Why I decided to quit BBG
Okay this is going to be a biggie! As some of you know, I got into fitness at the start of January 2016 when I made the decision to download the Sweat with Kayla app. If you don’t know what BBG or Sweat with Kayla is, I recommend you read my blog post over here. In short, BBG stands for Bikini Body Guide and was developed by Australian personal trainer Kayla Itsines. It’s a 12 week resistance training guide and has also been released as the Sweat With Kayla app (complete with videos).
I completed the first round of BBG and then chose to repeat it as I felt there was still some moves that I hadn’t quite mastered. It’s a tough guide and if you’re looking to lose body fat, it's a great option. Part of my motivation for doing the guide was the amazing results achieved by Kayla and the other women in the BBG community. So many of these women said that all they did was BBG, so I thought, if all they do is this guide, and they look like that surely I can do it too!
At around April, I moved house into an apartment complex that had a gym. Before then, I always did my BBG workouts at home as I wasn’t comfortable in a gym environment. I started doing my workouts in the apartment gym but was naturally curious of the weight machines as I’d never used any before. I’ve never had a gym membership before either, so weights felt totally out of my depth.
I had been trying to do a single push-up for months and who knows, maybe I would have eventually got there doing the BBG workouts, but I have always had really weak and skinny arms and I thought it might help to start doing some weights instead. So I Googled a few exercises and swapped out BBG arm day for weights. Just really simple dumbbell stuff. Then as I become more confident I started following and annoying my boyfriend at the gym and asking, “what does this do” and “this looks fuuuuun”. I had a go at the multi-station gym machine, just trying out some leg moves and I was like, “wow, this might make me not hate leg day!” I don’t hate Kayla’s guides, they are amazing, but there’s a reason it’s called “Death by Kayla”. They are freaking hard. I would really struggle to motivate myself to do the workouts because I knew how physically exhausting they were. I told myself it was worth it, I mean, it’s only 28 minutes! But for me, it just got to a point where I dreaded working out legs so much, that I would try and avoid doing them altogether.
I felt bad because I was known on Instagram as this BBG girl but had stopped doing half of BBG. Kayla had featured me 4 times on her page and I knew a lot of my followers followed me because of the fact that I did BBG. I didn’t want to stop doing it because I didn’t want to let anyone down. So I tried doing weights and BBG, but it all become too much. I gradually replaced BBG arms and legs with weights but still continued to follow the recommended LISS, HIIT and ab workouts. But when people would ask me how I got my results I would say BBG, because I had only been doing weights for a few weeks, and I had been doing BBG for about 8 months. So I was stuck in this kind of pickle. I also didn’t want to answer any questions about weight training as I was all self taught and not qualified or confident to give anyone advice on the matter.
One of the reasons I wanted to stick to BBG so hard was because Kayla has a freaking amazing body and I assumed that all she did was BBG. Other girls in the BBG community also claim to only do BBG, and their bodies look so strong and fit that I was like, “well I’m not going to try anything else, because I want their results.” Then I saw a video Kayla posted with her working out in her home gym, using the gym machines. She says, “Weights, why not? I love them!” I was really surprised and had no idea that she used weights. I assumed her body was a direct result of her program. I felt like a bit of an idiot, I mean of course she uses weights. This is the point where I become overwhelmed. I wanted to be strong and fit like Kayla, and wanted to keep doing BBG but also include weights into my regime. It just become too much to try and do it all at once. So that’s when I had to make a choice between the two.
Now, maybe I have a different body type to some of these women who say they only do BBG, I’ve always had little muscles in my arms and they’ve taken me the longest to develop. I’m not saying these women are lying by saying they only do BBG, all I know is that if all I did was BBG I would not achieve the results they did. I don’t want their exact bodies, I understand that all bodies are different and genetics does play a huge part. Thus, I felt that as I was naturally slim (I always had trouble building muscle on my upper body), I was never going to develop muscle the way other women did who said they only followed the program. Remember, every body is different, and every one of us has different goals for our bodies.
I didn't quit BBG because I thought it was a bad program, I quit because I have different goals for my body that cannot be solely achieved with the BBG program. In my personal opinion, I think BBG is fantastic if:
- You want to start working out but aren’t sure where to begin
- You know nothing about fitness (I learned so much from warming up, to stretches to a range of different exercises that I still use today)
- You want to lose body fat
- You have limited time
- You prefer to workout at home
- You need the support of a community (search any BBG hashtag on Instagram to connect with thousands of women who are doing the program)
If I had never started BBG I would never have gotten into fitness and for that I am grateful!
So to lay it out for you, these are the reasons why I chose to quit BBG:
- I was dreading the workouts (I'm more of weights gal, I don't like cardio-based training)
- I wanted to be able to eat more (the recommended BBG diet is 1,600 calories and I now eat 2,300 calories)
- I wanted to build my legs and booty and you can't do this without A) eating more and B) lifting heavy
I hope I've been able to answer any of your questions you've had about why I no longer do BBG and also helped you out with any decisions you've needed to make along the way.
P.S For those wondering, I workout 5 times a week, twice a week with my PT and three times on my own. I do a combination of free weights (dumbbells, barbells, medicine balls, sandbags), pin loaded machines and a few body weight exercises.