80 Day Obsession vs. FASTer Way to Fat Loss explores the ways these two programs differ, allowing you to make the best decision for your goals!
When it comes to health and fitness it can be hard to ignore all of the messages coming at you from all sides. Run a marathon! Orange Theory! Barre classes! Yoga! Pilates! Crossfit! Just go for a walk! Work with a trainer! With so many options, how do you know which one to choose?
If you’re like me and being constantly bombarded with all the workout options, then it’s likely you’ve come into contact with a coach for either Beachbody or FASTer Way to Fat Loss. You’ve likely wondered if their programs were effective, sustainable, easy to adopt, and – to put it bluntly – worth the hype. Although I want to be upfront and say that I am a FASTer Way to Fat Loss affiliate, my goal is the same as it was whenever I was a personal trainer: to see others succeed in their personal goals. If (after reading this) you want to do either 80 Day Obsession with Beachbody and/or FASTer Way to Fat Loss, I have got some dynamite women I can hook you up with!
I want to iterate something that may or may not be clear: I am not a licensed physician, and therefore I am not able to recommend anything to anyone. I’m simply sharing my experiences and personal thoughts as an average, healthy woman who wants to look and feel good and who has gone through both of these programs in depth. In this post I want to explore what makes these programs unique and different from the following angles:
- eating plans and food “rules”
- workout options
- mindset differences
- long-term health
- pricing/is it worth it?
- final opinions
Eating Plans and Food “Rules”
80 Day Obsession follows the color-coded container system made popular by the supertrainer who created the program, Autumn Calabrese. It also uses timed nutrition which, from what I can tell, hails from the body building world and is aimed at maximizing specific macronutrients to build muscle and recover at max capacity. When you start the 80 Day Obsession Program, you calculate the number of each container you’re to consume in a day, and then you just fill up the container and eat it. You can do this on your own following the online guide, or work with a Beachbody coach.
- Heather’s thoughts on the 80 Day Obsession container system: I really liked the way it helped redefine a proper portion size for me. However, if you don’t want to just eat one food group at a time (i.e. you want a casserole, or a soup or something) I found it more time consuming to figure out how to do that than was really necessary. I also don’t love eating 6 small meals a day, so while I tried the timed nutrition for a bit I just didn’t find it a sustainable practice for my lifestyle.
FASTer Way to Fat Loss is a program created by Amanda Tress that utilizes intermittent fasting, carb cycling and whole food nutrition to help its clients achieve a sustainable food lifestyle. You work directly with your coach to figure out your caloric and macronutrient needs, and you can track it all in their app. You will also be working directly with your coach on which days utilize which macronutrients for their carb cycling program (which changes to avoid plateaus).
- Heather’s thoughts on the FASTer Way to Fat Loss eating system: I was already doing intermittent fasting, so that wasn’t scary for me although I have heard it’s the main concern a lot of people have. My advice? Go at it slowly. I do love having a smaller eating window because it helps me really focus on eating more nutrient-dense foods first, and it really does help me feel lean and more focused.
80 Day Obsession touts having 80 different workouts to keep things interesting and avoid exercise plateaus. It was shot in real time, and Autumn actually does the workouts with you (gone are the days where a trainer just tells you what to do while they stand there looking nice). It utilizes dumbells, resistance loops (I got mine on Amazon), and sliders (like these), which make it perfect for home workouts. You go through three 4-week phases, and then one Peak Week at the end.
- Heather’s thoughts on the workouts: For the most part I enjoy these workouts. I do feel at times some of the moves are harder than they need to be. The modifier doesn’t show modifications for some of the exercises, which makes it hard to adjust for those who don’t have a background in fitness. I feel it’s also a little misleading to say there are 80 different workouts. You basically cycle through the same moves for 4 weeks, just with different rep/set numbers, so it feels more like a technicality. Another thing: the cardio workouts SUCK the life out of me, not because they’re so difficult (even though they are hard), but they are all the same for each phase and it gets a little boring. I will say, though, that I felt very strong overall and saw improvement in my cardiovascular strength as well.
FASTer Way to Fat Loss workouts are done in conjunction with your carb cycling days (your coach will help you with this – don’t worry). They also have a full library of different workouts that you can do in your home or in a gym setting, as well as printable workouts you can have wherever you need them. The workouts are anything from HIIT to weight training to barre to bike workouts and everything in between, and use dumbells and resistance loops (occasionally).
- Heather’s thoughts on the FASTer Way to Fat Loss workouts: These started out deceptively simple, but were incredibly effective. I feel like the prescribed workouts worked up in difficulty at a reasonable pace, and I liked the modifications offered as well. I will say that I got so many compliments on my legs after following this program! I felt very strong and lean afterwards as well.
80 Day Obsession is exactly what it sounds like: 80 days of being obsessed with your fitness goals. This is reiterated a million times throughout the program (understandable). There are moments where the concept of progress over perfection is mentioned, but the overarching theme is that you should take these 80 days and be wholly dedicated to your goals. Autumn talks a lot about being spot-on with your eating plan, drinking a lot of water, no alcohol, and pushing yourself as hard as you can in the workouts. There are also a lot of conversations about self-care in regards to getting massages, taking baths, and foam rolling.
