m not sure it’s the best thing I can do for my foot. I’ve heard spinning is good for sesamoid injuries because the cycling shoe is stiff. We’ll see! I do think the only way I’m going to see a noticeable difference with my body is if I increase cardio (or rather do cardio) and totally overhaul my diet, which I’m not that interested in doing. I could be better with what I eat, but generally speaking, I’m fairly healthy already.