Day 233: Review of The Sufferfest’s Downward Spiral video

24 08 2010

Last night, I purchased one of the Sufferfest videos online. I mentioned these videos in a recent post. Let me just say the videos are appropriately named. I didn’t do much stretching before the workout, figuring I’d only be able to do about 5 minutes. After 35 minutes, I had finished the first 17 minutes of intervals and started the 5-minute cool-down period. (A second 17-minute section of intervals followed the cool-down). I still had about half the workout to do, but by then my shorts were starting to chafe and my left calf muscle was starting to get a bit cramped, so I called it quits. Tomorrow, I do the entire butt-kicking workout. To give a brief review:

Ordering process: The ordering process was super-simple. I visited The Sufferfest website, poked around until I decided which video I wanted, then proceeded with my $9.99 order. (I purchased the Downward Spiral which focuses on descending intervals — “60 minutes of structured agony at maximum effort.”). I paid by PayPal, then started the download process. On my broadband connection the download only took about 15 minutes. Plenty of time to set up my bike on the trainer, change into my bike clothes, grab a bottle full of water and make sure the ceiling fan was set on high speed.

How it works: During the video, instructions are included on-screen. In case you’re scrunching your eyes closed to block out the pain like I did (which doesn’t work, by the way), each time you hear a horse “neigh” it means look at the screen to see the next set of instructions. That tells you what level of effort to put into that particular section of the interval (based on RPE levels).

Audio: The audio soundtrack on this one includes alternative music tracks with good, quick tempo to help make the ride interesting. Songs flow together nicely without the choppy, awkward silent spots between tracks. The volume is just right and very clear. No blown-out distortion due to too-high recording levels.

Screen quality: As noted on the Sufferfest website, the videos are optimized for smaller screens such as laptops, iPods or iPhones. However, they should still display fine on larger screens also. Some of the videos (“Revolver” is one) are higher resolution and may be sharper on larger monitors or TV screens. The Downward Spiral was one of the lower-resolution videos. It was slightly fuzzy on my 19-inch computer monitor, but considering I’m not sitting directly in front of the screen, it wasn’t a problem at all. I’ve not yet watched it on my 32-inch TV. (Once purchased, you have the ability to burn the video to a DVD for use in a DVD player.)

My overall impression: These videos are a great buy for the money. This is the first time I’ve worked out on an indoor trainer and not watched the clock tick waiting for the boredom to end. I may have wished the suffering to come to an end, but I was very pleased with the workout. I wasn’t sure I’d make it 5 minutes through the video, so I’m happy I’ll be able to finish the whole thing. The music, the cycling footage and the intervals all made for a fun, but tough workout. If you’ve not tried The Sufferfest before, I’d recommend checking them out.

Today’s food journal:

— Whole wheat english muffin = 1 point
— 1 Tbsp peanut butter = 1 point
— Low-fat organic chocolate milk = 3 points

— Spinach salad = 0 points
— Veggie chicken patty = 3 points
— 1/2 apple = 1 point
— Light Lime salad dressing = 2 points
— Diet Coke = 0 points

— Soft pretzel = 5.5 points (estimate)
— Iced tea = 0 points

— 2 frozen fruit bars = 2 points (1 point each)

Life’s a journey. Enjoy the ride!

…( ) / ( ) 

Thanks for visiting.



2 responses

10 10 2010
Day 280: Winter training « Cyclingproject365

[…] that means working out with fellow cyclists at one of the local spin classes or training with my Sufferfest video. Carrick and I are thinking about buying an additional stationary trainer so we can do the […]

5 11 2010
Day 306: Cold-weather cycling « Cyclingproject365

[…] I have the appropriate clothing for cold weather. I have indoor trainers (stationary, rollers and a Sufferfest video to go along with them), I have the need for more exercise to speed up my weight loss. Now I just […]

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