- Heather’s thoughts on the 80 Day Obsession Mindset: As an Enneagram 3 this thought process really resonated with me. However, as someone with a history of disordered eating, too many food rules can make me go to an unhealthy place. I really love the idea of being hyper-focused on creating the best “me” possible, but it definitely isn’t a long-term program for me in this way. I have seen major transitions in health by some who loved the kickstart this program provided!
From the get-go with FASTer Way to Fat Loss I was hearing the term “progress over perfection.” The first week you do the program is strictly built around you learning how to actually do the program in real time with your coach. Will the program be even more effective for someone who performs perfectly with it every single day? Of course. But that’s not the expectation. Progress over perfection seemed to be the resounding theme with this program in an effort to build a long-term lifestyle.
- Heather’s thoughts on the FASTer Way to Fat Loss mindset: the idea of progress over perfection really moved me. The idea that one can be grace-filled in approaching healthy living and weight loss is still a concept I’m working on, but is one that I know will be key to healthy living in the long-term. Which leads me to…
80 Day Obsession is very upfront about the fact that these 80 days of being 100% obsessed with your fitness is just the beginning of the journey, not the destination. While the mindset is based in obsession, it’s more of a kickstart to getting and staying healthy. The concepts of healthy eating and pushing yourself in workouts are important as you move into a full-on lifestyle, but the program itself was not built to actually be that lifestyle.
- Heather’s thoughts on the 80 Day Obsession lifestyle: I feel like it’s clearly stated above and in the program, but this program is not meant to necessarily be a life-long program. Also, there is no way I could ever do the program more than once a year because it’s just not sustainable for the long-term. I also appreciated Autumn’s honesty about this as well. Could you do the program every day for the rest of your life? Maybe. Should you/would you want to? Probably not.
FASTer Way to Fat Loss, despite the name, is actually built to be a long-term program. Fat loss is a goal of it for some, but long-term health through fasting (google the benefits of it – trust me) and whole food nutrition are the ultimate goal of the program. This is made clear in the research done to create the program, and in the coaching style promoted as well.
- Heather’s thoughts on the FASTer Way to Fat Loss lifestyle: This is definitely a sustainable lifestyle. There have been times I’ve had to change my eating style and schedule to accommodate real life, but it’s been easy to jump back in and pick up where I left off. The older I get the less focused I am on aesthetics and the more I want to focus on long-term health. As far as programs go, this is the one that fits the bill in that area.
Pricing – is it worth it?
80 Day Obsession is a program you can find on Beachbody on Demand, which means that you have to purchase a subscription for the whole site/app to access the program. I pay $100 for the entire year (an incredible deal), plus the $20 or so for bands and sliders (that are purchased on Amazon). I did not buy the recommended supplements, and did not join a challenge group which means I did not have a coach or community cheering me on. Therefore, if I just counted the subscription for the 80 days of the program it would cost a total of about $1.50 a day for the workouts. If you were to purchase the subscription + 80 Day Obsession accessories pack + recommended supplements the total cost would be somewhere around $398.85 for the first month, and then a little over $200 for every month after to keep up with the supplements (Shakeology, Energize, and Recover).
- Heather’s thoughts on the 80 Day Obsession pricing: Because I chose to not use the supplements and purchased my accessories from Amazon I was able to get away with a very low cost on this program. If you do it the way I did it then you’re getting an incredible deal, although I obviously can’t speak to how the results would be different if I had followed along with the supplementation recommendations. If you go all-in and buy everything from Beachbody, including the supplements, then the cost is obviously much higher. If you go the more inexpensive route then the program is absolutely worth it; however, I don’t think it’s worth it at almost $200 per month.
FASTer Way to Fat Loss follows an 8-week program, and you are required to go through the initial 8 weeks before you are able to jump in with the VIP program. The cost for the initial 8 weeks is $199; however there are no other cost requirements. This includes all of the coaching and help you’ll want along the way. The cost to continue working with your coach and having access to the meal plans, workouts, and community afterwards is then $99 per month.
- Heather’s thoughts on the FASTer Way to Fat Loss program: Honestly I flinched a little at the investment until I priced out the 80 Day Obsession program. After looking at several other programs and gyms (which I won’t mention here), it looks like this pricing is pretty consistent across the board. Knowing what I know about how this program has changed my actual life (as opposed to 80 days of it), I would say that while it’s a higher cost, it’s worth it. Remember, this is if you’re taking into account not just fat loss and aesthetics, but long term health issues like hormone balance, brain health, mobility, and more. Those things alone are worth that cost every month, even if it means not eating out as much, brewing coffee at home, and forgoing a few extra things here and there.
Here’s the thing: if you select a program and adhere to it fully, you will see results. I have yet to find a program that did literally nothing for me when I put in the work. That said, after going through both programs several times, committing to the eating plans, working through the mental aspects, and doing the workouts I feel like the best bang for my buck and my time is still FASTer Way to Fat Loss.
Part of this is because what I’m working toward these days is much more whole-health related and much less about how I look, and FASTer Way to Fat Loss does just that. I also really appreciate that the coaches have a much more strenuous certification process and have to be selected after an interview process. I’m not in any way knocking Beachbody coaches – I know and adore several who take their job very seriously. At the end of the day, though, I do appreciate knowing that the coach I’m working with had to put in a lot of time and energy first.
Friends, I will say this again though: when you select a program and commit to doing it, you will see results. You will see a change. And the discipline that comes from sticking with it til the end is a powerful catalyst of change in other areas of your life as well!