After purchasing the Max Workouts program a couple of months back I have just recently come to the end of the training schedule about 3 weeks ago.
Although the program can get you results (and did for me), my opinion after completing the 90 days is that it isn’t the most efficient way to get in shape and lose body fat. After testing other a couple of competing programs that take a different approach (which have been reviewed elsewhere) I feel most people would be better off following a system other than Max Workouts.
The program is however a good choice for certain people. Keep reading as you could be one of those people who Max Workouts is designed for, but in my opinion the program is too difficult to stick with – it requires high intensity training 5 days per weeks which you need gym access to complete – and doesn’t focus enough on diet/nutrition to achieve fat loss.
Recently I’ve been recommending these two programs over Max Workouts for all of the clients I look after. I’ll explain later in this article why they get better results:
For Men: The Fat Diminisher (their intro video is really worth watching)
For Women: The Venus Factor
Now, for those of you who still want to consider this program let’s move on to my experience after completing the 90 day schedule…
My Results From The Max Workouts Program
I am a bit disappointed that I didn’t get my body fat measured before starting the program as there has been quiet a nice drop, especially over the last month, and I would have like to have been able to quantify that. I am however leaner than when starting the program, with less body fat.
It seems that I am not the only one who got results with this program, there are a large number of testimonials from people who have also found it beneficial on the official site. Although keep in mind that you could only ever expect positive feedback to appear on the site selling the program. Having said that, I find the testimonials to be believable.
As mentioned I do think most people are better off taking a different approach to fat loss though, and I’ll get into that shortly.
For a minute let’s look at Max Workouts in more depth though.
What’s Included in the program?
As standard you will receive the following e-books when you purchase:
1 – Core Program Max Workouts E-book
This contains a short introduction and some of the theory behind the training followed by detailed descriptions of what you need to be doing each week. This book contains the information you need to get through the program including weekly schedules, descriptions and photographic demonstrations for every exercise and also alternative exercises if you are unable to any of the standard ones for whatever reason. As the core part of the program this is a short read and contains just enough detail to get you started after about 30 minutes of reading.
Later in this article I’ll look in-depth at what the actual daily and weekly workouts look like.
2 – Lean Body Diet e-book
You will have a lot of difficulty out-training a bad diet and it is often said that 70-80% of your fat loss results will come from nutrition, not your workout routine.
The Lean Body Diet book gives some basics about healthy eating and calorie requirements for losing weight, however this part of the program seems almost like an afterthought or ‘add-on’. It is really secondary to the very intense training schedule you’ll need to stick to in the main program. In my opinion, for best results, the focus should be reversed – with a lot more emphasis on diet and nutrition.
Unfortunately, Max Workouts really is all about the training with little focus on the nutrition side. Most people are going to see much better results with a program that primarily is based on solid nutritional advice and really making sure you get that in order. A little sensible exercise is then all most people need to literally melt away body fat. Also, keep in mind that many older people simply aren’t going to be able to keep up with the training schedule recommended by Shin Ohtake.
My experience, and the experience of my clients leans towards these two programs instead of Max Workouts:
For Men: The Fat Diminisher
For Women: The Venus Factor
3 – Muscle Recovery e-book
Recovery is an important part of any training program and this guide does a good job of explaining how to ensure your body is able to recover as quickly and effectively as possible. This is a highly recommended read if you want to get the most from the program and I would advise reading through it at least once. In fact, you’ll definitely need it due to the intensity of this program.
4 – Body Weight Exercises e-book
Does what it says on the tin. If you don’t have any equipment because you are traveling or away on business etc then this book details some exercises you can do that make use of your body weight. Nothing groundbreaking in this section, but the exercises will help you stay in shape when you don’t have access to a gym.
5 – Smoothie Recipes e-book
This is a nice addition to the program for no extra cost. I have not got around to trying out any of the recipes myself yet but they look nice and pretty simply to make.
Max Workouts Club
Included when you make a purchase is a 30 day ‘free’ membership of the monthly online club. This is a bit of a disappointment as really you’re just accessing a user form, which isn’t very active, and the ability to see video demonstrations of the exercises in the program. All this can be found easily on YouTube though if you’re not sure how to do a particular one.
**Important: If you don’t physically cancel your monthly membership from the Max Workouts Club you’ll get charged automatically every month until you do. The price is just under $30 per month. This I found frustrating, and it isn’t made very clear during the purchase process**
My Overall Experience Going Through The Workout Program
The tagline for the course is ‘The 90 Day Lean Body Fitness Program’ which technically is a fair description.
