Chiseled in 30 (CI30) is a home workout program that comes from the company Calisthenics Kingz and designed by HIT Richards (more on HIT later) It’s a two DVD set. Each DVD is a phase of the workout. Hence, Phase I and Phase II.
Each Phase is to be done daily, five consecutive days a week then a two day rest for three consecutive weeks. So, you would do Phase I for three weeks, five consecutive days then a two day rest. After completing the three weeks, then move on to Phase II for five consecutive days with two days rest for three weeks. Get it? The “30” in the “Chiseled in 30” is the number of actual workouts you’ll be doing.
If you follow along with the program, each workout should take about 45-50 minutes total. And believe me, you WILL feel like you worked out when you’re finished.
Oh, and for those that are more advanced than me, you can get the program as a download as well. I’m not sure of the format it comes in for the download, but if you choose to go that route, I’m sure it’s outlined at the Calisthenics Kingz website.
The program also comes with a nutrition plan. As with the two Phases of workouts, there are two Phases of the nutrition plan that corresponds with the workout Phases. So, during Phase I, you should follow a certain nutrition plan and do the same for Phase II. It’s all laid out for you in an easy to follow format.
Who Is Calisthenics Kingz and HIT Richards
The company that put together CI30 is Calisthenics Kingz and their founder is HIT Richards. (HIT is an acronym for Hard Intense Trainer, which was given to HIT by his clients). I had the privilege of Interviewing HIT as part of my Fitness Interview Series (If you’re a Fitness Insider you may have heard it). I won’t get into details on the background of HIT or Calisthenics Kingz, but what I can tell you is HIT has LOADS of experience, and LOADS of credentials. What I can tell you is HIT knows his stuff inside and out. Feel free to research him and the company, I did and I was pleased.
The equipment you will need for CI30 is quite simple, a jump road and a chair (or steps or something you can use for chair dips). If you do this workout in your house, make sure the top of the jump rope does not hit the ceiling and you’ll be good to go. I did the entire program in my two car garage, with one car still in the garage! Yup, it does NOT require a whole lot of space. In fact, HIT, the creator of the program, does the program in a tiny room.
Of course, since this is a DVD type of workout, you will need some device in which to play the actual DVD.
Since this is a repeat workout, I suggest following along with the DVD the first few times so you can get the routine and the exercises down. I would even go as far as writing down the moves and the sequence so you can take this workout “on the road” so to speak.
If you choose, after you know the sequence of the moves and the rest times between them, feel free to use your own music and do the program without following along with the DVD.
If you feel real ambitious, you can take this workout to any local park and complete it as well. Bottom line, this is a workout program that can be completed just about anywhere.
I want to make one thing perfectly clear, although this workout is designed for anyone; young or old, skinny or not so skinny, male or female; CI30 is not for the casual person who only exercises for recreation. If done correctly, this workout will kick your butt period! CI30 is a full body workout. You will be doing push ups, a lot of pushups with different variations. You will work your legs, you will work your abs, you will get cardio… and one more thing, YOU WILL SWEAT!
If you’re a gym rat (I used to be one so I can say it), this workout will be just as intense, if not more intense, than any workout you’ve ever done.
If you’re serious about getting in phenomenal shape, this workout will do the trick, if you follow it.
The “Chiseled In 30” Workout Program in Detail
OK, now let’s get into the workout itself.
My first reaction was to say “doing the same workout for 5 days in a row, using the same muscles 5 days in a row, goes against everything I’ve ever heard about resting muscle groups for a few days between workouts.”
I’ve been working out for a LONG time, both at home and in a gym, and I’ve always lived by the “muscles need to rest” theory. But now I’m changing my tune. If I did not personally talk with HIT, and did not do my research, I may have just poo-poo’d this whole workout off. But, knowing his credentials, I knew there was a method to his madness, so to speak. HIT would not just throw a program together for sake of doing a program. One cannot get to his level of fitness or his knowledge of fitness without doing his homework. And, I can tell you, HIT has done his homework. After all, have you seen him? The Dude is ripped beyond belief!
So, I decided to not question his theory, but embrace it. After all, I run a fitness website and I wanted to be true to the program I would be reviewing, not my own personal beliefs that may or may not go with the philosophy of the actual program. I figured I would use the Machiavelli principle, “the ends justify the means.”
I kind of already covered this in my warning section above. But I will tell you, if you stay true to this program, the intensity level is through the roof! How can a program that does NOT use weights be so intense? (especially to someone who has lifted weights at a gym for a LONG time). It simply comes down to personal commitments. If you choose to hold a position for let’s say 5 seconds instead of the recommended 20 seconds, you may not feel the intensity. If you choose to jump rope for 20 seconds instead of the recommended 60 seconds, you may not get the cardio needed for the program. All I can tell you is the intensity of this workout is there, if you choose to find it is entirely up to you.
Sequence Of Moves
Just so you know, I will not go through each exercise of the program. If you want to know, then get the program. I will, however, talk about how the exercises are set up within the program.
Phase I and Phase II have different structures as far as the sequence of the exercises are concerned. For instance, Phase I has an ab exercise thrown in after two exercises and then again after two more exercises. Phase II has an ab exercise as the first move of the Phase, then that’s it. Strange you may ask, yes. But effectiveness is right on key. Besides, if you didn’t already know this, push ups require a lot of ab work as well, so your abs are being worked all through the program.
