10 Rounds is a decent, easy-to-follow program that requires minimal equipment for home workouts and builds up your cardio endurance. You should be able to drop a few pounds for sure. But if you’re not a complete noob, which is who 10 Rounds is designed for, you might find this workout boring or more “fun” than productive.
|Experience Level||Beginner, Intermediate|
|Home/Gym||Home (with equipment)|
- Minimal equipment required
- Unique workouts to fight boredom
- Good for burning calories
- Useless nutrition guide
- Many users say it’s “way too easy”
- No way to track progress
Any boxing superfan will tell you that surviving ten rounds in the ring without a K.O. is the mark of an elite prizefighter.
And, if you’ve caught wind of the 10 Rounds boxing-centric workout program, you might have a few questions buzzing through your mind.
Joel Freeman is ripped (there’s no disputing that).
But was this the program behind his bulky yet cut physique? Is it a fun way to stay active, or will it leave you in beach-ready shape? Does it actually shed stubborn body fat like the ads suggest?
Here’s the blow-by-blow of Joel Freeman’s 10 Rounds routine from Beachbody On Demand.
About the Creator – Joel Freeman
If you’re a Beachbody On Demand veteran (the creators of the old-school P90X), the name “Joel Freeman” might ring a bell.
That’s because the fitness guru is the mastermind behind four programs on the platform, including LIIFT4, 10 Rounds (this one), Core de Force, and Joel’s Bod Exclusive.
Now almost two decades into his fitness career, Joel Freeman is a name to keep on your radar. What started as a group fitness class in Washington state gym in 2004 turned into:
- A job in the Washington State Department of Health’s corporate wellness division
- A budding relationship with Beachbody in 2005
- A position as the Group Exercise Director at Gold’s Gym SoCal
- A life-changing offer from Beachbody in 2016 to become a Super Trainer
But his rise to fame wasn’t a slow climb.
Freeman’s eight-week LIIFT4 collected 25 million views in just two years. 10 Rounds’ success followed, drawing more than five million streams in only a few months.
While he’s no Tyson or Holyfield, Freeman’s NASM Certified Personal Trainer certificate proves he’s not punching above his weight — at least from the fitness buff’s perspective.
What is Joel Freeman’s 10 Rounds?
Torture. Hell. Suffering.
Just kidding (well, that depends if you’re in shape or not).
Joel Freeman’s 10 Rounds is a six-week boxing-heavy routine designed to torch calories, improve cardio, and build full-body strength.
Across 30 intermediate workouts (lasting 30-40 minutes apiece) with five exhausting workouts a week, here’s what you should expect:
- Ten, three-minute “rounds” per workout (AKA: interval training)
- Three shadow boxing sessions per week (sparring & footwork)
- Two strength-building weight sessions per week (not as many as Body Beast)
- 100% video workouts
- A workout calendar & meal plan guidance (well, sort of)
If you can survive six weeks without DQing yourself, you’ll exit the ring stronger, more powerful, fitter, and faster. The torched body fat and those newfound abs are merely bonuses!
Well, that’s if Joel Freeman’s 10 Rounds lives up to the hype.
Joel Freeman’s 10 Rounds Details & Features
Unless you’re secretly an MMA belt-holder, Freeman’s claim that you’ll ‘enter the “zone” where the fun takes over, and the workout disappears’ sounds like the classic marketing ploy.
Think about how many people saw the Insanity infomercials on TV in 2012 and thought it’d be a fun and easy method to lose fat in their living room. (Unless you’re a sadist, it wasn’t either. This goes for P90x too.)
But let’s hop into the ring and size up this program.
The Beachbody On Demand Module
Maybe it’s a soaring budget or industry-leading tech gurus running the show. But Beachbody On Demand deserves a shout-out here: their digital module is as user-friendly as they come.
On the “Start Here” page for 10 Rounds, you’ll see the “Getting Started” videos that’ll walk you through the program’s basics (ex: a trailer, a sample workout, and nutrition).
Yet, you also have three more tabs to explore, including:
- Workouts: This is where you’ll find your workouts divided by week. Each week brings you to a different destination across the United States (Los Angeles, Miami, Brooklyn), which changes the background scenery. Unless a Philly-area warehouse motivates you more than an urban Brooklyn gym, it won’t impact your workout whatsoever.