The program is NOT designed to build huge amounts of muscle mass and make you look like the incredible hulk. What it is designed to do though is develop lean muscle and burn fat. I will mention at this point that the program is published for both men and women, there are different versions for each.
The person Behind MaxWorkouts.com is a man called Shin Ohtake, who seems to be a trusted fitness expert with successful clients. The vast majority of Shin has put in this program is made up of photos of him doing the exercises, and also charts telling you what to do on which day.
Let’s talk about that now…
Weekly Schedules and Exercises
So what exactly does the program involve? Well, there are basically two different types of workout which are scheduled on alternating days. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays are high intensity weightlifting circuits, Tuesdays and Thursdays are high intensity interval cardio (HIIT). You’re going to need a gym membership for most of the circuit workouts, because of the equipment used.
The ‘high intensity’ part should not be taken lightly. If you follow Shin’s advice then every session will make you really work. Doing workouts of this intensity 5 days per week without a break is going to be too much for most people in my opinion. Even if not physically, just the amount free time and commitment needed to stick to this schedule alone is going to cause most people not to complete the program.
For clients wanting a more effective option that delivers quicker fat loss, I refer them to one of these programs:
For Men: The Fat Diminisher
For Women: The Venus Factor
Strength Training Sessions
The strength training workouts (Mon, Wed & Fri) focus on compound exercises that work multiple muscle groups and develop functional strength. There is no room for ‘isolation’ training in Max Workouts so you will not find any tricep curls or crunches. The exercises focus on a handful of basic movements such as push, pull, deadlift and a couple of others. There are many variations on these movements and Shin explains their benefits clearly.
Strength training workouts are preceded by a short warm up to get your heart rate going and loosen yourself up. To start with I did not really do these properly but make sure you follow the instructions in the program. I got a lot more from my workouts when the warm ups were completed properly. The main session consists of a handful of exercises completed in a circuit or ‘round’ with no rest between exercises and 15-60 seconds rest between rounds. It is absolutely key to make sure you keep track of rest times as these are limited to make sure you are constantly working hard and keeping your heart rate going. After each workout, if you have followed the program, you will definitely be DONE. Workouts are very intense! In total the session time is roughly 45 minutes including your warm-up and warm down.
There is a short optional core workout which can be added to the end of the strength sessions.
High Intensity Cardio Sessions
The HIIT cardio sessions on Tuesdays and Thursdays are just as intense as the strength training. Sessions last 30-40 minutes including warm-up and can be carried out using any cardio machine such as a treadmill, cross trainer or static bike.
HIIT in this program basically consists of various intervals of high intensity work followed low intensity. Intervals last betwen 30-60 seconds.
Do I Need a Gym Membership?
To get the most out of the program, definitely. If not then you’ll need to buy some expensive weight training equipment and have space to use it safely at home. Investing a few hundred dollars in some barbells and dumbbells will allow you to do most of the weights sessions. Also, if you don’t want to do sprints or cycling sessions outside for your HIIT then you’re need access to a treadmill or static bike. It is also recommended to buy an interval timer to time your sessions.
What I Liked About the Program
· Simple, you can start on the day you buy it.
· No nonsense. You don’t get too much unnecessary content.
· Short sessions. Training lasts under an hour.
· It did get me results. I became leaner and lost body fat.
What I didn’t Like
· You need to train 5 days per week for a full 90 days. With an optional 6th day on the weekends.
· Very high intensity training for days in a row without breaks. This will be too much for most people to actually stick with.
· You need to be in very good health and have very good levels of fitness in order to start the program.
· Not enough focus on nutrition for fat loss.
· The main strategy for getting in shape is mainly just ‘brute force and determination’ for 3 months straight, rather than being more strategic.
· Costs are high for an online program ($39 – to over $150)
· You’re automatically signed up to the monthly membership at $27 per month, without necessarily realizing
Although I did get results with this program it was a huge struggle – much more than it should of been. I’m surprised I managed to stick with it, and am confident that a lot of people just will not see it through. Ultimately, this is why most people fail at any kind of weight loss or fitness goal: the program they’re following simply asks to much and they give up.
A nutrition based program which helps you easily change your eating habits, while also introducing some workouts is a much better option. With that in mind I now recommend one of the two programs below to my clients. Their results have definitely validated this decision:
For Men: The Fat Diminisher (make sure you watch the informative intro video)
For Women: The Venus Factor
Those programs will allow you to achieve more fat loss in less time by following a lot more convenient schedule. The results are more long term because you’ll develop better eating habits.