Also, I won’t say each exercise is increasingly harder than the previous, but I will say the final exercise in each Phase (with the exception of the calf raises) will leave you breathing harder than the others. Walk Out Push Ups and Burpees… OUCH is all I have to say!
Strength and Cardio
Keep this in mind, a good workout program will incorporate strength and cardio. A great workout program will utilize the best part of each. CI30 does just that, takes the best of strength training and the best of cardio training.
If it wasn’t for the jump rope and the timed rest periods between sets, CI30 would be purely a strength workout. I’m sure HIT designed it this way purposely, so it can be classified as a High Intensity Interval Training workout that incorporates both strength AND cardio, all within a 45-50 minute time table.
I will admit, following a nutrition plan of any kind has been difficult for me for a lot of reasons I will not get into at this time. I did, however, read through the plan and I can say it’s a great plan! Easy to follow and is right on track. When you couple that with the actual workout, you have no choice but to transform your body. I will say, the nutrition part of the program, although not as glamorous, is just as important, if not more important, than the actual workout part of the program.
OK, this is where I think HIT slightly missed it. As of the time of this review, Phase II was a bit confusing the first few times I went through the workout. I say this because I was used to hearing HIT describing the exercise before doing it in Phase I. Phase II wasn’t quite like that. He did the move or exercise, then told you what he did so you would know for the next set. So, instead of moving along with him, the first time you may have to see what he does so you know the move. This was a bit odd to me because it wasn’t that way in Phase I. After the 2nd or 3rd time doing Phase II, it wasn’t an issue though because you know what to do.
Some of the moves do take some coordination and I wish there was a bit more instruction on how to do them. But as I said above, after seeing HIT do it, and trying it myself, after the 2nd or 3rd time, it wasn’t an issue. I chalk it up to, as like just about anything, there is a bit of a learning curve you may have to go through, but it’s well worth it.
As with just about any workout program, background music is a big key in it. And of course, CI30 is no different. The music throughout the program is combination of in your face and nice relaxing. It’s hard to describe, but in my opinion, it does fit what HIT is attempting to do with the workout program. It was all instrumental, so to speak. By that I mean no vocals, just background music. Do I like the music? There is one song in particular that I did enjoy, that’s the one with the violin’s playing. It was more like a hip hop type rather than an orchestra type of violin. The rest of the music, well… let’s just say it had to grow on me.
Now, the beauty of this program is since you do not need equipment to do it you can do it anywhere and, therefore, you can use your own music as long as you know the sequence of the moves AND the rest time between them.
Setting and Production
If you’ve been around the at home workout programs, right away you’ll notice that, production wise, CI30 isn’t as high quality as others. Now, I’m not saying this is a bad thing, but I’m just pointing it out.
Was there a lot of work put into the creating and the production of CI30? Sure, absolutely! It’s obvious this was not thrown together at the spur of the moment. There was a lot of thought behind the production.
Now, if you pay real close attention, there are some flaws in the production. I bring this up because I’m sure there is someone who may say “Andrew, you didn’t say that in your review, I’m mad about it!” At the same time, my reaction to these little flaws, for lack of a better term, is “so what?” It’s a one camera set up with one microphone. Believe me, that does NOT take away from the actual program itself. I have no issues with the production quality, and neither should you. I will also add, the only reason I may have noticed these little production flaws is because I used to studio TV production. The person who didn’t study may never see them, OK?
In other words, what I am saying is that if you’re looking for the same kind of production quality as other big named companies that spend big money putting together their programs, you may be disappointed.
Here is the CI30 program’s setting, broken down as I see it: HIT in a room by himself with white walls and a wooden floor. He has his water, towel and jump rope on the floor again the back wall, window sill and door handle. He has a folded chair against the wall he pulls out when doing chair dips. That’s the extent of the visual. Oh, and HIT does the workout along with you as well!
At first the background looks a bit boring, but after thinking about it, I realize what HIT was doing was showing the genius of the simplicity of the actual program. No fluff. No fancy background. Just down and dirty, ground and pound workout at its finest.
That being said, the setting is fine and not distracting at all. Matter of fact, it makes you pay even more attention to the actual workout itself.
After completing the actual workout part of Chiseled In 30 (I mention my not following the nutrition plan above), I can honestly say that YES, this workout program is top notch!
I will admit, my actual weight dropped about 5lbs, but my body reshaped beyond my expectations. I have been told to not go by actual body weight so much, but by how my clothing fits. That being said, my belt decreased two notches and my shirt sleeves felt tighter around my arms. Both of those made me feel great!
The kicker was when people I hadn’t seen since beginning the program commented on how good I looked and how I had lost weight. To me, that made the biggest impact of how the program actually worked.
I could just imagine how much more my body would have changed if I would have followed the nutrition plan as well!
I have worked out in the gym for years, and have done countless at home workouts as well. Up until I did the this workout program, I only recommended 3 programs for great at home workouts. I can honestly say that “Chiseled in 30” is equally as effective, if not more effective, than any of the others.
Chiseled In 30 is top notch. It’s a program that is basic and simple, and most of all will get you to the physical condition you wish to be. I would recommend this program to anyone that is looking to get into great shape.
Great Job HIT Richards!
Great Job Calisthenics Kingz!
If you would like to hear the Interview I did with HIT, you need to be a Fitness Insider. Do so on the top right of this page.