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  • Writer's pictureBethany

INSANITY MAX 30: Cardio Challenge

Updated: Nov 12, 2021

Here we go! It is time for me to start my reviews of INSANITY Max 30! Are you excited? I am excited. Welcome back to SHAUN T baby! I apologize for the iPhone photos - it was the best I had at the moment.

Here is my INSANITY Max 30: Cardio Challenge review!

Total Time: 30 minutes (plus 2 minutes for the cool down) Equipment: none

You apparently use this workout as your Fit Test throughout the entire program.


If you know Shaun T at all, you know the warm-up is not just running around. You’re in it from the start and I began laughing from the start because I knew what was about to happen.

You do this twice and each round takes 2:30.

  • Chest Open Jack - arms up and they open and close as your feet go in out and out. Keep your elbows up and ‘take off like an airplane’. :) Think of it like a jumping chest fly.

  • Jack Uppercut - feet open and close as you alternate arms with uppercuts. 'Use your core, push up, make sure you’re up there’. These should seem familiar.

  • 1-2-3 Knee - two steps left with a knee raise and touch, 2 steps the other way, opposite knee raise touch. Remember to reach back with the straight arm.

  • Cross Jack - feet open and cross as you alternate arms overhead. This should seems familiar since it is in INSANITY. The modifier is the girl with the blue shorts in the front to the left of Shaun T.

  • High Knee Jab - alternating arms with a front jab while doing high knees (alternating knees). Of course we cannot just do high knees. No way.

DO IT ALL AGAIN for the second round.

Around 5 minutes, you do 'an active stretch’. AKA: water break for 30 seconds. I splashed some water in my face (down my chest). I was just happy I hadn’t 'maxed out’ yet. Water break? Shaun T? HAHAHAH.

Shaun T does not mess around - hurry up - I don’t know how he talks the entire time.

Circuit 1 (they mirror the leg and arm sides for you):

  • Squat Kick Right - squat and then kick your right leg up, repeat. This is a jumping move the entire time - the modifier does it without jumping.

  • Pike-up Spider Right - do a pike up (straight legs, feet in and butt in the air) and then immediately bring your right leg forward next to your arm for a spider - directly back into the pike, repeat. Remember to go back to the PIKE not the pushup position.

  • 10 & 2 - what and what? Okay - elbows into the side and jump left to right like you are a plyometric clock. Jump on the balls of your feet and keep your core tight. This is somewhat of a recovery but keep your core tight or it’s too easy.

Swish, swash, swish, swash…

REPEAT THE CIRCUIT AGAIN but with the opposite leg.

This is what happens when you need a break/max out. You write it on the (shame board - just kidding) chalk board:

Around 10 minutes you get a 'water break’.

Circuit 2:

  • Medicine Ball Twist - at first I was thinking WHAT? Then, I figured it out. Twist left to right (while jumping your feet in and out) while keeping your core tight and pretending to hold a giant medicine ball.

This looks like a dance move, ignore that:

  • Plank Jack + In & Out - in a plank position - jump your feet open and back together, bring your knees in and then back out. Repeat. This should look familiar - it is in INSANITY.

  • 4 Jab + 4 High Knee - four jabs alternating arms and four alternating knee raises (with a twist). Eventually, on the last round, these got so fast I had to scream out the counts and flail.

This took about 2 minutes. DO IT ALL AGAIN.

DO IT FOR A THIRD TIME. 'Third time through in this circuit is where you really max out.’

Around 15 minutes, you get another water break. This is halfway.


Circuit 3:

  • Plyo Power Knee Right - bring the right knee up to your hands WHILE the supporting leg hops.

  • Scissor Stance Jack - touch the opposite leg, jump and cross your feet, land back down and touch the opposite foot. Repeat. 'You gotta go down to go up.’ Oh Shaun, you’re so cute.

  • Shoulder Tap + In & Out - you alternate touching your shoulder as your legs jump in and out. Shaun and I both have issues not taking a break during this move. THESE ARE THE WORST!

REPEAT IT AGAIN with the other leg.

Around the same time Shaun went to write his name on the board (17 minutes) is when I took a 2-3 breath break. Therefore, you can consider my Maxed out 17 minutes.

Then he was 'back b*tches’.

REPEAT IT A THIRD TIME - alternating legs.

For the love of….ugh.

'Think about that move that you’re like - Shaun T - I hate this. AND THAT’S THE ONE YOU ATTACK’.

Hey SHAUN T - I hate this one!

Around 20 minutes into it, you get another water break. Not 'a coffee break’.

Circuit 4:

  • Slap Back Jack - arms down - touch your fingertips in front and behind while your feet jump in and out.

  • Suicide Burpee - say what? Yeah, that’s right, run to your right, burpee, Run to your left, burpee, Repeat.

Well now I am just laughing out of madness. I MAY HAVE TAKEN another break for a breath around 21 minutes. Anything with 'suicide burpee’ in the workout is insane.

  • Plank Speed Tap Right - this is like a mountain climber but you stick on one leg - knee in and tap foot, knee back tap foot, repeat. This is not easier than mountain climbers, he is right.

REPEAT IT ALL AGAIN with the other leg.

Then, DO IT ALL AGAIN for a third time. Alternating legs.

At 25 minutes, you get a water break. Also known as - spray water at your face.

Circuit 5:


  • Chair Squat - you squat with your hands down - jump feet together into a chair position and arms up - back flat. Don’t round your back.

My feet together, is not so together here:

  • Football Runs - run in place, turn right, turn center, turn left, turn center, move right, move left, move back, set and SPRINT! Remember to scream during the sprint or Shaun T gets mad.

  • 2 Jab + 2 Tuck - jab twice to your left, jump knees up twice and slap them, jab twice to your right, two tuck jumps, repeat.




During the 2 Jab + 2 Tuck, they stand in a circle and I maaaaay have gotten goosebumps. Or it could have been the sweat all over my face.

Cool Down:

  • Since Shaun T knows you need some kind of cool down, there is 2 minutes attached after this workout. This is an active cool down so you do a little jogging, inhale and exhaling the arms up and down, reaching to the left and right foot, rolling up and reaching to the ground, pulling the knees in, more breathing, and celebrating. This should look familiar to T25's cool down.

My Final Thoughts:

PRETTY quickly into this workout, I remembered what it is like to do Shaun T’s cardio:

  • The four bobby pins and pony tail holder were no match - my hair was in my face and eye balls most of the time.

  • I was drinking more of my own sweat than I was the water (with Aminos/BCAAs mixed in) that I tried splashing into my mouth during the few water breaks.

  • I needed a towel. Do you know how long it has been since my eyes were actually burning from the cardio workout I was doing? INSANITY. I had to grab a shirt out of my hamper and wipe my face one. You’re welcome for that.

  • I have to go back to planning the correct socks, shoes and bra for this cardio. Yeah, you heard me. My socks kept slipping down into my shoes and my bra was not providing adequate… support.

  • Who is this? Shania? Is she the one that wanted to leave in INSANITY?

See her standing around:

  • Danielle is the modifier:

  • Is this Adriana from Asylum? Or INSANITY?

  • Garmin Connect indicates that I burned 308 calories and stayed in one 2 and 3 most of the time! There is not so much of the interval training like INSANITY, if you can tell by my chart here (there are no drops):

This was long winded because there were so many moves. So there you have it, stay tuned for more to come! This is fantastic cardio - harder than T25 and Ruthless, and a nice switch-up from INSANITY since I know those by memory. Your heart rate is high for 30 minutes without 'rest’, it is a full body workout, and YOU NEVER STOP!

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