Body For Life: Final Recap

by Khushboo on May 28, 2012

Today marks the start of the week where I keep saying “It’s my last ___________ as a 23-year old”.  Just for the record, today is the last Monday that I’ll ever put up a post as a 23-year old :) !  Birthdays aside, I wanted to discuss my experience on Body for Life (BFL).  Although it took me slightly longer than the 12 weeks due to traveling, I finally finished the plan without skipping a single workout- 72 workouts, done & dusted!

Three weeks into the plan, I shared my thoughts about it.  Now that it’s over, here’s my overall take on BFL

BFL Pros

  • Plenty of online help: I’m guilty of having not read the actual book.  All the information was fortunately available on the site, and in ample detail.
  •  Short workouts:  Each week was broken down into 3 x 46-minute strength and 3 x 20-minute HIIT cardio sessions.  I always rounded up my HIIT sessions with another 15-20 minutes of moderate-intensity cardio.
  • Well-rounded plan:  The upper and lower body workouts target each major muscle group, and the HIIT workouts were short, yet effective.
  • No complicated moves/machines involved: The plan can be carried out anywhere as long as you have a set of dumbbells of varying weights.
  • Pyramid structure: During both the cardio & weight training sessions, I kept varying the intensity (i.e. speed/rep #) which meant there was little room for boredom.

BFL Cons                                           

  • Repetitive workouts: If the workout structure evolved over the 12 weeks and incorporated new exercises, I don’t think my interest would have slowly waned towards the end.
  • Too few rest days: Each workout left my body exhausted which is a great feeling, but not 6 days a week.  Ideally 1 of the 6 sessions could have been replaced with a low-intensity workout.
  • Pyramid structure: I know I listed it as a pro but on the flip side, it was a pain to keep going back for a different set of dumbbells between each set.

Much of why I embarked on this 12-week program was down to vanity.  Although I did lose a couple of inches, it wasn’t anywhere close to the transformation that I saw online of other BFL’ers.   Had I followed the the eating part of the plan completely, I know my results would have been better.  In terms of fitness, I am lifting heavier than when I started.  Not much heavier, but I’ve made enough progress to have made the plan worth my while.  Despite cutting back my cardio to shorter &  faster sessions, I have also noticed a huge improvement in my endurance.

Aside from physical differences, BFL has changed my outlook to working out completely.  Prior to the plan, I was the ultimate cardio queen and felt that every workout had to be a at least 50 minutes long.  I’ve come to realize that I can get in a great workout in under 30 minutes.  In addition to that, weight training has become a vital component of my workouts.  As I have finally found an enjoyment in it, and know that my body responds well to weight training, I am going to continue with lifting weights 3 times and cardio 2-3 times a week.

Would I suggest Body for Life?  Although I can’t speak about the eating part, I would highly recommend BFL.  If you’re looking for a consistent fitness plan which completely lays out your workouts and challenges you without taking up too much of your time, Body for Life is worth a try!

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{ 31 comments… read them below or add one }

cragsandveggies May 28, 2012 at 9:15 pm

Congratulations on being finished! What’s next?

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Khushboo Thadani May 29, 2012 at 3:56 pm

Thanks! I just signed up for some up for some personal training sessions to ensure I have my form correct :) !

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sprint2thetable May 28, 2012 at 9:25 pm

Great review. I’ve been toying with the idea to trying out the program. Maybe when my knee heals…

You’re so right about abs being diet. I like dessert wayyyy too much!

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Khushboo Thadani May 29, 2012 at 3:56 pm

Thaks, Laura! I’d love to hear your experience on BFL if you ever do it! And I’m glad you share my dessert sentiments!

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Brittany May 28, 2012 at 10:26 pm

Yahooo great job on completing this!! I don’t know if I would be able to do it haha.

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Khushboo Thadani May 29, 2012 at 3:56 pm

Thanks Brittany & trust me, if I did it I’m sure you can too!

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katalysthealth May 29, 2012 at 12:24 am

If I belonged to a gym I would probably do it. For now though, I just make my own routintes up. Ive done P90X and loved it though!

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Khushboo Thadani May 29, 2012 at 3:57 pm

I’ve heard about P90X but never actually tried it…at least not yet ;) !

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sonalii1988 May 29, 2012 at 12:54 am

Well donee K!! Perfect way to end ur 23rd year ;) Happy birthdayyy in advance!

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Khushboo Thadani May 29, 2012 at 4:01 pm

Thanks, Sonal! As you’re a 1988 baby too, are you 24 or turning 24?

