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TOPIC: How many calories burned during Insanity?!

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May 20, 2010 6:34 PM
I just did Insanity Plyometric Cardio Circuit. I don't have a HR monitor yet, but getting one soon. Does anyone have a general idea of how many calories are burned during this DVD? I know it won't be exact because it's different for each person, but I'd just like a ballpark idea.

Plus, where can I get just a simple, inexpensive HR monitor?!

Thanks for any help :)
May 20, 2010 6:57 PM
I actually posted the same question yesterday!! I went into the exercise diary and posted under Calisthenics (pushups, sit-ups), vigorous effort for the amount of I dont have a HR monitor yet. It was right around 320 calories for me.
Are you just starting Insanity? Dont you love it...its definitely a work out but you really start to feel so amazing! Good luck!!
May 20, 2010 7:01 PM
May 20, 2010 7:02 PM
I burned 340 doing Pure Cardio yesterday, I am 26, 5'5 and 188 pounds. I have a Polar F7 is was around $100 but I believe there are cheaper models, it is so worth it though! Good Luck!
May 20, 2010 7:41 PM
I don't know the sceintific terms but it is normally 10 cal a min so if you did insanity plyo cardio circuit for 39 mins and your hr was in fat burn level that would be 390 calories but you can burn more depending on your intensity if your really digging deeper!! Hope that give you a general idea.Also you know weight plays a part as well. My2cents
Edited by NewImprovedCnbethea1 On May 20, 2010 7:44 PM
May 21, 2010 6:33 AM
Thanks everyone!

Jessica- yes I'm just starting! I'm doing Day 3 today, are you loving it?! I am!!
May 21, 2010 6:35 AM
I think it depends on your intensity level you do it at and how long you rest

Im 5"10
185 lbs

Mine varies when I do it between 350-525....and im usually drenched in sweat too
May 21, 2010 7:45 AM
I got a HRM at Walmart for like $50 and was surprised that it does calculate calories.

You need to use the strap so it has a constant reading of your heart.

Good luck!
Edited by Deweypc20 On May 21, 2010 7:45 AM
May 21, 2010 8:00 AM

Thanks everyone!

Jessica- yes I'm just starting! I'm doing Day 3 today, are you loving it?! I am!!
May 21, 2010 8:01 AM


Thanks everyone!

Jessica- yes I'm just starting! I'm doing Day 3 today, are you loving it?! I am!!

oops! still trying to get used to this 'quote' thingsmile ... I seriously love it!!
August 16, 2010 10:34 AM
I had the same question ... this is Day 1 for me of Insanit... what a butt kicking that was!
August 16, 2010 11:01 AM
I have a HRM but need to replace the battery in the watch, but I used the calisthenics option as well the last time I did it (and will probably keep that option until I get the watch part back).

As for getting the HRM, I suggest the Polar F6 or higher. I have the F6 and like it a lot. Starting with the F6 and later models, Polar started 'encrypting' the signal from the strap to the watch so that you won't get interference from other HRM's or machines (if you ever decide to go to the gym or workout with other people who have HRM's). That's something you want to consider when looking at HRM's. If you're looking at two models and one has the encryption and one doesn't, definitely go with the one with the encryption then you'll never have to worry about your numbers being off.
August 16, 2010 12:42 PM
I have burned no less than 600 calories and no more than 800 calories doing the Insanity dvd's. These are just the first 30 day dvd's. Can't wait to see what I burn when I hit the "max" dvd's.
August 17, 2010 4:25 PM
First month of Insanity I was burning 600 plus and 2nd month 800 to 980. The longer workouts and the jumps are really getting the calorie burn higher.
February 8, 2011 12:19 AM
I find it difficult to micromanage my consumed to burned calories while doing insanity. So I manually override most of the calculations of myfitnesspal. This is what has worked pretty well for me:

Figure out your own caloric needs using the Harris Benedict:

Men: 66 + (6.23 x weight lbs) + (12.7 x height inches) - (6.8 x age in years)

Women: 655 + (4.35 x weight lbs) + (4.7 x height inches) - (4.7 x age in years)

That will account for your sedentary calorie needs (everything before activity)

Then take that number and figure out your activity level. If you're doing Insanity 6 times a week your activity level is probably 1.7 If you're doing it 3-5 times a week then your activity level is probably 1.55. If you are doing insanity 3-5 times a week and then you work as a server, than 1.6 may be more appropriate, etc.

