Okay, I'm Doing the BBG Workout
The Bikini Body Guide is a workout program created by a very fit and peppy human woman named Kayla Itsines. She is a 25-year-old Australian who decided to torture millions of people across the globe by making them jump around in their apartments, physically pushing themselves to the brink of death. You know, like the bad guy from the OA. She is younger, richer, and far more flexible than I will ever be. She also makes workouts look easy, which makes her a bit of a liar, even though I'm sure that's unintentional. Believe me--they are NOT EASY. Things that are easier than the BBG workouts: not doing them, wearing your cute workout clothes around the house instead of working out, and possibly putting yourself in a burlap sack with a few feral cats.
The program is a series of workouts broken down into Weeks 1-12 and Weeks 13-24. On Monday (legs), Wednesday (arms and abs), and Friday (full body), you do the suggested exercises that are part of the guide. Basically, each full workout should last around 30 minutes. The sheet for the day lists out 2 circuits that contain 4 exercises each. You repeat the 4 exercises in each circuit for 7 minutes straight, resting for a minute in between each circuit. Does that make sense? Barely! Think like: 10 burpees, 15 squats, 20 pushups, and 30 knee-ups, repeated over and over for 7 minutes while you think about putting your head into a woodchipper. Then a minute break. Then something like 2 minutes of jump-rope, 15 chair squats, some shit with your legs on a bench, and then you put your hand on the stove to feel a different kind of pain but no, actually it's just more PUSHUPS. Then a minute break. Then you repeat those all over again.
The workouts can be done in your gym or in your apartment, if you have the equipment. All you really need is a jumprope, a step stool, a strong chair, and some hand weights or dumbbells. A willingness to subject yourself to pain. A vague need to workout but also stay inside. A fool's errand! The other days of the week you do low intensity cardio---on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays you are supposed to take some kind of long walk into the ocean for 35 minutes until you can no longer see your dumbbells. On Sundays, you curl into a ball and scream into a pillowcase. You do this for 12 or 24 weeks or until your IG page becomes sponsored by Fit Tea or you can grate cheese on your abs. You can buy the program on the website, or you can look on Google images for half the workout, which is rude but also the nature of the Internet.
Or just ask a friend if they bought it. They probably have it on their computer. I am currently texting at least 4 ladies about doing the BBG. We all know about it, and all of us want to chew off our hands and toes because of it. I think BBG has become ingrained in the JUICING AND BRUNCHING WOMAN's genetic makeup along with salmon being a healthy fat and a the idea that nobody ever wants to wear fucking FLARE JEANS again.
Anyway. I decided to do this because my bff had started it, and she has fucking SHOULDER DEFINITION NOW and isn't like, a shoveler or an archer, two jobs where I imagine strong shoulders come into play. I also decided to try it because I am constantly trying to like my body more, and the gym has been a way to do that for me, because my body and mind like to get together and talk mad shit about how AWFUL the gym is, and thus they have bonded over it.
I started this program despite liking about 20% of all required body movements and I did it despite having the strength of a toad that has been run over by a car. I do not like the name Bikini Body Guide. There's some vague "it's to make everyone feel good in a bikini" disclaimer, but uh, Sure, Jan. I've never worn a bikini. If this workout comes along with 24 weeks of intensive therapy that can help me treat my body like a lover, and not like a third cousin that decided to spend the weekend in the city and is asking to crash at my place even though I have plans and I don't even like her, then fine. That is something I am working on through workouts and also not through workouts, just good old fashioned Internet think pieces and witchcraft and black lipstick and stuff. The guide also tells you to take a picture of your body and weigh yourself every week. To that I say: I don't understand the question and I won't respond to it. If it's not a well-lit selfie, I literally want 0 to do with it, and I sure as fuck don't weiiiiighhh myseellllfff anymore.
I am in the middle of Week 2. Week 1 was rough. I had been working out fairly regularly for a month or so after falling off that wagon during the holidays, and I thought that would be enough. It was not. My body became a shell of what it once was--so relaxed and happy and sedentary and lazy. This was some major soreness. It was so sore that I kind of just slithered around my apartment like a basilisk, whining and complaining to anyone who would hear me, even the dust bunnies under the couch. The workouts are incredibly hard for someone like me, who thinks working out is akin to drinking sewer water. I hate them. But!
Peppy Kayla, who I think is a robot from Westworld, could be onto something. For one, it's fun to have something to complain about all the time. Everybody hates BBG--there's this one workout called a Commando that makes me want to watch the VHS tape that's in The Ring--and it's nice to have solidarity in how miserable it is, considering workout communities are usually just memes of water bottles with text like STRENGTH COMES FROM WITHIN. It's easy to do in my apartment, which means it's accessible to plenty of people who work regular jobs and don't want to wake up at 5am to go to the gym. It's easy to follow for people who don't know how to go to the gym and lift shit, which I certainly do not know how to do. And in two weeks, I've seen non-body results that I like: I'm in a routine, I feel like I'm accomplishing something, and I can now do a sit-up. I've been feeling not-so-great after the Christmas holidays about my body, so if there is real toning to be had? Well, I'm not gonna pretend I'm not a part of the Cosmo Girl! machine, baby! I'll take it. I'd like my arms to stop looking and feeling like limp fettucine, and I'm not afraid to say it.
I'm excited to see where 12 weeks can take me. I'm excited to see if I can finish the program. I'm not excited for any of the workouts. I just looked at today's and I want to eat glass. But I am excited for the sweet release of death, or the ability to do a real push-up.
Whatever come first.