- Mirrored Workouts: This section is a nice bonus if you dare to venture into it. Because the standard workouts only “mirror” if you’re a lefty, the mirrored version essentially flips the screen for us righties. When you punch with your right hand, you can match Freeman doing it with his left hand. In other words, it takes the thinking out of your workout.
- Program Materials: Here, you’ll find every guide you could imagine that’d help you finish all six weeks without giving up (and while still seeing progress). It features a workout calendar, a quick-start guide to nutrition, and sample meal plans. The materials also come in Spanish and French if you’re not a native English speaker!
The first true “bummer” is that there’s nothing to log.
The only thing you track is whether or not you completed each workout in the calendar, but even then, it’s all or nothing. Logging your weight or your rounds completed would make more sense.
But if you look deep enough (seriously, if you really dig), you can track your body measurements in the “Get Started Guide.” But that’s about it.
10 Rounds Schedule
The 10 Rounds routine follows the same generic weekly format:
Joel Freeman recommends two rest days a week, wherever you can squeeze ‘em in.
On the lift days, you’ll alternate between lower and upper body. Week one, lift day #1 will be lower body, and lift day #2 has an upper-body emphasis; on week two, it’s the opposite!
The boxing training sessions gradually ramp up their intensity as you “travel” from LA to Las Vegas to Dallas to Miami to Brooklyn to Philadelphia.
You’ll start by knocking out the basics, like power jabs and crosses (1s and 2s). As you become a boxing connoisseur, you’ll practice uppercuts, full-body conditioning, sparring pivots, and power.
It all leads up to “The Final Fight” in Philly.
What You Need (Equipment)
Your boxing sessions will be almost entirely equipment-free (bummer, it’s mostly shadow boxing).
But you might also need:
Bowflex SelectTech 552 Version 2
Each dumbbell adjusts from 5 to 52.5 pounds. Rapidly switch from one exercise to the next. You don’t need multiple dumbbells cluttering up your home gym.
Not sure what you need for a certain workout?
If you go to the “Workouts” tab, you can click the three vertical dots next to a workout. That’ll show you how long the workout is, what you’ll focus on, and what equipment you might need ready.
No more scrambling for your resistance band mid-workout.
Talk about convenience!
What a 10 Rounds Workout Is Like
For better or for worse, each 10 Rounds workout follows a basic format: ten three-minute “rounds” with 45 seconds of “transition” in between.
For example, take Boxing Workout #1 (Power Jabs & Crosses).
The session starts with a resistance band warm-up to get the blood flowing to your muscles for three minutes. In the 45-second grace period, Freeman tells you what’s coming up next.
He might explain how to throw a jab or what the new combination is.
When the bell goes off, it’s the end of the round! Get ready for another three minutes of sweat-dripping, muscle-aching exercise.
The strength-training sessions offer a little more variety (and something to look forward to if throwing punches and practicing footwork aren’t your forte).
On lower-body day, you’ll see exercises like reverse lunges and goblet squats (with your dumbbells). Upper-body exercises feature floor presses and bent-over rows.
A Few Notes About the Videos
Video workouts can be hit-or-miss, especially if you rely on your digital trainer to encourage you across the finish line. That’s why it’s worth mentioning that:
- Freeman describes how to do each exercise (including form tips)
- He breaks down challenging boxing jargon into easy-to-understand terms (1, 2, roll, shuffle forward)
- Everything comes with a visual demonstration
- Freeman is talkative, motivating, and interacts with his backup crew.
In other words, 10 Rounds isn’t a drill sergeant-style workout with Freeman shaming you or implying everything is simple.
If you’re a true beginner looking to get in shape, you’ll find his likable personality to be a nice touch and possibly motivating enough to last all ten rounds.
The QuickStart Nutrition Guide & Sample Meal Plans
The QuickStart Nutrition Guide is an 84-page PDF that serves as a crash course in Beachbody dieting. However, it’s relatively generic and doesn’t seem to be only for the 10 Rounds routine.
In this guide, you’ll find:
- Constant nods to their own shakes (Shakeology), which earns a mention 58 times in the entire document. It’s overkill, and you don’t get to the actual meat until page 11.
- A choice between two eating plans: 2B Mindset (if you overeat) and Ultimate Portion Fix (if portion control is your major issue). Sounds the same, but okay.
- Less-than-subtle nudges to buy the Team Beachbody supplements on almost every single page. Message received.
The whole guide seems like a mish-mash of anything diet-related without giving clear-cut answers. Most solutions circle back to “try this product,” and boy, are there a lot of those!