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JoJo May 29, 2012 at 1:13 am

I know what you mean about the repetitiveness, it’s hard to keep going when you start to get bored of the work out! But you finished it, great job!
Happy birthday and I hope you have a great day on your special day Khushboo!

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Khushboo Thadani May 29, 2012 at 3:57 pm

Thanks so much Jojo- I really appreciate the wishes :) !

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Meg May 29, 2012 at 3:11 am

I am so so so proud of you Khushboo! SO PROUD!

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Khushboo Thadani May 29, 2012 at 3:58 pm

Wow Meg, that means a lot- thank u!

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Tessa Merrick (@Tessa8m) May 29, 2012 at 5:58 am

AN amazing accomplishment! I have heard a lot of great things about this program, and also that it is hard, so you are impressing me m’dear :)

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Khushboo Thadani May 29, 2012 at 3:59 pm

Thanks Tess, it really is a great program! Every time I started whining to myself how hard it is (especially the HIIT workouts), I had to remind myself that it’s called a ‘challenge’ for a reason :) !

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Honey What's Cooking May 29, 2012 at 9:21 am

Aww.. you’re still a puppy… last week as a 23 year old. You are so ambitious and accomplished… give you so much credit. :-) I’m a GEMINI too. :-)

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Khushboo Thadani May 29, 2012 at 4:00 pm

Thanks so much- this comment has made my day …and woo for being a Gemini too :) ! I hear we aren’t the easiest people to deal with at times!

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Errign May 29, 2012 at 9:49 pm

I have a few more weeks as a 23 year old myself :)

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Khushboo Thadani May 30, 2012 at 4:48 pm

Fellow Gemini?

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Errign May 30, 2012 at 5:09 pm

Cancer!

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Sara K May 29, 2012 at 10:08 pm

Hmm if I can just get my ass into a fitness routine I would most definitely try BFL…and you’re almost twenty-four? Damnnnn woman almost at quarter of a century! Haha…just kidding, we are young still ;) Excited for your bday posts!

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Khushboo Thadani May 30, 2012 at 4:48 pm

Hahaha key word being “almost”…still have one more year to bask in my youth :) !

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onehealthymunchkin May 30, 2012 at 6:40 am

Congrats on completing the program girl! :D I don’t know if I would be able to do it, so I really admire you for sticking to it!

PS. When is your birthday??

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Khushboo Thadani May 30, 2012 at 4:48 pm

Thanks so much!! My birthday is on Monday (June 4th)!

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Alexiasana May 30, 2012 at 3:29 pm

great review- i am teaching so much yoga at the moment that there is not enough time to do any strength training. i wished i had more time to work on my abs and upper body and i try to focus on more protein in my diet too but somehow it does not work like i would like it to. i do know that part of it is that i am working way to much and my dopamine (stress) level is probably much to high….lol… maybe i should quit and come to workout with u for a little while :)

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Khushboo Thadani May 30, 2012 at 4:50 pm

Thanks Alexiana! On the contrary, I admire that you fit in so much yoga. Flexibility is one area of fitness which I slack on and could definitely benefit from!

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Gayatri June 7, 2012 at 9:02 am

Wow! Your posts are so frikkin insprational. I haven’t lost any weight with Bikram Yoga or running. I’ve lost inches but no weight. I think I need to see a dietitian and change the way I eat.

PS – I’d fallen off the blogging wagon with this move and my Bikram Yoga but I’m back on now so I’ve commented on the posts I missed :)

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Khushboo Thadani June 7, 2012 at 11:01 am

Congrats on losing inches….weight is just a number! I know we shouldn’t worry what other people think but let’s be honest, we do to some extent. And ultimately, they’re going to notice inch loss, not what the scales say!

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Sig June 20, 2012 at 9:01 am

Hiya!!! Congrats on finishing BFL!!! I err STILL haven’t done it due to the irregualarity in my life but now I am ready to git back on it!! But you had some good results and I think it really does help u set up a plan for the future.

How bout the Jamie Eason program next? A few bloggers have done it and had good results too – something different?

And um, you’re only 23…I mean 24?? Holy cow. I wish I was as smart and articulate at that age!!

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Khushboo Thadani June 20, 2012 at 11:23 am

Hahaha thanks Sig :) ! I’ve read a bit about Jamie Eason but not sure I like the sound of it, especially phase 2/3 with the 90-minute workouts! I stated working out with a PT, which I’m loving…will share about it soon!

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