Today is my first DVD review. I have put it off because, in general, I haven’t used fitness DVDs for my workouts. I like getting in the weight room with my music on my iPod, doing my thing. As a reviewer this may be a good thing. I have a fresh perspective, not having already developed a favorite DVD or fitness personality. Not only is working out at home with a DVD a relatively new routine for me, the DVDs themselves are new to me as well. So here it goes.
I picked Jillian Michaels: Banish Fat, Boost Metabolism because it is one of the top 10 on Amazon in the fitness category. Due to the success of “The Biggest Loser”, Jillian Michaels is also very popular right now. Basically anything with her image sells. So I thought I would see what all the fuss was about. I was also curious if she would yell at me the way she yells at the contestants on the ranch.
The workout can be approached in a couple of different ways. She divides the content into circuits, each circuit consisting of 3-4 exercises repeated twice. If you are a beginner, you can pick and choose circuits to put together a workout that allows you to build up to the full workout. Since I am pretty sure I am past beginner, I decided to do the whole thing my first time out. That meant a 40 minute workout consisting of everything from kickboxing moves to walking planks. At the end of the workout I was dripping with sweat, always a sign of success.
Let’s start first with what I liked.
- Like I said, I was dripping with sweat by the end. It is a very good cardio workout. You are always moving, so your heart rate always stays up.
- The circuits are not complicated. They are based on moves most of us already know, like jump squats or standing side crunches. I didn’t feel like I had to overcome a huge learning curve for the workout to be effective.
- She starts with kickboxing moves and I like to punch and kick. The one workout video I do own is Tai-Bo, so she had me at the first punch.
- The option to customize the workout is nice. You can pick as many or as few of the circuits to do as you have time or endurance for. This should help beginners not feel overwhelmed and allow for someone in a time crunch to get an effective workout.
Now, for the things that I didn’t like so much.
- I wanted more of a resistance workout. I felt that my lower body got sufficiently exhausted with moves like jump squats, but my upper body felt a little neglected by the end.
- I know the point is to keep moving, but a few seconds for water breaks would have been nice.
- It would be helpful to have on the menu how long each individual circuit lasts. That way if you are short on time and need to make a 20 minute workout you can do so.
- For some reason, the first couple of circuits made my feet hurt. This could be just me or it could be all the calisthenics up front. Beware if you don’t like or have an issue doing burpees.
All in all, I think this is a solid video. On a scale of 1-10 (1 being bottom of the barrel, 10 being the best workout I have ever done) I would give it a 7. It is simple and effective. Jillian does not yell at you nor is she overly enthusiastic. Anyone, at any level, should be able to get a good workout with this DVD.
Let me know what you think!