At just 20 minutes the Ritual workout packs a punch and fits into any busy mama’s schedule.
About six months ago, I reviewed three different HIIT workouts around Singapore (two at gyms, one that I did at home). Due to a variety of factors, I ended up joining Ritual Gym in Holland Village. Six months on, I wanted to check in to let you know about my fitness progress, mama, and to let you why I love Ritual more than ever.
Prior to joining Ritual, I’d done the Kayla Itsines home workouts for about eight months, and was generally quite happy with the results (particularly ab definition, for which she’s famous), though I felt like I’d hit a wall with my progress, and the workouts were starting to feel like drudgery.
Here’s what I wrote after completing a 2-week trial at Ritual last September:
Billing itself as “The 30-Minute Gym,” Ritual was established in 2013 by Singaporean trainer Ian Tan, who developed an ultra-efficient workout training both his business partner, Brad Robinson, and TV personality Oli Pettigrew.
Ritual’s workouts are super-short: just 20 minutes in total, with about 12 minutes of work time and built-in rests. But they are also super-efficient; Tan’s “Progressive Sequence Training” program combines strength and conditioning, progressive overload, HIIT, and functional training so you’re doing intervals of exercises like burpees, kettlebell swings, pull-ups, push-ups, squats, and lunges. It’s all very similar to Kayla Itsines, with a few more pieces of equipment – including medicine balls, kettlebells, dumbbells, pull-up rings, and TRX suspension training bands – thrown in.
So those are the basics. Over the past six months, study after study has continued to come out demonstrating HIIT’s efficacy and benefits; you’re telling me it can reverse the aging process? Yes, please!
Ritual has become a seamless part of my daily routine. I love that you can easily book into a session – even minutes before it starts – with their handy app; on many occasions I’ve gotten out of a meeting early and then just booked on my way to the gym. With classes lasting just 20 minutes, I never find myself looking at the clock (not that there is one anyway) – just when things start to get painful, you’re on the last set and then out the door.
Workouts change every day, with even more of a shift from week to week, so just when you start getting sick of a particular movement (COUGH! Burpees COUGH!) you’ve moved on to a different sequence. The primary objective of this of course is to keep the body on its proverbial toes so your muscles are constantly challenged, but it also keeps workouts from ever feeling rote or predictable.
I also LOVE the trainers, all of whom are passionate and enthusiastic, and make a real effort to get to know each and every person in class. This became most apparent to me a few weeks ago when one of the trainers took me aside and asked quietly, “Are you pregnant?” He was the first person to notice, and it’s not because I’d suddenly developed a beer belly out of nowhere, but because the trainers pay that close attention to your physiology and movements day in and day out.
Speaking of being pregnant, I’m now approaching 18 weeks and continue to do Ritual 4-5 times a week with only slight modifications. I had zero morning sickness or nausea during the first trimester, and very little fatigue (don’t hate me!) and feel strongly that my regular workouts there played a role in this.
Before I was pregnant, I noticed not only that my arms and legs had gotten stronger, but that I experienced less soreness when I went for a run or played in a lacrosse game than I used to when I was doing conventional gym workouts. I was worried that I’d lost some muscle definition coming off Kayla Itsines, but when I saw this picture of my arms at Christmas, I let it go:
One thing I’d mention is there is less focus on ab exercises (you’re mainly working the core on things like burpees, mountain climbers, or push-ups), so I’d recommend adding that to your routine at home if abs are a priority.
I know not every mama wants to have arms like Michelle Obama, but that brings me to another thing I absolutely love about Ritual: the diversity of clients and totally accepting attitude. There are people of all shapes, sizes, and ages in each and every class I go to – it’s so refreshing and unlike any other gym I’ve ever attended.
If you’re just looking to get a bit more active, the workouts are quick and a great way to ease in to exercise. If you’re keen to burn insane amounts of calories, you can push yourself to do so (and the trainers are there to keep you motivated, too). I even know some crazy people who do double sessions (not me)!
Once again, I think it’s the perfect workout for busy mamas, and I promise you, it’s addictive! Don’t believe me? Enter our giveaway to win one of FIVE monthlong memberships and try it out for yourself. You’ll even get a cool little swag bag thrown in to the bargain (btw, their shakes are awesome).
With locations at Holland Village and Boat Quay (plus another CBD location at Robinson Road), Ritual is basically too convenient!