After constantly seeing the BBG hashtag all over Instagram for about a year now, I made the plunge into starting the BBG Beginner program. I wanted to share the first month’s results and feedback for any of you who are interested in learning more about BBG. First of all, what does BBG stand for? The program is by Kayla Istines from Australia and BBG is an abbreviation for Beach Body Guide. Her philosophy is that every woman’s body is different and a workout program should help contour the body to be beach ready but that beach body is unique to each individual.
The beginner program is twelve weeks long which will be the longest program I’ve ever done (if I finish! Fingers crossed!) It consists of three low intensity workouts (walking, swimming and cycling), three high intensity workouts (legs, arms and abs, and full body) and finally a challenge each week. All of the workouts are 35 minutes or less plus a cool down if you want to take advantage of doing that part of the workout.
Before diving into the meat of this post, I wanted to share that I usually wear something really similar to what you see in this post. I’ve tend to get terrible blisters and lately I’ve tried so many brands from Puma to Nike and I happened to pick this pair up for $10. I have worn them 7 miles straight with no blisters! I highly recommend them. I was at my parents and yet again forgot my tennis shoes so ran to Wal-mart and grabbed these lightweight ones. Although I’m drinking a bottle of store bought water in these photos, I often bring along this one from Swell. It’s only $25 and will keep liquids hot or cold all day long. You can use it for coffee or water and I promise you won’t be disappointed. I rounded up a few more items at the end of the post for blush sneakers, black workout gear and a few yoga mats for you!
I figured this post might be easily digestible if I did a Q&A format… so here goes:
Why did you start BBG?
I began BBG because walking or running 4-7 miles a day was becoming inefficient. I wanted to increase my efficiency with exercise and overall tone my body. After seeing the 12 week transformations (like Rach Parcell) and reading tons of blogs and commentary on other people’s results I decided to give it a whirl. I also wanted to take the guesswork out of exercise. I am someone who needs help with creating structure and accountability so downloading an app and following instructions seemed pretty easy.
How active were you prior?
Prior to BBG I averaged walking or running between 100-150 miles a month (according to one of my favorite apps by Adidas called Steps). At least 15 days out of the month I hit over 10k steps. I try to walk everyday, but my goal is always 12k a day. Some days I only make it 3k and others I’ll do 20k but it averages 100-150 miles a month. I was doing no strength or weight training and just tried to walk as much as possible.
How hard are the workouts?
Although they are only 28 minutes long, they are HARD! The first week was really rough. But because it’s broken down into 7 minute circuits, it’s psychologically attainable. I started with each round with the goal of doing an entire lap (which is four exercises). I was completely out of breath and sweating ten minutes in. No joke and I’m not a crazy sweat person. Halfway through I realized there was only 14 minutes left and just pushed through. Each week it’s been easier and I can feel my body growing stronger, but be prepared to be ridiculously sore and exhausted.
Can you modify the moves?
Yes. There’s a ton of stuff on the BBG app which is free the first month and only $20 every month after (sooooooo much cheaper than Orange Theory, Pure Barre or most gym memberships) on how to modify exercises. From not having weights or a medicine ball to not being able to do what I consider an army push up, there’s a whole community and forum within the app to help out! And yes, I’ve modified a few of the exercises.
Do you need equipment?
The BBG Beginner program uses a medicine ball, 5 pound weights, and a yoga mat. I have a yoga mat, 1 pound weights and a beach ball. The workouts are still tough without the actual equipment. I figured at the end of the twelve weeks if I still like doing this, I’ll buy new weights and a medicine ball. I would recommend buying a yoga mat at bare minimum.
Did you change your diet?
Nope. Not yet. I still eat cheese, drink wine and don’t count calories.
What are the results so far?
So far I’ve noticed my bra bands are fitting looser and my stomach is starting to flatten and get more toned. I’ve also noticed more arm definition as well. Although the app tells you to “weigh in” I don’t own a scale (nor want to) and have made note of how my clothes are fitting. I’m currently a size 2-4 looking to end up at the end of the twelve weeks at a 0-2. I’m also only 5’0 feet tall so take that into consideration.
What are some helpful tips if interested in BBG?
First of all, buy a yoga mat and download the app. Take your pictures weekly so you can see the results. The first two weeks were really hard for me to get all the way through each seven minutes. Sometimes I only made it five minutes so I would take a two minute break and then start the next round. If your body is hurting, be careful not to over exert to the point of injury. Many gals do multiple rounds of BBG Beginner. Take your time and make sure you work on doing the exercises properly instead of rushing. Also, walking helped my sore muscles so I recommend on non-BBG days to take a half hour stroll.
I hope this helps! I’ll post a two and three month update if I make it that far but my overall feedback is nothing but positive about this program! Please leave a comment if you have a question!