We try Body Boss: Do fast, at home workouts really work?

Squats, a classic move endorsed by Body Boss. Weights optional.
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Squats, a classic move endorsed by Body Boss. Weights optional.

Ever wondered if those at-home 12-week body transformation programmes seen on Facebook are any good? We did too.

THE BASICS

Body Boss is one of those trendy HIIT (high-intensity interval training) programmes advertised by jolly hotties on Facebook. The promise is an effective equipment-free workout when and where you want it: at home, in a hotel room, with friends in the park, on the beach.

Bland hotties, ahoy!
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Bland hotties, ahoy!

In just 24 minutes, three times a week, you'll attack your spaghetti noodle-arms, pigeon-chest, flabby core, pencil-like legs and flat butt. Yes, your cardiovascular health will improve too, but make no mistake — this programme is primarily about looking good.

GIVING IT A BASH

The selling point for Body Boss is the convenience. You pay your US$50 and you immediately get access to an e-book including four weeks of pre-training exercises and a 12-week training programme. Strap on your running shoes, grab some water and you're ready to start.

Stretching and some yoga moves are built into the Body Boss Method.
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Stretching and some yoga moves are built into the Body Boss Method.

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Given that I generally get to the gym once a week and walk the dog up a hill a couple of times a week, I am no beginner, so I blithely skip the pre-training exercises and head straight to the 12-week programme. First up: legs and butt.

I think this is the right call, but Body Boss is no cake walk. I can't manage the third set of side-to-side plank jumps and catch myself cheating on the lunges because my knee hurts (this is a long-standing problem stemming from an injury 20 years ago).

It's a long 24 minutes and I am grateful when my time is up. Two days later I am still sore, but keen to get onto the next workout.

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WHY YOU SHOULD TRY IT

If you love the buzzy atmosphere of a gym or enjoy trying new equipment, Body Boss is not for you. You need to be self-motivated, consistent and a rule-follower to make this programme really work.

You'll love Body Boss if you are struggling to fit in your workouts, hate the idea of a big time commitment, or find other sweaty people off-putting. It is efficient, it gets your heart pumping and the cost is competitive. That said, there are similar programmes on YouTube for free.

RISK RATING

Like any HIIT workout, it can be tricky to maintain good form. Sloppy lunges or burpees can lead to injury, so it's important to know what you are doing. Included in your Body Boss ebook are GIFs of exercises to show you exactly how they are meant to be done.

I followed along on the screen of my phone and I found the GIFs really handy.

However, if you have never taken part in an exercise programme, this is probably not the way to start. Likewise, if you have an existing injury you may need to modify some of the exercises to make them low-impact or leave them out altogether. If you are unsure, consult your doctor.

ANY SURPRISES

As a 40-something mother of two whose Facebook feed has been carpet-bombed with Body Boss promotional posts, I was a little annoyed by the sameness of all the Body Boss models. These people do not look anything like me, not even a future me who has completed the Body Boss Method, got hair extensions and learned how to pose.

Their bland-hotty sameness robs the website of authenticity. In contrast, Betty Rocker, who also advertises her body transformation programme on Facebook, sports tattoos, an endearing array of headwear and a face-splitting grin.

WHERE TO GET MORE INFO

Head to Facebook or bodyboss.com

 - Stuff

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