So take that sedentary calorie need amount you found in the equation above and multiply it by your activity level.

If you are looking to lose weight. then subtract the necessary calories from that amount. 1lb = 3500 calories so if you want to lose 1 pound a week you would take 3500 x (pounds) / 7 and that's the number you want to lower per day. So if you want to lose 1 pound a week it's 3500 x 1 / 7 which is 500 calories to lower. If you want to lose 2lbs a week it's 3500 x 2 / 7 = 1000 calories to lower. Same with half pounds (.5) etc.

Once you have calculated this final number of calories per day. Manually override the myfitnesspal to that number, I also have it stated that I want to "maintain" my current weight etc. But if you do this, it's important that you DO NOT ADD THE INSANITY EXERCISE TO YOUR DIARY as it was already accounted for in 'fitness level'.

If you "record your new weight" often, you can still use the fun little scale to get closer to your goal, etc.

I know it's longer and more complicated, but it's a bit more accurate, and then you don't have to worry so much about the calorie difference between recovery weeks, versus month one, versus month two.

I know there are still some out there that insist on keeping the HRM store in business and want to nail every single calorie, etc. And that's cool, to each his own. I just found that this is a pretty easy way for those who are not into the "technical" side of fitness training to have a good base to go from, especially with making myfitnesspal compatible with Insanity, as the myfitnesspal is a great way to keep track of calories, and carb/fat/protein ratios.

Hope that helps.
February 28, 2011 1:17 PM
It's going to take me a second to digest all of that but seemed logical before my brain exploded.
March 25, 2011 3:05 PM
I ordered a HR monitor on Amazon, and its great and the price is great as well, it calculates calories burned, time in zone, maximum heart rate, etc, easy to use and really accurate....
March 25, 2011 3:29 PM
I do the Insanity Max workouts - I burn at least 650-800 cals everytime
March 25, 2011 3:29 PM

First month of Insanity I was burning 600 plus and 2nd month 800 to 980. The longer workouts and the jumps are really getting the calorie burn higher.

Holy crap I wish I could burn that many calories I can barely get to 400
March 25, 2011 3:33 PM

First month of Insanity I was burning 600 plus and 2nd month 800 to 980. The longer workouts and the jumps are really getting the calorie burn higher.

This is actually pretty close to what the HRM says for me. I think the lowest burn that I saw was around 400, and that was the Fit Test. For me, Plyo Cardio Circuit > Pure Cardio > Cardio Power and Resistance in the first month, and I averaged between 600 and 750 for each of those workouts.

I think that's why according to the Insanity workbook I am supposed to be eating around 1900-2000 calories doing Insanity. That would actually be the 1200 + 700 exercise calories on MFP which is spot on.
March 25, 2011 3:42 PM
Since Insanity is a different model than regular Circuit Training I believe it burns more than the "base" per 10 minutes. Doing regular cardio or even P90X Cardio X is a cake walk compared to the Insanity workouts. In my workout history I show I was burning almost 600 calories in the 42 minute workout. The 2nd month I was burning between 725 and 825 calories per workout.

That being said it depends on your level of intensity and effort. I was coming very close to pegging the upper limits of recommended heart rate when doing Insanity. If you are staying well below you will burn less - I would drench my sweat towel during each circuit! ;-)
April 7, 2011 4:49 AM
Thank you so much for that breakdown! It really helped!
April 21, 2011 3:47 PM
On my 3rd day of the first month of insanity. Kicking my ass! Just got my HR monitor, it showed right after I finished Cardio Power & Resistance. I found some good calculators once you get data on your average HR for the workout. See or or this site actually gives you the formula (again you need average HR) but I punched it into excel so I can calculate myself now - I must have to dig deeper, I don't think I'm burning 500 cal yet. Looking forward to the recovery day tomorrow.
April 21, 2011 4:08 PM
I just did that workout last night! My HRM said I burned 532 calories...having an HRM is definitely one of the best investments I've made!! :) (ps - I have the Polar FT7 - well worth the money!)
May 15, 2011 12:34 PM
From what I got from the website, its suppose burn 468 calories of 42 minutes. I spoke to one my coworker. He stated from what he remember reading that it can burn up to 600-700 calories per workout, if you do full intense. I hope this will help.

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