Science seems to be an afterthought, too.
You have two calorie options based on your weight: 1500 or 1800. In all honesty, the only worthwhile piece of the guide is pages 46 and onward — the recipes!
The body weight planner from the NIH is a better gauge of how many calories you actually need to eat per day. There’s no arbitrary recommendation, like 1500 or 1800.
The meal plans in the 10 Rounds module are a little more direct, going the extra step and planning a grocery list for you.
But serving sizes are nowhere to be found, which is interesting given both eating plans are designed to help with portion control.
10 Rounds Calories Burned
How many calories you torch with 10 Rounds depends on three things:
- How long the workout is.
- How much effort you pour into the session.
- How much you currently weigh.
On the low-end, 30 minutes of sparring and footwork might shred 279-465 calories (150 lbs to 250 lbs). The strength-training sessions are closer to 100-200 calories burned per half hour.
Over the course of the week, 10 Rounds alone could create a 1,037+ calorie deficit.
Not that impressive unless you ramp up your intensity and cut your diet.
But if you chop 500 calories from your diet each day on top of these five weekly workouts, you could shed 1.29+ pounds a week.
10 Rounds Vs LIIFT4
LIIFT 4 and 10 Rounds are two of Joel Freeman’s hottest Beachbody On Demand routines. And, while Freeman is the common denominator, both routines have stark differences.
Choose 10 Rounds if you want to break a sweat, shed pounds, and develop better control of your body. It’s also a five-day-a-week program, meaning commitment is a must.
Select LIIFT4 if you’re seeking total body transformation. It’s a four-day-a-week program that builds endurance, torches fat (via HIIT), and sculpts muscle through weightlifting.
10 Rounds Vs Core De Force
Unlike 10 Rounds, Core De Force isn’t a Joel Freeman exclusive; it also features another trainer and creator by the name of Jericho.
This 30-day program is far shorter than the six-week 10 Rounds. It’s a little more exciting than 10 Rounds, too, featuring cardio, explosive kickboxing, and even some Muay Thai.
Both follow the three-minute “round” style.
If you want more defined muscles and a slimmed-down waist, Core De Force is the best option. 10 Rounds is a better call if building long-term endurance is a deal-breaker for you.
7 Benefits of Joel Freeman’s 10 Rounds
- Since you need only resistance bands, dumbbells, and a yoga mat (optional), you can do most workouts from the comfort of your living room or bedroom.
- The mirrored videos guarantee that you can mirror the video whether you’re a righty or lefty. Then again, it’s odd they were a recent add (it’s Beachbody, after all).
- Each workout is unique, down to the exercises and background scenery.
- If standard cardio workouts like running, biking, or rowing aren’t your thing, these fat-shredding workouts are a decent alternative. In a 2014 study into boxing and resistance training as weight loss methods, participants shed a noticeable amount of visceral fat (the fat surrounding your organs).
- The three-minute rounds with short breaks are a form of interval training, which can boost fat loss in the long term. This is backed by a 2019 meta-analysis that discovered interval training led to 28.5% more fat loss than steady-state training.
- If you leave it all in the ring, you’ll end the workout sweating and with burned calories.
- Many users describe it as “fun.” Results-wise, however, some recommend pairing it with another Beachbody workout to see true progress.
5 Negatives of Joel Freeman’s 10 Rounds
- The nutrition guide is almost pure fluff and advertisements. It’s more a magazine than a cookbook or science-based eating plan.
- If you were hoping for some bag work and donning boxing gloves, sorry!
- One user reports losing 18.6 pounds and replacing his beer gut with a six-pack. But on Reddit, the consensus is that it’s too easy and “not a workout.”
- The cooldowns are in a second video. They seem like an afterthought.
- There’s no way to track your progress or how many rounds you last.
Wrapping Up This 10 Rounds Review
10 Rounds is a pretty decent, easy-to-follow program that’ll get your heart thumping, forehead sweating, and fat-torching.
It requires minimal equipment for home workouts. And, if your cardio didn’t graduate high school with you, the three-minute training sessions and breaks will help you build up your endurance.
But if you’re an intermediate, which is who 10 Rounds is designed for, you might find this workout boring or more “fun” than productive.
For beginners, though, it’s a fine starting point for a weight loss journey, whether getting shredded or dropping a few pounds is your goal.
Want to try our best overall program instead? Check out Superhero X12!