Towards the end of December last year, I decided to embark on a health and fitness journey. Let’s call it “reigniting” my fitness journey. After not doing much, if any exercise at all, I thought it was time to do something! Well, actually looking at this photo of myself during my trip to Singapore kinda nailed it.
Having a PT session twice a week just wasn’t cutting it anymore. Never mind that I only started that about a month ago. I wanted to feel stronger, less bloated, and well, fit into some of the clothes I’ve missed wearing.
What exactly is this 28 by Sam Wood program all about? In a nutshell, it is a 28-day program consisting of 28 minutes of exercise each day, complete with meal ideas for breakfast, lunch, dinner and even snacks for $49. Each time you complete an activity (meals you’ve consumed included), you click on “completed” and it keeps score of how many points you’ve accumulated each week. I signed up to that, knowing that I would get a 7 day trial period free, just so I can gauge if it was for me.
First up, exercises. There are, fortunately, different levels you can choose to suit your ability. From,
Each day we’re given a different set of workouts, completed in 4 reps. So you do one set full, then repeat the whole set of workout again, three more times. I started Day 1 with ‘Player’, but it felt that the rest time was too long for me, so Day 2 onwards, I switched to ‘Hotshot’. Perfect. BUT, me, being me, felt bored after two reps of the same sequence and looked forward to hitting the final rep. Seriously, that’s just my nature.
How is this different from my PT sessions? Well, I am given 3 reps of each exercise, but my trainer makes it so that I do two different exercises thrice and then move on to the next two exercises. That way I won’t get bored. So, while I loved the workouts that were on the 28 by Sam Wood program, I found repeating the whole sequence (about 4 exercises), four times a bit boring for me.
Weekends were mainly about ‘active recovery’. This could be running, steps, hill runs followed by yoga or something like that. 28 minutes of each of course. Not too bad.
I thought the food was the hardest for me. Changing the way I eat and focusing A LOT on vegetables – something I actually needed to do anyway – was pure TORTURE! I found myself eating vegetables I would normally run away from. Cauliflower and broccoli. Yuck! But, I did it nonetheless. The program practices ‘Meat Free Mondays’ and having that on the very first day was a KILLER! Having said that, I didn’t actually die from not having meat or poultry.
The great thing about their meals is the fact that you CAN swap what they’ve suggested with any other meals on the list, provided you’re swapping for ‘like’ meals. Meaning, lunch for lunch and dinner for dinner type of thing.
The recipes were easy to follow, and I found myself eating a lot of GREEN FOODS! Good for my digestive system but, it got to be a bit… bland. Plus side? I made my own granola (who even am I??)!
The program also has a pretty good support system via their private Facebook page. You can ask questions, share your progress and even see what others have succeeded or might have issues with.
So, what are my thoughts on this program? Yay or nay? Well, I have to admit, it’s a good program because it keeps you organised, and you don’t have to go looking all over the Internet or YouTube for exercises each day. It did help me get back to a healthier mindset and I’ve found that I’ve stopped snacking altogether. Maybe it’s because I’m in holiday mode and haven’t got any stress laid on me yet. Plus the fact that I do have time to exercise every single day. So much so, it has become a habit.
Did I continue with it? Nope. I stopped after the 7-day trial because I’ve realised that I just needed to know what to eat more of – vegetables – and force myself to have that EVERY DAY! The trick is to eat those I loathe first, then eat what I like. Also, more veggies on my plate compared to carbs. My regular meals I cook for lunch and dinner have always been on the healthier side anyway, but now I have to eat more of the vegetables I do cook instead. Something I used to avoid.
When it comes to exercises, I’m using PopSugar Fitness on YouTube and combining that with my PT sessions twice a week.
How has this whole ‘health kick’ made me feel? At the risk of sounding like a complete w*nker, well, it HAS actually helped a lot. I feel less bloated, slightly stronger – need to build up my core and leg strength to start running again – which is always a great thing.
Who is this for? I’d recommend this if you prefer to have everything thought out for you in terms of the types of exercises and meals. I think this is also one of the more affordable programs as well. Is it for me? Well, it was, at the start, just to help me kickstart my goals.